In Delve, you have attributes and talents. Sure, you have gear too, but that’s a chat for another day. In Primary and Secondary, I gave a brief outline of what the attributes represent and what they’re all about. Talents feature much more diversity.

Talents are the building blocks of each character. Some talents are granted by a creature’s type. All humanoids, for instance, gain a set of basic talents. Other talents are granted by race and still more are granted by your class. As your level increases, so do your talents.
In a nutshell, talents grant you access to a type of action or reaction, modify another talent, or modify an attribute. On rare occasions, they might do two or more of those things. Sometimes they do even more complicated thing. Let’s take a look at this unusual talent.


Faithful Hound is a quirky talent. One of the general talents any character can take, it grants you a dog that faithfully accompanies you on your adventure. The talent provides the statistics of the dog and its rules. Some of these rules are abbreviated as elements. A talent’s elements are presented at the bottom of a talent. Faithful Hound features both the companion and the trainable element. The companion element features the rules that govern all companion creatures. For ease of play, it’s most important rule is listed within the dog’s statistics: you gain two extra actions each round that allow you to command companion creatures. You can spend one of your other actions to control companion creatures as well, but companion creatures typically can’t take more than three actions. Trainable just means that you can improve the hound with enough down time while you’re holing up in a city. It’s fun, somewhat eccentric, and cool. It can also be very effective, but let’s look at another type of talent. This talent is one of the mainstays of the game.


This is Ez the iconic rogue’s main Strike talent. Most actors in Delve have the Strike talent. It allows you to hit and attempt to damage a creature, typically with a weapon. While the basis of the talent is an Athletics resolution against Armor, this is one of the most modifiable and modified talents in the game. First off, the Strike’s particulars are highly dependent on the weapon you are wielding. Ez uses daggers, which is agile weapons (using Agility instead of Athletics for resolution) and can be thrown. Daggers deal a base of 1d4 +Athletic damage, and due to Ez’s dirty fighting tactic, she deals and extra 1d8 damage to creatures she has advantage against.

Strike is also an action. That’s what the diagonal arrow, right before the talent’s name on the description line, indicates. This means that you can take this on your turn. If you remember the Heroic Save from Tuesday’s installment, you might remember the circular arrow indicator. That means it’s a reaction. Reactions can be used even when it’s not your turn, as long as its trigger occurs.

But we will talk action economies on Tuesday.


Author: SRM

Stephen began working on RPGs in 2000, when he became the RPGA editorial assistant at Wizards of the Coast, working on both Polyhedron magazine and Living Greyhawk Journal. Over the years he's administered the Living Greyhawk campaign, aided in the development of the D&D 3.5 Edition rules, was a developer for D&D 4th Edition and Star Wars Saga Edition, taught numerous game design classes in the Seattle area, and contributed to the Pathfinder RPG Advanced Player's Guide and Ultimate Magic as a freelance designer. He worked at Paizo for nearly nine years as a designer and then senior designer for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. He's also the guy who designs the Pathfinder Flip-Mats, Flip-Tiles, and Map Packs. His current credits include Southlands for Kobold Press, as well as Hell’s Vengeance: For Queen & Empire, Horror Adventures,  Villain Codex, and Ultimate Intrigue, Ultimate Wilderness, Pathfinder Playtest, and Pathfinder Second Edition all for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game. He was also on the initial design team for the Starfinder Roleplaying Game and wrote Dead Suns: The Thirteenth Gate adventure for that game. He served as the senior designer for the Pathfinder Playtest and the Pathfinder Second Edition Roleplaying Game. Currently, Stephen is a freelance game designer, content writer, and consultant working with various companies when he is not spending time with his family, wrangling kittens, and working on Delve. Delve is a culmination of Stephen's ideas about tabletop roleplaying games over the past 19 years. It's a new look at d20-resolution systems and traditional fantasy roleplaying game design and tropes through the lens of more modern modes of game design. And Stephen sincerely hopes you enjoy playing it because that's the point.

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