Introduction to GURPS Character Creation

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This page is an introduction to creating GURPS characters for forum games. The following will be written and maintained by Docbubonic (At least for now). I have run many GURPS games for people new to GURPS. In that time I've developed a method for helping people through their first GURPS characters.

Getting started: The Basics

I recommend having the GURPS Characters book. If you don't wish to spend the money on the book before seeing if you like the system or if you don't have the money to buy it, then I recommend doing several things. First download this:

GURPS Lite

This is short book condensing the rules of GURPS down to make things more manageable for people new to GURPS. This will give you a good start to make a character.

Building the character

One of two ways to go about putting the character together. The first is to figure out character options and calculate the character manually. The second option is to use a chargen program to keep track of the calculations. There are two options for chargen programs. The first is Professor von Explaino's online GURPS character sheet, which is built with GURPS Lite in mind. It is very user friendly. The second program is GURPS Character Sheet. Whereas Professor von Explaino's program was built with GURPS Lite, this second program has nearly all GURPS character options available. It isn't as user friendly as the first one and doesn't guide you through character creation. Both programs will do the calculations and keep track of character options. After the character is done, you can output the result. Both programs have various options for outputting character sheets. The preferable option for people in TG pbp is a text file that can be pasted into a post. Professor von Explaino's program outputs to text. The GCS only outputs results into html or pdf. Any output from the GCS needs to be copied and pasted into a word processor program so that it's plain text. Both of these programs are free.

Character Options

There are a lot of options to consider when making a character. The GURPS Lite document limits choices, but it still can be a daunting task to figure out what choose. The following are some guidelines on character options.

Attributes

The starting point of a character are its four basic attributes: Strength (ST), Dexterity (DX), Intelligence (IQ), and Health (HT). The GURPS Lite book goes over these, but I want to point out a chart that might get over looked:


6 or less: Crippling. An attribute this bad severely constrains your lifestyle.

7: Poor. Your limitations are immediately obvious to anyone who meets you. This is the lowest score you can have and still pass for “able-bodied.”

8 or 9: Below average. Such scores are limiting, but within the human norm. The GM may forbid attributes below 8 to active adventurers.

10: Average. Most humans get by just fine with a score of 10!

11 or 12: Above average. These scores are superior, but within the human norm.

13 or 14: Exceptional. Such an attribute is immediately apparent – as bulging muscles, feline grace, witty dialog, or glowing health – to those who meet you.

15 or more: Amazing. An attribute this high draws constant comment and probably guides your career choices.


For the most part, I'd recommend having basic attributes that fall between 9 and 12 for a 100 point character.

GURPS Lite covers secondary characteristics; image and looks; social background; wealth and influence well enough. No need to elaborate on these.

Advantages

Disadvantages

Quirks

Skills