Friday, June 29, 2012

Character Application: Playtest Wizard

I submitted the following application for a DnDNext playtest game.  I'm not sure if I'm going to get to play him, and that's ok.  Two games is enough for me!  But I thought that I'd share the application here for safekeeping, if nothing else.

Name: Arrelon Illafel
Gender: Male
Race: High Elf
Class: Wizard
Deity: Corellon


Unlike most high elves, Arrelon prefers to keep his brown hair cut short; it's less of a hassle that way. This reveals something of his personality: while always one to work hard and an excellent student, Arrelon prefers to go his own way when moved to do so, rather than follow some rigid program. This sometimes gets him into trouble--he has been passed over before for awards and honors due to what his instructors deemed recklessness or lack of responsibility. In truth, however, he's really more of a free spirit than a troublemaker.

Arrelon is of slightly below average height for elves. While of a slender build, he is fond of running as a way to rejuvenate his body and clear his mind in between long bouts of study. And study he does--Arrelon enjoys playing with magic, and often will try variations on established spells just to see what would happen.

To friends, he is generous and kind. He tries his hand at humor with some frequency, though in truth many of his friends would say that he hasn't quite got the knack for it...but they usually humor him with a chuckle anyway.


Arrelon's parents were both products of a long line of wizards in Sraekin. In fact, his mother, Gilonna, was an illusionist at the Moonsong Academy, a prestigous wizardry school in the capital city of Sraekin. His father, Saelas, on the other hand, was a bit less ambitous. While blessed with some skill in the arcane arts, he bounced from job to job throughout most of Arrelon's childhood. He dove into each new project with gusto, but often would quickly lose interest when challenges were met.

It was natural for Arrelon and his two sisters to join the academy as they came of age. For his part, Arrelon was recognized early on as having a special talent and passion for magic. Unfortunately, within the rigid curriculum of the academy, this did not always bear fruit. Many students were content to learn magic by rote memorization, but he preferred to treat each new spell as a toy with which he could play. Unfortunately, rather than focus on the assignments at hand, Arrelon frequently would get wrapped up in related, but irrelevant, issues. As a result, while he discovered ways to cause his mage hand to appear with anywhere from three to seven fingers, not to mention make obscene gestures, he was two weeks late in learning the competantly deliver a shocking grasp. As much as he tested his instructors' patience--and earned low marks at times--he always eventually caught up with the rest of the class.

His mother had long talked of having her three children join her as instructors at the academy. As his graduation approached, however, Arrelon realized that this was probably not to be his path. For one thing, his grades probably weren't good enough to get such a job, despite his mother's influence on the faculty. Moreover...a life of syllabi, due dates, examinations, and papers just wasn't appealing.

When he saw the duke's announcement requesting adventurers, he was intrigued. It seemed like a great opportunity to experience new things and explore the world! His parents, and especially his mother, were not enthusiastic...but ultimately conceded. With his pack on his back and staff in hand, he closed the door on his house, taking his first steps on the path to his new adventure.

RP Sample:

Arrelon knocked at his mother’s chambers. “Come,” said the voice inside the door. As he entered, she looked up from her desk, where scrolls and parchment were scattered everywhere. Her face turned to a frown. “Arrelon, I understand that you still have not completed your paper on displacer beasts for Master Alcook. It was due yesterday. Graduation is in just two weeks. Can’t you just get this last assignment in so that you can graduate?”

“I just submitted it mother. Spent the whole night working on it,” he said with a penitent smile as he sat down.

His mother signed. “Good, at least that is done. Still, the late submission won’t help your marks, and you’ll need all the help you can get when you apply for the instructor position we talked about.”

“Yes, about that mother. I’m thinking…” he paused. This wouldn’t be easy to break to her. “I’m thinking about an alternative.” She immediately frowned, but he hurried on. “The duke has posted an announcement requesting adventurers to act as first responders against some of the recent disturbances we’ve experienced. I was thinking about tossing my hat into that ring.”

Taken aback, he shook her head. “Absolutely not. That is a job for the foolhardy; you have too much talent to go getting yourself killed by some random goblin. Arrelon, what happened to your plans to join the academy?”

He expected this response. “Mother, you said yourself that I was going to need all the help I can get. Master Alcook can’t stand me, and most of the faculty seem at least annoyed with me. You know I love magic. But I’m just not sure that the academy is for me. This is an opportunity for me to do something with my life. I think I'd learn more as an adventurer than I would teaching cantrips.”

Gilonna sat silent for a moment; her son’s words rang true. She gave him a sad smile. “It has always been a battle for you here, hasn’t it? We’ll have to discuss it with your father this evening…but I don’t see him standing in your way. I don’t like this, Arrelon, and I fear for your safety. But perhaps you’re right. The Duke certainly does seem to need some help, and this might indeed be Correlon’s will for you. I have two conditions, however. One, you will be careful. I’ve seen too many students rush off to be adventurers and never return. You will need more than just your spells and cantrips to survive out there; you need to exercise caution, not bravado. Two, keep in mind that you can always apply for a position with the academy at some other date. In fact, some success in this path might aide your application.”

Thank you mother. I honestly didn’t know whether you’d agree. I will be careful. As for the academy...we'll see.” After a short embrace, he left her chambers before she could change her mind. I hope I’m not being an idiot, he thought. He set off to his dormitory to pack his things.

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