Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Skitters Pooterbottoms the Gorebarian

So recently I had been asked to be a Barbarian in the Dungeons and Dragons group I've been a part of for awhile now. We play every Saturday for a few hours, and usually have a lot of fun. Last week we started a fresh campaign after I had ran an adventure for quite awhile, the one that I based off of the novel I'm writing.

My new character is named Skitters Pooterbottoms. He's an Orc Barbarian who is also a southern redneck hick. Do you see the parallels? One of the Barbarian's starting "skills" is illiteracy. Orc's have reduced charisma and intelligence. He talks with a thick, infectious southern accent. He's the perfect walking, talking, southern stereotype in the body of a big green monster who gets super pissed off and smashes things with his hittin' stick.

And he's REALLY FUN to play as. He gets mad and then just crushes everything. But this is large part due to how I role play him. A Barbarian is supposed to play a specific role in combat, and he sort of stays so focused later on that he just can't compete with the other classes. Wizards and Sorcerers, for example. Nobody can even touch them at higher levels. And I despise the fact that you really have to munchkin your character if you're a Barbarian to make him viable. I don't want to multi-class a Barbarian/Fighter/Rouge/Warblade/Jizzmopper. That's ridiculous, and not in the awesome way, in the "Watch me jerk off nerd seaman into my own mouth because I can kill everything and everyone in the room why don't I just take over the world" way.

I mean, don't get me wrong. I am a nerd, and I love and embrace nerd culture, but some people just become embarrassingly obsessive over things. And I know there are lots of people who love min/maxing their character to reach maximum optimal killing power, but I don't enjoy it. Period. I love having fun.

And thus, the Gorebarian class was born. I wrote it up on a whim, and it's actually the first class I've ever created for D&D that I finished and felt really satisfied with. I'm awaiting more feedback on it, but I feel like it does exactly what I want it to. It takes the fun aspect of scoring criticals in Dungeons and Dragons and amps it up 20 notches. It makes it so the Gorebarian can score them more often, and when he does so enemies EXPLODE in a shower of gore and entrails. And all of his abilities increase in power as the Gorebarian increases in level. Here is a link to the forum post where I'm asking for criticism:

I guess I just feel like the Barbarian class is very unsatisfying, and a Barbarian is supposed to be satisfying because he crushes and destroys all in his path. I get that he's supposed to be based off of Conan the Barbarian, but I actually haven't watched that*, so when I see this character who's supposed to be an angry meat wall with a weapon who stomps on things and growls has these skills that detect traps and gives him immunity to backstabs I'm just left wondering why. Also, he eventually gets Damage reduction, which makes sense because as the Barbarian gets stronger, he gains the ability to ignore being hit. Like all those movies where the dude get's punched in the face and smiles afterwards. But the Damage reduction of the Barbarian isn't that great, and doesn't stack with armor. What?! Then what is the point? You want to wear armor, because it gets you a bonus to AC, so it's not like this is giving you freedom of movement or the ability to go without armor if that's what you'd prefer. It's just a pointless, underwhelming ability. If it stacked, I could see it being useful. If they don't want it to stack, they should've made it better. Maybe doubled it. I don't know.

Anyway. That's enough for today.

* - I have not seen Conan, and I know that makes me a bad nerd, but really I'm pretty sure looking at the poster says it all. A young Arnold Swarchenegger walks around in loin cloth and murders things. Eventually there's an evil dude, and he gets murdered too. The end.

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