I have a bit of a problem with characters. It’s not an unusual one, but I think I have it to an unusual degree. It’s that I create characters with an extremely high power-to-common-sense ratio. It’s not that I can’t do common sense, it’s just much funnier if I don’t.
Probably my favourite example of this was Nicky. The backstory for Nicky was that his family had some sort of father-to-son power assumption ritual. The father dies, the son then inherits his powers. Not in a lump sum, but it results in them pumping out a good few levels of sorcerer much more rapidly than one might reasonably expect.
Unfortunately Nicky’s dad waited till late in life to have kids and popped his clogs early. The result was a sorceror with more levels than years. I think when I started playing him Nicky was level 15 and 10 years old.
Nicky really played up to his powers, although he didn’t get it quite right. He wandered around in a big robe, wore a floppy wizard’s hat and carried a wand with a giant star on the end and a minor enchantment to make it sparkle.
Nicky had almost no combat spells. Fireball? Nah. Lighting bolts? Boorrring. Really there were only three spells he cared about. Flight, Telekinesis and, well, we’ll get to the third one in a moment.
The party had been sent to help out a wizard who was having some monster trouble. We arrived at his house and while the rest of the party were still sorting out precedence Nicky walks up to the door and bangs on it. Wizard opens the door, sees this adorable little tyke in a ridiculous costume at his door. Goes into full patronising-adult-talking-to-small-child mode.
Conversation goes something like this:
Wizard: Well, hello there. Who are you?
Nicky: Hi! I’m Nicky! I’m a sorceror!
Wizard: Oh, are you really? I’m not a sorceror, I’m a wizard. Do you know what that is?
Nicky: Yes, it means you need books! That’s silly! I don’t need books, I just cast spells!
Wizard: Oh, um. Yes, that’s right. Do you know a lot of spells?
Nicky: Well… I do know *one* spell…
(At this point a giant “Oh fuck” look dawns on the rest of the party’s face. GM knows exactly what’s coming but bravely refuses to break narrative)
Wizard: That’s very good, Nicky. Can you show me?
Nicky steps back, brandishes his giant sparkly wand and points it at the wizard.
Nicky: FROGGY! YOU’RE A FROG!
(DM rolls saving throw for Wizard and flubs it)
The next 10 minutes of gameplay were spent with the rest of the party trying to persuade Nicky to turn the nice wizard back into a human being. Nicky behaves like a typically stubborn child and refuses to play nice.
Eventually they managed to persuade him to turn the wizard back. Nicky totally shouldn’t have listened to them - the wizard turned out to be the villain of the piece and was nowhere as easy to turn into a frog the second time (Nicky tried, but I don’t think he succeeded so I think our party fighters just beat him to death).
I alas no longer play with the group in question, so Nicky is lost to the mists of time. I’ve no idea what happened to him, but one thing I do know: I’ve done the maths and he’ll be hitting epic levels and puberty at about the same time.