In the relaunched Forgotten Realms, gamers are going to see plenty of cool, quirky, Realms-specific feats, skills, and other "rules stuff." But I'd like to focus for a moment on some of the "Realms bedrock" -- one of the quieter, more pedestrian game elements that almost every PC begins with (which is why we touched on them in the first Realmswatch): Regional Feats.
These innovations make "being from somewhere" really mean something. In short, a Realms character that hails from Calimshan or the Dalelands or the North will have specific characteristics that flow from being native to that locale.
Such as? Well, Cosmopolitan, a feat that all large-city-dwelling PCs might have. I don't want to spoil the fun by revealing too many secrets, but you can probably guess that this feat might involve being tolerant of noise and crowding and strange visitors and neighbors of many races, possibly also resistance to passing colds and diseases, and some facility with local cants, a smattering of many languages, and intrigues. Maybe it means other things instead -- but then, a Dungeon Master could expand the basic feat given in all of these directions to tailor it to individual campaign needs.
Player characters from elsewhere will instead have such feats as Discipline, or Strong Soul, or (if Calishites
this one's particularly cool) Bloodline of Fire. (What's that all about? Well, I'm teasing right now rather than setting forth rules, but think of the history of the region, and efreet, and go from there...)
This is just the starting background color that makes the Realms a setting that feels alive. Just think of the rules fun involved in all of the spells!
(Realmswatch Home Page)