Monday, May 2, 2011

T is for Tunnels and Trolls

The other interesting thing that's happened over the course of this finals week was joining up with Scott from Huge Ruined Pile's online Tunnels and Trolls game. I was following the increasingly awesome Idrizoob posts and when the call for players came out, I couldn't resist.

Cue my first experiences with Tunnels and Trolls. I had heard about its more simple and lighthearted approach to dungeon crawling fantasy from bloggers like Scott and Tenkar, but I'd never encountered the game at all. By the time I started searching for RPGs in game stores in 1998 or 1999, Tunnels and Trolls was a fairly obscure and presumably out-of-print game. However, I think I probably would have liked it a whole lot at that age.

First of all, it's definitely a simple system, but not as bare bones as I thought it was going to be. I spent a whole lot of time outfitting my three characters (Rogue, Warrior and Wizard, respectively) with effective equipment, which was fairly hard to do with limited attributes and funds. I was engrossed in the equipment list, with its pages of oddly named knives and polearms (even more than 1st ed AD&D!) and separate pieces of armor and equipment. I also seriously appreciated the inclusion of Delver's Packs, a grab bag of useful dungeon items all bundled together with a single weight and cost like D&D Gamma World's Explorer's Kits. I haven't seen anything of what the game is like in play, but I really enjoyed making my characters.

Bonus! Here they are for all you T&Ters. Let me know if I did anything wrong.

Dax Coitus
Level 1 Rogue

ST 9 IQ 17 LK 11 CON 13 DEX: 7 CHA: 16
Adds -2 Encumbrance 304 /900
Armor: Leather Armor (6 Hits taken, 200u)
Weapon: Misericorde (2d6+1, 14u),
Gear: Clothing and Pack (10u), Delver’s Package (20u), Provisions for 1 day (20u), 10 ft. of hempen rope (50u)
Wealth: 0gp

For every gem stolen, secret uncovered or princess bedded, there must always be a responsible party. Dax Coitus may not be that party in all cases, but chances are he’ll tell you that he was. An inveterate liar, boaster and con-man, Coitus is generally regarded as a decent thief and a great talker. Surprisingly enough, he also conceals sizable magical potential, though he still hasn’t gotten the hang of the gestures.

Level 1 Warrior

ST 14 IQ 14 LK 8 CON 10 DEX 10 CHA 16
Adds +1 Encumbrance 510/1400
Armor: Full Helm (3 Hits taken, 50u), Gauntlets (2 Hits taken, 25u), Greaves (2 Hits taken, 40u), Target Shield (4 Hits taken, 300u)
Weapon: Trident (4d6+3, 75u)
Gear: Provisions for 1 day (20u)
Wealth: 0gp

Dax paid for Umanzor’s freedom after witnessing his talents in the arena. When the gladiator school refused to release him even after accepting Dax’s ill-gotten gains, the con-man had to find another solution. After the judicious application of two blowgun darts, a vial of acid and the best lockpick in the city, Umanzor was free to go as he pleased. He’s been by Dax’s side ever since. In the taverns of Idrizoob, he is well-known as a kind and soft-spoken individual. But his sweet talk dries up when he dons his full-face gladiatorial helmet, replaced with steely resolve.

Elisara Valiasto
Level 1 Wizard

ST 10 IQ 15 LK 8 CON 8 DEX 11 CHA 7
Adds -1 Encumbrance 125/1000
Armor: Arming Doublet (3 Hits taken, 75u)
Weapon: Baton (2d6, 20u)
Gear: Clothing and Pack (10u), Provisions for 1 day (20u)
Wealth: 5gp

Accused of perverse witchcraft in her puritanical home city, Elisara escaped a horrific death in the Umber Pits and began traveling with a caravan as a fortune teller. Of course, her predictions were all made up on the spot, but when you can create your own glowing crystal ball, people tend to believe you. Once she reached Idrizoob, her fortune telling opportunities dried up, as its residents were both more cynical and magically adept than her previous clientele. Her current position is as magical tutor to Dax, which pays the bills and that’s all she would like to say on the subject.

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