You understand the people and systems that make civilization run, and you know the historical events that make societies what they are today. Further, you can use that knowledge to navigate the complex physical, societal, and economic workings of settlements. Even if you’re untrained in Society, you can use it for the following general skill actions.
Recall Knowledge about local history, important personalities, legal institutions, societal structure, and humanoid cultures. The GM might allow Society to apply to other creatures that are major elements of society in your region, such as the draconic nobility in a kingdom of humans ruled by dragons.
Subsist in a settlement by finding shelter, scrounging, or begging for food.
SOCIETY UNTRAINED ACTIONS
You attempt a skill check to try to remember a bit of knowledge regarding a topic related to that skill. The GM determines the DCs for such checks and which skills apply.
The following skills can be used to Recall Knowledge, getting information about the listed topics. In some cases, you can get the GM's permission to use a different but related skill, usually against a higher DC than normal. Some topics might appear on multiple lists, but the skills could give different information. For example, Arcana might tell you about the magical defenses of a golem, whereas Crafting could tell you about its sturdy resistance to physical attacks.
- Arcana: Arcane theories, magical traditions, creatures of arcane significance, and arcane planes.
- Crafting: Alchemical reactions and creatures, item value, engineering, unusual materials, and constructs.
- Lore: The subject of the Lore skill's subcategory.
- Medicine: Diseases, poisons, wounds, and forensics.
- Nature: The environment, flora, geography, weather, creatures of natural origin, and natural planes.
- Occultism: Ancient mysteries, obscure philosophy, creatures of occult significance, and esoteric planes.
- Religion: Divine agents, divine planes, theology, obscure myths, and creatures of religious significance.
- Society: Local history, key personalities, legal institutions, societal structure, and humanoid culture.
The GM might allow checks to Recall Knowledge using other skills. For example, you might assess the skill of an acrobat using Acrobatics. If you're using a physical skill (like in this example), the GM will most likely have you use a mental ability score—typically Intelligence—instead of the skill's normal physical ability score.
Critical Success You recall the knowledge accurately and gain additional information or context.
Success You recall the knowledge accurately or gain a useful clue about your current situation.
Critical Failure You recall incorrect information or gain an erroneous or misleading clue.
Sample Recall Knowledge TasksThese examples use Society or Religion.
Untrained name of a ruler, key noble, or major deity
Trained line of succession for a major noble family, core doctrines of a major deity
Expert genealogy of a minor noble, teachings of an ancient priest
Master hierarchy of a genie noble court, major extraplanar temples of a deity
Legendary existence of a long-lost noble heir, secret doctrines of a religion
Source Core Rulebook pg. 239
You try to provide food and shelter for yourself, and possibly others as well, with a standard of living described on page 294. The GM determines the DC based on the Nature of the place where you're trying to Subsist. You might need a minimum proficiency rank to Subsist in particularly strange environments. Unlike most downtime activities, you can Subsist after 8 hours or less of exploration, but if you do, you take a -5 penalty.
Critical Success You either provide a subsistence living for yourself and one additional creature, or you improve your own food and shelter, granting yourself a comfortable living.
Success You find enough food and shelter with basic protection from the elements to provide you a subsistence living.
Failure You're exposed to the elements and don't get enough food, becoming Fatigued until you attain sufficient food and shelter.
Critical Failure You attract trouble, eat something you shouldn't, or otherwise worsen your situation. You take a -2 circumstance penalty to checks to Subsist for 1 week. You don't find any food at all; if you don't have any stored up, you're in danger of starving or Dying of thirst if you continue failing.
Sample Subsist TasksUntrained lush forest with calm weather or large city with plentiful resources
Trained typical hillside or village
Expert typical mountains or insular hamlet
Master typical desert or city under siege
Legendary barren wasteland or city of undead
Source Core Rulebook pg. 240
SOCIETY TRAINED ACTIONSDecipher Writing that’s a coded message, text written in an incomplete or archaic form, or in some cases, text in a language you don’t know.
Concentrate Exploration Secret
You attempt to decipher complicated writing or literature on an obscure topic. This usually takes 1 minute per page of text, but might take longer (typically an hour per page for decrypting ciphers or the like). The text must be in a language you can read, though the GM might allow you to attempt to decipher text written in an unfamiliar language using Society instead.
The DC is determined by the GM based on the state or complexity of the document. The GM might have you roll one check for a short text or a check for each section of a larger text.
Critical Success You understand the true meaning of the text.
Success You understand the true meaning of the text. If it was a coded document, you know the general meaning but might not have a word-for-word translation.
Failure You can't understand the text and take a -2 circumstance penalty to further checks to decipher it.
Critical Failure You believe you understand the text on that page, but you have in fact misconstrued its message.
Sample Decipher Writing TasksTrained entry-level philosophy treatise
Expert complex code, such as a cipher
Master spymaster's code or advanced research notes
Legendary esoteric planar text written in metaphor by an ancient celestial
Source Core Rulebook pg. 234
You create a forged document, usually over the course of a day or a week. You must have the proper writing material to create a forgery. When you Create a Forgery, the GM rolls a secret DC 20 Society check. If you succeed, the forgery is of good enough quality that passive observers can't notice the fake. Only those who carefully examine the document and attempt a Perception or Society check against your Society DC can do so.
If the document's handwriting doesn't need to be specific to a person, you need only to have seen a similar document before, and you gain up to a +4 circumstance bonus to your check, as well as to your DC (the GM determines the bonus). To forge a specific person's handwriting, you need a sample of that person's handwriting.
If your check result was below 20, the forgery has some obvious signs of being a fake, so the GM compares your result to each passive observer's Perception DC or Society DC, whichever is higher, using the success or failure results below. Once the GM rolls your check for a document, that same result is used against all passive observers' DCs no matter how many creatures passively observe that document.
An observer who was fooled on a passive glance can still choose to closely scrutinize the documents on the lookout for a forgery, using different techniques and analysis methods beyond the surface elements you successfully forged with your original check. In that case, the observer can attempt a Perception or Society check against your Society DC (if they succeed, they know your document is a forgery).
Critical Success None
Success The observer does not detect the forgery.
Failure The observer knows your document is a forgery.
Source Core Rulebook pg. 251