Although the experience of roleplaying should not be reduced to the ordering and listing of a character's statistics they are important because the statistics are the means by which we create the illusion of success and failure. Representing a fantasy world through numbers is rather crude and that is why Storytelling is an art form and being a player is equally creative and demanding a task. However, the more limited the facility of the numbers to recreate conditions the more difficult it will be to go beyond them.
To facilitate in creating characters as closely in touch with a player's vision as possible there are several sets of advanced traits. Like basic traits they describe an aspect of a character's being in a numeric form, however, they tend to be less precise in nature than the basic traits. In contrast the advanced traits tend to describe tendencies, aptitudes and emotional states.
Passions, merits and flaws are optional traits the Storyteller does not have to allow in the game but they do expand the game by giving everyone more options. These are advanced traitst that are not necessarily common to different characters. When using merits and flaws the storyteller should have the final say on what is and isn't allowed. A variety of reasons could occur that would make the purchase of a trait impractical for a given game. Players and Storytellers should feel free to be creative in coming up with new merits and flaws to help tailor their characters.
Information on using adds can be found in Chapter 6 under the Critical Roles section.
Dice pools for various actions in Ranma 1/2 are sometimes large enough to allow incredible degrees of success. However, as the difficulty of your actions increases the successes become less and less common. Even a twelve dice pool is unlikely to have many successes against a difficulty of ten. Yet when facing another skilled martial artist difficulties of ten are not uncommon and one or two succusses are inadequate. That is why on occasion you will need to make critical rolls which allow a player to gain exceptional degrees of success even in very difficult situations. Adds can only be purchased once the character has reached their maximum level in the trait or level five, whichever happens first.
Adds can not be purchased during character creation but only with experience and only for traits that are used in dice pools. Adds can be bought for any trait except passions, merits, flaws, health levels and other adds because these are not parts of dice pools.
Note : it is possible to buy adds for Chi or Willpower because these can be used as stand alone dice pools. Be forewarned that this kind of experimentation can produce very weird results. Storytellers should feel free to disallow purchasing adds for Willpower or Chi if they want to.
The use of adds in combat are limited in the scope of their application but do you know what can done with Botany and adds? The Storyteller will want to consider the ramification of using adds in general purpose abilities before allowing players to use them. Although the Systems & Rules chapter says that critical rolls are only used in fight or flight response situations what invokes that varies to a deranged mind ie. Kodachi.
Adds are purchased at the same experience cost as the trait it is associated with and adds have a range of zero to ten. Adds are usually associated with abilities, techniques and attributes. When you do have to make a critical roll and if you have adds for more than one of the given traits in your dice pool add all of the adds up and that is your adds score.
To illustrate the differences between Passions, Merits and Flaws I will use a trait (Obsession) that exists as all three to display how it would work differently in each case. The Merit of Obsession is usually referred to as a Driving Goal. Driving Goals are character fixations that the character has learned to focus their energies into so as to become more accomplished when dealing with and which they can ignore when they need to. As a Flaw Obsessions tend to be omnipresent, impossible to forget except for short periods of time and drive the character to actions that may be irrational. As a Passion it is some of both - it is omnipresent but also improves the character, giving them strength to accomplish the goal. Ranma possess a Driving goal merit in his pursuit of martial arts, Shampoo has an Obsession flaw when dealing with Ranma (it is a flaw because her fixation ultimately drives her to actions that repulse Ranma) and Azusa has an Obsession Passion - an obsession with possessing all things kawaii.
Passions are both a plot device and character enhancement. They exist to help a player represent the emotional tendencies of their characters. If a character has a passion score any roles involving that passion get that score as a minus to their difficulty numbers. For example Happosai has a trait score of five in Lechery and thus all roles involving Lechery are at a -5 difficulty. However, a character also gets his score added to the difficulty to resist any action involving that passion so Happosai is at +5 difficulty to resist any Lecherous action when the opportunity presents itself.
Passions can both be extremely useful and dangerous. Passions can be bought freely during character creation at the cost of 2 freebie points per level. Passions have a range of 0 to 10 though players should have a special background to take a passion over five. Passions may be gained during game play at 4 experience for the first level and 2 X current level for each after that but should have a good plot reason for developing them.
Gaining a new passion or increasing a passion should not be taken lightly. The Storyteller would be perfectly justified in requiring that such an increase be accompanied by some action or event in the character's life to justify it. At the Storyteller's discretion if a player resists a given passion too much he may lose levels in it as it is assumed his character is changing.
Some possible passions include :
(note : we are beginning to get into some Chinese names here. I know no, absolutely none, zilch, zero, zip about Chinese. If someone else wants to help me out with this - fine. Otherwise, don't bitch.)
Inevitably, some players are going to want to get Jusenkyou curses. Transformation curses are very difficult to define as merits or flaws. As flaws all curses chare in common the trait that the characters can not control the transformations. That's where the similarities end however. A variety of factors need to be determined when deciding on a curse.
The first thing that must be done is to work a Jusenkyou curse into your background. Exactly what curse you take can be decided in one of two ways. The first is to just choose one, from the list below or from your own mind. Or you can roll on the chart below and take your chances. :-> Players and Storytellers can decide together what changes should be associated with each form. Alternatively, the Player's Guide to Ranma 1/2 will contain detailed information on each curse and the Jusenkyou Springs.
First roll one ten sided die, and then use one of the charts below. Then roll another ten sided die for the chart you've ended up on.
|3) Heito-uen-nii-chuan||"black pig"|
|6) Yaa-zu-nii-chuan||"wild duckling"|
|8) Shannen-nii-chuan||"virtuous man"|
|10) Chan-yui-nii-chuan||"giant octopus"|
Idea : Create a second character sheet for your transformed state.