Campaign of the Month: September 2013
Read Write Language talent
Step: Rank + PER
Strain: 1 (see text)
The adept learns to read and write different tongues and may learn a maximum number of languages equal to his Read/Write Language Rank. If he has an unassigned Read/Write Language Rank available, the adept can attempt to learn a new language by reading at least one page of text written in the language for at least one minute, then making a Read/Write Language Test against the language’s Learning Difficulty. If successful, he learns the language and notes it on his Character Record Sheet. If the test fails, the adept cannot attempt to learn that same language again until he improves his Read/Write Language Rank—he can attempt to learn other languages or dialects, however. Once a Rank has been assigned to a language it cannot be used to learn any other language. The Learning Difficulty for the different racial languages is shown in the Language Table. The numbers reflect the difficulty of learning the base “racial” versions of these languages.
When reading, the adept makes a Read/Write Language Test to see how well he understands the content. The Test Result determines the level of comprehension. Simple sentences or ideas, such as “The mayor’s house lies east of here,” only require a result of 2; histories or legends containing peculiar idioms or flowery phrases require a result of 6; manuals or other books filled with jargon specific to a field of study require a result of 10; understanding philosophical treatises on the nature of magic, or other writings filled with specialized academic language and abstract ideas, requires a result of 13. When writing, use the same Difficulty Numbers as for reading, depending on the complexity of the topic the adept is writing about. The effect of each Test lasts for a number of hours equal to the adept’s Read/Write Language Rank, allowing reading and writing at the level achieved by the Test Result. If the adept is required to read or write at a more complex level, he must make another Read/Write Language Test. The Strain cost reflects the concentration required. It takes about one minute to reading a page of text; writing a page of text takes about ten minutes.
Languages are often complex and most possess many different variations, or dialects. These dialects are sometimes regional, others by city, or even by kaer. Adepts attempting to learn a dialect add +2 to the Learning Difficulty of the base “racial” language. The adept must know how to read and write the base “racial” language before he can attempt to learn a dialect of that language. Once learned, any dialects that an adept knows are recorded in parentheses on the adept’s Character Record Sheet beside the language it is based on. An adept can learn a number of dialects for each “racial” language he knows equal to his Read/Write Language Rank. For example, all player characters begin game play knowing how to read and write Dwarf with a Throalic dialect, noted in parentheses on their Character Record Sheet. When attempting to read or write in a dialect, an adept who knows the base “racial” language, but not the dialect, adds +2 to the Difficulty Number of his Read/Write Language Tests.