Thursday, September 29, 2011

Archetypes Part 3: Cyran Noble

This archetype is also pretty vital to the campaign.  There could be any number of nobles at court who have befriended Oargev, with any combination of classes and some variety of races.  Accordingly, I had 4 of this card in my deck.

Archetype: Cyran Noble
Race: Human, Half-Elf (most common), Elf, Halfling, Changeling, Gnome, Dwarf, Half-Orc (less common)
Class: Any Martial, Arcane, Shadow, or Divine Class.
Religion: Sovereign Host (most common); Dark Six, Blood of Vol, Silver Flame, Spirits of the Past (less common)
Hook: You are a member of one of Cyre's noble families, perhaps even a distant relative of the royal family. You have been raised alongside the crown prince, chosen at a young age to be his life-long companion.  Your family owns land, employs servants, and has a tradition of military service.
Benefits: You gain Noble Protection and one other benefit:
     Noble Protection: As a noble, you are not held to quite the same standards as other Cyrans in legal proceedings. More can be forgiven, and your word is superior to the word of those from lesser stations. If you are recognized as nobility on the battlefield, sentient enemies would much rather take you hostage than kill you.
And one of the following:
Military Service: Gain proficiency with all military melee weapons, all military ranged weapons, any one superior weapon, or any one armor or shield (ignoring ability score prerequisites for the feat, but not other prerequisites). In addition, you have military rank.
Impressive Connections: In any sufficiently large city across Khorvaire, and anywhere in Cyre, you may roll a Streetwise, History, or Insight check to discover if there is someone in town with whome you are connected. The higher your check, the better the connection. The skill you choose to use will determine the sort of help your connection will offer (Streetwise: a merchant connection- benefits to buying and selling in town; History: a family connection- a place to stay, contacts in local society, formal introductions; Insight- Old Friends- a place to stay, contacts in regular society, active help in your affairs in-town.)
Superior Education: Choose 1: You gain +3 in one associated skill, all associated skills as class skills, +1 in three associated skills, or 2 bonus languages. Associated skills: Arcana, Diplomacy, History, Insight, and Religion. Also, you know a handful of gifted scholars and have established connections in one or more educational institutions.
Royal Family: As a member of the royal family, you hold even greater power than a regular noble. Your commands are expected to be followed and anything you say or do has some weight of law behind it.

Commentary:  This role has a lot to work with.  Mostly, they would be playing rather classic DnD races, and certainly would be able to play a huge variety of classes.  I left Psionics off of the list because I felt like it was too exotic for a Cyran lord to be involved in, and when I listed Any Shadow, the Vampire class was not yet out.  I would probably have discouraged that class, as it doesn't seem very good, and also screams Karrnath, not Cyre.  
     If I had only 5 PCs, I would have been happy with Oargev and 4 nobles for a few reasons.  First of all, with a selection of 4 pretty solid benefits, they could differentiate themselves.  Now, in retrospect, I am not sure they could differentiate themselves from Oargev particularly well, but I never ran into that issue.  I figured any of my potential PCs would be happy in this archetype, as they could play an arcane researcher and ritualist, a playboy adventurer, or a hard-boiled career officer.  They could play Eddard Stark or Littlefinger.  They could play any of the Knights of the Round Table.  While this wasn't quite the "play whatever you want" card, it was certainly the "play any mainstream concept you can think of, and a few off the beaten path with mainstream elements" card.
     I ended up with a PC selecting this archetype.  The tactics-loving leader player selected it because it let him play the power behind the throne.  He has decided to play Istav ir'Somme, nephew to the Queen's Consort and, therefore, cousin to the Prince.  He is a Half-Elf Bard who studied at Arcanix in Aundair, giving him many ties to that nation.  He is older than Oargev, and has been asked by the Queen's Council to act as the Prince's chief adviser.  Istav has a good bit of Littlefinger to him.  He is a machine when it comes to diplomacy and politics and is willing to be brutally honest with his cousin, Oargev, when he is about to make a fool of himself in either field.  He selected Impressive Connections as his benefit, but he has only used it once so far.   


  1. This archetype looks solid to me. Were I a player in this campaign, I'd be quite happy to play one of these.

  2. You'd totally take "Superior Education." Built in contacts with expert scholars? Seems your style.

  3. Well, sure, especially if I were playing an Arcane or Divine class. But I have played one or two brute fighter guys in my day. ;)

  4. How many Brute fighters have you played that didn't decide, eventually, decide to pursue something at least vaguely academic at some point? I guess a fighter with Plate for free or anyone with a free superior weapon is pretty tempting.

  5. Of long-term characters, two, I guess? Cassio never did turn all that scholarly (he would totally take Military Service), and Mirth (in Arcana Evolved) might take Impressive Connections, just to have an easier time connecting with his own people.

    I'll certainly grant that scholar-types are my comfort zone, though. =)