A man dressed in brown runs through a deep wood.
He is moving at an incredible speed yet he does not make even the
slightest noise. In his hand is a bow,masterfully carved that very
morning. At his side is his faithful companion, a wolf. The man
stops. He cocks his head to the side and listens. Where
normal ears hear only the wind, he hears so much more. With an
agile leap that would put a deer to shame, he is behind the
trunk of a large yew tree. For a moment the only thing to be heard
is a soft breeze rustling the leaves on the ground, causing the
saplings to sway. Then a soft grunting is heard. The man raises
his bow to his cheek,his muscles tighten as he draws the string. He
relaxes his body and lets out his breath. He could sense his prey
near by. After a short period he lets loose his arrow. It sprints
through a bush and strikes it's target. At that moment the man's
wolf bounds over the bushes and silently finishes off the prey.
The man walks over to his victim. "Vile orcs" he thinks as he
looks down at the sprawling figure. He bends down to pet his
wolf. Then he stands up with a start. More grunting. Then just as
stealthily as he came, the man was gone.
Know now that a ranger is one of the
hardest characters you will ever build. Rangers are people who
can survive on their own- they are self sufficient. With so many
skills to be used, it will be hard to make your ranger. But once
you have gotten past the building stage, you will find that your
ranger is your most rewarding character.
Although you will probably end up
changing your mind about a few things, it is best to try and plan
what skills you will be using. This is what makes being a ranger
so hard. This is why I am writing this essay. Because I went
through months(yes months) of frustration before finally
settling on a template that I thought would make a good ranger
and still allow me to do certain other things. There are many
skills that can be considered "ranger skills". You have to figure
how to balance these skills,with the skills needed for survival.
When most people think of a ranger they think of
someone proficient with a bow and arrow. If you wish to best
present the "ranger image",I would go with archery. But you
also use fencing as well. As rangers are hunters,many carry
Tactics is a must. This is necessary for all combat
skills. That is to say if you want to be effective in your skill.
Anatomy is also a must.Especially if you are using
archery. It also boosts your healing power considerably.
This is when it gets hard. You probably won't
be able to use all of these so pick what you think will best suit
your playing style.
Camping is good for a few reasons. If you plan on
staying in the woods almost all the time,never staying in one
place too long,camping will allow you to log out without fear of
being attacked. It is also useful if you have cooking as a skill.
Tracking is a fun skill indeed. At first glance it may seem
useless,but I have found that it is actually quite useful. If you
happen to be following someone with a better connection than
you,this will ensure you do not lose them. It is also useful for
keeping track of monsters while in dungeons and such. And
if ever you are pick-pocketed, just start tracking the thief,
even if he hides you will still be able to follow the blinking
arrow to him.Plus at 21.1 skill you are essentially GM. After
21.1 there is no difference in how well tracking works.
Animal Taming/Lore. Rangers of legend have always
been able to find a bond with nature. Having these two skills
mean you will never be alone in the woods. Pets can also be
used to fight. But rangers aren't interested in things like
gold, so don't camp a spawn. Then you are just a tamer with
Hiding/Stealth. Rangers have the ability to move from
place to place without being seen or heard. These skills come
in handy when you are hunting in your favorite dungeon.
Bowcrafting/Fletching. A hard skill to GM, but worth it in
the long run. Allows you to be as self-sufficient as possible,
making your own bows and arrows.
Veterinary makes sure your pets stay alive and happy.
These are the ones that give you an easier time
Healing. You must have either this or magery to heal.
Potions are good but if you are using a two handed weapon
like a bow you must first disarm to drink it. And since you
will probably already have anatomy,this seems like a logical
Magery. While making my character this skill gave me
the most trouble. If I had high magery I could hide myself and
heal myself,thus getting more skill for my skills. But how many
rangers have you heard of that were proficient mages? Unless
you are heavy into role-playing(or just don't like people) it is
good to have at least a little skill for recalling. And if you chose
to use taming, you will need to be able to gate to take your pets
Magic Resist. While I know of a few people who do
enjoy some success in fighting monsters without resist, I would
advise you to get at least 90-GM of this skill. This goes double
and triple if you think you may PvP at all.
Lumberjacking. You have to get the wood for
bowcrafting somehow right? Or you could just buy the wood.
But that becomes expensive.
Alchemy. Good for the truly self-sufficient ranger.
Hopefully you have some idea of what skills you want
to use. As there are so many combinations, it is really up to
you how to start. This is what I would suggest for a nice,
Most everyone will tell you to start with max STR. Stats
are really easy to raise if you know how to. In my experience,
it is easier to get the desired stats if they are closer in range to
each other from the start.
Now, for starting skills it really isn't that hard to
decide. The tried and true method is to get 50 of your combat
skill (for ranger probably either archery or fencing) and 50
tactics. After that, pick a skill that will give you a newbie
item that you will use. I would suggest Tailoring for scissors
or Magery for the book and reagents.
I would suggest starting out in either Skara Brae,
Britain, or Moonglow. Make your rounds to the shopkeepers
to "train" your skills. Of course if you are doing this strictly
RP, you might want to skip this. You will need healing and
anatomy first and foremost. Go to the healers and get them
raised. Then go over to the nearest bowyer and get
bowcrafting raised. After that go to a carpenter to get your
lumberjacking raised. The last thing is to buy a cheap
hatchet to chop wood with. You have just made a cost
effective start.For supplies, go to Moonglow. There you can
pick cotton for bandies, chop wood for arrows, and there are
plenty of birds to provide feathers and food. For armor just
look around the bank for leftovers. You will be playing either
archery or possibly fencing which are both DEX based. So
armor can be a hindrance in some respects.
My first character I did not make any attempt at
skill gaining. I let it happen naturally. This took many
months to GM even a few of my desired skills. While doing
things this way will give you better appreciation for your
character, it will frustrate you at times. I will outline a few
details to help you out. Some skills I will simply refer you to
another essay to get help from. This is shaping up to be a
long one so I will just go over "common ranger skills".
First thing to do is raise your stats to their desired
levels. This can be very tricky if you do not yet know what
skills you want to use. The best way to raise stats is the
see-saw method. This method requires you have all 700 skill
points used. So go to Britain Graveyard or the Red NPC
fort that is just beyond the mountain pass by Britain for
some gold. You must buy all your skills up with the
exception of Arms Lore, Musicianship, and Spirit Speak.
These will be your "stats skills". Lock all your skills except
one which will be pointing down(to lose skill points). Then
have one of the three skills mentioned pointed up(to gain
Arms Lore for STR.
Spirit Speak for INT.
Musicianship for DEX.
Use a combination of these skills(or all 3) to
gain the desired stat. Raise one skill manually(don't buy it)
up to 10 points real skill. Then set that skill arrow down.
Then set one of the other skills to "up". Use that skill until all
the points from the previous skill are gone. Then repeat the
process with another of the three skills. Keep doing this
and you will notice your stats going up pretty quick. You
don't have to be in power hour either. (Note: for
Musicianship a musical instrument is required.) Just
remember to have all skills locked except for the three you
Unfortunately raising skills are a bit harder. Here
is what you can do for the common ranger skills.
Archery - Shoot anything and everything up to 75 real skill.
After that, try shooting ogre lords and bone
knights. The spawn in the "Bone Knight Room(or The
Wall)" has recently been increased so be careful
and bring lots of bandies. Tactics will go up with
your archery so no worries there.
Camping - Use the 8x8 method. Get a boat. Get a lot of
kindling. Take boat into ocean during your
power hour. Set sail going East to West. Use
camping. When you gain in skill, stop the boat
and keep doing it from that spot. Then move
8 tiles forward and do it again. Then repeat.
If you stop gaining you have to find a new spot.
Tracking - Don't even waste a powerhour with this one.
Just keep using the skill up to 21.1 real skill. At
that point you will be able to track just as well as
a GM tracker.
Animal Taming - Tame everything you can up to about 60
real skill. At this point tame bulls and grizzlies to
GM. It's not as simple as it sounds though.
Animal Lore - Get your boat out again. Tame a few polar
bears and bring them onto your boat. Start
sailing in one steady direction that will not take
you close to shore. Release one bear and have the
other attack it. Heal both of the bears. Once you
gain,stop the boat. Keep healing the bears until
you haven't gained for awhile. Then move on and
try and find another spot.
Veterinary - See above. This will also gain you veterinary.
Bowcrafting/Fletching- This is a hard skill to raise. It will take
you many hours of practice. Check the
Bowcrafting/Fletching Essay for a table of what to
make and when for the best gains.
As I have said before, there are many skills that can be
considered ranger skills. If I were to list them all here with a
complete description of how to gain skill, there would be almost
no point in having any of the other Professions Essays. The few
I provided are just among the most popular skills used by
(Note: While I have hunted specific creatures for skill gain
in archery and tactics, I have never used the 8x8 method
or any other skill gain method that requires you to
manipulate the skill gain system. This is perfectly legal
and I am assuming it works as so many people do it. But
I cannot say first hand that it will work. If nothing else, it
won't get you worse gains right?)
Playing Your Ranger
So you have your desired skills and you know you
are ready to claim yourself to be a man(or woman) of the
wilderness. Great. You will find that there is not one thing
you cannot do with your ranger. All hunting spots are open
to you. You can now roam the land in search of adventure and
excitement. Do not concentrate on petty things such as gold, but
it doesn't hurt to take some from the fallen bodies of your foes.
Or maybe you just want to play a peaceful ranger, coexisting
in harmony with all of nature. Perhaps instead you wish to
travel a darker path, and become an evil "Shadow Ranger".
The choice is yours to make. I can help you decide what skills
you would like to use, but I cannot determine your fate.
I hope someone will read this and find it useful. It may not
seem like much, but if I had this guide when I was making my
first ranger, it would have saved me much time and sanity.
What's that? You still can't think of a good skill template
of your own?! You had the whole fifteen minutes it took you to
read this essay! Ok ok, below are some templates to help you
| Shadow Ranger:
GM- Archery(or Fencing)
GM- Magic Resist
|Pros: Good fighter. When action gets too thick, can always sneak away.
|Cons: No magic for recall or any other spell. Will have to bum gates from others-or run.
|Classic Ranger 1:
GM- Magic Resist
38- Animal Lore
|Pros: Good fighter. Can recall to get around. Can track as well as a GM Tracker and can safely log out in wild. Can tame own mounts.
| Cons: Pretty basic. Skills are spread a little thin. Not capable of any high level spells. Use of scrolls is required for recalling.
| Classic Ranger 2
GM- Magic Resist
| Pros: Another good fighter. Enough magery to recall (with scroll). Enough lumberjacking to provide wood for bows and arrows that you will craft yourself.
|Cons: Won't be able to do other ranger abilities.
GM- Archery(or Fencing)
GM- Animal Taming
GM- Animal Lore
|Pros: Can tame anything can hold own when alone. Veterinary can be substituted for GM Magery for Healing purposes. This also can free up Healing and allow for another GM skill. Can gate with scroll.
| Cons: Will not be able to do many other ranger type skills like Camping. Will fail a lot with minimum magery for gate.
| Ranger Warrior
GM- Magic Resist
| Pros: Pair this up with a fast connection, and you have a lean, mean killing machine. Enough magery to do most spells. Tracking adds a little flavor and fun to the hunt.
|Cons: Take away Tracking and you don't have much of a ranger. Having 78 magery will almost make you want to go to GM.
| Spiritual Ranger
78- Magic Resist
|Pros: Can Heal anything in a small amount of time. Mainly used for role playing.
|Cons: Unless you are role playing you will find that having both Healing and Magery is a waste of skill.
These were just some examples. There are many
skills that can be used. Being a good ranger is not knowing
what you are, it's knowing what you are not. You are not
like everyone else. You feel comfortable both alone and in
groups. While others may flock to cities you are roaming
the deepest woods of the lands. I hope I may have helped
you to see a path with this essay.
- Fairfax of Chesapeake