Monday, November 20, 2023

CtEA Pregens: Merchants and Theives

One of the wonderful things about Gurps is the way it supports non-combat play. Ein Arris is rather combat-centric, but even so, there is room for a non-combat character. These characters aren't focused on winning the big fights, but on avoiding them, and on maximizing the advantage the party can show up to the fight with. They are all still capable combatants: in a lot of games I've run they'd be considered front line soldiers. Other characters have face, desert, and stealth skills, but these characters specifically excel at them.

Cinch is a Burgler who's hit it big and is on the run. He's got a massive gem worth $50,000 at least: The Heart of Kirit. Only problem is, the Gem is too large and too famous to fence, at least in Lantara. He's hoping to beat the news of his theft across the desert, fence or ransom the Heart of Kirit, and then live off the resulting investments. Cinch is a top notch sneak with good face skills, and his raw stats let him be useful in the desert with just a few points. He's a not a great combatant, but he does add another sword or bow to the team.

GCS Sheet    PDF Sheet    Blog Sheet

Ditty is a charming conwoman from Kedhris, living off her sharp wits, quick tongue, and nimble fingers. Ditty loves to take the proud and overbearing down a peg, especially if it makes her money in the process. While she has no qualms about stealing from or embarrassing others, she does have a soft spot for the unfortunate. Ditty is skilled thief, a terrific talker, and at home in the desert. She's not a bad with the sword, but she's not great either, and if she must fight would prefer to find  some sort of edge.  

GCS Sheet    PDF Sheet    Blog Sheet 

Girth is a Kedhris merchant currently down on his luck: a trading venture of his went wrong, and now he actually owes money. His contacts in the guild see promise though, and he hopes he can get another trading venture off. For now, he'll take jobs where he can get them. Girth has been back and forth across the desert many times and speaks both Lantrian and Shandassan. He's a skilled trader and negotiator who can get people across the desert. He's learned both the sword and the bow for self-defense, though he doesn't exactly consider himself a warrior. 

GCS Sheet    PDF Sheet    Blog Sheet 

Weave is a happy-go-lucky agent, fixer, and merchant. He could theoretically be making a lot of money running his own trading outfit, but where would the fun in that be? He's making enough getting the merchants of Kedris to pay him to solve their problems, seeing the world and living the life while he's at it. He's always got a smile on his face, a tune on his lips, and a new friend at his side. Weave is a skilled negotiator who lives by his quick tongue. He's picked up a desert skills quickly, though he's more of a quick learner than a dedicated student. Weave is competent at both the sword and the bow.

GCS Sheet    PDF Sheet    Blog Sheet 

 These characters were a bit easier for me to flesh out and differentiate than the more combat-oriented ones. This could be because there were only four of them, rather than eleven, or it could be because I just get this sort of character better. I had lots of fun building them. 

Girth is a member of the Merchant's Guild, which gives lots and lots of small bonuses throughout the adventure. The Adventure suggests having at least one party member be a member of the Guild or of White Sword. Ultimately, I think this is an "Adventure Tax", akin to requiring one member of your party to spend a bunch of points on rank that they won't use because their "command" is a bunch of Player characters. The Adventure tries hard to make the Merchant's Guild worth it at least.

The group I've worried the most about being able to get through the adventure would be one where everyone is one of these characters. On the other hand, I'd expect such a group to try some wildly unexpected stuff: you've got a bunch of sneaks and manipulators, so the adventure could turn out very unpredictable! On the other hand, I'd expect most parties want one character to be from this group.

The pictures are from again. 

I hope you find these characters useful!


  1. Hey Eric, not sure if you're still doing reviews of newly-released GURPS materials but I just had my first full-length supplement published last month (GURPS Infinite Worlds: Worlds of Atomic Horror). I haven't had any proper reviews since it came out, and I'd be really interested to hear what you think if you'd be up to taking a look. Based on your review of IW:Nightreign early last year it seems like the kind of thing you may be interested in. I have bought a few extra copies of the work through W23 so I'd be happy to send a "review copy" if you like. Thanks much, Matt Wehmeier

    1. I'll look into it. Settings books particularly interest me. I've still got to finish this project though.