Ruffian Rogue (v1)

For most, roguish arts are best done in secret, under cover of night and with the utmost silence. But even in the most clandestine of occupations, sometimes you need a little… punch. Someone a bit stronger. To break the kneecaps of your enemies, basically.

 

-Rogue- Ruffian v1

You can also find the PDF version here.

 

The Ruffian is an odd sort of rogue. Rather than skillfully flourishing blades to best strike at an enemy’s weakest point, these rogues prefer great big clubs to bash people over the head with. While crude, it is quite effective at, well, getting your point across. Even if you’re a bit… blunt with the delivery.

 

FEATURES:

  • Forget daggers, go straight for the clubs, the maces, the halves-of-brick-in-a-sock!
  • Sometimes how a message is said matters more than the message itself. Especially if the message is said by someone you’ve beaten to hell – that tends to leave an impression.
  • On second thought, maybe don’t forget daggers. Your enemies might, given the club you’re beating them with, but that’s fine. Sudden knifings are the best part of clubbing!
  • A good crack upside the head is good for a lot of things. Sure it hurts, but hit ‘em hard enough and you’ll leave them reeling and stunned.

 

DESIGN NOTES:

  • Ah, the Strength rogue. A persistent desire, it seems. Right up there (and yet still noticeably behind) the ever-burning fire of “arcane half-caster.”
  • In any case, the Ruffian is meant to be the muscle of the thieves’ guild. Sneaky burglars and cunning assassins are all well and good, but you need someone of a more thuggish bent to keep those paying their dues in line. A good cracked kneecap never hurts! (Well, it never hurts you, but…)
  • As far as game design goes, the main power here is getting to use smaller clubs for Sneak Attack, despite them lacking the Finesse property. This, in turn, means the rogue can use Strength instead of Dexterity, both for their main attack and their later dagger-based offhand attack. It’s all about unique ways to deal damage.
  • On a side note, the flavor feature – Sending a Message – is something I want to make sure to get feedback on. It feels fun, and I know where I’m coming from with it, but I want to make sure that’s not just me. Plus it reads a little like an old AD&D feature, and given the number of 2e books I’ve been reading recently I worry it might’ve bled over.
  • Other than that, my concerns are few. I’m interested in damage output, as usual, and I always want to know how well it fits the theme. Nothing pops out as being stupidly/unexpectedly powerful though, which is a good sign. Not to say there isn’t something like that in here… I just can’t see it.

 

Thanks for reading!

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