Veteran Advances

I’m very sorry if this is either a question that has been answered elsewhere on the forum or not appropriate for this board. The only answers I could find elsewhere on the Internet were second-hand/opinion rather than official rulings, and linked to G+ posts that are sadly no longer available since G+ closing.

Veteran advances are listed in the playbooks but not explained in the Blades book. They allow you to ‘choose a special ability from another source’ and have three boxes. The Internet consensus seems to be that this represents three opportunities to buy a move from another playbook for the same cost as a move from your own playbook (which makes sense as an interpretation, as the Hound has two dots to represent taking Ghost Hunter multiple times).

Nothing in the book specifies whether there are requirements for choosing these advances, but the name ‘Veteran’ suggests that they are intended for play later in the game.

Has there been any official clarification of these rules that is still online?


The Veteran advances are just a placeholder for taking other special abilities out of scope of your playbook. But still I would imagine that learning some specific ability from other playbook or i.e. Iruvian Martial Art style would require some fictional positioning like a proper teacher. These are your actual requirements. From mechanical point of view, I think there is no need for any other requirements than having enough xp to buy the advance.


John has also confirmed that veteran advances are not limited to three, that was simply what was convenient to fit on the sheet.

– Ben


Officially there is no limit, you can take a Veteran special ability at any time (even charater/crew creation) and as many as you want.

If your group wants they can come up with a house rule. Mine decided to only allow Tier+3 so that there was some cohesion with the Playbooks and Crew.

It’s weird that we forgot to mention it in the book. Oh well! There’s no particular limit on Veteran advances – they’re the same as any other. The Veteran system reveals how there are no specific playbooks in Blades, but rather everyone is a Scoundrel each specializing in some area, but not constrained to it.


Because all special abilities may be veteran abilities from other playbook (even the first one) and because there is no limit on the number of veteran abilities, my advice to players is always NOT to pick the playbook because of special abilities but because of XP triggers and maybe special items.
Does work most of the times but needs some explaining to newer players.


I love that even though Blades technically has no specific playbooks, it still shows how important playbooks are to the poetry of the game


Thank you so much for the clarifications, folks! My group really appreciates it. As will my Lurk-Slide-Spider when I get round to taking some non-Lurk advances on him!

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Please tell me more about this some examples