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Post by The Hive Mind on Thu May 15, 2014 4:50 pm

Languages are handles slightly differently from those in the core rules.

First, all characters are considered illiterate, even in their native language. In order to become literate, a character must first find someone who can read and write the language, which can be a quest in and of itself. The character must then spend two skill points to acquire literacy in a language, at which point he gains the same level of written competence as he has competence in the spoken language. from that point forward, if the character spends more points to increase competence in a language, his competence in the written version of that language also increases. When languages are listed in character write-ups and stat blocks, an asterisk (*) after the language denotes literacy.

Language Competence

Most languages have three levels of competence: pidgin, basic competence, and fluency. One skill point spent on a language allows the character to learn the pidgin version of it, which lets a character understand and recite only basic grammatical structures and words. Two skill points grants basic competency in both speech and comprehension, while three skill points buys fluency. When languages are listed in character write-ups and stat blocks, a (1) after the language represents pidgin competence, while a (2) after the language represents basic competence. If there is no number in parenthesis after the language, the character is fluent in that language.

Some languages, like Black Tongue or Snow Elf Patrol Sign, exist only to convey simple terms and meaning withing a very limited scope (in this case warfare), and therefore have no level of competence above pidgin. Others, like High Elven, are so complex and intricate that a pidgin level of competence is meaningless, and only begin to make sense at the basic competence level.

Most characters begin play with fluency in at least one of their automatic languages and varying levels of competence in other automatic languages. Additionally, rather than gaining bonus languages for high Intelligence modifiers, starting characters instead gain two skill points per Intelligence bonus to spend on automatic or bonus languages. Characters may not begin play with skill ranks in languages other than those listed as automatic or bonus languages.

Some languages provide a variation on synergy with one another. When a character gains a level of competence in a language (called the primary language) that provides some level of competence in another language (called the related language), his competence in the related language immediately increases. If the character already has that level of competence in the related language, then he gains no benefit from the competence increase granted by the primary language.

A character that learns or improves a language after 1st level can only advance it with one skill point per level, mimicking the natural growth of linguistic mastery over time. Thus, a character who begins play with a pidgin understanding of Norther could not spend two skill points at 2nd level to grant fluency with the language--he can spend one point to gain basic competency, than anoter at 3rd or higher level to gain fluency with the language. A character can advance as many languages as he wishes at each level, but only one level of competency at a time.

If you are less than fluent in a language you are attempting to use with certain skills, you may suffer penalties on skill checks with them, as shown on the table below.

Language Comptency Modifiers*

Competence / Bluff / Diplomacy / Gather Info / Intimidate / Sense Motive
None -------- (-30) ---(-30) -------(-30) -------(-5) --------(-20)
Pidgin ---------(-5) ----(-5) --------(-5) --------(-2) --------(-5)
Basic ----------(-2) ----(-2) --------(-2) -------------------- (-2)
Fluent (No bonuses or penalties)

*At the DM's discretion, these modifiers may not apply to actions in which language plays no part, such as feinting during combat or using someone's body language as the object of your Sense Motive skill.

Languages of Eredane

Black Tongue (pidgin only)
Colonial (related synergy with Erenlander and Trader's Tongue)
Courtier (basic and fluent only)
Danisil (related synergy with High Elven, primary/related synergy with Halfling)
Erenlander (primary synergy with Colonial, Norther, and Trader's Tongue)
Halfling (primary/related synergy with Danisil, primary synergy with Trader's Tongue)
High Elven (basic and fluent only; primary synergy with Trader's Tongue)
Norther (related synergy with Erenlander, primary synergy with Trader's Tongue)
Old Dwarven and Clan Dialects (primary synergy to Trader's Tongue)
Snow Elf Patrol Sign (restricted; pidgin only)
Sundered Tongues (restricted)
Sylvan (restricted)
Trader's Tongue (related synergy to Colonial, Erenlander, Halfling, High Elven, Norther, and Old Dwarven)

Alphabets of Eredane

Language -----------------Alphabets
Black Tongue ----------------None
Colonial Sarcosan -----------(30 letters)
Courtier Sarcosan -----------(30 letters)
Danisil High Elven -----------(38 letters)
Erenlander Sarcosan --------(23 letters)
Halfling High Elven ----------(38 letters)
High Elven High Elven -------(38 letters)
Norther Norther ------------(18 letters)
Old Dwarven Pictographs ----(thousands)
Orcish ----------------------None
Snow Elf Patrol Sign ---------None
Trader's Tongue ------------simplified Elven
The Hive Mind
The Hive Mind

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