Taking D&D Basic for a Spin: Elf Archer


In case you haven’t seen it, Wizards of the Coast has followed Kenzer & Co’s lead and released a bare-bones version of the new edition for free. Since we have decided to use it for the next season of D&D Encounters, I decided to make a few characters with it even though I’m planning to run next season.

If you are a regular reader or someone with whom I have roleplayed in the past, you know that I don’t really like class- or level-based games (which is why my love of HackMaster is so surprising), and that I always test new class-based games by trying to create Brianna, the main character in my first book and matriarch of most of the other characters. If you read my previous attempt with a playtest version of D&D 5e, then you know her history, but I’ll give you the Cliff’s Notes version here:

In D&D terms she’s closest to being an an old-school ranger (her tabletop debut was as a ranger in HackMaster 4e aka D&D 2.5), but has changed quite a bit as my world has evolved. She’s a Robin Hood level archer, but has access to elemental and healing magic. Her healing is primarily done by channeling magic through poultices she creates, thus multiplying their effectiveness. Her elemental magic manifests most often as arrows that ignite in flight, explode on impact, or the like.

Since my previous attempt in D&D 5e is the closest I’ve ever gotten to making her book version in a class-based game, I was actually pretty excited about making the attempt, despite how disillusioned I had gotten with the system as the public playtest proceeded. I’m sad to say that newest version can’t even get me close at level 1, but the multi-classing rules in the forthcoming Player’s Handbook may well do the trick. But here’s what I have using only Basic and at level 1:

Brianna Sheàri
Level 1 High Elf Fighter

Str 10
Dex 16 +3
Con 12 +1
Int 14 +2
Wis 14 +2
Cha 10

HP 12
AC: 14 (Leather armor: 11+Dex)

Initiative: +3
30′ move.
Low-light vision 60′
Languages: Common, Elf, Dwarf
Mage cantrip (race): Fire Bolt (+4/1d10 fire 120′ VS)
Saving Throw Proficiencies: Str, Con
Second Wind
Fighting Style: Archery (+2 attack with ranged weapons)
Skills: Medicine, Perception, Stealth, Survival
Tool Profs: Herbalism Kit
Background: Self-proclaimed defender of her home forest
* Feature: Reputation

Gear (77 lb)
Leather armor (10 lb)
Longbow (2 lb) +5/1d8 pi 150/600 Hvy, loading, 2-H
* Quiver (1 lb)
* 20 Arrows (1 lb)
Rapier (2 lb) +5/1b8+3 pi Finesse
Dagger (1 lb) +5/1d4+3 pi 20/60 Finesse, LT
Traveler’s clothes (2 g, 4 lb)
Herbalism kit (5 g, 3 lb)
* Forest-colored: +1 Hide in Shadows in forests
3x Belt pouch (5 sp, 1 lb ea)
Explorer’s pack (10 g) (50 lb total)
* Backpack (5 lb)
* bedroll (7 lb)
* mess kit (1 lb)
* tinderbox (1 lb)
* 10 torches (1 lb)
* 10 days’ rations (20 lb)
* waterskin (5 lb)
* 50′ hemp rope (10 lb)

Thanks to making up my own Background (since the four examples in Basic are all thoroughly unsuitable), all that’s really missing is healing magic, but if taking a level of cleric will give her a couple of spell slots and a 1st-level spell, then she’ll be reasonably close to the way I’m writing her. At that point the only thing she’d really need is another Wizard cantrip (Ray of Frost), and maybe a lightning one, if one exists. So it looks like I may actually be able to create her in a class-based game for the first time, but still not at first level.

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One thought on “Taking D&D Basic for a Spin: Elf Archer

  1. Pingback: D&D Basic Character #2: Human Fighter | Frankly Speaking

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