|Typical view when your |
ribs are screwed up
I spent a few days laying on my back trying to decide what to do that day. My choices were sort of limited to sitting, laying down or standing. I had no patience for drawing or painting owing to the profound lack of sleep. Standing is Darien Lake's wave pool was soothing but nerve racking because there was a serious danger of drowning when the waves started up.
I decided to write a book. The first thing that popped into my head was something for D&D. I had some old character sheets lying around from a decades old campaign. In that campaign, I had 3 players write "chemist" under non-weapon proficiency. Three different bids to get their characters TNT or at least gun powder.
Yeah, no. That did not fly.
Then I realized that I actually had a bunch of great ideas for non-weapon proficiencies. In the previous semester at school, I found great book called Everyday Life in Early America which seemed to mirror my thought process. People have skill sets. A weapon proficiency is the ability to use a weapon, a specific item, with a specific set of skills. A profession is more than a singular skill, but less applicable to adventuring.
D&D and AD&D does not call these extra abilities skills, they are called "non-professional skills" meaning that they have nothing to with the character's current class. But they aren't really quantified.
I quantified those abilities in Zero to Hero: Uncommon Commoners. I built a list of 50+ different professions from history, broke them into three categories and then defined what each could do.
One of my pet peeves from D&D is the lack of a "shared world" from outset of a game. I had people looking at characters sheets and declaring that their ranger couldn't swim, but had a recipe for dynamite. Yeah, BS. What do you mean a ranger can't swim? That isn't a skill I want you rolling against. If I'm gonna kill you, it won't be with a bunch of die rolls to see how long you can tread water.
By allowing someone to select from this long list of professions, characters gained depth. And a smidgen of hit points and a whole set of ancillary skills which were had some semblance of reason assigned to them. It stands to reason that a trapper can set a trap, a farmer knows a bit about cobbling junk together to get stuff done and cook can identify plants and build a proper fire.
The ability to make a rutabaga pie isn't going to buff your character, but it could make for interesting role play. On other hand, some tools are killing machines. But there is a reason why they aren't used as weapons. It's very hard to do carpentry or woodcutting after someone has killed a person in plate armor with your axes.
Some of these skills are immediately pertinent to characters. If my cleric was a chef, why don't I use knives in combat? Because that is something you choose to forego, it doesn't mean you can't throw knives at a bulls-eye. Can my wizard use a small hammer (1d4) because he is former mason? Sure, but he has to give up one other weapon.
These professions add to each character, without overly unbalancing a game.
Well, this is much more than I meant to post, but this is why what is happening on the back end of my site. If I mean to keep producing products, there has to be some data tracking to see what other think, which I will put into some of my future works.
I also need to build a base, so please take a moment to follow me on Facebook, MeWe or Pluspora.