I have been perusing my small collection of RPG books and looking through the interwebs for any inspiration for my article today. I have been thinking recently about the superhero genre and then also about my love of Japanese Anime. It then hit me, I still have a copy of BESM (Big Eyes, Small Mouth) 2nd Edition sitting on my shelf. I picked this up several years ago at Origins game convention in Columbus, OH. Guardians of Order published this edition and it uses the Tri-Stat System as the game mechanic. This was before White Wolf Game Studios bought the systems from Guardians of Order.
Some people may think the Tri-Stat system is very difficult to use, but I beg to differ. Having picked up the core Tri-Stat book at the same convention, I have to say the BESM rules are not hard to learn, and they use a 2d6 system to resolve issues in the game. Character creation is pretty simple as the book gives you an 8-step process to create your character. Talking to your GM is the first place to start. Making sure that you know the details about the setting and time period for the game is an important step in crafting your character in any game setting. Then you would go to the “rough” outline of your character. I use quotes around “rough” because as we all know, there will be several versions of the concept before you finalize it. I had a friend who when we would play a superhero campaign, would have at least 6 versions of his character before we even started playing.
Some of the questions that you may have to think about in your outline are 1) is the character human? In an Anime world there is a distinct possibility that the GM may allow animal races as playable in the game, especially if the setting is Space Fantasy (or space opera for you Star Wars fans). 2) What are the character’s strengths (and weaknesses)? What is the character good at? I added in weaknesses because if you are making a well-rounded character, you have to consider that any character is not good at everything. They are infallible just like we are. We would like to think that they are not, but yes they have their faults. Make them realistic and not just there to give you more points to spend on skills. 3) Would be what is the character like (age, sex, and personality, ethnic and social background.) Lastly, 4) choose a name for your character.
The next couple of creation steps are more mechanics based as they are assigning points to your stats, attributes, skills, defects (flaws), combat value, health points, and energy points. The very last thing is coming up with a background for your character. Where does the character work? Any friends? Enemies? Love interests? Family? All these help to make a well-rounded character. Once you have that down, then you are ready for play. So go out there and have fun!