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Modern Mythras - Characters and Cultures


Alex Greene

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The cover image this week is of a landmark district in an American coastal town, Cape May, New Jersey.

So let's take a look at the basic unit of any Mythras adventure, the player character.

Since pretty much every sentient being on Earth is going to be human, we can stick to the human template for characteristic and attribute generation as presented in Mythras. No elves, halflings, orcs, goblins or Tolkienesque creatures.

After The Vampire Wars presents rules for Fae, Vampires, Werewolves and so on. We can look at non-human beings in a Mythras Modern setting later - for right now, all the characters, and antagonists and non-player characters, are likely to be human. Before we enter the Twilight Zone, it is important to establish a baseline of what I laughably call "normality."

Characteristics and Attributes

The characteristic generation system outlined in Mythras, page 6, works just great for a modern setting. Create your character's basic STR, CON, SIZ, DEX, INT, POW, and CHA the same as in Mythras.

There are no Magic Points. Use the term "Prana Points" from Luther Arkwright: Roleplaying Across The Parallels. You can also use the Tenacity rules from that sourcebook, if you don't have Mythras Companion.

Other Attributes are just the same: Luck Points, Hit Points, Movement and so on.

Standard Skills

Page 11 of Mythras introduces every character's Standard Skills. Use the list on page 11, with one exception: Locale.

It's highly likely that Locale skill won't be part of their repertoire of skills. The advent of supermarkets in the latter half of the 20th century saw a steep decline in people's ability to hunt and forage in the wild for food, and the introduction of online shopping effectively killed off Forage skill for good, apart from a handful of people in organisations such as the Scouts and Guides, people with military training, and a few weird people who insist in living off the grid.

What skill replaces Locale as a Standard Skill will be covered in a future chapter, Skills In Modern Mythras.

Cultures

What sort of Cultures will one expect to find in a modern Mythras game? The most common are Urban, Suburban, and Rural, but there are others: Underground, Militant, Wandering, Criminal, and Off The Grid. Each Culture and Subculture will have its own Cultural Passions, Cultural Skills, and Voice - and next week, we'll cover those in detail.

One thing - as well as the Culture you come from, you can also be more specific, and indicate where on Earth you come from. An American from the Deep South will view the world differently to a Brit from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, a French sommelier who works in a Paris cafe, an Australian train conductor, and a Delhi jitney driver. All Professions come from Urban Cultures, but each Terrestrial Culture has its own unique vibe, worldview, and Voice.

This means that you can play a character from your home town and cultural background, and your character's worldview can be your own; or you can choose an authentic, realistic lifestyle completely other than yours, and live through their eyes. Youtube vlogger, parish priest of a small village in Kent, ex-US Marine, plasterer from Chepstow, motorbike courier from Cape May ... you're an adventurer, and in this game you will be walking a mile in the shoes of people you could bump into just around the corner.

Edited by Alex Greene

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