Character Mechanics

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Character Mechanics
Character Power and How to Wield It
On Bleach Gotei, a system of numerical representation is used to determine characters’ comparative levels of power. This system is split into Stats, a quantitative representation; and Skills, a qualitative representation. Information on how these work, interact with one another and interact with those of other characters can be found here.

Table of Contents
Powers and Releases
Character Classes
Actions, Checks, and Comparison Tiers
Types of Checks

What are Stats?
Stats are the quantitative representation of character power on Bleach Gotei and serve as the foundation upon which all character power is built. They show how strong, durable, fast or spiritually potent a character is on a numerical scale and the combined total of all stats is usually a good indicator of roughly how powerful a character is. This total, termed on Bleach Gotei as Reiatsu, is split into four individual stats: Strength, Defense, Speed and Spirit.

Reiatsu is not technically a stat so much as it is an aggregate of all stats—the total spiritual pressure a character exerts upon the world around them. The higher this number, generally the more powerful the character.

Strength is a representation of a character’s physical power: how potent their muscles are when performing strenuous activities such as punching or swinging a sword. Strength is offensive in nature and most commonly governs melee attacks.

Defense is a representation of a character’s durability: how resistant their body is to damage. Defense is defensive in nature and is also passive. Defense does not come into play until a character has already been hit, at which point it reduces raw damage taken.

Speed is a representation of a character’s maneuverability: how well they are able to evade incoming blows and navigate the battlefield. Speed is defensive in nature and governs things like the act of dodging attacks or chasing down a target.

Spirit is a representation of a character’s spiritual potency: how powerful their magic or other nonphysical attacks might be. Spirit is offensive in nature and most commonly governs ranged attacks.

Common misconceptions include Defense being used to block, or that Speed governs the speed of one’s attacks. Defense is a measure of how tough a character’s body is, not how well they block—blocking is done with either Strength or Spirit. Speed is a measure of how quickly they can move from point A to point B, not how fast they can swing a sword or fire an energy beam. Other common misconceptions are that Spirit, due to its nebulous nature, can do “everything”, or that Strength is limited to melee attacks. Neither of these is true—Spirit (much like Strength) cannot be used as a substitute for other stats, and Strength can just as easily be used to attack from range using e.g. a javelin or other physical projectile.

Stat Caps
Stat caps exist in order to prevent rampant overspecialization in a character and impose both upper and lower limits on how Reiatsu may be allocated across the four stats.

The lowest any one stat can be is 10% of a character’s Reiatsu (rounded up to the nearest integer). For example, this means that if a character has 150 Reiatsu, they cannot have any stat lower than 15. If they have 151 Reiatsu, they cannot have any stat lower than 16.

The highest any one stat can be is limited by what is termed the Base Stat Cap. The Base Stat Cap grows by 10 for every 25 Reiatsu a character has. For example, this means that at 100 Reiatsu, a character cannot have any one stat above 40. At 150 Reiatsu, they cannot have any one stat above 60, and so on.

What are Skills?
Skills are the qualitative representation of character power on Bleach Gotei and serve as a natural extension to stats. They show a character’s understanding of how to translate the power in their muscles or the spiritual potency within them into action and have several ranks which govern how well this is achieved. A popular way to phrase it is that stats represent raw power, and skills are the lens through which this power is focused. A character may be very strong physically, but without the knowledge of how to put that strength to good use, they will often find themselves at the mercy of those who are better trained in the martial arts.

There are two distinct types of skill on Bleach Gotei: Major and Minor. Skills that are directly compared to other skills in order to determine an outcome are classified as major, whereas skills that directly modify those outcomes without first comparing to other skills are classified as minor. Direct combat skills such as Weapon Proficiency or Kidō, both major skills, are checked against other skills when used to attack or defend, but skills such as Blut or Regeneration, both minor skills, simply act, independent of other factors.

Skill Ranks
Major skills have six ranks and minor skills have three ranks. These ranks are as follows:

Major Skills
Rank 0: None
Rank 1: Beginner
Rank 2: Novice
Rank 3: Journeyman
Rank 4: Expert
Rank 5: Master
Rank 6: Grandmaster

Minor Skills
Rank 0: None
Rank 1: Novice
Rank 2: Proficient
Rank 3: Master

Major skill ranks 5 and 6—as well as minor skill rank 3—are referred to as Masteries on Bleach Gotei and are not available freely; they must be approved beforehand.

Skill Selection
Character race plays a large role in determining which skills a character is eligible to take. A base selection of five major skills termed Universal Skills are available to all characters on Bleach Gotei, and while the specific flavor of how a particular race or character wields that skill may differ, the core functionality of the skills remain the same for all. In addition to the Universal Skills, each race has several unique Racial Skills, both major and minor, which only characters of that race may take. Finally, a wide selection of Neutral Skills (the majority of which are minor) available to all races exist in order to allow characters to fill potential gaps in their character’s skill loadout and deepen the customization options. The use of custom skills is not permitted on Bleach Gotei, though neutral skills may be reflavored freely (so long as their functionality remains the same) to better suit characters who wish to use them.

Each character on Bleach Gotei is allowed to freely take any combination of the Universal skills but is limited to a total of two racial or neutral skills. At Prestige, access is granted to the Prestige Skill and an additional racial or neutral skill for a total of three.

A comprehensive list of Skills can be found here.

Powers and Releases
All characters on Bleach Gotei possess unique abilities that define not only who they are but often how they approach the world. These abilities are divided into several stages, which on Bleach Gotei are referred to as Releases.

First Release is the simplest, most rudimentary application of a character’s ability, and the only one all characters have the option to start with. The First Releases include a Shinigami’s Shikai, an Arrancar’s Hollow Power, and a Quincy’s signature ability.
Second Release symbolizes a heightened state of self-awareness, what some would call the ultimate expression of a character’s ability. Only those who work very hard will achieve their Second Release. Second Releases include a Shinigami’s Bankai, an Arrancar’s Resurrección, and a Quincy’s refined signature ability.
Third Release is a truly groundbreaking step in any character’s development, earned by shattering the very mold that defines the character’s race itself. On Bleach Gotei, Third Release is linked to Prestige, and includes a Shinigami’s Evolved Zanpakutō, a Vaizard’s Hollow Mask, an Arrancar’s Segunda Etapa, and a Quincy’s Vollständig.

The time it takes to activate a release is determined by that release’s duration as outlined in the corresponding racial skill. Any release with a limited duration takes a single action to release, whereas any release with an indefinite duration takes no action to release and may, if the character so chooses, be designated as a “constant-release” type (for more information on actions, see below). For example, a Shinigami releasing Shikai with Novice Zanpakutō Resonance will require an action, whereas a Shinigami with Expert Zanpakutō Resonance will require no action and may, if they desire, choose to keep the release constantly active.

Release Bonuses
When a character uses releases as earth-shatteringly powerful as Bankai or Segunda Etapa, they are tapping into locked reserves of power within their soul. On Bleach Gotei, this is represented by a Release Bonus, an increased Reiatsu level that is applied as long as the release is active, capable of breaking past the Base Stat Cap and Reiatsu Limit.

Though there are some racial variations, the rule of thumb is as follows:
First Release grants no release bonus.
Second Release grants a release bonus of +40 Reiatsu.
Third Release grants a release bonus of +40 Reiatsu which can be increased to +60 through the Prestige skill.

This means that there is a potential total for any character to have a full +100 Reiatsu when all their releases are active at the same time (such as a Vaizard using their Bankai and Hollow Mask simultaneously).

How this bonus Reiatsu is assigned to a character’s stats is up to the player, though some restrictions apply:
The spread of the release bonuses cannot be changed mid-thread.
The maximum amount of release bonus Reiatsu that can be assigned to a single stat is 50. If the character is capable of achieving a concurrent release bonus of +100 Reiatsu or more, this number is raised to 60.

Race-specific implementations of releases and their release bonuses can be found on their respective racial pages.

Each stage of release is linked to a specific power, the nature of which is up to the player to design. As Powers are the only mechanical aspect of Bleach Gotei that is open for customization, it is often here a character will set itself apart from others most radically.

Powers can take all kinds of forms; from something as simple as shooting fireballs to something far more complex, such as entering shared dreams or phasing through physical matter on a whim. Designing a power’s mechanical effect is straightforward: players are free to utilize all aspects of Bleach Gotei’s systems in order to tailor something to their liking and staff members will aid in making sure that their powers remain balanced. There are more examples of interesting powers on Bleach Gotei than can be listed here, but some helpful tips when designing powers are as follows:

Simple powers with applications outside of combat make for better storytelling! A convoluted power with multiple, highly specific and niche uses in mainly combat scenarios is far less interesting than a power that has a single effect that can be used creatively in a myriad of ways both in and out of combat.

Powers, like releases, often scale in complexity and scope! A Shinigami’s Shikai, for example, often serves as a basis, either thematically or mechanically, for their Bankai. As a higher level of release is reached, the level of what is acceptable for a power to achieve also rises. For the vast majority of characters, the Prestige power will be the ultimate expression of a character’s might. Build up to it.

Limitations and drawbacks are a good way to balance a power! Powers, like characters, often benefit from having flaws. A power will be far easier to have approved (and will be far more interesting to include in a narrative) if it contains a crippling flaw or drawback to its use.

Don’t reinvent the wheel! Use the existing systems when designing a power. Stat and skill checks, comparison tiers, wound ranks and other mechanical ins and outs can all be manipulated by some degree. A power doesn’t need to fundamentally change the world—sometimes simply shooting fireballs works.

Think of the bigger picture! A power is only one part of many that comprise a character. Give thought to how the character and powers reflect on each other, and don’t forget that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Multiple powers can work in unison and concessions in one may make it easier to motivate taking greater liberties with another.

Character Classes
Class Progression
On Bleach Gotei we seek to encourage hard work and a high standard of writing and for this reason, the class system exists. A character’s class is closely linked not only to what some would consider the evolution of a character but also the skill with which the player tells that character’s story. The classes are as follows:

Normal (tier 1) marks the starting point of every character on Bleach Gotei. It is here that all characters begin their story.

Prestige (tier 2) is the result of a fundamental change in a character, typically in the form of intense development delivered by solid writing and storytelling. Prestige characters are characters that have left lasting impressions on the world and characters of Bleach Gotei, and are very often those in positions of great in-character status. Prestige comes in a variety of flavors, prominent among them being Vasto Lorde for Hollows and Vaizard for Shinigami.

Note! Character class has no bearing on eligibility for in-character rank or position.

Reiatsu Limits
Because character class is closely tied to the idea of a character evolving, characters in higher classes enjoy the benefit of higher potential Reiatsu. This is represented by Reiatsu Limits, a system of maximum Reiatsu levels for each tier of character. The maximums are as follows:

Tier 1: 300 Reiatsu
Tier 2: 400 Reiatsu

Actions, Checks and Comparison Tiers
Given Bleach Gotei’s format as an occasionally combative play-by-post RP, Actions exist as a way to preserve continuity and fairness when fighting. “Actions” is a catchall term for anything related specifically to combat, be it attacking, responding to an attack, healing, moving significant distances, or releasing—that is to say, anything that directly influences the flow of combat itself. As such, speaking or thinking does not require an action but can safely be inferred takes place either during or in the moments between actions.

Each player is allotted two actions per post, where the first action takes place at roughly the same time as the preceding player’s second action. This allows a flexible back-and-forth interaction of attacking and defending and keeps the combat moving at a steady pace, ensuring no player can perform an unrealistic amount of actions in their allotted time.

Some special situations apply to the action system: whoever initiates combat is allotted only a single action to start things off (what they use this action for is entirely up to them, however), and if an opponent’s second action does not require a response (such as choosing to release instead of attack) or simply not responded to, players are unable to use both their actions to launch separate attacks.

Other than these special situations, there are few restrictions. The choice of blocking, dodging, counter-attacking or even doing nothing in response to an attack is entirely up to the player (though the latter would of course result in an unmitigated wound being inflicted), depending on how they want to approach their situation, which allows for a variety of tactical options. Flexibility is of course available to those who can reach agreements with their thread partners. If you want to squeeze an additional action or two into your post, ask! If nobody in the thread has any objections, go ahead.

Checks are how primary interaction in combat functions on Bleach Gotei and they exist in multiple types: stat checks, skill checks, and stat-and-skill (“hybrid”) checks.

Stat checks are just that; checks that involve solely the characters’ stats, with no skills coming into the picture in any way. These are typically measures of brute power independent of any kind of finesse. This type of check is typically quite rare.

Skill checks, conversely, do not include stats. The best example is illusionary abilities checking against Reiatsu Perception. A comparison like this is independent of stats—the quality of the illusion is being compared to how adept at perceiving the spiritual someone is. This type of check is not uncommon.

Stat-and-skill checks (or very commonly “hybrid” checks) are stat checks which are then modified by the relationship between the associated skills. The most ready example is of course a simple attack met with a block. The power of the attack must be considered alongside the level of the technique. Hybrid checks first compare stats in order to determine a comparison tier (see below), then the difference in skill (if any) shifts the result in the higher skill’s favor—one tier per rank difference. This type of check is by far the most common.

Comparison Tiers
There are four tiers of comparison on Bleach Gotei, and combat essentially boils down to influencing and interpreting these tiers in order to determine a result. The requisite stat or skill differences that determine a tier are as follows:

Equivalent (–14 or +14 stats/equal skill ranks): The result is effectively equal.
Advantaged (+15 to +49 stats/a skill rank difference of one): The result favors one side.
Superior (+50 to +89 stats/a skill rank difference of two): The result strongly favors one side.
Dominant (+90 or more stats/a skill rank difference of three or more): The result favors one side to an extreme degree.

Checks and comparison tiers exist primarily as a guideline and as a method to resolve potential conflicts of opinion that may arise during the course of player versus player combat. If thread participants can reach other agreements, however, these guidelines (and the ones that follow below) may be tweaked or ignored entirely as long as no participants object.

Types of Checks
Blocking and Dodging
Blocking and dodging are the most commonly occurring checks on Bleach Gotei, and the most rudimentary way to respond to an incoming attack. To block or dodge, a hybrid check is performed: the attacker’s attacking stat and skill versus either the defender’s blocking stat and skill or their Speed and Hohō. For example, an Arrancar may fire a Cero at a Shinigami, who attempts to deflect it with their sword. The Arrancar’s Spirit and Cero skill would be checked against the Shinigami’s Strength and Weapon Proficiency skill. The comparison tiers above are then used to determine whether or not the block or dodge was successful. It is typically always a good idea to attempt a block or a dodge when facing an attack; even a check in favor of the attacker will reduce the resultant wound. The results of blocking and dodging checks are as follows:

Dominant Defender results in a successful block or dodge; all damage is safely avoided.
Superior Defender results in a partially successful block or dodge; a wound is inflicted but it is lowered in severity by three ranks.
Advantaged Defender results in a failed block or dodge; a wound is inflicted but it is lowered in severity by two ranks.
Equivalent Combatants results in a failed block or dodge; a wound is inflicted but it is lowered in severity by one rank.
Advantaged Attacker results in a completely failed block or dodge; a wound is inflicted without reduction.

Wound calculations, or Damage Checks, are what come after a block or dodge check and involve the attacker’s Strength or Spirit and the defender’s Defense in the most commonly occurring stat-only check on Bleach Gotei. The result is then modified by the outcome of the block or dodge (if any occurred) and any skill effects that may apply. While the location of a wound may have thematic importance, it does not necessarily have any bearing on combat: a fatal wound to the foot will end the fight just as readily as a fatal wound to the head.

Important to note is that wounds increase in severity as more damage is inflicted: two wounds of the same severity, regardless of their location on the body, are automatically treated as one wound of a higher severity. For example, two Major wounds are equivalent to a single Severe wound. Similarly, inflicting a second Minor wound on a character who has also suffered a Moderate wound will increase their overall wound level to Major.

The wound ranks and descriptions of what such a wound may encompass are as follows:

Superficial (inflicted at Dominant Defender): Stinging sensations, or like a scratch barely breaking skin. Equivalent to briefly touching a hot pan, leaving a burning sensation but no lasting damage. Difficult even to see, barely noticeable.
Menial (inflicted at Superior Defender): Scrapes, shallow cuts, bruises and sunburns. Visible, but still far from a hindrance.
Minor (inflicted at Advantaged Defender): Slightly deeper cuts, shallow stab wounds, severe bruising and first-degree burns. Painful, but very manageable.
Moderate (inflicted at Equivalent Combatants): Deep cuts, slightly deeper stab wounds, fractured bones and second-degree burns—skin has been partially burned away. Painful, but careful movement might minimize the pain and make it tolerable.
Major (inflicted at Advantaged Attacker): Deep stab wounds, broken bones, torn muscle and third-degree burns—muscle burned away, potentially exposing bone. A painful hindrance, not something easily dealt with.
Severe (inflicted at Superior Attacker): Gaping holes, severed limbs, and parts of the body burnt away entirely. Intolerable pain, bordering on disabling; soldiering on takes every ounce of willpower.
Fatal (inflicted at Dominant Attacker): Vital organs completely destroyed, entire parts of the body torn away or burned to cinders. A death blow, for lack of a better term, far beyond the means of conventional medicine.

Characters on Bleach Gotei are unable to continue fighting at Fatal, though suffering a Fatal wound does not necessarily imply the character has been killed—merely that they are in dire need of medical assistance beyond that of what conventional medicine can provide and are entirely at the mercy of their opponent.

Range between combatants on Bleach Gotei is classified as either being in melee range or outside of melee range. Moving within these ranges is counted as moving insignificant distances and it is assumed that the requisite footwork is part of skills such as Hakuda or Weapon Proficiency. As such, this means that for two melee combatants, range often does not factor in their engagements at all, and movement requires no separate actions. However, increasing or decreasing the range to or from melee range counts as moving a significant distance, thus requiring an action and initiating a hybrid check. In this check (commonly referred to as a range check for simplicity), the combatants’ Speed stats and Hohō skills are checked against one another, and the resulting tier determines whether or not the movement was successful. In order to successfully change range, a character must reach Advantaged.

Once at range, some special conditions come into play. Melee attacks, given their nature, obviously cannot hit characters at range. Similarly, ranged attacks launched from outside melee range have their dodge requirements shifted one tier in the defender’s favor. For example, a Quincy firing his bow at a Shinigami outside melee range would only require the Shinigami to reach Equivalent (as opposed to Advantaged) in order to completely avoid damage while dodging.

Furthermore, a character may choose to escape a fight entirely via the use of a range check. In order to successfully escape a fight, a character much reach Superior if in melee range, or Advantaged if already outside melee range.

It is possible to change range or escape a fight for no additional action when dodging in melee range, provided that the dodge check reaches Advantaged Defender or Superior Defender, respectively.

The manner in and proficiency with which characters perceive other characters on Bleach Gotei via Reiatsu Perception often serves as a starting point for character interaction on Bleach Gotei. In aid of this, and for the potential combat applications that may follow, the Detection check aims to standardize how a difference in Reiatsu Perception ranks may be interpreted.

Equivalent ranks means both characters can sense one another without any problems in order to obtain a rough idea of the other’s power level, race, and location.
A character who reaches Advantaged is able to muddle their presence, making it unclear or hazy—not enough to outright fool the other, but enough to introduce an element of uncertainty in both power level and location.
A character who reaches Superior can also disguise their presence, either as a different race entirely, or as far weaker than they truly are.
A character who reaches Dominant can simply disappear, masking their presence to such a degree that they become invisible to the spiritual sense (and spiritual sense alone).

Keep in mind that these effects take conscious effort to achieve and it is up the character with the advantage in Reiatsu Perception to choose whether or not they are masking their presence, and if so, how.
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