Eclipse d20 – Killers, Diplomats, and Technomagi

   First up for today, it’s a trio of sample characters for Eclipse d20 – one human assassin, one half-orc warrior-diplomat, and one dwarven technomage. Why these? Simply because these were set up for other people according to their requests, and therefore are simpler and more direct designs; after better than thirty years of play, the characters I create tend towards the baroque. That also allows for a considerably more condensed format

   These characters were set up for a game which uses a condensed skill list. If they were using standard skills they’d probably want to go a bit heavier on the skills.

   Ergo, we have.

   Jarek Zindel

Level Two Human Assassin

   Jarek spent a good deal of time working for a mysterious guild of assassins – but then suddenly left that guild, for reasons that he has yet to reveal. The guild was not pleased – and upsetting an organization that specializes in locating people and killing them is rarely a good move. Jarek has opted to take up adventuring; his life expectancy can’t get much shorter now – and he might just acquire enough power to keep himself alive.

   If he doesn’t, well, at least it probably won’t be the guild which has the pleasure of killing him.

   Attributes: Str 12 (+1), Dex 16 (+3), Con 13 (+1), Int 12 (+1), Wis 14 (+2), and Cha 11 (+0).

   Basic Equipment: Longsword and Composite Longbow, Leather Armor.

   Level One

  • Available CP: 48 (L1 Base) +10 (Disadvantages: Secret/Mass Murderer, Hunted/Assassins Guild that he left, and Irreverent), +6 (Level One Feat) +6 (Human Bonus Feat) = 70.
  • Purchased: +1 BAB (6 CP), a d20 Hit Die (16 CP), 7 SP (Stealth 3, Survival 2, and Perception 2, 7 CP), Saves (Fort +2, Ref +2, Will +1, 15 CP), Proficient with light armor (3 CP), Proficient with All Simple and Martial Weapons (9 CP), Skill Focus/Stealth (6 CP), Additional +1 BAB Specialized/only with missile weapons, Corrupted/does not add to iterative attacks (2 CP), Augment Attack/+1d6 Damage when attacking with missile weapons from within 30 feet (a fairly common situation, given that the character is designed for it, but not quite at the “almost always” level, ergo 6 CP).
  • Total: 70 CP.

   Level Two

  • Available CP: 24 (Base).
  • Purchased: +1 BAB (6 CP), a d10 Hit Die (6 CP), 2 SP (Survival +1 and Perception +1, 2 CP), Saves (Will +1, 3 CP), Immunity/Penalties for Firing into Melee (Common, Minor, Minor, 4 CP), Change Specialization on BAB bonus with missile weapons to Double Effect rather than reduced cost (+2 CP).
  • Total: 24 CP.

   This is a reasonably solid adventurer character to start with; he’s very tough for level two and pretty good at supporting his friends from the rear. Personally I’d expect an assassin to have a few dice of sneak attack – but, to be blunt, starting a second level character off as a professional assassin and a “mass murderer” is a bit of a stretch to begin with; in normal d20, second level characters are generally young and inexperienced. If Jarek had been an assassin for very long, he ought to be well above level two. In any case, getting away with mass murder in d20 generally calls for being able to do enough damage to ensure a kill against a first level character in a single shot (about twenty points at a minimum) and some sort of protection against divinatory magic – or very powerful connections.

   For the future, I’d recommend working on picking up Evasive (so that he can use missile weapons in melee without provoking an attack of opportunity) and boosting that attack bonus with missile weapons to the full triple effect (or more). If the game is using them, adding a Martial Art is probably also in order. Thanks to his intelligence, he still has three unspent skill points anyway – so if the game is allowing the use of the Martial Arts skill, he can pick one up right away.

   Boran Nong

Level Three Half Orc Apologist

   Boran actually has a distant orcish ancestor, but is – as sometimes happens – a bit of a throwback. As they say (even if “They” make him want to rip someone’s head off), blood will tell.

   Still, it was an advantage in some ways. While Boran had to work hard on learning to be sociable and charming – to the point where he’s gotten better at it than most pureblooded human beings – his massive musculature and heavy bones have made it easy for him to learn to use large weapons.

   Given that he shows few other major aptitudes, that’s probably a good thing.

   Boran’s taken up adventuring because he wants to be rich, and powerful, and to achieve a high enough social position to make everyone that’s ever snubbed him because of his appearance choke on their old insults. If he lives, he may well pull it off.

   Attributes: Str 16 (+3), Dex 10 (+0), Con 11 (+0), Int 10 (+0), Wis 10 (+0), and Cha 16 (+3).

   Basic Equipment: Greataxe and Chainmail

   Level One

  • Available: 48 (L1 Base) +6 (L1 Bonus Feat) +10 (Disadvantages: Uncivilized, Obligations/Chivalry, and Broke) +2 (Duties to the local feudal lords) = 66 CP.
  • Purchased: +1 BAB (6 CP), d20 Hit Die (16 CP), 9 SP (Persuasion +3, Survival +3, Perception +3. 9 CP), Saves (For +1, Ref +1, Will +1, 9 CP), Proficient with Light and Medium Armor (9 CP), Proficient with All Simple and Martial Weapons (9 CP), Anime Master (6 CP), and +1 BAB Specialized in Melee Weapons, Corrupted to Greataxe only (2 CP).
  • Total: 66 CP.

   Level Two

  • Available: 24 (L2 Base) +2 (Duties) = 26 CP.
  • Purchased: +1 BAB (6 CP), d10 Hit Die (6 CP), 3 SP (Persuasion +1, Survival +1, and Perception +1, 3 CP), Saves (Will +1, 3 CP), Skill Focus +3/Persuasion (6 CP), upgrade +1 BAB Specialized in Melee Weapons to double effect (for +2), Corrupted to Greataxe only (+2 CP).
  • Total: 26 CP.

   Level Three

  • Available: 24 (L3 Base) +2 (Duties) +6 (Bonus Feat) = 32 CP.
  • Purchased: +1 BAB (6 CP), d10 Hit Die (6 CP), 3 SP (Persuasion +1, Survival +1, and Perception +1, 3 CP), Saves (Fort +1, Ref +1, 6 CP), Skill Emphasis/Persuasion (3 CP), Enhanced Strike/Whirlwind (6 CP), upgrade bonus with Greataxe to +3 (+2 CP).
  • Total: 32 CP.

   Boran Nong is a solid melee specialist with a sideline as the party diplomat. While he is quite focused on his oversized (large, 3d6 base damage) greataxe, he’s very good with that particular weapon – good enough to have a +6 BAB, and thus a second attack, with it at level three. Still, while he’s tough enough to work the front lines for a bit, his relatively light armor and lack of special defenses will catch up with him all too soon if he can’t take his opponents down quickly. At the moment, he’s best off using fast strikes and skirmishing.

   For the future? Boran’s pattern is pretty obvious. More hit dice, more BAB, devote a few points to keeping his social skills up to par, and pick up more special attacks and defenses.

   Rochar Lindolfsen

Level Two Dwarven Technomage

   Rochar is, in many ways, a generic adventurer. He showed a talent for Rune Magic early on – and decided to put it to use. Given that his primary magical knacks have to do with mechanisms and machines, he’s shown a notable affinity for roguelike pursuits – finding and disarming a variety of traps, opening locks, and rigging up various mechanisms.

   Still, he hasn’t neglected to learn a bit of healing and protective magic along the way, which makes him a welcome addition to most parties.

   Attributes: Str 11 (+0), Dex 14 (+2), Con 12 (+1), Int 17 (+3), Wis 13 (+1), and Cha 8 (-1).

   Basic Equipment: Toolkit, Thieves Picks and Tools, Heavy Crossbow and Daggers.

   Level One

  • Available: 48 (L1 Base) +6 (L1 Bonus Feat) +10 (Disadvantages: History, Inept/-3 penalty on Charisma-Based Skills, and Obligations/the his old master), +2 (Duties to the mages guild) = 66 CP.
  • Purchased: 2d6 Mana with the Resilience Natural Magic Option (12 CP), Rite of Chi with +2 Bonus Uses (9 CP), Adept (Half cost for the Technomancy Rune Mastery, Technomancy Rune Casting, Knowledge/Architecture and Engineering, and Disable Device skills, 6 CP), Fast Learner (Specialized in Skills for Double Effect, Corrupted/Only to keep Adept skills maxed out, 4 CP), Self-Development/+1 Intelligence for skill-related purposes only (6 CP), a d8 Hit Die (4 CP), Proficient with Rogue Weapons (9 CP), 10 Skill Points (Total: 26, plus maxed-out Adept skills. Rune Mastery/Abjuration 1, Rune Casting/Abjuration 2, Rune Mastery/Healing 1, Rune Casting/Healing 2, Craft/Metalworker 4, and 16 SP in other skills of choice – most likely a roguelike selection), and Saves (Ref +1, Will +1, 6 CP).
  • Total: 66 CP.

   Level Two

  • Available: 24 (L2 Base) +2 (Duties) = 26 CP.
  • Purchased: a d8 HD (4 CP), Saves (Ref +1, Will +1, 6 CP), +1 BAB (6 CP), +2 Bonus Uses on Rite of Chi (3 CP), Reflex Action/Three Actions per day Variant, Specialized/only for spellcasting (3 CP), and +4 Skill Points (4 CP).
  • Total: 26 CP.

   Like most rune mages, Rochar’s magical powers are at their best early on, when attribute bonuses still make a major difference in skill levels. He’ll fall behind the abilities of dedicated casters at higher levels – but, by that time, will probably be developing some decent rogue-style combat skills, boosted here and there with a bit of judicious magic. The main advantage of rune magic later on is that it doesn’t require a massive continuing investment to remain useful – just a few skill points and, occasionally, a few more Bonus Uses on Rite of Chi.

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