Character Generation

Feb 10, 2015 8:14 pm
Hullo, folks,

The name on the tin says it all. This is the thread where we'll create characters and go through the game system process.

Please don't post anything here until I start the character generation process. Thanks. :)
Feb 14, 2015 11:10 pm
Hullo, folks,

Okay, first things first...


There are just a few guidelines and limitations I want to set on characters for the game.

Right off the bat, please check out the Basic Premise of the PbP, found here on the forums (

First of all, the game will start in either 2007 or 2008 (the year that PRIMEVAL debuted for most of us, and the second series as well), but it is possible that for each character who is not native to the modern day, the game will start in the time period and place from which the character originates. In other words, if your character hails from the Roman Empire in the year 33 BC, that will be the game year and the place where the character will start the PbP campaign. If your character comes from Inverness, Scotland circa 1745, that will be the time and place where your character starts. This rule is not set in stone, and there will be exceptions to it. However, don't worry, as needless to say the Moderator fully intends to bring you all together (for the most part) during the course of the game.

Second, none of the starting player characters may take on certain roles or character types from the period of the PRIMEVAL tv series after Series 2 at my discretion. As I said, this will be at the Moderator's discretion, but a player could somehow convince the Moderator to let their characters be from verboten time periods and alternate PRIMEVALverse timelines.

Third, characters will be created using the basic system provided in the Primeval RPG Roleplaying Game Core rulebook. While there are several supplements for the game, rules for Character Creation from those supplements may only be used for the purpose with the Moderator's permission. This is to keep the starting player characters on even ground and relatively balanced. (Of course, if your character should perish or be retired at
some point during the game, the new character that you create can certainly be created with the additional rules that exist at the time.) Any new additions from websites or other such material can only be used with the approval of the Moderator.

Fourth, none of the players characters should be significantly younger or older than the norm, with the exception of taking certain Traits such as the Experienced and Inexperienced Traits. (Exceptional circumstances would be the only reason the Moderator could foresee this changing.) Players joining the game later on will not receive special dispensations in this regard, but that is a function of other elements and may change depending on the status of the game at the time.

Fifth, Psychic abilities and the like are *not* available to players and their characters in the Primeval RPG, and therefore are a moot point. In the event that such abilities are introduced in a Primeval RPG supplement, player characters created from that time onward may possess Psychic abilities, but these must be approved by the Moderator before character generation proceeds too far.

And Finally, Sixth, no player character may start with any items that are deemed Future Tech or other such items or devices unless such items fit within the constraints of the character Background and History, and the character in such a case must have the appropriate Skills and the Future Tech Trait to possess and operate said items, except in the case where such Future Tech items were "obtained" by the character through other means, and these Future Tech items must be approved by the Moderator. Furthermore, no player characters may start with an item of Future Tech unless the Moderator approves such an item.

I trust no one has any problems with these limitations on player characters for the start of the game. Questions and comments on this subject and others of relevance are welcome, of course. :)
Feb 14, 2015 11:22 pm
Hullo, folks,

Since the Gamers' Plane website does not have a File section of any kind, other than for characters created and posted up, and there are certain files and information that you will need for the purpose of character creation and the like, I've taken care of this by posting up a Primeval PbP set of files over on my Dropbox account.

The files are:

Character Sheet:

Character Sheet (Low ink):

Background & History:

Skills List:

Traits List:

You'll find two versions of the Character Sheet (one low-ink, the other not), a master Skills list, a Good and Bad Traits list, and and a character Background and History template format that I hope players will use. (Note: Please use the costs on the master Traits list, since I've changed a couple of them), We'll talk about the use of each of these Files at the various character generation steps as we go. (And I really hope the link works!)
Last edited February 20, 2015 3:56 pm
Feb 14, 2015 11:44 pm
Hullo, folks,

Okay, let's get started on Character Creation for the PbP! :)


The first step for each of the players who is playing in the PRIMEVAL: Tales of the Anomalies PbP game is to come up with a Character Concept. The Character Concept should be no longer than two (2) sentences. This could be something as simple as, "I'm a biologist from London who works for the Anomaly Research Centre (ARC)", to something as complex as "I'm a 22-year-old Victorian woman from a good family who escaped through an Anomaly to the future to avoid marrying a horrible old man, and now find myself part of the Anomaly Research Centre (ARC) operation".

As Moderator, I would prefer if you would post the Character Concept to me here on the Gamers' Plane forums in Private Mail, and not to the Character Generation or Character Discussion threads, first for approval. The reason for this is that I would rather approve a player's Character Concept without it being in the public forums first, as this way it prevents multiple potential Character Concepts from making things confusing in the public forums, and second, because any secrets about the Character Concept that you don't want other players/characters knowing about should not be discussed in the public forums. Once the Moderator has approved your Character Concept, you should post it to the Character Generation thread (which is the thread where player characters will be created for the game) and possibly over to the Character Discussion thread, where players can discuss character concepts, possible connections between player characters (and potentially some NPCs that characters want to have dealings with, such as dependents, mentors, and the like), and whatnot.

Needless to say, the idea of making the Character Concept public once approved is so that players do not duplicate character types and the like. Once folks have Character Concepts approved and posted here in the appropriate thread(s), the Moderator will make sure that all players have a bit of time to establish potential connections to each other or not. Hope this meets with everyone's approval.

Also, please see the Character Creation Guidelines and Limitations post (earlier in this thread) for some more information and guidelines on Character Creation.

I'm looking forward to seeing what folks come up with for their characters! :)
Feb 17, 2015 5:33 pm
Hullo, folks,

For those who have completed the Character Concept step of character generation, and had their Character Concept approved, it is time to move on to Step Two.


While the rules of the Primeval RPG are seemingly set up so that players create the game numbers for the characters first, and then proceed to do the background, history, and personality of the character, that isn't in keeping with how I perceive roleplaying games, and certainly doesn't fit how a Play by Post (PbP) game should work, since the emphasis is on roleplaying and not game mechanics.

Therefore, the second step in character generation for the Primeval PbP game is that of creating the character background, history, and personality. My personal preference for this step is for players to write up a character background, history, and personality for their characters using the format given in the material below.

I don't expect the level of detail necessarily found in these write-ups to be significantly detailed, but that is up to you, the player, and how much background and "character" one wants to put into this. I do, however, want each character to have a unique *tagline*, something that is a typical quote or sample of dialogue for that character.

We're going to take a guideline similar to the approach found in the DOCTOR WHO: ADVENTURES IN TIME AND SPACE rpg for this. As a general rule, the player background and history should be written up something along the following lines:

CHARACTER NAME: This one should be obvious. Please include any nicknames or whatever that is appropriate here.

CHARACTER CONCEPT: Please put the Character Concept that was approved by the Moderator here.

PLACE IN HISTORY: This section includes information about the time period that the character comes from. This can be as simple as "London, England, Earth October, 2007", to "From the last human outpost on the Gondwana continent in the Jurassic epoch, 198 million years ago." Up to you. Do not skip this section, even if the character is from the modern day.

As complete a description as possible about the appearance of the character, including height and weight (if possible), hair and eye colour, general build, the typical clothing and items that the character wears and/or has, and that sort of thing. If it makes you feel good, put a weight for the character in. Any interesting aspects about the character's physical description should be here. Note: If you wish, you can also include a photo of your character if someone out there looks like the character should look. Furthermore, height and weight should be in cms. and kilos respectively.

A one- or two-sentence description of the character's personal goal(s) in life. What it is the character wishes to achieve in life. We're not talking short-term here, either. While it can be short and snappy, the more detail, the more Story Points are possible. :)

What is the character like? This section should be a good ten to fifteen lines of text, and should give a good assessment of the personality of the character. And remember some of what you write here may be going into your Traits section! Don't skimp on this, as the more material you put here, the more likely it is to give me something to work with in terms of later on giving you Story Points!

This is the section that provides the history of the character, and his or her background. Make this as detailed as you like, and provide a decent amount of information here. However, the history section needs to be at least twenty-five lines of text, okay? Don't provide a skimpy background, and make sure to give the Moderator a guideline as to why you're part of the ARC or part of the Chronos Society. And if you're not yet part of either, that should be in here, too! Heck, a guideline as to why one them will recruit you into their ranks, if you're not part of their group already, would be appreciated.

You can find the master file for this material up on my Dropbox site. Here's the URL again.

Character Background and History:

These player character backgrounds, histories, and personalities should be sent to me at my e-mail address (which you each should now have, if you've received the files), or you can send this to me in a PM here on the forums. Do *NOT* post it to the forums themselves, unless you want all the other players (and their characters) knowing the details of your character. And they should be done up as a text file in the body of the message, if possible and preferably, in the e-mail. Any questions or comments about stuff can be posted to the forums in the Character Discussion thread if the writer feels it should be mentioned or seen by the gamers on the PbP forums, otherwise they can be sent to me at the e-mail addy already mentioned.

Note that once the backgrounds, histories, and personalities of the characters are approved by the Moderator, then and only then, the players can proceed to the number crunching of the game. However, that's still a bit in the future, so...we'll talk about that later.

I'll be giving all of the players for the game a reasonable amount of time to write these up, but I'm assuming that you all would like to start playing the game sooner rather than later, right? :) Therefore, I would appreciate it if each player can have the final version of the character background, histories and personality completed as soon as possible, please. If the process for the this takes a bit longer, due to time constraints, real life, holidays or the like, that is fine, too, if necessary.

Questions or comments on this are now welcome. :)
Last edited February 20, 2015 3:59 pm
Feb 19, 2015 4:35 pm
Hullo, folks,

Before going into the game numbers part of Character Generation, just a few things.


Future Tech

As far as Future Tech is concerned, while these devices and items are cool and all that, a player who wants such items for the game needs to justify their starting with these items (and if they've created them, they better have the Skills and abilities to do so) in their character Backgrounds and Histories. When it comes to any serious major Future Tech, however, no player character should start with one, but justifying such is not out of the question. However, let me make it clear from the start that they will unbalance the game, and this is not desirable. Besides, don't you want to earn such Future Tech, or acquire them through the actual play and the like? :)


Insofar as Equipment and equipping your characters is concerned, bear in mind that this *is* PRIMEVAL we're emulating here. Unlike the Doctor Who roleplaying game, equipment and the like has no cost, per se, but rather an Availability (Rare, Uncommon, Unique, and so forth). Think in those terms about your Equipment and Gear when we get to the game numbers and the like about your characters. Furthermore, the Primeval RPG utilises a Trappings mechanic, whereby for each Skill that you possess at a certain level, you receive gear and equipment relevant to the Skill in question. We will talk about this aspect of the game once we're closer to the game mechanics aspects of your characters. While you will certainly have access to all sorts of clothes, items, and equipment in the place where you live or the place where you work, bear in mind that most characters in PRIMEVAL style stories and adventures don't carry around everything but the kitchen sink with them - unless they've gone through an Anomaly! I won't burden you with Equipment lists and the like, but you should have for your characters the typical stuff that he or she would have on a normal basis. And be warned, if you overburden your character with Equipment and the like, I will enforce some sort of Encumbrance rules and limits. :) Okay? :)
Feb 20, 2015 10:00 pm
Hullo, folks,

Since we've reached the point where most of the players have finished up the Character Background and History, I'm pleased to announce that the next step of character creation is ready to commence.

For those who have completed the Character Background and History step of character generation, it is time to move on to Step Three. This one is the long one (and thus this post is very long).

The third step in Character Generation is creating the Character Game Statistics and Numbers. The guidelines for this process follow below.


A. All players must submit their character game statistics showing how all the game values have been purchased through the use of their points. This applies to all areas of character generation, not just the use of points derived from Bad Traits.

B. It is preferable that all player character game statistics be submitted on the Character Template that can be found in the Dropbox files a this link:

The file is a plain text file. It is preferable that no player send the game mechanics to the Moderator in any other format, please! These files should be sent to the Moderator at the e-mail address to which I sent folks these files (before I got Dropbox working properly) or in a PM to the Moderator here on the PRIMEVAL RPG PbP forums. Please do *NOT* send the game statistics for your characters to the forums proper themselves.

Note that players can, if they wish, send the game statistics for their character in a format that is similar to that found for characters in the Primeval RPG rulebook (such as found for Nick Cutter and the other characters presented therein), or as per the example presented in the PRIMEVAL RPG section of the Cubicle 7 forums, as per the following character:

In the example above, please concern yourself only with the game statistics section, and not the write-up and the like. Please note that the difference between this character and the ones for the PRIMEVAL PbP game is that players in the PRIMEVAL RPG PbP game are expected to account for *all* expenditures they make, for each set of game statistics.

Also, to make the Moderator's life simple, please submit all character game stats in plain text format as part of the message that you send to the Moderator, if possible. Thank you. :)

In addition, two other files will be necessary for those players who do not have a copy of the Primeval Roleplaying Game Rulebook. These are the summaries of Skills and Traits. These files can also be found in the Dropbox files section, and are called

Skills List:

Traits List:

and should be downloaded by players who require them.

C. While I am loathe to impose a deadline for the submission of game statistics for the player characters, I really do want to get this game and actual play off the ground sooner rather than later, so am asking that you submit your game statistics no later than ten (10) days after the acceptance of the player character final Background, History, and Personality sections. Please try and adhere to this submission restriction date, although exceptions will be made.

D. Character Creation will use the steps that are found in the Primeval Roleplaying Game rulebook, with exceptions as noted below. No other game material may be used for this purpose, except at the discretion of the Moderator.

1. Each player will decide on a Character Concept for the character that he or she wishes to play. This should be no more than one or two sentences, and must be approved by the Moderator before the player may proceed further. (Note: In order to have reached the stage of Character Statistics and Number generation, the player must have already done this.)

2. Each player must write up a Background and History about their player character. (Note: In order to have reached the stage of Character Statistics and Number generation, the player must have already done this.)

3. Each player has a total of 42 Character Points to allocate between Attributes, Skills, and (Good and Special) Traits.

3a. A player may assign no more than 24 points to the character's Attributes.

3b. Any points assigned in excess of the 42 Character Points must be paid for/bought off with Bad Traits.

4. The player must adhere to the guidelines below for the purchase of Attribute points for their character.

4a. The player must assign at least 1 point into each Attribute. No character may begin play with an Attribute of 0.

4b. The player should assign no more than 5 points to any Attribute. No player may start with an Attribute at 6 without the Moderator's express permission.

5. The player must adhere to the guidelines below for the purchase of Skill points for their character.

5a. There are a total of 13 Skills in the Primeval RPG, but a player does not have to assign any points to every Skill. Thus, some Skills the character lists on the sheet may be at zero (0).

5b. The player should assign no more than 5 points to any Skill. No player may start with a Skill at 6 without the Moderator's express permission. Note that this does not apply to an Area of Expertise (AoE). Since these add +2 to any Skill, if the player takes a Skill level at 5, and purchases an AoE (see below), then the AoE of the Skill would be at 7.

5c. Areas of Expertise (AoEs) in a Skill may only be purchased once the Skill itself is at 3. Each AoE costs the player 1 Character Point. No character should begin with more than two (2) Areas of Expertise in any given Skill.

5d. Note that a player may only take the Quantum Physics Area of Expertise of the Science Skill with the permission of the Moderator.

5e. Note that a player may only take the Future Technology Area of Expertise of the Technology Skill with the permission of the Moderator.

6. The player must adhere to the guidelines below for the purchase of Good Traits.

6a. Note that a player may only choose the Anomaly Sense Good Trait with the permission of the Moderator, and this Trait is considered a Major Trait, not Minor as listed in the Primeval RPG rulebook.

6b. If the Favourite Gun/Gadget Good Trait is chosen by the player for their character, the gun/gadget in question must be specified and justified at that time as well.

6c. Note that a player may not choose the Future Tech Good Trait without the approval of the Moderator, and this is not a Trait that the Moderator wants to encourage players to begin the game with.

6d. If the Hobby Good Trait is chosen by the player for their character, the hobby in question must be specified and justified at that time as well.

6e. If the Instinct Good Trait is chosen by the player for their character, the instinct in question must be specified and justified at that time as well. For those players who do not possess or own a copy of the Primeval RPG rulebook, please contact me in PM on the PbP forums for more information about how this Trait works.

7. The player must adhere to the guidelines below for the purchase of Special Traits, both Good and Bad.

7a. Note that a player may only choose the Experienced or Team Player Special Traits for their character with the approval of the Moderator, and must justify these Traits as well.

7b. A player may choose to make the character younger or less experienced than a normal starting character. In this case, the player should take the Inexperienced Bad Special Trait with the approval of the Moderator.

The Inexperienced Trait, which is taken somewhat from the DOCTOR WHO RPG, works as follows:

Special Bad Trait

While the character creation rules are suited to normal characters, you may find that this doesn't reflect very inexperienced or younger characters. Taylor Craig would be a great example of this, as she is still a young girl and doesn't have a lot of life experience before the events that sent her into the Silurian time period. However, she has heart and spirit, which is reflected in having a larger Story Point pool, allowing her to keep up with Nick Cutter and the others in very dangerous situations.
Effect: Inexperienced is a Special Bad Trait that costs 4 Character Points. In return, the character's maximum Story Point pool is increased by 3. This Trait can be purchased additional times for even less experienced characters, though this will have to be approved by the Moderator. If, however, through experience during the game the character's Skills and total Character Points increase to compensate for the cost and reduction from this Trait, the character's maximum Story Points are reduced to the normal level.

8. Each player may purchase one or more Bad Traits. The Bad Traits will need to be purchased if the player has exceeded the original 42 Character Points used for creating the character, or to give the player additional Character Points that can be used to purchase additional Attribute and Good/Special Traits.

8a. Note that it is recommended that players take no more than 6 points of Bad Traits for their characters, as this may encumber the character too much, and may potentially render the character unplayable.

8b. If the Dark Secret Bad Trait is chosen by the player for their character, the dark secret in question must be defined at this time, and should be explained and justified in the character's Background and History.

8c. If the Eccentric Bad Trait is chosen by the player for their character, the eccentricity must be defined at this time, and may require explanation in the character's Background and History.

8d. If the Emotional Complication Trait is chosen by the player for their character, this complication must be defined at this time, and may require explanation in the character's Background and History.

8e. Note that a player may only choose the Time Shifted Bad Trait for their character with the approval of the Moderator, and must justify this Trait as well.

9. If the player does not spend all 42 Character Points when creating the character, any leftover points are allocated as Experience Points. If the player has purchased Bad Traits, but still has leftover points, due to lack of spending on Attributes, Skills, and/or Good or Special Traits, these are also allocated as Experience Points.

* Note: As a House Rule, several additional Good and Bad Traits are available for player use. Players may suggest and submit new Traits for their characters, but these are subject to the approval of the Moderator. The summary list of the additional Traits available in the Moderator's House rules are available in the Skills List document found at Dropbox (the link is above).

10. The player determines the starting number or Story Points that their character begins with.

10a. The default starting Story Points for a player character in the game is 12.

10b. The character will have less than 12 Story Points if the character has the Experienced Special Trait.

10c. The character will have more than 12 Story Points if the character has the Inexperienced Special Trait.

11. Each player should then finish off the character by putting the Finishing Touches to their character. The guidelines for this process are shown below.

11a. If the player has not determined the Appearance for their character, they should do so at this time.

11b. The player should determine the starting possessions and equipment for their character, within the guidelines specified in the Primeval Roleplaying Game rulebook. This should include all Trappings that are applicable to the character (see below).

11c. To determine the Trappings for the player character, each player should contact the Moderator in PM on the PRIMEVAL PbP forums. The Moderator will allow some latitude in this regard, but don't push your luck too far! :) If players have the Primeval RPG rulebook, the player may use the guidelines provided for the character's starting Trappings, but these are still subject to Moderator approval.

That ends the process of Character Generation, Step Three for the PRIMEVAL: Tales of the Anomalies PbP game.

I trust that folks can live with this process as outlined above. In the event that a player does not have the Primeval Roleplaying Game rulebook, character generation of game numbers and the like will be handled with the Moderator via direct e-mail or through PM, as the player desires.

Any general questions pertaining to the general game stats mechanics can be directed to the Primeval RPG Rules thread of the PbP forums, but all inquiries about specific use of rules, modification of rules, and the addition of new material not found in the game (such as new Traits and Skills, Gadgets, etc., and so forth) should be directed to the Moderator in either personal e-mail or PM.

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