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Old 09-18-2018, 07:05 PM   #34
baakyocalder
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Sacramento metro, California
Default Re: Lifepaths in Faaantasy!!!

A couple of books I use:

Fantasy Character Generator Toolkit by Great White Games (2004 product). Officially for Savage Worlds, this gives you a bunch of random rolls for social class, family, childhood, adolescence and professional events. It gives skills in Savage Worlds.

Kingdoms of Kalamar Player's Primer by Kenzer & Company. This is specific to their campaign world, Tellene, of which the Empire of Kalamar is a major political entity. You've got family background, random religion rolls, random crafter rolls and random class rolls.

I no longer use them, since I sold the books, but the HackMaster class guides for the AD&D version of the game such as the Combatant's Guide, Griftmaster's Guide, Spellslinger's Guide and Zealot's Guide have background generation tables for the class groups. You've already chosen your race and class-these tables tell what happened during school days and do impact your character. In the Combatant's Guide, your character can get shot in the eye by a crossbow and go blind or die in a battle. In the Griftmaster's Guide, your thief or other character in the thief group (includes bards and ministrels) can be beaten to death after rolling an 'incarceration event' and then rolling poorly on that table. The cleric can get assigned to a poor location and have weak faith, making them a lesser cleric or they can witness a miracle.

In the current version of HackMaster, there are also background tables for family and social class, but not much. You get some bare bones and then fill it out. So, I use the other books for ideas on developing out characters. Well, and if I have no idea where a character came from, I have d10000 tables for each of the 6 regions in the Player's Primer to roll for a character of that race would likely live in that region.

There are a lot of characters who grew up in rural areas, but that works for a zero-to-hero game where PCs must pay points to be anything other than one of the lower social classes (LLC, MLC and ULC for those playing AD&D).

So, think of lifepaths less mechanically and more, well, I've got a fighter of this race. What makes them more than their class and race and powers selection?
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