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Merits and Flaws

These are things that you may add or remove from your character at chargen. Each point in a merit costs one bonus point, each point in a Flaw gains you one bonus point. You may have up to 10 points in flaws, or up to two flaws total that exceed this amount


Ambidextrous: 1 pt Merit

You do not have the offhand penalty.

Catlike Balance: 1 pt Merit

+2 dice to all balance checks.

Fast Runner: 1 pt Merit

You may move your Dexterity + Athletics + 12 yards a turn instead of the normal Dexterity + 12.

Poison Resistance: 1-3 pt Merit

You can resist even the strongest of poisons. Each point bought grants you an automatic success to all rolls to resist the effects of poison.

Night Sight: 1 pt Merit

You have excellent night vision. Treat all light conditions as Day when consulting the chart on page 237 of Exalted.

Acute Senses: 3 pt Merit

Lower the difficulty of all Awareness rolls by 2.

Quick Healer: 4 pt Merit

Halve all healing times, with the exception of Aggravated Damage.

Hard of Hearing: 1 pt Flaw

Awareness checks for hearing are at -1 dice. You may take Awareness Charms dealing with hearing but must double the cost to activate such charms.

One Eye: 2 pt Flaw

With only one eye, you character is at a 3 die penalty for all rolls involving depth perception. Other penalties are up to the ST and may depend on the situation.

Slow Healing: 3 pt Flaw

All healing times are doubled for you.

Disfigured/Deformity: 3 pt Flaw

You were disfigured at birth or from an accident during your childhood. Pick one penalty: -4 Socialize, -3 Awareness, -2 Athletics. This flaw may be taken multiple times.

Poor Sight: 3 pt Flaw

You are at a 1 die penalty to checks involving sight You may take Awareness Charms dealing with sight but must double the cost to activate such charms.

Chronic Pain: 4 pt Flaw

You have a chronic pain that won't go away without concentration, increase all your wound penalties by 2. (0 becomes -2, -1 becomes -3, etc.).You may spend one temporary willpower to ignore the effects of this pain for one scene.

Deaf: 4 pt Flaw

You automatically fail checks involving hearing.

Child: 5 pt Flaw

You exalted early in life (10-14 years old), and due to your young age you are not completely physically developed. Strength, Dexterity, and Stamina may not be raised above 3. Endurance, Resistance, Crafts, Investigation, Lore, Medicine, and Occult cannot be raised above 3. You also receive a situational penalty on social rolls involving Adults. These restrictions don’t apply to Caste or Favored Abilities or Attributes. These restrictions apply until you reach the age of physical maturity (typically about 18 years old, or 5 years after character creation, whichever comes later). At this time, you may buy off this flaw. If you do not buy off this flaw, these restrictions still apply, as you are under developed, physically and mentally.


Natural Leader: 1 pt Merit

+2 dice to all leadership rolls.

Creepy: 1 pt Flaw

People find you creepy to be around, most people won’t talk to you unless they have to. -1 dice to all social, bureaucracy, performance rolls. +1 to intimidation checks.

Enemy: (0-2) + (1-5) pt Flaw

This flaw is taken in two separate categories. The first category is the level of animosity between you and your enemy. 0 is that they merely wish to annoy and haras you, but cause you no real harm. 1 is that they want to deal you and those you have around you significant harm, or that they want you to simply be dead. 2 is that they want you dead, but they want you, and everyone around you to suffer horribly first.
The second category is the power level of this opponent. Use the guidelines for Mentor to determine how powerful your opponent, on a 1-5 point scale equal to the rating in the background.
Add these two categories together to determine the full value of this ability.

Ward: 4 pt Flaw

You have a ward (someone you take care of or protect), this can be a friend who didn't exalt, a child you are sure will exalt, your child who might exalt, or whoever you make of it. It is up to the Storyteller to determine the negative effects to a character if their ward is mistreated, kidnapped, or killed.

Fugitive: 5 pt Flaw

You’ve come to the attention of the authorities of the Realm because of criminal activities, either before or after your Exaltation (these accusations may be trumped up, due to framing, or actually true). Your identity and description are known to law enforcement agencies loyal or nominally loyal to the Realm; posters with your picture advertising an award are available at guard-posts and city gates. Bounty hunters may be looking for your head to bring back, dead or alive. You may not hold Status with any group loyal to the Realm. Law enforcement agents will recognize you with an Investigation roll at +2 difficulty; agents from the city or group responsible for issuing the charge roll at standard difficulty.

Hunted: 7 pt Flaw

Although there has been no official Wyld Hunt called since the disappearance of the Empress, the Terrestrial Exalted still take the time to hunt down the most blatant of Celestial Exalted that plague the Realm. You are one such Exalted to earn the ire, for whatever reason, of the Nobles of the Realm and a great deal of prestige would be earned for claiming your head. In any part of the Realm that there are Terrestrial Exalted, you are in danger of being hunted down. Informants are looking for you, and informants that lead the Dragon-Blooded to Celestial Exalted are handsomely rewarded. The Storyteller should make checks to see if you are spotted, altering the difficulty based on how well you disguise your self and what Charms you use to attract or obscure detection. This Flaw may shorten the life span of your character considerably, but will certainly provide your character with no shortage of intrigue surrounding his existence.


Internal Compass: 1 pt Merit

You know which way is toward the Elemental Pole of Earth at all times.

Crack Shot: 2 pt Merit

As a simple action that cannot be split, placed in a combo, or be supplemented by a combo, the character may add his perception to his accuracy for a single Archery or Thrown attack.

Fast Learner: 2 pt Merit

Pick one: attributes, abilities, charms. Training times are reduced by 25% for the selected. This cannot be stacked with the bonus from Patient. This flaw may be taken along with impatient.

Combat Veteran: 3 pt Merit

You choose one per time taken but cannot take the same one twice: +1 initiative melee, thrown, martial arts, brawl, damage, or b/l soak.

Daredevil: 3 pt Merit

+1 stunt die to any stunt that chances you getting hurt, +2 dice to any action that is dangerous to the character.

Eidetic Memory: 3 pt Merit

You can remember minute details of any thing you've seen or heard.

Extra Favored Ability: 4 pt Merit

You may choose one additional favored ability at character creation.

Patient: 4 pt Merit

Reduce all training times by 25% round up.

Natural Linguist: 4 pt Merit

Double the number of languages you can know based on your Linguistics score. If you are confronted with a unfamiliar language you may immediately make a Wits or Intelligence + Linguistics roll to immediately pick up the basics of that language and be able to understand simple sentences and directions.

Natural Craftsman: 3 pt Merit

Reduces crafting time by 25% and add three dice to any roll involving the actual physical crafting of an item.

Strong Willed: 4 pt Merit

Regain 1.5 willpower per success when rolling Conviction every morning, round down.

Self-Confident: 7 pt Merit

On any roll, involving a caste or favored ability, in which you buy an automatic success with willpower or channel a virtue, you regain one point of temporary willpower on successful completion that action.

Cowardly: 1 pt Flaw

You cannot spend willpower to add your valor to a roll.

Impatient: 1 pt Flaw

Increase all training times by 25%.

Phobia: 2 pt Flaw

You have a phobia; in situations where your phobia comes into play you have a 2 dice penalty. Phobia types must be approved by the ST.

Combat Stress: 3 pt Flaw

You receive a die pool penalty of -1 for every opponent beyond the first fighting you at the same time.

Low Pain Threshold: 3 pt Flaw

When you are beyond your -0 health levels, add 1 point to all wound penalties (-1 becomes -2, -2 becomes -3, etc.)

Seasick: 3 pt Flaw

You don’t adapt well to life on the seas; the constant rocking motion disrupts your balance, and your stomach, leading to difficulty in taking any actions. While at sea, you’re at -3 on all dice pools. Spending a Willpower point and succeeding on a standard Resistance roll will reduce the penalty, for your next action, by 1 die for each success rolled (not to exceed 3 dice). It is possible to obtain herbs and homebrew cures to fight the effects of seasickness; these can be found in herbal remedy stores and exclusive port inns (needing Resources 1 to purchase enough curatives to last one trip). This medicine sets a flat –1 to all dice pools (which cannot be eliminated by the above roll).

Weak Willed: 3 pt Flaw

When rolling to regain willpower in the morning, it takes 1.5 successes, round up to regain one WP.

Ability Deficit: 4-7-10 pt Flaw

You have one less favored ability for each level you take.


Animal Magnetism: 1 pt Merit

You have an easy time getting an animals acceptance, one auto success to any animal handling check.

Shrouded Caste Mark: 1 pt Merit

The character’s Anima Banner is slower to flare with the burning of Peripheral Essence than other Exalted. Whereas most Exalted begin to display their Caste Mark immediately after spending Peripheral Essence, your character may spend up to three motes of Peripheral Essence before consulting the Peripheral Essence Spending Effects chart on page 149 of the core rulebook. Once more than three motes are spent however, the effect of spending 1-3 motes of Essence is immediately skipped to and the chart progresses normally. This gives the character a little leeway in spending Essence when stealth and obfuscation are paramount.

Luck: 3-5-7 pt Merit

Depending on the level you buy, you may reroll 1-3 rolls per story, taking the second result, even if it is worse than the first.

Sniffer: 4 pt Merit

After your Exaltation, you learned that you had a sort of internal compass that allows you to tell the proximity of other Exalted. If you spend one full round concentrating and successfully roll Essence against a standard difficulty, you can tell how many Exalted are within an approximate distance, not to exceed five miles. Distances are given in general terms, such as nearby, far, or on the edge of detection, and not specific numbers, e.g. 90 feet. If the character concentrates for another round and succeeds on a second Essence roll against a standard difficulty, the character can determine which direction the Exalted is, whether she is approaching or leaving, and how fast she is moving. You can use this Merit a number of times equal to your Essence per day.

Favored Technique Tree: 4 pt Merit

You are particularly skilled in Charms stemming from one chosen Ability, either a Caste or Favored Ability. When making a roll while using a Charm derived from your Favored Ability, such as the Salty Dog Method from Sail, you may add an additional die to your roll. The Ability must be designated when this Merit is taken.

Talisman of Luck: 5 Points Merit

The character is so blessed with good luck, that those traveling with her often consider her a lucky mascot for them, rival to any talisman. Once per session the character may reroll any dice pool of her own, or allow a re-roll of any other players dice pool. Once the dice are re-rolled the second result must stand. The lucky character must be present in a scene for a re-roll to be allowed.

Spirit Sight: 4 pt Merit

As the charm Spirit Sight, except that it can be activated or deactivated as a simple action, with no mote cost. You must still buy the charm as a prerequisite for other charms.

Extra Gift: 5 pt Merit

This merit grants a Lunar Exalted one additional gift in their Deadly Beastman Form. This merit cannot be taken by other types of exalts. This Merit may only be taken once.

Additional Attunement: 7 pt Merit

The character can choose one other type of the five magical materials (not counting their own) that they may naturally attune to without penalty (as on pg.338 of the main Exalted handbook.)

Hidden Anima: 7 Points Merit

Your anima tends to release spent essence slowly, leaking it out gently over time rather than exploding it out immediately after you spend it. The result of this is that your anima banner takes longer to appear, and only rarely gets as severe as that of other Solars. Half of your peripheral essence pool is considered to be personal essence.

Vulnerability: 1-7 pt Flaw

You have a vulnerability to one of the 5 Magic Materials. If you wield or wear an item of this material, you receive a dice penalty equal to the level of the flaw. If struck with an object of this metal, your opponent adds dice to his presoak damage equal to the level of this flaw.

Essence of Molasses: 2 or 4 pt Flaw

Regaining Essence is a frustrating experience for you; instead of regaining Essence at a rate comparable to other Exalted, you regain it at a slower rate. It is as if Essence were being absorbed into you through a clogged funnel instead of an open pipe. For 2 points, you regain only ¾ the essence that you would normally regain without this flaw (at rest, you only regain three motes every hour, while sleeping only helps you regain six motes). For 4 points, you only regain half as much Essence as normal (at rest, you only regain two motes every hour, while sleeping only helps you regain four motes). This flaw similarly affects the rate you regain Essence while in a Manse or using a Hearthstone.

Caste Scar: 3 pt Flaw

Upon the character's exaltation her caste mark was burning so intensely that she was left with a scar in form of the mark, forever visible on her forehead. Unless she covers it she will be clearly recognized as an Exalt. Furthermore her essence seeps through the scar when she uses it to fuel her charms. The first two steps of the anima banner apply to her even if she uses essence from her personal pool. This charm may not be taken by Dragon Blooded characters.

Necromantic Prohibition: 3-5-7 pt Flaw

The character, through either failed experimentation, edict of his superiors, or fear for his life will refuse to use Necromancy to varying degrees. For 3 points, they are banned from the highest circle of necromancy they can cast. For five points, they are banned from the next lower circle of necromancy. Abyssal Exalted may take a 7 point version of this flaw that prevents them from using any of the three circles of necromancy.

Sorcerous Prohibition: 3-5-7 pt Flaw

The character, through either failed experimentation, edict of his superiors, or fear for his life will refuse to use Sorcery to varying degrees. For 3 points, they are banned from the highest circle of Sorcery they can cast. For five points, they are banned from the next lower circle of Sorcery. Solar Exalted may take a 7 point version of this flaw that prevents them from using any of the three circles of Sorcery.

Unlucky: 3 pt Flaw

Once per story the ST can ask you to reroll a roll, taking the worst of the 2 rolls.

Brilliant Anima: 5 Points Flaw

Your anima releases spent essence explosively. The result of this is that your anima banner begins appearing as soon as you spend essence. All of your essence is considered to be peripheral for purposes of anima flare.

Inefficient Essence: 6 pt Flaw for Solars, 8 pt Flaw for Lunars and 9 for Dragon Blooded.

When powering your Charms with Essence, you must spend one more mote per charm activated in order to activate that Charm. When activating Combos, you must spend one additional mote for every Charm in the Combo. This penalty does not apply to Sorcery.

Weak Essence: 6 pt Flaw

Your Exaltation has resulted in no increase in Essence over other mortals, and is not comparable to other Exalted at your level of development. Instead of starting at two your Essence starts at one, lowering your Essence Pool and restricting access to Charms that require higher Essence. You need not spend additional experience costs when raising your Essence score; you simply start at a disadvantage compared to other Exalted.

Like all Merit/Flaw systems, many of these seem ripe for abuse, especially Sorcerous and Necromantic Prohibition. Enemy seems kind of odd as well, given that for Solars and Lunars, they already have the entire Realm and especially the Wyld Hunt as enemies. I'm also not fond of all the various ones that just consist of modifiers to certain activities. That's what base stats and specializations are supposed to cover, and adding an extra layer of fiddly complexity seems inelegant.

-- Mapache

All merit and flaw systems are blatantly abusable... you jsut have ot trust your players and your ST not to abuse them.


I think the Flaw costs (the ones generally most open to abuse) are way too expensive. This is exalted. 1 freebie point is of HUGE value.

- combine hard of hearing and one eye as a one point flaw
- slow healing should be a one point flaw (with all the charms around)
- disfigured is perhaps a two pointer, if not one
- child, 3 points and DOES apply to caste and favoured or there is no point

I haven't looked as closely, but this would probably translate into the Merits being too expensive too ... e.g. Quick Healer should cost 2 points max, maybe one.

Perhaps rather start with 20 freebie points, and halve (round down) all the costs above? - BrokenShade