Tuesday, April 15, 2014

D&D EXPLAINED: STRENGTH

The fighter rolls his stats, and he plugs his highest number, 17, into Strength. He calculates his carry weight limit, his dead lift stat, his attack modifier, and what equipment he qualifies for. Does he think about what his strength really means? Usually no. Here’s a pretty good breakdown: 
8…
...is below average for most gaming worlds, but honestly is probably about where you, the gamer, would rank. You generally don’t do anything physical, and might even suffer from some medical condition. Tyrion Lannister (Game of Thrones) has about 8 strength.
10…
...is generally considered average, for somebody who doesn’t live on a computer. Think Luke Skywalker. Nobody is going to be terribly intimidated by you, but at the same time, you aren’t out of shape. 
12…
...is above average. Not unbelievable, but impressive. The hero might not be a professional athelete, but he certainly stays fit. Indiana Jones would be a great example.
14…
...is impressive, but believable. People in town will generally admire your brawn. You could hold your own in a fight; Jayne Cobb (Firefly) has about 14 strength.

16…
...reaches the limits of physical prowess. Townsfolk stop and stare. Provided your Charisma is high enough, the women swoon. Your life has been geared toward building muscle, and it is clearly evident to look at you. You are the Bowflex guy.
18…
...borders on unbelievable, but when people see you, they kind of have to. You don’t even accept challenges to arm wrestle, because you would win hands down. Your armor feels like a second skin, and you can easily piggyback the rest of your party. You look like Conan the Barbarian. 
Anything beyond this really looks about the same, and is the result of legendary training, magical enhancement, or benefits credited to gods or prophecy.

When you set your stats at character creation, think about how you justify them. If you grew up on a farm, why did you drive yourself to new muscular standards? What kind of physical training do you perform on a day to day basis? How has that regime impacted your life? Where will it end? 

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