Rules (Skull & Shackles)

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Skull & ShacklesSkull & Shackles
Skull & ShacklesSkull & Shackles
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This is a list of rules for the Skull & Shackles campaign.

A Pirate's Fate

When a character would ordinarily die, they can choose to suffer a random lasting injury (as described in the Shackles Player's Guide). Each such scar gives a +1 bonus on Intimidate checks, and Intimidate never suffers any penalties that otherwise apply to Charisma-based skills.

d20 Battle Scar or Amputation Game effect
1–5 Minor scar Interesting but otherwise cosmetic
6–8 Moderate scar Cut on face, +1 bonus on Charisma-based skill checks for first scar only, subsequent cuts count as a major scar.
9–10 Major scar Severe cut on face, -1 penalty on Charisma-based skill checks
11–14 Loss of finger For every 3 fingers lost, –1 Dex
15–16 Impressive wound -1 Con
17 Loss of eye -4 penalty on all sight-based Perception checks
18 Loss of leg Speed reduced to half, cannot charge
19 Loss of hand Cannot use two-handed items. Losing a single hand or arm does not affect a spellcaster’s ability to cast spells with somatic components.
20 Loss of arm -1 Str, cannot use two-handed items. Losing a single hand or arm does not affect a spellcaster’s ability to cast spells with somatic components.

Character Creation

Player characters are created on build points, starting with 20 points, an additional feat, 2 extra skill points per level, and 0-4 background traits, as specified below.

NPCs are created 15 on build points and get 2 extra skill points per level.


No evil characters. Lawful characters are allowed, but discouraged. Neutral Good, Chaotic good, Neutral, and Chaotic Neutral characters get 1 extra trait.

  • Patrons - The following gods make good patrons for pirates
    • Besmara - CN Common god of piracy - Chaos (Protean), Trickery (Thievery), War (Tactics), Water (Oceans), Weather (Storms). Weapon: Cutlass.
    • Kord - CG Suel/Common god of challenges, strength and bravery - Chaos, Good, Liberation, Luck, Strength. Weapon: Greatsword.
    • Norebo - CN Suel god of luck and gambling - Animal (Fur), Chaos, Charm (Lust), Luck, Trickery. Weapon: Dagger.
    • Procan - CN Oerdian god of storms and oceans - Animal (Fur), Destruction (Catastrophe), Travel (Exploration), Water (Oceans), Weather (Storms). Weapon: Trident.
    • Trithereon - CG Oerdian god of freedom - Chaos (Azata), Good (Azata), Liberation, Protection (Defense), Strength. Weapons: Shortspear, longsword, and greatclub.

Class & Race

  • Recommended Races: Human (Common, Suel, and Tuov).
    Members of these races get an additional trait at character creation. Note that these human sub-races have racial traits. Also note that the campaign takes place in the Common language region, so Common humans gain an additional trait as compensation for getting no native language.
  • Recommended Classes: Alchemist, Bard, Fighter, Oracle, Ranger, Rogue, Summoner, Sorcerer, Wizard.
    Members of these classes get an additional trait at character creation.
  • Discouraged Classes: Cavalier (except new archetypes from here), Monk, Inquisitor, Paladin.
  • Class Options besides those in official Pathfinder


Characters get 0-4 traits from a combination of alignment, race, and class. As opposed to the normal rules, a character can take more than one trait from each category.

Number of traits

  • Campaign-friendly Race
    • Common human +2
    • Suel human +1
    • Tuov Human +1
  • Campaign-friendly Alignment +1
    • Chaotic Good
    • Chaotic neutral
    • Neutral
    • Neutral Good
  • Campaign-friendly Class +1
    • Alchemist
    • Bard
    • Fighter
    • Oracle
    • Ranger
    • Rogue
    • Sorcerer
    • Summoner
    • Wizard

Map Guide to Traits

Human Race Traits

Other Race Traits

Other Traits

See Also