If you need more information on Attributes, Skills, and other character traits from World of Darkness, you can refer to the posts we will have for them in the future.
Step 1: Decide on a concept as you would in regular World of Darkness games.
Figure out what your character is like. Who is she? How did she die? What was she thinking when she died? Did she want to continue living, or was she ready to go? What would she have done if she was given a second chance?
It usually helps to make your concept a phrase, or something akin to a TV Trope. I’ve also had players build their character around a quote.
Having a solid concept will also help you determine your Virtue or Vice (or Anchors, if you want to use that instead), which is pretty important to several Storytelling systems in World of Darkness proper and in Card-centric games.
Step 2: Select your Attributes, Skills and Skill Specialties.
As per character creation rules for World of Darkness, dot distribution for Attributes is 3/2/1 and dot distribution for Skills 11/7/4, with the first number on each corresponding with the sphere (i.e. Mental, Physical, Social) that the player has selected as their character’s primary sphere, the second number with their secondary sphere, and the third number with their tertiary sphere.
All mortals have a baseline dot rating of 1 for each Attribute to begin with. No character starts with a dot in any Skill.
All mortals also have three free Skill Specialties that they may distribute to any three Skills that they possess at least one dot in.
At character creation, purchasing the fifth dot in any Skill or Attribute costs two dots.
Step 3: Determine your Arcana.
The Arcana of your character is a direct reflection of the kind of death they experienced, and the essence of their “dying will” – that is, the thoughts and emotions they had at the time of death. As the Major Arcana represent the fundamental stages of a human being’s life, so it is that a Card’s Arcana is the stage they were at before they drew their Second Breath.
Step 4: Determine your character’s Vigor Rating and starting pool of Anima.
Reference link here. All Cards begin with one free dot of Vigor. Note, however, that the player can, at character creation, opt to increase his starting Vigor rating at the cost of three Merit dots per increase.
Variant rule: For characters that started out with another template before becoming a Card, they are welcome to sacrifice Merit dots specific to their former class in order to increase their Vigor.
All Cards begin with an Anima pool equal to half their maximum Anima pool as determined by their Vigor.
Step 5: Plug in your character’s Synergy.
Reference link here. Unless you and your ST have determined otherwise, your character starts out with a Synergy Rating of 7.
Step 6: Take note of the unique abilities Cards gain at their Second Breath.
They’ve been described at length in this section.
Step 7: Select starting Social Links
All Cards begin with one dot in their own Arcana’s Social Link, to reflect the start of their relationship with their Persona. The initial “cap” on how many dots the Card can possess in his Social Link with his Persona is limited by his Resolve.
Starting Card characters have six additional Arcana dots that they may allocate into their starting Social Links. The initial “cap” on how many dots the Card can possess in any of these starting Social Links is limited by his Vigor rating.
The player must be able to explain the relationships that these starting Social Links are related to, and he have sufficient in-game justification for the “depth” he possesses with his relationship. Relationships with the characters of other players is, of course, allowed provided that both sides consent.
All Cards begin with the one-dot ability of their own Arcana’s Social Link for free, and gain the abilities related to the dots they allocated to their other Social Links for free.
Step 8: Select Merits.
You have seven dots to spend if you’re building a Card from scratch – if you’re coming in from another greater template, check with your ST. Make sure to check the section on Card Merits over here.