Skills describe what your character is personally capable of. If it's something outside the realms of simple day to day existence, chances are there's a skill for it. As standard, your characters are usually as good as the average person at day to day activities without having taken a skill in that area.
In Aftermath, there are 3 Tiers of Skills. During character creation, only the skills from the Basic Tier will be available for purchase. Advanced Tier skills will become available from Turn 1 onwards, and Expert Tier skills will become available from turn 8 (after the Christmas Holiday). Any skill may be bought as long as the Tier is currently available. You can take any skill, so long as that tier is available, regardless of what skills you already have.
For example: Kris wants to acquire Weapons Combat without having previously acquired Basic Combat. This is fine1) and simply represents a persistent gap in their regained memories.
New Skills are learnt automatically over the course of the game: see Advancement.
These skills are the only skills purchasable from character generation.
Tier one skills are the basic abilities that your character has managed to retain despite their amnesia. These are all general skills that can be used to approach a wide variety of different problems.
You have a basic understanding about how to explore a place. This may take the form of mapping new vistas, or delving into dark caves. Either way you are likely to discover more things in more detail than the average person.
You are aware of the basic techniques and precautions necessary to survive in the wilderness outside of Monument. Travelling through all but the most extreme terrain will be easier for you, and you (as well as those you guide) will be more likely to come out of the experience unscathed.
You are able to handle yourself in a fight. You have a fairly broad understanding of unarmed combat and have the experience to tell when the fight is too much for you to handle. Though at this level you are not more familiar with weapons handling than the average person.
You have a general grounding in medical techniques. You are able to take care of serious wounds as well as apply your medical knowledge to areas such as sanitation and disease prevention. Severe wounds are a bit too complicated for you to deal with however.
You have a rudimentary knowledge of how things work and a broad understanding of mechanical engineering. You can jury-rig simple devices out of materials you may have to hand and are able to understand problems of a mechanical nature. Electrical equipment is unfortunately beyond you at this stage.
You know how to make small or simple buildings. Assuming you have the materials you can easily make shelters or other constructs that can withstand reasonable conditions. You also have a basic understanding about the structure of existing buildings.
You know how to get your point across and make yourself understood. This can manifest as getting your voice heard in a busy situation, performing or recruiting people to join your cause. You are able to get your message out there. You also find yourself to be quite diplomatic when you need to be.
You are aware of the ways to make a basic functioning group of humans. You are able to understand the organisational setup behind many everyday occurrences that people previously took for granted. You are vital to situations that require coordination between people and you also have the basic knowledge required to set up the personnel of simple long term projects or efforts.
These skills are available for purchase from turn 1.
Tier two skills are some of the more specialised or advanced skills that your character originally had before losing their memory. They take a little longer to come back to you, but generally allow your character to perform more difficult or specialized tasks.
You have incredible talent in unearthing hidden finds. You are able to identify areas of the world likely to contain surviving artifacts as well as find items within these areas with relative ease. Without your skill, much here would remain lost.
You are able to quickly and proficiently identify the key features of any flora or fauna you come across. Others may rely on risky trial and error but you can usually get a feel for the capabilities and potential of an organism based on general principles.
You have the ability to traverse tricky terrain features. This mainly includes the ability to swim and to climb rock faces, but can apply to other difficult feats of personal terrain traversal. You are able to guide another with attention or more with good equipment.
You are familiar with many different types of transport. Driving, sailing, flying. If it’s a vehicle you have a pretty good chance of being able to drive it, if it’s working of course.
You know how to handle personal weapons whether they be melee or ranged, simple or complex. Where most people can figure out which end to hold, you can put even simple weapons to surprisingly effective use.
You are able to extend your knowledge of combat to the protection of others in your vicinity. This allows you to have the awareness and capability to protect others from danger, or at least make the danger go through you first.
You are able to reverse, or at least find a workaround for severe wounds related to physical injury. You are also able to apply your knowledge when out in the field. Prompt treatment with you nearby may lessen the severity of wounds your fellow humans take in the field.
You are very well versed in the non-surgical aspects of medicine. You are able to deal with even severe illnesses given adequate supplies. Your diagnostic skills may also discover signs of disease in your comrades before they reach a severe stage.
You are proficient in the complex field of electronic engineering. As well as being able to repair electronic devices you are also able to create them, if you can find the requisite materials. At this stage you may be able to make physical repairs to computers but you are not particularly familiar with how to use them.
You are able to set up and run factories for the dedicated production of goods of your choice. What you can make will depend on the materials and equipment you have available to you, but anything made via this skill will be available in large supply.
We suggest talking to GMs in session for more guidance on what can be made with your current setup.
You are familiar with the general principles of capturing, raising and utilising animals. This can be for useful purpose or as domestic pets, either way you will be able to direct how these animals should be dealt with.
You are able to plan and oversee the construction of large, ornate or built-to-purpose buildings and structures. Exactly what scale and quality of building you can create will depend on materials, equipment and how much free labour you can secure.
We suggest talking to GMs in session for more guidance on what can be made with your current setup.
You have a keen sense for the social and linguistic context of unknown items. You are very often able to get a sense of what an item would be used for even if you have never seen anything like it before. You also have an easier time understanding unfamiliar languages.
You have creative talent that can be put to use in a wide variety of areas. You can create music to soothe the ears, paintings to please the eyes or acting to engage the mind. You could even use this to tell convincing lies or obfuscate the truth if you were of such a disposition.
You are aware of the qualities that make for good leadership. You have a commanding presence and the ability to make and deliver a finely crafted speech. You would find it easy to rope in fellow survivors to assist you in one of your tasks.
Anybody can get a task done. But you can make sure it’s done by a 20 person team, every day, for the next year. You have the ability to organise long term schedules & rotas, co-ordinate operations or even develop a functioning large-scale organisation (assuming people are willing to follow your plans).
These skills are available for purchase from turn 8 onwards (after the Christmas Holiday).
Expert Tier Skills represent the peak of your character's former ability. These are either highly advanced or highly specialised.
You are adept at using computers. Whether trying to search through information, use it to talk to other devices, or simply make a pretty picture, if it uses a computer you can handle it.
To most people, the stars are a mystic backdrop to the nights sky, but you have more than a passing familiarity with them. While you may not remember the details of the underlying physics, you are able to use your skill combined with what you can see up there to form a pretty accurate understanding of the sky above.
Words are great for talking to people, but sometimes animals are more easy to get on with. Other times you just need to give someone a hint without talking out loud. If a situation requires communicating with something else without words, you're the one for the job.
The nervous system is a complex and delicate instrument, allowing the brain to control the body with precision and to receive information. You have some understanding of it, at least to the point of being able to tell what does what, being able to notice irregularities (and fix them, given the correct tools).
Flesh has its limitations, and there are those who wish to surpass them. You can fashion limbs of metal with greater strength and durability than those of flesh, as well as repair them should they be damaged. However, your understanding ends where flesh begins.
Simple commands can often get the job done while you're there, but to get an animal to perform complex tasks, or continue to work in your absence, requires specialised training.
Individual buildings can certainly be impressive, but it takes serious planning and knowledge to let a city function as a whole. Laying down routes for transport, power, water and other coordinated utilities on a wide scale is a task only for those as experienced as yourself.
While scavenging may be enough to get by, sometimes it's nice for things to be a little more reliable. Whether it be for clothes on your back, or food for your belly, you know how to keep produce coming, whether it be blistering summer sun, or deepest winter.
Your experience of combat situations runs so deep you are adept at recognising and controlling the whole battlefield. You are able to direct large groups of people to form a cohesive force. You can also raise the combat effectiveness of any small group with your well placed advice.
You may not know how to drive one of these things, but you sure can make it run. Your skills extend to any form of transportation at any level of technology; from bicycles to cars to planes, though you are still restricted by the materials you have to hand.
An eye for detail, looking out for the tiniest thing out of place, or a stray item that could be your next clue. Whether you're unravelling the next big conspiracy, or finding out who stole the last biscuit, you're the one with the skills to get to the bottom of things.
You are rapidly able to come to grips with even the most esoteric of technology. You have a intuitive understanding of how to connect the flux modulator to the quantum polarity diode to prevent things going haywire. Others may struggle to interact with technology that is sufficiently advanced.
- Note: “Sufficiently advanced” should be loosely interpreted as tech not currently found on Earth
You are able to apply your combat knowledge to even the most esoteric of weapons. Not only are you aware of how to get even the most sophisticated weapons to fire correctly, you are capable of using them to their maximum combat potential. Others may struggle to interact with weaponry that is sufficiently advanced.
- Note: “Sufficiently advanced” should be loosely interpreted as weaponry not currently found on Earth
You are remarkably proficient at hiding yourself or objects belonging to you. You are by no means invisible or undetectable but you are much less likely to raise an alarm or be identified when you don't want to be.
Any fool with a weapon can get someone to do their dirty work, but only a true artist can make someone want to. You know just what to say in order to get someone to do a dangerous task for you, while convincing them it was their idea and you're doing them a favour by giving a helping hand.
- Note: This will not work on PCs, and will generally only be effective in turnsheets, not during sessions
As anyone will tell you, the key to success is knowing how to promote yourself. Be it a business you're running, or simply your own self promotion, you know how to grab peoples attention. You're sure to be able to get people chatting about the things you want them talking about.
You have intricate understanding of the formation of contracts and codes of law. You are able to write them easily and have them contain as many or as little cunning loopholes as you wish. You are also able to scour those written by other people. Of course all of these documents will have only have power if you have means of backing them up.
You have a talent for making contacts and facilitating trade. You are easily able to make business contacts even in unfamiliar markets. You also tend to get more favourable exchanges than your peers. Any businesses you own are easily transformed into profitable ventures.