Wherein your humble scribe presents a trio of beginning adventurers for that most wonderful of early RPGs, The Fantasy Trip. As I’ve mentioned before, TFT is the game I played most (by a wide margin) back in the day. When the rest of you lot were busy taking your paladins and assassins against the giants or slavers (or whatever) in Greyhawk, the group I played with was busy running our heroes and wizards through our own adventures in homebrewed worlds like Erelandé, Greymere, and Trith. That doesn’t make me better than anyone, but it does make me very different than a lot of folks I’ve encountered in the OSR/geek blogging scene. There are a couple of retroclones of TFT out there (Legends of the Ancient World is the only one I’ve actually looked at), though, so I know I’m not completely alone.
Gathered together in the city of Lyros, the members of this trio of rogues have just finished up a month’s worth of work at the jobs they do when not questing for treasure. Joran’s employer docked him a week’s pay for an “incident” with another caravan guard, but nothing else serious befell anyone. What strange adventures might these three have in the coming days? Whatever trouble they get into will surely be played out on the hex grid of life (because people can move in more than four directions).
Joran of Rask (Human Hero)
Personality: Loud, friendly, and honest to a fault
Job: Mercenary Recruit Pay: $75 Risk: 5/16 Silver: $225
ST 11 DX 11 ( adjDX 10 ) IQ 10 MA 10 ( adjMA 10 )
Talents: Axe/Mace (2), Thrown Weapons (2), Shield (1), Horsemanship (1), Climbing (1)
Spells: Summon Wolf (3)
Equipment: 3 Small Axes (1d+1), Cloth Armor (1), Spiked Shield (1)
Ss’Kel (Reptileman Hero)
Personality: Taciturn, driven by a desire for knowledge, prone to complaining
Job: Builder Pay: $50 Risk: 3/18 Silver: $200
ST 14 DX 13 ( adjDX 11 ) IQ 11 MA 10 ( adjMA 8 )
Talents: Sword (2), Crossbow (1), Alertness (2), Missile Weapons (3), Architect/Builder (2), Literacy (1)
Equipment: Bastard Sword (2d+1/3d-2), Light Crossbow (2d), Leather Armor (2)
Gharli Fenth (Goblin Wizard)
Personality: Suspicious of others, greedy, sarcastic & mean-spirited humor
Job: Town Wizard Pay: $75 Risk: 4/17 Silver: $300
ST 8 DX 10 ( adjDX 9 ) IQ 12 MA 10 ( adjMA 10 )
Talents: Literacy (1), Charisma (4)
Spells: Sleep (1), Lock/Knock (1), Illusion (1), Confusion (1), Persuasiveness (1), Staff (1), Fireball (1)
Equipment: Wizard’s Staff (1d), Cloth Armor (1)
Sigh. I love me some Melee…
Have you seen Fenway5’s efforts at a retroclone type game over at http://heroworlds.blogspot.com ? I like it.
I had a hunch you might respond, Narmer, since I know you’re a fan of TFT as well.
I hadn’t seen this particular retroclone just yet, no. Thanks for the link – I’ll be sure to check it out!
Looking at the Job/Risk/Pay headings makes me think of the job tables in Gurps. Is that where it comes from? How did this get implemented in play?
Yes indeed, sir. Before he sucked all of the fun out of gaming with GURPS, Steve Jackson gave us jobs for adventurers in their downtime.
We usually did exactly what I was getting at above. That is, roll a month or two’s worth of job time (each roll representing one week) before play to determine our starting cash. The upside & downside of this was, of course, the risk table.
If you hit the low number (or lower) it indicated a “notable success” and you were instructed to “give the character just enough experience to raise one attribute.” Since experience in TFT was all about raising your attributes a point at a time this was a nice little bump for a beginning (or continuing, if we rolled in between adventures, which we sometimes did) character.
If you hit the high number (or higher) you were quite likely looking at a Traveller-esque “death during character generation” moment. On failing your job roll you got a 3d6 save vs. your highest attribute, which tended to be around 11 or so for most characters. Thus you generally had a 50/50 shot of escaping with just missing that week’s pay due to a mishap of some sort (as I interpreted in the above characters). But if you blew the save you not only lost your pay but you also suffered 4d6 damage. And since your ST was also your HP, well, this is where death tended to come in. Lastly (if you managed to survive the damage) characters whose job was of an illegal nature (petty thief, highwayman, etc.) you wound up in jail, which was its own brand of trouble.
That’s pretty harrowing, but a very flavorful way of handling experience rolls!
Yes indeed. We houseruled our way out of death during chargen pretty quickly, but we didn’t eliminate the penalties for failing entirely. It was awfully nice to get that extra stat point when a good roll came up, though.