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INTELLIGENCE-BASED SKILLS

Computer Use

(Int)

Check: Most normal computer operations don't require a Computer Use check (though a character might have to make a Research check; see the Research skill description). However, searching an unfamiliar network for a particular file, writing computer programs, altering existing programs to perform differently (better or worse), and breaking through computer security are all relatively difficult and require skill checks.

Find File: This skill can be used for finding files or data on an unfamiliar system. The DC for the check and the time required are determined by the size of the site on which the character is searching. Finding public information on the Internet does not fall under this category; usually, such a task requires a Research check. This application of the Computer Use skill only pertains to finding files on private systems with which the character is not familiar.

Size of SiteDCTime
Personal computer101 round
Small office network152 rounds
Large office network201 minute
Massive corporate network2510 minutes

Defeat Computer Security: This application of Computer Use can't be used untrained. The DC is determined by the quality of the security program installed to defend the system. If the check is failed by 5 or more, the security system immediately alerts its administrator that there has been an unauthorized entry. An alerted administrator may attempt to identify the character or cut off the character's access to the system. Sometimes, when accessing a difficult site, the character has to defeat security at more than one stage of the operation. If the character beats the DC by 10 or more when attempting to defeat computer security, the character automatically succeeds at all subsequent security checks at that site until the end of the character's session (see Computer Hacking below).

Level of SecurityDC
Minimum20
Average25
Exceptional35
Maximum40

Computer Hacking

Breaking into a secure computer or network is often called hacking. When a character hacks, he or she attempts to invade a site. A site is a virtual location containing files, data, or applications. A site can be as small as a single computer, or as large as a corporate network connecting computers and data archives all over the world-the important thing is that access to the site connects the user to everything within it. Some sites can be accessed via the Internet; others are not connected to any outside network and can only be tapped into by a user who physically accesses a computer connected to the site.

Every site is overseen by a system administrator-the person in charge of the site, and who maintains its security. Often, the system administrator is the only person with access to all of a site's functions and data. A site can have more than one system administrator; large sites have a system administrator on duty at all times. A character is the system administrator of his or her personal computer.

When a character hacks into a site, the visit is called a session. Once a character stops accessing the site, the session is over. The character can go back to the site in the future; when he or she does, it's a new session.

Several steps are required to hack into a site:

Covering Tracks: This step is optional. By making a Computer Use check (DC 20), a character can alter his or her identifying information. This imposes a -5 penalty on any attempt made to identify the character if his or her activity is detected.

Access the Site: There are two ways to do this: physically or over the Internet.

Locate What You're Looking For: To find the data (or application, or remote device) the character wants, make a Computer Use check. See Find File under the skill description.

Defeat File Security: Many networks have additional file security. If that's the case, the character needs to make another check to defeat computer security.

Do Your Stuff: Finally, the character can actually do what he or she came to do. If the character just wants to look at records, no additional check is needed. (A character can also download data, although that often takes several rounds-or even several minutes, for especially large amounts of information-to complete.) Altering or deleting records sometimes requires yet another check to defeat computer security. Other operations can be carried out according to the Computer Use skill description.

Defend Security: If the character is the system administrator for a site (which may be as simple as being the owner of a laptop), he or she can defend the site against intruders. If the site alerts the character to an intruder, the character can attempt to cut off the intruder's access (end the intruder's session), or even to identify the intruder. To cut off access, make an opposed Computer Use check against the intruder. If the character succeeds, the intruder's session is ended. The intruder might be able to defeat the character's security and access his or her site again, but the intruder will have to start the hacking process all over. Attempting to cut off access takes a full round.

One surefire way to prevent further access is to simply shut the site down. With a single computer, that's often no big deal-but on a large site with many computers (or computers controlling functions that can't be interrupted), it may be time-consuming or even impossible.

To identify the intruder, make an opposed Computer Use check against the intruder. If the character succeeds, the character learns the site from which the intruder is operating (if it's a single computer, the character learns the Name of the computer's owner). Identifying the intruder requires 1 minute and is a separate check from cutting off access. This check can only be made if the intruder is accessing the character's site for the entire length of the check-if the intruder's session ends before the character finishes the check, the character automatically fails. This application of the skill can be used to intercept a cell phone conversation if the character has a cellular interceptor. The DC is 35, or 25 if the character knows the number of the phone that initiated the call.

Degrade Programming: A character can destroy or alter applications on a computer to make use of that computer harder or impossible. The DC for the attempt depends on what the character tries to do. Crashing a computer simply shuts it down. Its user can restart it without making a skill check (however, restarting takes 1 minute). Destroying programming makes the computer unusable until the programming is repaired. Damaging programming imposes a -4 penalty on all Computer Use checks made with the computer (sometimes this is preferable to destroying the programming, since the user might not know that anything is wrong, and won't simply decide to use a different computer). A character can degrade the programming of multiple computers at a single site; doing so adds +2 to the DC for each additional computer.

Scope of AlterationDCTime
Crash computer101 minute
Destroy programming1510 minutes
Damage programming2010 minutes

Fixing the degraded programming requires 1 hour and a Computer Use check against a DC equal to the DC for degrading it + 5.

Write Program: A character can create a program to help with a specific task. Doing so grants the character a +2 circumstance bonus to the task. A specific task, in this case, is one type of operation with one target. The DC to write a program is 20; the time required is 1 hour.

Operate Remote Device: Many devices are computer-operated via remote links. If the character has access to the computer that controls such systems, the character can either shut them off or change their operating parameters. The DC depends on the nature of the operation. If the character fails the check by 5 or more, the system immediately alerts its administrator that there has been an unauthorized use of the equipment. An alerted administrator may attempt to identify the character or cut off his or her access to the system.

Special: A character can take 10 when using the Computer Use skill. A character can take 20 in some cases, but not in those that involve a penalty for failure. (A character cannot take 20 to defeat computer security or defend security.) A character with the Gearhead feat gets a +2 bonus on all Computer Use checks.

Time: Computer Use requires at least a full-round action. The GM may determine that some tasks require several rounds, a few minutes, or longer, as described above.

Type of OperationDCTime
Shut down passive remote201 round per remote (including cameras and door locks)
Shut down active remote (including motion detectors and alarms)251 round per remote
Reset parameters301 minute per remote
Change passcodes251 minute
Hide evidence of alteration+101 minute
Minimum security-5-
Exceptional security+10-
Maximum security+15-

Craft

(Int)

This skill encompasses several categories, each of them treated as a separate skill: Craft (chemical), Craft (electronic), Craft (mechanical), Craft (pharmaceutical), Craft (structural), Craft (visual art), and Craft (writing).

Craft skills are specifically focused on creating objects. To use a Craft skill effectively, a character must have a kit or some other set of basic tools. The purchase DC of this equipment varies according to the particular Craft skill.

To use Craft, first decide what the character is trying to make and consult the category descriptions below. Make a Wealth check against the given purchase DC for the object to see if the character succeeds in acquiring the raw materials. If the character succeeds at that check, make the Craft check against the given DC for the object in question. If the character fails the check, he or she does not make the object, and the raw materials are wasted (unless otherwise noted).

Generally, a character can take 10 when using a Craft skill to construct an object, but can't take 20 (since doing so represents multiple attempts, and the character uses up the raw materials after the first attempt). The exception is Craft (writing); a character can take 20 because the character does not use up any raw materials (and thus no Wealth check is required to use the skill).

Craft (chemical)

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: This skill allows a character to mix chemicals to create acids, bases, explosives, and poisonous substances.

Acids and Bases: Acids are corrosives substances. Bases neutralize acids but do not deal damage. A base of a certain type counteracts an acid of the same type or a less potent type.

Type of AcidPurchase DCCraft DCsTime
AcidBase
Mild (1d6/1d10)1815101 min.
Potent (2d6/2d10)12201530 min.
Concentrated (3d6/3d10)1630201 hr.

1 The dice rolls in parentheses are typical splash damage/immersion damage caused per round of exposure to the acid.

Explosives: Building an explosive from scratch is dangerous. If the Craft (chemical) check fails, the raw materials are wasted. If the check fails by 5 or more, the explosive compound detonates as it is being made, dealing half of its intended damage to the builder and anyone else in the burst radius. If the check succeeds, the final product is a solid material, about the size of a brick. An explosive compound does not include a fuse or detonator. Connecting a fuse or detonator requires a Demolitions check.

Type of Scratch-Built ExplosivePurchase DCReflex Save DCCraft DCTime
Improvised (1d6/5 feet)1610101 round
Simple (2d6/5 feet)12121510 min.
Moderate (4d6/10 feet)1612201 hr.
Complex (6d6/15 feet)2015253 hr.
Powerful (8d6/20 feet)25153012 hr.
Devastating (10d6/25 feet)30183524 hr.

1 The figures in parentheses are typical damage/burst radius for each type of explosive.

Scratch built explosives deal concussion damage.

Poisonous Substances: Solid poisons are usually ingested. Liquid poisons are most effective when injected directly into the bloodstream. Gaseous poisons must be inhaled to be effective. The table below summarizes the characteristics of various poisons.

Save DC: The Difficulty Class of the Fortitude save to negate the effects of the poison.

Initial Damage: The damage a character takes immediately upon failing his or her Fortitude save.

Secondary Damage: The damage a character takes after 1 minute of exposure to the poison if the character fails a second saving throw. Ability score damage is temporary, unless marked with an asterisk, in which case the damage is permanent ability drain. Unconsciousness lasts for 1d3 hours, and paralysis lasts 2d6 minutes.

Purchase DC: The DC for the Wealth check necessary to obtain the raw materials to craft the poison, or to purchase one bottle of solid or liquid poison or one high-pressure cylinder of gaseous poison. A bottle holds four doses, while a cylinder holds enough gas to fill a 10-foot-radius area.

Restriction: The restriction rating for the poison, if any, and the appropriate black market purchase DC modifier. Remember to apply this modifier to the purchase DC when making a Wealth check to acquire the poison on the black market.

Craft DC: The DC of the Craft check to create a quantity of the poison.

Check: The amount of time required for the Craft check. If the Craft check succeeds, the final product is a synthesized solid or liquid poison stored in a bottle (containing 4 doses) or a gas stored in a pressurized cylinder. When released, the gas is sufficient to fill a 10-foot-radius area and takes 1 round to fill the area.

Table: Poisons
PoisonTypeSave DCInitial DamageSecondary DamagePurchase DCRestrictionCraft DCTime
ArsenicIngested151d4 Str2d4 Con9Res (+2)244 hr.
AtropineInjury131d6 Dex1d6 Str3Res (+2)141 hr.
Belladonna (plant)Injury181d6 Str2d6 Str14Lic (+1)n/an/a
Blue vitriolInjury121d2 Con1d2 Con3Res (+2)91 hr.
Blue-ringed octopus venomInjury151d4 Con1d4 Con14Lic (+1)n/an/a
Chloral hydrateIngested181d6 DexUnconsciousness - 1d3 hours12Res (+2)288 hr.
Chloroform1Inhaled17Unconsciousness - 1d3 hours-9Res (+2)244 hr.
Curare (plant)Injury182d4 Dex2d4 Wis15Res (+2)n/an/a
CyanideInjury161d6 Con2d6 Con15Mil (+3)3115 hr.
CyanogenInhaled191d4 Dex2d4 Con12Mil (+3)288 hr.
DDTInhaled171d2 Str1d4 Str9Lic (+1)204 hr.
Knockout gasInhaled181d3 DexUnconsciousness - 1d3 hours12Res (+2)268 hr.
Lead arsenate (gas)Inhaled121d2 Str1d4 Con6Res (+2)172 hr.
Lead arsenate (solid)Ingested121d2 Con1d4 Con6Res (+2)182 hr.
Mustard gasInhaled171d4 Con2d4 Con12Mil (+3)268 hr.
Paris green (gas)Inhaled141d2 Con1d4 Con9Res (+2)204 hr.
Paris green (solid)Ingested141d4 Con1d4 Con9Res (+2)244 hr.
Puffer poison (fish)Injury131d6 StrParalysis - 2d6 minutes13Lic (+1)n/an/a
Rattlesnake venomInjury121d6 Con1d6 Con12Lic (+1)n/an/a
Sarin nerve gasInhaled181d4 Con2d4 Con15Illegal (+4)3015 hr.
Scorpion/tarantula venomInjury111d2 Str1d2 Str12Lic (+1)n/an/a
StrychnineInjury191d3 Dex2d4 Con9Res (+2)234 hr.
Tear gasInhaled15Nauseated 1d6 rounds- 9Res (+2)214 hr.
VX nerve gasInhaled221d6 Con2d6 Con21Illegal (+4)4248 hr.

1Chloroform gives off vapor that causes unconsciousness. Applying chloroform to an unwilling subject requires a successful grapple check and pin.

n/a: Certain poisons can't be made with the Craft skill. Instead, such a poison must be obtained by extracting it from the creature in question.

Special: A character without a chemical kit takes a -4 penalty on Craft (chemical) checks. A character with the Builder feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (chemical) checks.

Craft (electronic)

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: This skill allows a character to build electronic equipment from scratch, such as audio and video equipment, timers and listening devices, or radios and communication devices. When building an electronic device from scratch, the character describes the kind of device he or she wants to construct; then the Gamemaster decides whether the device is simple, moderate, complex, or advanced compared to current technology.

Type of Scratch-Built Electronics (Examples)Purchase DCCraft DCTime
Simple (timer or detonator)8151 hr.
Moderate (radio direction finder, electronic lock)122012 hr.
Complex (cell phone)162524 hr.
Advanced (computer)223060 hr.

Special: A character without an electrical tool kit takes a -4 penalty on Craft (electronic) checks. A character with the Builder feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (electronic) checks.

Craft (mechanical)

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: This skill allows a character to build mechanical devices from scratch, including engines and engine parts, weapons, armor, and other gadgets. When building a mechanical device from scratch, the character describes the kind of device he or she wants to construct; then the Gamemaster decides if the device is simple, moderate, complex, or advanced compared to current technology.

Type of Scratch-Built Mechanical Device (Examples)Purchase DCCraft DCTime
Simple (tripwire trap)5151 hr
Moderate (engine component, light armor)122012 hr.
Complex (automobile engine, 9mm autoloader handgun)162524 hr.
Advanced (jet engine)203060 hr.

Special: A character without a mechanical tool kit takes a -4 penalty on Craft (mechanical) checks. A character with the Builder feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (mechanical) checks.

Craft (pharmaceutical)

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: This skill allows a character to compound medicinal drugs to aid in recovery from treatable illnesses. A medicinal drug gives a +2 circumstance bonus on Fortitude saves made to resist the effects of a disease. The Craft (pharmaceutical) check is based on the severity of the disease to be countered as measured by the DC of the Fortitude save needed to resist it.

Disease Fortitude Save DCPurchase DCCraft DCTime
14 or lower5151 hr.
15-1810203 hr.
19-2215256 hr.
23 or higher203012 hr.

Special: A character without a pharmacist kit takes a -4 penalty on Craft (pharmaceutical) checks. A character with the Medical Expert feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (pharmaceutical) checks.

Craft (structural)

(Int)

Check: This skill allows a character to build wooden, concrete, or metal structures from scratch, including bookcases, desks, walls, houses, and so forth, and includes such handyman skills as plumbing, house painting, drywall, laying cement, and building cabinets.

Type of Scratch-Built Structure (Examples)Purchase DC Craft DCTime
Simple (bookcase, false wall)51512 hr.
Moderate (catapult, shed, house deck)102024 hr.
Complex (bunker, domed ceiling)152560 hr.
Advanced (house)2030600 hr.

When building a structure from scratch, the character describes the kind of structure he or she wants to construct; then the Gamemaster decides if the structure is simple, moderate, complex, or advanced in scope and difficulty.

Special: A character without a mechanical tool kit takes a -4 penalty on Craft (structural) checks. A character with the Builder feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (structural) checks.

Craft (visual art)

(Int)

Check: This skill allows a character to create paintings or drawings, take photographs, use a video camera, or in some other way create a work of visual art. When attempting to create a work of visual art, the character simply makes a Craft (visual art) check, the result of which determines the quality of the work. Unless the effort is particularly elaborate or the character must acquire an expensive piece of equipment, the basic components have a purchase DC of 5.

Skill Check ResultEffort Achieved
9 or lowerUntalented amateur
10-19Talented amateur
20-24Professional
25-30Expert
31 or higherMaster

Creating a work of visual art requires at least a full-round action, but usually takes an hour, a day, or more, depending on the scope of the project.

Special: A character with the Creative feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (visual art) checks.

Craft (writing)

(Int)

Check: This skill allows a character to create short stories, novels, scripts and screenplays, newspaper articles and columns, and similar works of writing. When creating a work of writing, the player simply makes a Craft (writing) check, the result of which determines the quality of the work. No Wealth check is necessary to use this Craft skill.

Skill Check ResultEffort Achieved
9 or lowerUntalented amateur
10-19Talented amateur
20-24Professional
25-30Expert
31 or higherMaster

Creating a work of writing requires at least 1 hour, but usually takes a day, a week, or more, depending on the scope of the project.

Special: A character with the Creative feat gets a +2 bonus on all Craft (writing) checks.

Decipher Script

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: A character can decipher writing in an ancient language or in code, or interpret the meaning of an incomplete text. The base DC is 20 for the simplest messages, 25 for standard codes, and 30 or higher for intricate or complex codes or exotic messages. Helpful texts or computer programs can provide a bonus (usually a +2 circumstance bonus) on the check, provided they are applicable to the script in question. If the check succeeds, the character understands the general content of a piece of writing, reading about one page of text or its equivalent in 1 minute. If the check fails, the GM makes a Wisdom check (DC 10) for the character to see if he or she avoids drawing a false conclusion about the text. (Success means that the character does not draw a false conclusion; failure means that the character does.) The GM secretly makes both the skill check and the Wisdom check so the character can't tell whether the conclusion drawn is accurate or not.

Try Again: No, unless conditions change or new information is uncovered.

Special: A character can take 10 when making a Decipher Script check, but can't take 20. A character with the Studious feat gets a +2 bonus on all Decipher Script checks.

Time: Decipher Script takes 1 minute or more, depending on the complexity of the code.

Demolitions

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: Setting a simple explosive to blow up at a certain spot doesn't require a check, but connecting and setting a detonator does. Also, placing an explosive for maximum effect against a structure calls for a check, as does disarming an explosive device.

Set Detonator: Most explosives require a detonator to go off. Connecting a detonator to an explosive requires a Demolitions check (DC 10). Failure means that the explosive fails to go off as planned. Failure by 10 or more means the explosive goes off as the detonator is being installed. A character can make an explosive difficult to disarm. To do so, the character chooses the disarm DC before making his or her check to set the detonator (it must be higher than 10). The character's DC to set the detonator is equal to the disarm DC.

Place Explosive Device: Carefully placing an explosive against a fixed structure (a stationary, unattended inanimate object) can maximize the damage dealt by exploiting vulnerabilities in the structure's construction. The GM makes the check (so that the character doesn't know exactly how well he or she has done). On a result of 15 or higher, the explosive deals double damage to the structure against which it is placed. On a result of 25 or higher, it deals triple damage to the structure. In all cases, it deals normal damage to all other targets within its burst radius.

Disarm Explosive Device: Disarming an explosive that has been set to go off requires a Demolitions check. The DC is usually 10, unless the person who set the detonator chose a higher disarm DC. If the character fails the check, he or she does not disarm the explosive. If the character fails by more than 5, the explosive goes off.

Special: A character can take 10 when using the Demolitions skill, but can't take 20. A character with the Cautious feat and at least 1 rank in this skill gets a +2 bonus on all Demolitions checks. A character without a demolitions kit takes a -4 penalty on Demolitions checks. Making an explosive requires the Craft (chemical) skill. See that skill description for details.

Time: Setting a detonator is usually a full-round action. Placing an explosive device takes 1 minute or more, depending on the scope of the job.

Disable Device

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: The GM makes the Disable Device check so that the character doesn't necessarily know whether he or she has succeeded.

Open Lock: A character can pick conventional locks, finesse combination locks, and bypass electronic locks. The character must have a lockpick set (for a mechanical lock) or an electrical tool kit (for an electronic lock). The DC depends on the quality of the lock.

Lock Type (Example)DC
Cheap (briefcase lock)20
Average (home deadbolt)25
High quality (business deadbolt)30
High security (branch bank vault)40
Ultra-high security (bank headquarters vault)50

Disable Security Device: A character can disable a security device, such as an electric fence, motion sensor, or security camera. The character must be able to reach the actual device. If the device is monitored, the fact that the character attempted to disable it will probably be noticed. When disabling a monitored device, the character can prevent his or her tampering from being noticed. Doing so requires 10 minutes and an electrical tool kit, and increases the DC of the check by +10.

Device Type (Example)DC
Cheap (home door alarm)20
Average (store security camera)25
High quality (art museum motion detector)30
High security (bank vault alarm)35
Ultrahigh security (motion detector at Area 51)40

Traps and Sabotage: Disabling (or rigging or jamming) a simple mechanical device has a DC of 10. More intricate and complex devices have higher DCs. The GM rolls the check. If the check succeeds, the character disables the device. If the check fails by 4 or less, the character has failed but can try again. If the character fails by 5 or more, something goes wrong. If it's a trap, the character springs it. If it's some sort of sabotage, the character thinks the device is disabled, but it still works normally.

A character can rig simple devices to work normally for a while and then fail some time later (usually after 1d4 rounds or minutes of use).

Try Again: Yes, though the character must be aware that he or she has failed in order to try again.

Special: A character can take 10 when making a Disable Device check. A character can take 20 to open a lock or to disable a security device, unless the character is trying to prevent his or her tampering from being noticed. Possessing the proper tools gives a character the best chance of succeeding on a Disable Device check. Opening a lock requires a lockpick set (for a mechanical lock) or an electrical tool kit (for an electronic lock). Opening a locked car calls for a car opening kit. Disabling a security device requires either a mechanical tool kit or an electronic toll kit, depending on the nature of the device. If the character does not have the appropriate tools, he or she takes a -4 penalty on your check. A lock release gun can open a mechanical lock of cheap or average quality without a Disable Device check.

A character with the Cautious feat and at least 1 rank in this skill gets a +2 bonus on all Disable Device checks.

Time: Disabling a simple mechanical device is a full-round action. Intricate or complex devices require 2d4 rounds.

Forgery

(Int)

Check: Forgery requires materials appropriate to the document being forged, and some time. To forge a document the character needs to have seen a similar document before. The complexity of the document, the character's degree of familiarity with it, and whether the character needs to reproduce the signature or handwriting of a specific individual, provide modifiers to the Forgery check, as shown below.

Check FactorModifierTime
Document Type
Simple (typed letter, business card)+010 min.
Moderate (letterhead, business form)-220 min.
Complex (stock certificate, driver's license)-41 hr.
Difficult (passport)-84 hr.
Extreme (military/law enforcement ID)-1624 hr.
Familiarity
Unfamiliar (seen once for less than a minute)-4
Fairly familiar (seen for several minutes)+0
Quite familiar (on hand, or studied at leisure)+4
Forger has produced other documents of same type+4
Document includes specific signature-4

Some documents require security or authorization codes, whether authentic ones or additional forgeries. The GM makes the character's check secretly so the character is not sure how good his or her forgery is.

The Forgery skill is also used to detect someone else's forgery. The result of the original Forgery check that created the document is opposed by a Forgery check by the person who examines the document to check its authenticity. If the examiner's check result is equal to or higher than the original Forgery check, the document is determined to be fraudulent. The examiner gains bonuses or penalties on his or her check as given in the table below.

Examiner's ConditionCheck Modifier
Type of document unknown to examiner-4
Type of document somewhat known to examiner-2
Type of document well known to examiner+0
Document is put through additional tests 1+4
Examiner only casually reviews the document 1-2

1 Cumulative with any of the first three conditions on the table. Apply this modifier along with one of the other three whenever appropriate.

A document that contradicts procedure, orders, or previous knowledge, or one that requires the examiner to relinquish a possession or a piece of information, can increase the examiner's suspicion (and thus create favorable circumstances for the examiner's opposed Forgery check).

Try Again: No, since the forger isn't sure of the quality of the original forgery.

Special: To forge documents and detect forgeries, one must be able to read and write the language in question. (The skill is language-dependent.) A character can take 10 when making a Forgery check, but can't take 20.

A character with the Meticulous feat gets a +2 bonus on all Forgery checks.

A character without a forgery kit takes a -4 penalty on Forgery checks.

Time: Forging a short, simple document takes about 1 minute. Longer or more complex documents take 1d4 minutes per page or longer.

Investigate

(Int; Trained Only)

Try Again: A character generally uses Search to discover clues and Investigate to analyze them. If the character has access to a crime lab, the character uses the Investigate skill to collect and prepare samples for the lab. The result of the Investigate check provides bonuses or penalties to the lab workers.

Analyze Clue: The character can make an Investigate check to apply forensics knowledge to a clue. This function of the Investigate skill does not give the character clues where none existed before. It simply allows the character to extract extra information from a clue he or she has found. The base DC to analyze a clue is 15. It is modified by the time that has elapsed since the clue was left, and whether or not the scene was disturbed.

CircumstancesDC Modifier
Every day since event (max modifier +10)+2
Scene is outdoors+5
Scene slightly disturbed+2
Scene moderately disturbed+4
Scene extremely disturbed+6

Collect Evidence: The character can collect and prepare evidentiary material for a lab. This use of the Investigate skill requires an evidence kit. To collect a piece of evidence, make an Investigate check (DC 15). If the character succeeds, the evidence is usable by a crime lab. If the character fails, a crime lab analysis can be done, but the lab takes a -5 penalty on any necessary check. If the character fails by 5 or more, the lab analysis simply cannot be done. On the other hand, if the character succeeds by 10 or more, the lab gains a +2 circumstance bonus on its checks to analyze the material. This function of the Investigate skill does not provide the character with evidentiary items. It simply allows the character to collect items he or she has found in a manner that best aids in their analysis later, at a crime lab.

Special: Generally, analyzing a clue again doesn't add new insight unless another clue is introduced. Evidence collected cannot be recollected, unless there is more of it to take.

Time: A character can take 10 when making an Investigate check, but cannot take 20. Collecting evidence requires an evidence kit. If the character does not have the appropriate kit, the character takes a -4 penalty on his or her check.

A character with the Attentive feat and at least 1 rank in this skill gets a +2 bonus on all Investigate checks.

Knowledge

(Int; Trained Only)

This skill encompasses several categories, each of them treated as a separate skill. These categories are identified and defined below. The number of Knowledge categories is kept purposely finite. When trying to determine what Knowledge skill a particular question or field of expertise falls under, use a broad interpretation of the existing categories. Do not arbitrarily make up new categories.

Check: A character makes a Knowledge check to see if the character knows something. The DC for answering a question within the character's field of study is 10 for easy questions, 15 for basic questions, and 20 to 30 for tough questions.

Appraising the value of an object is one sort of task that can be performed using Knowledge. The DC depends on how common or obscure the object is. On a success, the character accurately identifies the object's purchase DC. If the character fails, he or she thinks it has a purchase DC 1d2 higher or lower (determine randomly) than its actual value. If the character fails by 5 or more, he or she thinks it has a purchase DC 1d4+2 higher or lower than its actual value. The GM may make the Knowledge roll for the character, so he or she doesn't know whether the appraisal is accurate or not.

The fourteen Knowledge categories, and the topics each one encompasses, are as follows.

Try Again: No. The check represents what a character knows, and thinking about a topic a second time doesn't let the character know something he or she never knew in the first place.

Special: An untrained Knowledge check is simply an Intelligence check. Without actual training, a character only knows common knowledge about a given subject. A character can take 10 when making a Knowledge check, but can't take 20.

A character with the Educated feat gets a +2 bonus on any two types of Knowledge checks. The GM may decide that having 5 or more ranks in a specific Knowledge skill provides a character with a +2 synergy bonus when making a related skill check.

Time: A Knowledge check can be a reaction, but otherwise requires a full-round action.

Navigate

(Int)

Check: Make a Navigate check when a character is trying to find his or her way to a distant location without directions or other specific guidance. Generally, a character does not need to make a check to find a local street or other common urban site, or to follow an accurate map. However, the character might make a check to wend his or her way through a dense forest or a labyrinth of underground storm drains. For movement over a great distance, make a Navigate check. The DC depends on the length of the trip. If the character succeeds, he or she moves via the best reasonable course toward his or her goal. If the character fails, he or she still reaches the goal, but it takes the character twice as long (the character loses time backtracking and correcting his or her path). If the character fails by more than 5, the or she travels the expected time, but only gets halfway to his or her destination, at which point the character becomes lost. A character may make a second Navigate check (DC 20) to regain his or her path. If the character succeeds, he or she continues on to his or her destination; the total time for the trip is twice the normal time. If the character fails, he or she loses half a day before the character can try again. The character keeps trying until he or she succeeds, losing half a day for each failure.

Length of TripDC
Short (a few hours)20
Moderate (a day or two)22
Long (up to a week)25
Extreme (more than a week)28

When faced with multiple choices, such as at a branch in a tunnel, a character can make a Navigate check (DC 20) to intuit the choice that takes the character toward a known destination. If unsuccessful, the character chooses the wrong path, but at the next juncture, with a successful check, the character realizes his or her mistake. A character cannot use this function of Navigate to find a path to a site if the character has no idea where the site is located. The GM may choose to make the Navigate check for the character in secret, so he or she doesn't know from the result whether the character is following the right or wrong path.

A character can use Navigate to determine his or her position on earth without the use of any high-tech equipment by checking the constellations or other natural landmarks. The character must have a clear view of the night sky to make this check. The DC is 15.

Special: A character can take 10 when making a Navigate check. A character can take 20 only when determining his or her location, not when traveling.

A character with the Guide feat gets a +2 bonus on all Navigate checks.

Time: A Navigate check is a full-round action.

Repair

(Int; Trained Only)

Check: Most Repair checks are made to fix complex electronic or mechanical devices. The DC is set by the GM. In general, simple repairs have a DC of 10 to 15 and require no more than a few minutes to accomplish. More complex repair work has a DC of 20 or higher and can require an hour or more to complete. Making repairs also involves a monetary cost when spare parts or new components are needed, represented by a Wealth check. If the GM decides this isn't necessary for the type of repair the character is attempting, then no Wealth check is needed.

Repair Task (Example)Purchase DCRepair DCTime
Simple (tool, simple weapon)4101 min.
Moderate (mechanical or electronic component)71510 min.
Complex (mechanical or electronic device)10201 hr.
Advanced (cutting-edge mechanical or electronic device)132510 hr.

Jury-Rig: A character can choose to attempt jury-rigged, or temporary, repairs. Doing this reduces the purchase DC by 3 and the Repair check DC by 5, and allows the character to make the checks in as little as a full-round action. However, a jury-rigged repair can only fix a single problem with a check, and the temporary repair only lasts until the end of the current scene or encounter. The jury-rigged object must be fully repaired thereafter. A character can also use jury-rig to hot-wire a car or jump-start an engine or electronic device. The DC for this is at least 15, and it can be higher depending on the presence of security devices. The jury-rig application of the Repair skill can be used untrained.

Try Again: Yes, though in some specific cases, the GM may decide that a failed Repair check has negative ramifications that prevent repeated checks.

Special: A character can take 10 or take 20 on a Repair check. When making a Repair check to accomplish a jury-rig repair, a character can't take 20. Repair requires an electrical tool kit, a mechanical tool kit, or a multipurpose tool, depending on the task. If the character do not have the appropriate tools, he or she takes a -4 penalty on the check. Craft (mechanical) or Craft (electronic) can provide a +2 synergy bonus on Repair checks made for mechanical or electronic devices (see Skill Synergy).

A character with the Gearhead feat and at least 1 rank in this skill gets a +2 bonus on all Repair checks.

Time: See the table for guidelines. A character can make a jury-rig repair as a full-round action, but the work only lasts until the end of the current encounter.

Research

(Int)

Check: Researching a topic takes time, skill, and some luck. The GM determines how obscure a particular topic is (the more obscure, the higher the DC) and what kind of information might be available depending on where the character is conducting his or her research. Information ranges from general to protected. Given enough time (usually 1d4 hours) and a successful skill check, the character gets a general idea about a given topic. This assumes that no obvious reasons exist why such information would be unavailable, and that the character has a way to acquire restricted or protected information. The higher the check result, the better and more complete the information. If the character wants to discover a specific fact, date, map, or similar bit of information, add +5 to +15 to the DC.

Try Again: Yes.

Special: A character can take 10 or take 20 on a Research check.

A character with the Studious feat gets a +2 bonus on all Research checks. Computer Use can provide a +2 synergy bonus on a Research check when searching computer records for data (see Skill Synergy).

Time: A Research check takes 1d4 hours.

Search

(Int)

Check: The character generally must be within 10 feet of the object or surface to be examined. A character can examine up to a 5-foot-by-5-foot area or a volume of goods 5 feet on a side with a single check. A Search check can turn up individual footprints, but does not allow a character to follow tracks or tell the character which direction the creature or creatures went or came from.

DCTask
10Ransack an area to find a certain object.
20Notice a typical secret compartment, a simple trap, or an obscure clue.
25+Find a complex or well-hidden secret compartment or trap; notice an extremely obscure clue.

Special: A character can take 10 or take 20 when making a Search check.

A character with the Meticulous feat gets a +2 bonus on all Search checks.

Time: A Search check is a full-round action.