Class Warfare

Class Warfare

Class Warfare

I’ve been flipping through CW. I don’t think I’ll use it for customized classes because it looks like it’ll just bog down the character creation process, but it is a huge list of compendium classes. The requirements for some of these things look like adventures! I really like the Golemist. Check him out, and his CC requirement.

Is anyone using Class Warfare to let their players build custom classes? If so, I’d love to see what combinations have been built, and the result.

16 thoughts on “Class Warfare”

  1. I’ve used CW to build a custom class.

    You are correct in assuming it would bog down character creation for everyone.

    It sounds like you are interpreting the intent as, “Everyone use CW to build your own custom class and we’ll start from there.” That is not how I used it, and I doubt that is the intent of class warfare. It would be a mess and your campaign would never get started.

    When I’ve used class warfare is because the player wanted something that was not available with what they had. We worked together over a two week period to build a custom class that fit their needs. If you wanted to do this for everyone… you could, but I wouldn’t suggest it.

    You are correct in looking at the compendium classes, many of the requirements are adventures (or consequences of adventures). This is a great place to find hooks that you (or your players) find interesting.

    In general, compendium classes are an easier way to bring a lot of diversity and additional flavor to a character. I would suggest starting by building a compendium class, before a full blown class. You might find that the CC actually fits all your needs.

  2. Thanks Yoshi Creelman​! Yeah, I was thinking “let’s start a new campaign, everyone make a class with CW”. I can see how doing it over a period of time could be really good! I haven’t had a chance to look up the podcast yet, but I fully intend to.

  3. It only bogs down character creation compared to the “Pick one of these classes” method DW normally uses. It takes like, ten minutes to go through and pick three archetypes, a few more to fluff it out, and boom, done.

  4. Brian Holland has everyone played DW a bunch, are you just tired of the standard classes? Do people have a burning desire to do something specific?

    I’d answer those, and make sure the standards don’t work for you first. One of the things that DW excels at is giving you the tropes as a skeleton to hang everything else on. I find those tropes and familiarities bring a lot of value to getting things running quickly and a way that everyone at the table understands what is going on.

    Even if it did take you only 10 minutes (I don’t think it will) I think you loose a lot just by steering away from the familiar.

    That being said if you and your group are old hats at this, and have played DW a lot maybe it is time to just have a character building session where you all build the world and new character classes to live in the world…

  5. I’ve played several Class Warfare characters, mostly in one shots. It’s definitely a “build your character before the session” thing, rather than the pick up and play of a pre built playbook.

    I’ll be the first to admit that characters built this way very rarely gel as well as those built out of a proper playbook. A playbook (at least in theory) will have been playtested and built with every move designed to work together, while CW has thousands of combinations; if you choose sensibly you’ll make a character that works, but the mechanics probably won’t have the same harmony because all those moving parts just can’t take each other into account. And on the other end of the spectrum, there are a few combinations that are, shall we say, acutely optimized.

    All that said, sometimes it is a very good way of making a character that a playbook just doesn’t quite work for. For example, my most recent character was a thief named Quade, and I wanted him to actually be good at thieving instead of focusing on poisoning and backstabbing people, which The Thief doesn’t really do (no stealth moves in that class, ever notice that?). So I built him as a Shadow/Thief/Blue Mage (he can steal magic, too!). Worked well, without the extraneous competence or curious lack thereof that The Thief would’ve brought to the table.

    Prior to that, the last one that I played for more than one session was Fiera. I wanted to recreate the Shadowdancer class from DnD, so I made a Shadow/Assassin/Shadowmancer. Captured the flavor of the original class very well, and I enjoyed playing her–though Shadow and Shadowmancer together created some very narratively powerful stealth, which was a bit difficult to adjudicate when it came up.

    So yeah, I’d say it mostly works, just keep an eye out for corner cases like that and try a self-contained playbook instead if you can find one that fits your character.

    Edit: also, speaking of the Golemist, I was farting around and rolling up random combinations the other day and came up with Golemist + Spellsinger (I forget the third). Took me a minute before I realized: that’s totally Kubo! Good times.

  6. Yoshi Creelman​​​, I’ve run my campaign for about 6 months. It will be ending soon and I’ve joined as a player in another group. I wouldn’t say there’s been a NEED for it, but there are just so many cool things in it that I wanted to see how others were using it. It looks like a good way to flesh out some background (how did you come first realize you could do this? When did you decide to specialize in that? )

    I think my players can handle it, but the group I’m in now is pretty new to DW.

  7. James Etheridge​, yeah, we’ll definitely have to build before hand. Hearing that from a couple of you really helped.

    I’m looking at combining Golemist with Elementalist, and don’t don’t know what my third will be (or which of those archetypes to choose it from).

  8. Yes. Just review the actions of the PCs at the end of each session, then look through CW for appropriate specialties or just individual moves, and select the one that seems most appropriate. You can do this with the base classes, too, there’s just less material to work with.

  9. When I played GURPS I had this character that was the Wielder of the Dragontooth Spear/Glaive. No GM would run the character because Dungeon Fantasy discouraged customization (which was a weird thing to do in light of it being GURPS, but actually part of the reason I straight up quit GURPS). The first chance I got to play the character was 3 years later with a Destroyer/Strongarm/Wielder. Since I already had an idea in mind, just having access to CW made Character Creation a veritable breeze for me. My next character idea is a Fool/Good Samaritan/Sage but I don’t have any bites for that one yet.

  10. Josh C​ that’s a good point. If you have a concept in mind it can go really quickly. It’s when you have a player staring at a huge list of options without a clue what he wants that will bog things down.

  11. Tommy Rayburn I would choose based on the intended genre. So, in a standard D&D type setting, I would start with the base classes, and have them printed out on the table so the players can keep them in mind when they decide what kind of stuff to do (which is much harder to do with CW). If I was running something more Game of Thrones, I’d review or print out stuff like Householder and Landed Gentry (or maybe borrow some gangs and followers moves from Apocalypse World).

    Either way I’d probably bookmark a few specialties based on player interests and what kind of GM stuff I plan on introducing, especially supernatural stuff. Like, if you mention that there is shadow magic in the first session, you know some player is going to try to mess around with that.

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