This is the second post of our ongoing Creative D&D Characters series—based almost exclusively upon 5th edition rules. These characters will be complex and perhaps even challenging to incorporate into a campaign without some forethought and careful planning.
The idea behind this ongoing series is to showcase just how versatile characters can be when your primary resource is the Player’s Handbook. We’ve all fallen victim of going down a rabbit-hole to seek out some esoteric tome to create a truly unique and compelling character but I contend that given just a singular resource and, perhaps, a brief web search you can create a vast array of truly unique characters. That is not say that I think we should shun supplemental material. I happen to enjoy going down the rabbit-hole. But to some, it can be overwhelming. I encourage you to use these characters as you’d like whether they be as NPCs or PCs.
This week I give you Tordek Frostbeard.
Tordek Frostbeard, the Chaotic Neutral Dwarf Rogue“As firstborn my father expected I would take up the hammer and shield just like he did. But, I would ultimately humiliate my father. His shame would drive him to rage and he would commit atrocities for which no dwarf can be forgiven. He has been in hiding for years and he should be praying for a swift death because if the dwarves ever find him he will not receive swift justice. Especially not if I find him.
How did I shame him? Well, dwarves are supposed to be courageous. I don’t want to say I’m a coward, but I did flee from a skirmish that lead to the death of many dwarves. Under the guise of a supply train from Mithral Hall, we had all set out to investigate reports of banditry along the road to Silverymoon. As we’d expected, we were ambushed after a couple of days on the trail.
Before you judge me, understand that we were severely outnumbered. Kobolds aren’t intimidating but this wasn’t just a run-of-the-mill scouting party we encountered. We must have been right on top of their hive. Do you curse someone as a coward for fleeing from a mischief of rats? Nothing good comes from standing your ground against vermin. Had the rest of our group also had self-preservation in mind then they wouldn’t have been slaughtered. Nonetheless, the dwarves fought and before the kobolds could retreat our party was decimated. Survivors ridiculed my father for his son’s cowardice. Needless to say, he was ashamed of me. He accused my mother of infidelity. I couldn’t possibly be his.
After he killed my mother, he fled. No one knows for sure where he is. While I wasn’t formally brought up on charges, I was very unpopular so I left for Waterdeep.
What I Do Now
I make my way by hustling passers-through at Three-Dragon Ante and by building my network of acquaintances. The barmaids, the apothecaries, and even the smithies are all taken-aback by my mild (by dwarven standards) demeanor. Mind you, I don’t outright steal from anyone. But after I’ve negotiated prices below their market rates I may lift a handful of coin from an unwary merchant. The amount I procure is small enough such that only the most scrupulous of misers would notice and I’m wise enough to leave those folks be. My gregarious nature allows me to skim a little here and there and have a decent haul by the end of a tenday. I view these people all as my friends and I commonly give them items I collect from my adventures that are of no use to me. In the long run, they pay for it several times over anyway.
By the way, this abnormal weather we’ve been having has really taken a toll on the farmers growing their barley and hops. These grains are now selling at a premium for rest of the season and what does this mean? Every inn, tavern, and dive bar in the land will be selling waterer-down ale at double their usual rates. I’ve been building a consortium of wise investors like you so we can buy this grain wholesale and then resell it to the brewers. If you’ve got some gold you want to put to work I can help you realize exponential returns on your investment.
Stats & Background Information
Race: Hill Dwarf
Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Level: 3 (Arcane Trickster Archetype)
Weight: 203 lbs.
Hair Color: Reddish-Brown
Eye Color: Blue
Skin Color: Pale
Known Cantrips: Mage Hand, Poison Spray, Prestidigitation
Known 1st-level Spells: Charm Person, Thunderwave, Unseen Servant
Strength: 12 (+1)
Dexterity: 12 (+1)
Constitution: 18 (+4)
Intelligence: 9 (-1)
Wisdom: 12 (+1)
Charisma: 14 (+2)
Favorite Scheme: I cheat at games of chance.
Personality Trait: Flattery is my preferred trick for getting what I want.
Ideal: Friendship. Material goods come and go. Bonds of friendship last forever. (Good)
Bond: A powerful person killed someone I love. Someday soon, I’ll have my vengeance.
Flaw: I hate to admit it and will hate myself for it, but I’ll run and preserve my own hide if the going gets tough.
So hopefully you’ll enjoy the second PC/NPC in the Creative D&D Characters series. If you have questions or comments you can leave them below or on our Facebook page. Happy gaming!
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