An ability, spell, rules change, or other game mechanic that improves a character's capabilities.
A longer story told by chaining or linking a number of modules together. Campaigns almost always require multiple sessions to complete.
The persona being played by a player within the context of a game. Connected to a Character Sheet.
The document containing a character's basic Stats and Special Ability.
A specific die roll made to determine a character‘s success or failure at a task, using a number of dice based on the number of dice in a dice pool. A few things to remember when making a check:
- If you would rather roll the dice in your LUCK Pool, you may. See LUCK for the rules.
- If you do not have any dice in a pool, you must choose to either roll LUCK or automatically fail the check.
- If you roll all sixes on a given roll, you add a die to your LUCK pool, up to a maximum of 5 dice.
The "main area of expertise", “role”, or "job" for a player character. The chosen class typically affects what skills and abilities the player character can learn and use. Classes usually incorporate a fixed set of abilities appropriate to the fiction the class represents.
Any harm that comes to characters is usually expressed as damage. When a Character takes damage, they subtract the corresponding number of Hit Points (HP) from their total. If a Character runs out of Hit Points (HP) they go unconscious. If all Characters run out of HP, the party dies.
A group of dice all rolled at once. Notated by the number of dots next to a given Stat.
A positive or negative element which affects a character, almost always causing modifiers to abilities or allowable actions. Example: stunned, poisoned, hasted, unconscious, etc. Sometimes called a "status effect" or, depending on the context, a "buff" or "debuff".
A system for improving characters in role-playing games. Typically, a character will be awarded experience points for succeeding at challenges, like defeating a monster or completing a mission. After a certain amount of collected experience points, the player character will improve, usually by increased stats and HP.
Hit Points (HP)
A number which is used to track how much damage a character can take in combat before collapsing. Subtract from the total until a character reaches zero.
When a player sitting at the game table speaks, thinks, or acts from their character's perspective, this is known as behaving "in character." It does not necessarily imply theatrical acting, just that the statements or actions are the characters in the fictional world, not the players in the real world.
The relative power of a Character, based on the number of non-LUCK dots on the Character Sheet. As a Character earns Experience Points (XP), they will have the opportunity to Level Up, resetting their Special Ability and expanding their Stats.
Used to refer to a clump of related changes that happen at once when a character grows or advances after earning a minimum number of Experience Points (XP). When the Storyteller instructs you to Level Up, do the following 5 steps in order:
- Roll a d6. Add that number of HP to your max.
- Reset your HP to the max. If you are already higher than your new max HP, keep the extra points.
- Add a dot to the stat of your choice. You will roll one additional die in that stat going forward.
- Add a LUCK die to your LUCK pool.
- Reset your Special Ability, if expended (you may use it again between now and when you level up next).
Hand-to-hand combat, hand held weapon combat, or to close proximity fighting. Based in the STR Stat.
Things discussed about the rules by the GM and players as opposed to things happening in-game (by the characters). Also, to calculate success/failure of an action by reviewing character stats and game mechanics, as opposed to acting based on character personality and what the ‘character’ knows.
A single story, often short enough to be completed in one session. Often makes up one smaller piece of larger story with a beginning and an end, but may be stand alone. Contrast with Campaign.
The result of the actual dice roll, before any modifications are made.
Non-Player Character (NPC)
Any creature in a game that is not controlled exclusively by a player. Most often run by the Storyteller, although in certain cases a player may determine actions of a Non-Player Character.
Optional Rules or Advanced Rules
Published rules used at the discretion of the Game Master. Rules not designed to be part of base rules, but can be used, (often by experienced players), to alter game play.
Out of Character
An action or discussion made between GM and Players not meant to be performed by characters in game. Also, any action that is not in line with the character's personality.
A general term for the group formed by the Characters.
The physical person playing the game - i.e. not the character(s) or roles they play.
Player Character (PC)
Any character that is played by a player, not the Storyteller. The PCs are the center of attention in any RPG, and the game revolves around their choices.
Ranged combat or an attack that takes place over a distance. Based in the DEX Stat.
Role-Playing Game (RPG)
RPGGeek defines this as a game fundamentally possessing four characteristics:
- Defined set of rules.
- Allows the players to take on the role of a character.
- Allows the players a strong measure of free will to choose what their characters do.
- The actions chosen by the players shape and influence the story which unfolds during the game.
A single roll of the dice, or the results of a die roll.
Unit of time in a game which generally limits the number of actions a character can take before another creature / character can act.
A single meeting of a role-playing group.
Supernatural abilities possessed by a character, typically falling into two types:
- Static Abilities are abilities that apply without needing to be used or activated by the Player
- Activated abilities are abilities that must be used or activated by the Player, typically limited to one use between each Level Up.
Natural, in-born characteristics shared by all characters, such as strength or wisdom. In the plural, statistics (stats for short) refers to the information on a character sheet.
Term referring to the person runs the adventure, tells the story, determines what action resolutions mean, etc. for their players. This person, (or persons), runs also all of the Non-Player Characters (NPCs).