New Backgrounds

Agent

You are an official or secret representative of an organization, gathering information for the home office.

Skill Proficiencies: Insight, Investigation
Tool Proficiencies: Forger’s Kit
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment:

Who do you work for?

d8 Organization d8 Organization
1 A national leader 5 A conspiracy
2 A church or religion 6 A cult
3 A guild or merchants’ association 7 A criminal organization
4 A military 8 A university or museum

Feature: Web of Contacts

Your intelligence agency maintains a network of informants who try their best to pass on useful information. You know the location of several dead-drops where you can pick up new intelligence, rumors, and news from afar.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Charlatan background.

Animal Trainer

You breed, raise, and train animals for a variety of possible uses. Some animal trainers develop life-long bonds with their animals, while others are uncaring taskmasters.

Skill Proficiencies: Animal Handling, Nature
Tool Proficiencies: A musical instrument, vehicles (land)
Equipment:

Specialty

d6 Specialty d6 Specialty
1 Hunting 4 Messenger
2 Riding 5 Guard
3 Draft 6 Performing

Feature: Eye for Talent

You can evaluate the quality of domesticated and tamed animals, their type of training, and their particular breed (if appropriate). You are also able to train animals in half the time normally required and are able to tame even extremely wild creatures as long as you raise them from a young age.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Guild Artisan background.

Bounty Hunter

You hunt down wanted criminals and return them, dead or alive, to authorities for payment. In some places, you might be the only one brave enough to face down a rampaging villains; in other cases, bounty hunters are opportunistic bullies and killers.

Skill Proficiencies: Intimidate, Survival
Tool Proficiencies: Vehicles (land)
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment:

Feature: Nose for Trouble

In any settlement, you quickly get a sense of who the local trouble-makers are. In addition, you keep up to date on lists of wanted fugitives, and have a general sense of which were last seen near your current location.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Soldier background.

Doom-bearer

Due perhaps to a prophecy, a curse, or just bad luck, you have a strong sense of your own impending doom. While you do not know the exact time or place, you always feel the hand of death just out of sight.

Skill Proficiencies: Religion, Survival
Tool Proficiencies: A gaming set, a musical instrument
Equipment:

The Omen of Your Death

d8 Omen d8 Omen
1 Fire 5 Birds
2 Storms 6 Beasts
3 The Sea 7 The Moon
4 Fog 8 Bells

Feature: The Hand of Death

You have been hounded by death so long that you have learned to sense its presence. You have terrible visions of dread that forebode unexpected dangers.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Hermit background.

Emissary

You are an official diplomat of your country of origin. You are charged with making sure that your nation’s interests are represented abroad.

Skill Proficiencies: History, Persuasion
Languages: Two of your choice
Equipment:

Feature: Diplomacy

As an official diplomat, agents of non-hostile agents are obliged to treat you with respect. You have a certain amount of diplomatic immunity to avoid being tied up in minor incidents, though serious crimes like murder might see you forcibly return to your country of origin at best. When government official make decisions, you can insist that your (and by extension your nation’s) point of view be at least considered.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Entertainer background.

Healer

Whether a professional doctor, country midwife, or folk healer, people depend on a trustworthy healer when they or their loved ones fall ill. The healer is often among the most respected citizens in a tribe or settlement.

Skill Proficiencies: Medicine, Nature
Tool Proficiencies: Herbalism kit, your choice of Poisoner’s kit or Alchemist’s supplies
Equipment:

Specialty

d8 Specialty d8 Specialty
1 Battlefield surgeon 5 Traditional medicine
2 Barber-surgeon 6 Private physician
3 Childbirth 7 Leeching
4 Pain relief 8 Plague doctor

Feature: Do No Harm

When you are not actively hostile, people are far more likely to believe a healer’s peaceful intentions. Many intelligent creatures will avoid killing a healer, preferring to take them prisoner. In times of crisis, when people are sick or injured, your voice stands out as having extra authority.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Sage background.

Judge

You are respected for your wise counsel and knowledge of the law. People come to you to settle their disputes and see justice done.

Skill Proficiencies: History, Insight
Languages: Two of your choice
Equipment:

Feature: Judgement

You are often called upon to offer your opinion upon important matters and solve disputes. During council meetings, trials, and similar events, you will almost always be given a chance to speak purely on the merit of your reputation. You almost always know the laws of the lands you visit and the punishments for disobeying them.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Folk Hero background.

Wanderer

You spend a lot of time on the move, traveling from one settlement to another along the highways, game travels, and hidden paths that criss-cross the world.

Skill Proficiencies: Athletics, Nature
Languages: Two of your choice
Equipment:

Wanderlust

d6 Wanderlust d6 Wanderlust
1 Away from home for the first time. 4 Seeking answers.
2 Escaping your past. 5 Following your whims.
3 Seeing the world while you can. 6 Afraid of slowing down.

Feature: Road-Lore

You are an expert on roads, paths, and trails. You can always give a fair estimation of the time necessary to travel along a given road to your destination. When deciding to set out on a journey, you can, with great accuracy, predict the weather that will occur during your travels days in advance. Finally, when given a choice between multiple roads, you can accurate guess which road will be safer.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Outlander background.

Scion

You are the descendant of a famous individual or a member of a prominent family. Wherever you go, you live in the shadow of your ancestor’s achievements.

Skill Proficiencies: History, Persuasion
Tool Proficiencies: Disguise Kit
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment:

Heritage

d6 Heritage d6 Heritage
1 Royal blood 4 Political powerful house
2 Founder of a religion 5 Notorious celebrity
3 National hero 6 Otherworldly

Feature: Unmistakable

When you want to be seen, no one can deny your heritage: you might be the spitting image of a parent or other ancestor; share an obvious family trait, such as an unusual eye color; or simply just have a certain bearing. You can lean on your family’s reputation to influence people’s opinion of you (for good or ill, depending). In addition, you likely have family members who can shelter you, or you might simply own a family estate.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Noble background.

Servant

You once lived in service to others. This might have been voluntary, working as a maid, butler, or valet for pay, or you may have been indebted, imprisoned, or enslaved.

Skill Proficiencies: Insight, Stealth
Tool Proficiencies: One set of artisan’s tools
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment:

Primary Duties

d6 Duty d6 Duty
1 Cleaning 4 Cooking
2 Dressing 5 Serving
3 Laboring 6 Harvesting

Feature: Overlooked

Servants are often expected to blend into the background and out of the way of their “betters.” When attending a high society event, you know how to disappear among the other servants. Other servants are likely to give you aid and shelter if they can, and are usually willing to spill plenty of gossip about those they serve.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Urchin background.

Soothsayer

You predict the future. You might have done so as a traveling fortune-teller, amusing folks for a few coins. Alternatively, you may have served a famous oracle or powerful spellcaster, interpreting prophecies and visions.

Skill Proficiencies: Arcana, Performance
Tool Proficiencies: One gaming set
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment:

Favored Method of Prediction

d8 Method d8 Method
1 Cards 5 Astrology
2 Tea Leaves 6 Mediumship
3 Palmistry 7 Spirit Boards
4 Dowsing 8 Dreams

Feature: Predictions

You know how to make a modest living by telling fortunes. People, including people in power, often come to you for your predictions. When you make predictions, they are often cryptic and open to interpretation, but usually taken seriously.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Entertainer background.

Trader

You buy and sell goods from many different lands. Wherever you go, you look for new, exotic goods.

Skill Proficiencies: Investigation, Persuasion
Tool Proficiencies: Vehicles (land)
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment:

Specialty

d8 Specialty d8 Specialty
1 Fruits 5 Weapons
2 Spices 6 Gems
3 Metals 7 Devices
4 Clothes 8 Books

Feature: Trade Winds

You always have a sense for whether a price is lower or higher than fair. If someone requests a general good or commodity, you almost always know where you could go to find such a thing for sale. When you discover a new good or commodity, you have a sense of where that good could be greatly desired.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Guild Artisan background.

Treasure Seeker

You are always seeking The Big One. The Payday. The Final Heist. The single event that will propel you to a lifetime of riches beyond your wildest dreams.

Skill Proficiencies: History, Perception
Tool Proficiencies: One set of artisan’s tools, thieves’ tools
Equipment:

Feature: The Big Score

In any region or settlement, you quickly learn of any famous and valuable treasures in the area. You also have a sense of, when comparing any two possible treasures, which is more dangerous and which is more rewarding. You tend to find people with maps or other secret knowledge that can be useful in hunting the treasure, but getting that information from them is up to you.

Suggested Characteristics

As the Criminal background.

New Backgrounds

Adventures in the Borderlands fatangrycat