Arcane Background (Background)

Requirements: Novice, Special
This is the Edge your character must purchase to have any sort of arcane, psionic, or divine ability. See Spells & Magic for a complete description.

Bard (Professional)

Requirements: Novice, Agility d6+, Knowledge (Poisoncraft) d6+, Perform d8+, Human or Half-elf
The bard is a member of a bizarre class of entertainers and storytellers prized by the aristocratic city dwellers. They get a +2 bonus on all Common Knowledge rolls and Knowledge (Poisoncraft) rolls.

A bard is a master of poisons, knowledgeable in both their use and manufacture. Once per day, a bard may make a Knowledge (Poisoncraft) roll. On a success, they may create 1 dose of poison using easily obtained materials, and 2 doses with a raise.

A bard knows how to make 1 type of poison upon taking this Edge, and gains an additional poison for each rank he achieves. To determine the new poison, the bard draws 2 cards. The first card drawn is used for the Poison Difficulty Table, and the second card is used for the Poison Type Table. A bard is encouraged to name his poisons, especially when establishing a reputation or selling his wares.

Poison Difficulty Table
Value Vigor Check Modifier Suit Application Method
Joker +2 Joker Injested
2-4 +1 Clubs Injested
5-10 +0 Diamonds Injected
Jack-Queen -1 Hearts Inhaled
King-Ace -2 Spades Contact
Poison Type Table
Card Effect
2-4 Loss of one die of Vigor in 2d6 days. If this would drop Vigor below d4 then death results
5-7 Fatigue level for 2d6 hours
8-10 Paralyzed for 2d6 minutes
Jack-Queen Automatic wound
King-Ace Immediate Exhaustion; death in 2d10+10 minutes
Joker Death in 3d6+10 seconds

Dune Trader (Professional)

Requirements: Novice, Smarts d6+, Notice d6+, Persuasion d6+, Streetwise d6+, Human, Dwarf, Elf or Half-Elf
An experienced broker of goods, the dune trader gets +2 to Streetwise rolls for buying and selling (see the Money and Equipment section for further details). They are also skilled at evaluating goods and negotiating prices.

A dune trader may evaluate the exact worth of a common item with a successful Notice roll and that of a unique or unusual item with a raise. Failure indicates the price being off by 10% per point the roll was missed. Snake eyes means a completely false appraisal of the item.

Negotiating is an opposed Persuasion roll against the target’s Spirit. Each success and raise modifies the price by 10% in the dune trader’s favor. Failure reduces the target’s reaction by one step and snake eyes makes the target outright hostile.

Elemental Immunity (Power)

Requirements: Seasoned, Arcane Background (Miracles)
Elemental clerics can ignore the physical effects of the element they worship upon taking this edge. The duration of this power is four rounds per rank, and it can only be used once per day. Thus, a water cleric may move through water freely, and an earth cleric may pass through stone walls as if they weren’t there. Force exerted on the cleric by the element may also be ignored—a great wind won’t affect an air cleric, for example, nor would flames burn a fire cleric. This protection extends to everything that the cleric carries on his person at the time.

Focus (Racial)

Requirements: Novice, Dwarf
A dwarf’s present task is called his focus. No simple job can become a focus. A focus must be a feat that requires at least one week to complete. While performing actions that are directly related to his focus, a dwarf receives a +1 bonus to all Trait rolls. The concept of the focus is integral to a dwarf’s makeup and is even tied to his physiology-so much so that those dwarves who die before completing their foci become undead banshees who wander the wastes haunting their unfinished works.

Gate Element (Power)

Requirements: Veteran, Arcane Background (Miracles)
A cleric can gate material directly from his elemental plane upon taking this edge. The amount of material gated is three cubic feet per rank. The material is a pure specimen from the plane in question: earth, silt, magma, air, fire, sunlight, rain, or water. The exact nature of the material is in its purest, most basic form. Earth arrives as dense stone, water as pure liquid, fire as cleansing flame, and air in the form of a tremendous cyclonic wind that’s capable of knocking down all huge or smaller creatures and lasts one round. Magma arrives as a molten blob, sun as a focussed beam of sunlight from the sky, silt as a pile of fine dust, and rain as a soothing shower from a cloud that lasts one round. The shape of this gated material may be dictated by the cleric (a stone wall one inch thick, a sheet of flame surrounding an altar, etc.), but it can’t be gated to a distance more than 10" from the cleric. Material may be gated only once per day.

Gladiator (Professional)

Requirements: Novice, Strength d6+, Fighting d8+, Shooting or Throwing d6+
Gladiators are slaves of the city-states or merchant houses, specially trained to participate in brutal physical contests for the enjoyment of the masses. Disciplined in many diverse forms of hand-to-hand combat and skilled in the use of dozens of different weapons, gladiators are among the most dangerous warriors on Athas. He begins play with the Level Headed edge, ignoring normal prerequisites.

Improved Powerful Leap (Racial)

Requirements: Seasoned, Powerful Leap, Thri-kreen
The thri-kreen develops the ability to dodge missile fire. Thri-kreen who see the attack coming may make an Agility roll at -2 to jump out of the way and avoid damage. If successful, move the character 1" out of the way (his choice exactly where). Only physical missiles can be dodged, not magical effects (such as the Bolt spell).

Improved Survivalist (Racial)

Requirements: Novice, Survivalist, Half-elf
A half-elf can befriend one creature, and it receives the benefits of the Beast Master and Beast Bond edges. The creature can be any animal native to the half-elf’s survivalist terrain type, but it can’t be larger than Size +1. The half-elf must find the creature while it’s young and spend a full week with it to train it. After that time, the creature follows the half-elf everywhere and obeys simple commands. A half-elf can only befriend one creature at a time, and he must wait 100 days after the death of one befriended creature before beginning to train another. Choice of a half-elf’s befriended creature is always subject to the GM’s approval.

Mul Exertion (Racial)

Requirements: Novice, Mul
Because of their amazing level of endurance, muls can work harder and for longer periods of time before needing rest than most other races. This is shown on TABLE XII below; a mul’s Vigor times 2 is added to the type of labor, which results in the total number of hours (or days) he can work before he must rest. Regardless of the type or length of exertion, eight hours of undisturbed sleep allows a mul to awaken fully rested and ready to begin work again. Perhaps this durability takes its toll in other areas, for the average mul lives only to a maximum age of 90.

Exertion Time Before Requiring Rest
Heavy labor (stone construction, quarry work, running) 24+(Vigor x 2) (hours)
Medium labor (light construction, mining, jogging) 36+(Vigor x 2) (hours)
Light labor (combat training, walking encumbered) 48+(Vigor x 2) (hours)
Normal activity (walking, conversation) Vigor x 2 (days)

Powerful Leap (Racial)

Requirements: Novice, Thri-kreen
The thri-kreen develops a powerful leap that allows him to jump 2" horizontally from a dead stop, or up to 4" with a "run and go." A successful Strength roll grants one extra inch of distance, plus 1" per raise.

Soul Drain (Power)

Requirements: Seasoned, Arcane Background (any), Knowledge (listed skill) d10+
This edge behaves as originally written, but each type of Arcane Background needs a different skill to qualify for this edge.
Clerics: Clerics pull the energy from the elemental plane they worship. The required skill is Knowledge (Planes Lore).
Druids: Druids pull the energy from their guarded lands. The required skill is Knowledge (Nature).
Psionicists: Psionicists pull the energy from deep within their own psyche. The required skill is Knowledge (The Way).
Templars: Templars get the energy from their sorcerer-king. The required skill is Knowledge (Bureaucracy).
Wizards: Wizards pull the energy from the surrounding plantlife. The required skill is Knowledge (Path Lore).

Survivalist (Racial)

Requirements: Novice, Half-elf
The half-elf receives benefits of the Woodsman edge, but applied to one type of terrain only. The player must specify the terrain type his character is proficient in. Terrain types for the world of Athas include stony barrens, sandy wastes, rocky badlands, mountains, scrub plains, forests, salt flats, and boulder fields. Note that the terrain type selected must make sense for the character. A half-elf who grew up in Tyr, for example, shouldn’t select swamp survival.

Trademark Weapon

This edge is common for gladiators who specialize in a weapon for their arena matches, and elves who use special custom-made weapons from their tribe.

Venomous Saliva (Racial)

Requirements: Seasoned, Thri-kreen
The thri-kreen develops a venomous saliva. When a victim receives damage a bite that causes at least a Shaken result, he must make a Vigor roll or be paralyzed for a number of rounds as follows: smaller than medium-sized creatures, 2d10 rounds; medium-sized creatures, 2d8 rounds; large creatures, 1d8 rounds; huge and gargantuan creatures, 1 round.

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