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Training Time Chart

Trait Increase Time Required
Attribute [current rating] x224 hours
Ability [see below]
Specialty 32 hours.
Favoured/Aspect Charm [min. Ability] x8 hours
Out-of-Aspect Charm [min. Ability + min. Essence] x8 hours
Creating a Charm [time to learn equivalent charm] x5. Cannot be tutored or use manuals
Emerald Circle Spell 56 hours
Sapphire Circle Spell 112 hours
Adamant Circle Spell 168 hours
Creating a Spell [time to learn equivalent Spell] x5. Cannot be tutored or use manuals

Time calculated in hours spent solely on intensive training, with the aid of a tutor.

Example: Mnemon Vesko has been working hard in order to increase his Strength of 4. While he does not have a tutor, he has access to a number of manuals written by his mother on the subject of punching Anathema and lifting temple buildings for relocation. It will take Vesko [224x4/0.75=] 1195 hours of training to reach Strength 5. As Vesko also has important duties guarding gates and lookiing good at parties, he can only spare 4 hours each day for this training... Vesko will reach Strength 5 in just under 11 months, provided he maintains his regimen.

Ability Increase

Abilities represent broad capabilities, with Specialties representing specific areas of knowledge and understanding. A fighter with 3 dots of Melee fights as well with an axe, a sword, a club, and a spear... because to master Melee 3 she learned to fight with axe, sword, club, and spear.

Abilities are increased by way of accumulating specialties. For each Ability dot rating, there is a set number of different specialties that, when reached, convert from an array of Specialty dots to a single Ability dot. As the Ability dots increase, the number of different specialties required increases, forcing the character to expand their understanding of the subject ever more broadly.

Example 1: Black Wood, young member of a bandit gang, is seeking to improve his Melee abilities. He has one dot of Melee (Ability) and Melee Specialty (scythe) x3. He takes some time to practice with a looted blade and gains the Melee Specialty (chopping sword) x1. Because Ability increase from 1 to 2 requires 2 different specialties, Black Wood’s general understanding of Melee has increased sufficiently to raise the Ability itself. He loses two different specialties (Melee (chopping sword) and Melee (scythe)), ending up with Melee 2 & Melee Specialty (scythe) x2.

Example 2: Historian Sesus Ketek has been attempting to expand his academic knowledge of Lore (Ability). He has Lore 4 with specialties History x3, Shogunate x3, Deep South x2, Plains of Rusted Iron x1, Arjuf x1, Scarlet Empire x1, House Sesus x1. He spends time in the city of Chiaroscuro , learning from its historians and storytellers and reading texts from its libraries, to earn a Lore specialty in Chiaroscuro. When his studies are complete, he has 8 different specialties, and 8 transform into his 5th dot of Lore, leaving him at Lore 5 with specialties History x2, Shogunate x2, Deep South x1.

Ability Increase Specialties Required Other Requirements
New Ability (0 to 1) 3 Specialties -
Ability 1 to 2 2 Specialties -
Ability 2 to 3 4 Specialties -
Ability 3 to 4 6 Specialties -
Ability 4 to 5 8 Specialties Tutor or training manual
Ability 5 to 6 10 Specialties Essence 6, tutor or training manual
Ability 6 to 7 12 Specialties Essence 7, tutor or training manual

Increasing Specialties

Each Specialty costs 1xp and 32 hours to train.

Increasing Essence

To increase Essence beyond a character's 'natural cap' requires them to spend [new rating] in seasons engaged in nothing but meditative contemplation, and in case of Dragonblooded exposure to their element of aspect. Increasing Essence up to a character's 'natural cap' is instantaneous, requiring only a moment of personal enlightenment.

For mortals, the 'natural cap' is 1. For Exalts, the 'natural cap' is 3. Spirits do not increase their Essence by these conventional means.

Meaning of Days

In Exalted's mechanics, the issue of time is a major problem. Many things list the time they require (training, crafting, and others besides) in days, but what this means can be ambiguous.

To clarify, when a 'day' of work is specified, what is meant is a period of 8 hours focused on the task and nothing else. Considering this span, less than a third of the 25 hours in a day, to be a full day's work dates from the original design of humans: they were built to spend 8 hours sleeping to rest and recuperate, 8 hours on subsistence tasks (feeding and clothing themselves), 8 hours on service (raising children, serving the Dragon Kings, praying to gods and Primordials, etc), and one hour on prayer to the Incarnae.

A week of training is thus 56 hours, a month 224 hours, a season 672 hours, and a year 3360 hours.

Natural Affinity

Each hour spent training a favoured or aspect ability counts as two hours training time due to natural affinity.

Training without a Trainer

Each hour spent training WITHOUT the aid of a trainer or tutor counts as only 1/2 an hour of training time.

Training with a Manual

Each hour spent training WITHOUT a trainer, but WITH a training aid such as a high-quality manual counts as 3/4 of an hour of training time. A manual used along with a trainer provides no additional benefit.

Training Manuals may have specific Ability minimums required before they can be used by a character, and maximums after which they no longer provide benefit (counts as training without a tutor).

Abilities 5 and Over

Abilities may increase beyond 5, but their maximum is the higher of 5 or Essence. Thus, a character could learn Lore 6 if they had Essence 6, but can learn Lore 5 if they have Essence 1.

At advanced levels of study, it becomes difficult to intuit ways to advance without assistance or complex methodologies. To increase specialties (and thus abilities) whose associated Ability is already 4 or higher, a character must have a trainer, training manual, or an impressive Stunt!

Back-to-Back Training

If training is undertaken for seven or more consecutive days (of 8 hours per day), a Stamina+Resistance check must be passed. Failure means the next day is wasted on rest and recovery.

Charm Requirements

Charms do not spontaneously generate, and must be learned from trainers/manuals. A character attempting to learn a charm without the aid of either counts as trying to design that charm.

Those without training infrastructure thus take a great deal of time to grasp their Essence and Charms, a particular struggle for the new-Exalted Solars now appearing in Creation, who must spend significant time learning what they have become. To these Solars, access to trainers in the form of remembered Charms from Past Lives can be key to survival.

Designing Out-of-Aspect Charms

Designing Charms out-of-Aspect is a difficult thing. Unless the character has mastered the relevant style of Immaculate Martial Arts or otherwise escapes elemental surchages on charms, required time is increased by x1.5

Rounding Numbers

The smallest unit of time training is one hour. In cases where math says requirements include fractions of an hour, always round up.

Expanded Training Time Chart

For ease of reference.

Trait with Tutor Favoured with Tutor with Manual Favoured with Manual Independently Favoured independently
Specialty 32 hours 16 hours 43 hours 22 hours 64 hours 32 hours
Charm [min. Ability + min. Essence] x8 hours [min. Ability] x8 hours [min. Ability + min. Essence] x11 hours [min. Ability] x11 hours [min. Ability + min. Essence] x80 hours [min. Ability] x80 hours