Character traits are essentially half-feats that help customize a PC’s background and tie her to the themes and events of a particular adventure. Each character should begin play with two traits, one of which may be selected from the Carrion Crown campaign traits below.
Campaign traits are tailored to a specific Adventure Path and give your character a built-in reason to begin the first adventure in a new campaign. Campaign traits assume a lot more about your character’s backstory than do normal traits, and they are meant to help serve as inspiration for a player working to create a detailed and interesting history for her character. You have a certain amount of leeway in adjusting a campaign trait’s expected backstory once you’ve selected the trait that’s right for you; just be sure to get your GM’s approval before you run with a modified history. All of the following traits revolve around ways characters may know the late Professor Petros Lorrimor, whose funeral draws them to Ravengro, and whose final will and testament launches the Carrion Crown Adventure Path.
You can take a look at these traits to get a general, spoiler free idea of the types of foes and challenges your character might encounter over the course of the Adventure Path. Knowing that there are going to be elements of horror tainted landscapes, secret societies, foul plots, ancient magic, politics, and the like should help you build a character that fits more organically into the campaign you’re about to join.
Chance Savior: Lorrimor one day in the not so distant past. Through a matter of pure chance, you were in a position to save the late scholar’s life and did so. His gratitude was effusive, and he promised that he would never forget you. You are unsure of the nature of the summons in his will, but believe he may have listed you as a possible heir in thanks for saving him from an untimely demise. Your ability to think quickly on your feet has stayed with you, and you quite often feel that you’re in the right place at the right time.
Benefit(s): You gain a +2 trait bonus on Initiative checks.
Subject of Study: Professor Lorrimor approached you as part of his studies, as he had heard that you had survived a recent encounter with a strange monster or had another fateful encounter. Interested in the conditions of the ruin and the means by which you avoided death or injury, he met with you and maintained frequent correspondence until several months ago. The scars of your experience and his continual reminders of the encounter prompted you to hone your skills lest you someday face the same type of creature again. The professor assisted you in this endeavor, providing you with insight into the anatomy and defenses of the creature that attacked you.
Benefit(s): Years of study have improved your combat effectiveness against your chosen foe. Choose a non-humanoid creature type (and subtype if outsider). You gain a +1 bonus on damage rolls against creatures of this type. See the ranger favored enemy suggestions for a list of creature types most likely to appear in this campaign.
Inspired by Greatness: Whether you knew Professor Lorrimor well or only in passing, as a colleague or competitor, his career and lifetime of discovery inspired you to be better at what you do. As you honed your craft, you and the professor corresponded, and he was delighted to hear that he had directly or indirectly motivated you to strive for your full potential. Saddened by the news of his death, you feel that you should honor his memory by fulfilling his final wishes and attending his funeral, and by ever striving to attain greater heights and someday match the inf luence and impact of your idol.
Benefit(s): Choose one spell you can cast. From now on, you always cast this spell at +1 caster level.
Making Good on Promises: At some point in the past, Professor Lorrimor did you a favor under the condition that he would someday call on you to repay it. After he came to your aid, however, you never saw nor heard from him again, leaving you with a sense of unending anticipation that each day might be the day you were asked to return the favor. Yet that day never came, and your fears and anxiety about what the professor would call on you to do abated. Assuming the old man had either forgotten about you or died, you eventually assumed you’d never have to follow through on your end of the bargain. When you received word of the professor’s death, and that he had named you specifically in his will, your dread of what he could possibly want from you has grown throughout your entire journey to Ravengro.
Benefit(s): Years of living with the fear and uncertainty of the unclaimed debt to Professor Lorrimor have inured you to extreme anxiety. You gain a +2 trait bonus on saves against fear effects.
On the Payroll: Whether he needed a bodyguard in a rough neighborhood, a guide to an isolated archaeological dig, or information on a specialized topic, Professor Lorrimor was never shy about hiring professionals to help him attain his goals. Over the course of his long career, thousands of people throughout the world served his needs and benefited from his generous wages (usually covered by his academic benefactor at the time). He had contacts in most areas of expertise in every corner of the known world, a knack for recognizing talent, and a desire to be surrounded by the best and brightest at all times. Whatever job the professor originally hired you for, your performance captured his attention, and he hired you many times throughout your career, sometimes even for jobs away from your home, always paying your expenses and compensating you well for your time. In your area of expertise, you are among the best.
Benefit(s): Your years of hard work have paid off, granting you an additional 150 gp in starting wealth.
Teacher’s Pet: Professor Lorrimor traveled the Inner Sea region lecturing and teaching at universities in locations as far-flung as Manaket and Magnimar, and as different in scope as the bardic colleges of Taldor and the battle colleges of the River Kingdoms. Speaking before standing-room-only lecture halls on topics as widely ranging as military strategy, planar anomalies, theology, and agriculture, Lorrimor’s time was highly valued among those ambitious to benefit from his expertise. Despite this, he still managed to provide one-on-one assistance to the most promising of his acolytes. When he saw the potential for greatness in one of his charges, he took it upon himself to nurture their spark. You were such a student. Over the course of several months, you and the late professor spent hours debating the finer points of your topic of interest, and the intellectual doors he opened for you continue to flavor your outlook on the world.
Benefit(s): You gain a +2 trait bonus to one Knowledge skill of your choosing and consider it a class skill.
Resurrected: At some time in the recent past you died, but you were brought back to life—whether because of magic, a miracle of alchemy, or a mystery yet to be revealed, or perhaps because it just wasn’t your time to die yet. Whatever the nature of your resurrection, your experience gave you a fascination with death. You hoped to find some insight into the nature of mortality by reaching out to Professor Lorrimor, whom you kept in frequent correspondence with.
Benefit(s): You gain a +2 trait bonus on saving throws against death effects. In addition, you do not die until your hit points drop to a negative amount equal to or lower than your Constitution score + 4.