Character Creation

Before anything else, you must create a character. Everything that happens later on will, to some extent, depend on the choices you make when creating your character, so this is a very important step.

There are many ways to go about making a character in Infinite Horizons.

Generally, you should have some initial concept of what your character will be like, and then model the character (selecting appropriate initial attribute levels and skills) to fit this concept. The variation occurs in the character conceptualization. Some people prefer to play characters much like themselves. Others play characters from books or movies. Many have some sort of character they prefer above all others. Infinite Horizons is designed to allow you to create almost any character you want, within reasonable limits.

Random Characters

Some people prefer to play a character which is randomly determined. While, strictly speaking, this is impossible in Infinite Horizons, there is a compromise that can be made. Pick a few attributes which you want to randomly determine, or roll a d10 a few times to let it pick them for you. Then roll an appropriate set of dice to randomly determine these attributes. You may need to roll a few times for some attributes in order to get values which are allowed (see Limitations under Initial Attributes). Finally, you will need to manipulate the remaining attributes (possibly slightly altering your randomly determined values) in order to get a character which is "legal" according to the rules (see Initial Attributes).

Game Balance

There are some players (often called mini-maxers or munchkins) who like to exploit rules to make the most devastatingly effective character possible. They will take advantage of any loophole to benefit themselves. Some gaming systems try to circumvent this and enforce some sort of balance in the game by making the rules as tight as possible, not allowing for any loopholes. However, this often makes the game much less realistic and more forced, and these people will still find a way around it.

We have gone to the other extreme. Infinite Horizons attempts to be as realistic as is possible (while remaining relatively simple), and in life, there really are "loopholes" people may exploit to make themselves better than others. The biggest such loopholes involve training of all sorts, including schools (for mental training) and fitness programmes (for physical training). Through effort, people can, and regularly do, make themselves stronger, faster, or more knowledgeable, and this is reflected in the game.

The reason we mention this here is to attempt to discourage players from abusing this policy when creating characters. Just as we aim for realism in the rules, you should aim for realism in your characters. Sure, you could make a character who trains at something for ten hours every day, but think how boring that would be. Even Olympic and professional athletes don't get that obsessive. Any character who does this sort of thing is going to be unrealistic, and therefore less enjoyable to play, and less enjoyable to be around. You will have less fun and other players (and the GM) will quite possibly get annoyed. Part of the fun is improving your character through regular actions, rather than going to ridiculous extremes to make yourself super-human.

It is easy enough with this system to make a character who is incredible in one or two areas, although they will have to sacrifice other areas to do so. This should be more than enough to satisfy most players. (How many things are you the best in the world at?) There is no need to be the best at everything. Don't even bother trying, and everyone will enjoy themselves more.

How to Create a Character

(the quick version) There are six basic steps involved in the birth of a new character. They will be listed here briefly. Each step also has a full section describing it more fully.
  1. Choose a race for your character. The options available to you will depend on which supplements are being used for the campaign in which the character will be participating.
  2. You should make up a character history. This may be done at any point in the creation process; however, doing it early will assist you in the other steps (especially steps five and six).
  3. The race you choose will determine the possible ranges for your character's initial attributes. Work out the attributes for your character and record them on your character sheet.
  4. Your character will need a name, gender, height, weight, etc. A name can be anything. It can be a real name, something out of mythology (Merlin, Athena) or history (Attila, Cleopatra), your favourite book or movie character (Frodo, Dirty Harry), or you can make one up (Clahrhin, Blat the Brave). Gender will usually be male or female, although some races may be sexless, asexual, trisexual, and so on. Weight and height should fall within the ranges given in the race description (for example, most full-grown humans are between five and seven feet tall, but a rare few are as short as three feet, or as tall as almost nine).
  5. Most game systems use some method to indicate a character's moral fibre. In Infinite Horizons, a system called commitment ratings is used to give a rough indication of how a character might react in various situations. You will pick (or randomly determine) values for the various commitment ratings to match the inclinations of your character.
  6. Your character will know how to do many things. These will be reflected by the skills you choose for your character. There may be a few limits on the skills you choose (if you were a fish, you would not be allowed to take long-distance running as a skill), but for the most part you get to pick what you want. As with your choice of race, the skills available will depend on the setting of the game and which supplements are being used.

Notes

  • You should have your GM approve your race selection and character history before continuing with the creation process. It will be up to him to decide whether or not such a character would fit into his plans for the campaign.
  • It is very important to remember that a player is not a character, and a character is not a player. You may be a very intelligent person (you are playing this game, after all), but your character may be bone-stupid. One of the biggest challenges of role-playing is to play characters as they actually are, not as you are (unless you make them just like you).
After all this is done, your character will be ready for play. All you need to do is pick some equipment out of the list of what is available to you, which may be determined by the setting of the game, your character history (we told you it could be important), your current location, what the GM decides would be available, and how much of the local currency you possess.

[an error occurred while processing this directive] Contents Introduction Characters Skills Combat Other Equipment Skill Descriptions Race Descriptions Appendices