The Speaker

You’re good with words and good with people. You talk your way past challenges and out of jams, and you get people to do what you want.

Individual Role: Speakers are smart and charismatic. They like people and, more important, they understand them. This helps speakers get others to do what needs to be done. 

Group Role: The Speaker is often the face of the group, serving as the person who speaks for all and negotiates with others. Combat and action are not a Speaker’s strong suits, so other characters sometimes have to defend the Speaker in times of danger.

Societal Role: Speakers are frequently political or religious leaders. Just as often, however, they are con artists or criminals. 

Advanced Speakers: Higher-tier speakers use their abilities to control and manipulate people as well as aid and nurture their friends. They can talk their way out of danger and even use their words as weapons.

Suggested Character Descriptions: diplomat, charmer, face, spinner, manipulator, minister, mediator, lawyer


When playing a Speaker, you can spend 1 XP to use one of the following player intrusions, provided the situation is appropriate and the GM agrees.

Friendly NPC: An NPC you don’t know, someone you don’t know that well, or someone you know but who hasn’t been particularly friendly in the past chooses to help you, though doesn’t necessarily explain why. Maybe they’ll ask you for a favor in return afterward, depending on how much trouble they go to.

Perfect Suggestion: A follower or other already-friendly NPC suggests a course of action with regard to an urgent question, problem, or obstacle you’re facing.

Unexpected Gift: An NPC hands you a physical gift you were not expecting, one that helps put the situation at ease if things seem strained, or provides you with a new insight for understanding the context of the situation if there’s something you’re failing to understand or grasp.


You get 6 additional points to divide among your stat Pools however you wish. 


First-tier speakers have the following abilities:

Effort: Your Effort is 1.

Genius: You have an Intellect Edge of 1, a Might Edge of 0, and a Speed Edge of 0.

Cypher Use: You can bear two cyphers at a time.

Weapons: You can use light weapons without penalty. You have an inability with medium and heavy weapons; your attacks with medium and heavy weapons are hindered.

Starting Equipment: Appropriate clothing and a light weapon of your choice, plus two expensive items, two moderately priced items, and up to four inexpensive items.

Special Abilities: Choose four of the abilities listed below. You can’t choose the same ability more than once unless its description says otherwise. If there is a point value after the name, that is the cost to activate that power once.  Abilities tagged as Action require an action to use. Abilities tagged as Enabler are always in effect. 

Anecdote (2 Intellect points): You can lift the spirits of a group of creatures and help them bond together by entertaining them with an uplifting or pointed anecdote. For the next hour, those who pay attention to your story are trained in a task you choose that’s related to the anecdote, as long as it’s not an attack or defense task. Action to initiate, one minute to complete. 

Babel: After hearing a language spoken for a few minutes, you can speak it and make yourself understood. If you continue to use the language to interact with native speakers, your skills improve rapidly, to the point where you might be mistaken for a native speaker after just a few hours of speaking the new language. Enabler

Demeanor of Command (2 Intellect points): You project confidence, knowledge, and charisma to all who see you for the next hour. Your demeanor is such that those who see you automatically understand that you are someone important, accomplished, and with authority. When you speak, strangers who are not already attacking give you at least a round to have your say. If speaking to a group that can understand you, you can attempt to have them produce their leader or ask that they take you to their leader. You gain a free level of Effort that can be applied to one persuasion task you attempt during this period. Action to initiate.

Encouragement (1 Intellect point): While you maintain this ability through ongoing inspiring oration, your allies within short range ease one of the following task types (your choice): defense tasks, attack tasks, or tasks related to any skill that you are trained or specialized in. Action

Enthrall (1 Intellect point): While talking, you grab and keep another creature’s attention, even if the creature can’t understand you. For as long as you do nothing but speak (you can’t even move), the other creature takes no actions other than to defend itself, even over multiple rounds. If the creature is attacked, the effect ends. Action

Erase Memories (3 Intellect points): You reach into the mind of a creature within immediate range and make an Intellect roll. On a success, you erase up to the last five minutes of its memory. Action

Fast Talk (1 Intellect point): When speaking with an intelligent creature who can understand you and isn’t hostile, you convince that creature to take one reasonable action in the next round. A reasonable action must be agreed upon by the GM; it should not put the creature or its allies in obvious danger or be wildly out of character. Action

Inspire Aggression (2 Intellect points): Your words twist the mind of a character within short range who is able to understand you, unlocking their more primitive instincts. As a result, they gain an asset on their Might-based attack rolls for one minute. Action to initiate

Interaction Skills: You are trained in two skills in which you are not already trained. Choose two of the following: deceiving, persuading, public speaking, seeing through deception, or intimidation. You can select this ability multiple times. Each time you select it, you must choose two different skills. Enabler

Practiced With Medium Weapons: You can use light and medium weapons without penalty. If you wield a heavy weapon, attacks with it are hindered. Enabler

Spin Identity (2+ Intellect points): You convince all intelligent creatures who can see, hear, and understand you that you are someone or something other than who you actually are. You don’t impersonate a specific individual known to the victim. Instead, you convince the victim that you are someone they do not know belonging to a certain category of people. “We’re from the government.” “I’m just a simple farmer from the next town over.” “Your commander sent me.” A disguise isn’t necessary, but a good disguise will almost certainly be an asset to the roll involved. If you attempt to convince more than one creature, the Intellect cost increases by 1 point per additional victim. Fooled creatures remain so for up to an hour, unless your actions or other circumstances reveal your true identity earlier. Action

Terrifying Presence (2+ Intellect points): You convince one intelligent target of level 3 or lower that you are its worst nightmare. The target must be within short range and be able to understand you. For as long as you do nothing but speak (you can’t even move), the target is paralyzed with fear, runs away, or takes some other action appropriate to the circumstances. In addition to the normal options for using Effort, you can choose to use Effort to increase the maximum level of the target. Thus, to terrorize a level 5 target (two levels above the normal limit), you must apply two levels of Effort. Action

Understanding (1 Intellect point): You observe or study a creature or object. Your next interaction with that creature or object gains one asset. Action

Speaker Background Connection

Your type helps determine the connection you have to the setting. Roll a d20 or choose from the following list to determine a specific fact about your background that provides a connection to the rest of the world. You can also create your own fact.

d20 Background

1 1 One of your parents was a famous entertainer in their early years and hoped you would excel in the same medium.

2 When you were a teenager, one of your siblings went missing and is presumed dead. The shock rent your family, and it’s something you’ve never gotten over.

3 You were inducted into a secret society that claims to hold and protect esoteric knowledge opposing the forces of evil.

4 You lost one of your parents to alcoholism. They may still be alive, but you’d be hard pressed to find forgiveness.

5 You have no memory of anything that happened to you before the age of 18.

6 Your grandparents raised you on a farm far from bustling urban centers. You like to think the instruction they gave you prepared you for anything.

7 As an orphan, you had a difficult childhood, and your entry into adulthood was challenging.

8 You grew up in extreme poverty, among criminals. You still have some connections with the old neighborhood.

9 You served as an envoy for a powerful and influential person in the past, and they still look upon you with favor.

10 You have an annoying rival who always seems to get in your way or foil your plans.

11 You’ve worked yourself into the position of spokesperson for an organization or company of some importance.

12 Your neighbors were murdered, and the mystery remains unsolved.

13 You have traveled extensively, and during that time you accumulated quite a collection of strange souvenirs.

14 Your childhood sweetheart ended up with your best friend (now your ex-best friend).

15 You are part of a maligned minority, but you work to bring the injustice of your status to public attention.

16 You’re part owner of a local bar, where you’re something of a whiz in creating specialty cocktails.

17 You once ran a con that cheated important people out of money, and they want revenge. 

18 You used to act in a traveling theater, and they remember you fondly (as do people in the places you visited).

19 You are in a close romantic relationship with someone in local politics.

20 Someone out there tries to pose as you, using your identity, often for nefarious ends. You’ve never met the culprit, but you’d certainly like to.