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    Default [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I was just looking at a bunch of 3D6-in-order ability score results, and there was an odd one: an elf with a wisdom and charisma of 4.

    It got me thinking: what does such a low score mean in terms of charisma?

    The other 5 scores, I can get a sense of what a very low or high score means. But what about Charisma?
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Charisma represents your force of personality and ability to assert yourself as an entity. A person of Charisma 3 is effectively at the bare minimum for creaturehood and is probably easy to manipulate.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I'd say extremely awkward socially. Cannot pick up on body language, oftentimes slips up on etiquette, performs social faux pas on a regular basis, no good at expressing themselves, can't pick up on sarcasm or understand what sarcasm is… At least, that's one way to look at it. If you were to add in looks, you could say they have no fashion sense, possibly poor hygiene (or at least poor grooming) which results in poor teeth, BO, disheveled hair, and the like. People wouldn't want to associate with them, as they are very awkward to be around. Their lack of ability to pick up on social cues would also make them very easy marks for con men, as they couldn't tell when someone is lying, even if the lies are VERY obvious.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ksheep View Post
    I'd say extremely awkward socially. Cannot pick up on body language, oftentimes slips up on etiquette, performs social faux pas on a regular basis, no good at expressing themselves, can't pick up on sarcasm or understand what sarcasm is… At least, that's one way to look at it. If you were to add in looks, you could say they have no fashion sense, possibly poor hygiene (or at least poor grooming) which results in poor teeth, BO, disheveled hair, and the like. People wouldn't want to associate with them, as they are very awkward to be around. Their lack of ability to pick up on social cues would also make them very easy marks for con men, as they couldn't tell when someone is lying, even if the lies are VERY obvious.
    The way I look at it is that with the non-physical Attributes, (WIS, INT, CHA), 3 is barely human, mostly animal. someone with a charisma of 3? You'd have to train them and lead them around on a leash, or they'd attack people they don't like, take things they want, and talk like a barbarian or just in growls.

    Alternately, you'd probably end up like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPgcmsQO4Is#t=609
    That is, bland as mush and easily swayed by others.

    That's just me, though. I feel it's kind of a tough question.
    Last edited by GoblinGilmartin; 2014-03-05 at 02:39 AM.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Cha 3 sounds like an inability to successfully deal with other people.

    I'd list some example traits and behaviors as such:
    • Almost complete unawareness of social situations or basic etiquette.
    • No idea of what to say, or when to say things ("Wow you look like s***. Being a [insert racial slur here] must be so hard for you, how do you deal with it?"). There is no barrier between this person's mind and mouth. Whether he means to or not, he constantly offends others with his crass and dismissive remarks.
    • Never makes eye contact.
    • Bizarre and disgusting tics (picks nose and belly-button in public, flaps hands as if imitating a bird, cracks knuckles, rubs crotch)
    • Routinely shrieks, grunts, or makes similar unpleasant vocalizations, unknowingly interrupting other peoples' speech.
    • No inside voice. Either unintelligibly quiet or excessively loud.
    • Mumbles his own thoughts strangely and often, as though speaking to unheard voices. And not in a cool way, either. It just looks sad to watch.
    • Might be completely incapable of speech.
    • Stares creepily (i.e. his eyes are always on your chest/crotch, and it's really weird).
    • Drools.
    • Probably does not have any friends to speak of. Even this person's family would rather he simply disappeared.
    • No concept of personal space (will walk into kissing range and breathe creepily on you as if nothing's wrong. He will not get the hint.)
    • Extremely poor communication skills (rambles about nonsense without getting to the point, poor writing skills, will not allow others to speak)


    Obviously, all of these at once would be more like Cha 1, but picking some of them should work.
    Last edited by Slipperychicken; 2014-03-05 at 02:48 AM.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Also had a similliar situation with ADnD game with a charisma of grand total of 4. I think that this guy just don't really think of himself as "human"\whateverhiscreaturetype. He may not be just socially inept, he also cannot assert himself. People tend to overlook and dismiss his suggestions, not because he disgust them, they just cannot really notice him. It is hard for him to make decisions. He considers himself more of a doll, or a tool, he isn't bad at picking lies (sense motive is a wisdom, after all, at least it was decent in my case), just sarcasm, and without ability to insticivly pick up on decent or not decent things (abovementioned social faux pas) he tries to depend on logic, which sometimes backfires. In other words it is more of emotionless socially incapable husk. He operates just fine and can think just fine, he just cannot really identify himself as part of socium or really as anything...

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Charisma and Wisdom 4 means that you're pretty much Chris-chan. Look him up if you don't know who that is. Or better yet, don't. It's saner this way.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    There's heavy debate over exactly what that would mean, it would mean roughly that your personality is equivalent to an animal's intelligence. There's significant inconsistency in the rules as to whether or not appearance is a factor (maiming strike damaging charisma for one, ugly monsters having lower charisma in AD&D), or whether it's just force of personality. I would say the actual effect of a score that's so low would be that you'd just barely have any personality at all (but it's not quite clear).

    So the end point is that the whole matter is generally moot, and will vary greatly from game to game.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Incredibly low ability to influence other more or less sapient beings in any way, even if you can beat them up without breaking a sweat, have more money, power and whatever else.

    Charisma 0 means that the character is withdrawn into a catatonic, coma-like stupor
    So I would guess that character with 3 charisma is somehow 'asleep' in any social situations, cannot follow changes and emotions in relations, cannot understand what is happening.

    Is easily influenced and 'dragged around' like a sleeping person indeed, or/and in other situations is completely, morbidly non-responding to interpersonal stimuli.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    3 charisma is still within the range of human/demi-human ability scores, so it isn't like an animal. In AD&D, 3 charisma still allows you to have one henchman (though they are more likely to run away), so it isn't something that wealth and fame can't overcome somewhat. You definitely shouldn't be negotiating for the party or be responsible for leading the troops, but you aren't some kind of monster (unless you are). You may be average looking with very poor social skills, or ugly by "civilized" standards or generally off-putting for some other reason.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Wisdom and charisma of 4 is you're basically a shell of a person. You can think logically, but you almost lack any will of your own. You're basically a robot.
    Black text is for sarcasm, also sincerity. You'll just have to read between the lines and infer from context like an animal

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ksheep View Post
    Their lack of ability to pick up on social cues would also make them very easy marks for con men, as they couldn't tell when someone is lying, even if the lies are VERY obvious.
    Quote Originally Posted by AuraTwilight View Post
    Charisma represents your force of personality and ability to assert yourself as an entity. A person of Charisma 3 is effectively at the bare minimum for creaturehood and is probably easy to manipulate.
    Aren't these more a feature of Wisdom? Sense Motive detects lies, and Will saves are generally the first defense against manipulation effects. An easily manipulated person would probably have low Wisdom, but may still have high Charisma.

    Similarly...
    Quote Originally Posted by Mastergilgamesh View Post
    The way I look at it is that with the non-physical Attributes, (WIS, INT, CHA), 3 is barely human, mostly animal. someone with a charisma of 3? You'd have to train them and lead them around on a leash, or they'd attack people they don't like, take things they want, and talk like a barbarian or just in growls.
    This basically sounds like an animal. But even animals, in 3.5 at least, have a Charisma of 6. I'm pretty sure that kind of behaviour would be more attributable to low intellegence than charisma.

    If you want to know what a low charisma means, it's probably best to look at the game mechanics that it affects. It's tied to skills that involve influencing other people, so it follows that a low Charisma means you have next to no ability to influence others. Why this might be likely varies from person to person, but there's got to be more to it than language skills and behaviour because again, even animals have 6 charisma.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I'm annoyed by people who say that he'd basically be an animal, that he'd have to be trained or leashed. Why? A 3 is as likely as an 18, by the normal distribution. Is someone with an 18 in their intelligence or charisma so otherworldly they can not connect with normal people on a meaningful level? No. Neither is someone with a 3 a barely-coherent animal.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    I'm annoyed by people who say that he'd basically be an animal, that he'd have to be trained or leashed. Why? A 3 is as likely as an 18, by the normal distribution. Is someone with an 18 in their intelligence or charisma so otherworldly they can not connect with normal people on a meaningful level? No. Neither is someone with a 3 a barely-coherent animal.
    As the person who said that, I think you guys are misinterpreting my statement. I was saying that his Charisma would be roughly analogous to an animal's intelligence, since intelligence is easier to measure and understand conceptually while Charisma is extremely difficult and is often subject to vast changes in understanding from writer to writer (even in the same system). I was trying to create an analog for the charisma to a stat that's easier to understand..

    Also very few (I think no) animals have a Charisma that low either.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    They're not animals, they're vermin.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I'd play someone with a charisma score that low like Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory.

    You'd have no understanding of normal human dynamics, social norms would be a mystery to you and would have to be a learned response (if you could be bothered) rather than coming to you normally.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    A Charisma of 3? The person is rude and abusive to everyone they meet, is likely vain and egotistical, completely non-empathic and blind to other people's feelings, they would have no social standing at all, and no physical presence to intimidate people into doing their bidding. And if they do have a follower/henchman, they may well have an abusive relationship .

    And while I'm loathe to tie physical looks into the charisma stat (someone physically attractive may still have low charisma due to their inter-personal skills and vice versa), they may also possibly have things like facial tattoos that cause other people to view them with disdain. But, IMO, such things would probably be situational modifiers - tribal facial tattoos might give minus in large cities or to the tribes enemies, but would be beneficial within the tribe themselves or their allies, especially if they're a sign of rank within those groups.
    Last edited by Storm_Of_Snow; 2014-03-05 at 08:01 AM.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    I'm annoyed by people who say that he'd basically be an animal, that he'd have to be trained or leashed. Why? A 3 is as likely as an 18, by the normal distribution. Is someone with an 18 in their intelligence or charisma so otherworldly they can not connect with normal people on a meaningful level? No. Neither is someone with a 3 a barely-coherent animal.
    A character with 3 in intelligence would be closer to chimps and dolphins (and maybe ravens?) than an average human.

    Likewise from an 18's intelligence perspective the difference between them and other people is almost as big as other people and intelligent animals.

    Charisma on the other hand would always make it easier to connect with people no matter how high it got. I expect someone with 18 charisma would very easily deal with anyone and always get their way, someone with 3 would be either universally hated or (more likely) totally ignored and have no friends. It probably wouldn't occur to a 3-charisma to keep in touch with your friends.

    Other than being mental stats intelligence and charisma are extremely different.

    Edit- I suck at spelling.
    Last edited by Mastikator; 2014-03-05 at 09:03 AM.
    Black text is for sarcasm, also sincerity. You'll just have to read between the lines and infer from context like an animal

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    It will vary a little by which D&D you are using. But the core of low Charisma is that you are unlikeable, and do poorly when it comes to trying to motivate or influence others. It's not a lack of sense of self, it's a lack of ability to impose your will on another. You could be an abhorrent slob with no social graces and a face a dog would bury, or you could be a nebbishy wallflower with a quiet voice and unremarkable looks.

    Paired with low wisdom, you're looking at a lack of common sense, and/or willpower, and/or awareness of the world around them (again, depending on editions). This is where "easily manipulated" may come into play.

    These are good stats for a lackey (but not a toady). You may have your own goals and motives, but easily bend to another's desires.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by geeky_monkey View Post
    I'd play someone with a charisma score that low like Sheldon Cooper from The Big Bang Theory.

    You'd have no understanding of normal human dynamics, social norms would be a mystery to you and would have to be a learned response (if you could be bothered) rather than coming to you normally.
    With a Charisma of 3 I'd see someone more like Tarzan than Sheldon.

    Sheldon by all means has low charisma but is high enough that he regularly wins arguments, makes snappy comebacks and understands basic social norms, Sheldon is just more likely to act like a child when he doesn't get his way. This strikes me as more around 6 or 7 a little bit below the 10 baseline and just under the acceptable 8 in a basic array. A 6-7 is a reasonable Charisma for a commoner child seeing as their not fully developed.

    A character with 3 charisma though lacks social skills we'd expect and doesn't understand things like Sarcasm, manners and by RAW suffers huge penalties to intimidation and negotiation, We also know 3 charisma is a more common in animals. This makes me think of how Tarzan interacts with Jane, a more bliss stance to the Human social skills while he does understand his ape social skills.
    Last edited by DrBurr; 2014-03-05 at 10:26 AM.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I've always seen Charisma as the more offensive mental stat - that is, the outgoing force of personality, as opposed to the stabilizing force (e.g. Wis). Thus, a person with low Charisma either has little outgoing force of personality, or it is negative, or they haven't much visible personality to speak of.

    This means that people are unlikely to pay attention to you when you want them to, or in the manner in which you want them to. They will notice you when you want to be unnoticed, take offense when you want to be polite, and disregard you when you insist on urgency. They will think you're joking when you're serious, and take you far too seriously when you make a joke. They will find you un-funny and unappealing. They will shun you if they can, and ignore you if they cannot.

    Consider, for example, that a common housecat has Charisma 7. The little buggers are adorable. However, they have less force of personality than an average human. A cat may be able to get you to do things by gnawing on your leg, or giving you the eyes, or mewling pitifully, or typing in broken English, but it can't make an argument that compels you to act. This of course has nothing to do with its inability to speak.

    Cha 3 has a fraction of that force of personality. You couldn't convince a drunk to relieve himself if his bladder were overflowing.

    When people refer to Cha 0 being "catatonic," I rule that as having so little force of personality that the character basically ceases to exercise any influence on the world around him. Even an insect has enough personality to act on things; a creature with 0 Charisma simply lacks the agency, the self-governance, to impose his will on the world, because he lacks the outgoing will to impose.

    The awkward thing about Cha is how readily it mixes with Wis. It's very hard, for example, to visualize a character with low Cha but high Wis, particularly given how the concept of personality overlaps between the two. (Dr. Sheldon Cooper is an exception, but it can be argued that despite his social awkwardness, he has a very high Cha, as he is able to consistently impose his will on others.) It's much easier to imagine that both Int and Wis are low, and that therefore a person isn't much of a person at all, at least in terms of a person's personality being personable.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Owls are Cha 4, Crocodiles, lizards, sharks etc Cha 2, and octopi Cha 3.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Storm_Of_Snow View Post
    is likely vain and egotistical
    Unrelated to Charisma.


    completely non-empathic and blind to other people's feelings
    Charisma =/= Wisdom.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post

    The awkward thing about Cha is how readily it mixes with Wis. It's very hard, for example, to visualize a character with low Cha but high Wis, particularly given how the concept of personality overlaps between the two.
    It's very common for animals though - low WIS is rarer than low CHA for them, I think.

    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/theBasics.htm#theAbilities

    Wisdom (Wis)
    Wisdom describes a character’s willpower, common sense, perception, and intuition. While Intelligence represents one’s ability to analyze information, Wisdom represents being in tune with and aware of one’s surroundings.

    Charisma (Cha)
    Charisma measures a character’s force of personality, persuasiveness, personal magnetism, ability to lead, and physical attractiveness. This ability represents actual strength of personality, not merely how one is perceived by others in a social setting.


    It's possible that most animals have to "be in tune with and aware of their surroundings" to hunt and to avoid hunters.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Charisma measures a character’s force of personality, persuasiveness, personal magnetism, ability to lead, and physical attractiveness.

    I find it amusing that people are avoiding the last part of the definition of Charisma.

    Yes, all of the above when it comes to force of personality, but I am sorry if you have a 3 in your charisma score, you are terribly ugly (by the majority of societies standards, possible physical defect etc).

    So no "Sheldon" would not be a Charisma 3, because he isn't ugly to the point of being off putting.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I figure it's much less important - since there are numerous "ugly" monsters with high charisma, it seems logical that there can be numerous "attractive" people with low charisma.
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    I figure it's much less important - since there are numerous "ugly" monsters with high charisma, it seems logical that there can be numerous "attractive" people with low charisma.
    Not sure if that is applicable. Most races will find other races to be less attractive (to an extent, there are always exceptions), so saying that a monster is "ugly" to a PC race but has high charisma doesn't necessarily mean anything.

    Also it isn't less important, because there are people in this world who simply don't take "ugly" people are serious as they do attractive people. (Hence why it affects your ability to deal with others)

    The point being though, is that if you have a very low charisma score (3, not 7 or 6, but 3) chances are you are ugly. At what degree you are ugly is debatable.

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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    Maybe we could dig through the splatbooks with statted characters - to see if there are any with unusually low Cha and what those look like?
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    Default Re: [D&D] What does a Charisma score of 3 mean?

    I submit that if you take Charisma to solely mean appearance, then a 3 would equate to someone who looks like Nobby Nobbs.

    http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.ph...worldCityWatch

    However, as noted that Corporal Nobbs can get along with everyone, so his actually D&D charisma score would be higher than that.

    The flip side of the coin on the Discworld would be someone like Verence of Lancre, who is described as a ruler who "is trying to improve the country through political and social reforms. The people of Lancre politely listen to his suggestions and then ignore him and keep doing what they've always done." He looks appropriately kingly, but the force of personality is lacking. I'd peg him with a Charisma of 5 or so, but it could easily be lower.

    Since what charisma actually means tends to be the source of many D&D debates, witness this thread, I like the idea of breaking it out into two different stats, say Charisma and Comeliness, so you can properly express physical appearance and the ability to get people to do what you want them to without getting tangled up in the 'But how does someone who looks like a cross between a chimpanzee and a goblin convince the barkeep to give him a free beer?'
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