Removing Attributes?

Its come up in discussion a few times before - that removing attributes within the game wouldn't have a great impact.... you agree?

I'm considering this for a future saga I'm preparing to run later this year and I'm trying to thought-map out all of the possible issues.

Myself, I don't find them particularly interesting narratively nor mechanicly - my group is very new to ArM (couple of false starts in the past), so finding some easy pieces to reduce starting complexity will be useful (current plan will be for players to have magi and grogs, no companions to begin with).

Any input is welcome :slight_smile:

Well for beginners I erase skills and they play Faerie/mundane Grogs with the main 8 characteristics only - way much easier !

we're coming off the back of a Mage the Awakening 2nd Ed game - playing grogs isn't gonna cut it :wink:

I am also drawn to the idea of removing attributes, not least because I also like the idea of using 2d6 rather than 1d10 for ability rolls as discussed in the current issue of Sub Rosa, and I think asking players to add two scores on their character sheet and also add the numbers showing up on two dice is a bit too fiddly.

But if I was to make the change I would look at adding some new Virtues and Flaws to play a similar role that having a high or low score in particular Characteristics has at the moment (this has also been suggested before, I think by Timothy Ferguson). You wouldn't want to reproduce every possibility that you have at the moment (or you might as well stick with what we have), but could provide options for 'Strong', 'Perceptive', 'Slow', etc., where the Virtues would do something similiar to Puissant (Art) but affect a defined range of abilities rather than a single one, and the Flaws would work similarly but have a negative effect. Some attributes cover a broad range of qualities, and you could have separate Virtues for different aspects of them, e.g. physically attractive versus charismatic (both under PRE), dexterity (actual fine motor control) versus agility (both under DEX). They would come at a cost depending on how much effect they would have in the game.

While you might end up with lots of options, in practice I imagine any player will only take a couple of them, and so for most ability rolls they won't be adding anything (or taking anything away). In character creation, players would likely focus on the most significant features of their PCs, and the many +1s and -1s that currently litter characters sheets and don't bring much to the game will fall away.

I think you would need to allow players to spend some additional points on Virtues that wouldn't need to be balanced by points spent on Flaws to make up for the points they no longer spend on Characteristics.