One weirdo limit

Because the Ask Us Anything forum went away I was inspired to ask something. :wink:

I remember reading Inspectres and Jared made this amazing observation which is that the vision for the game worked best with no more than one weirdo character and then made the rules support that.

When looking at the Torchbearer 3rd party materials, especially the ones made by Jared they seem to be mostly “weirdo” type of characters.

I know they are different games but does the game work better if there is a weirdo limit or is it all down to player buy in?

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(FWIW I think this belongs in the Torchbearer forum)

We’ve done a lot of games with one weirdo, and a lot of games that are more or less all weirdos. I think it’s fun to have people play the character they want.

Compared to other games, class has very little effect on the way the game flows. Classes with spells and prayers are sort of their own thing, but all of Jared’s spell classes are balanced against the core casters, so I’ve never seen it become an issue.

One rule we have (and it’s sort of informal) is that you must have experienced at least one character death before the Memento Mori classes are available. (Paladin and Thief are fine).

An additional word of caution goes to the Witch and any class that alters the Grind (Servitor and Death Knight). Only highly experienced players should be trusted with those classes, for their own sake as much as the group’s. If you fail to learn the rules before filling out the sheet, I will cancel your character. :slight_smile:

High and low might characters are not nearly the problem you’d imagine.


(Agreed, and moved!)

They’re definitely different games. I’ll defer to @Jared here but Inspectres is about that contrast to good degree - normies dealing with supernatural nonsense. Too many weird characters and it changes the feel. In Torchbearer, all adventurers are weirdos to some extent.


I view the weirdo characters as ways to introduce material to your setting. Each one has a reason for being a Torchbearer character (ie: wandering murder hobo) and including one is a big flag that says, “Hey! This is a thing now in our game!”

Besides the one weirdo per group rule, which ain’t bad, you could have a rule where you can only play a character you’ve encountered in the game as an NPC. That way, the player doesn’t need permission to spring their Minotaur Pit Fighter on you—if that type of character appeared in your game, it’s established canon.


In general, I prefer the one, all or none scheme. It’s baked into Burning Wheel, too (in selecting heroic abilities or magical characters).


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