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Athletics Dodge (•) Edit

Prerequisites: Dexterity •• and Athletics •

Whenever your character performs a dodge (see “Dodge”, the World of Darkness Rulebook, page 156) you can add his Athletics Skill dots to his Defense instead of doubling his Defense. He essentially draws on his knowledge of how his body moves to parry and evade attacks rather than rely on his raw ability alone.
Athletics Dodge applies against incoming Brawl- and Weaponry-based attacks, against thrown-weapon attacks, and against fi rearms attacks made within close-combat range. Your character can move up to his Speed and perform an Athletics Dodge maneuver in a turn. A character can possess this Merit and also the Brawling Dodge and Weaponry Dodge Merits, but only one can be used per turn.


Brawling Dodge (•) Edit

Prerequisite: Strength •• and Brawl •

Whenever your character performs a dodge, you can choose to add his Brawl Skill dots to his Defense instead of doubling his Defense. He essentially draws on his training in blocking and evading attacks rather than relying on his raw ability alone. While this might provide little benefit to a brawling novice, it can give the advanced fighter an edge.

Brawling Dodge applies against incoming Brawl- and Weaponry-based attacks, against thrown-weapon attacks, and against Firearms attacks made within close-combat range. Your character can move up to his Speed and perform a Brawling Dodge maneuver in a turn. A character can possess both the Brawling Dodge and Weaponry Dodge Merits, but only one can be used per turn.


Direction Sense (•) Edit

Your character has an innate sense of direction that instinctively allows him to remain oriented. He can enter unfamiliar territory and always retrace his steps back to his starting point, and can orient himself to any of the compass points (i.e., face north, face south) without references.


Disarm (••)Edit

Prerequisite: Dexterity ••• and Weaponry ••

Your character has refined his Weaponry Skill to the extent that he can use a weapon to disarm opponents in close combat. Effect: When making a normal attack, compare your successes to the opponent's Dexterity. If you get a number of successes equal to or greater than the opponent's Dexterity, you can choose to have your character disarm him instead of doing damage.


Fast Reflexes (• or ••) Edit

Prerequisites: Dexterity •••

Your character's mix of sharp reflexes and steady nerves helps him get the drop on adversaries. Effect: +1 Initiative per dot.


Fighting Finesse (••) Edit

Prerequisite: Dexterity ••• and Weaponry ••

Your character prefers to fight with a chosen weapon in a manner that favors agility over power. With that one weapon (a rapier or katana, for example), you may substitute your character's Dexterity for Strength when making attack rolls. This Merit may be purchased multiple times to gain agility with more weapons, one for each purchase.


Fleet of Foot (• to •••) Edit

Prerequisites: Strength ••

Regardless of your character's physical build, he can run quickly when he chooses to. Effect: +1 Speed per dot


Fresh Start (• to •••) Edit

Prerequisites: Fast Reflexes ••

Your character dedicates an action to altering his standing in the Initiative order in the following turn and for all subsequent turns, choosing to insert himself at a new point in the roster, even if it means going first when he went last before. For example, if your Initiative roll resulted in a 9, but a rival whom your character wanted to waylay got a 12, your character can forfeit an action in turn one to get a fresh start and then act before that rival at 13 in turn two and afterward. Drawback:A character must take an action to change his Initiative ranking in subsequent turns. He can do nothing else in that action except move up to his Speed.


Gunslinger (•••) Edit

Prerequisites: Dexterity ••• and Firearms •••

Your character's capability and experience with firearms is such that he can accurately fire two pistols at the same time. Your character still suffers the -2 offhand penalty for shooting with his secondary hand (unless he also possesses the Ambidextrous Merit, above), but he can shoot both pistols as a single action during a turn. The second attack is also at a -1 penalty. Your character may shoot at two different targets if he wishes, but the amount of concentration required negates his Defense for the turn.

Drawback: The Merit can be used with pistols only. Your character cannot use his Defense against any attack in the same turn in which he intends to use this Merit on two separate targets in the same turn. If he uses Defense against attacks that occur earlier in the Initiative roster, before he can perform this maneuver, he cannot perform the maneuver this turn. He is too busy bobbing and weaving out of the way of attacks.


Hands of a Killer (•) Edit

Prerequisite: Dexterity •••, Weaponry ••

Your character has a talent for using mundane objects to inflict pain; in his hands, almost anything with the right heft or edge is an effective killing tool. The character ignores the standard -1 penalty for improvised weapons. This doesn’t negate other limitations inherent to certain objects, like a damage maximum or a propensity to break in combat. Drawback: The character can never take a specialty relating to the use of a melee weapon, ranged weapon or firearm. While the character is capable of using actual, designed weapons, they don’t interest him enough to become especially proficient in them.

Iron Stamina (• to •••) Edit

Prerequisites: Stamina ••• and Resolve •••


Your character can push his body well past the limits of physical endurance when he has to, pressing on in the face of mounting exhaustion or pain. Perhaps he trained himself to go without sleep for days at a time in order to get through college, or a lifetime of sports has taught your character how to play through the pain no matter how bad it gets.

Each dot eliminates a negative modifier (on a one-for-one basis) when resisting the effects of fatigue or injury. The Merit also counteracts the effects of wound penalties. So, if all of your character's Health boxes are filled (which normally imposes a -3 penalty to his actions) and he has Iron Stamina •, those penalties are reduced to -2. This Merit cannot be used to gain positive modifiers for actions, only to cancel out negative ones.

Drawback: When your character does finally rest, he sleeps like the dead. After staying awake for an extended period, your character is extremely difficult to wake until he's slept for a minimum of 12 hours, regardless of the situation.


Iron Stomach (••) Edit

Prerequisites: Stamina ••

Your character can eat almost anything, under almost any conditions. Greasy bacon and runny eggs on a raging hangover? No problem. The green meat in the fridge? No problem. Milk two weeks past its expiration date? No problem. He could be dropped in the middle of the forest and could live off bugs and roots as long as necessary in order to survive - and with no ill effects. Add two dice to appropriate Survival rolls. Add three to Stamina to resist deprivation (see p. 175).


Natural Immunity (••) Edit

Prerequisites: Stamina ••

His immune system is exceptionally effective at resisting infections, viruses and bacteria. Your character can probably count on one hand the number of times he's been seriously ill. Your character gains a +2 modifier on Stamina rolls to resist infection, sickness and disease.


Quick Draw (•) Edit

Prerequisites: Dexterity •••

Your character can draw a pistol and fire or pull a melee weapon and attack without penalty as a single action in a turn. If a weapon is hidden on your character's person (under a coat or in a purse), it can be drawn and used in the same turn without the normal loss of Defense. A separate Quick Draw Merit must be acquired for use with firearms and melee weapons.


Quick Healer (••••) Edit

Prerequisites: Stamina •••

Your character's healing abilities are remarkable, allowing him to bounce back quickly from injuries that would leave most people bedridden for months. Your character recovers from injuries in half the time that others do. One point of bashing damage is healed in eight minutes. One point of lethal damage is healed in one day. One point of aggravated damage is healed in four days.


Strong Back (•) Edit

Prerequisites: Strength ••

She can lift and carry much more weight than her build and body type suggests. Your character gains a +1 modifier to actions involving lifting or carrying heavy weights.


Strong Lungs (•••) Edit

Prerequisites: Athletics •••

Your character is practiced at holding his breath for long periods of time. He might be a pearl diver or escape artist, capable of staying underwater without aid for longer than most people believe is possible. When determining how long your character can hold his breath, add two to Stamina when referencing the Holding Breath chart on p. 49. For example, if your character's Stamina is 2, he can hold his breath for four minutes before you need to make a roll.


Stunt Driver (•••) Edit

Prerequisites: Dexterity •••

Your character can drive a vehicle and perform an unrelated action (e.g., fire a gun, punch another passenger) in the same turn. Drive rolls may still be necessary for dangerous maneuvers or situations.


Tolerance for Biology (•) Edit

Prerequisite: Resolve, Stamina or Composure ••


Some people see blood and pass out. Some people hear another person throwing up and get queasy. Your character can watch medicinal maggots being massaged into open, blackened wounds and feel nothing except a bit of curiosity. He never feels nauseated due to unpleasant things he sees in a medical setting, and receives a +2 bonus to any roll to keep composed when offered scenes of violence or carnage, or when exposed to horrific smells.


Toxin Resistance (••) Edit

Prerequisites: Stamina •••

His body is capable of withstanding high levels of chemicals without suffering any ill effects. He's probably never had a case of food poisoning, much less a hangover. Your character gains a +2 modifier to Stamina rolls to resist the effects of drugs, poisons and toxins.

Drawbacks: Your character's body can't tell the difference between recreational toxins and intentional ones. It's very difficult for him to become intoxicated, whether from alcohol, nicotine or other drugs. Also, painkillers and anesthetics are only half as effective as normal.


Weaponry Dodge (•) Edit

Prerequisites: Strength •• and Weaponry •

Whenever your character performs a dodge, you can choose to add his Weaponry Skill dots to his Defense instead of doubling his Defense. He essentially draws on his training in parrying and evading attacks rather than relying on his raw ability alone. While this might provide little benefit to a fencing novice, it can give the advanced fighter an edge. Weaponry Dodge applies against incoming Brawl- and Weaponry-based attacks, against thrown-weapon attacks, and against Firearms attacks made within close-combat range. Your character can move up to his Speed and perform a Weaponry Dodge maneuver in a turn. A character can possess both the Brawling Dodge and Weaponry Dodge Merits, but only one can be used per turn.


Weaponry Monomaniac (••) Edit

Prerequisite: Weaponry •, and a specialty in the specific weapon

Some slashers take great comfort in one weapon. Whether a woman gains power from her dead husband’s straight-razor or a Legend possesses a fire ax that he believes speaks to him, the reliance on one specific weapon is this slasher’s defining trait. When using one specific weapon — a custom glove with razors in the fingertips, or a perfectly-balanced sniper rifle — the slasher’s roll gains the 8-Again quality.
Drawback: The slasher cannot voluntarily get rid of his weapon. Even if the cops are after him and it’s dripping with the blood of a dead cheerleader, he will take it with him. If circumstances outside his control separate him from his weapon, he gains a derangement that remains until he is reunited with his weapon.