08 July 2014

Earthdawn 4E: Example Character 26 - Dwarf Illusionist

This is the twenty-sixth Example Character in an ongoing series about Earthdawn. Introduction and Index.

There isn't particularly an iconic race for the Illusionist discipline. Though dwarfs have a natural aptitude for spellcasting, the are unlikely to be the first pick for this social magician. This particular Illusionist is designed to be more interested in pure magic, rather than a performer. Finding hidden truths and exploring the curiosities of true illusions are their motivations.

Each Circle saw this character improve one attribute (as noted after each Attribute Step) and take a new Talent Option. There are no Thread Items on this character, however unlikely it may be. 

Note: The entries in this series may be updated periodically as I master the coding to fit all eight of the Circles in a fashion which doesn't result in eye melting. Consider these living entries. Please leave comments if there is anyway this could be made more useful.

Discipline: Illusionist
Race: Dwarf

DEX: 13 (6) [+1]   STR: 8 (4) [+0]   TOU: 16 (7) [+1]
PER: 19 (8) [+2]   WIL: 19 (8) [+2]   CHA: 13 (6) [+1]

Initiative: 7
Physical Defense: 8
Mystic Defense: 14
Social Defense: 8

Physical Armor: 10 (Recommended: Fernweave, Forged +8 [10])
Mystic Armor: 6 (Recommended: Fernweave, Forged +0 [3])

Damage: 12 (Recommended: Ephemeral Bolt); 21 (with Willforce); 9 (Recommended: True Ephemeral Bolt); 18 (with Willforce)

Unconsciousness: 56
Death: 71
Wound Threshold: 10

Recovery Tests: 3
Knockdown: 4
Karma: 32
Karma: Interaction, +2 to Effect Step of a spell.

False Sight: 9 (17)
First Impression: 8 (14)
Illusionism: 9 (17)
Patterncraft: 8 (16)
Spellcasting: 9 (17)
Standard Matrix: 5
True Sight: 8
Astral Sight: 8 (16)
Conversation: 8 (14)
Awareness: 8 (16)
Disguise Self: 8 (16)
Taunt: 8 (14)
Power Mask: 9 (17)
Enhanced Matrix: 5
Willforce: 9 (17)
Frighten: 8 (16)
Hypnotize: 8 (14)
Dispel Magic: 8 (16)
Hold Thread: 8 (16)
Steel Thought: 8 (16)

Spell Matrices: 
Standard Matrix: Ephemeral Bolt/True Ephemeral Bolt
Standard Matrix: Monstrous Mantle
Enhanced Matrix: Displace Image
Enhanced Matrix: Phantom Warrior

To start with, almost every spellcaster is going to find a way to get more spell matrices long before this point. The spells listed make up the core competency of what this example character is about: straight forward (for an Illusionist) combat support.

Like all spellcasters, this adept is extremely versatile. Outside of a situation where the are limited to only their spell matrices, they have a variety of spells at their disposal. This is the area, more than any other magician, where the Illusionist can easily turn the game on its head. In the interest of expediency, all of those options will not be discussed. 

The emphasis here is on magical talents, over bolstering social abilities or being sneaky. As well, they are on the combat ready side of things, though this is not an Illusionist's strong suit. Their primary offensive suit is the classic Ephemeral Bolt/True Ephemeral Bolt pairing, which can be quite effective together. Displace Image gives them some much needed defensive capabilities while, Monstrous Mantle and Phantom Warrior serve to aid their allies offensively.

Despite this preparation, the Illusionist isn't really a combat ready discipline. Their defense is simply sub-par and while their offense can be effective, it can also be shut down by a prepared opponent. They are at their best when they can control the flow of a conflict, or even better: avoid it entirely. The difficulty is in offering a generic spell list when they benefit more than normal from a tailored spell selection.