So at this point, I’ve had some people rolling up new characters – at the moment my son and my spouse. I want to run a bit of AD&D again and get the hang of it before I run the game for the whole group again (plus, they all seem to be enjoying Victoriana).
My son has a human Archer-Ranger and an elven Fighter/Mage, both of these have forced me to nail down some of those nebulous rules that I half-remember from the old game, but also simply decide how I want to handle some things in the game going forward – like cantrips and elven racial abilities. It also gave me the impetus to decide how much money people started with. His elf is Upper Middle Class and started with a fair hunk of change.
My dear spouse actually rolled fantastic for her characters stats – somewhat against tradition for her. Her character’s are a human Psionicist/Monk and a human Cleric. She’s wanted to a play an AD&D monk for years, and never had the stats to do so, and never quite managed to do it the home-brew systems I’ve been using the last sixteen years. She’s also never really played clerics before, certainly not ever in my game (though she is playing an Aluminat Priest in Victoriana now that I think of it). Religion is a pretty powerful force in my game world, and the religions of her Monk and her cleric are somewhat like playing a Catholic and Anglican – both Christian, both recognizing the legitimacy of the other, but having some significantly different perspectives on practice. Her cleric also rolled up Lower Upper Class for social class and I’m letting her start off as a dual class with a 1st-level Fighter (she also starts with a fair hunk of change).
That’s one of the those House Rules I had instituted many years ago for humans – High Social Class (and often upper Middle Class) Mages and Clerics were often also trained as fighters because of the social expectations involved. Lower Class characters in general were often allowed to dual class as a Thief (possibly a fighter if that is what they preferred and could make a good argument). For one, it gave Mages a significant edge when it came to survivability, and it also solved the whole “mages don’t use swords” issue. Sure they do, if they were trained to…
I also rolled up a couple of NPC’s for the group as well for back-up. I wanted to make sure that they had decent healing so I did a human Psionicist/Healer (ala the old Dragon magazine Healer) – who coincidently rolled Lower Lower Class and ended up dual-classed as Thief – not at all how I was thinking of that NPC – and a elven Duelist/Diabolist/Thief. Again, the Duelist ala the old Dragon magazine Duelist, while a “Diabolist” is something along the vein of the old White Dwarf Demonist. I was originally going to have the character be a simple Mage, but I don’t want him to steal the thunder of my son’s Fighter/Mage – and this sets up some interesting potential conflict between this NPC and the spouse’s characters.
I’ll see about possibly roping one more player into testing, but at the moment this is a pretty good start of an adventuring group that should let me figure things out with a minimum of fuss and get my feet back on the ground. The two elves gave me the charge I needed to figure out a couple of niggling campaign details that have eluded me for some time now, and I’m happy with the result – and everyone seems to be pretty happy with what they have.