A Sundered World: Shaman, Take 2

After giving the shaman a proper shot and getting some feedback from Dan during our last Sundered World playtest, here is where we stand on the starting moves.

I know there are only three, but the spirit companion is pretty robust (and honestly I would b cool with diving it into two moves).

Spirit Companion
A spirit is bound to your flesh and soul. Give it a name and describe it. It can speak any language you do, and unlike an animal it is about as intelligent as a human. Normally it dwells within you, offering you its strength and wisdom. Choose a base:
  • Might +2, Armor +2, Wise +1
  • Might +2, Armor +1, Wise +2
  • Might +1, Armor +2, Wise +2

When your spirit is withheld, you add its might to your damage, its armor to yours, and it’s wise when you discern realities or spout lore about spirits.

When your spirit is released, you suffer any damage it takes, but it can assist your allies:
  • If it helps you or an ally fight, add its might to damage.
  • If it protects you or an ally from harm, add its armor to yours.
  • If it helps you or an ally look for danger or spout lore about spirits, add its wise.

When you call upon your spirit for strength or guidance, roll+CON. ✴On a 10+, hold 3 boon. ✴On a 7-9, hold 2 boon. ✴On a miss, hold 1 boon in addition to whatever else the GM tells you. Spend boon, 1 for 1, to choose an option:
  • You or someone your spirit touches regains 1d6 hit points.
  • Take +1 forward describe how it helps you.
  • Your next melee attack deals +1d4 damage.

Speak With Spirits
When you attempt to attract the attention of nearby spirits through several minutes of singing, dancing, or playing in instrument, roll+CHA. ✴On a 10+, they are pleased and will perform a service for you. ✴On a 7-9, they agree to help you, but want something else in return.

Spirit Sight
When you discern realities, you can ask if there are any spirits nearby.


  1. Is your spirit's ability to make it's own attacks going to be an advanced move?

  2. Nah, if your spirit attacks by itself then it falls to "the fiction" (same as with the ranger's companion or if a hireling tries to fight).

    Now, I am planning on various moves that make it so that your spirit can do more. Like, Mighty Spirit adds the forceful tag, so if you want your bear spirit to tear it up then it is possible. :-)

  3. How balanced is the shaman vs., say, the bard? I mean, even your 'better bard' has to roll to buff others, and only gets 2 of 3 effects for a 10+. Comparatively, the shaman gets 3 free self-buffing effects, two of which are +2, and can freely dissociate their spirit to buff others as well.

    A +2 + 1 +0 spread, or even a +3 +1 -1 spread would make chargen more significant, and the bard a more comparatively equal option. With some sort of mechanic so if the shaman has withheld the spirit and wishes to let it out, it takes time or concentration (choose 1 at chargen) so that the -1 does in fact play a part if they need something urgently or in the middle of battle.

    1. @Ant: This is a pretty old post (nearing a year now), but the shaman has been changed. You no longer roll to hold boon, but roll to activate an effect, similar to how the bard functions.

      The differences (besides what you can choose), is that your spirit can become exhausted, or manifest a personality flaw.

      Mechanically balanced, not sure. We haven't playtested it versus another "support" class, though I will be taking it for a spin in our bi-weekly non-Sundered World campaign. I've seen Melissa play a bard for 6-7 levels.

      The spirit stats are based on the ranger's animal companion (just no +3 option): do you have any experience with the ranger? Is the companion too good? To bad? What would you change, if anything?


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