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The DAYONE Rule book - Some Excerpts

These are some excerpts to give you an idea of the scope of the project and some of the more important points that you should cover if you too are embarking on the creation of a world and a game.


©1998 -- ShrewGames

……………. A Framework for Your ImaginationTM


The Personae said to Misao
"Misao, We think!"
"However," replied the Misao,
"The thought is not created in me/us
That you exist, therefore you must Interact and Resolve the riddle."
The Hexarch of the Sixth Circle, SV 1000



- A -

ACCOMPLISHMENT -- When an entity attempts a non-combat task such as climbing a rope, cooking a meal, or learning to fly, the effectiveness roll results in accomplishment. When, after several successful attempts at the necessary tasks, the accumulated accomplishments exceed the robustness of the task, the task is resolved. (Note: the Director determines robustness in accordance with the situation and the Scenario). When an entity finally resolves a task, it earns the right to embodiment points. The embodiment award depends upon the ratio of the entity’s robustness to the task’s robustness.

ACTION -- An Action is the portion of an Interaction that is initiated by an entity. Success and effectiveness measure the results of an Action.

APTITUDE -- Aptitude represents the ability of the Persona to acquire or learn new skills. The number of aptitudes is determined separately for each Persona Trait. Some skills require more than one aptitude. In addition, certain skills have priority in the allocation of skills to aptitudes.

AUXILIARY SKILL -- An auxiliary skill has a synergistic relationship with its associated primary skill. The effect of the auxiliary skill on the primary skill is indicated on the individual skill card for that skill.

- B -

BASIC SKILL -- A basic skill is the zero level skill in a series of skills. Each additional level is a skill in itself requiring its own aptitude slot.

- C -

CALLED SHOT -- An entity may exercise a skill using a called shot at the discretion of the Director, whereby a very specific target is indicated, such as an item or a limb. When this is done, the SR is modified by a factor of 2. If success requires a high SR, the SR is halved. If success requires a low SR, the SR is doubled.

Many More Terms included in the rule book ----------------


A Persona is a Personalized ideal “Embodiment” created by the Player in order to enter the DAYONE SUPERVERSE. Each Player controls all the various required decisions, movements, Interactions, Actions, and Reactions of his or her Persona, within the constraints set forth by the Director and these Rules.

The Player is assisted by information about entities, items, and skills described within various Props.


A Director is a Player who has accepted responsibility for controlling the operation of the gaming session. The Players can give the Director total control of all aspects of the game, or they may limit the scope of the Directors' decision-making powers so that the Director is only a referee or judge. There may be more than one Director for a gaming session, although this is usually unnecessary for enjoyable play.

By definition, a Director has access to more information than most Players do. However, the Director is not necessarily omniscient or omnipotent. The Director is assisted by information regarding Scenarios, Indigenous Personae, History, and other secrets contained within Director’s notes, Scripts, and other Props.

1.2.1 The decisions of the session Directors (majority rule) are based on DAYONE rules, History, examples, logic, common sense, and the information in the Scenario. By contrast, most Players can only know about the game environment through information available to his or her Persona during the game.

1.2.2 A Director who is also an active Player with a Persona is subject to the normal rules of DAYONE. From time to time, the Director ignores the Persona in order to consult Scripts, notes, or other Props.

1.2.3 If there is more than one Director at a session, they may freely exchange information. However, they can only affect the DAYONE SUPERVERSE with majority approval of all Directors present at that session.

1.2.4 Players can suggest additional situations and ideas for the DAYONE SUPERVERSE at any time. These additions must have the approval of a majority (50%+1) of the Directors present at the game session. However, once introduced, the situation or fact can only be further modified or destroyed in accordance with game world events.

1.2.5 The decisions of the Director(s), within the agreed scope of their authority, are final.


A Persona can enter the game at any time, but only events within the DAYONE SUPERVERSE can destroy a Persona, even if the Player has left the game. An absent Player’s Persona becomes a Hidden Persona. A Hidden Persona remains part of the reality of the SUPERVERSE without participating in decisions, events, or Interactions.


At the beginning of the game, each Player will choose a name for his or her Persona, recording it on the Persona’s Entity Cards. The name should be consistent with the culture intended by the Scenario, and therefore may be vetoed by the Director. In addition, Players must declare any Inborn Skills and/or Talent before the game starts.

The Director should not exercise a veto over a name unless absolutely necessary for the integrity of the game.


The Embodiment, or nature, of the Persona is described, defined, and developed through its Persona Traits, in accordance with the following cycle of growth:

During the game, the Persona earns Units for each Trait, thereby improving the capacity, or Aptitude, to learn specific Skills.

Acquired Skills gradually improve, advancing in Grade, and their associated Professions advance in Rank. Success with these Skills hopefully leads to Resolution of various challenges.

Closing the cycle, Resolution further increases the Persona’s Embodiment, increasing Persona Units and Skill development.

Along with this cycle, Units accumulate and the Persona Traits develop Resistance to attack. This Resistance contributes to the overall Robustness of the Persona, protecting it from Impairment as it pursues its goals and continues to accumulate Skill Points.



An Entity's ability to learn and perform one particular Action or Reaction is called a Skill.

3.1.1 The probability of Successful expression of each Skill is directly related to the number of Units earned within the relevant Persona Trait.

3.1.2 Although suggested Skill Cards are available, and novel or specialized Skills may be included within individual Scenarios, the Entities are not limited to these Skills. The Director should invite Players to submit Skill Cards into the game at any time. These added Skills are then available to any Entity able to meet the requirements indicated on the Skill Card. These requirements include prerequisite Skills, Items of equipment, or Teachers, and may be prohibitive at certain phases of the Scenario. All Skills must be kept within the constraints of logic, History, and common sense, and the rules of the game.

A Specialty is a learned Skill reflecting the Persona’s interest and knowledge regarding a specific activity. A Skill can be acquired, but proficiency at that Skill must be learned and developed through practice and/or instruction.

An example of a Physical Trait Specialty Skill is the Skill of Long Sword Usage. When a Persona first acquires this Skill, it has the Skill to pick up a long sword, handle the weapon, and use it well enough not cause itself bodily harm.

3.2.1 Specialty Skills follow the general rules pertaining to all Skills, except where stated. Each additional Specialty Skill requires one (1) available Aptitude in order to be expressed. Record the knowledge of the Skill, indicating the use of one free Aptitude, on the Entity’s Trait Card, and track the Skill’s progress on the Cards.


Inborn Skills are inherited as part of the genetic make-up of a Species.

An example of an Inborn Skill is the Skill to see in the infrared. A Persona that has Infrared Vision sees different degrees of heat, i.e., the Persona can see other warm bodied Entities that radiate heat more than the surrounding environment.

3.3.1 Inborn Skills follow the general rules pertaining to all Skills, except where stated. They require several Aptitudes to be expressed, as described below.

The Rule book is comprehensive and has lots of materials. It is of course all copyrighted and if you are interested in learning more or working with the creators then use the contact email in the left sidebar of this page.



Please note: all the materials for the Ivory Sword are copyright© and may not be copied or reproduced in any manner without express written consent of the authors.

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