Character Creation

"And heaved and heaved, still unrestingly heaved the black sea, as if its vast tides were a conscience; and the great mundane soul were in anguish and remorse for the long sin and suffering it had bred." - Herman Melville
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Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 12:32:50 Friday, 27 June, 2014

In Vanaheimr 3: Aurora Borealis, the most important thing is you. Better make yourself remarkable.

To play V3, fill out and post the character sheet seen below. Every field must be be filled out.

Roughly, Origin decides your nationality (limited to the peoples that are active on the Island). Exile decides your reason for being on the Island, Profession decides your career path, your ship, your crew, abilities to some extent, and so on. Sin and Virtue give you positive and negative effects in certain situations. Element... well... we'll see.

As for personal, more exact biographies, you'll have to keep that to yourself for now, and work out the details with me.
You must select a place of origin. This decisions has some rather obvious consequences.

The Albionian Protectorate, perfidious as always, sits proud on her island. After years of civil war, Albion is again growing, ready for expansion. Her sailors have been a constant presence on the Island since the very first exploration - as have her scoundrels, swashbucklers and soapbox agitators. Letters of Marque especially have quite the tradition in the country. Your predecessors have paved the way for you, and now it's time to make your own mark.

The Ashmen of old may or may not have landed on the Island, but it was the Batavians who rediscovered it. The Batavian League, less a nation and more a conglomerate of mercantile city-states, was eager to jump on the opportunity for profit up in the north. Unscrupulous at heart, your compatriots have indeed profited greatly, and their presence on the Island is by far the largest - if divided. Might come in handy.

Descended from the Ashmen, who spread far and wide, the Scandian Union is more or less bound to be a diverse state, internally fragmented yet united. Never an as strong force navally as their primary Batavian and Albionian rivals, the Scandians none the less hold the strongest historical claim to the Island, and your countrymen don't mean to relinquish it. It's doubtful your ancestry will do you any good up here though, where blood is as thick as seawater.

The Tsardom of Muscovy has plenty of subjects on the Island, but very little influence. Lacking the naval and economic power of the Western states, and facing enemies abroad and at home, the Tsar holds little interest in northern whaling, mining or even piracy. Rather, most of you Muscovites are either Pomors - hardy, semi-nomadic coastal hunters, involved in the fur trade and paying little heed to the capital - or political or religious dissidents. The exotic Easterners are treated by outcasts by most Westerners, but your skin is thick enough to take it.

Somewhat of an outsider, the Gallic Realm has always been a minor player in the competition for blubber, coal and other resources, but has still managed to retain a more or less permanent presence. You must always watch out, however, as neither the situation back home or the numbers will be on your side. Often, your religion puts you add odds with the others as well, but that's not a problem a Gallic musket can't solve.

A colourful yet common sight up here in the north, you Biscayans - who may hail from either Gaul or Hispania, but identify with neither - have been an integral part of the Island since the first people came here, providing vital knowledge in the art of whaling completely unknown to northerners. Now, with your tradecraft spreading to others, you are gradually growing obsolete, and being Paptist doesn't help.

You are, by far, the rarest of sights up here. The Children of Israel may have minor enclaves in Scandia and Albion, but religious persecution means they would hardly be offered any quarter on the High Seas. It is more likely you came here with the slightly more tolerant Batavians, or perhaps something even more southern. Regardless, you will no doubt be on your own during the Long Lights and Long Darks, with only Hashem to watch your back.
You must select a reason why you're where you are. This decision will confer bonuses and maluses, hidden and obvious ones.

Northern Visionary
You have been driven to the icy wastes of the north not by the circumstances or outside forces, but by a voice within your own head. Be it divine inspiration to spread the word of God, a desire to explore and discover, or a troubling fixation with clubbing seals, something up there is pulling you in, a siren's call. It may be that you're a dreamer, a madman, or just passionate - regardless, whatever it is has driven you to the Islands, and you're not leaving any time soon.

Walking Driftwood
Why did you come to the Islands? No particular reason. Maybe the weather just felt appealing, maybe you lost a half-serious bet, maybe you just flipped a coin and set off. With no real reason to stay around, you just moved on. A drifter, you've always been more or less rootless, and what better place to be than the Islands - in a no man's land, nobody is at home. Maybe that's where you belong?

Frozen Outcast
You're stuck on the Island, and certainly not by choice. You've been forced to these frozen wastes by hostile forces, one way or another, directly or indirectly. Maybe you're fleeing debtors' prison or religious persecution, maybe the family felt you were too much of a disgrace to keep around, maybe your dalliance with your commander's daughter gave you a permanent reassignment to a place where the the only things that won't at least try to kill you are the reindeer. One way or another, you've effectively been given a life sentence on the Island. Might as well make the most of it.

Dutybound Servant
Honour and loyalty are important traits to have, no doubt - unfortunately, they've brought you to the Island, a sad consequence of obedience. You've come here on order of someone else, to serve a purpose. Whether you're a naval officer deployed by some lordling, a merchant mariner whose employer intends to profit through you, or even a dutiful scion who heeds the family's commands, you could have said no - but didn't. Poor choice, mayhap, but one that has been made.

Lady Luck's Castaway
Let's face it - bad luck got you in this position. Well, in some ways it may have been your own fault, but you certainly don't see how. Perhaps you were just passing by the Island when your original vessel was shipwrecked, and your ticket home was lost along with the rest of the crew. Perhaps you stowawayed on the wrong ship. Perhaps you were press-ganged by a captain short on deckhands. Either way, let's hope Lady Luck starts smiling again soon, or you're really in for some trouble.

Rising Star
Your primary concern has never been pure material wealth - nay, it's what that is in hearts and minds of others that matters. You're out to win the esteem of others, whatever the cost, be it through glory, fame, influence or power. On the Island, a man with a goal can accomplish much - even here, there are hierarchies to climb, and tales of deeds committed here - heroic or villainous - do, ever now and then, slip through to the outside world. You got a legacy to establish - better get a move on.

Fortune Hunter
As barren as the Islands may seem, and as hostile as the climate is, there is a fortune to be made here. Walrus ivory, whale blubber, polar bear pelts, black coal and other natural riches abound - and if that doesn't work out, there's always the option of piracy, whoring, preaching, and other wicked trades pliable during the long days of eternal sunlight and everlasting darkness. Be it sinful greed or Puritan work ethics, you have been driven up north to make a buck, quick or otherwise.
You must select a profession. This will decide your ship, your crew, some of your personal skills, and so on.

The mighty whales are the lifeblood of the Island, the true reason for all human activity in the region. Whaling is an extremely profitable craft, with blubber, oil, meat, ambergris and baleen fetching extravagant prices on the southern markets. A trade taught initially by the Biscayans, most nationalities have mastered whaling now. A complicated yet simple technique, it involves using small whaleboats to harpoon the great beasts, and then pulling them ashore for the slaughter. While seemingly a harmless labourer, the whaler always have a flensing knife available, for self-defence (or otherwise).
  • Ship: Full-Rigged Brig (Displacement ca. 140 tons, 6 cannons, length 75 feet)
  • Crew: 50
  • Bonus: Call Me Ishmael (Proficient whalers, whaling equipment)
The whale may be a grand prey, but smaller things aren't too shabby either. Hunting is simple living, but often profitable such. You ply your trade as a rowing trapper, your small ship's cargo compartment full of whatever prices will fetch the highest prices on the continental market. Whether it is shooting the mighty white bear, spearing walruses, trapping foxes, clubbing seals, chasing down reindeer, stoning birds, or stalking the most dangerous game, your keen eye and steady hand will net you whatever reward you seek out in the desolate wastelands.
  • Ship: Full-Rigged Brig (Displacement ca. 100 tons, 6 cannons, length 75 feet)
  • Crew: 45
  • Bonus: On the Prowl (Proficient hunters, hunting equipment)
Not all of us have an honest profession. Back home, there are frequently anti-vagrancy laws to keep the wanderers locked up, but here on the Island you can be free. No borders, no authorities, no one to hold you down... how you support yourself, that is a separate question. Scavenging, theft, begging, whatever it is - it seems to be working for you so far, at least. It will take ingenuity to survive, but survive you certainly can, as multi-faceted as you are.
  • Ship: Ketch (Displacement ca. 60 tons unloaded, 2 cannons, length 60 feet)
  • Crew: 20
  • Bonus: Jack of All Trades (Nothing, everything)
You may have no real connection to the Brethren of the Coast, but you certainly share their spirit. A true swashbuckler, you and your men hunt not for whales or bears, but for ships. Whether hiding in a secret fjord stronghold or working openly out of Smeerenburg, you put terror into the hearts of honest men. The lure of goods and gold is high, but the call of liberty even more drawing. Sailing under your own flag, and operating under a fair code, no one in this no man's land is as free as you are.
  • Ship: Sloop (Displacement ca. 125 tons, 10 cannons, length 75 feet)
  • Crew: 120
  • Bonus: Scum and Villainy (The tools of the trade, plus well-armed rogues)
The "lawful" cousin of the pirate, the privateer sails carrying a Letter of Marque from their respective nation. While not a true representative of any state's interest, you none the less serve whichever crown has given you its stamp of approval. The gains are as great as those of a buccaneer, but the lordlings back home still loom over you. Whether you're a barely concealed scoundrel or a honest man serving with honour, you'll be a target of others in this wasteland, but stand to profit too.
  • Ship: Sloop (Displacement ca. 125 tons, 10 cannons, length 75 feet)
  • Crew: 120
  • Bonus: I Am the Law (Letter of Marque, plus well-armed rogues)
There may not be many paved streets on the Island, but the few that exist are paved with metaphorical gold. All types of products can be extracted here, all fetching high prices on the continental markets. The mercantile system is slowly crumbling, and a new breed of merchant is rising. You are the first of a new generation, arriving with a pocket full of gold and a well-defended cargo ship, ready to invest and profit, no matter the cost.
  • Ship: Fluyt (Displacement ca. 300 tons unloaded, 8 cannons, length 80 feet)
  • Crew: 60
  • Bonus: Rich Man's World (Large starting funds)
The mountains of the Island are choke-full of the black gold: Coal. With the continental industries rapidly advancing, the cnorthern coal - which is of high quality, and easy available - has begun to draw many a mineral hunter, starting a mining rush. Whether self-made man of the people or affluent guildsman, you have arrived on the Island with a ship loaded with labourers and equipment to establish a claim of your own. And with a Pickaxe in one hand and a flintlockpistol in the other, you stand ready to defend it by any means necessary.
  • Ship: Fluyt (Displacement ca. 300 tons unloaded, 8 cannons, length 80 feet)
  • Crew: 60
  • Bonus: (Mining equipment, plus 120 labourers onboard)
Science is an art yet under development, but it is taking great leaps forward. An more or less secular academic, your task is to sail hunting for knowledge, either the gathering of such or its spread. You may be a nautical engineer hired to improve the material power of a nation's holdings, a naturalist searching for new flora and fauna, a physician setting bones and treating scurvy, an alchemist on a quest - doesn't matter, you still embody a light in the Island's darkness.
  • Ship: Ketch (Displacement ca. 60 tons unloaded, 2 cannons, length 60 feet)
  • Crew: 20
  • Bonus: Disciple of Truth (Scientific equipment of choice, in addition to knowledge)
Even up in the far northern seas, so far away from civilization, Man has spiritual needs. Your role is to see to that. Whether you're an up-jumped layman or an ordinated priest, you'll be in short supply. When the choice stands between a comfortable position back home and life on the Island, most stay huddled in their churches and synagogues. Up here, you are the voice of God, whether He likes it or not.
  • Ship: Ketch (Displacement ca. 60 tons unloaded, 2 cannons, length 60 feet)
  • Crew: 20
  • Bonus: Divine Mandate (The trappings of religious power)
The works of da Vinci and the other great visionaries and engineers of this age have propelled the art of aeronautics from an idle dream to a very real, if shaky, reality. The confines of the ground and the seas no longer hold mankind, only the sky - and the constraints of your yet highly primitive technology - is the limit. Coming to the Island with only your hot-air balloon rig and your own two hands, you have all that it takes to your way in a world where travel by land is nearly impossible, and the seas regularly freeze. Just watch out that you don't crash and burn.
  • Ship: Balloon (Moderate size, minor cargo capabilities, no permanent armament)
  • Crew: None
  • Bonus: Icarian Dream (Mechanical equipment, ballooning expertise)
You must select one of the Seven Sins. You may have as many negative sides as you wish, but only one will confer bonuses and maluses.

You are lustful. You intensively crave carnality, be it your neighbour's wife or something more nefarious. Your passion might cost your dearly, so thread with care.

You are gluttonous. You hunger, you consume, you indulge. Even something as harmless as drinking a bit too much firewater could spell trouble, though.

You are greedy. The desire for material possessions shine in your eyes. Money money money, it's a rich man's world. Just watch out in your pursuit of wealth.

You are slothful. Not necessarily a person of inaction - it might just be that you can't bother following things through. Be careful of the apathy in your heart.

You are wrathful. Rage rules your soul, be it through quick and bloody spite or a dish best served cold. Just make sure you don't let it control you completely.

You are envious. You may not really desire the neighbour's wife, or feel the draw of his gold, but still you'll lust for what he has. Your jealousy might be your own undoing.

You are prideful. Always the strongest, the smartest, the quickest, the most charming - in your own opinion. Failure to acknowledge reality might spell bad luck in the end.
You must select one of the Seven Virtues. You may have as many positive sides as you wish, but only one will confer bonuses and maluses.

You are chaste. Not necessarily one to abstain from carnal pleasure, you rather embody a sense of purity in soul and mind. Who knows, it might be of use one day.

You are temperate. Never one to let go, you are restrained when necessary, and moderate when under pressure. Others may appreciate that you hold back in critical moments.

You are charitable. Rather than wasting or hoarding what you have, you generously share with others, both materially and immaterially. Self-sacrifice can be necessary at times.

You are diligent. Steadfast and persistent, you're not one to give up - not in your work, not in your relations, and certainly in not when in danger.

You are patient. When others may rush ahead, you remain careful, and would rather resolve situations delicately than solve them with quick, blunt force.

You are kind. You value compassion for the sake of itself, rather than as a tool for ulterior purposes. Quick to make friends, you'll always be sure that someone has your back.

You are humble. You don't think less of yourself - you think of yourself less. Selflessness marks your path, and this modesty will make it easier to travel in the dark.
You must select an Element to align with. Choose carefully.

You are aligned with Fire.

You are aligned with Air.

You are aligned with Water.

You are aligned with Earth.

You are aligned with Aether.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Gesar » 17:47:18 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Name: Père Jean-Sylvain de Saint-Laurent, Rector of the Societas Iesu
Age: 27
Flagship: The Athalie
Origin: Gallic
Exile: Rising Star
Profession: Clergyman
Sin: Superbia
Virtue: Patientia
Element: Aether
Last edited by Gesar on 22:30:18 Friday, 25 July, 2014, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: Character Creation

Post by Huojin » 21:17:21 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Name: Semyon Nikolayevich Shergin
Age: 31
Flagship: The Leviathan
Origin: Muscovite
Exile: Northern Visionary
Profession: Trapper
Sin: Ira
Virtue: Industria
Element: Ignis
Last edited by Huojin on 14:23:47 Saturday, 26 July, 2014, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 21:30:10 Friday, 25 July, 2014

(So far, I have hint or confirmation of one Clergyman, two Buccaneers, one Corsair, one Scholar, and one possible Aeronaut. I won't forbid further entries to either category, but I would recommend that we get at least a few Whalers, Trappers, Miners and possibly Merchants, to diversify. None of these profession are stuck in that job, of course, it's just an starting position, and all of them have the versatility to do things not necessarily included in the job description.)

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Serenissima » 21:53:37 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Name: 'Prince' Hugh Hawke of the House of Percy - titular 5th Earl of Luguvalium, titular Count Palatine of Dunholme, titular Elector of Strelasund.
Age: 29
Flagship: The Fire Drake.
Origin: Albionian.
Exile: Walking Driftwood.
Profession: Corsair.
Sin: Superbia.
Virtue: Caritas.
Element: Ignis.
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Re: Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 21:58:00 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Alright, we got Seren now, and Huojin switched to Whaler. May change further character details - which, remember kids, is very okay until game start.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by BgKnight » 22:53:41 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Name: Abe Eshkenazi (The Doctor)
Age: 39
Flagship: The Sailing Hospital.
Origin: Hebrew.
Exile: Northern Visionary.
Profession: Scholar.
Sin: Ira.
Virtue: Benevolentia.
Element: Terra.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 23:04:41 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Welcome aboard, Abe.

New count: 1 Clergyman, 1 Scholar, 2 Whalers (OYID has promised to be one, Huo switched), 1 Buccaneer (Snacks has yet to sign up, but will be one), and 1 Corsair. I won't put any restrictions, but I would really appreciate some trappers, merchants or miners. The other professions are fine too, although Clergyman and Scholar may be a bit filled up. 1 Aeronaut only will be permitted, though.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Snacks » 23:08:59 Friday, 25 July, 2014

Name: "Pretty" Sara van de Zee
Age: 33
Flagship: The Painted Girl
Origin: Batavian
Exile: Lady Luck's Castaway
Profession: Buccaneer
Sin: Invidia
Virtue: Humilitas
Element: Aqua

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Re: Character Creation

Post by ykl » 10:15:55 Saturday, 26 July, 2014

Name: Edward Yorke
Age: 32
Flagship: The Golden Road
Origin: Albion
Exile: Fortune Hunter
Profession: Merchant
Sin: Avaritia
Virtue: Industria
Element: Terra

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 11:24:29 Saturday, 26 July, 2014

Thanks, ykl!

Alright, both of my whalers switched, so now we got:

1 Clergyman
1 Scholar
1 Buccaneer
1 Corsair
1 Trapper
1 Merchant
1 Miner

The ultimate thing now, I suppose, would be 1 whaler, 1 aeronaut, and 1 vagabond. Others are fine too, but totally even numbers would be interesting.

Nationality-wise, we got 2 Albionians, 1 Gaul, 2 Batavians, 1 Muscovite, and 1 Hebrew. I would recommend that 1 player picks Biscayan, and that others strongly consider Scandian. I won't force anyone in their creative decisions, but diversity is very good.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by OYID » 13:12:13 Saturday, 26 July, 2014

Name: Gregor "Greg" Vandenberg
Age: 29
Flagship: Steady Fortune
Origin: Batavian, .
Exile: Fortune Hunter
Profession: Miner.
Sin: Avaritia.
Virtue: Industria.
Element: Terra.
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Re: Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 16:49:48 Saturday, 26 July, 2014

Waiting for Litos and RinKou.

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Re: Character Creation

Post by Smyg » 20:45:21 Saturday, 26 July, 2014

Posting this on TRC's behalf.
Name: Egil Gry
Age: 28
Flagship: The Sjöorm
Origin: Scandic
Exile: Frozen Outcast
Profession: Vagabond
Sin: Ira
Virtue: Benevolentia
Element: Aer

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Re: Character Creation

Post by RinKou » 08:20:59 Sunday, 27 July, 2014

Name: Francisco-Diego Santiago-Marquez de Ayala
Age: 25
Flagship: Vanaheimer 3: Aurora Borealis
Origin: Biscayan
Exile: Northern Visionary
Profession: Aeronaut
Sin: Acedia
Virtue: Castitas
Element: Aer
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