1879: Saurids: The Sky Rider

For this week, let’s have a preview of the Saurids book. It’s still in draft, and we don’t have a publication date yet, but those of you who have played the Worst of Both Worlds demo with us at conventions have seen the hapatvnorefvar in action. And yes, the Saurid language does not fit comfortably in a human mouth. They have just as much trouble with our languages.

Hapatvnorefvos (Sky Rider)

“If I look down on you, it’s just a matter of altitude.”

The Hapatvnorefvar strut about as if they own the world. In their minds, they own the sky. Without that arrogance, that absolute certainty that each and every Hapatvnorefvos is the best cavalry warrior to ever ride a sihrstuulah into the clouds, their chance of survival would approach zero. Given the Saurids’ endemic acrophobia, their bravado may be the only thing that gets them aboard their mount and off the ground. Inveterate gamblers, Hapatvnorefvar receive a generous warrior’s support from their tribe but may be either carrying a massive surplus of favors and trade goods or be deeply in debt. They tend to regard material possessions as penalty weight, joking about having little to sort out or needing to hire someone to dispose of their estate with the gallows humor typical of those who follow extremely dangerous professions.

Important Attributes: DEX, CHA
Profession Skill: Aerial Combat
Racial Restrictions: Saurids only
Starting Equipment: Riding leathers, bow and arrows, short sword, spear, saddle and tack, mount
Starting Funds: Low
Income: Moderate
Suggested Social Level: 3

Skills and Abilities

    • Initiate
      • Core Skills
        • Awareness, Charge, Equestrian, Melee Weapons, Missile Weapons
      • Optional Skills
        • Animal Handling, Gambling, Navigation, Shake It Off, Winning Smile
    • Novice
      • Core Skills
        • Animal Bond, Bombardier, Impressive Display, Sure Mount, Taunt
      • Optional Skills
        • Animal Training, Danger Sense, Flirting, Mapmaking, Read Sky
    • Journeyman
      • Core Skills
        • Enhance Animal Companion, Mount Attack, Resist Taunt, Riposte, Second Shot, Trick Riding, Wheeling Attack
      • Optional Skills
        • Animal Companion Durability, Anticipate Blow, Leadership, Lion Heart, Long Shot, Seduction, Tactics
      • Abilities
        • The character gains +1 to their Physical Defense.
        • The character gains +1 to their Social Defense.
        • The character may spend Karma on CHA-only Tests.
        • I’m a Better Flyer Than You:The Hapatvnorefvos can use Trick Riding as if it were Maneuver, outflying their opponent to gain a tactical advantage. The character makes a Trick Riding Test against the target’s Physical Defense, spends 2 Strain if the Test succeeds, and gains a +2 Step bonus for each success on their next attack against that opponent and to the next position Test. The attack may be close or ranged, and may use any appropriate Skill that position allows, e.g., Aerial Combat or Missile Weapons. This ability can only be used while mounted and airborne.
    •  Warden
      • Core Skills
        • Champion Challenge, Double Charge, Heal Animal Companion, Wheeling Defense, Witty Repartee
      • Optional Skills
        • Call Animal Companion, Lion Spirit, Rally, Resist Pain, Strategy
      • Abilities
        • The character gains +1 to their Physical Defense.
        • The character gains +1 to their Mystic Defense.
        • The character gains +1 Recovery Test per day.
        • I’m More Eloquent Than You:The Hapatvnorefvos may augment a Champion Challenge, making it a battle of words and song as well as physical prowess and flying ability. For 4 Strain, the character may add their Taunt Rank to the initial Champion Challenge Test. The opponent or opposing leader takes the effect of Taunt whether they accept or ignore the challenge. If they ignore, their followers also take the Taunt effect as well as the penalty from Champion Challenge. If victorious, the Hapatvnorefvos may add their Taunt Rank to the Intimidate Test for an additional 3 points of Strain. The opponent may not use Resist Taunt against the augmented Champion Challenge or Intimidate Tests, but may use it as normal if Taunt is used during the duel.
    •  Master
      • Core Skills
        • Cutting Words, Multi-Charge, Multi-Shot, Relentless Recovery, Snap Shot
      • Optional Skills
        • Heartening Laugh, Life Check, Perfect Focus, Second Chance, Unflinching Fortitude
      • Abilities
        • The character gains +2 to their Physical Defense.
        • The character’s Max Karma increases by 15 points.
        • I’m More Charming Than You: The Hapatvnorefvos may add their Master-Tier Renown Interaction bonus of +3 Steps to all Social Skills and all targets, not just Interaction Tests with GMCs. This ability costs 3 permanent Damage Points to acquire.