Belief Systems and Codes of Honor
Every point of Commitment can be used towards taking a belief system or a code of honor. These can be taken at generation or added during play for free—they carry their own cost.
Each point in a belief system or code of honor adds another +1 to a Commitment roll when resisting temptations or violations of that belief system or code of honor.
Players should suggest that they get the bonus any time it occurs to them and seems appropriate, understanding that the DM is the final interpreter of when the bonus applies and when it does not.
Beliefs and honor only provide this extra boost if they require structure and sacrifice. While they can be general, as described below, it can be entertaining to find or write up specific codes to follow.
Violating the Belief System or Code of Honor
Sometimes characters will fail to live up to the strictures of their beliefs, they will be dishonored. When this happens, they get no bonus to Commitment tests of any kind. The only way to restore the bonus is to atone, to sacrifice, to somehow symbolically restore the broken relationship. The player and DM can work together on what that looks like for the character’s situation.
Sample Belief Systems and Codes of Honor
Balance. Maintaining the Balance is the highest call. It is beyond personal fortunes, satisfaction, even life and death. The fate of the world is in the Balance, and maintaining the Balance needs your all.
Chivalry. The character believes the strong should protect the weak, that people should be treated with dignity (even foes), and that honor defines a person to the point where without it, wealth and victory and fame are hollow. Politeness symbolizes respect—give it, expect it from those with honor.
Duty. The character has sworn to uphold a duty. This duty is taxing, and requires sacrifice, but it grants meaning and pride in exchange.
Family Honor. The character values the honor of the family, and is horrified at the idea of tarnishing the family with personal misbehavior. The family’s integrity and renown gives the character strength, through attachment to it.
Hammer Faith. The Master Builder calls to you to bring order and civilization to chaos and wilderness, both in the world and in the soul. Stamp out threats. Obey the Architect. Rebuke doubt.
Idealist. The character has a vision for what the future should be. No inducement is more valuable than this dream of the future, of what should be—and could be. The character is willing to sacrifice now to draw the world closer to this dream of someday.
Pagan Faith. The wilderness teaches the nature of life; unbridled feeling, intense life in the moment, growth, beauty, sudden death. Civilization corrupts and pollutes, twisting the wilderness with pain until it lashes out to protect itself. Nurture the chaos of what-is, reject the order of must-become.