A (insertage term here) is an action or reaction that a character undertakes. Some of these are mundane, or have mundane roots, and may in fact be used by those not awakened. Some of them, however, have prerequisites that mundanes cannot achieve (such as Aspects), or costs that they normally cannot pay, such as an unusually high Aura or Animus requirement. In the latter case, they may still purchase these, as enhancements can bring costs down to a reasonable level. Thus, at an equivalent amount of experience, the awakened should still be cautious of mundanes - they may not have a large bag of tricks without technology, but what they know how to do, they do effortlessly.
The name of the maneuver. Usually straightforward and descriptive.
Describes how the move gets used.
- Active: This is an action, meaning, a singular thing you perform on your own turn. You normally only get one action at a time although some celerity-type abilities will allow for say, effective dual-wielding, even for mundanes. These have a 'speed' score, reflecting the number of action points it takes to use them. Enhancements may not normally buy these down to zero.
- Aspect: The ability is an Aspect. It is effectively permanent, and its costs are effectively sacrifices - if it 'costs' a wound level, your character will have one less wound level for the rest of her career. No character may have more aspects than her Anima rank.
- Permanent: Like aspects, except there is no limit to the number purchased, and they are generally less costly.
- Reactive: A move that occurs in response to some trigger, or otherwise takes no time at all to activate. Though their effective speed is zero, some of these have action point costs. If you have an action point deficit that needs to be paid, you cannot activate further abilities that have an action point cost.
- Supplemental: An ability that enhances an action or reaction. Like reactives, supplementals do not have a speed, but may have an AP cost that needs to be recovered from before they can be used again.
What it takes to perform the ability. Permanent talents with a cost mean that they require a permanent sacrifice of some sort, and can have odd costs, such as 'one Anima', which would reflect an ability of exceptional power.
- a: Animus drive. Increases your animus rating by the listed amount. You can always pay this cost, but if you fail your subsequent Anima roll, the result can be painful. For mundanes, this is almost always lethal. Such is the price for a taste of Power.
- ap: Action point cost, for certain reactive and supplemental abilities. Active abilities that have such a cost have it in addition to their speed requirement.
- f: Focus cost. Almost all abilities have a cost of one or more focus, which reflects the mental capacity it takes to perform an action.
- w: A 'w', 'wd', or 'wl' refers to a cost in wounds (as in points), wound dice (so 6wd would mean six dice of wounds), and wound levels. 4wl, for example, means you take four wound levels to activate the ability. You cannot sacrifice more wound levels than you currently have.
Cost reductions are cumulative. So, if an ability begins with an animus drive or wound point cost of 4, it costs 1 xp to reduce it to 3, another 2 xp to reduce it to 2, another 3 to reduce it to 1, and 4 to reduce it to zero, for a total of 10 xp to make it 'free' for that aspect of its cost.
- Animus: 1xp, cumulative, per cost reduction.
- Action Points: 10xp, cumulative, per cost reduction.
- Focus: 10xp, cumulative, per cost reduction. Outside of a combination, the minimum focus cost for an ability is 1, even if it has been reduced to zero.
- Wounds: 1xp, cumulative for wounds, 15xp, cumulative for dice, 20xp, cumulative for wound levels.
The minimum Aura level required to use the ability. The Aura level requirement may be brought down once, for a cost of 100 xp.
The type of energy the ability uses.
- Kinetic energy. To be specific, forms of energy that involve a transfer of momentum. Bashing, concussive, piercing, and shearing are the typical forms. Certain types are more effective in certain situations than others.
- Thermal energy. Measured as vibrational energy of various sorts or a lack thereof. Electical, freezing, heat, and sonic are the usual suspects.
Energy types may sometimes be enhanced into similar types.
The duration of the ability. In addition to raw duration expressed in units of time, the following is most common:
- Aura: The effect of the ability lasts until the user's Aura level drops below the amount specified in Aura. Aura 0 means that the ability may be activated and left on indefinitely, until they sleep or are otherwise left unconscious. While active, the cost of the ability is 'committed', and cannot be regained in any manner. For example, if something costs a wound level to activate, it cannot be healed until the ability is let down.
- Indefinite: As 'aura 0', except that it can be left active even while unconscious, so long as the cost is committed.
- Instant: As described, the effect lasts only a moment, for a single dieroll or other action.
Duration with raw values (not using the above keywords) may be enhanced for a cost.