Steve Jackson Games - Site Navigation
Home General Info Follow Us Search Illuminator Store Forums What's New Other Games Ogre GURPS Munchkin Our Games: Home

Go Back   Steve Jackson Games Forums > Roleplaying > GURPS

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-30-2015, 01:27 AM   #1
Phantasm
 
Phantasm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: On the road again...
Default [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

I'll be starting a short adventure in my TL4^ Ranoc muskets-and-magery setting shortly, and I was looking at the idea of presenting players with a list of background lenses for their characters, something to help define where they came from.

I've come up with two lenses, but I'm open to others:

Town Guard (8 points)
Advantages: Guard Rank 0 [0]; Legal Enforcement Powers 2 [10].
Disadvantages: Duty to Town Guard (12) [-10].
Skills: Brawling (E) DX+0 [1]; One of Broadsword, Shortsword, Polearm, or Spear, all (A) DX+0 [2]; One of Crossbow or Guns (Longarm), both (E) DX+0 [1]; One of Guns (Pistol) or Shield (E) DX+0 [1]; Knife (E) DX+0 [1]; Savoir-Faire (Police) (E) IQ+0 [1]; Streetwise (A) IQ+0 [2]; Judo (H) DX-1 [2] or Wrestling (A) DX+0 [2].

Farmhand (0 points)
Disadvantages: Wealth (Struggling) [-10].
Skills: Animal Handling (Cattle or Equines) (A) IQ+0 [2]; Carpentry (E) IQ+0 [1]; Farming (A) IQ+1 [4]; First Aid (E) IQ+0 [1]; Teamster (Equines or Oxen) (A) IQ-1 [1]; Weather Sense (A) IQ-1 [1].


Comments? Other lenses would be helpful.
__________________
"But mom, I don't wanna go back in the dungeon!"

The GURPS Marvel Universe Reboot Project and its not-a-wiki-really web adaptation.
Ranoc, a Muskets-and-Magery Renaissance Fantasy Setting

Last edited by Phantasm; 10-30-2015 at 01:38 AM.
Phantasm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2015, 02:06 AM   #2
Peter Knutsen
Banned
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Europe
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrock1031 View Post
Comments? Other lenses would be helpful.
Former Job Lenses? Why not Culture Lenses instead?

Remember to include literacy or the absence thereoff (at TL4, literacy should explicitly stated on the character sheet). The norm for a Farmhand would be full (-3 points) Iliteracy. In fact that's the setting norm for all of TL4 and earlier (whereas Broken literacy might be the norm for TL5 for all I know).

And I think you're being very optimistic about a Savoir-Faire existing for TL 4 town guards.
Peter Knutsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2015, 02:19 AM   #3
Phantasm
 
Phantasm's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: On the road again...
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Knutsen View Post
Former Job Lenses? Why not Culture Lenses instead?

Remember to include literacy or the absence thereoff (at TL4, literacy should explicitly stated on the character sheet). The norm for a Farmhand would be full (-3 points) Iliteracy. In fact that's the setting norm for all of TL4 and earlier (whereas Broken literacy might be the norm for TL5 for all I know).

And I think you're being very optimistic about a Savoir-Faire existing for TL 4 town guards.
Cultural lenses are for the most part already accounted for in each nation's write-up. I was thinking along the lines of "what did you do before this adventure?".

And good point about literacy. I've no doubt the farmhands would be mostly illiterate, and even guardsmen would probably be semi-literate. I'll have to adjust.

And spend a few years working as a guard (or as a soldier, or a sailor, or inside any organization for that matter), you learn how to deal with your higher-ups.
__________________
"But mom, I don't wanna go back in the dungeon!"

The GURPS Marvel Universe Reboot Project and its not-a-wiki-really web adaptation.
Ranoc, a Muskets-and-Magery Renaissance Fantasy Setting
Phantasm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2015, 02:31 AM   #4
Atreyu_Hibiki
 
Atreyu_Hibiki's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Washington state.
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

You want GURPS Historical Folks, a collection of 116 templates of medieval professions, easily shifted into lenses. It can be downloaded here, along with the 3rd edition eBook it was updated from from: http://www.mygurps.com/ghf.html
__________________
Norman Tweeter Puppetry
and on Youtube.
Atreyu_Hibiki is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2015, 02:42 AM   #5
Peter Knutsen
Banned
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Europe
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbrock1031 View Post
And spend a few years working as a guard (or as a soldier, or a sailor, or inside any organization for that matter), you learn how to deal with your higher-ups.
At least if things are organized. Things at TL3 usually aren't, but things at TL4 might very well be. So good point. I sit corrected.



As for Previous Job Lenses, I don't know of any for GURPS (GURPs Historical Folks contains Templates, not Lenses), but if you can find a Warhammer Fantasy RP core book, I think you'd fine huge selections of medieval professions (well, more like TL4'ish than genuinely medieval) that you can use for inspiration, although you'll have to convert the skills to GURPS (and probably very loosely).



If I were to make a set of "previous job" Lenses for an action-adventuring TL3 or TL4 GURPs campaign, I think I'd go about it in a very systematic and rigid way, by assuming that it's always a "previous job" with the character no longer on active duty (thus Rank and so forth isn't needed), and always the exact same point and skill/trait structure, for instance something like this:

2 points in one Primary Skill
1 point in one Secondary Skill
1 Dabbler Perk split 2 ways between two Tertiary Skills
1 Perk representing a lasting benefit of the job, e.g. Courtesy Rank or a Perk-grade Contact

Thus all Previous Job Lenses would be exactly five points and would have the exact same structure, and I, wearing my worldbuilder hat, would be forced to work within the structure and make hard choices about which one (always one) skill to assign as Primary, and so forth (including only those four skills that are most likely to be retained after the character no longer holds the job that the Lens is based on). As a method to kickstart the creative process.

It also wouldn't be able to include disadvantages (such as lack of Literacy) or even most advantages, although if you define iliteracy as being the setting norm (that is, if you define everybody as defaulting to -3 Iliterate) then you could spend the "Perk" point on upgrading Iliterate to Broken (e.g. for a town guard officer).

You could also make the rigid structure slightly more flexibly by deciding to have both Minor Previous Job Lenses and Major Previous Job Lenses. Minor ones are structured as above and are 5 points, while Major ones could have a different structure and be 10 or even 12 or 15 points.

That way, a Minor Lens could be really mostly just flavour, while a Major Lens would be more expensive but also more likely to contain adventuring-useful stuff that is attractive to player (e.g. former Town Guard vs former Farm Hand).
Peter Knutsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2015, 03:06 PM   #6
jason taylor
 
jason taylor's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Portland, Oregon
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Adaptations of the historical worldbooks will suffice.

Another thought:

Border-scout:

Ambassador and/or Intelligence Officer of The Empire to wilderness area(analogous to Czarist Interpreter or Victorian Indian Political Officer).

Advantages: Area Knowledge, Patron(Emperor, or local noble/governor), contacts(local Imperial officials, native leaders, etc).

Disadvan:Hazardous Duty(Emperor's Service), CoH(officers, gentlemans, whatever), SoD(whoever), Social Stigma(gone native, or half-breed if the character has ancestors from the area)

Skills: Diplomacy, Cultural Familiarity, Survival(whatever type of terrain is in the area), Whatever fighting skills are appropriate,
__________________
"The navy could probably win a war without coffee but would prefer not to try"-Samuel Eliot Morrison

Last edited by jason taylor; 10-31-2015 at 10:41 AM.
jason taylor is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-30-2015, 08:35 PM   #7
Captain Joy
 
Captain Joy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Heartland, U.S.A.
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Atreyu_Hibiki View Post
You want GURPS Historical Folks, a collection of 116 templates of medieval professions, easily shifted into lenses. It can be downloaded here, along with the 3rd edition eBook it was updated from from: http://www.mygurps.com/ghf.html
To clarify (and agree that this is exactly what you want and most likely all that you need) you will be wanting the original 3rd ed. that includes good descriptive text and advice and the 4th ed. supplement that updates the templates.
Captain Joy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2015, 05:56 AM   #8
Peter Knutsen
Banned
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Europe
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain Joy View Post
To clarify (and agree that this is exactly what you want and most likely all that you need) you will be wanting the original 3rd ed. that includes good descriptive text and advice and the 4th ed. supplement that updates the templates.
I didn't know that. I think I've only ever looked at the 4E version, so that's very useful information (it's similar to how most if not all editions of GURPS Horror are rather different approaches to the subject, unlike the various editions of GURPS Space).

I maintain, though, that what is in GURPS Historical Folks is Templates whereas the OP asked for Lenses, and even for Background Lenses.
Peter Knutsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2015, 06:25 AM   #9
Captain Joy
 
Captain Joy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Heartland, U.S.A.
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Knutsen View Post
I maintain, though, that what is in GURPS Historical Folks is Templates whereas the OP asked for Lenses, and even for Background Lenses.
True, but many are of such a low point cost–plenty < 30 pts, several < 10 pts–they could be used as background lenses with little if any modification.
Captain Joy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-31-2015, 06:36 AM   #10
panton41
 
panton41's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Jeffersonville, Ind.
Default Re: [Fantasy] Any Background Lenses out there I can use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Knutsen View Post
(at TL4, literacy should explicitly stated on the character sheet)
You're thinking 3rd Edition.

Literacy is assumed in 4th Edition as a part of a character's native language. Illiteracy in your native language is, IIRC, a -3 Point Disadvantage that has to be specifically and deliberately taken.
__________________
The user formerly known as ciaran_skye.

__________________

Quirks: Doesn't proofread forum posts before clicking "Submit". [-1]

My ebook page.

Quote:
"My mace speaks Goblin." Antoni Ten Monros
panton41 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
fantasy, templates

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Fnords are Off
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 04:42 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.