Tuesday, March 22, 2005

I live in a fantasy world. No! Really!

Janesville Dungeons & Dragons


This Character (Audible Capitalization added for emphasis) is spot-on the most fun character I have played. The DM for the game in which Fengwur 'lives' is a long-standing friend with tons and tons and tons of DM experience (like ten or more years for sure) and a penchant for letting players dig deep holes. He'll just cart away the dirt. Or, as is often the case, recruit a PC (or his human) to do the heavy lifting. So it can be a challenge. I like a challenge. Who doesn't?

Fengwur represents every essential factor to a successful D+D experience. Oh, I think I feel a list with bullet points on the way...


1. Well Rounded Character Idea: This is so important. Its great and everything to MINMAX the snot out of your Character, but, its the weaknesses, the not-so-good stuff that the player highlights during character creation which make the character real. These foibles are also where much of the humor in the game is borne. Y'see, an entire adventuring band of MINMAX characters aren't funny. Where's the personality? Fengwur, Ranger/Thief, second highest stat is Intelligence, then Wisdom. Constitution is a below average. Why? He's just a kid, but still a tenacious hunter and clever survivalist.

Fengwur lives in the deep forest. He was raised and subsequently abondoned there. He doesn't speak common and he despises humanity, square buildings, currency, hard-tack, and magical items. At the same time he is an excellent scout, brave warrior, determined team player for the greater good. Now, if he could only tell the rest of the group....

2. Passion to succeed through conflict: This might be my thing, and mine alone. But this ideal has never let me down. Roleplaying is about drama. An example, can you remember how much fun you used to have playing your favorite specialist Diviner who learned all the answers by staying in his tower all the time staring into mirrors? Of course not. Where's the excitement? Now, with Fengwur, he is brave but not all that effective in combat. And his overall objective is nigh-impossible for him alone to acheive (Temple of Elemental Evil story-line). He prefers unarmed combat and doesn't have much a damage bonus. This doesn't get in his way. He isn't really leadership material either but he is dogged in his determination to succeed, both in day-to-day situations and overall (i.e. drive the evil from the Gnarly Wood). An example, Fengwur often is un-armored and rarely in the front of the group. He is kind of small too so he can't really edge in the fray when it breaks out in confined spaces. Normally, it would take a round or two...not for Fengwur. If he can't climb onto a party member and jump over the rest to get into the fight, he will 'ask' someone nearby to throw him closer to melee. For better or worse, the other players see this. When they finish laughing, they know Fengwur is doing everything he can to win the day. Maybe they can too? Hey. If the illiterate, smelly, short, feral elf is willing to jump off my shoulder to fling himself into harms way, maybe there is a little something more I can do to help him (and the rest of the party).

That pretty much does it for me. Fengwur represents the extreme far end of my gaming philosophy as you can see. But these ideals are so important when sharing a fun, exciting game for everyone involved.

My two cents,


P.S. I will never make it into the Israeli Defense Force at this rate.
Israel, the land unrecognized by its neighbors. RolePlaying, fantasy hobby unacceptable to nearly all my neighbors.


Blogger talking.dingo said...

Hey hey. Got my nice nice D+D character sheet right here! I really dig this idea alot! Strong, flexible character with good abilities and challenging role to play in any group.


11:52 PM  
Anonymous Ken said...

Right on Dingo.

I'm the DM for the campaign in which Fengwur operates, and I have to say that Dingo's character development points are spot on. Follow his formula for success.

I say that with a single caveat: many campaigns that I have played in or run tend to suffer from an over-abundance of uniqueness, which frequently inhibits realistic and fun game play. It should be noted that Fengwur's rather bizarre character concept (feral naked elf) is incidental to Dingo's points rather than integral. That is to say, no DM wants a party comprised entirely of characters so outre in concept that they can't conceivably be worked into a campaign together. Play a fighter or something. =)

12:32 PM  

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