Character Creation Quick Guide
Let me be frank about this: the Arpeggio system is supposed to be simpler than other systems, but
that doesn't necessarily mean that you can create a character without reading any of the other
pages on the site. The easiest way to do character creation is to have me walk you through it in
real time and fill out your sheet myself, in which case you'll want my
contact information, but of course I won't be around forever. If you
want or have to brave it yourself, you should at minimum review the
key character sheet (and maybe the
example character sheets), as well as these two extremely long and
rambly pages explaining the battle system and the process of
making up attacks. But you most likely want to skip all that, so I will
attempt to accomodate on this page, although I will still link to other pages to avoid repeating
information that has already been repeated an uncountable number of times. Let's get started.
This page will explain how to create a character that is simple in Arpeggio terms. By this I mean that we won't be using things like Iron Man's armor (which would get its own separate character sheet), we won't make a character who controls other characters such as a Pokémon Trainer, we won't shift between an Attack Form and a Defense Form, or other unusual things like that; for those kinds of complications, see this page and, well, the rest of the site.
We're creating a player character at Level 0; to start at a higher level, do this part first and then just apply the appropriate number of level ups. I'll break this into steps:
- Step 1: Come up with a name for your character.
- Step 2: Come up with a general idea of your character's personality. Then go here and match your character's personality with one of the eight Affinities. Affinities are expressed as one of the eight Elements, but they have nothing to do with using Elemental attacks in battle; this is more like a Zodiac sign type thing, and it won't start doing anything until later into the game.
- Step 3: Decide what kind of melee weapon your character would be most likely to use in battle. If you don't want to use a weapon, or you want to use a projectile weapon like a gun, then just pick a melee type even though you'll never use it. The main classes of melee weapons in Arpeggio are Sword, Axe, and Lance, with some other classes being Knives, Whips, and Bows (Bows are actually a projectile weapon, firing arrows from a distance, but unlike guns and other projectile weapons, Bows use the Weapon Level system like melee weapons). You can also make up your own weapon type, but many weapons fit into the existing types without being literally that kind of weapon; check this page or browse the default weapons for more information. If you really, really don't want to use a melee weapon, you can potentially trade your starting Weapon Level in for an additional Elemental Resistance (see Step 9).
- Step 4: Decide whether you want your character to start with 10 VP and 5 MP, or instead with 5 VP and 10 MP. Either way, you will start with 10 HP. VP is used for physical and psychic attacks, and MP is used for magical attacks, so basically just decide whether or not you want to specialize in magical attacks. This isn't a big deal, though, because every time you level up, you will increase either HP, VP, or MP by 5, so this decision is just a small nudge toward or away from being a magic user. If you want to know what the difference is between physical, psychic, and magic attacks, you could check this page, but be careful because there's a lot of unnecessary rambling on there.
- Step 5: Determine your character's field stats. Field stats are the stats that your character uses outside of battle, and do not affect battles in any way. This is probably the most important part of character creation, because field stats will never change later in the game; they do not increase as you level up. The field stat system is explained on the key character sheet (find the section labeled "Field Stats"), but the gist is that you have 30 points to spend between six stats, and each stat can only range from 1 to 9. For a long and rambly list of examples of how field stats might be used, check this page.
- Step 6: Write a short description of your character's unarmed basic attack. In other words, the attack that your character will perform if they have no weapons and no VP or MP left. This can be a simple punch, or something more complicated. You can also describe different basic attacks at different times in-game, but they will all do the same amount of damage, and you still need a brief description to stick here. It's mostly just flavor text, but that one rambly page explains the mechanical difference between melee and projectile attacks.
- Step 7: To begin with, your character will have three special attacks. However, you have the option of trading in one, two, or all three of these starting attacks for starting points of Defense Power. If you want three special attacks to start with, then you will start with 0 Defense Power, but if you want 3 Defense Power, then you'll start with no special attacks, and so on. The trick is that when you learn more special attacks later in the game through leveling up, these cannot be traded in for Defense Power, they can only be special attacks. So, in this step, decide on how much Defense Power you want to start with, keeping in mind that it affects your starting and total numbers of special attacks. You can get more Defense Power later, but not through leveling up.
- Step 8: Make up three special attacks for your character (note Step 7: if you opted for some points of Defense Power, then you will have fewer than three special attacks to begin with). Special attacks can be physical attacks, psychic attacks, or magical attacks, and they do not have to actually attack someone, they can be healing moves or anything else that you can imagine. Again, for a very long and rambly explanation of the difference between physical, psychic, and magical, check this page. There are some default psychic attacks and default magical spells, but it's usually more fun to make up your own attacks, which is why there are no default physical attacks. If you don't understand Arpeggio's number system (which is probably the case if you're reading this page), then just make up the concepts for the attacks and give them to your Maestro, who will determine their actual power and VP/MP cost. If you want to try to do it yourself, though, look through the default attacks already linked to so that you can get a sense of how to write up an attack, and sift through the rambly page to find the parts that are relevant to your three attack ideas. Your character will learn a new attack every 5 level ups (at Level 5, Level 10, and so on), so even if you traded all three of your starting attacks for Defense points, give some thought to what kinds of special attacks you'll want to learn later.
- Step 9: Determine your character's Elemental Modifiers. There are eight Elements in Arpeggio: Earth, Ice, Water, Wind, Fire, Thunder, Poison, and Plant. If you don't modify anything, you'll be affected normally by all of these Elements; if you want to create an Elemental resistance, then to balance it out, you must create an Elemental weakness. So, for example, if you want your character to be resistant to Fire, then you might give them a weakness to Water or Ice (though it can be any combination; it doesn't have to make sense). Along with regular weaknesses and resistances, there are also super-weaknesses and immunities. You can buy an immunity with two regular weaknesses, or you can buy one with a single super-weakness; vice versa, you can create a super-weakness and then take two resistances. A regular weakness means that attacks of that Element will deal +2 damage to your character, a resistance means that attacks will deal -2 damage, a super-weakness means that attacks will deal +5, and an immunity means that attacks of that Element will deal no damage whatsoever (x0) to your character. Elemental Modifiers cannot be changed later in the game, so you're stuck with whatever you decide during this step. For Elements that your character is neutral to, put "--" as the modifier. If you didn't understand this explanation, there's another one on the key character sheet.
- Step 10: Flesh out your character's personality and backstory. How do your character's stats, attacks, and Elemental Modifiers relate to their personality and history? What slant does your character put on the general attitude of their Affinity? What is your character's playstyle—do they focus on beating down enemies, assisting teammates, figuring out strategies, or something else? How will your character relate to the other characters in the game? Does your character have any small quirks that might or might not come up during the course of the game? If your character does not really fit the setting of the game, how did they come to be in that setting? And so on. Include a description of what your character looks like, but remember that Arpeggio is usually a non-visual medium, so don't put too much work into that.
Now that you've completed these ten steps, you can fill out the following character sheet. Note
that your character's Attack Power, Magic Power, and Brain Power are all set to 1; you cannot
affect the starting values of these stats, so you don't have to worry about them for now. Attack,
Magic, Brain, and Defense stats are not increased by leveling up, but rather at the whim of the
Maestro, so usually you get to pick one of the four to increase by 1 point at the end of each
significant portion of the plot, or else you have to specifically seek out special items that
grant permanent increases to these stats. Note that your basic attack (from Step 6) will deal
damage equal to your Attack Power, so, to start with, it will only deal 1 damage. Your character
may also start with some items, money, and/or armor, but it will be up to your Maestro to decide
whether or not to use the default items and armor on this website and what kind of currency to
use in the game, so for now we won't worry about that (but if you want to browse the defaults,
here are items and here are
suits of armor).
For printable blank character sheets and the like, check here.
- Name: «see Step 1»
- Player: «your name here»
- Affinity: «see Step 2»
- Level: 0
- XP: 0/20
- «see Step 3; whatever weapon type you picked, your character begins with a Weapon Level of D in that type, and an E in all other types (rendered as "Other: E")»
- Armor: None
- Money: None
- HP: 10
- VP: «see Step 4»
- MP: «see Step 4»
- Attack Power: 1
- Magic Power: 1
- Defense Power: «see Step 7»
- Brain Power: 1
- Strength: «see Step 5»
- Hand-Eye: «see Step 5»
- Platform: «see Step 5»
- Knowledge: «see Step 5»
- Clever: «see Step 5»
- Charisma: «see Step 5»
- Unique: «see Step 5»
- Weight: «see Step 5»
- AP: 0/3
- Basic Attack: «see Step 6»
- 1) «see Step 3; your character may start with a weak weapon of whatever type they specialize in»
- 2) «if you character is a magic user, they should start with a magic weapon; see here for examples»
- «see Step 8»
- «see Step 8»
- «see Step 8»
- Earth «see Step 9»
- Ice «see Step 9»
- Water «see Step 9»
- Wind «see Step 9»
- Fire «see Step 9»
- Thunder «see Step 9»
- Poison «see Step 9»
- Plant «see Step 9»
- Appearance: «see Step 10»
- Personality: «see Step 10»
- Backstory: «see Step 10»
- Trivia: «see Step 10»