Monday, May 10, 2010

The Future of Complete Characters

I make no secret about the fact that I view characters as the foundation of any good story. Setting, dialog, and even plot can all ultimately take a back seat if a reader cares about the characters in a story. Naturally, this extends to my more-than-weekly Complete Characters, each designed to inspire and create amazing gaming opportunities for players and Game Masters, alike.

The next stage of the Complete Characters project is drawing nearer and nearer, so here I am to spill some of the beans (including some example characters). Read on for more.

Complete Characters will soon not be limited to this silly little blog, but will be made available for download at for everyone to enjoy. The existing characters will all be ported over as free downloads, though you will also obviously be able to reach them from this site, where I'll continue to offer commentary on their development, answer questions, and take your all-important feedback.

In addition to more-than-weekly free downloadable characters, weekly Complete Characters will be available for purchase at DriveThru. These moderately-priced modules will be fully illustrated by top artists in RPG illustration, and will be packed with extra material over the free downloads to ensure that you're getting your money's worth.

What all of this really means is more Complete Characters. How can that be a bad thing, right?

All that said, I thought I'd go out on a limb and show you what I'm working on. Here is the tentative roster of the first six Complete Characters, in no particular order.

Small-Time Crime Boss. This an Irish immigrant living in San Francisco. Unable to find sustainable work in his underhanded trade in his homeland, he has crossed the pond, made for the West Coast, and established himself as a successful, but small time crime boss and black market dealer known for his grudge against the British. Joshua is designed as either a direct encounter or as a recurring contact.

A Medieval Assassin. This assassin is legendary for a number of reasons, ranging from his insistence upon remaining masked at all times in public, to his incredible fees, to the minuscule number of contracts accepted. Whether a character to play the role of an enemy, or to be hired on as an ally, this character should provide great gaming opportunities in any fantasy setting.

An Errant Knight. This knight in the service of a lofty noble during an extended wartime thrives in an environment where he is free to descend upon enemy militants, nobles, and commoners as a raider and thief. Due to his low social standing, he requires the spoils of this ongoing war in order to maintain his equipment, horse, and tribute to his master. This knight provides a twist on a classic encounter in fantasy gaming.

Veteran Cop. Some police officers have seen it all over their long careers. Either retired, or close to it, this character is killing time, waiting for his gold watch, and is a wealth of information to people who know how to ask over a drink or by slipping him a few bills. A great recurring character for any modern, horror, pulp, or any other gaming setting.

Bad-Luck Starship Captain. This transport operator has a sweet starship that is as space-worthy as any ever was, with tons of experience and open time on his schedule. The only problem is that some people, like the good captain, seem to be unlucky, and that makes them a liability. Crews are hard to come by and jobs are scarce, meaning this character is in need of both. Great for a one-off encounter for spacefaring player characters, or a setup for a whole campaign as a starship crew.

Super-Being Posing As Human. In an agency charged with monitoring and protecting the nation's citizens against super-beings, one fox has set up shop in the hen-house. From his position, and thanks to his unique powers, he is able to go about his business unmolested, as well as keep an eye on those doing the watching. A great resource for player characters in a supers game, or potentially a mastermind puppetmaster of a villain or anti-hero.

So, what do you think? Your opinions matter, and voicing them helps me to provide better products, both free and retail. I hope to hear from you here, or any time by email at


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