Jump to content

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Lucius

The Professions of Arms

Recommended Posts

I wrote this a few years ago. As far as I recall, I've never posted it anywhere. Until now.

 

With the Ultimate Skill coming, and all the buzz on the board about skills now, I thought I'd go ahead and post it. By the way, I remember writing more than this, and I did intend to go on and expand the idea to the other adventuring archetypes. Who knows, maybe I'll finally do so. And if I turn up the "lost materiels" that I suspect are still hidden in my stuff in storage, I'll post them too.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary wonders if we'll be able to fit the whole thing in this next post....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms The Professions of Arms

 

“The Profession of Arms is an occupation founded upon violence and death.” Lucius Alexander

 

The so-called “background skills” all too often fade into the background and disappear. A character will start with a profession skill, or knowledge skill, because it’s in a “package deal” or just because you get one free, and then that skill languishes, ignored by player and Game Operations Director alike. But “Background” doesn’t have to mean “invisible.” Indeed, an appropriately complex, realistically detailed, and above all interesting background enriches paintings, photographs, novels….and characters.

 

More than most fantasy characters, fighters have tendency to start looking too much alike. If you’ve noticed that several warriors in the game all have STR 20, DEX 14 or 15, Familiarity with Common Melee Weapons, comparable combat skill levels, and a similar set of skills, these ideas about using professional skills may help you see a different face under each helm, not to mention giving warriors interesting things to do besides sword-swinging.

 

Some things these skills don’t do

As a general rule, if a situation is already covered by an existing skill, a PS: will not duplicate the other skill – although one skill may modify the other. Thus PS: Barbarian or PS: Ranger will not substitute for Survival skill, but will often be a complementary skill. At the Game Operations Director’s discretion, a PS: may substitute for a missing skill in specific circumstances; PS: Knight or PS: Cavalry might substitute for Breakfall (at a penalty) when falling off a horse, but not when falling out of a tree.

 

In some cases these skills do have considerable overlap: For example, it would seem that PS: Paladin would include everything a Knight can do. There are three ways to balance this: 1) Make the “superior” skill cost more. 2) Split the skills and make one a prerequisite, saying you cannot have a PS: Paladin roll higher than your PS: Knight, or say that a Paladin has PS: Knight in conjunction with PS: Monk or PS: Holy Man or something of that nature. 3) Assign penalties to the “superior” skill when it is used in ways similar to the “lesser” skill. After all, a Paladin has a lot more to learn, and may take a -4 to judge a warhorse or recognize a heraldic design, where a Knight would have no penalty.

 

Codes and Behavior

Another thing these skills don’t do is impose behavior. It is entirely possible for a paladin to be fallen, for a barbarian to be decadent. A PS: Knight skill implies knowledge of a code of chivalry, but does not compel obedience to it. Deviation from behavior “appropriate” to the profession will erode the skill only over a long time, if the campaign rules are such that unused skills eventually fade away. However, certain uses of the skill may be affected by the character’s behavior. A barbarian coming out of a luxurious 10 year retirement, no longer used to hardship and discomfort, may still remember how to light a fire and how to skin game, but take a -5 when trying to remain still in ambush when she finds she’s laying on an anthill. And a knight with a bad Reputation may have a hard time with uses of the skill that involve being seen as chivalrous (although he may still use the skill that way on someone ignorant of the reputation.)

 

“Just how useful are these skills in combat, anyway?”

A story from the old West relates that a gunslinger, having made an appointment with his rival to meet at sundown, was asked by a friend “why not get it over with now?” The gunslinger responded “If we go do it now, that sombrero he always wears will keep the noonday sun off his face. I’m at the west end of town, so when we walk out into the street at sunset, the sun’ll be in his eyes. He’s in the saloon already; he’ll probably be getting likkered up for the next few hours. Meanwhile, I’ll take a nap. Keep an eye out and make sure he and his friends don’t try any funny business.” Which goes to show there’s more to gunslinging than fast reflexes and hand-eye coordination. On the one hand, it seems unreasonable that a warrior’s professional skill would offer no advantage in combat; on the other, allowing a skill roll as a complementary skill to a to-hit roll turns the skill into a cheap substitute for combat levels. In fact, one could argue that such levels are a reflection of exactly this kind of expertise; knowing how to maneuver an opponent so that the sun or wind are in their eyes, not yours, so that their balance, not yours, is threatened by a stump, dropped weapon, or pool of blood. This is why a character who went “adventuring” for 6 months has more XP to spend on levels than one who spent 6 months in a dojo. But there is no reason these skills should not have limited combat effects, appropriate to their cost. For example, if an enemy gets a surprise bonus to OCV – say for trying a shield bash after 2 turns of sword swinging – a warrior might make a roll to anticipate the move and negate the bonus. Or if a PRE attack would ordinarily leave a warrior with reduced DCV, a penalized PS roll could partially or wholly negate that effect, as staying on-guard has become second nature to the professional fighter. And rules already exist to allow PS: Forward Observer or PS: Siege Engineer to add to the OCV of certain crew-served weapons. Example: A cavalryman with DCV 6 is mounted on a horse with DCV 4, and thus has DCV 4. With a PS: Cavalry roll, he can have DCV 5 for the duration of combat. If it’s his own horse (horse and rider have trained together) he can have DCV 5 automatically and DCV 6 if he makes the roll. Why doesn’t Riding skill confer this benefit? Because riding a horse is one thing, controlling it in combat is another.

 

Some things these skills can do

Perhaps the most common use of warrior PS skills will be as complementary skills. They may assist other skills, perception rolls, and characteristic rolls. Remember that a warrior skill may be complementary in one case, but not another. For example, it may be complementary to Trading when dealing in weapons, but not in jewels. Or a PS: Paladin roll may help a STR roll if it involves saving a life, but not for arm wrestling in a bar.

 

Common Abilities

There are some things any warrior is likely to know about to a greater or lesser extent, and for convenience these are discussed first.

Weapons

A warrior may be able to identify a weapon’s origin; judge its quality; know its lore if it’s a famous or unique weapon; know how to hone, oil, and otherwise care for a weapon, including culturally appropriate rituals. Of course the specifics will vary by type of warrior. Any warrior with the skill to use a given weapon will know how to care for it, but how many will recognize an apparently harmless ornament as a throwing star? Tell by their pole arms where an army unit was recruited? Know by the curved blade and sharkskin hilt that a sword was forged in the Southern Isles? Distinguish Elf, Troll, and Goblin arrows by the shape of the stone arrowheads and the fletching? These are ways one warrior can differ from another.

Armor

Warriors who are accustomed to wearing armor may, with a successful roll, cut in half the time to get in or out of armor; useful if one must prepare for battle quickly, or if one has suddenly been dropped in water. As with weapons, a warrior may maintain and even make temporary repairs to armor. Recognizing armor types, and drawing conclusions about the wearers, are also possible.

People

First of all, one warrior will often know another, regardless of type. The way one walks or stands, telltale calluses of weapon practice, and a thousand subtle clues help fighters size up everyone they meet. Often, this information is subliminal; a warrior may not be able to articulate why one person in the bar commands more wary respect than another, but he just “knows” which is the more dangerous brawler. Warrior skills also influence how others see the warrior; thus, PS: Knight could help persuade someone that the character is chivalrous and trustworthy, PS: Barbarian can be used to intimidate (add to PRE attacks) and PS: Officer can help inspire confidence in followers.

Tactics

Although no PS is a substitute for Tactics they may often be complementary. One knight understands how another knight thinks; a ranger who guards a forest against Goblins may predict how a Goblin band will react; even a lowly sailor or mercenary may recall how a successful captain dealt with a certain situation. Few PS skills are likely to be complementary to Tactics in all situations; even PS: Officer for example may be no help in a one on one battle, where PS: Gladiator or PS: Duelist may be very useful.

 

Specific Example PS Skills

 

PS: Adventurer

This represents the aptitudes developed by a wanderer who goes about seeking gold, glory, or glamour and excitement. It may be regarded as a default background skill for exactly the kind of person who can’t resist the urge to explore the Mysterious Hole in the Ground. An Adventurer knows much about getting into and out of dangerous situations, and because they often swap stories, may know something about a place or creature they have never personally encountered. An Adventurer is good at remembering directions, either given by another or to remember a path already trod. If literate, and Adventurer reads maps well, and can draw them (more crudely than a cartographer.) This skill can apply to anything from starting a fire to securing a rope for climbing, but usually at heavy penalties; it’s a fall-back for self-reliant people who do things because they’ve had to, but not necessarily learned the most efficient ways to do them. Even on a successful roll, the task may be done crudely or inefficiently: “Okay, it takes a few hours and a lot of sticks, but you have 2d6 arrows for your bow. They do one less damage class, are -3 OCV and double range penalties, and you can’t make any more until you kill a bird for more feathers.”

 

Examples of PS: Adventurer in Use.

Our Hero plans a trip to the Goblin Haunted Hills, but first takes a trip to a variety of inns, taverns, markets, and places where the use of PS: Adventurer as complementary to Conversation will tell him much about the Goblins’ weapons, tactics, usual numbers in a band, favorite places for ambush, etc.

Deciding to recruit some help, Our Hero uses Adventurer complementary to Oratory and by recounting previous exploits inspires the confidence of a few stout-hearted young fellows.

Although Our Hero missed his perception roll to spot the Goblns, a PS: Adventurer roll at -2 brings on the realization that this narrow pass is just the sort of place Goblins like for an ambush. (The roll would be at -5 if Our Hero hadn’t been clever enough to ask questions before venturing forth.)

The posse falls to quarreling over loot. Since this is a common situation for Adventurers, Our Hero makes a PRE attack (“Be still a moment and hear me out!”) followed by a PS: Adventurer roll to talk everyone into a fair distribution.

 

PS: Barbarian

Anyone with this skill should also have Survival, knowledge of a tribal area, and probably Tracking. A “Barbarian” is by definition “uncivilized,” that is, a member of a culture less urban, less settled, and/or less technologically sophisticated than whatever civilized culture the barbarian is contrasted with. The Barbarian is at home in the wilderness and often inspires mingled awe and contempt in more civilized people, who regard the barbarian as kin to beasts. Indeed PS: Barbarian is useful if confronting a wild animal, not to “tame” or befriend it, but to predict its reactions and avoid antagonizing it. PS: Barbarian often complements Survival, not only to represent know-how (“What do you mean, you don’t know how to make fire without flint? I’ll show you.”) but sheer toughness and fortitude, for a barbarian is used to privation. The barbarian will more readily eat raw meat, sleep on bare ground, drink bitter water from a sulfur spring, lie motionless in ambush despite crawling bugs, or whatever must be done to survive, or to fulfill whatever goals the barbarian is committed to. Barbarians are credited with superior senses, but it is more accurate to say they have wild thing’s suspicious wariness, and are more apt to trust the irrational hunch that is often the prompting of instinct or intuition. The stereotypical barbarian is a hulking warrior, but it is well to remember that horse nomads are often small, and a barbarian tribe could be Pygmies or wild Hobbits, or peaceful Eskimos. Coming from a “simpler” i.e. less specialized society, the barbarian can be astonishingly self-reliant.

 

Examples of PS: Barbarian in Use

Our Hero is being tortured for information. Ordinarily this is Skill Vs Skill, Interrogation against an Ego roll, but when Our Hero loses by 3 points, the Game Operations Director allows a roll on PS: Barbarian at -3. Then the rest of the party finally rescues the barbarian, he says “It wasn’t much worse than my tribe’s initiation ordeal.”

A party crossing a desert camps in a canyon where high walls offer shade and a few green things make it seem an oasis. In the middle of the day, while they sleep in preparation for the night’s travel, they all fail perception rolls that were made at -6 because they were dozing, except the barbarian whose PS: Barbarian was considered complementary. Thus Our Hero awakes from a nightmare in which the distant sound of rushing water is somehow terrifying. Trying to figure out what’s wrong, Our Hero makes a Deduction roll (at the default of <= 8) again with PS: Barbarian as complementary, and just knows that the canyon seems like a trap. They’ve learned to trust the barbarian’s instincts, so the party escapes just before the flash flood comes roaring down.

 

PS: Knight

Characters with this skill should also have Riding and Courtier or “High Society” and may have to meet other prerequisites. This skill may have other names in other cultural contexts, as “Ronin” or “Samurai” in Japan or “Equestrian” in Republican Rome. Ideally a knight is “noble” in every sense of the word, either born to a tradition of chivalry or a commoner formally exalted in status for courage and martial prowess.

 

PS: Ranger

Anyone with this skill should also have Survival and knowledge of at least one wilderness area or terrain type, and probably Tracking. PS: Ranger is often a complementary skill for outdoor skills. What a ranger can do depends to some extent on how the Game Operations Director defines “Ranger” for a given game, but whether they guard the king’s deer from poachers, guide pilgrims across deserts, or hunt Orcs wherever they are found, any ranger will know much about the wild and things the live and move there. Identifying animals and plants will often be automatic (no roll) if they are native to a place the ranger knows. A ranger can predict weather, up to 48 hrs in advance on a good roll. Rangers usually know a lot about the people and creatures they meet in their chosen wilderness, whether it’s the Goblins who come raiding from yonder mountain or the itinerant smith making the rounds of the local villages. Although PS: Ranger is no substitute for Navigation, a ranger has a good memory for landmarks and is seldom confused as to direction.

 

Examples of PS: Ranger in Use

Our Hero falls over, left leg gone numb. Although no wound is visible, the healer finds and removes a flint arrowhead that only becomes visible when withdrawn a handspan from the ranger’s body. Clearly, he is a victim of Elf Stroke. “I thought you said the Elves were friendly?” After making a PS: Ranger roll, Our Hero states “That’s shaped like a Troll arrowhead. Either an Elf used a Troll arrow, or a Troll has learned an Elven spell.”

 

PS: Warrior

The most “generic” of warrior PS skills, and a good default if the character’s background is vague and undefined, or varied and eclectic. It may be assumed that a warrior’s knowledge is broad but shallow. They could tell a warhorse from a palfrey, but not necessarily judge among warhorses. They would recognize the nation of a group of uniformed soldiers, and tell officers apart, but be unlikely to know the specific unit or a leader’s exact rank.

 

PS: Weapons Specialist

Specific types include PS: Swordsman, Spearman, Hatchetman, Archer, Martial Artist, Boxer, Wrestler, Sensei, etc. The weapons specialist should have spent at least 12 points on combat skill levels and/or martial arts maneuvers. This skill represents the expertise of a person who is devoted to a specific weapon or fighting style. When dealing with a favorite weapon type, the specialist will have far more accurate and precise knowledge of a given weapons’ value, utility, and quality; the lore and history of famous, unique, or magick weapons; the names, reputations, and history of warriors who use that weapon type or fighting style. By examining a weapon, the expert can tell where it was made, when it was made, and by whom; i.e. by Dwarven, Elven, or Human weaponsmith, or by specific culture, or possibly in the case of a famous weaponsmith, by individual. The specialist may also be able to detect frauds. This skill is complementary to Weaponsmith. More than other warriors, the specialist is able to judge another warrior’s fighting style, at least if it has any bearing on the specialist’s own.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Copyright Palindromedary Enterprises 2002

 

Excess words have been removed and fed to a palindromedary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

If anyone finds the materiel useful, I'd like to be credited.

 

If you want to expand on it, please share! I'm hoping you will.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

If you try to claim it as your own, "Copyright 2002 Palindromedary Enterprises" is not just a tagline.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Dang - You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Lucius again.

 

But as said above - the information has been pasted twice. And I'd get rid of the "Dear Mr. Long" as well :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: Re: Re: Re: The Professions of Arms

 

That's what I get for posting in a hurry and not checking my work.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary observes that posting while exhausted is a less than stellar idea too, even if Lucius IS suffering insomnia again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Dang - You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Lucius again.

 

Seconded. This is an excellent concept, Lucius - far above and beyond the "warrior's skill" proof-of-concept that you've posted here already.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Agreed, there's a natural aggravation stat-wise in any system, and it's as true in HERO as it is in d20; characters built to do certain things are going to have a certain homogeny. This helps differentiate them, and gives their natural background some personality.

 

I wonder if TUS will have something like this?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Professions of Arms

 

I liked this idea/writeup a lot. I've been thinking of doing a swordmaster type hero and this would make him a lot more interesting.

 

Want to try writing a few examples of "PS: Swordmaster in use?"

 

Agreed, there's a natural aggravation stat-wise in any system, and it's as true in HERO as it is in d20; characters built to do certain things are going to have a certain homogeny. This helps differentiate them, and gives their natural background some personality.

 

I wonder if TUS will have something like this?

 

Probably not quite to this depth; this is specialized to a particular broad class of characters in a particular genre. But I rather hope something like this will be in the Professional Skills section. Frankly, I suspect most of the things I would think of, Steve Long probably has - not in the specific details, but the general principles surely.

 

Thanks for the kudos, everyone. And does anyone have any examples from play of how PS: skills were used creatively?

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Perk: President, Palindromedary Enterprises

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Want to try writing a few examples of "PS: Swordmaster in use?"

 

 

I'm not sure I could really add much to what you've already given, but here are a few things that I could see a swordmaster using his PS for:

 

Teaching: A swordmaster is a skilled instructor in his art form. Training with him allows other characters to gain skill levels (not for free, but to explain why they got better). Likewise they could teach martial maneuvers. A successful skill roll could cut down the in-game time needed for the students to pick up these skills.

 

Duels/matches: A PS skill roll would allow you to know the customs of dueling for an area. Perhaps in one culture you're allowed to use kicks, punches, and there is an unlimited fighting area. In another they use a platform and anything besides a sword strike is a foul. Like your previous example the PS would allow the character to choose the most advantageous time of day, and circumstances to duel.

 

Weapons: A PS roll would allow the character to determine the quality of a blade, where it was made, etc, perhaps as a complementary roll to KS: swords. Would also be able to know what it's good for, and what it's weaknesses are.

 

Other fighters: The PS would allow the character to know about the fighter he's facing by how he wears and holds his sword, how he moves, and his stance.

 

Fighting: The PS could act as a complementary roll to resist disarms, and binds. Could also allow him a chance to resist or avoid "special" tricks.

 

Just some ideas.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Weapons: A PS roll would allow the character to determine the quality of a blade, where it was made, etc, perhaps as a complementary roll to KS: swords. Would also be able to know what it's good for, and what it's weaknesses are.

 

.

 

Good point (pardon the expression.) So given a chance to choose his weapon, and knowing his opponent and the local rules, the Swordmaster might choose one weapon over another because it "fits" the situation....say it give him the reach he needs against this particular duellist and HIS weapon, or it is good for disarming and the local custom is that once disarmed, you're expected to honorably surrender....

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Air Force Surplus Palindromedary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Professions of Arms

 

The Professions of Arms

 

“The Profession of Arms is an occupation founded upon violence and death.â€

Lucius Alexander

 

An idea I forgot to put in originally; discussion of what characteristics to base the rules on.

 

PS: Adventurer

Should probably be an INT based skill, as an adventurer often lives by his wits.

 

PS: Barbarian

I would say should be based on CON, as endurance and hardihood are almost defining characteristics of a barbarian.

 

PS: Knight

I would base on PRE, because being a knight is almost inextricably tied to such ideas as social position, how one comports oneself, how one is seen by others.

 

PS: Ranger

Could be based on CON, like the barbarian, or could be based on INT if you see a ranger's perceptiveness as more important than his toughness.

 

PS: Warrior

As the most "generic" sort of warrior profession I listed, it should be based on either STR or possibly DEX.

 

PS: Weapons Specialist

Should be based on DEX, because the mastery of physical technique is so important to this kind of warrior.

 

 

Lucius Alexander

 

Excess words have been removed and fed to a palindromedary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Professions of Arms

PS: Bandit Also called Brigand, Highwayman; in urban fantasy, Mugger

Based on: PRE (possibly INT or STR)

The Bandit (as the name implies) usually works in groups. Bandits are robbers who usually ambush their victims and cow them into surrendering their valuables with a show of overwhelming force; sometimes, they are cut-throats who strike without warning and then loot the bodies. An example of "heroic" characters who would have this PS: Skill are Robin Hood's famous Merry Men. One of the most obvious uses of the skill would be to set up an ambush, or anticipate where one has been laid ("That's where I would have set up an ambush; I say we have our weapons ready before taking one step closer.")

 

Examples of PS: Bandit in use

The party has captured a wizard they have been tracking for some time; they are sure he has the Amulet of Maguffin, but an initial search failed to find it on his person. Our Hero says "Maybe he's hidden it by magick, but maybe not. Let me look." Being familiar with many of the ways valuable objects can be hidden about one's garments, Our Hero gets a PS: Bandit roll as complementary to a Concealment roll, and quickly finds the small coinlike item sewn into the brim of the wizard's pointy hat.

The party is hurrying to the Capital with the evidence the King needs to help him ferret out the traitors in his court - some of them high officers of his constabulary. So they play it safe and hide when a patrol rides by. They are about to get back on the King's High Way when Our Hero, having made his PS: Bandit roll, says "Stay down. Wait a moment." In minutes, another pair of constables ride past. "They always do that. One or two riders tail the main group as rear guard."

 

Lucius Alexander

 

PS Palindromedary Rider

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

If I had some reputation for every time someone said they owe me reputation....

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary finishes "He'd have a lot of reputation."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A Challenge

 

I'm glad so many people appreciate this thread. But I'm very aware that on a topic like this, what I have to say can't be the be-all and end-all.

 

I was toying with the idea of posting a whole alphabetic series, Assassin to Zombie-Hunter. But I think what I'll do is put one profession out there:

 

PS: Assassin

 

And ask - how would any of you write it up? Anyone want to try posting "examples of PS: Assassin in use" or discuss what characteristic (if any) to base it on?

 

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary notes that if that gets a response, others will follow....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: A Challenge

 

PS: Assassin

 

And ask - how would any of you write it up? Anyone want to try posting "examples of PS: Assassin in use" or discuss what characteristic (if any) to base it on?

The obvious one that comes to my mind is:

 

Methods: An assassin knows all sorts of ways to kill people. Many of them are rather... obvious... but there are quite a number that look perfectly reasonable and natural, for a given value of natural. Poisons, slipping off a balcony, breaking your neck falling off a spooked horse, et cetera et cetera et cetera.

 

Assessing the price of the "hit": Any assassin worthy of the name needs to be able to look at a target and determine just how tough a job killing them is going to be. Included in that assessment is the cost of materials, lead-in time, and just how expensive - both in currency and intangibles - the hit is going to be for the assassin. Also, you've got to be able to tell how much the client is willing to pay.:P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Good points, Black Rose. To refine the ideas a little:

 

PS: Assassin

 

So much of what an Assassin does would seem to depend on DEX - stealthily climbing to the window, carefully handling the poisoned dagger so as not to nick himself, throwing it accurately from a safe distance - that if based on anything, it should be DEX.

 

An Assassin would not necessarily be able to make a poison, but probably knows where to buy it (complementary to Streetwise - or to Courtier perhaps) and knows very well indeed how to handle and administer it. A PS: Assassin roll would also be called for when arranging a fatal "accident" - the patch of spilled oil in just the right place, the chariot wheel mysteriously coming loose, the viper finding its way into the right bedroom. In some of these cases, of course, a failed roll can be dangerous to the would-be assassin - it might be wise to get Animal Handler - Serpents before trying the trick with the viper for example.

 

Assassins will often belong to a guild (such as the Slayer's Brotherhood) a cult (such as the historical Assassins) or a clan (such as Japanese Ninja.)

 

In some cases, the specific "kind" of Assassin can make a difference to the skill. A "guild" type for example is in it for the money - they can use PS: Assassin as complementary skill to Trading when arranging for a "hit." The religiously or politically motivated Assassin, on the other hand, even if he raises money for the cause by hiring out his skills, may use PS: Assassin if captured, to resist Interrogation. The Game Operations Director should consider carefully what place (if any) Assassins have in his game; this may impact their abilities.

 

Example of PS: Assassin in use

 

The party has discovered a number of mysterious vessels of fluid and is arguing whether they might be beneficial potions. Our Hero makes his PS: Assassin role and says "I know by the smell what this one is. It's an antidote to iacaine powder - a powerful poison. Drink it beforehand and you can sit down to eat a meal laced with iacaine, and you'll be fine - your guest won't live to the second course."

 

Someone asks "Does that mean one of these other bottles could contain the potion?" Our Hero makes another roll, and replies "There's no telling. Iocaine is colorless, tasteless, and odorless. It could be in any or all of them."

 

Lucius Alexander

 

And an inconceivable palindromedary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

Okay, next up:

 

PS: Bodyguard

Off the top of my head:

 

Assess potential choke-points and ambush sites.

 

Maintain near-constant knowledge of all exits.

 

Threat assessment of all potential targets near principal.

 

Assess job difficulty (for determining fees).

 

Planning travel routes for minimum tracing potential.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

For the assassin: The assassin has almost the same skills as a detective. He might be lucky enough to be standing in an alley when the target walks by, but more likely he needs to be able to unobtrusively observe the target for a time, determine where and when to strike, then have a trap set or plot a getaway. A knowledge of alibi production would come in handy if he wasn't trying to gain a personal rep with the kill.

 

For the Bodyguard, a skill like "resist distraction" would be helpful. A professional bodyguard, unlike the run of the mill guards, would not be distracted, rather alerted, by the common gamut of distractions. The sound of a pebble on the wall just around the corner? Call for backup, don't just wander over and investigate. A tipsy wench with a wine bottle; "Heh shold'r, haffa drin' w' a lady?" A pro would be insulted by the obviousness.

 

Midas

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Re: The Professions of Arms

 

So in that case, what would PS: Gladiator get you?

 

And what other Professional Skills would fit into that campaign?

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary notes that Lucius once wrote up a gladiator martial art, but that's another story.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...