Gamemaster’s Guidepost: Dungeon Fantasy Apprenticeships

One of the things I rather liked about Dungeons and Dragons 3.0 was the “0th level” Apprentice rules. I got to thinking the other night…how could I do that in GURPS Dungeon Fantasy? I thought at first I could just use the Mixed Professions rules toned down…but then I had another idea…

Optional Rule: Races & Professional Power-Ups
Races have a listing for professions that compliment their innate capabilities allowing them to use both professional and racial abilities to their maximum. As a optional rule the GM can enhance this further allowing those who with a lens to freely purchase power-ups from his starting profession and his lens as long as it’s one of his choice professions. This comes at a cost however; he automatically must abide by the rules in Changing Professions (Dungeon Fantasy 3, p. 42). If the GM is using those rules, then he must not only meet the minima for the profession, but must be better. Add one to all the base requirements! For example, a winged elf barbarian would need a ST of 18, not 17. Note that this can get pricy for some professions. As compensation, human characters get to pick any one class they wish and treat that class as a choice profession for these rules!

Prerequisite: Special (see below).
Your character studied under another profession other than the one he starts with. This allows you to treat another profession as if it were your own for all purposes. This allows you to purchase skills, advantages, spells, or even power-ups (as long as you meet the prerequisites!). This comes at a price though, as a general power-up this is allowed to be purchased before game play, and indeed must be purchased then and only then (usually using points gained from Quirks). Furthermore, you must be able to meet the minimum attribute requirements for your profession at (listed level – 2);. Taken as a racial power-up it has the same requirements, but you may only purchase it for one of your choice professions. To compensate, you may pay for it from your profession’s advantages, lowered skills, etc. For example, you could have Apprentice Wizard, which would allow you to purchase, spells, Magery, etc., but you’d have to have a attributes that were at least two less than those listed on the template (e.g., you’d need at least a IQ 13).

The GM can forbid this perk if he feels it will complicate his campaign too much.
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  1. "Apprentice" is interesting – essentially, a Perk to let you break the "niche protection" wall and nab stuff from another template. (Or am I misunderstanding it?)

    I was also looking to build apprentice-level PCs for Fantasy, and went to work on some templates – before realizing that the DF 15(?) book, Henchmen, does just that. Good stuff in there; the 62-pt templates seem to be what I'd think of as a 0-level D&D character. (And I really like how the templates at that lowly level, or even the 125-pt level, are presented as barely belonging to a "class"; they're a bit bland, as befits a beginner before specialization, and can really be mixed and matched with just about anything, as befits a point-buy game.)

    Anyway, you're probably familiar with the book, but if not, check it out. Despite the name Henchmen, it's also great for low-level PCs, or for "building on" a low-level PC to create a high-level one.

    And thanks always for the fun articles –

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