Headway

Skills
The next step of character creation is to familiarize yourself with Skills.

All characters have a set of Skills; knowledge they learn and training they pick up over time. Like all aspects of character advancement, gaining and improving Skills is handled through spending Experience Points to purchase the appropriate Edges, but it is important to first understand the general importance of Skills to a character.

Whenever a character attempts an action and the GM asks them to make a check, the check is always based on one of the character’s Attributes. However, there is a limit to how well a character can do without some kind of training, even if they have very good Attributes. Having appropriate Skills to apply to a check a character is attempting helps the character improve their chances of success.

There is no pre-set list of Skills in S4E; instead, Skills are created by players and the GM as they are purchased for a character. In this way, each character's list of Skills may be unique, based on the Skills their player purchases and works with the GM to create and define. A general rule-of-thumb for creating a Skill is that it should pertain roughly to the same amount and scope of knowledge as an introductory high school or college class (for example, "Biology," "Chemistry," and / or "Physics" instead of just "Science").



Edges
The next step of character creation is to familiarize yourself with Edges.

Edges are unique features and special qualities which help to set characters apart from one another and make them special; whether by establishing some narrative or personal aspect of the character, improving some quality about them (such as Attributes), awarding and improving Skills, applying bonuses to certain kinds of checks they make, or by altering the rules as they apply to the character.

It is important to note that characters' basic Racial powers (such as flight or magic) are represented by Edges which they have access to because of their Race, but characters do not automatically gain these Edges; they must be purchased like any other Edge in order to gain their benefits.

Some Edges are restricted to certain Races, or require having other Edges first, before they can be taken. Additionally, a few Edges can be purchased multiple times; otherwise each Edge can only be taken once. All Edges cost a certain amount of Experience Points to purchase.

Edges are the primary method of character advancement; simply put, characters in S4E advance by gaining Experience Points and spending them to purchase Edges.



Experience
The final step of character creation is to check with your GM to find out how many Experience Points the characters in your group have to spend on purchasing Edges, and then to purchase Edges by spending those Experience Points. More detailed information on spending Experience Points and purchasing Edges, as well as the complete list and library of Edges in S4E, can be found in the Character Advancement chapter of this book.

Your GM may decide not to make up their own amount of Experience Points the characters in your group begin with, and may instead use one of S4E’s pre-set totals, reflecting a general starting point (or “tier”) for the characters in your group. S4E’s pre-set Experience Point tiers by no means reflect all possible heights a character can achieve, only a few suitable starting points for characters being played in various types of games. These tiers, and their pre-set Experience Point totals, are:

Youth (30 Experience Points) - The Youth tier is suitable for characters who are meant to encounter fairly easy challenges with low stakes. This tier is best for helping children and beginners to become familiarized with the game.

Adult (60 Experience Points) - The Adult tier is suitable for characters who are meant to be established in the world, but are not anything special yet. This tier is best for a humble starting point, and for playing slice-of-life games.

Veteran (90 Experience Points) - The Veteran tier is suitable for characters who are meant to be somepony special, with adventures under their belt. This tier is best for playing games with a theme of adventure and some heroic action.

Heroic (120 Experience Points) - The Heroic tier is suitable for characters who are meant to be heroes of Equestria, counted on by others. This tier is best for playing high-stakes games with thrilling, ‘saving the world’ heroics.