Another old, old article this one was thoughts I was having on classes. My curse is I always, without fail bite off more than I can chew. Which honestly is heartbreaking. Fixing the desire to have "new" classes in Ganth and not over loading my self with work seems to be A. Choosing a solid rule set to base my Setting on and B. reducing the work load it requires to create a "new" class. This article was later revised, and I worked harder at defining these classes. What may need to happen however, is a re-skinning of classes. Somewhat like I have already discussed as 2e Kits.
The Bounty Hunter: The Bounty hunter is my answer to the Assassin class, and while I have a fully written version of this class I feel I need to run it through some play tests before I post it. Why the Bounty Hunter you may ask? Well I don't like the idea of a playable "evil" class and so without going into a huge moral debate I felt a "good" version of the class could be designed.
The Crusader: Ganth's system of Alignment follow a very Basic Edition Idea of Alignment and without going deeper into my Ideas for alignment I'll touch on some of the Ideas I have for the Crusader. The Crusader is my answer to the Cleric, it is a mash up of the Cleric and Paldin class and hopefully I can develop this idea in the right direction. Crusader's receive special powers called Virtues and Blessings from the deities of Ganth. And while it at times seems very much like magic the Miracles preformed by the Crusaders do not have the taint of Chaos like magic in Ganth does. Crusaders are of a Lawful alignment while I am also considering using the Druid as a Neutral type Crusader and what I'll call a Champion of Chaos as a Non-player crusader for the Chaotic Alignment.
The Enchanter: The Enchanter is a re-skinning of the Illusionist, I hate the name Illusionist, it sounds cheap and silly to me. The Enchanter as a magic user class wields all the spell might of the old Illusionist class but I want to add to that spell list with a lot more summoning and creation type spells. The Enchanter fill the role of a Academic Wizard more interested in creating new magic items and creatures than adventuring. Now that's not to say the Enchanter does not adventure, it's just they hold more to the creative and manipulative side of magic.
The Mage: Yes I know I'm calling my Magic-User a Mage, but I like it and this is my game right? Anyway the Mage re-skinning will change in a few ways I thought about allowing the Mage to wield and weapon they wish although the Mage will always lack the Martial prowess of the other classes, I can't get the Idea of Gandalf wielding Glamdring out of my head. What drives the mage is power, wielding the untamed chaos of Magic and bending it to their will. But because of this the Mage risks the vile touch of Chaos. Yes I'm making magic dangerous to use in Ganth, and of course this effects all magic wielding classes with the exception of the Crusaders.
The Rouge: No, thieves exists in Ganth but not as a class, the Rouge is more like a Swashbuckler or Dashing Highwayman or even a Musketeer. The Rouge prefers lighter weapons and armor retains the ability to deal back stabbing although this will be used in some different ways. The big part here is that I'm removing the Thief skills from the Class. One or two may appear as a class ability but I want to lead away from a class heavy class to something a bit different.
The Warrior: The warrior is my Fighting-Man or my Fighter class, some things I am working on also is a option at character creation for the player to pick from one of three or so Warrior Orders based on the characters background and the players desires. These Warrior Orders would reflect ideas for playing characters like Knights or Barbarians. I want to give a player a reason to want to dabble with character development by giving the player the tools to create the warrior they envision.
That's it for my Human classes, like I said yesterday I really want to toy with the Idea of Racial classes, and of course none of this is as of yet in concrete.
Next is the article that "revised" the article above, I started digging deeper into what I wanted to do, but I think I still may need to go with re-skinning classes and not build whole new classes.
"Careful now sweetheart, I'm here for yer husband, not you."
Bounty Hunter These guys are still my answers to a good version of the Assassins, its not to say Assassins as a class don't have a place in Ganth, it's just I frown on them as a "player" class. I have created a "take down" table for Bounty Hunters built much like the assassins Assassinate table, where as using the right tools, and studying his target a bounty hunter can subdue his target quickly without a larger altercation. I have always felt that classes can be "balanced" in play with game mechanics as well as story elements. Much like the paladin's code of ethics, a Bounty Hunter follows a code that guides him. if a Bounty Hunter breaks said code, he no longer can be a Bounty Hunter, losing many of his abilities. I know, I know I hear you but I don't care, my game my rules. Not like I'm ever gonna sale Ganth so I really don't have to make the masses happy, you want that they are calling it 5e...LOL sorry, it was my Grumpy Dwarf coming out...BAD ERIC!
Bounty Hunters must be a part of a Guild of sorts, this guild "legalizes" the targets. Bounty Hunters then gain XP and Gold in hand for bringing them in...alive. Yes you want 'em dead they got an assassins guild for that. So because of this any bounty hunter breaking his code of ethics or hunting targets outside of the guild jurisdiction, well they hare hunted down an punish, based on the severity of the crime, so Bounty Hunters must be Aligned Lawfully and be Good or Neutral morally.
"Be at rest, for the Daughter knows thy weakness and She shall return thy favor"
Cleric This folks is a tough one...I don't like clerics. I really don't. They don't make since to me much in Ganth. Yes Ganth has gods and demons and Divine powers and what not but, I never understood, the thin line between Cleric the adventurer and Cleric the head of the local temple down the street. No I really don't have the want to here much on the subject other than in play of late I have had seen a "need" for a cleric, not so much as a "MEDIC!" for our party of heartless villains in my buddy Sean's campaign. But as that story element needed to flesh out my world. I really like my Crusader class, a lot, it has been a blast seeing how in my own Ganth game Sean's Crusader has interacted with the local temple of the Holy Daughter, Sean's Crusader being that of the White Prophet, they two don't get along.
You see much like the real world, religions really don't much care for each other. No Ganth is not all happy rainbows and such where the Holy Daughter sits idly by as the White Prophet steals away her worshipers. Ganth religions don't get along, neither do gods in the same pantheon. So clerics work much more as covert specialist and let the crusaders do all the militant work and adventuring and such.
So where does this leave my Clerics as a Player Class? Well they just really are much of a Player class. Not in Ganth, at least. I have stolen all their Armor and weapon use and made them more of a "spell-user" type class. They have less HD, and would fall better in the idea of a Greek Oracle or Friar Tuck, than a Knight of Charlemagne or a Knight Templar.
"JUSTICE! For the God, the one true God, shall have me be his right arm in Divine Punishment!"
Crusader I don't like paladins...WHAT!?! First clerics and now paladins? Yes, yes it's true. I needed a way for Champions of powers and gods, of any alignment. I needed a way to have both morally good champions and morally evil champions in the same Faith. Look Alignment is different in Ganth and I have stated it before its not as much a hanging point as some might think. In the same hand I wanted to make each champion of each faith different. Why do Paladins of Thor and Paladins of Horus have the same abilities...its silly. So I have built the Crusader a loose from the hip kind of Cleric/Paladin mash up. Crusader's are the champions of the faith and a militant arm. Each faith grants the Crusader different ability and spells. Spell progression begins at 2nd level, where as Clerics receive spells at 1st level. Crusader can summon "divine" aid depending on their faith. Sean's Crusader summons Jinn, small elemental angelic beings that assist the Crusaders of the White Prophet.
"I see you Son of Corruption, Turn away from my Grove or me and my wolves will gnaw at your entrails."
Druid Druids, are tough, I wanted them in Ganth as I like them, but I wanted to change the feel of them I think. The must be Chaotic in Alignment, but morally can follow any path. So yeah no true neutral Druids in Ganth. They also serve more elder or darker powers, the Old Ones, the Powers of Chaos, whatever you can think of as a force of Nature. Civilization cares very little for Druids and the more organized religions hunt them down as witches, yes even the Chaotic Good one, a witch is a witch as far as the Holy Daughter is concerned. Druids serve as the Champions of Nature, its wrath and its beauty. They are mysterious and ancient in they ways. Druids organize themselves into covens or groves based on the idea of survival of the fittest. Any Druid at anytime can challenge a leader for control of the Grove. Their is very little concept of civilized honor in this.
The Druids at one time where allied with the Summer Elves but when the Summer Elves slipped whole into Chaos, the Druids turned on them. The Druids also have turned on much of civilization. The only thing that keeps Druids from rampaging across the whole of Ganth is ancient Blood Pacts that bind the Druids from wiping the whole of civilization from the World. No these Pacts cant't be broken, and know when the Powers that be claim the Druid that has broken this Pact the Druid can't "kill" said power. Gods don not have stats in Ganth, Gods always win.
"Make Way! The Lord of Dusken Keep approaches!"
Fighter What can I do to screw up fighters? Nothing. I like 'em as is. However, it should be stated that Fighters are not your run of the mill sword swinger in Ganth, Fighters are the best of the best. In modern terms they would be the Special Ops guys in an Army. They are Generals and Knights, Mercenary Leaders and such they are the best. A City Guardsman in any run of the mill town will never gain followers or excel as a swordsman, but a Fighter will.
Fighters in Ganth have the option of Joining certain Fighting Orders, or groups. Based off Alignment, Fighters of Lawful alignment can become Knights in a Knightly Order, Chaotic Fighters can become Mercenaries in a Mercenary Band and Neutral Fighter have the option of joining either one. Orders and Band have rules of such to abide with and benefits can be gained from such organizations.
"This way, The tracks seem to be leading to that cave."
Ranger Rangers can't cast spells, I know I'm horrible. In Ganth they lose the mystic connection to nature trading it for Wilderness skills much like the thief's skill sets. Rangers serve as scouts or guides and also are no longer limited in alignment. This pulls the Ranger away from its Tolkien background I know but that was something I wanted. Be a Druid or a Crusader of some Force of Nature to mimic the old Ranger.
No ranger meets or moots and no secret order as such. They are known for their skills but are judged by their actions. A druid would be just as likely to kill a Ranger as to make friends with one and Armies see value in them and tend to trust them over rouges and thieves.
"By the feathers of the Ninth Lord of the Endarken Cliffs!"
Wizard I don't like the term "magic-user", I know that I may lose some cred here, but I don't so my Spell slingers are Wizards. and what a sorry group they are. Wizards not trained in the Wizards Academy are considered outcasts, renegades and at worse witches, to be hunted, ounished and sometimes killed. Magic in Ganth is dangerous, it feeds off of Chaos and it is thought that a wizard not trained correctly can endanger not only himself but the whole of Ganth. Wizards learn magic in the traditional Vancian sense, however, no two wizard learn the same way, it is inherent to Chaos that the Wizard must master Magic in his own way with his own practices. This makes teaching a long and difficult process. It also makes Magic more mysterious. No two spell ever are formed or even look the same. Scrolls are rare and tend to be only usable by the wizard that created them, however with long weeks in study they can be translated.
Spellbooks are treasured and protected as well as powerful incantations and traps placed on a spell book. The Wizards academy requires a Wizards Mark, a spell that acts as a focus and signature of the Wizard. Without using the Wizards Mark magic can have unpredicted effects.
Casting spells in Ganth is dangerous, it requires a saving throw vs spells to cast a spell, if the throw is failed, the DM then rolls a percentile against the characters spell level of the spell cast. In other words if a player cast a 1st level spell and fails the saving throw, the spell still goes of without a hitch, however the DM rules a hidden percentile roll, if the roll is a 1, the Character receives a point of Chaos Taint. This tally is kept hidden from the player. When the tally matches the Characters Wisdom score, they may then be tempted into Chaos.
This is roleplayed. Period. No game mechanic from this point on, the character must overcome the temptation, passed on what the DM feels is appropriate for the Character. If they succeed in the situation, the count is restarted, if they fail, well, bad things start to happen. Mutations, small at first, but the taint no effects the character resistance, slowly the character falls completely to Chaos, and if not hidden well the other wizard, the Witch Hunters are sent to slay the Character.
"The power here is in my favor, see I did not come alone, meet my friends from the Order of Fit."
Illusionist Illusionist are not your standard Players Hand book lot. They are a hybrid class that share some abilities of the thief. Most Illusionist belong to the Order of Fit, a secretive order tied to assassins and thieves. Illusionist dabble in arcane powers drawn from a shadow world. This shadow world while tainted with Chaos does not hamper the Illusionist in the same ways as Chaos taints the wizard. Illusionists can wear armor as a thief and also can use weapons as thieves, they can never cast spells outside of their spell list neither use magic items outside of those crafted for Illusionist.
Illusionist tend to hold neutral morals however because of their ties to the Order of Fit, most Illusionist are evil. They more often than not become heads of local Order Houses in cities, tasked with controlling contracts and criminal rings.
Illusionist hate wizards as much as wizards hate Illusionist, and the two will seldom work together, Illusionist tend to hide their abilities and portray themselves as simple thieves.
"RAGE Brothers! Feel the fury, the HEAT of our POWER, Let it LOOSE on the Wretched foes before us!"
Elementalist Still deeper into the mysteries of Arcane might is the Elementalist, from the Chaotic realms of the Great Planes of the Elements these madmen draw the stuff of pure creation. The Elementalist for the most part are so rare in Ganth that they seem to be not considered by the Wizards and the Witch Hunters. However, Wizards upon discovering a Elementalist or a school are quick to move against them. Elementalist have very limited spell selections compared to other Arcanist but this does not hamper the class, like the Illusionist the Elementalist is a type of Hybrid class, they do not gain spell casting till 3rd level and are allowed a limited selection of weapons an armor.
Elementalist also gain the ability to summon elementals and other creatures tied to the elements, they however suffer from Burn, a backlash of elemental arcane magic that can kill a Elementalist if he is not careful.
Elementalist are also limited to the alignment of Chaos but can be of any moral range. They serve together in Covens that unite and shre knowlege with each other. These covens hold strict coded that bind all Elementalist together. No Elementalist will knowingly attack or harm another Elementalist. Doing so strips the Elementalist of his powers, reverting him to a Fighter.
"Tis pretty, me thinks I will keeps it, yes, keeps it till I sells it."
Thief Truthfully besides the Fighter nothing much changes for the thief, I have toyed with the idea of allowing Thief Acrobats from the UA book as they seem to be a early "prestige" class, and I have always like the class. It might be that I create two paths for Thieves to follow, an Acrobat path or a Thug path, the choice to be an Acrobat, stay a Thief or become a Thug given to the player at 5th level. I also really like the percentile tables for skills, and I think that if I do the "skill" thing in Ganth I may look into doing them like that. Most thieves belong to the Order of Fit a almost global criminal organization, however local thieves guild exist at some level. The Order of Fit, tends to look the other way as long as the thieves guilds do not start dabbling into uniting in a way that would create any real competition for the Order.
Acrobats tend to belong to traveling groups of entertainers as these groups usually hire thieves to "enhance" the earnings of the group. These thieves tend to lean more to the Good spectrum of Morality and have a almost dashing ne'er do well attitude.
Bandits and Brigands attract thieves that eventually become Thugs. Thugs tend to lean more towards combat arms and defense, and less on practical thief like abilities.
"Sing a pretty song, Sing it all day long..."
Troubadour No, no bards, Troubadours, yes but no Bards. Can they use magic? No not really. They can cast cantrips, 0 level spells and such to help with their stories, poems and epics, but no magic missiles.
They have a few thief skills and and the same limits to armor, but they don't really have the same level of combat strength as the thief. I really don't know if they will stay a player class.
You will notice I was running out of steam towards the end, proof I always bite off more than I can chew. Not unlike this task, what with redoing all these old articles. So Re-skinning is the answer, changing the way a class feels even though they may be very similar. This will give my setting the "feel" I want it to have.
I also want to point out at this time I was still toying with Racial Classes. No I am not going down that road. I have to set limits and that is a big one. Racial classes are really great, don't get me wrong, but for sanity's sake I just can't do them justice.
Other than cleaning up some spelling I have left these two articles roughly intact. They are a good base for my ideas and I want to expand on them and clean them up in a newly written article coming up next.