In retrospect, I realize that I made an error in introducing material from the Advanced Edition Companion. Not because the supplement is flawed, but because it essentially undermined my whole purpose for going back to the roots of the hobby for this campaign. The campaign began to resemble AD&D in rules and style, and if that was the case, why wasn’t I just playing AD&D? It was time to chuck all the extraneous material and go back to basics and cultivate anew.
One of my primary goals in keeping to the basics and building from there was that I was hoping to create a game that was uniquely my own and not just another standard D&D world. This has been a mental hobgoblin of mine for quite awhile now, one which gets aggravated every time someone decides to expand the types of playable classes and wanders into the same old paladin, ranger, bard, druid, etc. territory. Having seen some of that appear in my own world, I had had enough and was seriously looking to break out of these same old variations on a theme.
It was a route I had taken before with both my Mule and Octopus class—solid, yet unorthodox player classes that explored what you can do with a class-based fantasy RPG—and one I plan to continue following. So, instead of adhering to the classic fantasy archetypes, I’ve become more inspired by other driving forces: “Is it something I’d like to play?” and “Is it something different?” The answers to these questions so far are indeed inspired.
As an example of where my mind had been wandering, an instance I’m most proud of, I’d like to present you with my latest class: the ghost. That is not a metaphorical name; it is a dead adventurer who continues to practice his former profession, unwilling to let a little thing like kicking the breathing habit slow him down.
I’m continuing to tinker with a trader class, one that relies more on role-playing than combat and avoids the granting of magical powers, which is a route I’ve seen before, but never quite understood. There are a few other classes (or races, rather) in the stew pot and I’ll either debut them here or submit them for publication as they come to completion.
The ghost may not be for everyone, and it is certainly not for all campaign worlds. My vision of what D&D continues to change, even more so after a year-plus of old school playing. It is unlikely that I’ll ever return to what I once considered its default settings, and I’m looking forward to what this new territory contains.