In yesterday’s Explosive Runes I linked to a Castle Dragonscar post which included some typewritten-style character sheets. There is a certain old-school flair to these, reminiscent of Judges Guild stuff and probably a majority of the home-brewed material from the period that advanced beyond the handwritten stage.
They also reminded me of what is probably the first “product”-type piece of material that I ever created, my own typewritten NPC Record sheet. Here is a sample of one:
This was (obviously) a bare-bones sheet which I whipped up on a typewriter at my dad’s office. It was one of those new-fangled electronic types with a wheel instead of those electric ones with the standard typebars. I think it took at least two or three tries to get my sheet this good (“good” being a relative term here), but once I got it I ran off lots of copies on the little photocopier in the office.
I used the Personae of Non-Player Characters tables in the AD&D Dungeon Masters Guide for these NPCs, which led to some rather odd results. I don’t ever recall actually using the altruistic, helpful, and honorable yet vengeful, avaricioius, amoral and cravenly coward Daltrithon, but the scan of this sheet (which probably dates to early 1983) reveals some erased numbers below the hit point total which are clearly from tracking damage. (It appears that he fell as low as six points remaining at one point, but he doesn’t appear to have ever tried his wand of magic missiles.)
It should be noted that I usually didn’t place a lot of weight on the personality trait results, and, in fact, didn’t even know what some of the terms meant at the time.
It’s also a bit curious as to how a character with a wisdom of 18 and a dexterity of 6 ended up as a ranger to begin with. I wonder if I determined class first and then rolled up abilities. The DMG includes adjustments to ability scores based on class for in the NPC table (i.e., a ranger gets strength +2, constitution +1, and must have a minimum 12 wisdom) so that might explain it. And, as I’ve said many times here and elsewhere, it can be fun and interesting to fashion a reason for seemingly-unreasonable random results.
I used these sheets extensively for about a year or so, but I eventually moved on to index cards and tabular sheets for tracking NPCs. Only a few of them survive.