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Looking into some builds online I perceived that some people have two or three ability scores at 8, even if this cannot be explained by the Ancestry Flaw.

Is there any way to exchange Ability Scores (as in Pathfinder 1e, where you could do stuff like -1 Dex/+1 Int as you wish)?

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2 Answers 2

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No, there is not.

When written, Patta's answer was correct. There was previously a rule that allowed a player to decrease two stats in order in increase a third. However, as of approximately January 2023, that rule has been removed. Indeed, the link in Patta's answer now shows the updated text. (Reposting for ease of use: Character Creation, Step 6 (Archives of Nethys))

Optional: Voluntary Flaws
Sometimes, it’s fun to play a character with a major flaw regardless of your ancestry. You can elect to take additional ability flaws when applying the ability boosts and ability flaws from your ancestry. This is purely for roleplaying a highly flawed character, and you should consult with the rest of your group if you plan to do this! You can’t apply more than one flaw to any single ability score.

You may still choose to take an optional flaw, but as-written, you no longer have the option to boost a different ability score as a result of the flaw.

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    \$\begingroup\$ This removal of a freeform boosting option may sound like a total nerf to character creation, preventing you from making your burly Gnome warrior you were dreaming of. However, you have to realize that at the same time they also added this: " Instead of using your ancestry's specific boosts, you always have the option to replace your ancestry's listed ability boosts and ability flaws entirely and instead select two free ability boosts when creating your character." So you now never have to take an inconvenient ability flaw just to use an ancestry you like. Go make that pixie Barbarian! \$\endgroup\$
    – T.E.D.
    Oct 24, 2023 at 22:14
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"Voluntary Flaws" are an option during character creation

There is an option detailed in the "Character Creation" Chapter of the rulebook called "Voluntary Flaws". This can be found in a sidebar on page 26 of the basic rules and allows a player to pick 2 additional flaws for their character to get an additional free ability boost.

Sometimes, it’s fun to play a character with a major flaw even if you’re not playing an ancestry that imposes one. You can elect to take two additional ability flaws when applying the ability boosts and ability flaws from your ancestry. If you do, you can also apply one additional free ability boost.

For the full rules, including special restrictions for the flaws and boost, see Character Creation, Step 6 (Archives of Nethys)

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    \$\begingroup\$ I'm not sure it's an 'optional rule' or just optional because characters don't need to use it. Based on how it's presented in the book it seems more the latter. \$\endgroup\$
    – brandon
    Mar 29, 2022 at 14:07
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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, I instantly registered it as an optional rule because of its placement in a sidebar. Never realized that it is in fact not an optional rule. Fixed it in the answer :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Patta
    Mar 29, 2022 at 21:53

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