flip-a-card

Flip-a-Card: Character Card Preview

December 29, 2019 - 2 min read

These aren’t the official cards - this is a preview of what I plan to create. My goal is to run this past a few people for feedback, before committing to the card creation process.

Origin

These cards tell us where the character is from, and what they tend to be good at based on their upbringing. None of these talk about “race” as traditional fantasy defines it. You can be a Northerner elf, or a Westerner orc. The cultural differences will tend to outweigh species differences. There’s an interesting Twitter thread here with more discussion.

  • Northerner: Snow-swept peaks and narrow valleys. You’re good with cold and have resilience.
  • Southerner: Fiery deserts and glittering oases. You’re good with heat and have conviction.
  • Easterner: Mysterious mountains and rivers. You’re good with earth and have patience.
  • Westerner: Islands and archipelagos. You’re good with water and have adaptability.
  • City Folk: Big cities, centers of knowledge and trade. You’re good with crowds and have education.
  • Country Folk: Villages, farms, and manors. You’re good with animals and have common-sense wisdom.
  • Forest Folk: Trappers’ camps and green silences. You’re good with plants and have sharp senses.
  • Scraplander: Haunted wastelands and blasted heaths. You’re good at salvage and cunning.

Role

These cards tell us what you’re doing today, and your goal as an adventurer. They’re not quite character classes. This is also the category where I have the least definition.

  • Fighter: Weapons, armor, and tactics. You’re good at combat and maneuver.
  • Explorer: Seeing, and surviving, the world. You’re good at traps and surprises.
  • Performer: Sharing, showing, teaching. You’re good at expression and empathy.
  • Protector/Guardian/Caretaker: You have people, places, or things you look after.
  • Student/Scholar/Trainee: Learning, observing, and understanding. You’re good with new tricks and remembered lessons.
  • Daredevil/Rogue/Outsider/Opportunist/Spy/Chancer: You’re an adventurer in the original sense, looking for excitement or danger.
  • Creator/Crafter/Synthesist: Making, repairing, and using things of all kinds.

Focus

This isn’t what you do, but how you’re about it. None of the options make you “a magic-user” or “not a magic-user” - an illusionist might get by on Charm, for example. Characters with a focus like Sorcery simply specialize in it.

  • Courage: You use guts, resolve, and bravery.
  • Charm: You use charisma, an honest face, or a silver tongue.
  • Instinct: You follow your feelings or your nature.
  • Wits: You’re clever, sharp-eyed, or quick-thinking.
  • Intellect: You’re smart, knowledgeable, or erudite.
  • Chi: You cultivate inner power, including martial arts.
  • Sorcery: You practice arcane magic, using spells, incantations, and runes.
  • Conjury: You wield holy or natural magic, the power of life and light.

Examples

Each of these was generated randomly.

  • Forest Folk, Student/Scholar/Trainee, Conjury: a woodlands druid-in-training, someone learning the ways of the forest.
  • Easterner, Protector/Guardian/Caretaker, Intellect: a keeper of a magical library, perhaps looking for an important lost (or stolen) book.
  • Southerner, Performer, Instinct: a dancer and perhaps religious devotee, possibly similar to a real-world Dervish.
  • Southerner, Fighter, Charm: a swashbuckler or duelist who likes sliding down banisters to engage with the villain in swordplay.
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