Character Creation

Creating a character in Rapidfire can be done quickly, but that will just give you a bunch of stats and numbers. If you follow the process below, you will end up with a character that seem like more than just a few numbers on a page. The numbers on the page are required, so print out a character sheet (forthcoming) and start writing.

1. Character Concept

A character in Warbirds is a person with a unique advantage. While most people worry about day to day troubles of living their lives, PCs possess fighter planes and ply the skies in search of adventure and profit. Called Aces, Sky Jockeys, Fly-boys, or Knights of the sky, they are great heroes, wanderers, air pirates, mercenaries, treasure hunters, and living legends.

Your Pilot can be an ruthless air pirate, a devil-may-care mercenary, a treasure hunting opportunist, or a rich playboy bored with high society, just to name a few options. The choice is up to you, but you should clear your concept with the GM before proceeding. It might also help to collaborate with the other players to ensure that your characters will not be too similar.

2. Pick a Name

This is harder than it sounds. In fact, most players procrastinate and leave the name on the character sheet blank until the GM hassles them into a quick decision. I have put this step early in the creation cycle so that you can start thinking about it early and come to a well thought out decision. If you're totally lost, go to a baby naming website or go to a random page of any Ikea catalogue (this works better than you might think.) In addition to their regular given names, pilots have a long tradition of handing out call-signs to each other. This is done through a process known as a call-sign review board, where a pilot is given his new handle (as well as a large amount of alcohol) by his flying buddies. If your GM wants to preserve this tradition, then your call-sign will be given to your character in-game by the other PCs.

3. Build a Background

Decide where your character is from and figure out how he got to where he is now. Answer the following questions in brief, but don't be afraid to elaborate. The questions are not directed to you, but to your character. Think not only about what, but also how your character would answer.
-Where and when were you born?
-Who are your parents, where are they now?
-Do you have and brothers or sisters, where are they now?
-What was your childhood like? Happy, sad, lonely, hard, idyllic, crazy?
-What is your most vivid childhood memory? Why?
-Where, when, and how did you acquire your flight training and aircraft?
-Did you have a mentor? What was he/she like?
-Do you maintain relationships with your family?
-Do you have any grudges, enemies, rivals, or old scores to settles?
-What do you want most right now?
-What are your long term goals?

The questions could go on, but this short list encapsulates some of the most important bits of your character's history and life.

4. Assign Stats

I like to do this early in the creation process. It defines what your character’s strengths and weaknesses. Our custom ‘Rapidfire’ rules make stat selection a snap. In Rapidfire, characters only have three stats: Body, Mind, and Spirit. These three stats cover all of a character’s innate abilities. All three stats have a default value of -2, and are bought up with 7 stat points on a 1 for 1 basis up to a maximum of +2. Common ways to spend the points include: +1,0,0; +2,0,-1; +1,+1,-1; or +2,+1,-2. All of these combinations use all of the stat points. If you choose not to spend all of your stat points, the you can add double whatever you save to your skill points.

The nice thing about being an Ishinari is that you don't have to worry too much about these stats in combat. While in your Battle Remnant, you use the Situational Awareness (SA) for most rolls. SA is equal to Body+Mind+Spirit, and will be +1 for starting characters. The question is who you want to be when not covered in three tons of armour. Check out the rapidfire rules for stat descriptions.

5. Choose Skills

Skills in Rapidfire are bought just like stats, But where the default starting value for stats is -2, for skills it’s 0 (meaning your character does not possess the skill,) and goes up to level 6. Just like stats, skills act as a straight bonus to D6 rolls. At character creation, characters get a regional skill at level 1 for free, and have 10 skill points to spend however they wish. Skills cost their level, and 2 points per skill (giving level 2) is the normal starting maximum, but GMs may adjust this amount. Characters can choose any skill off the following list below. For a more detailed description of each skill, check out the skill list.

Social Sciences
Unarmed Combat

Not listed are the 2 Pilot Skills: Pilot and Gunnery. They are separate from regular skills and discussed in the Plane Creation rules.

As stated above, every character gets a free regional skill level 1. The regional skill represents things the character would have learned in their youth related to where they are from. Choose based on the character's nation of origin:

After the free skill, spend points however you wish. It is a very good idea to put points towards the awareness skill.

6. Secondary Stats

Your Character has 3 secondary stats. They are modified by your stats and skills. Your Secondary Stats are as follows:

3+Body+Dodge Skill+Shield (if any)



7. Choose Advantages and Disadvantages

Advantages and Disadvantages are the things that make your character unique that do not have a direct rules impact. These are things like Fame, Fortune, Beauty, Greed, Vanity, or a Bounty on your head. Advantages and Disadvantages come in two flavours: Minor, and Major. A minor advantage or disadvantage is enough to effect the game, but not enough to be character defining. Major advantages and disadvantages are character defining and can have a significant impact on game play. Every character is allowed, and encouraged, to take one major advantage, but must balance it with one major disadvantage. In addition, characters can take up to 3 minor advantages but must balance each with a minor disadvantage. For a non-inclusive list of sample advantages and disadvantages, go here.

8. Gear and Money

9. The Details

What does you character look like? How is he dressed? How does he speak? Does he have any preconceived notions or attitudes? Any major fears? Any major goals? Your character is not complete until you add the details. Make sure you have enough to give other players a good first impression, but don't worry if you don't have too much figured out in advance. Some of the most interesting aspects of character's personalities are often revealed in the middle of good roleplaying.

All Done… Almost

Congratulations, your Character is ready to take on the world, and it can be one hell of a world. You should equip yourself with a Plane Just to be safe.

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