Character Creation Rules

Fire in the Sky is a game of ordinary people trying to overcome paranormal threats. Your characters are drawn from the ranks of state and federal law enforcement and special investigations – they are highly trained and well-equipped, but no less fragile than any other human. Death is a very real possibility every time you go into the field, so don’t be surprised if you find yourself on this page again as the campaign progresses.

To take some of the sting out of losing your character, the character creation process employs substantial randomization that can yield significant benefits for good rolls. Hopefully the thrill of gambling with a new person’s life will ease your frustration a bit. Depending upon how successful (or not) your characters have been as the game progresses, newly made characters may start at a higher level than level 1, or may begin the game with other benefits. Or they may have to start all over at the beginning. The ball is in your court.

To help even further, you will have four development points. These can be spent to re-roll any dice during the character creation process. You can even spend multiple points on the same roll if you like, but you have to take the new result – the old one is discarded, even if it is better. At the end of character creation, for every two unspent development points, you gain one bonus certification. If you have an odd number of development points, the extra ones are wasted.

Naturally, the GM will have to be present when any rolls for your character are made to verify them and keep track of development points used.

Step 1: Attributes

Your character represents the type of person who makes it into federal or state law enforcement – probably above-average, but not necessarily a hero. To determine your attributes, roll a 3d6 six times and assign the results to your attributes as you see fit.

Step 2: Background Generation

A significant part of your character’s background will be determined randomly through the following tables. You will notice that many results on these tables can grant your character significant advantages or disadvantages; this section may be a good place to spend development points. Some of these results may also have effects on your character that are not written down and may not be immediately obvious.

Click here for the backgrounds tables.

Step 3: Specialization

Classes in Fire in the Sky are known as Specializations. These represent your character’s prior background and the training it has provided. Like a class, your specialization helps determine your character’s skills, hit dice, and saving throws. However, instead of providing a list of pre-determined class abilities, your specialization instead gives you access to different categories of Certifications, which are highly specific skills your character has trained at and mastered. The available specializations are:

Medical Science
Psychological Profiling
Computer Scientist
Law Enforcement Officer

Again, your specialization just refers to your character’s prior training – it doesn’t necessarily refer to the job he or she is in when the campaign begins.

Step 4: Choose Your Feats

Your character begins the game with two feats, which can be chosen from the list here.

Step 5: Starting Equipment

Your character starts with a wealth score of 2d4+2, plus whatever wealth bonuses you obtained through your backgrounds or feats. You may purchase your starting equipment using the D20 Modern Equipment chapter as a guide. Because wealth works a bit differently in D20 Modern, here is a quick primer of the rules:

Whenever your character wants to buy something, you first compare your wealth score with the purchase DC of whatever you want to buy. If your score is greater than or equal to that DC (and the DC is less than 15), you can buy that item without making a roll and without reducing your wealth score – your character has enough money and/or income that buying one of these objects does not make a significant dent in it. If you start buying a lot of them, though, the GM may rule that it reduces your wealth score due to the volume, but buying one isn’t a problem.

If the purchase DC is higher than your wealth score, you must make a wealth check to buy this object. You roll a d20 and add your wealth score into the result. If you rolled lower than the DC, the object is beyond your means at this time, although you can spend additional time shopping (equal to the wealth DC in hours), and then make another wealth check to try again. If you rolled higher or equal to the purchase DC, you buy the object, but your wealth score decreases according to the following chart:

Purchase DC Wealth Score Decrease
15 or Higher 1 Point
1-10 Points Higher Than Current Wealth 1 Point
11-15 Points Higher Than Current Wealth 1d6 Points
16 or More Points Higher Than Current Wealth 2d6 Points

The lowering wealth score represents going in to debt or depleting your finances to purchase the object. You can usually take a 10 or 20 on a wealth check, but if you take a 20, it requires 20 times longer than normal to shop for the object.

Finally, in addition to equipment you own, your characters may use certain equipment provided by your police department or Federal agency, but this equipment must be usually checked out of an armory or motor pool, and can only be used in appropriate circumstances (without breaking the law, that is). And it must be returned when you are finished, making it less useful than personally owned equipment, generally, for a vigilante paranormal hunter.

Character Creation Rules

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