John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey

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Mental Exercise... [gaming geekery]

So, suppose for the sake of discussion you were going to build a mystery/horror game using SWSE's d20 implementation as a basis, albeit a very loose one. What would you do for classes? d20 Modern's "Strong Hero/Fast Hero/Smart Hero (etc.)" method, while flexible, has all the flavor of a cardboard tube, and Cthulhu d20's two class options ("Offensive/Defensive") are even duller.

Forgoing for the moment the exact talent trees associated with the specific classes, here are some archetypes that might work. What do you think?

  • Adventurer: Action-oriented heroes, whether acrobatic and quick-witted, or your big, brawny, bruiser type. Not much use against the Colour From Space, but good for roughing up stoolies and blasting zombies with a shotgun.
  • Scholar: Antiquarians, professors, psychiatrists — the brainy character who knows that the cultists come from the last outpost of Hyperborea and can decipher the runes that will send the gibbering horror back to its home plane.
  • Shadow: Sneaks, rogues, private investigators, secret agents, thieves. Anyone who specializes in operating unseen and undetected, for good or ill.
  • Socialite: Celebrities, wealthy dilettantes, big-name authors. People with connections who can get you into the opening night at the museum, charm the surly steamboat captain into continuing down the forbidden river, or at the very least finance the journey.
  • Visionary: Psychics, bohemian artists with uncanny powers of perception, mysterious fortune-tellers.

Have I missed any likely suspects? Multiclassing would be free and easy, enabling the combination of classes to create other archetypes. A "psychic investigator" would be Shadow/Visionary for instance, while somebody like Indiana Jones would be Adventurer/Scholar.

Or are these too many? I could fold "Scholar" and "Visionary" into a single class, for instance, probably as well as "Adventurer" and "Shadow" without too much difficulty. But the idea is to provide a fairly broad selection of choices.

-The Gneech
Tags: gaming, s&s saga, uncanny midnight tales, yog-sothothery
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