Rules - Skills

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Skills

Conceal Object (Dex):

This is a class skills for Aristocrats, Barbarians, Bards, Rangers and Rogues. You can use other objects, cloth, debris, false compartments, painting, etc, to conceal an item or creature. You can conceal small objects (like a knife) under your clothes. You can only conceal but not disguise an object or creature.

    Check: To conceal small items is relatively easy, while concealing huge items is very difficult. You get the modifier as for the size category (from +8 for fine objects, to -8 to colossal objects). The DC depends on the availability of material that can be used to conceal an item and on the time used to do so.

Speak Languages (Int):

Each language has a amount of points needed for speaking it well. For Loren, following list would apply:

  • Loren trade language: 2
  • High Elven: 6
  • Wood Elven: 4
  • Dwarven: 4
  • Draconic: 4
  • Enohri: 3
  • Kender Speech: 2
  • Gnome: 4
  • Ancient Loren: 4
  • Hispan: 2
  • Loren: 2
  • Roman: 2
  • Gothic: 3

The point value can vary from campaign to campaign according to the availability of a language. I.e., if there are elves everywhere and everyone speaks a bit of Elven, then it could need only 3 points to master.

When a PC gets ranks in speak language (+ bonus due to high intelligence), he can use those points to buy new languages. Every character begins with a good knowledge of his own regional language (full points or one less) for free, plus the automatic languages for his race. All other languages must be purchased.

To be able to read/write in a language, a character must have at least one point less than the maximum. So he would need 5 points in elven to be able to read/write it. If his mother tongue has not written form, then he is normally illiterate and needs to pay one point to learn the basics of reading and writing.

The feat Skill Focus (speak languages), would give a character a +2 bonus for any skill check. In addition, all languages would be easier to learn (one point less), but still require at least one point. This also applies to already known languages, so some points would be freed to be used for other languages. Apply following modifiers:

  • Learn a language of the same group: -1 point (minimum 1) - i.e., if you speak Spanish you can easily learn Italian, or a drow can easily learn sylvan elven.
  • Learn a language with a different alphabet: +1 point. An elf will get a harder time learning the hard dwarven runes.
  • Learn a language without written form or using an already known alphabet: no modifiers.

Note that an illiterate character learning a new language with written form and paying the extra point from this modifier becomes literate. This is equivalent to paying the extra point to learn the basics of reading/writing as described before.

The maximum rank of this skill is not restricted by level.

    Skill checks: If you have only a rude knowledge of a language (two points of more below the maximum), you need a check every time you want to express very complicate ideas or for special forms of the language (poems, songs, etc). You can check if you try to understand a language you don't speak with following DC:

  • same family as an already known language: DC 15 (Sylvan Elven, High Elven, Drow; German-Dutch)
  • different groups but familiar components: DC 20 (German-English)
  • no familiarity: DC 30 (English-Polish; Elven-Dwarven)
  • complex ideas DC+10
  • different alphabet, reading only: DC +5 to +20 (English-Russian +5; English-Chinese +20)
  • language require special organs or physiology (light language of will-o-wisps, smell by troglodytes or the "clicking" mandibles of thri-kreen): DC +5 to N/A

    Retry: Yes, if you can (read again, or ask the speaker to repeat)


Here some facts about the languages Naboria's and specially Loren's:

Each of the original Immortal races had an own language, based on the personality given to them by their creators. From the original languages, there are now only remainings, as these have changed through the millennia. The most important immortal races, True giants, High Elves, High Dwarves and High Humans, have also moulded the modern languages.

The language of dwarves and giants were very similar, as also were their interest, personalities and skills. The dwarves were the first to develop a writing system for their language, the runes. The original runes were very complex ideograms, each representing from simple terms like stone or dwarf, to other representing whole stories and philosophical thoughts. There were no less than 400.000 runes. The giants originally shared this system, but it didn't suit all their need and it was to complex, so they developed a set of sympler runes, keeping the most important "full runes" (runes with an own meaning) and creating "half" or "lesser" runes for a phonetical alphabet. The ideas of a phonetic alphabet was then adopted by elves, who developed an own one.

While giants, dwarves and elves were gifted with great creativity, their creativity was narrowed and directed in specific lines of thoughts created by the own personality. Humans on the other side, also gifted with creativity, were given the gift of curiosity. To learn and test whatever they find and mould it to fit own needs. The language of humans quickly adopted vocabulary of other languages, ideas, philosophies, etc. The pure human language was lost in only a few centuries.

The conservative traits of giants, dwarves and elves is reflected in the fact that these races splitted only in very few sub-races, and this only through great environmental and sociological changes. Humankind spread fast all over the world, mixed with other subraces and developed countless sub-cultures, but always keeping contact between them, thus avoiding the rising of true sub-races (i.e. different "rule traits").

On Loren, the human languages have been influenced by giants, dwarves and other minor races. The Norske languages have been derived from the language of the giants. The Norske runes are simplified giant runes. The gothic languages show a large influence from the dwarven languages, although the Gothic peoples adopted the simplified rune system from Norske.

The roots of the true lorenan languages Hispan, Loren and Roman and also the Loren Traiding Common is Aranian, which on its side was influenced by five other languages, now lost, and to a certain degree by High Elven. Old Aranian had many elements in common with the original human languages, but it is now no more possible to identify such common points. The Aranian language had no original writen form. After some time, the Norske runes were adopted as writting system, but they were modified with the time with the addition of minuscles, punctuation signs, etc. The actual alphabet found its path back to the Gothic Kingdoms and reemplaced the Norske runes there. Through centuries of wars, isolation, trade, etc. the old Norske, Gothic and Aranian languages splitted in around 2.000 languages and dialects, some of them disappeared after some time while others survived until now.

Following table shows the development and relationship of the most important languages and dialects. The red lines show the development of the alphabet.

Languages of Loren

Some Lorenan languages are comparable (but not equal) to Earth languages due to the similude of the culture and the sharing of similar pantheons:

  • Norske Languages = Finno-Ugrian Languages; Dwarves and giants as presented in common D&D games are based on the Norse mythology. As I used the same mythology here, I also used the language basics of these countries.
  • Gothic = similar to Germanic languages German, Dutch, English, Dannish, etc, adding and modifying some elements. Again, created through the idiomatic influence from dwarves.
  • Aranian (Lorenan) = Latin. Old Arania was NOT Rome (although there were some similitudes). However, I support the idea that in the Multiverse, the manifestation of ideas, motivations and idiosincracies as "Gods" means too, that some Gods from different Pantheons are one and the same. Some deities from the Finno-ugrian mythos are comparable with Romanic/Greek deities, thus the Romanic Pantheon manifested on Naboria for round 3000 years and then disappeared again. However, the religious background introduced elements of Latin into the young language of that time and became dominat with time.

It is important to say, that there is no culture comparable to Grece on Naboria, so there is no vocabulary with Greek origins (no Bibliotheka, but librarium).

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