Sunday, January 8, 2012

Reading Room: Adventures Dark & Deep - Player's Manual (Part 2)

My last post in this series saw several Adventures Dark & Deep character classes being evaluated and assigned common roles in my Enigmundia: Zan Lasario setting.

More Character Classes

The quintessential warrior who lives to fight and fights to live. Fighters do not possess many skills, but have the broadest ability to use weapons of all sorts, and advance in fighting skill at the fastest rate of any class.
A must-have character class, of course. But can it tackle all the different types of fighters? Particularly the fencers and the martial artists?

Barbarian (Fighter sub-class)
A man from the uncivilized lands who relies on skill and instinct to give him superior fighting skills. The barbarian has an innate distrust of all things magical, and must rise to higher levels before he can even associate with mages or other spell-casters. The barbarian is a sub-class of fighter.
Despite the potentially offensive reference to uncivilized lands, the greater concern tends to be this weird, innate distrust of all things magical. Still, it can be argued that wilderness tribesmen only trust the druids / wise men of their own tribe and mistrust all other spellcasters.

Ranger (Fighter sub-class)
A woodsman, skilled in surviving in the wilderness, tracking prey, and the like. Rangers view themselves as guardians of civilization from the perils of the wilderness, and thus all rangers must be of good alignment. They are by nature loners, however, and groups of rangers are almost never seen. At higher levels they gain some small spell-casting ability. The ranger is a sub-class of fighter.
This is actually what I'd argue would represent the native tribesmen more, leaving the Barbarians a rarer, more feared encounter. Not so sure about them being loners, but they would certainly be familiar with the perils of the wilderness.

The model caster of spells, possessed of an enormous potential repertoire of spells, some effective in offense, some in divination, and some in protection. Although they begin relatively weak compared to other classes, at higher levels the spells of the mage make them the most powerful class in the game.
Most of these would come from the colonizing population, with a smattering of mestizos in their ranks. It would be centralized instruction, to keep the foundation of national magical power strong and controlled.

Illusionist (Mage sub-class)
A specialist spell-caster who uses his magical powers to influence the minds of others. The illusionist specializes in creating visions and shadows, but as they continue to gain in power, their illusions can become real. The illusionist is a sub-class of mage.
I'd actually bring this into the Gremio Poetica grouping of classes as well -- the artists and writers and poets and performers who can make the illusory seem real. The other possibility -- it is associated with the hedge witches and perhaps a character class for the shape-changing aswang as well.

Savant (Mage sub-class)
The savant is a scholar and worker of magic whose spells are focused on divination and dealing with creatures from the other planes of existence. At higher levels, no secrets remain so from the savant. The savant is a sub-class of the mage.

This could belong to either the Inspanialo (Spaniards) or the Katao (Filipinos) or the Tsino (Chinese) who are more concerned with these types of spells. In fact, the organization of scientists / astrologists / natural philosophers would have a number of these.

The thief excels at stealth and nimbleness of hand. Whether used to steal wealth from those who cannot keep it, or to discover and disarm deadly traps, the thief’s talents are useful for going where brute force cannot take you.
I actually prefer the term rogue, or LOTFP's specialist to reflect these guys. Thief, while old school, always intimates that theft is the primary goal of this class.

Acrobat (Thief sub-class)
The acrobat is a split-class; a thief of sufficiently high level and ability scores can opt to leave the thief class and become an acrobat. The acrobat is skilled at leaping, vaulting, tightrope walking, hurling weapons, and the like.
Can be a street performer, or a more cultured member of the Arts & Culture crowd represented by the Gremio Poetica. Most are street performers who do extra work on the side.

Mountebank (Thief sub-class)
A skilled con-man, the mountebank uses his formidable talents at persuasion and misdirection to confuse enemies and marks alike. Beginning at middle levels, the mountebank gains the ability to cast magical spells, which he uses in the furtherance of his craft. The mountebank is a subclass of thief.
An interesting class, one seldom seen, that seems to add to the interesting mix of civil strata emerging in Zan Lasario, perhaps more than con artist -- they are the default class of the various guilds and traders and businessmen in Zan Lasario.


The exercise has been very instructive, though of course not all the classes don't quite fit my needs exactly. And character classes are very important, as they tend to define what PCs will tend to be in the game.

Still, some do fit quite well, and may add interesting twists to gameplay.


  1. Hey there! Sorry I just found this post on Adventures Dark and Deep. Thanks for taking the time to go into some depth on the implications of the character classes in your setting.

    For the fighters, where you ask "But can it tackle all the different types of fighters? Particularly the fencers and the martial artists?", I would point you to the following post on my own blog:

    That might point you in a direction that would be helpful for your needs.

    1. Hi, thanks! And I just picked up versions 1.2 of Adventures Dark & Deep, going through them now.


That's my side of things. Let me know what you think, my friend.

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