About the rules for creating new strife's.
Could you go into why the rules require that a play needs to spend a full 4 levels doing nothing but building a new strife? The 16 dominion requirement means you can't get it before lvl 4 and then it takes another 4 levels to learn, which even at a fast progression rate would take 28 sessions, each level seeing you weaker and weaker then your companions. Furthermore, you can't start any later than lvl 6, or you'll never complete the strife.
It seems kinda clunky in an otherwise very smooth system.
It costs 8 gift points to develop a new True Strife, after which you're refunded 4. If you know at first level that you want to develop and master an entirely new True Strife, you spend your first 4 levels doing so, which is fairly fast in sessions if you use the default XP, and just save your gift points. You buy 6 points worth as soon as you invent it, spend a level mastering it, and buy the last of it when you hit level 5, getting a 4 point refund at the same time.
Creating a new True Strife is meant to be The Big Thing the PC Does. It's more significant in many ways than creating a custom Word because it creates something that mortals anywhere can participate in via the Lesser Strife and have a much more practical chance of attaining true mastery in than they would of an actual Word of Creation. If a PC hasn't figured out they want to do it by level 6, well, they're going to need to talk to the GM and work something out that lets them eventually trade in some of their existing gifts.
And as a postscript, I also made it such a major up-front drag because I don't want GMs to have to deal with the substantial work of developing the Strife unless the player was really willing to work for it and wasn't doing it just for easy optimization points.
Do you only need to spend the 16 dominion when you finish learning the strife then? Otherwise, is the character supposed to stay at lvl 1 until they save up 16 dominion?
Sorry, I'm just trying to understand how it's supposed to work here. I was planning to let a player design a wealth based strife and I'm trying to work out how this should work.
You can spend it as you earn it to justify leveling up, just as with any other large-scale Dominion project.
I must beg you to clarify: you're saying that you can pre-commit Effort to level up so long as the commitment is known ahead of time?
Making a change doesn't state exactly when the expenditure must take place; however, creating an Artifact does tell you that you must commit the Dominion once the process is wholly finished, or rather—at the end.
Can you also pre-commit Dominion to crafting an Artifact ahead of time, permitting you to level up along the way?
The goal of the Dominion spend requirements is to goad the PC into doing Something Big with their divine powers. If they're doing Something Big, then the job is being accomplished, so it is okay to let them spend as they go. I'd let them spend-as-they-go for an artifact if it was some big and important artifact to them, the same way I'd let them spend as they go if it was some big and important Dominion change they were enacting.