Attributes, what are they? They're some things ... things, that are related to the core of the game mechanics rather closely. Yet when one refuses to go the bland way of generic ruleset, attributes can be very setting-specific, too (in the FUDGE-ish way of thinking, that is).
Taking the aforementioned into consideration, attributes can be ...
- Explicit (mentioned in the rules) or implicit (missing in writing, but considered in the minds of the players)
- Rule-determining or descriptive (these have no impact on game mechanics)
- Of equal importance or hierarchized (i.e. a "superatribute" and its children)
- Tied into the system (as in many other mechanics depending on them) or loose
- External (i.e. body mass) or intrinsic (take willpower, for example)
- etc. (feel free to add some classifications)
Now, the question is ... how should one go about determining the fitting set of attributes for a specific setting? I was thinking about sort of a factor analysis: i.e. taking a some characteristic story of the setting, writing down all the events that the characters in the story do, then finding the underlying behavioral themes underneath, and constructing the attributes based on these.
But I apparently have no idea ...
Another perspective: look at the attributes in the images related to this article. Now, how (the hell) did these people come up with their attributes?
Beware, an update (I was told that specific questions land the success around here ... and that generalizations are to be left out).
Specifically, I'm looking for a fitting set of attributes for a postapocalyptic setting that involves a lot of gritty fighting, sneaking, none of the conventional magic, and a tiny bit of steampunk/magitech, with some Jungian occultism of the soul to boot (you know, the shadow and stuff).