Arcanum 1780: A New World
A typical Apprentice is an educated young man serving as the combination student-servant to a learned professional, be it anything from a Surveyor or Diplomat to a Wizard or Priest. Note that while Craftsmen and Merchants have apprentices, this template is specifically made to model the apprentice of a profession that focuses on formal education – the Apprentice modeled here is assumed to have professional education before starting his apprenticeship. Apprentices tend to be younger sons (who have no real chance of inheriting anything or room for a share of the family business) that graduated in the lower-middle of their class. The role of the Apprentice is to gain as much knowledge as possible while at the same time tending to the demands of his master. For some masters, this makes the Apprentice a secretary-student, while others find themselves with the destiny of a virtual slave in their hands. As with most extremes, the middle ground is most typical – the average Apprentice does 3-6 years apprenticeship under a master as a combination protege-secretary-valet, while picking up valued post-graduate skills. An Apprentice can find himself adventuring for any number of reasons – fieldwork, following or fleeing a master, etc. As is, the Apprentice Templates serves as a good NPC Ally or “Not-Quite-an-Expert” type, but with it’s low cost, the template shines as a source of background for a PC – frex, An Acolyte with the Veteran lens would make a good start for a warrior that left the seminary for the military, and still have plenty of points left to customize.
57 Points (93 Points left for customization)
Advantages: A total of 20 points in increased attributes [varies]; Academic [5/level]; Antiquary [5/level]; Bard [5/level]; Book Learned Wisdom [5/slot + 2/point in slot]; Claim to Hospitality (School, Church or Organization) [varies]; Eidetic Memory 5 or Photographic memory 10; Equipment Bond 1; Explorer [5/level]; Language Talent 10; Luck 15; Magery 0 5; Mathematics Ability [10/level]; Natural Scientist [10/level]; Patron (Master/School/etc) [varies]; Sage [10/level];
Disadvantages: -30 points chosen from among Absentminded [-15]; Bad Sight (mitigator, lenses -60%) [-10]; Bad Temper [-10]; Clueless [-10]; Code of Honor: Professional [-5]; Disciplines of Faith [varies]; Duty (Master) [varies]; Greed [-15*]; Hard of Hearing [-10]; Hidebound [-5]; Honesty [-10]; Intolerance: (Stupid People) [-5]; Miserly [-10]; No Sense of Humor [-10]; Post-Combat Shakes [-5]; Overweight [-1] or Fat [-3]; Skinny [-5]; Stubborn [-5]; Truthfulness [-5]; Vow [varies]; Wealth [Varies]; Workaholic [-5].
Primary Skills: Research (A) IQ+1 4; Savior-Faire (Servant) (E) IQ 1; And 8 points from Calligraphy, Cartography, Speed Reading, Teaching, Writing, all IQ (A); Archeology, Geography, History, Law, Linguistics, Literature, Theology (various), or Mathematics (various), all IQ (H).
Secondary Skills: 6 points in Alchemy, Biology, Physics, Ritual Magic, Thaumatology all IQ (VH); Alchemy (Analytical), Accounting, Artist(Illuminations), Economics, Expert Skill (various), Finance, Law, Philosophy, Religious Ritual (various) all (H) IQ; Architecture, Administration, Connoisseur, Hazardous Materials(Magical),Occultism, Professional Skill (varies), Public Speaking, all (A)IQ; Area Knowledge (various), Current Affairs (various), Savior-Faire (various), or any skill listed under Primary skills. 4 Additional points between Axe/Mace, Boxing, Broadsword, Shortsword, Smallsword, Wrestling, all DX (A); Brawling, Guns (Pistol, Musket, Rifle or Shotgun), Knife, all DX (E); Hiking HT (A); or Carousing H (E).
Background skills: 4 of First Aid, Gesture, Housekeeping all IQ (E); Scrounging Per (E); Observation or Search Per (A); Lockpicking, Merchant, Survival (various), or Traps, all IQ (A); Meditation Will (H); or use 1 or 2 points to increase a secondary or primary skill by one level.
Customization Notes: The following is a list of optional specialties to help focus a Clerk’s advantages and skills.
- Acolyte: An Acolyte is an Apprentice to priest, spending as much of their time tending to vestments as they do learning the inner-workings of the clergy. Latin is a must for any Christian Acolytes. Spend skills on Theology and Religious Ritual appropriate to your faith and a point each in Public Speaking and Savior-Faire (Clergy). If you are investing more in primary skills, Religious Ritual is far more important to an Acolyte than Theology. Disciplines of Faith, Vows and Claim to Hospitality are common, depending on the religion. A good Acolyte will have a smattering of History, Literature and Current Affairs (Parish). An ambitious Acolyte will invest in Diplomacy and Politics.
- Arcanist: The Apprentice to a Natural Philosopher or other professional wizard, the Arcanist is equal parts lab assistant and guinea pig. Magery is a solid investment, as is Luck! Spend points on Alchemy (Analytical), Hazardous Waste (Magical) and Thaumatology. Most Natural Philosophers make their apprentices learn the sciences as much as magic – see Natural Philosopher for more on their scientific specialties, but most Arcanists get at least some exposure to Chemistry and/or Physics. Most Arcanists pick up a bit of Occultism along the way.
- Bookkeeper: The Apprentice in a financial firm, rather than the image of a publisher’s apprentice the name might conjure. Laboring over financial minutiae at all hours of the night, Bad Sight (mitigator, lenses -60%) [-10] is particularly common, as is Skinny and low Wealth. Invest points in Mathematical Ability and skills like Accounting, Mathematics, Economics, and Finance. Current Affairs (Market) is very valuable to any Bookkeeper looking to get out and make real money, almost as much as the less legal Professional Skill (Bookey).
- Cartographer: Cartographers make maps, working as Apprentices to Surveyors as often as under an expert Cartographer. Artistic ability is in high demand for successful Cartographers, so invest some points in Calligraphy and Artist (Drawing) as well as Cartography. Geography is useful, but surprisingly unnecessary for a Cartographer.
- Disciple: A Disciple is the Apprentice to a Sage or Philosopher, dedicated to absorbing as much wisdom from their master as possible. Mostly, Disciples end up being weak-willed Liberal Arts majors that follow some charismatic conman with an ego problem, but a few are genuine seekers of wisdom apprenticed to a man of wisdom. A Disciple typically lives a spartan life, devoted to the needs of their master – vows of poverty and low Wealth are typical. A Disciple needs a point each on Housekeeping and First Aid, and focus on the master’s specialties (often Philosophy). Book-Learned Wisdom, Eidetic Memory and Sage are all appropriate for a Disciple.
- Educational Assistant: An Educational Assistant is the slave…er Apprentice of an established professor in an institute of higher learning. Unlike most apprentices, who get a small stipend for their work, Educational Assistants are often (but not always) paying a university for the privilege of serving a professor! The duties of an Educational Assistant includes research, housekeeping, and covering the professors classes, all while still maintaining ones own studies. Low Wealth is practically universal; Invest in Academic or Antiquary talents, depending on your area of study. While Public Speaking and Teaching are obvious places to put a point, don’t neglect your primary area of study – the area you plan on one day being a recognized expert in!
- Envoy: Apprenticed to a diplomat, an Envoy is tasked with being a gopher to several stuffed shirts, each speaking different languages and angry for different reasons. Language Talent and a handful of languages makes the Envoy’s life a lot easier. Invest in Diplomacy and Current Affairs (Politics), but keep Politics, Housekeeping, and Observation in mind to get you on the fast track.
- Herald: A Herald’s job is not only announcing a nobles entrance to a formal occasion, but keeping track of who everyone else is in a gathering – their names, their allegiances, and especially their weaknesses. Heralds apprentice under Diplomats and other nobles almost equally to Spies. Heraldry and Diplomacy are key skills, but don’t forget about Observation and Connoisseur. Eidetic Memory and Bard serve a Herald well, as does extra PER and Languages.
- Naturalist: Usually working under a Surveyor, a Naturalist tends to have a keen eye and bit of artistic flare, as it his job to chronicle and categorize everything seen on the journey. Artist (Drawing) and Naturalist are the key skills, with Explorer and extra PER being sound investments, but a few extra languages never hurt. Biology, Geography and Mathematics (Surveying) are all good support skills.
*_Squire:_ Although the term squire often sparks images of a young boy learning warcraft at the side of an armored hero, a Squire is an apprentice of a minor noble line learning the trade of nobility underneath a more experienced knight – even the knighted diplomat will have a stable of Squires who’s age ranges from 13 to 30. Duty (Crown & Country) is a good starting point, as is Sense of Duty (Master). A Squire hasn’t earned his Rank or Status yet, but remember to budget points for them in the future! Independent Income and Contacts are also appropriate. Savior Fare (High Society) is the Primary skill of a Squire, along with the profession of his master (Diplomacy, Merchant, etc). Have at least 4 points in any of Connoisseur (any) (IQ/A); Dancing (DX/A); Diplomacy (IQ/H); Heraldry (IQ/A); Leadership (IQ/A); Poetry (IQ/A); Politics (IQ/A) as Secondary Skills and add any not taken into Background Skills. Most Squires will want a Dueling Style.
- Tutor: Technically not an Apprentice, a Tutor of this mold is typically a student paying off his debt though helping others study, which often lends itself to a learning experience for the Tutor as well. Debt and low Wealth are nearly universal – which is why you got into this line of work in the first place – and Workaholic is fairly common. Teaching is obviously the primary skill, but instead of focusing on a single area of expertise like most Apprentices, the Tutor does best with a few points spread out in many different areas. Consider Academic Talent and Book-Learned Wisdom to make the most of a character that knows enough of several subjects to make some money, but not enough in a single area to have a career lined up.
*_Valet:_ Like the Tutor, the Valet isn’t technically an apprentice, but a respected professional that is best modeled with the Apprentice Template. The Valet (often referred to as a Manservant, or My Man by the noble) is a combination Butler-Executive Assistant for a noble, particularly one of military rank. Greed and Stubbornness are ill-suited to a Valet, but Code of Honor (Professional), Selfless and Workaholic are applauded. Choose One of Duty (Master), Sense of Duty (Particular Noble Line), Sense of Duty (One Particular Noble) or Sense of Duty (Crown and Country). The Primary Skills for a Valet are Savior Fare (Servant) + (High Society) and Housekeeping, but don’t forget Savior Fare (Military). Valet’s in military service rarely learn any Tactics or Military Science, but will often have the Infantry Style to represent their training. Many Valet’s have Heraldry and/or Administration, and the Valet of a brash young noble is expected to be his masters Second in a duel, so Guns (Pistol) and a good Fencing Style is appropriate. Finally, a Valet is expected to keep his master in cultured company even among savages, so spend at least 1 point in any of Artist (any) (IQ/H); Connoisseur (any) (IQ/A); Dancing (DX/A); Musical Instrument (any) (IQ/H); Performance (any) (IQ/A); or Poetry (IQ/A).