Posts Tagged ‘characters



29
Jul
10

Funky Blank OD&D Character Sheet

Front page

Back page

As promised when I posted long ago about my 4E character sheets, here are my OD&D sheets. I made these at the very beginning of the White Sandbox campaign, when both my mastery of GIMP (lots of the sheet involved literal cutting and pasting) and understanding of what kind of things would be desirable to have on a sheet were in their infancy. If I were doing this again, I’d want to give more room for special powers, include a worksheet for detailing the attributes of custom classes (by listing those of the fighting man, magic-user, and cleric and having players circle which ones they chose or what they replaced them with), and also incorporate a “paper doll” for showing where equipment is carried and which of it might explode.

You are invited to download .jpg versions of the front page and back page from box.net, which hopefully are of sufficient quality for printing.

24
Jun
10

Red Box Workshop: The Ghoul PC

GHOULS

Ghouls are living corpses who feed on the flesh of the living and the dead. Withered and cunning, their clotted hair only partially conceals their red eyes and sharp, pointed teeth. Most ghouls are bestial creatures with no interest beyond hunger. A few, however, conquer their appetites and retain their will. Though not as ferocious in battle as their feral kin, they can be valuable allies—if they can be trusted.

The prime requisite for a ghoul is Constitution. A ghoul character whose Constitution score is 13 or higher will receive a bonus on earned experience.

RESTRICTIONS: Ghouls use eight-sided dice (d8) to determine their hit points. They may advance to a maximum of 8th level of experience. Ghouls may use any type of weapon. Their tough hides grant them a base AC of 6, but they may not wear armor or use shields. Clerics may turn, destroy or command player-character ghouls, though this grows more difficult as the ghoul increases in level. Use the following table to see what type of undead to treat the ghoul as for this purpose.

Ghoul’s Level Turn As:
1-2 Ghoul
3-4 Wight
5-6 Wraith
7-8 Mummy

SPECIAL ABILITIES: A ghoul’s ragged nails and teeth carry a necrotic disease. An unarmed attack by a ghoul inflicts 1-3 points of damage and paralyzes a living target who fails to save vs. paralyzation. Paralysis lasts for 2-8 turns and is removed by any cure wounds spell. A starting ghoul may make one unarmed attack per round; this increases to two attacks/round at 4th level, and three attacks/round at 8th level.

SAVING THROWS: As fighters.

ATTACK PROGRESSION: As fighters.

ADVANCEMENT: As per the magic-user advancement table.

11
Jun
10

Red Box Workshop: The Trader PC

TRADERS

Not every merchant is a sedentary copper-pinching clerk. Those who make their living buying and selling in foreign lands must be amiable, quick-witted and ready to draw steel to protect their wealth and property. Such traders make good companions to an adventuring band.

The prime requisites for a trader are Intelligence and Charisma. A trader character whose Intelligence or Charisma score is 13 or higher will receive a 5% bonus on earned experience. Traders whose Intelligence and Charisma scores are 13 or higher will receive a 10% bonus to earned experience.

RESTRICTIONS: Traders use six-sided dice (d6) to determine their hit points. They may use any type of weapon or shield, but they may not wear any armor more protective than leather.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: A trader’s candid demeanor and experience with outsiders merits a +1 bonus to reaction rolls. The trader may also assess value when examining an item of treasure; this has the same chance of success as a thief’s ability to hear noise. A successful roll provides the item’s exact worth, while a failed roll means the trader is unsure. (This is contingent on how much information the trader has, such as whether an item is magical.) If the DM rolls a 6 on the assess value check, the trader’s assessment is wildly inaccurate. Lastly, the trader pays 10% less when buying goods and services and haggles for 10% more when selling treasure. This does not increase XP earned.

SAVING THROWS: As fighters.

ATTACK PROGRESSION: As thieves.

ADVANCEMENT: As per the thief advancement table.

07
Jun
10

Red Box Workshop: The Berserker PC

BERSERKERS

These barbarian warriors practice the art of the berserkergang, or battle trance. This state imparts great strength and fearlessness in battle, but makes it difficult to distinguish friend from foe.

The prime requisites for a berserker are Strength and Constitution. A berserker character whose Strength or Constitution score is 13 or higher will receive a 5% bonus on earned experience. Berserkers whose Strength and Constitution scores are 13 or higher will receive a 10% bonus to earned experience.

RESTRICTIONS: Berserkers use eight-sided dice (d8) to determine their hit points. They may use any type of weapon or shield, but they may not wear any armor more protective than leather.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: A berserker enters the berserkergang by spending a full round working himself up into frenzy. (Starting at 4th level the berserker may enter the trance state instantly.) In this state, he gains +2 to hit and damage, 2 additional hit points per hit die (which are lost when the frenzy ends), +1 to individual initiative and a 10’ bonus to his movement rate. However, he suffers a +2 penalty to AC, and he may take no actions when not in melee other than moving into melee. If a berserker engaged in melee finds that he has no opponents left but is in melee range of an ally, he must save vs. spells or attack an adjacent ally; this save may be repeated each round until it succeeds. Terminating the berserkergang before combat ends also requires a successful save vs. spells. Upon leaving the battle trance, the berserker is fatigued for the next hour, suffering a -2 penalty to hit and damage and a +2 penalty to AC.

SAVING THROWS: As dwarves.

ATTACK PROGRESSION: As fighters.

ADVANCEMENT: As per the fighter advancement table.

* * * * *

NOTE: The author recommends that any group which restricts PC-on-PC conflict should not use the Berserker class, as it may be seen as a tool for evading such restrictions.

02
Jun
10

Red Box Workshop: The Spellbender PC

SPELLBENDERS

Spellbenders have an affinity for the shape and flow of magic. Instead of learning spells, they hone the knack of countering or controlling the spells of others.

RESTRICTIONS: Spellbenders use four-sided dice (d4) to determine their hit points. They may use any type of weapon, but they may not use shields, nor any armor more protective than leather.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Spellbenders gain a +4 bonus to saving throws against magic due to their understanding of magical energies. They may also use any magical item that can be employed by magic-users or clerics. In addition, a spellbender may employ the warp spell ability when any character within 60′ casts a spell, uses a magical item or otherwise creates some magical effect, or when the spellbender encounters the manifestation of a magical effect, such as an area of magical light or a wall of fire. The spellbender may only make one attempt to affect any given magical effect. The spellbender rolls 2d6 and consults the following table:

Level of Spellbender 1st Level Effect 2nd Level Effect 3rd Level Effect 4th Level Effect 5th Level Effect 6th Level Effect
1 D7+
2 D6+/M11+
3 D5+/M10+ D7+
4 D4+/M9+ D6+/M11+
5 D4+/M8+ D5+/M10+ D7+
6 D4+/M7+/C11+ D4+/M9+ D6+/M11+
7 D4+/M6+/C10+ D4+/M8+ D5+/M10+ D7+
8 D4+/M5+/C9+ D4+/M7+/C11+ D4+/M9+ D6+/M11+
9 D4+/M5+/C8+ D4+/M6+/C10+ D4+/M8+ D5+/M10+ D7+
10 D4+/M5+/C7+ D4+/M5+/C9+ D4+/M7+/C11+ D4+/M9+ D6+/M11+
11+ D4+/M5+/C6+ D4+/M5+/C8+ D4+/M6+/C10+ D4+/M8+ D5+/M10+ D7+

A “D” result indicates that the spellbender has successfully dispelled the chosen spell or spell effect.

An “M” result indicates that the spellbender may modify the chosen spell or spell effect. The modification must be relatively limited in nature, but is otherwise limited only by the player’s imagination and the DM’s discretion. Examples include creating a small gap in a wall of fire or a fireball, adding or subtracting two pips from each die of damage inflicted by a lightning bolt or healed by cure light wounds, increasing the range of a magic missile spell from 150’ to 200’, enhancing a sleep spell so it affects targets of up to six hit dice, or transforming the targets of massmorph into rocks instead of trees.

A “C” result indicates that the spellbender may control the chosen spell. When a spellbender controls a spell as it is being cast, the spell originates from her rather than from the caster, and she makes all decisions called for by the spell—the target(s) of a hold person spell, the location of a wall of ice, the form she will assume for polymorph self, and so forth.

On a roll of “2” or “3”, the spellbender fails critically, suffering a number of points of damage equal to the spell’s level from magical backlash.

A spellbender who obtains a “C” or “M” result can choose to take a lower result. She may control or dispel a spell instead of modifying it, she may dispel a spell instead of controlling it, and she may always decline to affect the spell at all.

SAVING THROWS: As magic-users.

ATTACK PROGRESSION: As magic-users.

ADVANCEMENT: As per the cleric advancement table.

* * * * *

SPELLBENDER-MAGES

A rare few magic-users also possess the talent for spellbending. These spellbender-mages function exactly as normal magic-users, but they may also use the spellbender’s warp spell ability. A spellbender-mage may try to warp her own spells in hopes of obtaining a modify result, allowing her to alter a spell’s effects.

ADVANCEMENT: As per the elf advancement table.

20
May
10

Alas, Poor Black Leaf

It gets worse, as is to be expected from Jack Chick.

Suicide in D&D is less about the fate of poor Black Leaf’s player than it is about drawing a bloody line between your old unwanted character and your shiny new one.

It’s a story as old as D&D itself. A player doesn’t like their character—these things happen!—and decides to play a new one. But instead of a pleasant retirement, the old character suffers a drastic and terminal end. Methods vary from self-inflicted injury to lurid player-narrated tales to the time-honored “death by goblin,” where the character is thrown into deadly situations until the dice take their grim toll.

Why suicide instead of peaceful retirement? There are, I think, three reasons:

1) The Reroll: By the book, if you don’t like your character’s stats, you can’t reroll. You have to play the character you rolled. Character death provides an end run around the problem! Just view your replacement character as your “reroll.”
2) Player Authority: In a world where the DM controls everything other than your character, you may feel that surrendering control of your character is anathema. Killing your character is a final gesture of defiance in the face of the DM’s implicit tyranny.
3) Closure. What’s the end of your character’s story? If the character recedes into the quiet mists of NPCdom, you may never find out! Better, perhaps, to write your own ending to the story while you still have authority to do so.

Personally, as a DM, I find it annoying when players casually kill off their PCs. Characters in which the group is emotionally invested are valuable assets to the DM, and I hate to see such assets tossed away thoughtlessly or inefficiently. On the other hand, I can see how players can find such an attitude grating. This tells me that this is one of those things that should be talked out between players and their DM.

The important thing is that if you’re going to wipe the slate clean of old characters, that you incorporate it into the story of play just as you would everything else. Adventuring is a ghastly profession. Does it drive people to suicide? Does it welcome those with a death wish? Is it a magnet for character-killing weirdness? Of course!

19
May
10

Red Box Workshop: The Ogre PC

OGRES

Eight to ten feet tall and disproportionately broad, these hulking humanoids generally live brutish lives in the wilderness, killing and eating animals and the occasional passing human. But a few have higher ambitions than living in a cave atop a heap of stinking furs and broken loot. These ogres—some young, some old, some sickly, some simply strange—have been known to associate with adventurers and similar outcasts.

The prime requisites for an ogre are Strength and Constitution. An ogre character whose Strength or Constitution score is 13 or higher will receive a 5% bonus on earned experience. Ogres whose Strength and Constitution scores are 13 or higher will receive a 10% bonus to earned experience.

RESTRICTIONS: Ogres use ten-sided dice (d10) to determine their hit points. They may advance to a maximum of 8th level of experience. Ogres may wield polearms, two-handed swords and enormous clubs that deal 1-10 damage per hit. They cannot fit through narrow tunnels and openings designed to accommodate creatures smaller than man-sized, such as goblin warrens and halfling holes. Ogres’ tough hides grant them a base AC of 5, but they may not wear armor or use shields. Ogres must have a minimum score of 9 in Strength and Constitution.

SPECIAL ABILITIES: Ogres live in caves and caverns, and have infravision (heat-sensing sight) which allows them to see 60 feet in the dark. Their long arms give them an impressive reach in combat; when rolling for individual initiative (an optional rule), ogres add +1 in addition to any Dexterity bonus. Even the weakest ogre is tough and resilient by human standards: an ogre takes the maximum result of 10 on its initial hit die at first level. All ogres speak Common, Ogrish and the alignment language or dialect of the character, plus the language of orcs.

SAVING THROWS: As fighters.

ATTACK PROGRESSION: As fighters.

ADVANCEMENT: As per the fighter advancement table.




Past Adventures of the Mule

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