I just got back from one of my first pre-game chats with a player in an upcoming game. I am going to run in the Endamon setting city of Crimson. After reviewing the background I have come up with the setting we came up with a few ideas…
Player Profile – Ness
Profession: Inspirational Business Coach
Game Style: Immersive Roleplayer/Storyteller
Experience: 20+ Years, Multiple Systems and MMORPGs
Gaming Drives: Sense of Uniqueness. Secret Knowledge. Shared Backstory. Effective Simplicity.
Building on the Drives:
Sense of Uniqueness – Ness loves to feel like her character is unique. We instantly think about the races and classes we have selected for Endamon and in particular the city of Crimson. As a reminder our “rough” of racial commonality in Crimson:
Humans (Imar>Omal>Xuril) > Dwarves > Fetchlings > Gnomes > Halflings > Elves > Half-Orcs > Half-Elves >Other Non-Core races.
As we review the options I explain what is different about a few racial situations and Ness gets the twinkle in her eye. The elves of the northern wastes are rare in Crimson. I clarify the history of their homeland’s history and the situation of the dual Shards of the White and Black mosaic mage groups. She asks me again how mosaic mages work and immediately is uninterested in the diverse and COMPLEX options they present. In our permissive group, mosaics can often have hundreds of spells of every level to look at and she just isn’t interested in the play-style. She does like the Shards and the elven backstory.
Reviewing classes we pass by most of the core four and most of the Pathinder Core Rulebook classes. Rogue gets a brief discussion because of the settings default of less violent, more romantic rogues, the challenge is appealing to her. The Advanced Players Guide gets a bit more love due to the prominence of the oracle to the society. Thematic similarities to an older character and a desire to get her hands on something new she asks me to repeat the summary of the edgewalker class. Instantly she sources the similarity of the powers of the class and the Shards of the elven lands. After she comments on it I smile and realize we are at the character base she is going to play.
Secret Knowledge – Knowing this is important to Ness I consider the edgewalker and their place in society. It seems likely that a tidal-energy shard manipulator is pretty rare and may even have ties to Endamon, the Sun Goddess, and the God of Secrets–all things not exactly popular in mainstream society. It is seeming fairly likely that Ness is playing a member of a complex and highly secret group that tempts both powers, light and dark, and runs the risks of enemies from every side. Exactly the sort of character that Vanessa will enjoy.
Shared Backstory – Ness loves a shared story. It is a big part of why she games. Immersion is great but immersion with others who reinforce her character’s story is even better. We start to discuss this and I mention the feats designed in Heartbound Heroes. She hasn’t read it yet and I go into the mechanic concepts and story implications of sharing a heartbound bond with another character. She loves it. As we discuss it she starts immediately talking about other players that might want to try out the ruleset and gets ready to make some real life diplomacy checks to see if anyone wants to start out paired to her edgewalker.
Effective Simplicity – The edgewalker meets her criterion here almost perfectly. It has options but isn’t multi-source or overly complicated. The abilities are clean and simple to grasp but provide layered interactions that strike her as fun AND leave most of her feat selections open for heartbound options.
The Character Base
Ness has arrived at her concept, an elven edgewalker come from the North to bathe in Crimson’s energies in the hopes of starting a family some day. Her character will require another player or NPC with the heartbound set and she begins to have conversations with players to see if anyone is ready to give the romantic feats a try. Stat rolls and a pdf purchase or two and Ness is setting pencil to paper… and her horizonwalking elf takes her first breath.