Rambling about Rangers.
On a recent DW, Jason Cordova mentioned that a player had gotten into the Ranger playbook but wasn’t all that interested in the animal companion move. Which, of course, was a warning trigger because that’s a pretty defining piece of the Ranger. The animal companion has bugged me for a long time.
For one thing, that animal companion comes from a pretty clear source – Drizzt. Right? I mean Aragorn didn’t have a Guenhwyvar analogue. And those are probably the two most quintessential rangers in all of fiction. If you can think of others, name then and say “yes” or “no” to whether they had an animal friend that was integral to their story.
For another, I feel like the Ranger isn’t “shooty” enough. I’d like to see more arrow tricks. I’ve seen an alt Ranger book that takes more of this “huntsman” approach, which is cool.
What I would like to see is a replacement move based on channeling one’s self through an animal (the way it works in Assassin’s Apprentice or Game of Thrones). But I would actually probably use it to replace the Druid’s shapeshifter move, and then replace the ranger’s animal move with something related to hunting and shooting and foraging. To give the Druid back some power (because the shapeshifter move is powerful!), maybe advanced versions of the move let you stay in the animal longer or give you animalistic traits (senses, strength, grace) based on your favored animal.