The Book of (Scaly) Tales
After seeing how much fun Cody was having writing the peasant class for April fools, I thought I might try my hand at some not-so-serious game design, in order to address another crucial part of the world of The Witcher.
Aardvark fighting, the sport taking the fighting pits of Ebbing by storm!
Pay attention. This might just come up again in A Book of Tales!
The Rules of Aardvark Fighting
Here are the rules posted on the wall of the premier aardvark fighting pit in the city of Claremont in Ebbing. Other fighting pits may have their own rules, but these are generally agreed upon as the standard for the sport.
- Two aardvarks are placed in a 2×2 meter square marked in chalk. Initiative is rolled.
- The aardvarks fight until one is unable to continue, otherwise loses the match, or its owner forfeits.
- Any aardvark that leaves the combat square loses the match.
- An aardvark subjected to the Bleed condition automatically loses the match. Clotting powder and a referee skilled in First Aid are always present at an official fight.
- No digging in the arena. It causes a mess.
Getting your Aardvark
Now that you know the rules, you need an aardvark. They typically cost 200 crowns.
The following statblock is from a project still in development and may change before final publication.
INT 1 • REF 3 • DEX 5 • BODY 3 • SPD 5 • EMP 4 • CRA 1 • WILL 5
STUN 4 • RUN 15 • LEAP 3 • STA 20 • ENC 30 • REC 4 • HP 20
Intelligence: Feral • Senses: Night Vision, Scent Tracking
Skill Bases: Athletics +8, Awareness +10, Courage +13, Dodge/Escape +9, Endurance +13, Intimidation +8, Melee +10, Stealth +8, Wilderness Survival +15
Armor: 4 • Susceptibilities: Beast Oil
Dodge Base: +9 • Reposition Base: +8 • Block Base: +8
Claws (ATK Base: +10 • Type: B • DMG: 1d6 • Reliability: 15 • Effect: Bleed (10%) • ROF: 2)
Tail (ATK Base: +10 • Type: S • DMG: 2d6-1 • Reliability: 10 • Effect: — • ROF: 1)
- Intimidation Stance: By lifting itself on its hind legs and spending its full turn, an aardvark can make an Intimidation Check opposed by its opponent’s Courage. If the Check is successful, the opponent must spend its entire movement to flee from the aardvark on its next turn. An aardvark can only use this ability once per combat. The Intimidation Check automatically succeeds when used against an aardvark target that the aardvark has previously defeated in physical combat.
- Will to Fight: When an aardvark begins its turn with 10 HP or less, it must make a DC:20 Courage Check to continue fighting. If the aardvark fails the Check, it must spend the turn doing nothing but fleeing from its opponent. If it succeeds, it may continue the fight.
Leveling Up Your Aardvark
An aardvark that wins a match against a worthy opponent gains one IP. Keep track of the total lifetime IP earned by your aardvark. Owners of strong aardvarks must seek each other out to further hone their aardvark’s skills. Aardvark sellers might also seek out the owner of a high lifetime IP aardvark to pay for stud/breeding services.
An aardvark does not gain IP from winning a fight against another aardvark with less lifetime IP than them.
Aardvarks can only spend their IP to increase one of the five specific Skills: Athletics, Courage, Dodge/Escape, Intimidation, and Melee.
When an aardvark reaches a lifetime IP of 5, it is considered a champion and gains one of the following three permanent benefits.
- Aardvark Swagger:The aardvark can now use its Intimidation Stance twice per fight.
- Skilled Combatant:The aardvark’s claws gain +1 to damage, and its tail gains +2 to damage.
- Thick Skin:The aardvark gains a permanent +1 to Armor and is now immune to bleeding.
That’s all for today. Remember, keep your sword (and your aardvark’s claws) sharp!
Good news! My group have some “dog pit” fighting experience. But “dog pit” with aardvarks will be more interesting competition =)