Saturday, January 15, 2022

Character Creation Challenge: Sherlock Holmes

Today I want to wrap up my tour of the Victorian era with two of my favorite characters of the time, Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson. 

I have, sitting on my hard drive or a flash drive somewhere the stats for Holmes for every Victorian-era game I have ever played.   I keep meaning to post them and never get around to it.  So of course today is a set of stats I am coming up with now.

The issue with doing Holmes in many games, but modern occult ones, in particular, is that Holmes does not live in a magical world.  He lives in a world with predictable laws of science that follow predictable patterns.  This is what makes him so good at what he does, he can see these patterns and connections. Holmes works because the world is mundane and what he does looks like magic.

For NIGHT SHIFT there is no one class that would do him justice.  While I could get away with making him a 10th level Survivor (and I feel 10 levels is right) he is missing a couple of key ingredients. So time to try another multiclass.

Here he is for Night Shift. NIGHT SHIFT is available from the Elf Lair Games website (hardcover) and from DriveThruRPG (PDF).

Sherlock Holmes
6th level Survivor / 4th level Sage (Human)
Archetype: Consulting Detective

Strength: 16 (+2) 
Dexterity: 16 (+2) S
Constitution: 14 (+1) 
Intelligence: 18 (+3) P
Wisdom: 16 (+2) S 
Charisma: 10 (0) 

HP: 35
Alignment: Light
AC: 8
Attack: +3 

Fate Points: 1d10

Check Bonus (P/S/T): +5/+3/+2
Melee bonus: +2 Ranged bonus: +2
Saves: +4 to death saves. +2 to all others.

Survivor Abilities
Stealth skills; Climbing; Danger Sense (1-4); Sneak Attack +2, x3; Read Languages 80%

Stealth Skills (8th level)

  • Open Locks: 85%
  • Bypass Traps: 80%
  • Sleight of Hand: 90%
  • Move Silently: 90%
  • Hide in Shadows: 80%
  • Perception: 90%

Sage Abilities
Survivor Skills (factored in above); Mesmerize Others; Lore; Languages (18); Spells* (to Holmes they are not "spells" merely "advanced techniques.")

First level: Command, Detect Snares & Pits
Second level: Find Traps

Athletics (Bartitsu), Sleight of Hand, Research, Science, Insight, Notice


Holmes combines a variety of class abilities and skills to create one investigator.  Would an "Investigator" class have been better?  Not really.  In this case, I feel the mix of classes and skills point to obscure training and thus a unique character.  Holmes is certainly that.

If you are interested in playing Sherlock Holmes in a game system more suited to the world he lived in then might I suggest both Victoria and Baker Street: Roleplaying in the world of Sherlock Holmes.  Both are very fine games.

Want to see more of the #CharacterCreationChallenge? Stop by Tardis Captain's Blog and the #CharacterCreationChallenge on Twitter for more! 

Character Creation Challenge

1 comment:

The Grey Elf said...

I would make Holmes a CLEAR Veteran. The Veteran's Tracking ability is 100% Holmes' ability to solve mysteries and conduct investigations. I think this one's a bit of a misfire. I would've gone Veteran/Survivor.