All of the rules that govern the classes in NWN are the same way on Avlis. The point of the world is to be as all-inclusive as possible so that everyone will have an opportunity to play the kind of character they want. The general rule is that if you want to play it, you can probably manage it on Avlis. There are only a few exceptions to this rule – for example, drow and duergar do not exist on Avlis, and half-demon characters are not allowed.
One the biggest decisions you will have in creating a character is choosing what race you want to play. Each race brings with it a distinct cultural attributes, abilities, advantages and disadvantages.
As a player, you can shape whatever history or education you want into your character but choosing a race tends to bring certain permanent attributes to your character. If you play a Halfling for example, you will be of shorter stature to most of the races in NWN. You can be an unusually large Halfling but you still will be seen as a Halfling by the rest of the world. Also consider some races have an irrational dislike of other races. These are things to consider when picking a race.
The particulars of the culture of each race will not be dealt with as each can be subject to interpretation by the player when creating a character. The bonuses and penalties are described as they effect your character in the game.
Note: No PC can be one of the following:
- Ad infinitum...
The only dark-skinned elves on Avlis are Sereg'wethrin. They are not currently available as a PC race. There are no half-Sereg.
As always the common sense rule is: If you have to ask if it's fine, then it probably isn't. If in doubt, refer to the Ask the Team section on the Avlis forums.
That having been said, there are a few general guidelines for some of the classes:
Fighters are good at combat, experts with weapons and combat feats.
Barbarians are powerful and tough wild fighters. They can get themselves into a frenzy and cause massive damage to their opponents.
Rogues are experts at many skills, including some stealthy and some mechanical. Rogues also study the body and are able to target critical points and cause great pain.
Bards are masters of ballads, comedy and tragedy. Through their entertainment they can inspire all manner of emotion.
Druids are essentially priests of nature. In the older editions of the D&D Player's Handbook (PHB), druids had a very hierarchical structure to their organization. This is possible on Avlis too, but it is not the only norm. Structure depends on alignment. Therefore druidic orders with neutral or lawful alignments will have more order than chaotic druidic orders. Not all gods on Avlis can produce druids. In fact relatively few can. They are: Balgar, Berryn, Cha'reth, Dagath, Dre'Ana, Dru'El, O'Ma, Pelar, Skern, Titania, Verossa, and Yeraiah.
Druidic orders are often not related organizationally to the church of the same god. However, sometimes they work together, like in the case of the Church of O'Ma and O'Ma's druidic order. Sometimes there is tension between the church and its druidic order because they do things a little differently ritualistically and they have concerns in different areas.
Monks on Avlis are varied. There are a few monk orders attached to gods, like O'Ma again for instance. About half of the monk orders are attached to some natural formation or area, such as a mountain or river, and the remaining quarter of monk orders are simply contemplative - i.e., not attached to anything except existence itself. The orders that follow a deity or a philosophy are the most likely ones to produce adventuring monks. Orders that attach themselves to a formation usually stay within the vicinity, although sometimes their members are sent on vision quests.
Orders that are attached to a god will usually be closely associated with a church if that church is of lawful alignment, much like the Catholic orders of nuns and monks are today as opposed some Zen Buddhist orders.
See also: Monk Orders.
This class is as described from the rules given for it in the Player’s Handbook. However, Rangers on Avlis may not only take a specific race as a hated enemy, but also a specific organization or group, such as the Green Order or the Equalizers of Mikon.
Eventually, all rangers come to follow a deity, though not all of them start out that way. By the time they are able to cast divine spells, however, they have made their decisions and thrown their lot in with one of the Avlissian gods. Not all gods on Avlis can produce rangers. Only the following may do so: Aarilax, Balgar, Berryn, Dagath, Dre'Ana, Dru'El, Cha'reth, O'Ma, Pelar, Skern, Titania, Verossa, and Yeraiah. Rangers may choose any god that fits their moral alignment. That is, for example, any good ranger may follow Cha’Reth, O’Ma, or Dru’El. Any neutral ranger may follow Skern, Dagath or Yeraiah, and any evil ranger may follow Verossa.
Rangers gain their spells from the god(s) they follow, much the same way a Cleric or Paladin does. It does not come from nebulous force of nature, or the earth itself. It is the power of their god, channeled though them. It isn’t the ranger who picks the target of lightning when he calls it down, but rather his god that directs it.
The only place where this is not true is in orcish society.
- Orc mages are hunted down and killed by the other orcs because long ago all of the orcish mages banded together to cast a spell against their enemies and it backfired as a great explosion, destroying almost every orc in the world. Only the intercession of Mikon saved the orcs from being wiped out completely by the other races.
- Shortly after this time, the Dominators of Valok were founded as a deterrent against orc mages. Their mission was to finish the extermination of mages that began with the explosion they caused at the end of The Great War. Even today, the Dominators are not fond of arcane casters, though they are willing to accept their existence, unless they are an orc.
- Also in present day, any non-orc mages entering into orcish society are also hunted down and killed. Generally, all orcs and half-orcs raised around orcs have a hatred for mages that borders on violence. Things like public spell casting and talk of magic are generally a no-no around orcs, but in other places they are only met with suspicion.
Paladins are the holy warriors of Gorethar, one of the nine major gods of Avlis. Thus one who plays a paladin is automatically a follower of Gorethar.
The following is a list of suggested domains in NWN for clerics to take based on the god/goddess they worship. Please note, this is not a list of required domains, only suggestions. No one will be asked to change their domains or remake their character. If a DM sees someone playing a Cleric of Gorethar (or any other Avlis deity) with domains not listed here, they will do nothing about it. The majority of this list was written by Spell Singer, and edited, approved by the Avlis staff. Consider these the officially suggested domains. Detailed information on the deities of Avlis can be found in Culture and Religion.
Note: If you wish to choose a deity please ensure it is from the Avlis pantheon.
- When casting divine spells on Avlis, you must have a valid Avlis deity in your deity field to cast spells above 3rd level. This applies for other divine casting classes, as well as cleric (druid, ranger, paladin and blackguard).
Deities and Recommended Cleric Domains
Note: Any bizarre background, or any background which does ~not~ fit in with Avlis lore/norms ~must~ be cleared with the team.
Rules regarding naming conventions can be found here: PC Names
Note: A common sense rule is that if you have to ask if the name is fine then it probably isn't.
Regarding Elven skintones:
Note: The rule about skintones is a common sense rule. This applies not only to elves but also to most races. If you are unsure of what the acceptable skintones are for your PC race please consult the Avlis wikipedia or follow one of the links above.
If you have a PC with a bizarre colouring please contact the team and we will arrange to do a rebuild.
Other Creation Guides
BioWare Character Creation Guide - Internet Archive link.
FatherMatt's Musings on Character Creation - Internet Archive link.
Character Creation FAQ (BioWare) - Internet Archive link.