A farmer's youngest son discovers an old sword hidden in the hay loft and sets out to find his missing father. A feral waif watches a group of thugs shake down an old man and vows to make them pay. A bookish youth is admitted to the Black Tower to learn the 7 truths and the 10 lies that allow the talented to bind the magical currents of the world. A nobleman's daughter takes the vows of the order of The Watchful Sisters and sets out on the pilgrimage road to protect the faithful from the evils of the world.
The players' characters are the roles they play in Chronicle. Character cards carry all of the information needed to play a character.
A warrior puts all of his strength into one final blow to dispatch a murderous orc. A thief pits her dexterous fingers against the cold precision of a trap's triggering mechanism. A character's skills are one of the things that set them apart from normal people, and other characters. There are six different skills: strength, dexterity, constitution, intelligence, wisdom, and charisma. When a character needs to make a skill check (to disarm a trap, evade a monster, etc.) the player rolls two six sided dice. If the roll is higher than the difficulty of the check the character succeeds. Each character has three skills. The top skill is the character's class skill. The class skill shows a black die and indicates the skill that the character has mastered. When the character makes a skill check using his class skill the character adds a third die to the skill check. The other two skills show a white die and indicate skills in which the character has training, but has not mastered. When making a skill check using a trained skill the player also rolls a white die that can be substituted for one of the two skill check dice.
A dwarven warrior walks away from battle with wounds that would have killed any human soldier. A warrior's blade finds a weak spot in a hobgoblin's armor, ending the monster's threat forever. A thief weaves her way through attack after attack, her dextrous steps taking her out of harm's way. Each character has three combat scores: hit points, attack, and armor class. A character's combat scores are an indication of how effective a character is in armed combat. Hit points are a measure of how hard it is to harm a character. Hit points increase each turn as character's gain experience. If a character is reduced to zero hit points she must miss a turn healing before continuing her travels. When a character fights a round of combat her attack dice are added to the attack roll (two six sided dice). A character's armor class dice are subtracted from her opponent's attack roll. A character's opponent also makes an attack roll. The combatant with the higher attack roll wins combat. As the game progresses characters will gain additional attack dice from weapons, henchman, etc.
A thief stills her breathing and sinks into the shadows. A magic user skirts disaster as he channels ever more power into his spell. The character classes represent a character's training in martial skill, arcane lore, divine study, or stealth and trickery. Humans are the most numerous race in Chronicle, but elves, dwarves, and halflings also produce adventurers.
A sword master executes a feint to gain advantage against his adversary. A cleric channels the healing power of her patron into the battered frame of her retainer. Characters have special class abilities. Special abilities allow characters to do extraordinary things. Special abilities can give characters extra skill dice, combat dice, or other unique abilities. Each special ability tells the player something about how to play her character, and how to tell her character's story.