And, while no one would call him such, Prichard might be most accurately represented as a ranger.
|Aragorn? Never heard of her.|
Rangers Can Put Down Roots, You Know
When we think of rangers, we tend to think of the iconic characters from Lord of The Rings. The rangers in Tolkien's work were more of an irregular military unit, specializing in guerrilla warfare and unusual tactics, using stealth and sudden strikes to overcome superior foes. However, too often we confuse the profession of ranger (a guerrilla fighter at home in the wilderness) with the class of ranger (which is just a pack of abilities, proficiencies, and skills). And that kind of confusion can often mean we ignore fun concepts... like the farmer ranger.
Rangers' abilities are meant to allow them to function in nature with minimal problems. They're survivalists with the ability to adapt to any climate, and whose knowledge allows them to track prey, and identify not just what a plant is, but what may have harmed it recently. Rangers have a special bond with a certain kind of land, or they have a trusty animal companion who goes everywhere with them. They're also gifted at fighting, and hunting, certain types of creatures. Skills and features which would be completely at home tending crops in goblin country, or riding the range in disputed orc lands.
There's a quote from a fantasy novel I once read that I'm going to paraphrase. "Farmers? That's the best insult you have? I don't know about you, soldier, but I want farmers in my army. They work from sun-up to sun-down, they know what to eat and what to keep out of their mouths, and they've raised cute little animals since they were babes, and looked into their eyes when they gutted them for the winter meals. Farmers know how to handle a blade, and when it comes time to eat or be eaten, they do what it takes to survive."
While the lands may change, and the crops you can grow change with them, people will always need food. And while these homegrown rangers might have sheepdogs in the forests, hunting hawks on the plains, or great horned goats in the mountains, their ability to read the land, and to always find a way to get the job done, never wavers.
Even better, a lot of them can cook!
That's all for this installment of Unusual Character Concepts. Hopefully it got the juices flowing in your creative centers. For more gaming articles by yours truly, check out my Gamers archive. I'm growing it a little every month, and you never know what I'll add next! If you want to stay on top of all my latest releases, then follow me on Facebook, Tumblr, and Twitter. Lastly, if you want to support Improved Initiative, head over to The Literary Mercenary's Patreon page to toss a little love in my cup. For at least $1 a month, I'll even send you some free gaming swag as a thank you.