The following are the original character creation guidelines for Narth 2000. They were written in the late 1990s for GURPS Third Edition, Revised and have not (yet) been updated to GURPS Fourth Edition, mainly because the campaign is moribund and has been since the early 2000s. I'm posting them here in their outdated form mostly as a historical document. Although I have been considering updating this to be compatible with the latest edition of the game, I have no immediate plans to do so.

Table of Contents

  1. Points
  2. Races
  3. Tech Level
  4. Religion
  5. Magic
  6. Psionics
  7. Advantages
  8. New Advantages
  9. Disadvantages
  10. Skills
  11. Languages
  12. New Skills
  13. Character Types


Player characters are to be built on 120 points, with 40 points of disadvantages and 5 quirks.

Back to Table of Contents


There are a number of races besides humanity available as player characters. Elves, half-elves, dwarves, orcs and goblins are all possible at this point level; other races are present but in general will cost too much for use as PCs. See the web page on races for details on the races of elves and half-elves; all others are as detailed in Fantasy Folk.

Humans have various ethnic types beyond the classic "Celtic/Nordic" stereotype, but these have no impact in game terms. Feel free to choose any human racial type you wish.

Back to Table of Contents

Tech Level

The setting is a TL5 world with a mixture of science and magic. Races other than elves and dwarves are limited to low TL5 (flintlocks and contemporary technology), while the Sidhai (Elves) and the dwarves have late TL5 equipment (revolvers, Winchester-type rifles and other circa-1890 tech). Members of other races may not have familiarity with or access to Elven/Dwarven equipment and tech skills without a 10-point Unusual Background or other special dispensation from the GM.

For the purposes of determining penalties to TL skills and the relative levels of the High and Low Technology traits, treat humans as being effectively TL4.

Back to Table of Contents


The Jadiwan is overseen by a pantheon of fifty-some gods, all of whom are active and interventionist to one degree or another. For the most part, this is limited to powering clerics and granting the occasional miracle, but several gods are known to walk among mortals -- either to keep an eye on things, or just for the fun of it.

Individuals may worship one or more gods, or none at all. Of course, each god has his or her fanatics. On the far opposite end of the spectrum can be found another species of fanatic -- the antitheist, who believe that the gods have no right meddling in the affairs of mortals; some of these even deny that the gods had a hand in creating mortals! But in the middle are most people, who pay at least lip service to the god or gods whose sphere(s) of influence include their profession, and any other whose spheres might impact their lives more than occasionally, and many more who revere and worship their chosen god or gods.

Off the spectrum completely are those who actively worship the metagods (such as Asutine, the Void and the Watchers Above), or even such quasigodlike creatures as Alundrel. None of these beings seem to acknowledge worship, nor do their followers include clerics with any verifiable divine power.

Others -- especially those with close ties to nature -- may give reverence to one or more of the Elemental Lords. These are quasigodlike beings who seem to rule the four elemental planes. The names given to them in most of the tongues of the Jadiwan translate as "Aetherlord", "Rockthane", "Wavemistress" and "Flameking".

See the gods' web page for a listing of deities available for worship, reverence, or opposition.

Back to Table of Contents


In general, Narth is a high mana world, which means many spells can be cast by anybody who cares to learn them. Some areas of the Blasted Lands are Wild Magic zones (see GURPS Celtic Myth).

All colleges of magic found in the Basic Set, GURPS Magic and GURPS Grimoire are available, including the Tech College, which is limited to TL5. Exceptions: From the Tech college, the Radiation subcollege, all plastic spells, and Awaken Computer are not available.

Most mages are members of an Order. Despite the Orders, and their claims to the contrary, magic is not completely controlled. In particular, spells from the Plant College are commonly known by most farmers, who use them to enhance crop yields.

Clerical magic is available. The guidelines in GURPS Religion will be used for this. Please note that not all of the gods allow "wandering priests". Check the gods listing for details on each religion. (Some gods do have detailed breakdowns available; check the religion details page to see what is currently written up. If the god isn't listed on that page, email me through the link in the menu for a listing of the spells available.)

Back to Table of Contents


Psionic powers are not available to characters.

Back to Table of Contents


A note about GURPS Compendium I: The following advantages are not available: Chronolocation, Enhanced Block/Dodge/Parry, Extra Stun, Gadgeteer (50 point level), G-Experience, Hard To Kill, High Technology, Immunity to Timesickness, Improved G-Tolerance, Mechanical Telepathy, Rapier Wit, Ridiculous Luck (except as noted below!), Security Clearance, Tenure, 3-D Spatial Sense, Weapon Master, Body of Pure Thought, Faerie Empathy, Extra Life, Fugue, Illuminated, Insubstantiality, Racial Memory, Reawakened, Retrogression, Snatcher, Super Luck (except as noted below!), Temporal Inertia, Time-Jumper, World Jumper, all Psi-related advantages, all Martial Arts-related advantages, all Cyberware, all advantages requiring TL's above 5, all racial/super advantages (except as part of a racial package) and all special attacks.

Clerical Investment: 5 points/level of rank. The usual ranks available in the churches of Narth are:

Level Position
0 Worshipper
1 Acolyte
2 Priest, friar, nun
3 High priest
4 Bishop
5 Cardinal
6 Archpriest

Please note that these terms are merely translations into the closest English equivalent, and are not to be taken completely literally. A church or temple will usually have one high priest and several lesser priests assisting him or her. A "bishop" is a priest who is charged with overseeing several local temples. A "cardinal" is a priest of exceptional devotion serving in the Prime Sanctuary of a religion, and the Archpriest is the "pope" of a particular church. Many churches allow "wandering" clerics; these will almost never be above the rank of High Priest.

Please note that clerical investment does not automatically confer the use of clerical magic. See "Power Investiture" under New Advantages.

In many nations there is also a corresponding Status to go with the various ranks of Clerical Investment. Clerical Investment rank counts as Status for this purpose, but any difference between rank and Status must be purchased. For instance, a High Priest is a clerical rank of 3, but in many places has a Status of 5; the High Priest gains 3 free levels of Status from his rank, but must buy 2 more to match the Status he is accorded. This is mandatory.

Starting characters may not have a rank above High Priest.

Contacts: Use the Compendium prices.

Extra Fatigue: A maximum of 3 extra points is allowed.

Extra Hit Points: A maximum of 3 extra points is allowed.

Literacy: All characters are presumed to be literate.

Military Rank: Military rank includes free Status, as per the Basic Set.

Patron: Churches will be patrons to their clerics. The typical church is a base 35-point patron. Frequency of appearance will vary depending on the church. A critical success on an appearance roll may, at the GM's option, indicate a personal intervention by the cleric's god.

Status: Status may vary from nation to nation. The following chart will apply to most human nations. Not all nations will have all the status levels listed here (for instance, nations without slavery will not have status -2).

Level Position in Society
-2 Slave, Criminal
-1 Feudal Serf
0 Freeman, mercenary
1 Lesser merchant, mayor of a small town, local priest
2 Greater merchant, mayor of a large town, member of a small order of knighthood
3 Typical priest, mayor of a city
4 Member of a great order of knighthood, landed gentry, "merchant prince"
5 Lesser nobles, high priest
6 Greater nobles, senator, parliamentary representative
7 Prince/Princeling, Archpriests
8 King/Queen

The Sidhai and the Yadhai both use the following chart:

Level Position in Society
-1 Criminal
0 Average elf
1 Family head, merchant, "mother of many"
2 Professionals, knights, elders (those over 1800 years in age), bards
3 Priests, guildmasters, lesser noble clans
4 Member of a great order of knighthood, lesser clan leaders, greater noble clans, industrialists, leader of a city-state
5 Greater nobles, master bards
6 Royal relatives, courtier/representatives, Archpriests of foreign religions
7 Prince/Princess, Archpriest of state religion, royal advisors
8 King/Queen

(The state religion of the Sidhai is worship of Lindelona; the Yadhai worship Ntono.)

The Dwarven status system is as follows:

Level Position in Society
-2 Criminal
-1 Child, Apprentice to a craft
0 Average dwarf/typical journeyman
1 Family head, master craftsman, warrior
2 Guildmaster, typical priest of Jisef
3 Clan leader, craftsman adept
4 Settlement leader/mayor, sheriff
5 High priest of Jisef, warrior of reknown
6 Craftsman of extraordinary skill
7 Parliament member, Prince/Princess, Archpriest of Jisef, Craftsman of legendary skill
8 The Mountain King and Queen

These are by no means the only possible categories (entertainers, for example, may be anywhere from Status 0 to 5), nor are the listed positions "locked in" to their numeric level. Interesting character stories and adventures can grow around anomalous status levels.

Status in Narth includes the free Savoir-Faire skill for one's native culture, and the default for other cultures.

Reputation: Many Orders of mages may have reputations that benefit their individual members. See Orders of Magic.

Unaging: Several races have extraordinarily-long lifespans that would be prohibitively expensive to purchase using the Extended Lifespan advantage. These races have been quantified using Unaging, although they do grow old and die at their appointed times.

Unusual Background: Non-Sidhai/dwarf characters must pay a 10-point UB cost in order to have access to equipment and skills from above TL4, and must explain how they acquired them. Note that ammunition for Sidhas/dwarven firearms will not be easily available outside of the elven or dwarf homelands!

The Judo or Karate skills were created by non-human races in this setting, and any character who is not of the appropriate race who knows one of these skills must take a -5 point Unusual Background. If he knows both, he must take a UB for each one.

Back to Table of Contents

New Advantages

Special Note: "Holy" Advantages. GURPS Compendium I introduced a number of new advantages that are appropriate for a wide variety of "holy" or god-touched characters. Among these are Blessed and Power Investiture (both of which have been in use in this campaign world since its creation), Divine Favor, Harmony With The Tao, Illumination, True Faith and a variant form of Clerical Investment. Of these, Illumination is not available in the campaign, the variant Investment is meaningless as we use the Power Investiture system, and Harmony with the Tao has a prerequisite, as noted below. The others are all available as written.

Blessed 10/20 points

You have a special attunement to your deity. At the 10-point level, you gain the ability to use any one Divination spell at IQ level; the specific spell is determined by the choice of deity. You also gain a +1 reaction from followers of that deity who know you are Blessed. For 20 points, you are Very Blessed, which gives +5 to the Divination skill. You must act in accordance with the laws and commandments of the deity, or the advantage will be lost. Usually only clerics may take this advantage, but in special cases, other character types may have it.

In Compendium I, different gifts may be given to the Blessed; you may use those rules instead, if the volume is available to you.

Harmony With The Tao

This Compendium I advantage is allowed, but in this campaign has a prerequisite of at least one level of Blessed.

Order Rank 5 points/level (maximum 30 points)

A human mage who is a member of a magical Order may have a position of importance in that Order. Order Rank defines that position:

Rank Position
-1 Apprentice
0 Typical member
1 Master
2 Magister
3 Adept, Teacher
4 Factor (head of Chapter House)
5 Representative to the Sanctum
6 Archmage/Oligarch

While nominally the ranks are supposed to indicate one's progress in mastery of magic, the actual pecking order they represent is usually political and social. The rules of an Order will usually require that mages of lower ranks kowtow to those of higher rank; especially old or conservative orders may even enforce services and absolute obedience on those members below the third rank.

As with Military Rank, every three levels of Order Rank provides 1 free level of Status.

Power Investiture 10 points/level (maximum 30 points)

(From GURPS Religion.) This is the gift of magical power from your deity. Each level gives +1 to IQ when learning new divine spells. This advantage is different from Clerical Investment, which is a measure of your sociopolitical status in a church. Different levels indicate different degrees of divine favor -- the more you have, the greater a bond you have with your deity. Power Investiture is a gift from your god so that you can serve his will. Not all clerics have Power Investiture, and not all who have it are clerics... and if your faith or performance wavers, your god may reduce your level of Power Investiture, either temporarily or permanently.

You can have a maximum of 3 levels of Power Investiture. In general, selection of spells is limited by your levels in this advantage. The rule of thumb is to treat levels in Power Investiture as levels of Magery required for a spell; if a spell would require Magery 3, then it will not be granted to a character with Power Investiture 1 or 2. However, a cleric must have at least one level of Power Investiture in order to get any spells from his god at all, even those requiring no Magery.

A cleric may always learn spells the usual way, whether or not he has any Power Invested in himself, but woe to the unworthy who misrepresents mundane magical power as divine! Also, certain churches -- specifically Fermus' -- often recruit the mage-gifted as priest-candidates.

Back to Table of Contents


A note about GURPS Compendium I: The following disadvantages are not available: Evil Twin, Acceleration Weakness, Freesick, G-Intolerance, No Physical Body, Space Sickness, Timesickness, VR addiction, all Cyber disadvantages, and all racial/super disadvantages (except as part of a racial package). Of the Occult and Paranormal disadvantages, only the following are allowed: Cursed, Cursed (Divine Curse), Jinxed, Magic Susceptibility, Untrained Shapechanging, and Weirdness Magnet.

Age: Nonhumans age at different rates, and thus do not garner penalties for age on the same scale as humans. Elves get -3 points for every 28 years over age 1390. Half-elves receive the same points for every 6 years of age over 312.

Reduced Hit Points: A maximum of 3 is allowed.

Reputation: "Necromancer" is a Reputation worth -4.

Secret: Worshippers of certain gods (such as Ntono, Jadeg and Dav) must keep their faith secret in most lands. In general, this is a secret whose revelation could mean death. Members of certain magical orders have similar secrets.

Social Stigma: Nonhumans in most human lands must take the Minority Group stigma. So-called "rogue" mages (see the web page on Orders of Magic) have a Social Stigma of -1.

Youth: Nonhumans age at different rates from humans, and thus do not suffer penalties for youth on the same scale . Elves get -2 points for every 14 years under age 250. Half-elves receive the same points for every 5.5 years of age under 100. The maximum of -6 points in Youth applies to nonhumans as well as humans.

Back to Table of Contents


A note about GURPS Compendium I: The following skills are not available: Science!, Weird Science, skills requiring a tech level over 5, any psionic skills, and any that have Trained by a Master as a prerequisite. Martial arts maneuvers are optional.

Elves and dwarves are TL5 for the purpose of tech skills. All other races are TL4 and suffer the usual penalties when trying to use elven/dwarven equipment.

Alchemy/Chemistry: These skills are flip sides of each other, governed by an "observer effect". All materials have both a mundane and a mystic aspect, and their reactions and interactions are controlled by whether one looks for a mystic or mundane result. While there are specialists in each field, the most advanced researchers are proficient in both, because it is possible to use mystic reactions to develop compounds with new mundane properties, and vice versa.

Medical Skills: "Humanoid" (Dwarf, Elf, Gnome, Human and Orc) medical skills all default to each other at -2. Half-elf defaults to Elf or Human medical skill at -1. Merfolk defaults to Human at -1, any other humanoid at -3. Goblin defaults to any humanoid skill at -3. Centaur defaults to either humanoid medical skill or Veterinarian at -5.

Area Knowledge: An individual Realm or Plane may be taken under this skill, provided the character has spent time there.

Geology: Geology must often be paired with Theology (Friel), as the earth-god has a significant impact on geological matters. Elementalism (Earth) (q.v.) is often a good companion skill.

Heraldry: A new specialization is "Mage Order Marks". Orders of Magic provide their members with enchanted tattoos that identify the order to which they belong.

Karate/Judo: These skills are available in this setting, but are not commonly known by humans. The Judo skill represents the Sidhai unarmed combat style known as Afis o diesta na tresti ("Helping the foe defeat himself"). Karate represents the goblin-created style known as "The Bladeless Sword". Both may be learned without modification by all humanoid races, but characters not of the race which developed the style must pay a 5-point Unusual Background cost for each skill and explain where and how they learned it.

Occultism: General magical knowledge is included in this skill, but more of a theoretical and informational nature than practical.

Savoir-Faire: A new specialty is "Magical Order". Each Order has its own rules and etiquette, and a member is expected to know and follow them. Although these can differ dramatically from Order to Order, there are still some common elements across all the Orders; thus Savoir-Faire for any given Order defaults to any other Order-5.

Survival: An individual Realm or Plane may be taken under this skill, provided the character has spent time there.

Theology: Theology without a specialty provides general knowledge of divine relations, politics, origins and history, as well as the basic politics and influences of each church. An individual church and its god may be the focus of a specialty, and normally would be taken by priests of that god. Another specialty is Metatheology, which is the study of metagods such as Asutine and the Void.

Back to Table of Contents


Unless otherwise noted, each language has its own written alphabet, different from that used by other languages.

Human Tongues: Modern human languages are all descended from "Old Common" -- a tongue that has undergone radical linguistic divergence since Devastor. While their written form is identical from nation to nation (and clearly readable by the literate), the spoken forms vary dramatically from one end of the continent to the other. All are Mental/Average, and will default to one another at some penalty. The rule of thumb is to count the smallest number of nations separating the two languages; this is the default penalty. Example: between Duronoth and Zendria are four other nations, making Duronoth 5 nations away from Zendria; Duronothian and Zendrian default to each other at -5.

"Old Common" still exists, as a ceremonial and lore language used by priests and a common tongue used by mages who can enter Cerebrospace; it defaults to any modern human language at -4.

Arake'en: Orcish. M/A. There are two varieties of Arake'en; The Orcish spoken by the nomadic orc tribes is a simple tongue, while that spoken by inhabitants of Arakund has a large number of Elven, dwarven and human loanwords. "Wild" orcs understand Arakundian Arake'en at -5 to their Arake'en skill, while speakers of Arakundian suffer no penalty to their Arake'en skill when speaking to nomadic orcs. Arakundian has its own written alphabet. The nomadic orcs are mostly illiterate, but some tribes use a crude pictographic system.

Gezanner: Gnomish. M/A. Defaults to Kazandar (Dwarvish) at -4. Gezanner shares an alphabet with Kazandar.

Kazandar: Dwarvish. M/A. Defaults to Gezanner (Gnomish) at -4. Kazandar shares an alphabet with Gezanner.

Lamathos: Centaur. M/A.

Mercommon: Merfolk common. M/A. Defaults to Old Common at -5, any modern human tongue at -7.

Sidhaisin: The language of the Sidhai (elves). M/A. Defaults to Yadhaisin at -5. Yadhaisin and Sidhaisin share an alphabet.

Takla: Old Goblin. M/A. Rarely used, as goblins tend to speak the language of their host nation.

Yadhaisin: The language of the Dark Elves. Defaults to Sidhaisin at -5. Any character other than a Dark Elf who knows this language must pay a 10-point Unusual Background -- and explain why he knows the tongue! Yadhaisin and Sidhaisin share an alphabet.

Back to Table of Contents

New Skills

All new skills in GURPS Grimoire and GURPS Religions are available in this game.

Genealogy (M/A) Defaults to Research-4

This is the study of lineages and families. The character must specialize in a particular family or group of families. The character is able to recount lineages and relationships through and across families, and has immediate knowledge of the family's most important history and accomplishments. More obscure facts may be retrieved with a penalty to the roll, from -1 for the name of an unimportant third cousin, to as much as -10 for the color and material of the wedding dress of an obscure relative 4 generations back. Like the Area Knowledge skill, the bigger your area of specialization, the less details you will have at your fingertips. Common specializations are: human royal families, Sidhai or Yadhai clans, the entire Sidhai nation.

Elementalism (M/VH) Defaults to Occultism-4

The study of a particular Element and its Plane. The character must specialize in one of the four classic "Elements": Earth, Air, Fire or Water. While providing no specific magical abilities, this skill gives its user a knowledge of the mystical Element, its Plane and its native inhabitants, and the role that Element plays in alchemy and the structure of Narth. Like Alchemy for Chemistry, Elementalism is often the companion skill to a "mundane" skill -- for example, Elementalism (Earth) and Geology -- and can reveal mystic details that the mundane skill may not cover.

Performance/Ritual (Mental/Average) Defaults to IQ-5, Acting-2, Bard-2

(Freely adapted from GURPS Religion.) The character must specialize in a specific church. This skill gives the ability to perform all the standard rituals of the specific church (holiday, celebration, wedding, funeral, etc.) before a congregation. It includes precise knowledge of the appropriate trappings, motions and prayers, etc. as well as the performance skill necessary to capture and hold the attention of those participating.

Back to Table of Contents

Character Types

A wide variety of character types are available in Narth. Steamship captains, mercenaries, technicians, mages, mage-technicians, bards, clerics -- you name it. Here are some simple guidelines for the more common character types; but these are not by any means the only characters that could be played in Narth.


Traveling entertainers, from single buskers through circuses and mobile theatres to royal bards, are all common to the various human cultures. The elven nations have their own traditions of bards, as well. Entertainers should have any (or all!) of the following: Muscial Ability, Voice; Acrobatics, Acting, Bard, History, Musical Instrument, Performance, Singing. Especially good or well-known performers will have Reputations and even Status. Some bards or entertainers might also be spies or assassins, with Secrets and appropriate skills...


Clerics hold positions of no small importance in the cultures of Narth. The fifty-plus active gods are constantly jockeying for power and position, and this is reflected in the behavior of their churches -- some are allies, some are enemies, and most are neutral to most others. The number of worshippers affects the power of the god, so conversion and persuasion are important, too.

Most of the Clerical character types found on pp. 89-92 of GURPS Religion are appropriate in this setting, although not all clerical types are available in the hierarchies of all gods; email me through the menu link for more details about any specific god.

In general, clerics must have the following: At least one level of Clerical Investment, Patron: Church (see Advantages), Duty to the Church (non-life-threatening), Performance/Ritual (Church) at IQ, Theology (their god) at IQ, and Old Common at IQ. If the cleric is to be able to use divine magic, at least one level of Power Investiture is necessary. Useful are Blessed and Voice advantages, and the Area Knowledge (temple neighborhood) skill. Politics and Leadership are very useful to the high-ranking cleric. Note that in some churches, being too devout or holy may be a political disadvantage!

For specifics on any given god, see the Religion Details page.

For a related (but sometimes wildly different) character type, see Holy Person, below.


Despite constant warring, there is always hope for peace. Diplomats may be dispatched to troubled borders to soothe tensions, or as ambassadors to foreign nations. They may be observers at other nations' conflicts. And some may also be spies...

Diplomats will usually have Patron (Home Nation) and Status, with Fast-Talk and Diplomacy both at IQ; Duty to home nation is typical. Wealth and Unfazeable are very useful, as well.


Sent out by a college, museum or other patron, or simply on his own, the Explorer travels to remote lands to see what's there, and bring back samples for others to see. Much more serious than the Gentleman Adventurer, the Explorer is usually a scientist of some sort, or a trained military person escorting such scientists. Any scientific skill is appropriate. Status and Wealth are common among the self-employed explorers, while a Patron (usually a university or museum) is typical for the rest. Orienteering, Survival, Tracking, and anything else useful is of course appropriate. Sometimes an explorer is unqualified for the trip except in one specific scientific field which is absolutely vital to the expedition's success!


The constant petty warfare across the Jadiwan has produced a wide variety of combat-hardened fighters. When the war in which they fought ends, they may find themselves unable to adapt back to civilian life, and strike out looking for work as mercenaries, bodyguards, frontier bandits, or anything else that will pay, one way or another...

The fighter is the easiest character type to build. High ST and/or DX, weapons and, optionally, shield skill. Armor can be enchanted to be bullet-resistant, if not completely bullet-proof, so even with the availability of guns, armored fighters are still practical; however, Wealth of some level may be necessary to purchase armor. Some mercenaries will have a Patron in the form of a Mercenary Company; such mercs will also have a Code of Honor which reflects their professionalism.

Holy Person

Not all those touched by the gods are in the hierarchies of the churches. Some are madmen with a holy spark. Some are ordinary people who have become beloved of a god for one reason or another. And some are peasants whose faith is so powerful that the god cannot but attend to them.

When it comes to character traits for such PCs, almost anything goes, but they must have at least one of the following advantages, and some may have more: Blessed, Divine Favor, Harmony with the Tao, Power Investiture and/or True Faith. (Those characters with Power Investiture will function much like regular clerics, and will have to petition their god for spells as do clerics.) Also possible, although less attributable to divine intervention, would be any level of luck, up to and including Super Luck (from GURPS Supers). Disadvantages might range from serious mental impairment (bizarre compulsions or obsessions, split personalities), to annoying perfection (certainly an OPH). "Prophets", for example, will often have some variety of Divination as well as a compulsion to tell unwelcome truths; they also will certainly have Enemies! Most holy people will have some kind of negative reaction from established church hierarchies, which would be purchased as a Reputation or, if the character's holy status is not well known, as a Secret. Conversely, they may also have a positive Reputation among common people. Exception: Srah's church actively embraces and supports its holy people.

Gentleman/woman Adventurers:

In the tradition of Earth's own Stanley Livingstone, Sir Richard Burton and many others, Narth has its share of wealthy thrillseekers. These folk, bored with a life of leisure, seek adventure throughout the world. They can be played as serious adventurers or comic relief, depending on their attitude and their competence. Wealth and Status are a must. Survival (any) and a few weapons skills, plus a raft of "genteel" social skills, including Savoir-Faire and Diplomacy. The serious adventurers will be students of cultures, while the less-serious will simply be tourists. They often hire bodyguards, guides, bearers and companions -- who may well be other PCs.


There are literally dozens of orders of knighthood, most predating Devastor. Over the past few centuries, many have mutated and adapted to the changes in society and technology, while others have retained their ancient ways and traditions. Some have taken on the role of "national guards" (The Knights of the Living Bough), others as "marshalls" and other law-enforcement bodies (The Knights of the Star). Others remain bodies of religious warriors (The Warriors of Jayn). Yet others have devolved into purely honorific groups (The Knights of the Dagger).

What a knight character needs depends on the Order he is a member of. Honorific orders confer nothing more than Status, and do not require any combat abilities. Most orders are combat-based, and any basic fighter design can apply here. However, some orders refuse to use firearms, while others refuse to use magic; some make use of both. Most knights will have at least 1 or 2 levels of Status, and usually Wealth of Wealthy or better. Vows and Duties and Riding (Horse) are required for all combat orders, and most require Lance skill as well.

Most gods have an order of knighthood serving them, and many nations have at least one order as well. Email me for specific details.


Build them as you would any typical GURPS mage, except that you must choose an Order (or -- with the GM's approval - - a series of Orders, with an appropriate history, Reputation and other character traits). Your choice of Order(s) will then dictate some of your advantages and disadvantages, and the Colleges from which you may learn spells.

Mages may be scholars, researchers, mercenaries or public servants; their role in most of the human cultures of Narth is not unlike that of any other skilled professional. Skill choice will reflect career path. Magery is, of course, a must. Magical specialists often make a lot of money, if they have studied carefully, so Wealth can be appropriate.

Mages who are not members of an established Order are rogue mages, and must take the appropriate Social Stigma.

Medical professionals:

These may be trained in "mundane" medicine, magical healing, or both. Doctors don't have to be mages, nor do healer-mages have to be doctors, but many are both, mixing techniques where appropriate. Healer-mages usually belong to the Order of Physick, and have its required traits. Doctors may take vows and oaths, but are not bound by the requirements of the Order.

Doctors will usually specialize in one or two races (see Medical Skills). Most will have a combination of medical skills and spells. Medics focus on emergency medicine, primarily Diagnosis and First Aid, although there are some field surgeons. Both medics and doctors are commonly found among mercenary companies and groups of settlers. Status, Wealth and Empathy are common advantages; Sense of Duty is a common disadvantage.


Riding the great central plains of the Jadiwan are many tribes of nomads. Descended from the survivors of nations that utterly disappeared during Devastor, they have adapted to a more primitive, mobile lifestyle. Others are centaurs, members of tribes that have roamed the plains since the Second Day of Creation. Some are orcs who still follow the primitive ways of their ancestors. Regardless of race, nomads will usually be Primitive (-1 TL), and will have Tracking, Area Knowledge (Plains), and either Guns (Rifle) or Bow skill. Human and orc nomads will also have Riding (Horse). Nomads will have their own clerics and other professions; fighter/hunters are not the only possibilities here!


The pre-Devastor period, for all that it was a "Golden Age", was not nearly as advanced technologically as today, and as a result, many mineral ores remain undiscovered and untapped, especially in the blasted zones. The prospector searches out untouched lodes. Some prospectors work for a company (which is a Patron); others are independents. They frequently have Area Knowledge, First Aid, Prospecting and Tracking among their skills. Absolute Direction and Intuition are useful advantages; Compulsive Carousing, Compulsive Spending and Greed are common disadavantages.


After Devastor, huge areas of the Jadiwan continent were laid waste and abandoned by humanity. Over the past centuries, some of these have regained their fertility, and nations may spar over their resources. One way to claim a renewed zone is to send in settlers to colonize it.

Settlers can be of virtually any background or profession, but almost always, they accumulate a certain number of necessary survival skills: Agronomy, Animal Handling, First Aid, Survival, Teamster, Tracking, and various weapons being among them. They are often Poor, but not necesssarily; a Wealthy settler could outfit an elaborate party.


With all the politics and wars in the Jadiwan, is it any surprise that there are spies? They run the gamut from grubby little men listening in corners to the equivalent of James Bond, complete with clever magical equipment to further his mission. Languages, Fast-Talk, Shadowing, Stealth, Tracking and a panoply of Combat skills (including some unarmed combat) are all common. Status and Wealth can disguise the spy's true nature. Some spies do double duty as diplomats...


Wherever humanity and its cousins dwell, there are those who prey upon the careless and the unwary. The Thief is perhaps the second easiest character type to design and play; low Status, Pickpocket, Stealth, Running, Climbing, Guns (Pistol) or Knife make the classic sneak-thief. Other thief-types are just as easily built.

Treasure- and magic-hunters:

When Devastor laid waste to the continent, entire cities vanished overnight, nations and cultures crumbled, and the races of the Jadiwan lost many marvels and treasures in the darkness that followed. Treasure- and magic-hunters search for the lost artifacts of the vanished "golden age", seeking long-misplaced gold or magic of a type forgotten centuries ago, for which a research mage or scientist will pay much. Treasure- and magic-hunters are not unlike prospectors (above); Survival, Tracking, Navigation, Area Knowledge, various weapons are all useful, as are Absolute Direction and Alertness. Greed would be a perfect disadvantage. Some hunters have Patrons who send them out, while others work only for themselves.

These are only a few suggestions for PCs. They can be tweaked, altered, blended or ignored completely! Let your imagination run wild...

Back to Table of Contents

This page was created on October 15, 1997.
Last modified August 14, 2019.