While I Was Away - 50 Reasons for Character Absences
It can happen¸ for one reason or another¸ that a player is absent from a game for one¸ or more¸ sessions - probably due to real life. When this occurs¸ the player's character can simply be considered to be absent as well¸ or they may be run by another player. Which can be unfortunate if the character is then killed.
Rather than simply having a character be absent¸ or run by someone else¸ to add more flavour to the game have the character doing an in-game activity that explains their absence. These activities could take anything from days to months¸ and can involve the character doing something "off screen" that has a genuine game purpose¸ or can be explained by one. Some may have actual in-game results¸ and cost in-game money to do. They are best agreed to beforehand¸ in the case of known absences¸ but can always be decided afterwards¸ for those that are unexpected.
All should be agreed to between the player and the GM before they are done¸ given that they can have game effects. This supplement provides 50 different activities¸ suited primarily for fantasy settings but they could be adapted to others¸ that absent characters could be doing¸ together with an example.
Make character absences more interesting!
Here is an example:
Characters with suitable artistic skills could be spending the time they are absent creating artwork¸ such as a sculpture or a painting¸ which could then be sold at a profit¸ at the GM's discretion. The time taken for this is variable; a major piece of artwork can easily take days¸ perhaps even weeks¸ of game time to complete¸ but more simple ones could be completed in a day. There may also be some initial expense for purchasing materials; how much will depend on what is being made¸ as a life size sculpture will require more expensive materials than a painting would. This is an activity that is only suited to characters with appropriate skills.
Example: Gerfertis has some artistic skills¸ and is going to spend three days creating a portrait of an important personage in his town. The GM rules that this will require only 5 gp of materials to do and¸ if Gerfertis makes a successful skill roll for the appropriate craft skill¸ he will be able to sell the painting for 50 gp.
One page of the supplement is the title page¸ one the front matter and one the Introduction.
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