Friday, January 17, 2014

Careers of Thorn's Blackmoor: The Combat Specialist

One of the players asked for some information on how the various classes “fit” into the ‘modern’ Imperial society… but as we are using the Alternity Science Fiction Roleplaying Game, the idea of “class” is sketchy at best, and downright muddy if you want to try drawing direct parallels between it and (A)D&D.
“A career expresses the sum of a hero’s talents and training in a one or two-word label… In most cases, a career is synonymous with a hero’s dramatic occupation (what he does when he’s involved in an adventure).” Player's Handbook, page 30.
This is by no means a definitive list, but merely a jumping-off point. If you have a concept not covered here for the hero you envision to go tromping through the science-fantasy landscape of The North, by all means discuss it with your GM and collaborate to come up with the career you have in mind.
These sample careers are not iron-clad dictations on which skills you MUST choose if you wish to take that career. Again, these are suggestions, examples and starting points.

Combat Spec Careers

Already listed in the Player’s Handbook, a Bodyguard in Imperial Blackmoor is most likely working in the private sector. This can range from the burly brawler in the employ of a local gang boss to the mercenary on retainer attached to minor nobility or private celebrity of the age.
The bodyguard’s primary concern being the safety of another, these types of heroes are best to be prepared for just about anything.
Some possible skill choices include the Acrobatics broad skill, as the bodyguard can make the best use of defensive martial arts or dodge specialty skills to turn the tables on an opponent, or avoid taking hits in order to stay in action long enough to neutralize threats.
Signature equipment: CF short- or long-coat, comm gear (earring of whispers), sidearm of choice.
Skill Package: Unarmed Attack, Modern Ranged Weapons - pistol, Security - protection protocols; Awareness - perception. Cost: 21 points.

Law Enforcer 
Peacekeeper, townguardsman, Imperial Inquisitor, borderland constable… All of these types of jobs focus on crime prevention and maintaining the peace, safety and security of the citizens of the Empire, whether it be at the city, state, or national level.
Protecting and serving the people of the Empire can sometimes involve direct confrontation with those who would disrupt that peace. Any of the various combat skills will help in the event of the law enforcer having to meet such threats head-on.
Some law enforcers functioning as investigators should purchase ranks in the Awareness specialty skills, as well as Knowledge - deduce. Those of a more procedural bent can make good use of Computer Science or Medical Science broad skills, and one or more of the hacking, forensics, and psychology specializations.
Regardless of type, all law enforcers benefit from the Law and law enforcement specialty, as well as Street Smart and its specialty skills, criminal elements and street knowledge. A good law enforcer could also make use of the charm or intimidate specialties of Interaction.
FX Talents are usually recruited for special investigations divisions of law enforcement. The Hermeticism - ligature or sleep of Morpheus FX skills are ideal for criminal apprehension, while Mesmerism - befriend can be of use in extracting information from a suspect.
Signature Equipment: battle vest, stun baton, personal sidearm, earring of whispers.
Skill Package: Melee Weapons - bludgeon; Modern Ranged Weapons - pistol; Law; Investigate - interrogate. Cost: 30 points.

Though such weapons have been out of style since the First Crusade, the term has stuck for these soldiers for hire. Many are veterans of one skirmish or another, former military from any of the Imperial provinces or protectorates.
Part soldier, part businessman, the sellsword balances combat skills against a few business or interaction skills — those bullets don’t pay for themselves, and a sellsword who can negotiate the best price can afford the arms and armor to ensure that he lives another day to make another deal.
Signature equipment: Attack armor, rifle or submachine gun of choice, survival gear, earring of whispers, personal readingglass.
Skill Package: Armor Operation - combat armor; Modern Ranged Weapons - SMG or rifle; Interaction - bargain, - intimidate. Cost: 18 points

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