Stunts!

In Spirit of the Century, Stunts are the way you take your skills beyond the rules. A stunt is a small cheat, a way to push a rule that extra bit. Each stunt is rooted in a single skill, but some of then enable to use your skills when you normally wouldn’t. Stunts take the place of Feats in that other game, and if you want to adapt a Feat for SotC just talk to your friendly local GM.

The SotC book gives a huge heaping load of stunts as examples, and here a few of them to give you an idea of what they are and what they do. More powerful stunts have simpler stunts you need to take first.

The most basic stunts that we’ll use in this Eberron game enable spellcasting. The Google Document discusses that in more detail, and its open to house rules as we go through the game. Basically, each school of Arcane magic is a stunt rooted in the Spellcraft skill. Normally, Spellcraft just lets you do small tricks, the equivalent of Cantrips, and identify spells that someone else is casting or ones you find written down. The same is true for Divine magic stunts, which are rooted in the Religion skill – as I said, more in the Google Doc.

Here are some stunts from the SotC book – borrow one or leaf through one if you’re curious to see more. These are just examples to get you thinking…(I’m also picking useful ones for an Eberron game)

Research [Academics]: This stunt means that when using Academics to research something, when you fail the roll you still get the information, but you take a lot longer to get it. The GM doesn’t have to tell you the difficulty or how badly you failed, but if you put in the time, you’ll still get the info.

Languages [Academics]: With this stunt, you can speak and understand a number of languages equal to your Academics score. You don’t have to declare these before-hand, but can decide in-game that you understand a given language when you encounter it for the first time.

Walking Library [Academics]: With this stunt the character is always considered to have a Library handy of a quality equal to his Academics score, due to raw memorization of real Libraries.

Photographic Memory [Academics]: (Requires Walking Library) You remember everything you’ve seen or read. If the answer is some detail that has come up, then you’ll remember with only a moment’s thought.

On Top of It [Alertness]: In a given combat, you can spend a Fate Point to go first in an exchange, regardless of your actual initiative.

Danger Sense [Alertness]: Whenever ambushed, you can take a full defensive action with a +2 bonus regardless of whether you are surprised.

Contortionist [Athletics]: You can bend your body to fit into shapes a normal human body could not – into suitcases, cubby holes, through tiny crevices and so on.

One Arrow Left [Bow]: During a combat, reloading isn’t an issue, and is assumed to be going on all the time as part of the exchanges. Nonetheless, there is a certain magic in the last arrow in the quiver. At any time, you can declare that a particular arrow is your last arrow. When you use it, you get a +3 to your attack roll.

Rain of Arrows [Bow]: When using your ranged attacks to perform a block, you can ignore up to a -2 penalty for the complexity of the block, even over a significant area.

Tripwire Sensibilities [Burglary]: You can use your Burglary skill rather than Alertness or Investigation to detect and avoid traps.

Hatpin Maestro [Burglary]: You can improvise anything to bypass a lock, and never take a penalty for not having the proper materials, and when you have the right tools, you can bypass a lock one time increment faster than usual.

Contact [Contacting]: Whenever you take this stunt, you define a Contact. This Contact is a companion as described on page 77, with three advances. You can also allocate an Aspect to this companion if you choose.

Close Contacts [Contacting]: (Requires at least a Contact) You have three more advances to spend among your companions however you wish, creating truly above-average companions for your character.

Clever Disguise [Deceit]: Normally you cannot create a disguise that will stand up to intense scrutiny, but with this stunt you can. You use your full Deceit skill to defend your disguise against Alertness or Empathy.

Last Leg [Endurance]: You are able to spend a Fate Point to defer a consequence to the next exchange in a combat.

Feel the Burn [Endurance]: You are able to take one extra moderate, physical consequence.

Brawler [Fists]: Your defense rolls are at +1 when using your Fists, and if you are fighting with two or more minions you also deal +1 damage on the stress track.

Dirty Fighter [Fists]: (Requires Brawler) When you tag an Aspect on an opponent in combat, you get an additional +1 to your roll.

Martial Arts [Fists]: You can spend a full action to study your opponent’s fighting techniques. Your opponent has to defend against this action, which is essentially an attack. If successful, you can place an Aspect on your opponent.

Unbound [Might]: When restrained, you get a +2 to your rolls to escape your bonds.

Best Foot Forward [Rapport]: When making a roll to make a good first impression on an NPC, you cannot possibly make them think less of you no matter how bad the roll goes.

Smooth Recovery [Resolve]: This stunt enables you to take an additional moderate, social consequence.

Inner Strength [Resolve]: Whenever someone is trying to get into your head, and you take a full defensive action, you get a +3 instead of a +2.

Still Standing [Resolve]: (Requires Inner Strength) YOur character can take an additional moderate consequence of any type.

…anyway, this is a selection.

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