Ability Scores

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Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells
Score Modifier Bonus Spells (By Circle)
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
1 -5 Can't cast spells with this ability
2-3 -4
4-5 -3
6-7 -2
8-9 -1
10-11 0 - - - - - - -
12-13 +1 1 - - - - - -
14-15 +2 1 1 - - - - -
16-17 +3 1 1 1 - - - -
18-19 +4 1 1 1 1 - - -
20-21 +5 2 1 1 1 1 - -
22-23 +6 2 2 1 1 1 1 -
24-25 +7 2 2 2 1 1 1 1
26-27 +8 2 2 2 2 1 1 1
28-29 +9 3 2 2 2 2 1 1
30-31 +10 3 3 2 2 2 2 1
32-33 +11 3 3 3 2 2 2 2
34-35 +12 3 3 3 3 2 2 2
36-37 +13 4 3 3 3 3 2 2
38-39 +14 4 4 3 3 3 3 2
40-41 +15 4 4 4 3 3 3 3
42-43 +16 4 4 4 4 3 3 3
44-45 +17 5 4 4 4 4 3 3
46-47 +18 5 5 4 4 4 4 3
48-49 +19 5 5 5 4 4 4 4

The six ability scores determine the very basics of your character – how strong he is, how fast he is, how smart he is, and so forth.

Ability Modifiers

Each ability has a modifier, usually ranging from -5 to +5 at character generation. The table (“Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells”) shows the modifier for each score. It also shows bonus spells, which you’ll need to know about if your character is a spellcaster.

The modifier is the number you apply to the die roll when your character tries to do something related to that ability. You also use the modifier with some numbers that aren’t die rolls. A positive modifier is called a bonus, and a negative modifier is called a penalty.

To calculate an ability score modifier, subtract 10 from the score, then divide the remainder by 2, rounding down.

Key Ability Modifiers

Each character class has two Key Ability Modifiers – a Key Offensive Modifier (KOM) and Key Defensive Modifier (KDM). KOM is used to calculate their combat skill in making attacks rolls (attack bonus) and striking down foes (damage on weapon attacks). KDM measures their skill at surviving damage (hit points) and protecting against attacks (Armor Class). If a character’s KDM changes, the character’s hit points also increase or decrease accordingly.

The KOM and KDM can never be the same ability modifier.

Spellcasting Ability Modifier

Each spellcasting track has its own Spellcasting Ability Modifier (SAM) which is used to calculate DCs for their spells and determine if the character receives any additional spells besides those allotted by default. Characters with a spellcasting track may receive additional spells per [Scene] if their Spellcasting Ability Modifier for that track is exceptionally high (see table "Ability Modifiers and Bonus Spells"). Additional spells of a circle that a character cannot otherwise cast are not gained.

The Abilities

Each ability partially describes your character and affects some of his or her actions.

Strength (Str)

Strength is a physical ability that measures your character’s muscle and physical power. You apply your character’s Strength modifier to:

  • Fortitude saving throws (if your Strength modifier is higher than your Constitution modifier).
  • Skills that have Strength as their key ability.
  • Your attacks gain a bonus to damage equal to half your Strength modifier (if positive).

Strength is the Key Offensive Modifier for paladins and some barbarians.

Dexterity (Dex)

Dexterity is a physical ability that measures hand-eye coordination, agility, reflexes, and balance. You apply your character’s Dexterity modifier to:

  • Initiative checks to determine who acts first in a combat encounter.
  • Reflex saving throws (if your Dexterity is equal to or higher than your Intelligence modifier).
  • Skills that have Dexterity as their key abbilty.

Dexterity is the Key Offensive Modifier for rangers and many rogues, and the Key Defensive Modifier for some sages.

Constitution (Con)

Constitution is a physical ability that represents your character’s health, stamina, and durability. You apply your character’s Constitution modifier to:

  • Fortitude saving throws (if your Constitution modifier is equal to or higher than your Strength modifier).
  • Skills that have Constitution as their key ability.
  • You gain [Damage reduction] equal to half your Constitution modifier (if positive).

Constitution is the Key Defensive Modifier for barbarians, monks, some rogues, some sages, and tacticians.

Intelligence (Int)

Intelligence is a mental ability that determines how well your character learns and reasons. You apply your character’s Intelligence modifier to:

  • Reflex saving throws (if your Intelligence modifier is higher than your Dexterity modifier).
  • Skills that have Intelligence as their key ability.

Intelligence is the Key Offensive Modifier for some rogues, some sages, and tacticians, and the Key Defensive Modifier for rangers.

Wisdom (Wis)

Wisdom is a mental ability that describes a character’s willpower, common sense, perception, and intuition. While Intelligence represents one’s ability to analyze information, Wisdom represents being in tune with and aware of one’s surroundings. You apply your character’s Wisdom modifier to:

Wisdom is the Key Offensive Modifier for monks, some sages, and shamans, and the Key Defensive Modifier for some rogues.

Charisma (Cha)

Charisma is a mental ability that measures a character’s force of personality, persuasiveness, personal magnetism, and ability to lead. This ability represents actual strength of personality, not merely how one is perceived by others in a social setting. You apply your character’s Charisma modifier to:

  • Will saving throws (if your Charisma modifier is higher than your Wisdom modifier).
  • Skills that have Charisma as their key ability.

Charisma is the Key Offensive Modifier for some Sages, and the Key Defensive Modifier for Paladins, some Rogues, and Shamans.