Tabletop RPG: Concept Matters

Concept matters. Well, it's a simple statement but it's true. Let's look at making a player character.

System: Pathfinder/D&D 3.5

My current tabletop character is a human warlock, converted over from D&D 3.5 to Pathfinder. Only a few tweaks in the skill department and hit die department. How does concept matter here? Well, a strong concept informs what choices I make in building and growing the character. Warlocks are sneaky gits with unlimited blasting ability (as long as they don't get into an Anti-Magic Field), so I decided to build a spy-theme warlock. Which means he probably had some martial training, so I made sure he was trained in the use of medium armor and greatswords. Since I was starting at level 4, that meant I could also have him trained in using that medium armor without interfering with his spellcasting.

Warlocks have a really limited set of spells they can pick from. They have their default Eldritch Blast ability to shoot magic beams of death, naturally. At 4th level I had three picks and I made sure they fit the sneaky Warlock theme. I picked a perception/language comprehension ability, arrow deflecting/trackless step power, and the ability to channel Eldritch Blast into melee attacks. Later on I'd pick up an invisibility power and short-range teleport power to support the spy warlock idea.

The skillset for Warlocks isn't diverse, but fortunately Pathfinder did away with the cross-class cost that was in D&D 3.5, so I could spread out the skill points more to model the spy warlock idea better. He ended up emphasizing some of the more physical skills such as acrobatics, hiding, sneaking around, but he also had some wilderness survival and disguise skills. Being a highly magical type, his best skills were naturally in the those realms: Knowledge Arcana, Spellcraft, and Use Magic Device. UMD is pretty handy if you're a spy type, since it means you can /try/ to use just about any magic thing you can lay hands on; it's especially useful for warlocks.

Equipment was somewhat simple. A breastplate for protection, a greatsword to throw people off, and a magical dagger. At this point I tried to think what else a sneaky agent type could use. Well, a bag of holding is always useful, especially if you need to steal something important from the bad guys and make a quick getaway. Then mundane stuff like bedroll, lantern, civilian clothing, rations, and rope.

And now there you have Anton Berith, ex-special agent to the throne. Eventually he'll pick up Craft Wondrous Item so he can make his own gadgets.
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