Properly, the Profession applies to anyone who sees to livestock in open pasturage or graze, and who herds livestock for a living. Our example character, below, is a gaucho, a South American cowboy who may deal with cattle or might handle llamas instead. While the name of the Profession is decidedly gendered, the Profession itself is not; cowboys will generally accept anyone who can handle the hard work and rough living.

By the time the Cowboy has reached Journeyman, they’ve acquired the Skills they need for day to day effort – Equestrian, Firearms, Wilderness Survival, and the like. Warden brings them some of the fancier Skills that they’ll need if they’re going to lead a cattle drive or llama roundup, and bring the herd to market. While Incite Stampede is often thought of as a way of driving a lot of animals through an enemy, it can also be used to get the herd moving in the right direction and send them straight into a corral or other enclosure. Trick Shot can put a round through someone’s hat, or pick a stone off the ground right in front of someone’s mount, or halt a stampede by clipping the tip off the horn of the lead bull. Haggle and Gambling have obvious uses for when the herd arrives at their destination. Physician, Poison Resistance, and Resist Pain help get the Cowboy themselves to the end of the trail.

The Warden ability, Double Tie, adds to the fancy ropin’ the Cowboy can already do. As with our gaucho, it doesn’t require a lasso specifically – bolas will do just as well for entangling an enemy, or bringing down a fleeing animal so that it can be returned to the herd, branded, or otherwise dealt with. A little extra Strain and the Cowboy is quite certain the target isn’t going to wiggle free at an inopportune moment.

The Master Tier Skills add the usual complement of focus and Durability buffs (to the mount as well as the Cowboy). In addition, Snap Shot allows a fast-draw maneuver, while Multi-Shot can be thrown in to make the Cowboy hell on wheels in a gunfight. Fizzing Horsemanship makes the Cowboy truly the master at riding, with the additional option of rolling over successes to Step Bonuses for the mount’s Tests. Some Cowboys will roll their eyes at the name of the ability, though, deriving as it does from the language of the dime Western, written by city folks, rather than the slang used out on the range.

Skills and Abilities

  • Warden
    • Core Skills
      • Incite Stampede, Leadership, Poison Resistance, Trick Shot, Wheeling Defense
    • Optional Skills
      • Critical Hit, Haggle, Gambling, Physician, Resist Pain
    • Abilities
      • The character gains +1 to their Social Defense.
      • The character gains +1 to their Physical Defense.
      • The character gains +1 Recovery Test per day.
      • Double Tie: The Cowboy may spend 2 Strain to secure any lasso, rope, or other entanglement. The Cowboy makes a DEX Test, which may include Karma, and adds the result of the Test to the previous Entangle Target Number.
  • Master
    • Core Skills
      • Anticipate Blow, Multi-Shot, Relentless Recovery, Second Chance, Snap Shot
    • Optional Skills
      • Animal Companion Durability, Diplomacy, Lion Spirit, Perfect Focus, Unflinching Fortitude
    • Abilities
      • The character gains +2 to their Mystic Defense.
      • The character’s Max Karma increases by 15.
      • Fizzing Horsemanship: The Cowboy can spend up to their Wound Threshold in Strain, and buy +1 Step to an Equestrian Test for every 2 points of Strain. Successes from the Equestrian Test may be exchanged, 1 success per Step, for a Step bonus to an immediately subsequent Test made by the mount.