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I've recently read through the rules for edge of the empire and age of rebellion.

Am I overlooking something or is it like this?:

  • At character creation you can increase 1 to 2 characteristics once (or one characteristic by 2) all else is way too expensive as you only have 100-110 XP to start with
  • Later on you can increase characteristics about 3 times (if you max out all 3 specialisations......possibly four times with universal or additional specs).

Thus you have your starting characteristics according to species and in addition to this 4-5 characteristics points to distribute over the course of a whole campaign?

Or did I overlook something here at character creation or during the course of the campaign?

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  • \$\begingroup\$ You might want to check Step 6 of Character Creation in relation to adding Specializations: there is no cap on the number of these added over a campaign. Developing in a Specialization is the way to increase Characteristics in play. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 9, 2015 at 3:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ To add an additional bit to Runeslinger answer, you might also consider that to this date all careers in Edge of the Empire and most of the careers in Age of Rebellion have 6 specializations, lowering the XP investment in acquiring new specializations. \$\endgroup\$
    – Cactuar
    Feb 20, 2018 at 20:34

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Yep, you're correct! You only get to improve characteristics a few times.

I think it's because the game is trying to be "low power", in a way. Since each characteristic feeds into a bunch of skills, if you could buy characteristics you'd be improving in leaps and bounds. The game doesn't want you to do that, so you're mostly limited to buying specific skills.

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    \$\begingroup\$ I agree with you that the XP system produces an emphasis on raising Skills in play, with a slower rate for Characteristics. You get to raise them less often, but they can still be improved with experience. There is no limit on the number of times a characteristic is raised in play other than the cap of 6. If you check Step 6 of Character Creation in relation to adding Specializations: there is no cap on the number of these added over a campaign. Developing in a Specialization is the way to increase Characteristics in play via the Dedication talent. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 9, 2015 at 3:17
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One thing you did miss was the opportunity to get more xp at character creation by taking more obligation/duty.You can use that extra xp to raise a little more. Though personally I always choose money to get better weapons.

Remember when creating a character though you want higher stats over skills or talents. If you get another die you can get upgrades for it later by spending Xp on skills. That also makes race selection very very important from a minmaxer point of view.

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It works like this:

At character creation, if you wish to focus on Characteristics you can generally increase 2 by 1 point each, or one characteristic by 2 points with the starting experience. If you opt to alter you starting Obligation/Duty/Morality you might be able to raise 1 more low characteristic.

Generally speaking, a lot of species offer a range of 2s to start, with a 3 and a 1. For long-term play, putting a lot of points into Characteristics makes sense, imagining the character as young and just starting out in their Career. They have raw ability, but lack experience and training. As they get involved in life in the Galaxy far, far away, they will soon improve, and some areas will improve very quickly.

In play, you may not spend XP on Characteristics. You do, however, have access to the Dedication Talent in the majority of Specialization trees. It is a lower tier Talent, and will come after some time has been spent using those abilities in play. Dedication will increase 1 chosen Characteristic by 1. This is capped at 6.

Note: You are not limited in the number or type of Specializations you choose, they simply get more expensive each time you choose to add one. This is spelled out in the Acquiring New Specializations section at the end of Step 6 in the Character Creation Chapter of the core rules for all three games. (Page 103 in AoR, for example)

Over the course of a campaign, you will have many opportunities to improve Characteristics which have been important to playing a character with those skill sets. Other than the maximum cap of 6 for Characteristics, there is no additional limit to how often you can improve them via expanding your number of Specializations and earning your way to that tree's Dedication Talent.

Note: An additional way to improve Characteristics are cybernetic replacements (Gear Section of the Chapter 5: Gear and Equipment). Typically these are used to replace lost limbs, but some cultures in the game seek out mechanical enhancement.

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