Adventures in Random Roleplay – Part 7 – The Once-Drowned Sea Dog

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Greetings, Randomites! Pencils sharpened?  Dice polished?  Then let’s begin.  Today we’re covering the fourth of our adventurers, one Orrin Salt. So, what do we know about this fair-minded layabout? How about that vengeful streak hiding beneath his calm exterior?

Human Ability Bonus

Now, Orrin, we’ve determined, is a Human Fighter who has a great deal of history at sea.  As far as Orrin’s nationality as a Human, we’re going to leave that open.  As his ethnicity has absolutely no bearing on his skillset, it seems prudent to leave that to whoever chooses to spend time with Orrin.  However, we have one minor decision that needs making.

Humans have two options in the Player’s Handbook.  They can either take a +1 to EVERY Ability Score as their own Racial Bonus, or they have the Variant option of taking a +1 to two Ability Scores, a single Skill Proficiency, and a Feat.  Let’s flip a coin.  Heads on Variant, you say?  Done.  And…  Variant.

This option doesn’t grant as many easy bonuses to Orrin, but lets us customize our Human to our personal taste a little easier.

Orrin’s Ability Scores

For now, following the PHB, let’s give Orrin his Ability Scores:

  • Orrin’s top two scores will be Dexterity and Constitution respectively, so they receive the 15 and 14.  We’ll modify those up to 16 and 15 with Orrin’s bonus for being Human as we’ll probably want Orrin to be particularly hardy from his life on the sea.  This makes sense as he was most likely scaling the rigging and trying to keep his feet in a storm, all while staving off seaborne sickness.
  • We’ll give him a Strength of 13 as he would still be pretty strong to survive as a Sailor.
  • We’ll give him a Wisdom of 12 and an Intelligence of 10, as he was most likely no slouch for learning navigation and watching squalls coming on the horizon.
  • However, regardless of his fair-mindedness, it appears that leaves his Charisma at 8.  Maybe that’s why he’s garnered a bit of a reputation as lazy?

Skills for a Salty Dog

  • As a Fighter, Orrin will have a 12 Hit Points to start (10 + his Constitution bonus).
  • As a Sailor, he has Proficiency in both Athletics and Perception to start with.  This is in addition to having Proficiency with Navigator’s Tools, and all waterborne vehicles.
  • As Fighter, we get to choose two more skills from a list of eight in the PHB.
  • Two of our options were already taken by our Background, so we’ll pick from what’s left.  As we know that Orrin survived a shipwreck, let’s take Survival.
  • We’ll also take Acrobatics, as it is becoming clear that Orrin is quite possibly a high flyer.

Orrin’s Fighting Gear

Now, Orrin has a ton of gear available to himself as a Fighter, as well as his steamer trunk of belongings carried over from his days at sea.  Let’s get started on the rest of his equipment:

  • We can choose either Chain Armor (a Heavy option that protects well but that has limitations on our skills) or Leather Armor, as well as a Longbow and 20 arrows.  As we already have a high Dexterity, we’ll go ahead and take the Leather, Longbow, and arrows. Having ranged options until you can close with the enemy is never a bad thing.
  • Next, we can choose between a shield and a martial weapon, or two martial weapons.  Orrin’s Dexterity seems to beg for a dual wielder, so let’s take those two weapons.  Let’s take a Rapier and a Whip.  While the Whip doesn’t have great damage, it will allow Orrin to attack from an extra five feet away.  Both also use Orrin’s Dexterity instead of Strength to attack.
  • Time to select between the light crossbow or two handaxes. We’ll take the handaxes; we already have a bow and at least the axes can be used for throwing attacks.
  • Finally, we have a choice of dungeoneer or explorer’s packs.  We’ll take the dungeoneer pack.  It has all the same goodies, as well as hammer and pitons for climbing.  We also know Orrin has a club that used to be a belaying pin from his sailing days, another 50 ft. of rope (silk this time,) a set of common clothes, 10 gp in a belt pouch, and his lucky charm, a mummified Goblin hand.

Orrin’s Abilities

Well, it looks like Orrin is certainly well-equipped to do… something.  To figure out a little better what, let’s hammer out Orrin’s Abilities:

  • As a Fighter, Orrin has Second Wind.  That means that once per short or long rest, Orrin can roll 1d10, add his level, and recover that many Hit Points.  Certainly useful for a rough and tumble Fighter.
  • We also get to choose Orrin’s first Fighting Style. Now, there are certainly several useful options in the PHB, but we’re going to reach beyond for this one, back into Unearthed Arcana again for their Waterborne Adventures pdf.  Why? Well, because we have a Fighter who was a Sailor.  The Mariner Fighting Style seems like a perfect fit.
  • As long as Orrin isn’t wearing Heavy Armor, his Climbing and Swimming rates are both his normal movement speed of 30, instead of half like they are for most folks.  He also gets a +1 to his AC because of his Mobility.
  • With this in mind, as we look back into the PHB for a Feat, one reaches out and beckons like a siren to a drunken sailor. Well, maybe not. More like the singing of two blades on the air.  Orrin has a small armory on his person, so it only makes sense to take this feat.  As long as Orrin is wielding two weapons, he gains another +1 AC bonus (moving him up to 16 AC, equal to the Chain Armor we could’ve taken,) as well as being able to dual wield with weapons that aren’t light.  Additionally, every time he could draw or stow a single weapon, he can now do two.  This makes Orrin versatile, quick, and pretty dangerous. Just what we want in a Fighter.

Take a deep breath and maybe you can smell it…the spray of the sea.  Orrin moved like a spider in a web on the rigging of the ship he served with.  And when his vessel went down, he was the only one strong and lucky enough to survive.  Orrin’s never forgotten the sea or the lessons it taught him. How to move, how to climb, how to swim, how to spill blood, all without the luxury of unmoving ground. For now, Orrin has been content to wait, maybe selling his talents to the highest bidder, all while watching and gleaning what information he can on those who sank his ship and killed his crew.

I hoped you all enjoyed meeting Orrin.  Next week, we’ll be taking a peek into the Life and Equipment of Nasha Redmist, Half-Orc Paladin Soldier. Until then, be safe. And remember…


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Written by: Jason A. Clark

Writer, Salesman, Cartographer of The Weird Realms In My Head

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