1879: Professions High Tiers: The Military Officer

Our officer has risen to major by Warden, and is moving into the senior ranks. Here, the officer learns to handle forces by the regiment, and generally to think in larger terms. It is said that lieutenants study tactics, majors study strategy, and generals study logistics. Certainly, Leadership must give way to Command, the ability to lead much larger groups. Tactics likewise gives way to Strategy, the ability to direct forces in battle above the individual level. The officer also gains additional combat abilities of their own, as the best way to lead is by example. Social development is not neglected at Warden, although it takes second place, as the officer learns to hold their own in Conversation. This will be crucial later on as politics overtakes military acumen as the means to career advancement. The officer also learns to keep an eye out for their forces, and make sure that they always have a Line of Retreat, for those times when the tide of battle turns. No battle plan ever survives contact with the enemy, and the officer must always have a contingency in their hip pocket, or be able to make one up on the fly.

At Master, the officer has won promotion to the general staff. They will only take the field in the direst of situations, but when they do, their presence can turn the tide for their forces. Rising above the din, their Song of Battle inspires the troops, and leads them to redouble their efforts. What’s more, by now they’ve read the books their foes have written, and know the stratagems likely to be employed. This does work against them, if the enemy commander has likewise learned that Your Tactics Are As Well Known As You. It’s all just one more piece of the puzzle, one more known item, and it all goes into the master plan for the war.

Skills and Abilities

  • Warden
    • Core Skills
      • Command, Oratory, Rally, (Second Attack / Shot), Strategy
    • Optional Skills
      • Conversation, Escape Plan, Lion Spirit, Resist Pain, (Sure Mount / Maneuver)
    • Abilities
      • The character gains +1 to their Physical Defense.
      • The character gains +1 to their Social Defense.
      • The character gains +1 Recovery Test per day.
      • Line of Retreat: By spending a Wound’s worth of Strain, the Military Officer may use Escape Plan during battle to find the optimal route for withdrawing their troops. The analysis takes 3 combat rounds as a Sustained Action instead of 30 minutes. The Escape Plan Test is made against the Tactics total Step of the opposing commander. On one success, the withdrawing Military Officer takes 10% casualties, on two successes, 5% casualties, and on three or more successes no casualties at all. On a Rule of One result, the line of withdrawal turns out to be an ambush, and the Military Officer takes 25% casualties before they may attempt to Rally and counterattack.
  • Master
    • Core Skills
      • Bardic Voice, Concentrated Assault, (Multi-Charge / Shot / Strike), Second Chance, Soul Aegis
    • Optional Skills
      • Defense, Perfect Focus, Relentless Recovery, Song of Battle, Unflinching Fortitude
    • Abilities
      • The character gains +2 to their Physical Defense.
      • The character’s Max Karma increases by 15.
      • Your Tactics Are As Well Known As You: The Military Officer has studied their opponent thoroughly, and knows the enemy’s past battles and favourite stratagems. The Military Officer may add the opposing commander’s Reputation as a Step Bonus to Command, Concentrated Assault, Danger Sense, Inspire Others, Strategy, or Tactics Tests during battle against that opponent. If the enemy leadership changes, the Military Officer must pay 5 Strain to adjust their plans to the new opponent, or lose the Reputation bonus for the remainder of the battle. Of course, the opposing officer may be able to use the same ability.