Tuesday, October 26, 2010
What does a WotRP character look like?
So, what does a character for Warriors of the Red Planet look like?
Pretty much like a character for OD&D, B/X, Swords & Wizardry, Labyrinth Lord, or "editions" of that sort, and not too far off from close cousins 1E AD&D and OSRIC.
But there are a couple of notable differences.
Firstly, there are no classes here that you already have in any other books. Sure, some character classes are close, but not spot on by any means. One of the design decisions behind WotRP was not just to make it a complete game in an of itself, but also a book you could bring to the table right now, and plop elements you like right into your current game, whether its monsters, weird science, or you'd just rather play WotRP's Scoundrel or Warrior than the "standard" Thief or Fighter.
Second, there are a few "optional" rules here and there, that you may or may not want to adopt. These optional rules remain strongly in the arena of old-school gaming (and in many cases are loosely inspired by house rules from stuff like Arduin and Judges Guild), but are hopefully going to help you better reflect Sword & Planet conceits than the more traditional Fantasy/Sword & Sorcery conceits. The "optional" part means if you're preferring to use WotRP as more of a sourcebook for your current Swords & Wizardry game, for instance, you can ignore the farther ranging optional rules and just use the more traditional ones.
For instance, saving throws. Each character is presented with a "standard" Swords & Wizardry-style single saving throw progression, but there is also an optional WotRP multiple saving throw progression covering the common Sword & Planet hazards of Explosions, Mentalism, Energy, Poison, and Falls.
So here's an example WotRP character from an early playtest: Dorum Dor, a Scientist. The Scientist is a new class that specializes in weird science, and helps fill the sort of niche a Magic User or Cleric does in traditional fantasy games. Instead of spells, though, Scientists get "gadgets", and these get more elaborate and more powerful as the character levels up. Scientists, of course, are a fixture of Sword & Planet fiction, ready to help the hero with a new wonder of science, or secretly developing an army of super mutants to hasten the fall of civilization.
Scientist, 4th Level
AC 4 
Save 12 [Explosions 10; Mentalism 13; Energy 11; Poison 11; Falls 12]
Str 9(-); Int 17(+2); Wis 10 (-)
Dex 13(+1); Con 14(+1); Cha 8 (-1)
Gadgets Stunning Field, Flame Thrower, Interpreter Lens; Personal Invisibility Generator, Tissue Re-generator.
Equipment Simple weapon harness, Arm Bracers, Energy Pack, Short sword, Irradium Pistol, 10 bullets, Poison test kit, Magnifying glass, Sample vials, Herbology of the Throon Waste, Exploding Bullets (5), Anti-disease Syringe (3).