In addition to the option to create your own characters, my upcoming RPG Wyrd Street features a suite of “Iconic Characters,” who have established classes and identities. Iconic Characters are still heavily customizable in both role-play and mechanics, but they give an easy starting point that allows your character to feel rooted in the world, with existing relationships and connections.
There is one Iconic Character for each class. Today, let’s take a look at the Iconic Vigilante, a woman known only as Blue Rose.
Rose is the owner of the Rose Garden bordello and in many ways the de facto leader of the Wyrd Street community. She is fiercely protective of her employees, and as a result the Rose Garden is one of the safest places in the slums.
I think the Iconic Character system was one of the greatest risks I took when designing Wyrd Street, but it’s been very well-received by play-testers, and Rose has been one of the greatest examples of how much freedom players have to interpret the Iconics. Across the various tests, different people have played Rose as a protective momma bear, as a stern leader, or as an irresponsible disaster.
As a Vigilante, Rose is excellent at defending her allies against the worst the slums might throw at them. Most of Wyrd Street’s class concepts started as “dollar store” versions of traditional fantasy classes, and Vigilante is Wyrd Street’s take on the paladin archetype. It also draws significant inspiration from comic book superheroes.
The result is a resilient melee class that excels at protecting themselves and their friends. With the right build, they can also become Wyrd Street’s premiere mage-slayers, with abilities that increase their mental resistance, counter enemy abilities, and punish foes when they spend focus.
Vigilantes are one of only two classes in Wyrd Street that have discrete subclasses. They can choose to follow the Pursuit of Justice to gain some supportive powers, or follow the Pursuit of Vengeance to hunt down single targets with ruthless efficiency.
They can also boast some limited ranged capability through a selection of exclusive sidearms, and at higher levels they gain some powerful mobility with the Grappling Hook Expert ability.
All in all, the Vigilante’s strength, courage, and flair for the dramatic all combine to make it the perfect class to represent Blue Rose.
All that said, if you like Rose but not the Vigilante, you can always ask your GM to let you change her class. In earlier versions of the game, she was the Iconic Scoundrel, and her backstory could also easily justify her as a Drifter or a Brawler. Iconic Characters are there to be a starting point, not an end point, and they’re yours to customize as you see fit.
Before I go, I’d like to leave you with an early sketch of Rose from one of our artists. The details are still subject to change, but it gives you a taste of what’s to come.
Wyrd Street is coming to crowdfunding this March. Stay tuned to this blog for more teases and updates as the date approaches.