2015 Dangoodstuff Award

Once again it's time for the first annual Dangoodstuff Award for Excellence in Games & Other Things I Like.

Award for Most Useful Game Book
Brendan S. - Wonder & Wickedness

It gave only the good stuff, no filler, terse to a razor point, and illustrated by one of my favourite artists ever: Russ Nicholson. This book will come in and out of my games for a very long time.

Honourable mention to +Paolo Greco for publishing this magnificent thing.

Award for Most Underrated Creator of Things

I challenge you to find me another person writing in RPGs who has more surprising and beautiful prose. See? Can't do it 'cos there isn't. I'm putting my money down now: He will one day make a book, a something we can hold, that will make us all cough up a spleen.

Award for Illustrator Most Likely to be Unaffordable This Time Next Year

It's a tie!

Matthew Adams and Jeremy Duncan are everywhere in this tiny corner of games and rightly so. I mean, look that those pictures. 

So there, awards have been awarded for best reading, best looking and best useful of 2015. Collect your trophies at the door. But seriously, contact me and I will send you a trophy fashioned by mine own hand. This ain't some cheapjack award show, we're fancy. Everyone who missed out, just fight harder for my attention and you too may get one, one day.

Changing & Making Fighting Fantasy Characters

Talents are the most significant new thing I noticed in Advanced Fighting Fantasy 2nd Ed. Can't say I'm too fond of them as they stand. They come across as being straight up feats from D&D, which were also not exactly packed with fun, being a list of rule exceptions or extra numbers you could have for being special. Out they go.

Ambidextrous is now the Two Weapon Fighting special skill:
This skill covers the use of two weapons in unison. Anyone possessing this skill may attack, with both weapons, a single or separate opponents. Unlike other skills this is not rolled but is instead a cap on your standard weapon skill. For example, if you wield an axe (skill 3) and a sword (skill 1) and have Two Weapon Fighting at 2, your attacks with the axe would be adjusted to skill 2 while your Sword skill would stay the same at 1.

Animal Friend is no longer supernatural and is instead folded into Animal Lore. Like this.

Elves and Dwarves no longer have standard Dark Seeing. It's boring and, like Animal Friend and Arcane, is an example of a talent whose only purpose is to completely lop off a challenge and potential source of fun.

The other talents are more overtly feat-ey, giving bonuses for not wearing armour or +1 damage with bows. No fun.

If we look a bit deeper to what the intent of these were, I suspect it was to give a little distinction to the heroes, a bit of history. So, what they did in the past. A career almost. Hi Warhammer.

In keeping with AFF2's light footprint it shouldn't have career trees. Instead it'll just have one that defines what you were. What you become is up to you.


Start with:

Skill 3
Stamina 3
Luck 5
Magic 0

Roll 4d6

Assign full dice rolled to stats. luck, skill and magic may only have 1 die each but may also have none. Stamina may have 2.

Roll 3d6, total it.

Assign half the value as 2s and the rest as ones. Assign those 1s and 2s to Special Skills of your choice. (you roll a 13, that's three 2s and seven 1s)

Roll for race

Roll on the talent tree

Roll 1d6 to determine social status, priests get +2

Choose spells and gear and other bits and bobs.

Skills listed for convenience:

Combat Special Skills
Mounted Combat
Battle Tactics
Siege Weapons
Firepowder Weapons

Movement Special Skills

Stealth Special Skills
Sleight of Hand
Trap Knowledge

Knowledge Skills
Animal Lore
City Lore
Forest Lore
Religion Lore
Sea Lore
Secret Signs
Underground Lore
World Lore

Magical Special Skills
Magic Lore
Second Sight
Magic-Mask Magic
Magic-Battle Magic
Magic-Chaos Magic
Magic-Naval Sorcery


Humans +1 Luck
1-6 Settled folk- Allansians, Old Worlders, Hachimanese, even Kazanids. +1 world lore, city lore, religion lore, one other movement or stealth skill

Elves +1 Magic

1-4 Wood elf - Your bog standard elfy elf. +1 Forest lore, Magic-Minor
5 Black Elf - Sad, sad black elves, always confused for dark elves. Maybe you should never have come back to the surface. You have silver hair, black skin, and cat eyes. As Elf but your social score is always 0 except among your own people, but you can see clear as day as long as there is a bit of light and gain +1 Magic and +1 underground lore. 
6 Mountain Elf of Khul - Similar to their forest cousins, but adapted to living in the mountain environment. In Aetos in southern Zamarra, they have even developed a method of flying with the use of mechanical wings. +1 mountain lore, +1 craft

Dwarves +2 Stamina

1-4 Dwarf - A short, belligerent, bearded, dwarf. Light sources are twice as powerful for them. +1 underground lore, crafting.
5 Gnome - Like a dwarf but smaller and grumpier. +1 luck, +1 magic, +1 forest lore, and the ability to turn invisible while no one is watching.
6 Half-Dwarf - You get tired of explaining that you're half ancient god-formed dwarf, not the boring old hairy dwarves you see down at the bank. If you get porked by a dwarf you won't get pregnant. You also won't get the smell of cheap booze out of your bedsheets, so you'd best just burn them. +1 world lore and an outstanding beard. Otherwise mostly human.

(The first time you roll a 6, re-roll. Only keep it if you roll another)

1-2 Man-Orc - Assassin, champion, outcast, slave. You weren't born with many prospects. +2 stamina, +1 world lore +2 language-orc, 0 social standing
3 Fire Island Pygmy - A headhunting midget from remote Fire Island. You start with a stone spear, blowpipe, the ability to fit into small spaces, sharpened teeth (count as daggers) +1 hunting, and crippling culture shock. 
4 Half-Giant of Corda - Rare to see outside of Corda and the surrounding area, and even there they're a bit of a spectacle. Massive, 9ft human-looking thing. +4 stamina, +3 Strength skill, wildly emotional in every direction. 
5 Man-Troll - Pot bellied, hook nosed, prone to fits of spite and name calling. +1 skill, +2 stamina.
6 Rhino-Man - The original Rhino-Man was created by an insane sorcerer several centuries ago, but rebelled and killed him. They are fairly rare creatures, serving as formidable and loyal guards to those who can afford their services. +2 stamina, use their horn as a dagger (lance if they get a run up), and count their armour as being one up due to their thick hide (so leather cuirass becomes a hauberk)


These talents do not effect your choice to be a wizard or priest or whatnot. These are all in the past and you may have changed since then, but old skills can still come in handy.

All these bonuses are in addition to whatever starting gear or skills you may have.

You can't buy these with XP.

Anything marked with a * can be re-rolled if you aren't human. Or you can just make it work.

1-2 Adventurers

Adventurer - You're a restless guy with a taste for wizard slaying. In addition to whatever else you may have you start the with +1 luck. 
1-2 Battle Scarred Veteran - There are no shortage of wars to go around, but you've managed to take more than your fair share. You start with +1 luck, a polearm. breastplate, half empty bottle of Blacksand rum, and an old war buddy. Name him and roll up his stats. 
3-4 Demon-Stalker - Never one to pick the easy life, you staked your reputation on the ability to hunt and kill the creatures of chaos. +2 Second Sight and own a silver sword (or other appropriate silver weapon), can speak demon, and create a Dark Veil. The veil makes you invisible to demons of the abyss but they can sense you vividly (a la Frodo puts on the ring). 
5-6 Gladiator - A pre-eminent entertainer who broke the mould by retiring in one piece. +6 spread across at least four different Combat skills, and +1 skill & stamina. 
1-2 Hachiman Samurai* - A legitimate samurai (you swear) from Hachiman, come to live among the barbarians. Own a katana, +1 in Kyujutsu (Archery), Kenjutsu (swords) and Ni-to-kenjutsu (two weapon fighting), ability to use Iaijutsu (Fast draw, test your luck to hit before your opponent).

3-4 Knight of Salamonis* - A bastion of civilization in a hard and unforgiving land or militant racial purists. Depends who you ask. Start with a chainmail cuirass OR a large shield, both with the crest of Salamon placed prominently upon them. +4 to any combat skills. Can smell sorcery (smells like brimstone). Has 2d6 Amonour (weird fame currency of the Vale of Willow) 
5-6 Templar Knight of Telak the Swordbearer - Fanatical inhabitants of the Demonkeep Outpost, set to keeping constant watch over troublesome Brice. +2 to any combat skills, 5 Devotion (if they ever get trained in magic, use this or the standard formula, whichever is best) and have access to the blessings of Telak (p92 of the core rules)

1-2 Kazanid Swordsman - The Kazanids are renowned for their bravery and their acceptance of any creature or being that can stand up to their hard and, some would say, savage tests. Start with a sabre, fetching topknot, +2 combat skills, +2 movement skills, +2 stamina, rowdy yet endearing attitude.
3-4 Mauristatian Vampire Hunter - Nestled in mountains and covered in thick forest, Mauristatia has produced some of the most famous vampire dynasties of all time. Much to their dismay it's also a prime spot to find uppity vampire hunters, though they're quite short lived in these parts. +1 bow, +1 sword, +1 religion lore, can use Ward and Banish as though they had 5 Devotion, string of garlic, holy water, silver stake. 
5-6 Monk of Arn - One of the various orders of reclusive monks from the Isles of the Dawn, worshippers of Arn, the one true god. +1 skill, robes, baldness, +1 staves OR +1 brawling, +4 movement skills. 
1-2 Warrior-Priest of the Citadel - an order of warrior-priests based in Gallantaria, fashioned after their Ruddlestone partners who inhabit the Demonkeep Outpost. Dress in hooded, flowing robes and skull-caps, and are trained in the ways of magic as well as battle. The order was established shortly after the War of the Wizards and they are devoted to conquering Chaos within the kingdom. +1 to any combat skill, +1 Magic, +1 Magic-Priestly and have access to the blessings of Hamaskis (p92 of the core rules)
3-4 Chaos Champion* - Ex chaos champion, thanks. You no longer have the spiked armour and mask, but you're covered in ritual scars and haunted by nightmares. +5 points to spend on any Combat skills and you still have the eye of your chaos patron. He's happy for you to experiment with not laying waste to his enemies, but the door is always open. You may call upon your patron for aid, and have a chance of an audience (roll 3 6s on 3d6). To name your patron grab 1d3 handfuls of scrabble tiles. 
5-6 Horse Nomad* - The Nomadic barbarians of the Flatlands are dangerous enemies but while they continue to fight amongst themselves they will remain a harmless foe. Starts with +1 Ride, +1 mounted combat, +1 Archery, +1 world lore and a fine horse.

3-4 Academics

1-2 Allansian Wizard - The wizards of Allansia pluck magic out of the air like delicious cosmic fruit. +1 Magic-Wizardry, +1 magic, a terrible haircut OR ridiculous hat, and robes.
3-4 Old World Sorcerer - An older and more defined discipline, Old World sorcery uses the same arcane energies as wizardry but instead of taking them from the surrounding environment they draw it from within. The down side is the requirement of foci for much of their magic; sorcerer's are often recognised by their green wigs, a favourite and useful arcane tool.  +1 Magic-Sorcery, +2 stamina, a green wig.
5-6 Priest - The priesthoods of the primary religions of Titan can expect aid and respect when travelling in their own lands but are bound to uphold their faith. +1 magic-priestly, a holy symbol, priestly attire.

1-2 Southern Mask Magician - Mask Magic is a an idiosyncratic discipline that uses enchanted masks to bring about change in the wearer. Most practitioners studied Mask Magic in Kaynlesh-Ma (Arantis). +1 Magic-Mask Magic, knowledge and possession of 1 random mask. 
3-4 Apprentice to the Grand Wizard of Yore - You were a pupil of Vermithrax's wizarding school in the Forest of Yore, producer of innumerable famous wizards now poncing around the world's courts or meddling in things they should best let lie. Graduate or not, it's quite a reputation to carry about, with most people awaiting your inevitable rise to greatness. Gain 1 point in Magic-Wizardry, +1 Magic and +1 Luck. 
5-6 Red Priest of Traole - Worshippers or Arn at the temple of Traole, capital of Sunara in the Isles of the Dawn, renowned for their penchant for exorcisms to remedy almost everything. +1 Magic-priestly

The One God
Specific Power:
The priest may rebuke someone once per day who is acting innapropriately. This someone can be a person, an animal, a monster or a force of nature. Whatever it is, the priest must roll under his Devotion and if successful causes the rebukee to retreat, apologise, or otherwise feel shamed.
General Powers:
Red Priest at the Altar of Earnest Entreaty
Sage - You're a classic academic, a product of the universities of Salamonis or Kaynlesh-Ma. +5 across 3 lore skills, writing tools, sample case.
Necromancer - The least popular magical practitioners. Shunned by the major centres of learning, they're left to their own devices on the edges of society, passing on knowledge in the time honoured master/student dynamic. +1 magic, +1 magic-necromancy, +1 sneak, pasty skin, always sweaty, physically OR mentally questionable henchman (name + stat him)
Alchemist - No longer stuck behind a sweaty alembic, you're off for some field study. With a successful skill test an alchemist can identify and point out any uses of plants and minerals. They may similarly taste-test gasses or consumables with a 1 in 6 chance of the effect doing its thing. Start with a mortar & pestle and a first edition copy of either Megellan's Witty Retort OR The Quest for Purest Green.

1-2 Wodewitch - A bitter old swamp crone or cunning man, maker of remedies and curses. +1 magic-minor +2 social status among peasants, a black cat OR a raven that can speak when no one else is listening, +1 magic lore.
3-4 Old World Numerologist -  By conceiving the heavenly cycles according to commensurate numbers with a cause, and by determining measures of the heaven according to certain mathematical ratios, one can grasp the universe firmly. +2 secret signs-maths, +2 lore skills, a very sharp compass (counts as dagger), once per week you can test you secret signs-maths to gain a sudden useful insight into a problem. 
5-6 Tattoo Magician - A rare but sought after style of magic, tattoo magicians are usually found in port cities and are usually indistinguishable from their swarthy mundane counterparts. +1 Magic-Tattooing, 1 random magic tattoo, 3d6 non-magic tattoos, bundle of tattoo needles, selection of mundane tattoo inks, +1 Tattoo Lore.

5-6 Scoundrels 

1-2 Beggar - People look down on panhandlers, but you know it takes more than an empty bowl to work the streets. You start with a begging bowl, a wooden leg OR missing eye OR superficial but disturbing skin disease, +2 City Lore and 0 social standing.
3-4 Slave - Galley slave, body slave, field slave, there are as many slave types as slave owners! +1 Strength skill from all that barge toting and bale lifting, +1 swim OR climb OR dodge from your daring escape.
5-6 Thief  - A fixture of city life, the card carrying thief often has cause to take to wandering. Enemies come thick and fast from both sides of the law. Start with +2 stealth special skills, +2 movement skills, roll of lockpicks and a grappling hook.
1-2 Urchin - Your mum was a prossy and your dad was a dustbin, you were raised by rats and graduated from the school of hard knocks with a degree in petty theft and dance.  +2 to any Stealth skills, +2 City Lore. 
3-4 Gremlin Catcher - You think rat catching's hard? You obviously haven't ever crawled around in a gremlin warren. You start the game with a small but vicious dog, a flat cap, a club, a sack, a jar with a pissed off gremlin in it, and the ability to fight in tight spaces without hindrance.
5-6 Ninja - An actual ninja. Where you came from is anyone's guess, but you always seem to turn up in the weirdest places. You have a sweet ninja outfit, +2 sneak, +2 climb +1 secret signs-ninja.
1-2 Brigand - Between Titan's remote islands of civilization there's no law but what you bring with you, and you left yours at home. You start with +1 Hunting, Ride and Swim. Roll a d6, on a 1-3 you ran off with you old gang's loot (+6d6 pennies left), on a 4+ they just think you did. Either way they're gonna come and get it back one day.
3-4 Blacksand Pirate - Blacksand! City of Thieves and Cut-throats, ruled by the dread pirate Lord Azzur. Never a more vital and vicious place to call home, which you proudly do. You start with a cutlass OR boarding axe OR pistol, outlandish clothes, a (small, mundane) pet bird OR monkey, +2 Sea Lore, +2d6 pennies (if you roll a double 6 you get no bonus but have a fabulous buried treasure somewhere hard to reach and adventure worthy)   

5-6 Slaver - Helping people meet people was your job, human resources if you will. +1 Evaluate, +1 in 2 different languages, +1 ride,  a gnarled club, a set of manacles.