DON'T HIT ME
Small (-1 Toughness)
Bad Luck (1 less bennie per session)
Danger Sense (Free Notice roll at -2 to avoid attack)
Quick (redraw an initiatve card less than 5)
Strong Willed (+2 to Taunt/Intimidate)
Rapier (+1 Parry, for a 7), Damage d6+d4, Buckler Shield (+1 Parry, for an 8), Throwing Knife Damage d6+d4
DON'T HIT ME is an agile fighter who relies on not getting hit. With his rapier and shield, his Parry is an 8, and he needs every bit of that because he's running on fewer bennies than the rest of his team. Notice that he is Quick, which gives him the chance to react faster than most, and his bonuses are high enough that in some situations he'll be willing to take the penalties and Trick or Taunt before attacking, Shaking the opponent if he scores a high enough result (meaning that his damage only has to beat his opponent's Toughness and not get a raise). He can also use his Tricks to set higher parry allies up for HULK SMASH to land a crushing blow. In other cases, he will split up his Taunt and Attack over two rounds, banking on getting his +2 from Taunt while his opponent is still Shaken.
In a pinch, he keeps a throwing knife on hand to whack a guy with from a short distance, but that is definitely not his focus.
Berserk (Smarts roll upon being wounded, or go Berkserk, +2 Fighting/Strength rolls, -2 Parry, +2 Toughness, rolls of 1 hit random adjacent target)
Brawny (+1 Toughness)
Great Axe (Armor Piercing 1, Parry -1 for 4), Damage d10+d10, Chain Hauberk (Armor +2, for Toughness 9)
HULK SMASH is mean and unlikeable, and the other guys keep him around because his unBerserk Toughness is a 9 and he deals out d10+d10 damage. Working in tandem with DON'T HIT ME and even MR. WIZARD and FEARLESS LEADER, HULK SMASH can crush guys who have their defenses softened before he even gets there. His biggest weaknesses are his vulnerability to Tricks and his Fighting...his Parry is actually a plus for him, because he WANTS that first hit to slip past his defenses: as his Toughness rises alongside his Strength and Fighting rolls. He will most likely need to spend bennies to become unShaken, due to his low Spirit, so hopefully he's prepared to earn some with his Hindrances. He has no ranged ability, nor does he want any.
Trademark Weapon (longbow)
Longbow 2d6 damage, Leather armor (+1 for Toughness 6)
SNIPER has a (Minor) criminal past, and he's the opposite of HULK SMASH personality-wise, refusing to rush headlong into battle. Instead, he will get anywhere he can out of immediate danger and fire away with his longbow, which has been handed down in his family for years. He can even peg a target from horseback or while riding on a wagon. He can make a token effort at defending himself in melee, but not much more than that. Moreso than the rest of of the crew, he just doesn't want to be seen if he can avoid it.
Knowledge (Arcana) d8
Arcane Background: (Magic)
Crossbow, nice clothes (fraying around the edges), cane
I went off of the Archetype reservation a bit of MR. WIZARD, intending to make a doddering old man with magic powers, when I felt compelled to instead making a rogue-ish, middle-aged man with a gambling habit and the inability to hold onto his coin. He's nominally the adviser to FEARLESS LEADER, a dapper gentleman who is incredibly put together from a distance, but you see that he's frayed a bit around the edges as you get closer. Bordering a bit on pathetic, his eyes are failing but he refuses to admit it. He is still a Magic User, but all of his magic is incredibly subtle (as it needs to be, considering FEARLESS LEADER doesn't truck in this supernatural nonsense). He keeps a crossbow on hand to zap at people in a pinch, but he commonly works in a support role come Combat time, helping out with Tricks as well as bolstering his allies Traits as needed. His specially designed cane was a gift from FEARLESS LEADER, helping to steady the crossbow to avoid penalties. I was going to also make him an Alcoholic (Minor Habit), but that would have clashed with the Attractive. He's also the guy on the team that Knows People in low places. So, yeah, he's no Gandalf/Elminster/Merlin...sorry.
Knowledge (Battle) d6
Code of Honor
Shortsword d6+d6, Plate (+3 Armor for 8 Toughness), Hirelings
FEARLESS LEADER is armored up and ready to go. He's a so-so fighter at best, but he has a small handful of hirelings to do his fighting for him. He's Lucky, giving him an extra bennie to toss around, but right now, that's just planning for the future. He's also, essentially, the Face Man of the team...his Charisma bonus working alongside his Persuasion skills to end fights before they can begin, when possible. However, he does insist that it's his way or the highway. Note, also, the Knowledge (Battle): It's not in play much right NOW...but yeah. He spreads his money around to keep the rest of the team where they need to be to keep him alive.
So, there's the cast. The setting assumption is a low-magic fantasy setting (Mr. Wizard almost got an archaic gun instead of a crossbow), all of the character are human, etc. I will MOSTLY be sticking to the Explorer's Edition, perhaps with a little Fantasy Companion, as I level these guys up, but I do reserve the right to pluck Edges from other books if I choose.
The next article will bring them through to Seasoned, adding three Advances apiece.