# Where do all the numbers come from when building a character?

The issue I've encountered with my recent attempts at character creation are that, we'll I don't really understand where some of the numbers come from, the rules say do it 1 way and on character Stat block in the book you get something like +12 (2d8 +17) in this case 2d8 is a lightsaber. My question is where do the other numbers come from and how are they calculated?

• This had two questions in it. I've removed the “and also” question since we have a one question per post site format. You're welcome to ask about optimising separately, although you might want to read this advice to ensure that a question about optimisation has enough information to be answerable in a Q&A format without extensive discussion. Nov 9, 2015 at 18:35
• Can you give some more detail about which parts of the stat block seem mismatched to you? Nov 10, 2015 at 3:16
• What's confusing me is the numbers like 16 (2d8) 12 the numbers outside the quotes, I understand weapon damage but I am always stuck on this part of character creation the rest is easy enough Nov 13, 2015 at 6:52

In the stat-blocks, the attack damage includes the base damage, and any bonus damage stemming from heroic levels, ability score modifiers, feats, weapon properties, etc.

For example, a 20th level Jedi, with an 18 strength wielding a lightsaber two-handed and no feats or other sources of extra damage, would deal: 2d8 + 10 (1/2 level) + 4 (str) damage + 2 (1/2 str) = 2d8 + 16 damage.

I just noticed a clarification comment on the question, so I'm adding a bit of information to this answer to help.

Assuming the attack is listed as: "+12 (2d8 +17)" The part inside the parenthesis is what was discussed above (weapon damage + all applicable sources of extra damage). The part before the parenthesis is the attack modifier associated with the attack.

So, in the "+12 (2d8 +17)" example, the attacker has a +12 modifier on their attack roll, and deals 2d8+17 damage.

• Thanks alot, it's been very confusing, I'll upload my character here to give a better idea for builds later. Nov 9, 2015 at 18:15
• How would it look if my character was say first level with a strength of 17 with a single blade? Just to give me a better idea. Nov 9, 2015 at 18:17
• Since fractions are rounded down (unless the specific rule says otherwise), your damage modifer at 1st level with a 17 strength would be +3. Barring any other feats, that 1st level character, wielding a lightsaber would do 2d8+3 damage. At second level, that would become 2d8+4. Nov 9, 2015 at 18:24
• Where does the +16 come from? Does that have something to do with the double lightsaber? Nov 9, 2015 at 18:32
• In my example? That's 1/2 the character's level (20/2 = 10) plus 1.5 times the character's strength modifier (or wielding the lightsaber two-handed (4 * 1.5 = 6). There's a wide variety of feats, talents, and class features that can effect the damage a character deals. Without more information (and access to my books), I can't give you more specifics about how/why any given stat block has any particular damage modifier. Nov 9, 2015 at 18:37