Continuing on Tim Brannon’s 31 Day Character Creation Challenge, and continuing the downslide from the Burning Wheel fiasco on January 1st, I’ve come to Troika.

Troika Cover

Part of me really wants to love Troika, but part of me is deeply confused by it. I love the highly evocative but rules-light character generation and the trippy, bizarre artwork, but I have trouble wrapping my brain around the acid-fantasy implied setting. I say implied setting, because while there’s stuff in the character creation rules and the sample adventure that imply that the setting is some sort of fantasy world, there’s also the implication of aliens from the stars, bizarre sentiences well beyond the typical human/elf/dwarf/demi-human range, and distinctly modern (or even futuristic) technology.

I picked this one up from a bundle on a few months ago, and I’ve been toying around with picking up the print version, but I haven’t quite gotten around to it. This is a big darling of the Indie scene these days, and I even went so far as to pick up a zine or two which seems to be set in a completely custom city that blends Planescape/Spelljammer and Ravenloft, even further confusing me as to the recommended setting. I might just try running this at the local con this year, assuming cons are happening in 2021.

Regardless, the character generation is dead simple. I don’t expect this to take more than 15 minutes:

  1. Roll 1d3 + 3 to represent your skill: 4
  2. Roll 2d6 + 12 to determine stamina: 17
  3. Roll 1d6 + 6 to determine luck: 9
  4. Record Baseline Posessions: 9 SP, a Knife, A Lanter & Oil, A Rucksack, 6 Provisions
  5. Roll d66 on the background table, and record posessions and skills

The Dwarf

Troika Sourcebook

I rolled 22: Dwarf, which is an interestingly non-biological take on dwarves: Genderless, Family-less constructs that wander around the “million spheres” searching for places to make fantastic works of art. The masterwork of any dwarf’s career is to make another dwarf, and if it is good enough, the gods will grant it life.

Posessions: Masonry Hammer, Roll of Artist Supplies Advanced Skills:

  • 3 Awareness
  • 2 Sculpting
  • 2 Painting
  • 2 Metalworking
  • 2 Construction
  • 2 Strength
  • 2 Fist Fighting
  • 2 Wrestling
  • 1 Hammer Fighting

Dwarves can eat rare minerals instead of food Dwarves are immune to any sexual temptation, since they are genderless and reproduce asexually.

Yep, that was it, about 10 minutes. The game seems to have some very high lethality to it as well, so it’s probaby good to have nearly disposable characters. So is born Karalack the Dwarf, destined to be crushed under a Juggernaut on some distant Sphere…