Which Codex Skills Are Stock-Restricted?

Been poring through the Codex and I’m a little confused about skills. They’re all listed in the various lifepath sections, but some of them feel universally applicable. Are some of these completely restricted by stock? Are some of them just limited to character burning (i.e. they can be learned by a character of any stock during play)?

Skills in the Wizard Burner section:
Death Art
Spirit Binding

Skills in the Roden section:

Skills in the Troll section:

Skills in the Great Wolf section:
Ancient Ways
Combat Mount
Escape Artist
Nature of All Things
Pack Hunting
Pack Etiquette
Rider Training
Savage Attack
Scent Tracking
Tongue of the Ancient One
Way of the First Hunter

The skills in a stock chapter (including Dark Elves) are limited to that stock.

The Wizard Burner skills are mostly in BWG, plus most of them require the Gifted trait.

That’s not entirely true, though. For example, Dark Elves, Orcs, and Roden have lifepaths which gift them the Garrote skill and that’s listed under Roden. That suggests to me that anyone can learn Garrote. The other skills in the Roden section, Preaching and Firebombs, also seem to be the kind of skills that would be limited to Roden in character burning but acquirable by anyone during play. Would it really make sense to say that a Faithful human couldn’t learn Preaching? Or a Dwarf artificer couldn’t learn how to make a firebomb? The Troll and Great Wolf skills I can understand being restricted to just their stocks (even though I wish such restriction were explicitly stated), but can’t Roden dabble in Wizard-y things? They can learn Spirit Binding, right; so does that mean they can also learn Circination?

Basically, some of these skills seem like they would be totally restricted to a stock, some seem like they would only be restricted during character burning, and some are ambiguous. The restrictions are not explicit as far as I can tell and that’s what I’m looking for.

This covers mainly magical skills, posted shortly after the old Magic Burner came out: https://www.burningwheel.com/forum/showthread.php?6445-Who-Can-Use-What

Could answer some of your questions.

Perhaps Topi will correct me here, but I believe we were very particular about including available skills in each stock, while the Character Burner skill list represents the General list.

I understand the impulse to make every skill available to every stock—or even to the ones that “make sense”—but I assure you it makes for a less interesting game and world.


PS FWIW, Roden Albinos can learn Sorcery and Spirit Binding.

So unless there’s a lifepath that specifically gifts the skill, I should just assume that it’s restricted to the stock it’s listed under? So for example, only Great Wolves get Escape Artist except for the Dark Elf Assassin and the Human Death Cult Harem Slave?

You could extrapolate a step further and count is as general for the stock if it appears on a lifepath (since there’s no specific skill restriction that says otherwise).
So if it appears on a lifepath, you can buy it with normal skill points.
If it appears in your stock, but you didn’t take that lifepath, you can buy it with general points.

Okay yeah that makes sense. Thanks, Luke!

My pleasure. Sorry for the confusion. This got overlooked and should be stated in the skills section of the Codex.

Houdini was an escape artist, many soldiers through out history have used camouflage, hunters too.

Humans have an infuriating way of adapting to learn how to imitate the skills they need to survive.

Hunters do use camouflage, the Stealthy skill includes the ability to use camouflage, it just has a small “C” in their case.

Houdini, I would argue, is a good example of a specific person who devoted their life to pursuit of a particular skillset, which is badly emulated by Lifepaths (in general, such amazing devotion and danger come after character creation). If it were a more natural ability for humans to pick up, it would be less astounding.

What about Elves? What historical infuriating survival tendencies have they developed?

How about meeples?

I think you get my point. It’s a game; it’s not real life. The restrictions are part of the design of the game.

I suppose that Eric Weiss could probably be burned up as a city born, apprentice, journyman, performer who took the alias of Houdini when he started his career.
But there can be no doubt that he was an escape artist, he could have an Escape Artist Die Trait, Affinity for Lockpicking, or be Driven to be the best escape artist in the world.

And there are always other skills to be used in Burning Wheel.

The wolves “Escape Artist” demonstrates their ability to get out of cages, snares, traps, what have you.
While a human uses skills such as Knots, and Lock Pick, with FoRKS from various associated skills.

Similar to how Bill Turner wasn’t a Locksmith or an escape artist, but he was able to use his knowledge and skills as a Blacksmith to free Captain Jack Sparrow from his cell in the first “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie.

And even though we can model fictional races by their fictional narratives the way we use historical and fictional sources for humans, it is always important to look at what the skill does in game context instead of what the name of the skill might imply in the real world sense.