Thursday, January 29, 2015

Gamemaster's Guidepost: Delver, Get a Job!

Dungeon Fantasy very explicitly ignores the rules for jobs. It's about adventuring after all, not boring day to day life - that's for villagers. Still, Dungeons and Dragons (especially 2nd edition) had rules for working the forge or weaving baskets when your character wasn't adventuring. There's always the crafting rules from Dungeon Fantasy 2, but what if you want actual money instead of goods for services rendered, then use the following (abbreviated) job rules. Do note, that GMs should only use these rules for when long periods of downtime is called for - it should never displace actual adventuring!

The Basics
Use the standard rules for jobs with the following changes:
  • When determining what skill is used, let the delver use his best skill - even if the job description says otherwise - let them! Delvers with jobs are supposed to be shining examples of awesomeness.
  • When determining the monthly pay rate, use TL4, not TL3 for figuring income. Working a job should be at least moderately attractive.
  • Any job the GM says is open is allowed, but he should use TL4, not TL3 for determining what professions are available. GMs will find GURPS Low-Tech Companion 3: Daily Life and Economics to be highly use for populating his campaign's job list.
  • Instead of rolling once per month, instead roll once per time period of downtime. For example, if the GM says the players have to wait six months for the ice to thaw enough to go to the Cavern of Icy Doom, then any delvers who have professions make one roll for the entire six-month period. This is both good and bad; critical successes can bring in as much as a modest delve! Critical failures...well, they should be memorable. Optionally, make no rolls and use a base roll of 11 when determining if a job roll has succeeded or not.
  • The GM should let all characters pick one job, and one job only - even if they have the skills to perform multiple professions. He gets one and that's it. The sole exception to this might be the innkeeper who by dint of his profession gets a "job" free and may choose another one if he so wishes
  • Ignore the rules for Wealth or Status (even if the GM is using Traits for Town). If the GM feels this is too generous, he can charge a leveled perk, "Useful Trade," with each level allowing access to a job of one Wealth level higher (cumulatively) than Average. For example, if a bard wants his job to be Moneylender (Low-Tech Companion 3: Daily Life and Economics, p. 49) in his off-hours he could charge 2-points for a "Useful Trade (Moneylender)" oerk
  • Job rolls can only be attempted if the delver has at least a month of uninterrupted time. Optionally, the GM may allow rates other than monthly. Multiply final pay by x0.5 for bi-weekly rates, x0.25 for weekly rates, x0.04 for daily rates, and x0.005 for hourly rates.
  • Don't forget to subtract the $150/week for staying in town from the final amount!

Example: Melisande the Magnificent is a wizard with a penchant for Alchemy. Since the GM is using job rolls for downtime in his campaign he allows Melisande to make a single roll against Alchemy for the next three months as the adventuring party restocks and plans their next move. The GM is using the Alchemist job from Low-Tech Companion 3: Daily Life and Economics, but has exchanged Alchemy for Chemistry to better suit his campaign. Since Melisande's best skill is her Alchemy she rolls that to determine how well she performed as a alchemist over the 3-month period. Rolling her skill of 18, she gets a 8. Since alchemist is a freelance job she increases the amount she earned by 10% per point she succeeded effectively doubling her monthly income - which she then multiplies by three for the time period. This grosses her $750 (base rate) x 2 (freelance multiplier) x 3 (number of months) = $4,500. Since Dungeon Fantasy charges $150/week to stay in "Town" she nets $2,700, not a bad amount!

Picking Over the Bones
Since you only get one job, each delver better pick one that maximizes his skills. Even so, why bother? gives you a way to earn money so you don't starve while waiting for your next delve. It also adds flavor to your character. *beats orc to death* "You're a teacher?" "Part of the time." What's more it can be the perfect way for a GM to get his (plot) hooks into you. "While working your forge late at a night a half-dead dwarf stumbles into your shop and whispers "Here. Take it. Don't let them get it..." before handing you a box and then dying." There is no particular reason why delvers could not hold more than a single job at a time other than it'd slow down play. If the GM likes he can allow multiple jobs or charge a Useful Trade perk a piece.

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