Friday, 15 May 2009

"Conan. What Is Best In Life?" "Loincloths, Oil, und Muscles"

Although it is the quintessential sword-and-sorcery simulator there is one fantasy archetype that old-edition D&D does not model well. That glaring exception is the hulking barbarian clad in naught but posing pouch, furry boots and horned helm (see example to right).

With rare and honourable exceptions - such as Iron Heroes - it has long been the case that wandering around D&D-land dressed like a Chippendale will get you fatally shanked by dungeon denizens even faster than would mouthing off at the daddy of A Wing.

Some people are quite content with this status quo, but I for one feel it is nothing less than a betrayal of everything Robert E. Howard stood for!

Fortunately for those of us devoted to True Historical Accuracy (tm) in our gaming, extensive scholarly research has been done in the field of alternate armour types by Professors Atlas, Vallejo, Bell, Frazetta and Schwarzenegger of the Correspondence College of Physical Development, Venice Beach, California. It is thanks to their obsessive dedication to the study of glistening biceps, bluging pecs, taut thighs and ...Sorry, what was the question?

Alternate Armour Schema for Old School Gaming Simulacra
(cheesy Conan pose high-fantasy mod.)

Jaguar pattern bikini or posing pouch + magic Frazetta oil = AC7 (12)
Chainmail bikini or fuzzy wifebeater + MFO = AC5 (14)
Brass pan lids or posing pouch & single pauldron + MFO = AC3 (16)

Frazetta Oil is an alchemical item available to the following classes:

Fighters, Thieves, female Elves - Yes
Clerics, Wizards, male Elves - No
Dwarves, Obbits - Oh, hell no!

Frazetta oil, and the specialist garments required to utilise it safely, cost the same to purchase and maintain as the standard armours of equivalent AC value. Excessive muscle development and clinging legwenches/boy-toys attracted by the pungent musk of the oil cause encumbrance equal to standard armour types.

edit: As written this (tongue-in-cheek) mod gives thieves the option of wearing an armour equivalent to plate mail in protective effect. Given the existing strictures on the use of their special class abilities when armoured this should not present too great a problem.

(image shamelessly pillaged from Greywulf. Thrud © Carl Critchlow)

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