What Happened to Catamite

I was recently starting a campaign, and the player wanted to take the Catamite trait, which they’d found on Charred. Checking my copy of BWGR, I noticed that Catamite has been replaced with Catalyst.

Is there a reason for this, or is it just a matter of changing social norms? I assume there’s no reason I can’t let them take the trait if they really want it?

Catamite is just a character trait, so you can take it freely as long as you have the trait point to spare.

And I wouldn’t say that Catamite has been replaced with Catalyst; In the ganymede lifepath, Catamite was supplanted by Flamboyant as the required trait, and Catalyst was added at the end, for Paris of Troy-type drama no doubt.

The reasons for the removal are probably numerous. Homosexuality in the medieval era, the historical accidents (and acts) that lead to homophobia in our world, the word catamite and its origin in myth, usage as an insult, reference to pederasty and Classical Roman and Greek views of sexuality, how it all compares to non-Western non-imperialistic civilization… it’s a lot to cover! More than you can fit into a trait description, I suspect.

I say go for it, but do your own reading. If you want to play around the trait Catamite, really look into sexuality and sexual language in the era of your play.


The reason I said it had been replaced is because it no longer appears to exist in the updated book.

I think Catalyst is a bit more fun as a concept, but the player was interested in the original trait. We ended up discussing it and they went with Catalyst over Catamite—it seemed more fun, and it’s clearly more useful mechanically.


I can’t find it in my old copy of the character burner
It’s a character trait, so it’s easy to add something like that back in. I would check with the rest of the group that you’re all ok with how you’re interpreting it and including that in your game, especially if you’re going towards the original Greek meaning


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