I’m changing the way Traits are allocated in my Vivid system. To make things simpler, I’ll have players simply assign their Traits on a ‘countdown’ of ratings from 4 to 1. This is the same way I’ll be creating monsters and anything else that needs statting in the game.
For example, Rafiq al-Husayri, countdown version:
Student of the lute and romantic verse 4
Son of a Feranian merchant prince 3
Surprisingly competent duelist 2
Dashingly Handsome 1
I’ve also come up with a mechanic for creating more powerful Traits that can only be used a limited number of times. For example, here’s an Arcurean Dragon from my Syrene setting:
Arcurean Dragon 5
Spit Flaming Venom 9/3
Master of Stealth and Camouflage 4
Lizard Form 1
In the ‘countdown’ system for creatures and NPCs, you can simply assign the dice for the highest Trait, and count down from there until you reach 1 die. You can skip numbers for which you don’t have Traits.
So in this example the Arcurean Dragon’s most powerful trait is its ability to spit flaming venom, assigned 6 dice; this was doubled, giving me 12, which I then split between its new die pool and the number of times the Spit attack can be used, which is 3 times.
The Arcurean Dragon has a strange ability that allows it to disappear without a trace, but is also a major weakness; it sleeps in the form of a lizard, no more than a foot or so long. It was inspired by a dragon from a Spanish fairy tale. (At least I think the origin is Spanish, as I first had it told to me in Filipino and the only time I ever saw the idea again was in a translated Spanish tale.)