Monday, 8 November 2021

Hopefishers (primordial background/class)

The fish have long since left, but for some sitting down and twiddling their thumbs just isn't an option. Some such go out and die in some grand, but ultimately meaningless effort, the rest of them join the hopefishery. Day after day these folks go out onto the lake to cast out their nets hoping they'll pull up something, anything at all. 


Purpose: Idleness is not an option, but our expertise is currently wasted. We long to be of use once more.

Equilibrium: Our boundless greed has cost us everything. Once the fish return, we must ensure to give in equal amount to what we take. 


Sunken Treasure
Pick one that you caught on one of your trips. The rest is owned by other hopefishers:

  • Mortal Compas: Rusty, cracked compas. Points towards the nearest person in immediate mortal danger and otherwise to nothing in particular. 
  • Bedtime Bell: Imaculate, brass bell. When rung makes everyone who hears it fall asleep. 
  • Moon Mirror: Silver mirror, shows the current fase of the moon. On full moon eyes open and you can ask it one question. It will answer truthfully, but only knows what the moon does. 
  • Seer's Skull: Three-eyed, blue skull. While you touch it you lose your sight, and see through the eyes of the skull. Afterwards you get a headache, he duration and intensity of which depends on how long and often you use the skull.

Laws of the Lake
The Lord of the Lake has its own rules one must abide by if they want to continue working in its domain.

  • Irresistable Reflection: Those who look at their own reflection when the wind is still will feel compelled to throw themselves into the lake and find themselves unable to swim.
  • Hungry Fae: If you do not wait an hour after eating before swimming, fair folk, attracted to the smell of food, will drag you down into a watery grave.
  • Divine Cloak: When engulfed by fog make sure to compliment it. Failing to do so results in wreckage. Do not overdo it: when the Lord of the Lake falls in love with you he steals you away to his glass palace beneath the lake. .
  • Unlucky No. 5: Avoid the number 5 at all cost while on the lake and especially don't enter the lake with exactly 5 people at the same time.

Rope Tricks
At times litteral lifelines, knowing how to work rope is taught to all who spend their lives hopefishing.

  • Trapping Net: You can tie a net in such a way that it fastens itself the more something struggles to get out. It takes a while to learn but once you get the trick it is quite easy to do.
  • Hair Rope: The best rope is made from the hair of fair folk. It is nearly weightless and stronger than steel. Adding even a single strand will make a rope far more durable. 
  • Tarring: Covering rope in tar will make it water resistant, making it far less heavy when these ropes get wet. It also makes them highly flamable.
  • Captain's Knot: Often used to tie ships to the docks. So complex and strong it is impossible to loosen if you don't know the trick. Some trap people who carelessly attempt to loosen it.

Alternative uses of native Fish
Despite being long gone, the secrets of fish are still passed down within your trade:

  • Slacker Eels: Incredibly fatty. Boil them to get an oil that will burn without smell or smoke for hours on end. Taste great in jelly.
  • Spirited Graylings: Can't seem to stay put. Put them in strong liquor for a year and you'll get a brew that will put anyone back on their feet, dead or alive. Marvelous when grilled. 
  • Armored Trout: Near impenetrable scales. Hard to skin, but worth the time as shirts made of armored trout last generations and protect from all cuts and stabs. Best eaten in stew. 
  • Barbed Burbot: Incredibly venomous. Milked from the barbes, a few drops of this venom can kill even a bear. Supposedly divine tasting, but those who tried didn't survive to relay it.


  1. I love it, especially the rope tricks, but isn't the brass bell OP? Also can't think of a way to use the mortal compass, to detect traps and ambushes maybe?

    I wonder what correlation does food have with the fey, good food for thought

    1. Brass bell is probably a bit strong, but as their is no exception for the person ringing it and ringing a bell while plugging your ears is rather hard I think it isn't too problematic.
      As with all things tRPG you can always alter this to better fit your table!

    2. As for the compas, I think it depends on how harsh you judge the word immediate. I would allow it to use players to know that immediate, deadly danger is near, making it useful for traps and ambusesh, but also trying to eat or drink stuff that might kill you or find a (relatively) safe passage in a very dangerous environment.

  2. This is awesome, great as starting or found town, with very cool magic items. But why no fish? The place would work with fish and you could have all the cool fish at the BX monster guide.

    Brass bells should break on use, and there should be a handful of them. They might come from a sunken ship at the bottom of the sea, and sometimes appear inside fish who have eaten them.

    1. The lack of fish is setting specific (this is part of a larger project). They could probably work just as well in a fishing town which does have fish.

      If the bell seems to strong for how you would rule its effect, making it single use is probably a good compromise. I would personally just be really strict about the fact that EVERYONE who hears it falls asleep, meaning you would need to be a bit more creative to prevent falling asleep yourself. Though I agree it is definitely on the stronger side.

  3. And they shall be called fishers of men


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