Category:Werewolf Character Creation
From WoD Gotham
Cities are alien environments for which they are not suited, nor are they comfortable in them. For more information on specific rulings, please see Werewolf Systems.
Because of this, we have limited the amount of rural Garou in WoDG. The STs will not accept any concept which features a rural tribe being savvy at navigating the intricacies of human society or cities.
VERY IMPORTANT: All incoming players should have read Garou 101.
Some Fera are found in urban environments and are likely very plausible denizens of a city like New York. However, we are not and will not ever offer them as player characters. That is simply not a direction where we will head with this venue.
We recommend that you use the Werewolf New Player Quick Start as a supplemental guide to these rules. Note that WtA in WoDG is a suitable venue for these player types: Semi-Hardcore, and Hardcore. It is not a venue suitable for Casual RPers.
Now, before you continue to reading on the particulars of character creation take this rule of thumb and apply it to the entire process: Everything that you take in dots must be supported by the Step 1 Character Concept section directly below. If it doesn’t make sense or fit with that Character Concept section, then it doesn’t belong on your character sheet.
So without further delay, please find the rules for creating a werewolf character in WoDG below:
Step 1. Character Concept
Name, Age, Sex, Date of Birth
Ok. Self-explanatory. Please fill it in. Minimum is age is 18. Recommended age is 21 and over.
Note: At 18 in the United States, the character is still a minor in some respects. He can go to jail as an adult. He can vote. He can go to war. He can buy tobacco. He is just old enough to have consensual sex. He can purchase a firearm. He cannot gamble, loiter on a casino floor, drink alcoholic beverages, purchase alcohol, or get into a nightclub. He will be still seen as a child in society as few people tend to think that 18 year olds are more than children. This means that he will have negative adjustments to his social dealings and be excluded from settings. Flinging Gifts around constantly to avoid these sort of annoyances can be precarious. So while we understand that some people have a fetish for playing barely-legal characters, we don’t recommend it.
Character concept is the core of what your character is in a brief declarative statement or descriptor. It can be occupation, but usually that’s just part of it. Who you are isn’t just what you do. Most of us hate our jobs we don’t like to think of ourselves as the job title.
It functions as the skeleton framework on which all other aspects of your character is built, so take a moment as this definition will guide the entire rest of the character creation process. Also, you may want to take a look at the PC Census early on to see what is over or under represented in the chronicle already before you get your heart set on anything. All concepts and related characters to that concept must be your original creations.
Sample concepts include:
But I’m a Delicate and Uniquely Beautiful Snowflake!
Yes you are. Now get over yourself and write a damned concept up that’s in scope, you jackwagon!
There’s a reason why STs set boundaries rules and limitations on what they allow in game. And it’s not about making players miserable and telling them that they can’t play their über-buffy-vampire-slayer-kinfolk-former-technocrat-changed-garou-hippie-turned-priest-turned-fenrir-god-of-carnage! It’s about having a functional working platform that can give the whole venue a SL without having to run off after this group and that. The Staff have lives! We want to keep the groups cohesive and manageable, so you’ll be in scope or get another game. Period.
Now to the sweet and understanding players that really didn’t mean to upset the Staff with their Snowflake proposal we say this…
There are plenty of ways to write a unique and interesting character without resorting to badgering the STs into allowing you to be the one exception to the rule so you can feel “special”. One way is to spend time really considering your character concept, refine it and try to steer away from clichés or if you do go with a cliché recognize that it is one and have fun with it. Another is to take a look at some of the expanded offerings we have provided to our community in Backgrounds and Abilities. We decided to make them available just so you could toy with some new and fun combinations in character creation.
One final thought, being part of a community like this means that having concepts that work within a community is probably best. STs won’t make a habit of chasing after snowflakes and giving them scenes. Most one-on-one scenes with a ST will be few and far between and usually only provided with the Prelude, scenes with the Garou trying to gain Gnosis, or as a result of some unforeseen complication in a SL or scene. Most individual stuff will be handled through downtime.
So sorry little snowflakes. You’ll have to get with the program or you’ll just be miserable and SOL.
There will be no Character Concepts allowed that involve the player character starting with any lore in antagonists and other supernatural types. Characters will not have more than the basic understanding of what those groups are. Here are some broad generalizations:
- Pentex: Crazy ass corporate giants like this wield more influence and power than the even members of the G20! Fortunately there are uses for Glass Walkers – like sifting through the maze of industrial and financial red tape.
- Fomori: Mutated Wyrm ridden husks of their former selves. The only thing to do with them is put them down.
- Banes: Loathsome and despicable spirits too numerous and varied to mention. Seducing and corrupting is all their only purpose. Ours is to rip them to shreds.
- Black Spiral Dancers: Lost! An Abomination! Do not let it speak. Do not let it take another breathe. Kill it quickly!
- Fera: You know what? Fuck Garou guilt. We’re the Chosen Ones dammit!
- Other Tribes: Eh...yeah I know the general stereotypical stuff, but my tribe is best. Go us!
- Mages: Er…yeah. Keep them away. Keep them away from me. Keep them away from the fucking caern! I heard that some can be useful, but I’m not going to make like I’m at Costco trying out all the tasty demos before deciding what flavor to buy! I’m on a diet!
- Vampires: You know we’re savvy city slickers. We don’t hump trees and get a stiffy every time a leech crosses our path like our inbred country cousins. Leeches are small potatoes and not worth the headache stirring them up. Any city Garou with half a brain knows that.
Your character concepts and histories can involve a goal to study one or all of these groups, but you certainly cannot have your beginning character begin with the knowledge. That is born of careful study or experience. You will have to work for it ICly.
Also, we won’t be allowing concepts that involve the character working directly occupations directly in the public sector or in an industry that requires a lot of social skills and exposure to stressful situations with humans in proximity to them. Any occupation needs to be in line with the character’s Rage. Law enforcement, legal, judicial, bureaucratic, and governmental positions are really not appropriate. They are best filled by a Garou’s kinfolk who are then used as proxies.
VERY IMPORTANT: It is required that all players SUBMIT A CHARACTER CONCEPT PROPOSAL to the Storytellers prior to beginning work on a character sheet. This way you can conference with the Storytellers about what you intend to play and get your concept pre-approved so that you avoid too many hassles and re-writes during character creation. The last thing you want is to have to redo an entire character because the concept you picked was inappropriate. Do yourself a favor and avoid that headache!
Nature and Demeanor
These are personality archetypes that function a lot like a general psychological guide for your character. They are another measuring stick and descriptor of your character’s personality, behavior, goals, motivations, and general direction. A list of them can be found in Players Guide to the Garou pp. 172-177.
Homid is unrestricted. Lupus is banned. Metis is heavily restricted and requires a very thorough background and prior ST approval. Players playing metis are expected to be advanced WtA players which know the difference between a metis and a homid. Any metis characters played as though they were simply like homids with a genetic defect will be desanctioned. Further, metis are subject to closure at any time if their numbers become too high. Also, if you play a metis, you will be strictly subject to our Inactivity Policy. This is so that inactive players will not be able to hold hostage restricted slots if they do not intend on playing their characters. We do not allow metis Ahroun. Check with the PC Census to see if metis are currently available.
Choose the Auspice that best fits your character concept.
Some tribes are not appropriate for the setting and others are restricted. Please refer to the supplied list for current availabilities. Note that if you play a character of a restricted tribe, you will be strictly subject to our Inactivity Policy. This way, inactive players will not be able to hold hostage restricted slots if they do not intend on playing their characters. Check with the PC Census to see what tribes are currently available.
Furthermore, all characters from restricted tribes must specify in their character history why it is that they have ventured into the city. There are tons of plausible reasons to come into the city. There are fewer reasons to remain in the city and be counted among the urrah. This must be detailed. See: Residing In The Scab
VERY IMPORTANT: There will be no urbanized concepts accepted from rural tribes. If you want to play an urban character, then select one of the two urban tribes that are not restricted.
Note that you don’t have to create a Garou of a certain camp. Those are optional unless indicated otherwise. If you do choose a camp, only those indicated will be allowed.
We do make use of tribal weaknesses. Those are not optional.
Banned Tribes: Red Talons
|Black Furies||Restricted||Moon-Daughters, Our Order of Merciful Mother||-1 Difficulty to Frenzy when provoked by men.|
|Bone Gnawers||Unrestricted||Any camp save Hillfolk||+1 Difficulty to Social Rolls with other tribes.|
|Children of Gaia||Restricted||Servants of the Unicorn, The Patient Deed, Demeter's Daughters (2nd ed.), Angels in the Garden (2nd ed.)||Weak Veil: Witnesses at +4 on the Delirium Chart.|
|Fianna||Restricted||Of the two factions the less traditional Fianna should be represented in WoDG. Acceptable camps are Grandchildren of Fionn, Songkeepers, Brotherhood of Herne, Whispering Rovers||Low Self Control: All Willpower rolls are at +1 Difficulty.|
|Get of Fenris||Restricted||Fangs of Garm, Valkyria of Freya, The Hand of Tyr||Intolerance as per the Flaw|
|Glass Walker||Unrestricted||All||Weaver Affinity: Can't regain Gnosis in the wilderness.|
|Shadow Lords||Restricted||Lords of the Summit, The Children of Crow||Failure’s Dagger: Lose temporary renown when failing in a task that would have otherwise gained your character renown. The amount and type lost is equal to the type and amount gained if had the character been successful.|
|Silent Striders||Restricted||Harbingers, Seekers, Wayfarers||Haunted: Attract ghosts when botching a roll to step sideways.|
|Silver Fang||Restricted||House Wyrmfoe is found in the Northeast. Sun Lodge is more easily represented in cities as are Renewalists. Note: Silver Fangs must be from House Wyrmfoe.||Derangement - Depression does not qualify as a Derangement as it is more akin to the Garou mental state of Harano.|
|Stargazers||Restricted||The Zephyr (2nd ed.), The World Tree (2nd ed.)||Obsessive Mind Games - Failed Enigmas rolls triggers introverted obsession with mysteries.|
|Uktena||Restricted|| Earth Guides, Skywalkers, Web Walkers||Intense Curiosity. Willpower roll Difficulty 8 when called for by a ST.|
|Wendigo||Restricted||The Warpath, The Sacred Hoop, The Ghost Dance||Wheel of the Seasons|
Once your concept has been determined you are ready to start on your character's meat and potatoes.
Your character history should be in line with your concept. If you hand us a sheet with little information, we will send it back to you for clarification. What we are looking for is a detail of who and what your character is and why. All your stats should be born of this, not vice versa. In order for us to give you any starting information during the Sanctioning process we must know what your character has been doing as of late, what are his activities, goals, occupations, what is his façade is, etc. Look at pp. 98-99 and 102-104 in Werewolf: The Apocalypse, Revised Ed. for more information on some helpful questions to ask yourself when fleshing out a history.
For Garou, we require that you supply a psychological profile on your character. Garou aren't what they seem and employ a lot façades to the outside world in order to cope with all the challenges of being a Garou in an urban environment. Your character should present himself outwardly a lot differently than he what he is truly like internally. No one shares their skeletons in the closet at a drop of a hat. In short, we want to know that you know who your character is on the inside: what he wants, what he is like, and what challenges he faces.
A bare minimum history should include: Mundane life and past history, perhaps even family history, The First Change, Rite of Passage Present day, Key Figures in the Character’s past, the Character’s key present social network (details of allies, contacts, kinfolk, mentors, etc.), Character Motivation, Goals both short term and long, and the explanation of any unusual Traits like Merits and Flaws.
Finally, the character should be new to the city and trying to gain acceptance by the Sept. It simply makes no sense to have new player characters entering the setting as new sept mates who have always been part of the sept and the Nation when other player characters also in the sept have no basis for knowing them.
Little ST tip! Having quality over quantity is good. We don’t need to have a wordy history. A nice outline with key points works just fine. We love that.
Little ST :( Please don’t go there when it comes to histories where your character is a former Technocrat Lab Tech, Secretly Kinfolk, turned Vampire Blood Dolly, then changed to Garou, only to be ghouled at last or other silly thing. And please don’t make us frown and bang our heads against our desks because you’ve chosen to write a history where your character was captured by the Technocracy and Pentex at the same time and tortured by a BSD with a Malkavian lover who secretly had a Nephandic daughter that loved clown noses and now they all have joined forces to hunt him down with a plasma bazooka from hell and so he knows all about them and he’s a special snowflake! We’ve already addressed snowflakes and we’re addressing them again. No! Just no! You’re going to end up getting upset and getting us upset when we tell you to go spend time in rewrites. So save us all the trouble to begin with. No!
Step 2. Select Attributes
|Werewolf Starting Stats|
|Attributes 7/5/3||Abilities 13/9/5|
|Backgrounds 5||Gifts: 1 Breed, 1 Auspice, 1 Tribe|
|Willpower: by Tribe||Gnosis: by Breed|
|Rage: by Auspice||Renown: by Auspice|
|Rank: Cliath||Freebies 15|
Did You Know You Can Recycle?
Yes it’s about time that Werewolf: The Apocalypse made it official and went green.
If you have a favorite character concept or character that you used in another game, you can use it here. Just tweak your original idea so that it fits our guidelines and you’re ready to rock n’ roll.
So if you have a character that you really love, if you have a character that died prematurely in another game that you’d like to play again, if you just feel that you didn’t get to play a concept out fully, or if you’re just plain too lazy to think of something else…
Don’t worry! We recycle in WoDG!
No 5s in Attributes at all. Please don’t snowflake this, we will send it back for revision.
Step 3. Abilities
Abilities should never go above 3 for starting characters unless there’s a character concept that supports an expertise of some sort. For instance, if you are playing a medical doctor it’s perfectly logical to have Medicine at 4.
Now before you go nuts with the justification if a Combat Ability at 4 due to professional expertise we’re just going to smack that right down. No specialties at all for starting characters in Combat Abilities. If you’re concept denotes an ex-military type or a mercenary or a veteran, we’ll allow you to specialize in a non-combative support function. For instance, a sniper might specialize in Stealth. A former Army Ranger might have Survival at 4. A former spy might have Subterfuge at 4.
Every player character gets Garou Lore 2 and 2 dots in their character’s own Tribal Lore to start for free. Yay!
Note: Klaive Dueling and Kalindo are both considered Secondary Abilities, but cost the same as Primary Abilities.
Primal Urge has been limited to 1 for homids. 2 will be considered with an exceptional story. Metis may take up to 3 Primal Urge to start.
Step 4. Advantages
You have 5 dots in Backgrounds to spend. All of these points must make sense with your character concept and history.
Good news on Backgrounds for Garou: you don’t have the tribal restrictions. Just because the gloves are off there, don’t go crazy. Some tribes have stronger reasons for having backgrounds accessible to their members than others. Does that mean that if you’re playing a Bone Gnawer you can be Tony Stark or Warren Buffet? No. That means that you can take a couple of dots in Resources if you have a WELL DOCUMENTED reason for it. Does that mean that as a Silver Fang you HAVE TO take Pure Breed precisely at 3? No. You can get away with 1 or 2, but there will be consequences. Does that mean as a Glass Walker, you can’t have a mentor? Um no. Business people, techs, mobsters, and assorted influential movers and shakers have their mentorship programs same as anyone. Ever seen the Apprentice? Should your Glass Walker or Bone Gnawer be able to take Pure Breed then? Hell no!
If you still have questions after reading the wiki, place a post in the appropriate venue's proposal forum and the ST team will have a look. Please do not FPM.
There are some Backgrounds which we limit at the start and some we disallow completely in the WtA venue.
- Resources: may not be above 4 to start. 2 if the only source of income is from a settlement, award, investment, trust fund, etc.
- Retainers: may not be above 3 to start. These can be Kinfolk or human assistants like perhaps a secretary or driver, etc. PC Kinfolk are always counted as Retainers
- Pure Breed: heavily restricted and subject to capping.
- Kinfolk: No more than 2 for rural tribes to start. No more than 3 to start for urban tribes.
- Mentor: Mentors should not be in the greater New York Metropolitan area. Otherwise, they would be members of the Sept themselves.
- Rites: Dependent on Ritual knowledge rating. Beginning Rituals and Rites ratings no higher than 1 for Non-Theurges to start. Theurges limit is 3 for starting characters.
- Fetish: Banned at Character Creation.
- Touched: Banned
- Totem: Banned at Creation.
- Numen: Banned
- Caern: Banned
- Fate: Banned
- Spirit Heritage: No more than 2.
- Influence: No influence to start.
Supporting Characters: On Backgrounds and Adversarial Backgrounds that give your character access to NPCs, you will need to make a Character Sheet for them. This is done in our Character Creation System. Human Retainers and Followers all follow the rules on Mortal Character Creation. Kinfolk follow Kinfolk Character Creation Rules. See: NPC Creation
These supporting Character Sheets do not require lengthy histories. Their associations to your player character will be dealt with in your player character’s history.
1 Breed. 1 Auspice. 1 Tribe.
You can buy additional Gifts with freebies, but they may not be out of Tribe, Breed or Auspice.
We do accept Gifts from splat books so long as the Gifts are specific to either Breed, Auspice or Tribe. The only exception is Rage Across the Heavens. Gifts from that sourcebook are banned. Further, camp Gifts are not allowed at Character Creation.
Renown and RankRecord your character’s beginning renown based on Auspice. Your character is starting out as a Cliath.
Step 5. Last Touches
Record your character’s beginning Rage based on Auspice. Be very very careful with Rage ratings in a city. Remember if your character's Rage exceeds his Willpower, it will affect all social dealings with humans. With around 76% of the human population having Willpower below 6 and New York being so densely populated, the chances of having real issues every day with Rage ratings of over 5 are absolute. Even Rage ratings of 4 and 5 are problematic.
The absolute Rage limit for starting characters is 7. If you take a Rage of 7, you will be expected to RP out all the disadvantages at every turn. If you do not sufficiently do so, the Storytellers may give you warnings, reduce your character's Rage, and do other unpleasant things to you.
Record your character’s beginning Gnosis based on Breed. No more than 2 for Homid. Metis can take up to 4.
Record your character’s beginning Willpower based on tribe. No more than 7 to start.
NOTE: All character concepts will be Cliath characters. There will be no cub concepts accepted nor First Changes run by STs as part of a prelude for your character. Those are stories for your character history and are way too complex to handle in a single scene. All player characters will start out knowing who and what they are and the basics of Garou Society. PERIOD!
Merits and Flaws
Merits and Flaws should not exceed 7 points each. Werewolf characters can use Merits and Flaws from any venue so long as it is not specific to that venue. For instance, a Garou could not take Beacon of the Unholy!
Also if you have not already, it might be worth it for you to take a look at Backgrounds again and look at Adversarial Backgrounds. These special backgrounds function like Flaws and may be appropriate for your character concept.
Warning: Players must be prepared to play out all their stats in this Chronicle. With respect to Flaws, we will enforce them regularly. Don't take them if you're not willing to RP them.
Equipment, Residence, and Expanded Information
You’ll notice that we have provided you with a lovely character file with tabs and it’s all printable and everything. We like to keep everyone organized and have as much of your character as possible in one place.
Take a moment to fill out your equipment, detail your home, and add any other pertinent information.
If your character has taken the background Rituals, fill out and detail the Rites he has taken. If he has taken the Rite of Talisman Dedication, you will have to detail where and how each item appears in each form.
Note on Firearms: To have a Carry and Conceal License in WoDG, your character must either purchase the Firearms License Merit (2 pts. HtR PG pg. 112) or you may buy 2 dots in the Background Certification. The presence of neither on a character sheet will indicate that any firearms carried are carried illegally.
Further if neither are present on the character sheet, you must specify if your character is carrying arms completely without any permit or if he is at least in possession of a normal gun permit.
Step 6. Sanctioning, Prelude, and Getting in Game!
After you’re done with the character sheet, look at the box labeled Prelude.
We give every main character the chance to have a nice Prelude scene run by the STs, introducing the player character to the Sept of the Green. This is an optional feature. You can elect to have this handled in downtime for your character and just move on to play directly after getting sanctioned.
Select yes or no. IMPORTANT NOTE ON PRELUDES
You can then go to your Character Dossier to review your sheet and correct any boo boos. When you are satisfied, you can CREATE A SANCTIONING TICKET which will notify STs that your sheet is ready for review by the team.
The ST will give feedback and request any changes if applicable. Once everything is settled, the ST will respond to the ticket asking to schedule a prelude (if you said yes to prelude) and they will give you an info sheet with starting information.
If you selected no to the prelude, the ST may ask some additional questions to settle your character into the setting. Then you will get downtime information in your info sheet regarding your character’s introduction to the sept.
Or perhaps you wish him not to be introduced, then that information will be supplied as well.
That info sheet is the last entry for the sanctioning ticket and the ticket will be closed. Next time you log in, you will have a sanctioned icon and you can get in game. GAME ON!