Curse of Strahd
General rules for character creation are per the Player's Handbook, except as noted. In some cases, rules from the PHB may be called out for emphasis. We will also be using a Session 0 to build group dynamics.
Drawing from the PHB, Chapter 1:
0. Exceptions and Notes
Characters will start at 3rd level. It's sometimes phrased that "3rd is the new 1st" in 5E. These levels move quickly and most published adventures skip over them or have a contrived intro to advance the characters.
The Ravenloft setting is more urban and rural (i.e. non-dungeon) than most published adventures. Reliance on heavy armor may prove more of a liability than boon.
3. Determine Ability Scores
Use a 27 point buy to determine ability scores. Note that the "standard array" of 15, 14, 13, 12, 10, 8 can be built from this and may be an easier starting point.
4. Describe Your Character
The normal backgrounds will be available, but some level of customization should be expected. Ideals, bonds, and flaws will be much more heavily discussed and should not be chosen from a list. Crafting of these will be similar to aspects in Fate.
5. Starting Equipment
Although PCs will start at 3rd level, initial equipment will be as if creating 1st level characters. In 5E, there is minimal expectation of treasure over these levels and the mists will make anything "at home" quickly irrelevant. Each PC will <u>potentially</u> receive a small bonus item at the level of a healing potion.
6. In Play
Encumbrance — We will use standard encumbrance.
Multiclassing — Permitted, but confirm before assuming.
Feats — Ability Score Improvement is the assumed default. Feats are available, but subject to DM approval. As a general rule of thumb, feats exist to add flavorful abilities to characters, not to simply "power up".