*The usage of Thu’um (“Shouting”) is a Supernatural Ability.
*Verbal component: As Thu’ums (“Shouts”) require the ability to speak, they can’t be used in areas of Silence or if the user is otherwise prevented from speaking (such as being gagged).
*Each Shout is divided into divided into three Words of Power. Uttering the first Word typically requires a swift action, and does not provoke Attacks of Opportunity. Uttering two words typically requires a move action, and provokes Attacks of Opportunity unless stated otherwise.. Uttering all three words typically requires a full round action, and provokes Attacks of Opportunity unless stated otherwise.
*Words of Power: In order to acquire a Shout, you must first learn the appropriate Word of Power. The process is quite simple; you must stand next to an inscription of a Word of Power and meditate on it for a full round. Doing so will allow you to absorb the knowledge of the Word.
Again, each Shout is divided into three Words: knowing one of the words does not give you knowledge of the others.
For example, if a character learned just the Word “Yol” in the Fire Breath Shout, he would not simultaneously gain the knowledge of the Words “Toor” and “Shul”.
*Only certain inscriptions imbued with draconic power will grant you the understanding required for a Shout, however. Even if someone knows draconic well enough to write it, the inscription itself must have gathered centuries’ worth of draconic power for it to convey it to a person.
*Only certain beings can use this method to learn Words of Power, as well; namely, those whose mortal flesh contains the soul of a dragon—Dragonborn. To anyone else, the inscription bearing a Word of Power are mere writings on the wall.
*Unlocking a Word of Power: Knowledge of a Word of Power is not sufficient to use it to its full potential. One a Word of Power is known, you can unlock its power for your own use in two ways:
Meditation. Afters years of meditation on a Word under the guide of wise mentors, you can begin to use it. This typically requires all of one’s time, however, leaving little room for anything else.
*Dragon Souls: All Dragons have an innate knowledge of Thu’um. Certain beings (namely Dragonborn) can absorb the soul of a slain Dragon to gain some of that power. Each Dragon soul absorbed in this way can be used at any time to unlock one Word of Power that you already know.
For example, if a character knew the Words “Yol” and “Toor” from the Shout Fire Breath without having unlocked either of them, and then used the power from an absorbed Dragon Soul to unlock “Yol”, then he does not simultaneously unlock “Toor” even though he knows them both. He would need another Dragon Soul to unlock “Toor”.
Even if you know several Words in a single Shout, you must unlock the Words in a Shout sequentially.
For example, if a character knew the Words “Yol” and “Toor” in the Thu’um Fire Breath without having unlocked either of them, and wanted to unlock “Toor”, then he must first unlock “Yol” in order to unlock “Toor”. Likewise, if a character knew the Words “Yol”, “Toor”, and “Shul” in the Thu’um Fire Breath without having unlocked any of them, and wanted to unlock “Shul”, then must first unlock “Yol” and “Toor” before unlocking “Shul”.
*As their name suggests, most Shouts are not quiet; aside from whatever effects they may have, the Shout themselves are as loud as a person screaming at the top of their lungs. Certain shouts may end up being even louder due to the nature of their effects.
*After using a Thu’um, user cannot Shout again until the specified recharge time as passed.
For example, if a person Utters two words in the Unrelenting Force Shout, then he cannot use any Thu’um again until 8 rounds have passed.
*The save DCs for Shouts (“Shout DC”) are equal to 10 + 1 ½ character level rounded up of the Thu’um’s user.
For example, the save DC for a Shout used by a level 4 Fighter would be 16 (10 + 6).
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