So by now everyone who has been reading these articles should have a fair idea of the world. I have only this article and one other planned for the series, because if I put it all together for you it would be a 200 plus page world book. 🙂 Not that the idea is a bad one, but I really don’t have the time to put it together get it edited and sell it to a publisher right now. So then what does that make this article in world building about… POWER.
Yes thats right, power, well that and the classes that use them. You see in every fantasy game there are things that set characters apart from the every day Joe Blowstone and while high skills and hit points are great, the POWER that comes with those things is even better.
So lets talk about them in the game setting BASE classes shall we?
Clerics / Druids – Channels of the HOLY POWERs. Thats right these folks talk to the GODS, and get power accordingly. Notice this will not include Paladins as I think they are insanely hard to play and kill game balance. Now then in most game settings a holy power user is dedicated to one god or force of nature and that fuels what they do. In this world I plan on taking a different approach. Each one of the gods has its own portfolio of powers and so a holy power user has to know which god to invoke, and must stay on fairly good terms with all of them in order to cast all the spells available. While every cleric type will have their favorite (and that is how they get domain powers and such) they need to worship the whole pantheon. What this also means is that with undead being non-existent at the start of the meta story the Turn Rebuke power is something that no one would have.
Magic Users (Wizards / Sorcerer / Bard) – Yes there are sorcerers and they have bloodline powers, but many of the ones listed in the original rules do not exist as this world does not have fae, demons, angels and so on. Wizards and others who rely on spell books prove that you dont need a blood line and that just about anyone with a little practice can learn magic. Unfortunately learning magic requires just as much grunt work and also writing and reading and understanding weird as hell combinations of words and gestures that most who try it rarely make it to level one, let alone further. This is why you end up with odd smatterings of low effect magic items in places like farms and inns.
Chi / Rage and style powers (Monk / Barbarian / Ranger / Rouge / Bard) – Most of these are from focus and effort. Again there are a lot of folks that dont have the patience or the talent to really pursue them. This also means that there are more than a few folks out there in very basic roles that may have scampered off with books of martial art styles, know a move or two that takes focus and maybe could rage for a few seconds and so on.
Just plain Skill (Fighter / Rouge / Bard) – Raw skill is never a problem. Although a high level rouge can do just about anything they set their mind to. Just once though I would love to see a high level character who has been keeping a skill up in Shepard or Farming for the day they retire. Oh and word of advice, never trust a rouge that keeps up a skill in carpentry or ditch digging… seriously…
Non Base class powers and combinations
Technology vs Alchemy (Alchemist / Gunslinger / Swashbuckler) – So technology in this world is rather low. So there are no guns and even siege weapons are rare. Running water comes from many people using buckets to pour water over something. So this means that there are no ‘Gunslingers’ or Swashbucklers as written. However if someone wants to use those classes but with hand crossbows, that could work. Alchemy is sort of pervasive though. Or at least it looks that way to non-practitioners. Say it with me now, snake oil salesmen. Yup. Alchemy is known as being a great way to fix tons of things. Can you think of a better ongoing con? For every actually skilled Alchemist in this world there are likely ten to fifteen snake oil salesmen.
Psionics – I really debated adding this power set into the game setting or not. For games that start in the begining of the meta storyline, no psi. About a third of the way through the meta plot I have in mind Psi can be added.
Cultural (Samurai / Ninja / Swashbuckler) So while they have a mix of powers and skills, These three are kinda right out.
Others that really dont fit the world – PALADIN (sorry but I have to say it many times, just like that thing with gno… ) Cavalier, Oracle, Summoner, Witch, Kineticist, Medium, Mesmerist, Occultist, Psychic, Spiritualist, Bloodrager, Slayer, Samurai, Ninja, Swashbuckler, and War Priest.
Others that do fit – Arcanist, Brawler, Hunter, Investigator, Magus, Shaman, and Skald
Why do they or dont they fit… well…
Cultural (Samurai / Ninja / Swashbuckler) So while they have a mix of powers and skills, the cultures in this world really do not support the character arch-types completely. These three are mostly out. Cases can be made that with the stereotypes in the dwarven community that both Samurai and Ninja could abound. However the culture of the dwarves would more likely mean that someone studies to be a fighter and something else… two… classes… 🙂
Mixed power sets and classes that really don’t fit the setting…
So with base classes like the Ranger, you get a combination of fighting and spell casting dedicated to nature. And this works. Bards mix a ton of things together and they work. Some of the more unique power sets from advanced classes though, like the Summoner, don’t really work in this world. Mostly because there is very little out there to summon, and that would raise the question about why don’t the Titans just follow that hole and then… yeah… it gets ugly. And why do things like Oracles and Witches not work, but as written the Shaman (which mixes both classes) does work. That stems from the focus of the abilities. Shamans deal with spirits. Oracles work with Gods and monsters. Which is why this article is from the perspective of players… they should also know that Witches will be present, as mortals who serve the Titans. That’s right the Gods get Clerics the Titans get Witches.
With the elements that are not present, you can take a look culturally and see things like the Ninja just not really being there. Since the main seafaring culture is the elves and greatships and piracy are not their thing then swashbucklers are kind of out. No guns so no gunslingers. Oracles and Paladins in essence turn themselves over to A god. And at this time there is no one in the world that has faith of that magnitude in any SINGLE god to make that happen.
With the ones that do work, you can see a lot about the game setting.
Dwarves take their religion as a whole rather seriously. And so they have Inquisitor / Investigator pairs that search for heresy and lack of faith. Clerics that teach. And then Rouges that master oh so many skills, and Bards that teach them how to party when all is good. Humans with their connection to nature and deep reliance on themselves have Barbarians, Monks, Brawlers and Rangers in equal parts. Sorcerers, Wizards, Arcanists, Magus and Alchemists run a lot of the show in Goblin communities. Halflings with their love of life and travel see Bards, Skalds, Hunters, Rouges and Rangers fill many of their jobs. And with the Elves love of nature and life they have many Bards, Druids, Rangers, Hunters and Rouges. Now then you notice I did not mention Fighters in there. Thats because every culture has fighters. Well actually every culture has all of the classes, but look at the highlights and see where the POWER lies.
Thats right I came back to the POWER there at the end. Because POWER is not just the magic or the chi. Its not just the skills and the stats. POWER is having a great character that you have fun playing… HAH!!!
Ok so as random as that all seemed. I am out…
Gimme the dice I need to roll a crit hit on fun with the wife… my wife.. the best wife ever… (she thought I would not leave that in when she typed it while I was AFK)
Peace and fun to all y’all.