AGE Specializations in Blue Rose (Ronin Roundtable)

Today marks the launch of the Adventures in Aldea series, starting with the Mistress of Gloomhale Manor for just .99! (Previously published in the Six of Swords adventure anthology.) If you enjoy that one, be sure to check out The Sixth Beast, also on sale today, and come back each day this week for another Blue Rose PDF adventure!

Since this is Blue Rose week at Green Ronin Publishing, let’s take a look at some ways to adapt other AGE products into your games in Aldea.

 

From the Noble to the Spirit Dancer, the Assassin to the Inamorata, Blue Rose gives players an awful lot of options when it comes to choosing specializations. There’s pretty much something in there for everyone and every play style.

Though that doesn’t mean we can’t look to other sources for even more choices!

Consider, for instance, the Sword Mage (from the Fantasy AGE Basic Rulebook); how might such a specialization fit into a campaign set in Aldea? Well, firstly, the mage class doesn’t exist in Blue Rose, but the Sword Mage easily converts over to a class requirement of adept, with no other mechanical alterations necessary. Of course, the term, “mage” also isn’t used in Aldea, so a name change is in order. Maybe “Arcane Knight?” The word “knight” necessarily implies some kind of organization—a knightly order, as it were—so the title could certainly work if that’s the route you’d prefer to take. What if you’d rather not have to consider the implications of a new group of this sort in Aldis (or whatever other nation), however? Perhaps, then, you might consider calling the specialization “Arcane Blade,” which has the same essential meaning as “Sword Mage,” but with an altogether Aldean spin.

Pretty simple, right? But what about a specialization that doesn’t translate quite so neatly?

Let’s try the Marked (from the Fantasy AGE Companion), as an example. The basics of converting the Marked to Blue Rose are the same: change out the requirement of the rogue class to that of the expert, since those are essentially equivalent for our purposes (and keep warrior, as normal). The Banemark looks to be a little too potent, as written; why not choose “shadowspawn” and receive +2 to attack and damage the majority of creatures most PCs will be fighting in the average campaign? Instead, it might make more sense to divide shadowspawn into “beastfolk” (such as troglodytes, ettins, and harpies) and “shadow monstrosities” (mock hounds, wyverns, chaos beasts, and the like), to prevent a single Mark from providing too much of a benefit. Then, there’s the matter of the Mark of Magic, as there is no Arcane Blast equivalent for the adept class, making that Mark a bad fit for the setting. In its place, this might make for a more authentically Aldean body modification:


Soulbond Mark: Whenever using a relationship to generate stunt points (see Chapter Two: Character Creation, in the Blue Rose Core Rulebook), consider that relationship’s Intensity to be one point higher.


How about something even further afield from the normal Blue Rose experience: the Gunfighter (again, from the Fantasy AGE Companion)? There are no black powder weapons in Aldis or any of its neighboring nations, but crystons fit pretty well into that mechanical and narrative niche. Again, swap out rogue for expert as a class requirement. Also, rather than training in the Black Powder Weapons Group, it makes sense to switch to a requirement of one or more arcane talents (as this is necessary to wield a cryston, anyway). Beyond that, all that’s needed is to change every reference to ‘firearm’ to ‘cryston’ (and the name of the specialization to something like ‘Crack Shot’ or ‘Cryston Marksman’), and you’re good to go!

You might decide that these specializations have always been around, whether overtly or in secret, in your version of Aldea, or you might want them to be new developments—perhaps recently arrived on Aldis’ shores from far-away lands, or even from other worlds (like Yarrion, found in Chapter Nine: The Blue Rose Series, in the Blue Rose Core Rulebook), accessed through previously long-lost and forgotten shadowgates.

With a few tweaks, here and there, and a little bit of consideration as to how best to fit into the world of Aldea, you’ll find that most of the specializations from the Fantasy AGE Basic Rulebook and the Fantasy AGE Companion can work just fine for any Blue Rose campaign!

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Stephen was seven years old when he decided he wanted to work on RPGs for a living, and he’s enjoyed the good fortune to do so for just a little over 20 years, now. His writing credits include works for White Wolf, Onyx Path, Storm Bunny Studios, and—of course—Green Ronin (where he’s also been getting the hang of this whole developer thing). Outside of gaming, Stephen is a seemingly random collection of crafty, artistic, and academic hobbies, a powerful yearning to pet all of the planet’s dogs, and a tentative-yet-growing interest in fitness and the circus arts.