Talk:Adventurer (5e Background)

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This background doesn't follow the set precedents in 5th edition:

1) You don't pick and choose skills within a background. A background simply gives you two.

2) Armor and weapon proficiencies aren't "tool proficiencies." They're simply armor and weapon proficiencies, respectively. Tools are always related to ability checks, and are things like disguise kits, thieves' tools, etc.. Additionally, no background grants you armor or weapon proficiencies, and any that did, especially one that gives you your choice regardless of what tiers (such as light, medium, or heavy,) would be incredibly powerful. Who wouldn't use this to sneak their way into being a low level wizard in full plate?

3) No "good" ideal? Or even an "any" ideal? I guess I never stared too closely at the ideals in the PHB, but I don't recall any background forgetting those two.

For reference, the DMG says "Choose two skill proficiencies and two tool proficiencies for the background. You can replace tool proficiencies with languages on a one-for-one basis." Marasmusine (talk) 01:38, 19 January 2015 (MST)
Thank you for the quick response! Also, original poster here, got myself a username. Back to the topic at hand, doesn't that mean when creating the background that you the creator choose two skill proficiencies for the player to gain, rather than the player choosing between two? The details on tool proficiency and language trade-outs is handy info, though. Didn't recognize that pattern. Also, does it mention how to handle alignments? I got a DMG, but I didn't look closely at it before letting a friend (who's more interested in DMing) borrow it.--GoodDalek (talk) 01:57, 19 January 2015 (MST)
Kydo made the background before we had access to the DMG, so we'll see if he wants to update it :) There's no codification for alignments in backgrounds, so there's nothing to say a background has to have a Good ideal. The random ideals are just suggestions, the player can ultimately make their own if nothing fits. Marasmusine (talk) 02:27, 19 January 2015 (MST)
Fair enough. :3 Well, if you hear from him, I'd like to see an update. This background would be useful for characters who simply have nothing in their past but an excess of adventurely spirit. Also, while all evidence seems to be conclusive that you're right that it doesn't have to have a good ideal, this one seems like it should, I think? After all, I'd wager that plenty of adventurers are do-gooder types. Consider it simply a suggestion. After all, players can just draft up their own or poach one from another background.--GoodDalek (talk) 02:39, 19 January 2015 (MST)
Actually, I had the DMG when I made this. :) The idea behind each of the backgrounds I have designed is to play with the mechanical dynamic within the restrictions already set. My philosophy is: "If they don't say no, the answer is yes."
Based on that, a background must give two skill proficiencies. It never said by what means. I thought it would be cool for the adventurer background to have an impact on the PCs that is as variable as the people it describes. It gives you one physical skill and one mental skill. Even a wizard, then, must have developed some athleticism or acrobatics to survive, and even a brick-headed fighter must have learned through painful experience to be wary and wise of his surroundings.
The same appears with tools. I'm sure they meant tool proficiencies in a strict, narrow sense, being restricted to only the tools list. Indeed, there is no evidence to contradict this interpretation. The problem is that nothing in there is particularly adventurely. In fact, I've gone so far as to call the tool list as a source of free sellable loot. So I bent the rules and chose to use the word "tool" in a literal sense, as any implement used is a tool- even our hands. So weapons and armor are tools. I did mean it to be very specific, limited to only one exact weapon or armor. (IE: "Short Sword" as opposed to "swords" or "simple weapons"; "Ring Mail" as opposed to "Medium Armor") And I'd like to see a wizard in plate. Dwarves can already do it anyways! The problem is full plate is insanely expensive and not available from any of the base templates. I've been soloing the AL expeditions. I'm level 4 and I still don't have enough for full plate yet.
Likewise, they must have encountered all kinds of incredible beings, and may very well have attempted to converse with them! But learning to speak is not the same as being literate. So, I gave the option of two half-languages (illiterate speech) or one full language (with speech).
Although there is no demand to have any alignment associated to any ideal, I chose to do it anyways because I liked the way it looked. And there is a good ideal. In fact, it's the first one in the list! :D
So, I am going to go ahead and clarify the "tool" proficiencies. If you guys find it too big of a bend, fine. I just felt if made sense for adventurers to be improvising and "bending the rules" of their class.--Kydo (talk) 13:05, 19 January 2015 (MST)
I am interested to know, though, why you didn't ask about the most glaring stylistic deviation here. Marasmusine has brought it up repeatedly- a background is supposed to be something you used to do, and one of the most important parts of writing your character's backstory is explaining what changed. (Actually I'm surprised he hasn't brought it up himself! Mind giving your two cents Marasmusine?) This background assumes no change whatsoever, and in fact depends on it! A blatant contradiction of the design guidelines. Basically, this is me voicing my disagreement with that guideline. I find it arbitrary and silly. If the idea is fun, interesting, and mechanically stable, why not?--Kydo (talk) 00:39, 20 January 2015 (MST)
It's a good idea for a background - a child thrust into exploring ruins, righting wrongs, earning coins for fetch quests/killing rats in a basement - like Link! So I think it's an exception to that rule (and maybe the only background that can do so). Thinking of Link, maybe the armor proficiency could be changed to proficiency with shields. I find that more believable for very young adventurer - compared to somehow finding an expensive suit of plate armor that fits him; similarly perhaps limit the weapon proficiency to Simple. (Although I'd rather the background not have weapon/armor proficiencies) Marasmusine (talk) 01:34, 20 January 2015 (MST)
Yeah. I kinda figured it wouldn't fly in the long run. I don't find any of the premade tools appropriate though. Maybe I'll make some new ones just for the Adventurer? Do you guys have any ideas? I like ideas with more than one hand in their creation. (For now, I like the idea of switching "armor" to "shield". More tool-like at least.)--Kydo (talk) 09:15, 20 January 2015 (MST)
Link is pretty good with a variety of musical instruments. Thieves' tools is appropriate, I think a young adventurer would soon become experienced with locked doors and traps. I can't think of anything new right now. Marasmusine (talk) 01:31, 22 January 2015 (MST)
Good point. I can't think of a single dungeon crawl game where getting past locks wasn't a top priority.--Kydo (talk) 01:55, 22 January 2015 (MST)

Can I just ask, what was a character with that background doing when they were five years old? Seriously, even if their parents were adventurers, you do not take a five year old child into a dragon's liar. I think the reason for the backgrounds is that they tell you what a character did before being an adventurer not because you turn twenty, you start a career and then decide that you don't like it and want to be an adventurer but rather because it is what they learnt during his life before turning twenty. Quick example would be: My background is guild artisan because when I was eleven a bowyer took me as his apprentice, but then, when I came to a reasonable age to do dangerous things I decided to change. I am just saying that because I think that the background gives a cool layer to the character's story giving a few strokes about their early years.

So everyone with the soldier background was a child soldier? Even thd romans were a little queezy about that sort of ghing, and they loved war. Additionally, a character could start their career at any age- you don't have to be at the cusp of maturity.. Kydo (talk) 17:35, 7 May 2015 (MDT)
I don't really think the backgrounds system was intended to represent any specific period of time in a character's life. Using the same example, the souldier background could just as easily represent a 20 year old former child soldier, or a 72 year old retired veteran who only went to war due to a conscription when he was 36, working as a farmer. Kydo (talk) 17:57, 7 May 2015 (MDT)
In as much as I completely understand your point, I have to say that the soldier background sounds more like the background that a samurai, a man-at-arms, a lesser son of a noble or even a squire would have. And those people did have a formal training in warfare. They didn't start when they where twenty, but had been trained since they were young. I know that the background also says something about a militia, which I find not really suitable because militias didn't really have a warfare training.
And yeah, of course the background shouldn't be limited to the early stages of life, and of course it can represent what you've been doing for seventy years. And of course there could even be an adventurer school in your world that trains children to be adventurers. The only limit is your imagination. I just wanted to point out that I think it is important to think how this background is different from the "there is just a black in my life before I started adventuring" that we can find in a lot of characters in RPG.
Hm. You know? You're right. This needs more fluff and less hobby humor! Kydo (talk) 04:04, 8 May 2015 (MDT)

It's not that a piece of armour or weapon breaks any design rules: it's just that it's unneeded (your class gives you the weapons you need) and doesn't have a strong narrative. I'm going to try something a bit more flavourful. Marasmusine (talk) 10:32, 9 June 2017 (UTC)


Template:Succeededed Quality Article Nominee If there are no opposing opinions, I'll move this to QAs. Marasmusine (talk) 08:37, 10 June 2019 (MDT)

Comment. I'm just confused because aren't D&D characters adventurers inherently? This article isn't bad but I just don't understand its need to exist.   ~BigShotFancyMan   talk   12:55, 20 September 2019 (MDT)

  • Support I like the twist this brings to the game's role playing. Even though the name could be changed to say, Journeyman, it doesn't need to. Like other backgrounds, this broad name encompasses the critical gameplay involved with the background. --Green Dragon (talk) 07:14, 6 December 2019 (MST)
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