Information for the Player
So, you wanna muck about on
Lathuria, huh? Your GM has it in his head to use the campaign setting and
you wanna make a character. Well, then, I suppose you want information on
how to go about it, huh? So, here we are, attempting to shed a little
light on the character creation process and the particular peculiars of making
a BESM character for Spellweavers. This setting was created for BESM
Second Edition, so you'll need a copy of that core rule book in order to make
The Anime Feel
First thing that you want to remember is that Spellweavers is supposed to be a setting like you might see in a fantasy/comedy Anime. Perhaps the most famous example of this genre is Slayers and its OAVs, movies, and sequel seasons. Like any BESM campaign setting, you'll want to keep in mind the look and concepts of the genre of Anime you wish to imitate.
One of the best ways to begin is to decide on a stock character concept. This may mean deciding what role your character will play in the group as a professional (wizard, healer, ninja) or as a group dynamic (ring leader, comic relief, requisite greenhorn). Other times, a character concept will present itself out of the blue. Character concepts have been known to come from common sayings, lines from movies, or parodies of other genres. Where ever the inspiration comes from, though, your concept should suggest certain attributes and skills for you to concentrate on when making your character. Take them to extremes and nine times out of ten, you'll hit the kind of character you're aiming for.
Choosing Your Race
Now that you know what kind of character you want to make, you can start making some of the meat and potatoes decisions on how your character will manifest herself. For most people, the next step will be to choose a race.
There are many intelligent races upon Lathuria, but only four with the ability to use magic. They are known as the Races of Power and make up the vast majority of the civilizations of Lathuria.
The first of the three immortal races, the Angels are lovers of light and splendor. They are benevolent beings who have no taste for pain or sorrow. However, they will not hesitate to fight when they deem that fighting is needed and they are formidable fighters. They revere their healers and protectors above all others, though, and seek to spread and praise these arts whenever they see them. The oldest and most powerful of the Angels is King Lylemuth. Second to him in power is his daughter, Princess Deresora. After her, there is the captain-general of the Angels, Cypherion. His two Knights, Paslar and Quonus, are known as the Lady of Healing and the Lord of Protection, respectively.
Like their Demon counterparts, the Angels are beings of limitless astral life energy. Current thought is that they actually manufacture it as they live. They have developed an art by which Humans may draw upon these immense energy reserves and channel it into the magic of healing and protection.
It is important to note that Angels are not necessarily "good" per se. Like any other race, it is possible to have an "evil" Angel. Angels are not holy creatures (though there are those who would like others to believe so) and it is just as likely to see an Angel doing an evil deed as it is to see a Human doing an evil deed.
Angels as Player Characters
The Angels of Lathuria come in a wide variety of forms, although they always look humanoid in form. Some have wings, halos, or horns, others do not. To add a bit of flavor, the player is highly encouraged to give her character at least one recognizable trait that marks them as an Angel. In which case, they should also take at least one level of Marked as a flaw. It is entirely up to the player and her GM to decide on what attributes to take. There is one exception, however. Since Angels are the originators of White Magic, they are required to take at least one level of Magic (white). The Angel character's white magic is then powered by her own astral energy. Angel characters have more flexibility when it comes to what they can do with their white magic and can come up with effects on the fly during game play. The effects should be limited to healing and protective effects, though, and the GM will have the final say on whether an effect a player comes up with is acceptable or not. Angel characters are also only limited to white magic. They are not allowed to use black or elemental magic under any circumstances.
You may be tempted to look up the Angel template that is published in the BESM Fantasy Bestiary. However, unless that is the type of character you are aiming for, you probably will not want to use it for this campaign setting. For one thing, it is a template very expensive in character points for a beginning character. For another thing, it does not fit well with the idea of what the Angels are supposed to be in Spellweavers, favoring instead the traditional concept of Angels as holy warrior paladins.
The second of the three immortal races, the Demons prefer the night and simplicity over light and spectacle. They are the most warlike of the Races of Power and delight in the thrill of battle and the glow of destruction. Though they have their fair share of healers and scholars, the most revered among them are the strong and those skilled in the warrior's arts. The eldest of the Demons, King Kellemain, is just such a figure; he is the greatest warrior ever to walk Lathuria and needs prove it to no one. His chosen successor is his daughter Selket, a weaver of battle magic beyond compare. Rezarcho is the next strongest of the Demons and holds the rank of captain-general of all Demons. He has three knights; Styx, the Lord of Hatred, Cocytus, the Lady of Fear, and Acheron, the Lord of Affliction.
Like their Angel counterparts, the Demons are beings of limitless astral life energy. Current thought is that they actually manufacture it as they live. They have developed an art by which Humans may draw upon these immense energy reserves and channel it into the magic of warfare and destruction.
It is important to note that Demons are not necessarily "evil" per se. Like any other race, it is possible to have an "good" Demon. Demons are not infernal creatures (though there are those who would like others to believe so) and it is just as likely to see a Demon doing a good deed as it is to see a Human doing a good deed.
Demons as Player Characters
The Demons of Lathuria come in a wide variety of forms, although they always look humanoid in form. Some have wings, claws, or horns, others do not. To add a bit of flavor, the player is highly encouraged to give her character at least one recognizable trait that marks them as a Demon. In which case, they should also take at least one level of Marked as a flaw. It is entirely up to the player and her GM to decide on what attributes to take. There is one exception, however. Since Demons are the originators of Black Magic, they are required to take at least one level of Magic (black). The Demon character's black magic is then powered by her own astral energy. Demon characters have more flexibility when it comes to what they can do with their black magic and can come up with effects on the fly during game play. The effects should be attack effects, though, and the GM will have the final say on whether an effect a player comes up with is acceptable or not. Demon characters are also only limited to black magic. They are not allowed to use white or elemental magic under any circumstances.
You may be tempted to look up the Demon template that is published in the BESM Fantasy Bestiary. However, unless that is the type of character you are aiming for, you probably will not want to use it for this campaign setting. For one thing, it is a template very expensive in character points for a beginning character. For another thing, it does not fit well with the idea of what the Demons are supposed to be in Spellweavers, favoring instead the traditional concept of Demons as infernal invaders from the underworld.
The third of the three immortal races, are the Elves. They prefer a moderate mix of the philosophies of their two immortal counterparts. Each Elf is encouraged to follow the path of their own heart and no profession or art is valued above others in their society, though reverence for nature is universally taught as the one, true way for an Elf. Queen Withra is the oldest of the Elves and is revered as the wisest. She is the being upon Lathuria most in tune with nature and she is widely regarded as the greatest Shaman ever to exist. She has four advisor-generals at her side, each with an equal share of power and who serves as the highest ranking Shaman aside from the Queen of the four aspects of nature. The first, a fighting monk of great renown, is Giara the Stone Lady, Knight of Earth. The second is Antiachua, a priestess of exceptional skill, the Lady of the Torrents, Knight of Water. Third is Aeolis, the expert marksman who can be bested with a bow by no one living or dead upon Lathuria, the Wind Lord, the Knight of Air. Finally, there is Helioris, a master of the double swords, the Lord of Flames, the Knight of Fire.
The Elves are different from their other immortal counterparts in that they have much smaller portions of astral energy. They make up for this by being one with nature and drawing upon that instead. They have also shared this particular brand of magic with Humans.
Elves as Player Characters
The Elves of Lathuria look for the most part like Humans. Their most distinguishing feature is their pointed ears, which would incur a level of Marked as a flaw. Other than that, it is entirely up to the player and her GM to decide on what attributes to take. There is one exception, however. Since Elves are the originators of Elemental Magic, they are required to take at least one level of Magic (elemental). Since Elves draw on the energies of nature in order to use magic, they are required to cast spells and therefore the player must define what spells her character has before game play. In general, the player should decide on a theme for her magic, based upon one of the four natural elements. For example, a player decides that her character will have a theme of fire for her magic so she decides to use some of her magic points to make a Weapon Attack (Fireball) spell. Elf characters are also only limited to elemental magic. They are not allowed to use white or black magic under any circumstances.
You may be tempted to look up the High Elf template that is published in the BESM Fantasy Bestiary. However, unless that is the type of character you are aiming for, you probably will not want to use it for this campaign setting. For one thing, it is a template very expensive in character points for a beginning character. For another thing, it does not fit well with the idea of what the Elves are supposed to be in Spellweavers, favoring instead the concept of an Elf as an all-wise matron or teacher of ancient lore.
Humanity is the only Race of Power upon Lathuria that is not immortal. Like the Elves, they do not have large supplies of astral energy. However, they are gifted with the ability to draw on the astral energies of the other Races of Power. It is for this reason alone that they have not been lumped together with all the other mortal races upon Lathuria and are called a Race of Power instead. There is no single ruler among the Humans of Lathuria and there are more humans than can ever be counted spread across the continent in every climate and landscape. Humanity has no single culture, no single philosophy, and to the other Races of Power their existence is something of an enigma; after all, with one race of darkness, one race of light, and one race of balance, what need did the Lord of Worlds have with a race of easily influenced and short-lived children? Their sheer numbers alone make them the greatest force, collectively, upon Lathuria. But the chances of them all standing together are slim due to their sheer diversity.
Humans as Player Characters
Humans are the great open book of Lathuria. They player is by and large free to decide on what kind of culture her player is from (within reason and with GM blessing, of course). They are a Race of Power and therefore must take at least one level of Magic, but it is up to the player to choose which type of magic to take. If the GM agrees, the player may, however, take levels of lesser magic at a decreased character point cost. But the possibility for magic must exist in the character in some sense. Since Humans draw on the astral energies of the Angels and Demons and the energies of nature, they must cast spells to use magic. Because of this, the player must define her character's spells before game play. In general, they should have a theme (such as black, white, or one of the four elements of nature). For example, a player may decide that her human character knows black magic, so she assigns her magic points to a devastating Weapon Attack. Or perhaps the character knows elemental magic of air, so the player creates a spell that allows her character to fly for a short period of time. Possibilities are endless, but all spells should be subject to the GM’s blessing.
The four Races of Power are definitely the most prolific and most decidedly are the most influential on Lathuria. But they do not encompass all of the intelligent races found on the continent.
Non-Races of Power
Aside from the four Races of Power, there are a great number of other sentient and semi-sentient races upon Lathuria. For whatever reason, these races are unable to use magic. But that does not make any of them any less powerful or intelligent. With the exception of the Grenduls, they tend to be far less numerous and it is not unheard of for one to go one's entire life without seeing one. None of these races should be allowed to use the Magic attribute.
Beast-Men - Said to have resulted from a series of rather... er... strange and... well... somewhat... unhealthy interactions between Humans and beasts. Though fantastical, these stories have absolutely nothing to corroborate them. Humanoid forms of many different animals exist on Lathuria, forming packs, prides, and flocks hidden in secret locations though out forests and mountains.
Centaurs - Considered to be slightly more refined than other beast-men, centaurs roam the open plains that lies south of the Desert of White Dust. They are wilderness warriors of renown. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Crissrichs - Also known as sea-orcs, these fearsome creatures migrate from place to place along the coasts of Lathuria, terrorizing the mer-folk whenever they can. Appearing as a nightmarish blending of merfolk, sharks, and orcs, they are the scourge of the sea and attack in packs.
Dragons - Fewest in numbers of all intelligent races on Lathuria, there aren't even enough of them left to create a system of packs. Extremely long-lived, many of the ones that remain remember the War of the Young. They can be found in the most remote parts of Lathuria, such as mountains and forests. Don't tangle with 'em, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary and exclude the attribute "Dynamic Sorcery."
Dwarves - Known as fierce warriors and master craftsmen of stone and metal, Dwarf-crafted weapons are a precious commodity in any market. Though Dwarves have no compunction against city living, most of the Dwarves of Lathuria can be found in the Mitzan Mountains in the east. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Fairies - The best gardeners of Lathuria. Fairies can accomplish amazing feats of botany for a race without magic. The tiniest of all sentient races on Lathuria, they are also the hardest to find. Many famous cooks and bakers seek out Fairy colonies in order to obtain a regular supply of goods such as Fairy Honey and Fairy Spices. Such goods are considered to make the best foods on Lathuria. For a useful template, see the template for the Pixie in the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Grenduls - By far, the most numerous of the Non-Races of Power, these rabbit-like creatures can be found almost anywhere. Though most of them live in burrowed communities in forest or plain areas, many also live in cities and make their way as very charming businessbunnies. Diminutive and flighty, Grenduls can often take a lot of getting used to. But they have seemingly endless supplies of energy and vigor.
Halflings - On Lathuria, these small humanoids have both a reputation for performance and thievery. Though there most certainly are Halflings that excel at sneaking around and stealing things, this reputation is not always earned. Many Halflings travel the continent as members of the Bardic Circles and when a company of Halfling theater performers comes to town, you know it will be a party. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Kobolds - Bi-pedal dog creatures that are attracted to shiny things. Often traveling in packs, they have also been known to latch on to unsuspecting adventuring parties in hopes of finding bigger, shinier treasures in places they would usually get killed trying to reach. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Mer-folk - Land-goers also sometimes refer to them as the guardians of the seas, there are no races on Lathuria better at sea-faring than those who live in the waters themselves. Mer-folk do limited trade with land-goers, selling pearls and corals as novelties or raw materials for crafts. Companies of Mer-folk will also hire themselves out to sailing concerns as guides and mercenary guards. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Minotaurs - The largest and proudest of the beast-men, Minotaurs consider themselves to be above the other beast-men of Lathuria. A warrior race, they are very fearsome in battle. A charging Minotaur is near impossible to stop without magic or a score or more of soldiers. They don't use magic and have never regretted this. They are proud of their non-magical heritage and tend to ridicule those who use Black Magic in order to fight battles. For a useful template, see the BESM Fantasy Bestiary.
Orcs - Big... mean... ugly... You get the idea. See the BESM Fantasy Bestiary for a template.
Trolls - Even bigger, meaner, and uglier than Orcs. They have an unyielding and incomprehensible hatred toward the Dwarves and try to crunch them (often with a nice garnish) whenever possible. See the BESM Fantasy Bestiary for a template.
A Note On Half-Races
Half-breed characters, such as half-Elves and half-Angels do not exist on Lathuria. No one is really sure why this is the case, but a cross breed between races has never been seen in the world, at least not that any one has heard of. Many make-believe stories have sprung up over the centuries, but never has there been a single documented case of a half-breed.
Magic of Lathuria
No one really knows how magic is possible, but it is a definite reality. Among the Races of Power, magic is as common as a drink of water. Black Magic is derived from the astral energies of the Demons and those who specialize in it can be capable of incredible destructive power. The opposite is true of White Magic which is derived from the astral energies of the Angels. Demons and Angels are allowed only the types of magic that are native to their astral selves, but can come up with spells and cantrips on the fly with no need for memorization of spells or incantations. As such, players of Angels and Demons do not need to assign their magic points before gameplay.
Elves differ from the other two immortal races in that they do not draw upon their own astral energies for magic. Instead, they tap into the primal forces of nature. What this means for the player of an Elven character is that they will have to assign their magic points to pre-made spells and effects, just in the same way an Elf would have to memorize a spell. Elves are limited to magic effects based on the elements, but Elemental Magic has been known to produce both destruction and creation.
Humans have no restriction on their magic. They can cast Black, White, or Elemental Magic or even a combination of the three. Most often, however, a Human will choose to focus on one type or another and master it before moving on to another. Like Elves, Humans do not draw upon their own astral energies. Instead, they draw on the energies of the Angels, the Demons, or the elements. As such, they too must memorize spells and the player must assign their magic points before gameplay.
As in any RPG, your group should get together during character creation and discuss the types of characters you are going to make. An entire company of Angels may be all well and good, but what will the group do when faced with an angry Dragon or an army of Orcs and no real attack power? The adventuring group that you and your fellow players form should consist of characters with skills that compliment each other rather than mimic each other.
This idea is pretty standard in any RPG. Talk with your GM and your group to get the process moving.
Being a Part of an
Organization (optional step)
There are many covert and not-so-covert organizations on Lathuria. There's even a few semi-covert ones. Explanations of these organizations can be found in The Faces of Lathuria, but you may wish to make your character a member of one of the organizations. Each one has advantages and disadvantages to being a member and you should consider them all carefully. They can give your GM some exciting (or deadly!) plot hooks and cane serve to make your character the star for a while in the story line. You should speak with your GM prior to making your character a member in one of those organizations to see how much it will come into play. If you decide to make your character a member of one of the organizations, you should assign the appropriate levels of Organizational Ties attribute and the Red Tape flaw. Have fun with the advantages, but don't be surprised if your GM uses it to bite you in the butt, too!
Also, you should be aware that the histories of these organizations are still on-going. As the story lines of Spellweavers advance, some of these organizations may undergo some rather drastic changes. Whether your group decides to implement these changes as they come to light is, as always, up to your group and the GM. But you should keep an eye on the story lines in case something happens in an organization that your character will have to deal with.
3X3X3 (optional step)
No one comes out of no where, plunked on to the face of the world fully-formed and ready to adventure. Each character you make should have something that resembles a back story. One easy way of fleshing out who your character is and where they come from is the 3X3X3 activity. Using this handy pdf chart, you can quickly sketch out three friends, three allies, and three enemies that your character has had dealings with prior to her life as an adventurer. This is not only a useful tool for making a character for Lathuria or BESM, but you can apply it to many other games as well.
This page created on
6/5/06 by Berzerker_prime.