Monday, February 6, 2012
Note: This post is one part rant, and one part constructive response to the rant.
I've been reading on Enworld quite a bit lately. Yeah, I know. Not quite the hub of the Old School Renaissance, is it?
When I read posts there, I'm struck by the breadth of the D&D experience, specifically across the editions - and, at times, how little we have in common.
One of the things that I know is completely perspectival, but still bugs me, is the god-damn "adventurers are heroes" crap. I realize that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but that doesn't mean that I have to agree with it. Part of the reason why the "hero" thing bugs me is that it connects to all sorts of broader discussions about play-style, edition preference, and the influence of Hollywood fantasy/sci-fi films in tabletop gaming. These are usually the same folks who claim "cinematic action" is a necessity of tabletop gaming. I don't lay blame at their feet solely. To some degree it's generational and it's what they've been told to expect in word and image from WotC and others.
That being said, here's my take on the perception of adventurers:
In my game, adventurers are considered from a low fantasy point of view. They are scruffy and morally ambiguous. They might actually do "good" on occasion, but that wouldn't necessarily be done for its own sake. More often than not it happens to be coincidental to treasure seeking. In addition, adventurers occupy a unique social position much like gladiators in Ancient Rome. Adventurers are both lauded and despised by society. They are despised because adventuring is the act of desperate men (or women). Only those on the social and economic fringe of society would knowingly choose a quick gp (and certain death) over gainful employment. On the other hand, of countless rabble who strap on a sword and are never heard from again, occasionally an adventurer or a small group will return laden with coin and recount tales of their exploits against Draconis the Red Dragon! Or their battle against the Goblins of Kertle! Or whatever. These adventurers are very few, but their tales hang on the tongues of local villagers such that their reputations become much larger and grander in the constant retelling (than they really are in drunken reality).
So how do you consider adventurers?
Posted by Kiltedyaksman at 10:30 PM