Creating a We Mortal Legends Starting Kit pt. 1: Bastards and Warlords

There are 2 main legends (a different take on classes) in We Mortal Legends: Bastards and Warlords.

Image result for swords and deviltry [book]
Fafhrd & the Grey Mouser are good to ape here.

Bastards are characters who have an X factor: thief skills, maybe, or flashbacks to set things up with, or a danger sense for when the going gets tough.

Warlords are characters who can force their way through things, lead men to the brink of death and back again, or characters that are just too damn tough to knock over.

I thought for a long time about a third "core" magic legend, one that can fit in any genre of game like these two. But in a game with 8 magic systems and that is meant to run Cyberpuk too and where you only pick a couple for a campaign, it didn't make sense to me. Certainly for each magic system you can make a legend, and I'll make one as an example in the future (when I revisit the Saint project). You can also make all kinds of weird legends for different reasons (the Runner for when I get my Cyberpunk post finished or the Medusa as an example race-as-legend).

But these things aren't ubiquitous enough for me. Having just a "Magic-User" didn't cut it for me either. I actually am not the biggest fan of magic-user/wizard classes or clerics/druids. These classes have X-per-day features when the other two cores have always on abilities. I've never had fun playing a level 1 Magic-User whose used their 1 spell for the day; I can't do cool thief/specialist stuff after, and I can't really fight anything, so I feel like a random NPC. For some tables, that's good, and I don't look down on that. And while I don't want to go to the opposite extreme of Superhero stuff (ala 5E), there has to be a sweet spot in the middle for me.

So, these two legends are my sweetspot. These are the default "If you make a legend for this system, it should be something like this." My biggest litmus test for these 2 legends was: would I enjoy playing both of these for an extended period of time and if someone else was playing the same legend. From a read, my answer is yes. We'll see how that holds up through playtesting.

Note: The bastard has appeared in an earlier blogpost. I'm putting it back here just for the purpose of solidarity, and to do some minor updates to it. Ctrl+f "LEGEND: WARLORD" to skip down to that.

PLAYING WITH LEGENDS IN OTHER OSR GAMES

It's simple. If you want to play a Bastard or Warlord in another OSR game, follow these steps.
  1. Choose one of the abilities from options 51-70. This is the classe's starting ability.
  2. Bastards have HD/saves as a Thief; warlords as a fighter.
  3. Choose an ability 71-90. This ability is gained at level 5.
  4. Choose an ability 91-00. This ability is gained at level 9.
Simple.

If you play 5E and want to convert these, it won't be very balanced, but you can still do it. Just choose a feature between each bracket above 50 (so 5 features in total), and assign them to each of the 5 levels a sub-class gains a new feature. Bastards are Rogue Archetypes, and Warlord's Martial Archetypes.

LEGEND: BASTARD

You're not a good person. You might be compassionate, you might be kind, you might be gentle, but deep down, you will lie, cheat, and steal whenever you have to if it means getting what you want. Some bastards are thieves, and they do well. Other bastards are assassins, or wilderness guides, or snake oil salesmen all. But wise men the world round understand that bastards can be as useful as they are dangerous.

Image result for Harrison Ford art
If Harrison Ford has played it, that character has been a Bastard.

Roll 1d6 on the following tables.

What's Your Game?
Each roll on this table will give you a Legend Feature from your Character Advancement Table (CAT). Reference the table with the appropriate # received. If no options fit, make up your own and choose a Legend Feature from CAT numbers 51-70
  1. Thievery can make a man rich if he knows how to flip his wares fast enough. Start with 57-58.
  2. Lead someone through the dark parts of a city, or some dank forest, and let fortune line my pockets. Start with 55-56.
  3. This here vial, see how purple it is? A sign of God, surely. Drink it, it'll take all your ills away. Start with 61-63.
  4. Fickle, life. Easy to take. Never cheap, though. Never cheap at all. Start with 68-70. 
  5. No games, just good fuckin' times! I go in, see what I can shake up, and dip out. Start with 64-67.
  6. Daredevils like me live for the thrill. I don't care what gets in the way 'long as the adrenaline pumps. Start with 59-60.
Who Wants Revenge?
The NPC rolled on this table is hot on your trail and wants nothing more than to even the score.
  1. I loved them, and I loved a few others too, and now those few others all want a knife in my back.
  2. A whole town in an uproar, all over me? Best believe I'll never go back there.
  3. No, I didn't know they were the child of that crimelord. But I know now, and don't plan on ever seeing them again.
  4. It was a memento, but their lover was dead and I had a debt I needed to pay off. What's the harm of helping the living?
  5. Yeah, I killed them. Was a mistake--wrong target and all that.
  6. It was a lot of money, but there were two of us, and two shares is always better than one. They knew it was all business in the end.
Name Your Contact
Name the NPC you roll on the following table. This NPC is a contact you know will always help you with something specific.
  1. They trade in exotic insects from some strange place. Runs a whole den dedicated to getting bit and tripping out. Says you can see the future, for the right price.
  2. Not quite sure if they're human or not. Blue-green skin, black eyes all around. But they know ways I don't, ways into places and ways out too.
  3. Farmer turned warlord turned fucking city watch. Not the most illustrious career, but when muscle is needed, good hell do they raise it.
  4. Not sure if I'd call them a priest, a cultist, or a monk. Something different, I'm sure. But ask them three questions and give a special tithe, and they'll ask a god those questions and give you back three answers.
  5. I've betrayed this one catspaw more times then I can count. Each time, they help me still. Got a dirty favor and I'll pass it on.
  6. Top to bottom the whole organization is screwed. They owe me two more favors, so long as they involve a prized painting or a ring made out of saint bone.

Starting Equipment
You start with 10d10x5 currency, all of it a loan from someone who wants it paid back sooner rather than later. Additionally, you start with the following:
  • (a) a false identity and supporting documents or (b) 3 vials of poison, one of which robs sight, another speech, and another their memories of a loved one
  • (a) a pair of gloves that make it so your touch can't be felt or (b) a pair of boots that make no sound
  • a dagger (which you have at all times, even if you have been stripped of all weapons), and 2 tools of your choice from any type
  • traveling gear containing the basics for your world, though missing (a) a pillow (b) something to sleep in or (c) an additional set of clothing

THE BASTARD CAT
Below is your Character Advancement Table (CAT) for the Bastard Legend. Spend 1 XP to roll on it randomly, or XP equal to the 10's digit/2 (rounded up) for a specific roll. If the option has more numerous slots on the table, choose the 10s digit of the highest number.


1-20: HD increases by 1. Roll again and add 20 to the roll unless you choose this option from #50.
21-30: Add +1 to all saving throws.
31-40: 1+your level of hirelings are attracted to you by reputation alone.
41-49: When you roll for a keyword, roll an additional 1d20.
50: Choose any of the options between 1-49, then roll again, adding +50 to your roll if it's 50 or below.
51-52: Secret Smeller - You got a nose for secretive and hidden things. When you enter a room, you spot a hidden door, secret chest or safe, or a trap of the Referee's choice. On reroll, you can spot 1 additional thing.
53-54: Contacts on Every Continent - You gain an additional contact of your choice every time you roll this option.
55-56: Dangerphobia - When something hostile or dangerous happens, you can escape it's attention so long as you have a reasonable way to do so and until it starts looking for you specifically. On reroll, you can choose another person to also benefit from this feature.
57-58: Second-Story Work - When you see something you want to steal in a building, ruin, or otherwise guarded area, roll 1d10. If you spend that many days studying the thing's security, you learn both all the details about it and a single potential way to get around them. On reroll, subtract -1 from your 1d10 roll.
59-60: Danger Sense - Whenever you enter into a room, street, or otherwise new area, you know one of the following details: if something is watching you specifically, if something is following you, or if something is dangerous is waiting for you. On reroll, choose an additional option.
61-63: Counterfeit Tongue - When talking to a specific person or an audience, as long as no one in that audience contradicts you, you can convince them that any one thing you have has one of the following properties: is worth a king's crown, was sanctified by a major religious figure, can cure any ill, or can bring good fortune to the buyer. This works 1d6 times on an audience and anyone in it, afterwards they no longer believe you. On reroll, this works +1 additional times.
64-67: An Eye for Debauchery - When you meet someone new and talk to them for at least 10 minutes, you learn one of the following details about this: which of the seven deadly sins they most frequently commit, one vice they are addicted too, or one dangerous act they are willing to indulge in. On reroll, you learn an additional detail.
68-70: Throat-Slitter - When someone or something is completely unaware of you and you know how to kill it, roll a Savvy Check. On a success, you kill that thing. On reroll, roll again on your Bastard CAT.
71-72: Bad Luck Bares Baby - Whenever someone rolls a 13 or a total of 13 on any check, you cause that person to fail their check. On reroll, you can choose one of the following numbers instead: 0, 3, 7, 20, 66, or 100.
72-76: Weird Stealer - You've stolen a single estoery of your choice. On reroll, steal another esotery.
76-80: Archthief - You gain one of the following benefits: you can scale walls or cliffs without rope or handhelds, you can hide inside of shadows as if they were utter darkness, you can open any lock, you can pick any pocket, or you can leave no trace of your passing. On reroll, choose an additional option.
81-82: The Bastard with a Thousand Faces - Create a new identity, complete with 2 keywords. When you adopt this identity, replace up to 2 of your keywords with these additional keywords. It requires at least an hour of makeup and focus to change identities. On reroll, gain another identity with another 2 keywords attached to it.
83-84: Lucky Flashback - Roll 1d4 at the start of a game session. During that session, you can have a flashback that number of times, explaining why you are prepared for whatever situation you are in. The flashback has to include screwing someone over. On reroll, increase the die step by 1.
85-86: Trap God - You can construct any trap of your choosing as long as you have 30 minutes and the materials on hand. Additionally, any trap you come across, you know how to disable it if given at least a single minute of uninterrupted work. On reroll, reduce the number of minutes needed to make a trap by 5.
87-90: 9 Lives Jack - You've got 9 lives, and you've used 1d4 of them. When you would normally die, you can instead fake your death and reenter any following scene in any manner that you choose. On reroll, roll again on the Bastard CAT.
91: The Trick to Every Trick - Roll 1d4 at the start of your game session. You succeed on that many Savvy checks that you would otherwise fail during that session. On reroll, increase the die size by 1 step.
92: One Heist Under my Belt - You have already stolen a veritable fortune. Whoever wants revenge on you knows this, but no one else does. Roll a Savvy check whenever you spend from this endless well of money. On a failure, whoever wants revenge against you has gained 1d6 allies that know about your fortune. On reroll, roll again on the Bastard Cat.
93: Deal With a Devil - You've made a deal with something, not someone, very, very bad. Work out the details of the deal with the Referee. The deal must involve somehow involving the entire party. The thing will always uphold their end of the deal. On reroll, work out another deal with the GM. 
94: They Shot First - When you attack, kill, or otherwise hurt someone or something, you can shift all the blame onto them if less than 1d10 witnesses saw you. If you reroll this, decrease the die size by 1 step.
95: Copycat - Choose another Class Ability from a different classes CAT that is 70 or lower every time you roll this ability.
96: A Twist of Fate - Whenever you die, you can twist the skeins of fate. As a result of your death, all other PCs at the table will critically succeed on their next roll. On reroll, they gain an additional critical success.
97: Death Stealer - When you see a someone or something do damage, you can steal that method of doing damage for yourself. You can use this method, dealing the same number of damage dealt, 1d4 times. On reroll, increase the die step by 1.
98: A Set of Royal Pardons - You have a set of pardons from a regional ruler that is well-respected. You can use these to commit 1d4+1 crimes without receiving punishment. On reroll, you get another 1d4 pardons.
99: Prayer From Their Lips - You've stolen a prayer from someone. When you recite this prayer, roll a d100. If you roll under your total number of HD + Keywords + Spent XP, that prayer comes true. On reroll, you get another prayer.
00: The Bastard's Bastards - You've established a syndicate, mafia, black network, or cabal of followers. You have 1d10+7 followers and a secret headquarters at a place of your choosing. For each follower, roll on the Bastard CAT twice and assign a single keyword. They will remain loyal to you until someone makes them a better offer. On reroll, you gain an additional 1d6 followers.

LEGEND: WARLORD

Violence is your closest of kin and you know that'll never change. Since you were born you've found that your physical strength and your sixth sense for handling others has been your most bless'd weapon. This has given you a unique charisma, one that anyone can fall for so long as it promises hot-blooded action and the chance to leave something broken. Thus, you are a warlord. People will follow you into hell and back. Your hands, blood-stained, mold the world into a vision only your sharpened eye can see.

Related image
Ned Stark, Odysseus, Joan d'Arc, and even Conan are all Warlords to me.

What's Your Strategy?
Each roll on this table will give you a Legend Feature from your Character Advancement Table (CAT). Reference the table with the appropriate # received. If no options fit, make up your own and choose a Legend Feature from CAT numbers 51-70.
  1. Divide and conquer. It sows confusion, discord, and makes my soldiers realize that even the greatest walls are but brick. Start with 51-52.
  2. Brute force. An avalanche cannot be stopped, nor can I. Start with 57-58.
  3. The riskiest play always pays off. I put everything on the line and let the Fortunes guide me from there. Start with 59-60.
  4. Slow and steady slits the throat. I am cautious, gamble nothing, and exploit every mistake I see. Start with 53-54.
  5. Fast and loose, like the wind. We will raid them and run and do it again and again until our belllies are full. Start with 55-56.
  6. War by proxy is the easiest war of all. I use hired help, indirect tactics, and manipulation to pave the way forward. Start with 61-63.
Who Have You Bested?
The NPC on this table has been defeated by you and what you've taken from them has given you a hell of a reputation. It doesn't have to be a single NPC; it can be a warband, a corporation, a pantheon, or something else that you've battled with.
  1. We grew up as family, fought together as family, and won together as family. But in the end, only one could go further, and that one was me.
  2. They took from me everything. I took it all back, and then made sure they'd never have anything sacred again.
  3. It was business. Route them here, break them there. I did what I had to do. I won't say I'm proud of what I've done, but I'm proud at how well I did it.
  4. They were legends and I was not. Hard fought, bloody--but in the end, I was standing and those gods were not.
  5. Peasants, the poor, the sick. Culling them cleansed the streets but left the soul sicker than they ever were.
  6. They hated us and we hated them. Both sides were just. Both sides had fair claims to revenge. And I made sure only one side was left when everything was said and done.
What Are You Now?
The table below tells you what kind of force you're gathering right now. 
  1. Mercenaries. Fighting for a cause is best left to politicians and idealists. I just need to find a way to survive.
  2. Crusaders. There's something beautiful that we want to defend, spread, and empower. Obstacles in the way will be broken.
  3. Raiders. We have to survive, no matter what it costs us. They may need what they have, but we need it more--always.
  4. Heroes. Some say I'm drunk on fables and myth. I say that I'm special, and that those that fight with me will be special too.
  5. Purpose. There's something I need, and I know I'll need others to help me get it.
  6. Militia. We have to protect what we have at any cost, at all times.
Starting Equipment
You start with 6d12x10 currency, gained as a result of a recent battle that you've engaged in. If the number is odd, you lost the battle; if even, you won.
  • (a) the names of 10 violent souls who, if found, will die for you in battle or (b) a small band of 1d4 violent souls that serve you now and are as loyal as your payments are large.
  • (a) a scar that, when revealed to another creature, makes them hesitant to fight you or (b) a medal for your violent efforts that earns the respect of any authority that sees it.
  • any armor of your choice from your current Aesthetic's list and two weapons of your choice from your current Aesthetic's list, one of which has recently been used.
  • traveling gear containing the basics for your Aesthetic, though missing (a) rations (b) something to carry your gear in or (c) a set of undamaged clothing.
THE WARLORD CAT
Below is your Character Advancement Table (CAT) for the Warlord Legend. Spend 1 XP to roll on it randomly, or XP equal to the 10's digit/2 (rounded up) for a specific roll. If the option has more numerous slots on the table, choose the 10s digit of the highest number.

1-20: HD increases by 1. Roll again and add 20 to the roll unless you choose this option from #50.
21-30: Add +1 to all saving throws.
31-40: 1+your level of hirelings are attracted to you by reputation alone.
41-49: When you roll for a keyword, roll an additional 1d20.
50: Choose any of the options between 1-49, then roll again, adding +50 to your roll if it's 50 or below.
51-52: Divide & Conquer - When you and your allies have a creature separated from anything that can help it, or have it otherwise surrounded, you can act twice before it can act once. On reroll, choose an ally: they can act twice as well.
53-54: War Caution - When it is your turn to act, you can choose to instead learn one of the following pieces of information: any places around you that could be used for ambushes or hiding traps, a detail about a threat you're currently facing, if you can possibly kill a potential threat you can see, or a defense that a building, wall, or room has built into it. On reroll, you learn an additional piece of information.
55-56: Death by Wind - After succeeding on an Athletics check, you or any allies can immediately move 15 feet away from their current location. On reroll, you or your allies can move an additional +10 feet.
57-58: Overwhelming, like the Juggernaut - You can perform feats of almost supernatural strength, such as choking bears to death or knocking over large stone pillars. If you are under duress of any sort (combat, trap being triggered, pressure to perform), an Athletics check is required for these feats. On reroll, treat this as a +1 to your Athletics attribute.
59-60: The Dead Fool's Gambit - When you would take damage or fail a saving throw, you can choose to either deal 2d6 damage or to subdue your attacker if it is a creature. On reroll, you can choose to take -1 damage as a result of this, increasing by +1 on every reroll.
61-63: Great War Shout - Your orders, commands, and shouts motivate soldiers far beyond their abilities. On your turn to act, you issue some form of command to 3 of your comrades. These comrades gain 1d6 temporary AC. This temporary AC cannot stack or be refreshed and lasts only until you act again. On reroll, increase the number of allies inspired this way by +1.
64-67: The Rescuer - When someone you consider an ally and that you can see fails a saving throw, takes damage, or is otherwise targeted by an effect, you can move to their location instantly and make an Athletics check. If you succeed, neither you nor your ally suffer any consequences. If you fail, only you suffer the consequences. You can do this 1 time before your next turn. On reroll, you can do this an additional +1 times.
68-70: War-Trainer - Any allies of yours, up to 4 at game start, have been trained by you and increase their Athletics attributes by +1. You can train additional allies over the span 1d4 days to increase their scores by +1. On reroll, you can train men you've already trained an additional time, providing an additional +1 to their Athletics.
71-72: Trophy-Taker - Pick a number under your Athletics attribute. When you roll that number on an attack roll, you can sever a non-vital appendage of your choice from your target. On reroll, choose another number to trigger this off of.
72-76: Weird Warrior - You've learned how to fight with a new esotery of your choice. On reroll, gain another one.
76-80: One-Man Army - After making an attack, you can immediately make a 2nd attack. On reroll, you can take yet another attack.
81-82: Commander of Commanders - You have learned to give orders even in the most stressful of situations through music, banners, or just a damn loud voice. On your turn, you can give up to 3 allies of yours an order to complete right then and there. These allies are then given a bonus turn that they take immediately after your orders are given. On reroll, +1d6 more allied creatures can be given orders.
83-84: All Apart of the Plan - If you spend at least 8 hours planning for encounters in-game, the next encounter that you participate in ends the moment you take your turn, so long as violence is a possible solution. Describe what your planned strategy was and how you executed it. Then, roll 1d4; you and your allies suffer that many points of damage. On reroll, you can end +1 additional encounters this way.
85-86: Viscera Spread - You create grizzly trophies from the viscera of your enemies. These remains rot beyond recognition within 1d6 days unless properly embalmed with tools. You can brandish these remains at any time. Any non-ally that sees them is either shocked, appalled, amazed, or terrified, and will go silent for  make no checks unless defending themselves for 1d4 minutes. Targets can only see the same viscera once; new viscera is required to achieve this effect on them again. On reroll, increase the die size by +1 steps. 
87-90: Take Them All With Me! - When something kills you, you kill or break it in return as long as you could feasibly kill or break it. On reroll, you take +1 creatures or obstacles with you to the grave.
91: He Does Not Fall - When you would normally die, you can an additional turn before actually dying. On reroll, you can take +1 additional turns.
92: Wielder of Legend & Myth - With the GM's aid, create a legendary weapon with 1d4 special attributes to it. This weapon is sentient and can communicate through a single means of your choosing. Whenever a session begins, make a Weird check. On a failure, you are challenged by a warrior with 1d4 HD more than you, and an Athletics skill +1d6 above yours. If anyone aids you with this fight, your weapon instantly is taken by the warrior. If you die or lose, the warrior likewise gains the weapon. On reroll, roll again on your Warlord CAT.
93: Lives Are But Another Tool to be Used - When one of your orders results in the death of your ally, you can choose for their death to either do 4d6 damage to the target, or to subdue them. On reroll, roll again on your Warlord CAT.
94: Might Makes Right - Anyone who sees you physically best or kill another will not only keep the action a secret, they will become loyal to you. If multiple witnesses see you, roll 1d4 and gain that many hirelings. On reroll, increase the die step by +1.
95: Experience of A Thousand Wars - Roll 1d6 and record it. Any encounter you face, the number you rolled is always a viable means of overcoming that encounter in regards to the encounter's Overcome Table. On reroll, you can choose a different number.
96: Dipped in Immortality - The GM chooses a wrist, heel, or ear of your PC in secret. You can take damage no where else except that location. Damage taken to that location is multipled by 1d10. On reroll, decrease the die by 1 step.
97: Hands Deadlier Than Any Weapon - Choose a weapon category of your choice. Your unarmed attacks now have that weapon category's special feature. On reroll, choose an additional weapon category.
98: Avenger - When an ally of yours dies, you can use their weapon to banish, destroy, or kill whatever ended their life. If used against the killer, this weapon deals 1d10 damage against targets with hit points. Upon touching an obstacle that has no hit points, the weapon instead breaks their will and sends them fleeing. The moment the ally is avenged, the weapon loses all magical properties.
99: Standing One Against One Thousand - If you and your allies enter into an encounter against an enemy force that more than doubles your numbers, you and all of your allies gain one of the following benefits: +4 HD rolled immediately and added to your hit points, +3 to your Athletics attribute, or +1 additional turns that you can all take immediately after taking your normal turn. After the encounter has ended, the additional benefit(s) wear off. On reroll, choose another benefit to gain.
00: Vorpal - When you roll damage against something you know you can kill and the damage is 10 or higher, you instead kill your target. On reroll, lower the damage required by -1.

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