Hidden benefit of a high charisma

So, I was running this game a few days ago. The half-elf tiefling warlock was obnoxious, instigating action from others by calling his fellow companions "coward" and pawning off his murderous intent on a fellow tiefling dwarf. Zatar was a blatant bastard of a PC.

It wasn't until the end of the session that Zatar's player mentioned something important - if it wasn't for his high charisma, he'd probably be thrown out of the party. Well, that's what this article is about.

Back in the old school days, charisma was kind of a dump stat. If you were rolling in order, you prayed for good luck on strength or maybe dex, int, etc. When it came time to roll for charisma, there was no fear of rolling bad. Assuming you were able to move your scores around, charisma is where you put your unfortunate 6.

Modern editions have character classes that hinge upon charisma, but even gamers using the new stuff can make use of this hidden benefit.

A character with high charisma has license to be a jerk, cad, scoundrel, ass, buffoon, bounder, rake, scalawag, or creep. Why? Because a charming asshole with pleasing features or rapier wit can get away with loathsome manners and atrocious behavior without facing an exile ultimatum. And even after that PC pushes his or her luck, the heel can probably find a way to weasel out of expulsion.

Sure, the other players at the table might bristle at your detestable antics. Nevertheless, that high charisma shields you from their wrath. After all, you hold the group together with your magnetic personality.

So, the next time you find yourself with an extraordinarily charismatic character, remember that you can do more than attract followers. You can be an utter bastard, too!


Authored by Venger Satanis


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