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Author Topic: [5e/D&D] Backgrounds - the BIG list of backgrounds!  (Read 347347 times)

Skyrock

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« Reply #60 on: November 29, 2014, 05:30:02 PM »
3 proficiencies is too much. I would drop the herbalism kit as it overlaps with Medicine anyway.

I'd also tone the background feature down to the ability to speak to nature spirits, and their general willingness to help or at least avoid attacking the shaman. Individual groups can then decide if they want to make a roll, leave it to role-playing or in extreme cases attack the shaman outright anyway (like when they catch him looting their tomb of an opposing shamanistic faith).
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zeek0

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« Reply #61 on: November 29, 2014, 09:04:25 PM »
Alright, I toned down the Commune With Spirits ability so that it is less mechanical.

I don't think that I'll remove a proficiency. After all, the blowgun does 1 piercing damage to its target; hardly game-breaking. I was surprised that it was a martial weapon in the first place.

As I understand, herbalism allows the character to make potions and such, while medicine is stabalization and slow healing. Am I incorrect?

hollis

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« Reply #62 on: December 21, 2014, 07:04:45 PM »
Is this thread still active? I came up with this thinking of an Indiana Jones sort of Adventure Archeologist background.

Relic Hunter
Skill Proficiencies: Stealth, History
Tool Proficiencies: Thieve's Tools
Languages: One of Your Choice
Equipment: A rare or valuable relic not returned to the intended recipient,
A Small knife, set of Dark common clothes, Belt Pouch
containing 10g

Origin:
You've spent years pursuing ancient artifacts, relics, tomes
and incunabula. Perhaps you collected these bits of history
for a library, a museum, an archive, a University or a
private collector. Sometimes you had to rely on your ability
to hide to evade capture or you had to sneak into a forbidden
place to gain access to an otherwise inaccessable object.

You discovered some piece of history that you just couldn't
return to your employer. Did your contact die and the new
person in charge wants to turn the library into a gladiator
stadium? Was the library burned to the ground by Orcs? Were you
offered payment that could not be fulfilled? Or perhaps you
found a powerful magical item that gaev you insights previously unknown to you.

Suggested Characteristics:
You aren't a common burgler. You know what you seek from
years of study and research and don't mind getting dirty
to recover relics lost to time. You are devoted to preserving ancient history
and knowledge for it's own sake, or sometimes you find we can
learn from our past.

Feature:
When you attempt to learn or recall a piece of lore, if you
do not know that information, you often know where and
from w hom you can obtain it. Usually, this information
comes from a library, scriptorium, university, or a sage
or other learned person or creature. Your DM might
rule that the knowledge you seek is secreted away in an
almost inaccessible place, or that it simply cannot be
found. Unearthing the deepest secrets o f the multiverse
can require an adventure or even a whole campaign.

Personality Trait:
1.) I am elocute and convey the impression of erudition through my manner
of speaking.
2.) Given the choice, I would save an ancient relic before
I would save my friends.
3.) I wax poetic on history and lore with everyone I meet — whether
they want to hear it or not
4.) I've read every book in all the world's libraries — or
I like to boast as much
5.) I always have a plan of escape should things get too dicey
6.) I will kill someone for destroying a place of knowledge which houses
ancient relics (library, university, museum, etc)
7.) I am histrionic and take offense to every mundane triviality imposed
upon me
8.) I am impatient with those who do not understand the value and
importance of preserving the relics of our past.

Ideal:
No Limits: Nothing should get in the way of preserving the relics of
our past. (Chaotic)
Charity: I will find a good and secure place for the relics I
find (Good)
Selfish: Some relics hold power that I will keep and use for my own
purposes (Any)
Greedy: I collect these relics and extort the highest price for them
on the black market (Evil)
Aspiration: I aim to write a book on the Histories of the Ancient World
based on my travels. (Neutral)
Honor: I only recover relics for officially sanctioned institutes of
learning (Lawful)

Bond:
1.) I seek vengence against those who destroyed the library/university/
museum/etc that I collected relics for
2.) I lost a valuable relic and seek to rediscover it
3.) It is my duty to protect the relics of the past
4.) I work to preserve a library, university, scriptorium,
or monastery.
5.) I have been searching my entire life for a specific relic
6.) I hold an ancient relic that holds considerable power and knowledge
that must not fall into the wrong hands

Flaw:
1.) I am easily distracted by the promise of information concerning the
location of a relic
2.) Preserving a relic once lost to time is worth a few lives if not an
entire village
3.) I speak without really thinking through my words,
invariably insulting others.
4.) I hide when things start to look bad
5.) I have no respect for the illiterate, dumb and stupid
6.) I will lie about the worth and significance of a relic if it will
benefit me financially or socially

Bloody Stupid Johnson

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« Reply #63 on: December 22, 2014, 08:00:26 AM »
Adventurer's Whelp

One (or both) of your parents was an adventurer, and the call of it is in your blood. Maybe you grew up with stories of your parents' exploits, or maybe you desperately want to know what happened to your father oh-so-many years ago.

Skill Proficiencies: Insight, Knowledge (History)
Tool proficiencies: cartographer's tools
Languages: one language.

Equipment: a set of fine clothes, your parents' diary or a faded map to a dungeon or foreign land, a vial of ink, a ten foot pole, a boot knife, 20 gp in a belt pouch.

Feature: allies. Either you can occasionally get some sort of support, magic, or information from your parents themselves, or allies/acquaintances of theirs will periodically offer their aid. This operates wholly at GM discretion.


Personality trait (d8)
1. I often quote stories of my parents' exploits
2. I try to collect stories of what actually happened in my parents' lives.
3. I try to hide from my parents' reputation.
4. My parents travelled far, so I live by the codes of a faraway land.
5. My parents taught me their livelihood, but sometimes all I really want is a common life.
6. I grew up watching wealth squandered outrageously, money means little to me.
7. I inherited a casual roughness or shamelessness that can shock my companions at times, such as readily taking to graverobbing or changing my armour in public.
8. My fathers/mothers profession is something I'm quite familiar with, I sometimes seem to think like one of them rather than what I was actually trained in. Perhaps I'll follow in their footsteps one day.

Ideal (d6)
1. I must live up to my parent's legend (Good)
2. I will finish what my parents left unfinished. (Lawful)
3. I will find what became of a missing parent (or one of their companions).(Good)
4. I will prove that I'm better/different person to my parents (Good/Evil)
5. I'm all about the adventure and excitement (Chaotic)
6. I must seek vengeance for my parents.


Bond (d6)
1. I feel a kinship with other children of my parents' adventuring party.
2. I serve the same lord my father served.
3. I was raised to revere my parents' deity above all else.
4. I was given a memento of my parents, yet lost it. It must be retrieved.
5. My parents incurred debts that still have to be repaid.
6. The gold is all that matters, I picked up that much.


Flaw (d6)
1. I'm the child of a hero, dammit. Give me some respect.
2. I'll never be as good as them
3. My parents' enemies yet haunt me.
4. I have been marked by magicks that afflicted my parents
5. I believe I have an inevitable destiny, and too easily behave recklessly.
6.My parents stories sometimes lead me to apply dungeoneering skills inappropriately, such as by mapping taverns I walk into or checking new suits of armour for traps.

njbrig89

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« Reply #64 on: January 13, 2015, 01:44:07 AM »
I created a blog to document my custom encounters an character backgrounds. Check it out!

https://dndencounters.wordpress.com/

Wood Elf

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« Reply #65 on: January 15, 2015, 08:52:07 PM »
I must say that I particularly like Relic Hunter and Adventurer's Whelp. Well done.
Vel Arte Vel Marte

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« Reply #66 on: February 13, 2015, 05:55:00 PM »
Hi all
First of all, sorry for my bad english, it is not my main language but anyway, I am trying to share. I made this background because one player in my campaign wanted something like this, and there was nothing similar in the PHB.
I accept all comments (including negatives ones, obvious)

Fearful

Your childhood was difficult, full of bullying or sad/violent episodes. You are afraid of everything unknown to what can attack you . However, your curiosity to see the world 's largest . That infighting allows you to channel your fears improve yourself.

Skill Proficiencies: Sleight of hand, Stealth
Tool proficiencies: Disguise kit
Languages: One of your choice
Equipment: a disguise kit, a small mirror (to spy where are you going), a sachet of sand (to throw in the eyes of enemies and run away), an alchemist fog, sachet of oil (to throw if someone is chasing you), map of the region (nothing worst than be lost)

Feature: Your fears give you the strength to overcome difficulties. When you are in a scary/hard situation, you gain advantage in one attack throw, or saving throw or ability check once per day
(If anyone have a better idea for the Feature, are welcome :) )

Personality:
1. I can find always a place where to be hide
2. My charmfull gives me the possibility to be with good partners, strong ones, who can defend me.
3. My curiosity is higher than my fears, and this is too much.
4. My good sense of humor makes me a good partner in all groups
5. Being polite and respectful will give me a lot of opportunities in society.
6. If i need to manipulate people to survive, it´s not a problem

Ideal:
1. Brave soul: Curiosity will make overcome all my fears.
2. Greed: I need to use my fears in the correct way, using people to being rich and powerful.
3. Community: The only way that the people can overcome their fears is in community, with the help of others.
4. Destiny: I know that my destiny is outside, in the real world, no matter I am afraid of all there.
5. Friendship: Material goods come and go. Bonds of friendship last forever
6.  Tradition: I come from a family of adventurers, fighters and mages. My lineage and blood make me an adventurer although my fears.

Bond:
1. I am really afraid of the outside world, with all these dangerous creatures and amazing places...but it is so interesting
2. I don´t want to die young, really. I have panic of fighting. But the easy money cames from adventures, so maybe, some strong fighter can take me with him.
3. I need to recover the good name of my family, clan or tribe although my fears
4. I can´t fight. I can´t argue with a high rank. But i am so so good lying and it is so funny.
5. It is easy to build regards and make you a great name and respect. Do your remember this time when I killed the dragon alone? Was amazing
6. My love to my wife, child or father/mother makes me to overcome my fears, I need to rescue he/she.

Flaw:
1. I can´t stay visible in fights, any shadow is good to hide.
2. My life is more important than anything
3. I don´t want to use them as puppets but is necessary
4. A shining item is stronger than the idea of survival
5. When someone yells me is impossible for me not to cry
6. I can´t be alone in the dark. Perhaps another can do the guard
« Last Edit: February 13, 2015, 07:49:39 PM by cbaqac »

DailyExorcism

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Hunter Background for D&D 5e
« Reply #67 on: March 01, 2015, 04:26:01 PM »
This background has a lot of similarities with what you might get from a Ranger choosing the Outlander background. However, this background is built with more of an anti-social spin. As a hunter, you live for the pursuit and kill of your prey. It may or may not be a job, but the intense nature of this lifestyle leaves it consuming you. As a result, you're not just living on the fringes of society, but you rather cast off society to live in nature with the kill or be killed lifestyle.

Please let me know what you think, this is my first attempt at creating my own...well...construct for D&D, Pathfinder, or Shadowrun.

Hunter Background

Skills: Perception, Survival
Tool Proficiencies: Hunter’s Kit (15 gp)
     -Block & Tackle (1 gp)
     -Fishing Tackle (1 gp)
     -Hunting Trap x2 (10 gp)
     -Rope, hempen (1 gp)
     -Dagger (2 gp)
Languages: Choose a language of a common intelligent prey (e.g., goblin, orc).
Equipment: Any type of light armor, one simple melee weapon, one pack appropriate to your character’s backstory, and a shortbow with quiver and 20 arrows.

Context of Hunting Experience:
Trader (hunts for trophies such as pelts)
Commoner (hunts on land and sea to survive)
Orphan (hunted to survive)
Nobility (hunting successfully was a rite of passage)

Feature: 6th Sense
When you can see a prey clearly, you often get a gut feeling related to the vulnerabilities, weaknesses, and behavioral tendencies of this animal. This instinct is based on your experience as a hunter and knowledge of the wild beasts you’ve encountered. You can use this instinct to guess any trait specific to the animal in sight (e.g., vulnerabilities and behavioral tendencies).

Note that each gut feeling (which will presumably motivate a given action in your hunt) requires a perception check with a DC of 15. The prey must be within 60, 45, or 30 feet if the animal is larg(er), medium, or small(er), respectively. The guess requires no prior knowledge or experience with this prey. You have a 50% chance of guessing correctly; you have a 75% chance of guessing correctly if you succeed on your perception check with a DC of 20.

Suggested Characteristics:
The character should be a loner at heart and at least somewhat anti-social. After all, true hunting is impeded by the untrained and untested would-be hunters that abound in society. A hunter can have any moral alignment (e.g., good, neutral, evil), but would rarely have a lawful alignment. Nature’s laws enforce themselves, it is simply our job to not get in the way.

Personality Traits
I dislike society. I need my personal space intact but am not well-versed in other social niceties.

People smell. I’d gladly take a vial of deer urine over the repugnant delusions of grandeur that abounds with most commoners and nobles.

How am I supposed to think with the sound of all of you breathing, fornicating, and…living echoing all around me?!

A solid *thunk* is the most satisfying sound in the world.

Ideal
Honor. The death of any living creature is a tragedy, though sometimes unavoidable. Death should not be in vain. Good

Freedom. Freedom to act in any way that does not harm others and preserves the balance of nature is a sacred right. Neutral

Might. Glory is not in the circumstances of the hunt, but in the outcome. If your prey dies, then you’ve succeeded. Evil

Challenge. A true hunter does not quarrel with unworthy prey. Trophies come from only the most worthy of prey. Any

Bond
Nature is my ally. All those who live to destroy the natural balance of our world must perish.

A(n) [insert animal/race here] killed my [insert family member here]. I live to hunt down their kind.

The [insert animal/race here] is the scourge of my land. Nature will be out of balance until they exist no more.

Nature has an inherent balance, which is thrown into chaos when an animal/race has no natural predators. I live to preserve the balance by hunting those hunted by no other.

Flaw
Nature must be preserved, and death is part of nature. I am blind to my shortcomings when a hunt is concerned.

I am consumed by my hatred for those that infringe on the rights and freedom of others. I will succeed in eradicating my enemy no matter the cost.

I am consumed by my hatred for [insert animal/race here]. I will succeed in eradicating my enemy no matter the cost.

I freely express my disdain for lesser hunters, no matter the odds against me. The world will know me as the ultimate hunter.

zeek0

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« Reply #68 on: March 02, 2015, 07:25:22 AM »
Good Hunter Background. I like the characteristics and personality traits that you list, they are very flavorful.

However, it is useful to note that WotC put special care that background Features would not be combat or skill abilities. No matter how you spin it, your 6th sense feature is a combat ability (because what would you do with the knowledge gained, except use it to exploit a weakness).

As I see it, Features are roleplaying aids, not stat modifiers.

Also, the feature is redundant with many aspects of:
Nature(Int) - "your ability to recall lore about ... animals"
Animal Handling(Wis) - "intuit an animal's intentions"
Perception(Wis) - "lets you spot, hear, or otherwise detect the presence of something. It measures general awareness of your surroundings and the keenness of your senses"

Gryffn88

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« Reply #69 on: March 03, 2015, 12:28:08 AM »
These are all great ideas but is the a set listing anywhere for them? It's hard to got through each list and then comments when my gm only wants to see the backgrounds themselves.
Thank you,
Gryffn88

Terateuthis

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« Reply #70 on: March 27, 2015, 07:20:00 PM »
SLAVER

Despised by most societies, yet perversely needed by many, you traffic in human(oid) flesh. Your status depends on your surroundings: In more despotic or cruel lands you operate openly, while in more enlightened polities you are reviled and relegated to the shadows. Either way, human(oid) nature being what it is, there is a place for you.

Interesting that you, who specializes in binding ordinary humanoids, ended up in the company of freedom-loving, extraordinary adventurers. Then again, they’d fetch a fine price at market, wouldn’t they…?

Given the unsavory nature of this Background, you might want to be an ex-slaver: possibly having turned against your guild or even joined an abolitionist movement.

Skill Proficiencies: Intimidation, Medicine
Tool Proficiencies: restraints*, vehicles (your choice of land or water)
Equipment: 2 sets of manacles, 50’ silk rope, whip, branding iron, healer’s kit, fine clothes, pouch with 15 gp

Feature: Slave Coffle
You skim the cream of the crop – or the worst of the worst, or the most docile of the docile – for your own use. You have 1d6 personal slaves (treat as commoners/unskilled hirelings) who obey your orders. Each slave’s upkeep is 5 cp/day. Thoroughly cowed and broken by you, they are treated as friendly, but each slave’s real feelings toward you are as follows (d6): 1: friendly; 2-3: indifferent; 4-6: hostile. The DM rolls this in secret; you are unaware, though you might suspect.

Slaves will likely not die or fight for you… though they might, depending on how much you have broken them… but they will do nearly anything else. Between adventures, should you be in a slaveowning area, you may replace the members of the coffle, but you must pay the standard market price for such slaves.

Regardless of their attitude toward you, it is almost inconceivable that your slaves would not make a break for freedom if the opportunity presented itself, and break you in the process….

Alternate Feature: Scum and Villainy
While loathed by most, you are also ubiquitous. You have a diverse network of customers and contacts, possibly including crimelords, nobles, wealthy merchants, cultists… any who barter in flesh for work, pleasure, or sacrifice. If you are in an area that openly or covertly harbors the slave trade, you can meet or make a contact, who might trade information or favors on a quid pro quo basis. Keep in mind, of course, that most who have no scruples about involving themselves in slavery would likewise have no scruples about betraying your trust.

* New Tool: restraints (includes manacles, ropes, chains, etc.)
When you restrain a prisoner with tools, add your proficiency bonus to the DC of an escape attempt.

PERSONALITY
  • I'm callous, coldly indifferent to even the worst suffering.
  • I'm wracked by moral qualms over what I do (or have done), convinced that an afterlife of damnation awaits me.
  • I’m philosophical about my vocation, full of elaborate rationalizations about how some are natural slaves.
  • I constantly appraise everyone I meet, predatorily scrutinizing them, looking at their teeth, and silently evaluating their probable worth on the auction block.
  • I am an aficionado of the grotesque, specializing in exotic specimens to sell to discriminating clients and endlessly fascinated by physical and mental freakishness.
  • Having seen no few emancipated slaves become slaveholders themselves, I am cynical to a fault. Civilization is just a big stinking slave pit; everyone would do as I do if they could get away with it, and I take pains to remind the pious of mankind’s venality and hypocrisy.
  • I exhort my faith in the most proper and righteous deities, tithing extravagantly and showily, declaiming my profession as a necessary evil in pursuit of the larger good of civilizational advancement.
  • If I have renounced my profession, I work tirelessly to turn others to the cause of freedom and enlightenment. After all, if I can be redeemed, anyone can.


IDEAL
  • Master and Servant. Life is a great chain of dominance and submission. Equality is a lie. All must find their place in the hierarchy, serving or being served. Submit to your masters just as you expect submission from your slaves. (Lawful)
  • Greed. You are an alchemist, turning flesh to gold. You care not a whit for your chattels’ suffering so long as the coin flows in. (Evil)
  • Caprice. For you, the key to control is unpredictability. You are an earthly god, your coffle subject to your ever-changing moods. You might manumit a slave on a whim, at your expense, or brutalize another for equally trivial reasons. (Chaotic)
  • Freedom. You once were blind, but now you see. You have renounced your profession and now believe that freedom is the right of all sentient beings. Perhaps you even use your knowledge and contacts in service to an abolitionist cause. (Good)
  • Necessity. Slave trading is an ugly business, but the world is an ugly place. Those walls and pyramids have to get built somehow. Slavery is the grease that lubricates civilization, and you do what you must to keep it flowing. (Neutral)
  • Karma. Nothing happens randomly; the wretches in your slave coffle must have done something for fortune to frown on them so. You are merely the agent of their purgatory. (Lawful)

BOND
  • None has escaped my grasp. None ever shall.
  • Only those deserving – criminals, debtors, and the like – are enslaved by my hand. In fact, I seek out and free the truly innocent, for I am pure in my impurity.
  • I am a professional. I treat my slaves as well as can be managed, take pains to keep them healthy, and conduct myself with scrupulous honesty in dealings with customers.
  • I see myself as patron or matron to my dear little bondlings, imparting wisdom, cultivating virtue and grace, and preparing them for lives of exalted service in the houses of the great.
  • I take pains to enslave the savage humanoids – orcs, goblins, and the like. Far better that these heathens be taken into proper society, taught the ways of civilization, and perhaps find redemption through toil than simply be exterminated.
  • I belong to a slavers’ guild. I am a careerist and climber, with all the politics and rivalries that entails. I will undertake the most dangerous missions to prove myself to my superiors.


FLAW
  • An expert at scourging others, I like to be scourged myself. I seek out those who traffic in domination, submitting myself to their abuse and reveling in the pain they inflict on me.
  • I drink or drug myself into a stupor to stomach what I am.
  • A dangerous slave – a barbarian, gladiator, possibly even sentient monster – escaped my coffle and has sworn revenge against me.
  • I sell slaves to entities beyond the pale of civilization – aberrations, undead, demonic cults, or the like. Should this be found out, even the most tyrannical humanoid governments would sentence me to death.
  • Having become accustomed to my slaves performing tasks on my behalf, I am shockingly lazy, especially in the physical sense.
  • I fell in love with and released one of my slaves. This person has bound my heart in chains as unbreakable as any of my own manacles. I would do anything for this one, and s/he knows it.

GamingGrl

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« Reply #71 on: April 28, 2015, 10:47:44 PM »
OMG this is an amazing thread! Thanks so much for all of it!
Kelley
Creator of The World's Easiest Role Playing Game
http://worldseasiestrpg.com/

Christopher Brady

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« Reply #72 on: May 04, 2015, 01:06:28 AM »
Quote from: zeek0;818546
Good Hunter Background. I like the characteristics and personality traits that you list, they are very flavorful.

However, it is useful to note that WotC put special care that background Features would not be combat or skill abilities. No matter how you spin it, your 6th sense feature is a combat ability (because what would you do with the knowledge gained, except use it to exploit a weakness).

As I see it, Features are roleplaying aids, not stat modifiers.

Also, the feature is redundant with many aspects of:
Nature(Int) - "your ability to recall lore about ... animals"
Animal Handling(Wis) - "intuit an animal's intentions"
Perception(Wis) - "lets you spot, hear, or otherwise detect the presence of something. It measures general awareness of your surroundings and the keenness of your senses"


Also, the Hunter shouldn't give weapons or full gear, like a pack, as part of the equipment list.  That's what the classes do.
"And now, my friends, a Dragon's toast!  To life's little blessings:  wars, plagues and all forms of evil.  Their presence keeps us alert --- and their absence makes us grateful." -T.A. Barron[/SIZE]

GamingGrl

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« Reply #73 on: May 04, 2015, 05:32:34 PM »
These are all so awesome and stir up some great ideas! Thanks!
Kelley
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http://worldseasiestrpg.com/

Nawak

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« Reply #74 on: May 05, 2015, 08:02:41 AM »
Hi,

First message - I just finished a layout for a PDF document (2.5 Mo - international A4 - 21 x 29.7 mm) containing backgrounds found online (therpgsite, enworld, dndwiki, etc.). I did not translate it in my native language, use it as you wish.
:)