Certain rangers, such as Wardens and Sea Rangers, may be charged with enforcing the laws of the local ruler. They arrest and punish poachers, patrol the lands they guard, and sometimes negotiate land use agreements with farmers, loggers, and others. If a royal decree protects a particular animal species, the ranger may be charged with enforcing it. Some rangers have the authority to act as judge and jury, allowing them to try cases on the spot and pass sentences as they see fit. Fines may be levied for minor infractions, such as trespassing, while more severe crimes, such as killing an animal from the king=s private stock or picking fruit from the king's tree, may be punishable by death. In such cases, the ranger will have a charter or royal writ from the ruler.
After considering the ranger's background, core traits, and routine duties, let's focus on his personality. The purpose of this section is to help players and DMs determine how ranger characters may behave in a campaign--for instance, how he responds to NPCs, interacts with other PCs, and reacts in combat situations. There are several courses to consider.
To begin with, you can consult the previous volumes in the
series. The first four books
of archetypes drawn from literature, film, and other fictional and mythological sources. In these books, players are encouraged to adopt the Folk Hero, the Vigilante, or other archetypes as models for their characters' personalities. Many of these archetypes can also be adapted to ranger characters; the archetypes in are especially applicable.
features a series of tables containing traits associated with intellect, interests, and other personality components. The key traits listed on these tables can be picked or determined randomly. The tables can be used for rangers as well as bards (or for that matter, any other character).
You can also refer to the kit descriptions in Chapter 4 of this book, many of which suggest traits associated with a particular ranger type. Players can use the descriptions as springboards for working out the details of their rangers' personalties.
Another way to shape a character's personality is to come up with a single word that
summarizes his identity. This word--which we'll call the
describes the essential nature of the character and how he comes across to others. While a
character's personality is comprised of many elements, the defining characteristic is the most dominant, the trait from which all other personality components arise.
If basing a personality on a single word seems restrictive or artificial, think about how
you describe people in your own life. A particular teacher may be a close friend , . Defining characteristics may may be , a favorite game designer may be
also spring to mind for fictional characters; consider the
Sir Galahad, the
Sherlock Holmes, the
Ebenezer Scrooge. The defining characteristic forms an
overall impression. The details come afterwards.
There's no best method for choosing a defining characteristic. Whatever word seems appropriate to you is good enough, so long as it brings the character into focus and feels right. To get you started, a sample list of defining characteristics appropriate for rangers is given below. The descriptions are intentionally vague, since personal interpretations