View Full Version : Gawain and the Green knight

2009-10-23, 12:31 PM
As a school project I have to turn in character sheets for Gawain and the Green knight. Thought I'd post the process. Jump in if you have suggestions, but since I'm doing this all in this afternoon I doubt anybody will notice this till I'm done. Hope no one minds the double/triple/quad/quin etc. posts...

2009-10-23, 12:32 PM
You must have an awesome teacher...

2009-10-23, 12:37 PM
Synopsis here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sir_Gawain_and_the_Green_Knight

Class and Level:

For Gawain, I plan on him being upper-middle-level, somewhere around 8, maybe up to 11. I'll start him as a Knight from PHBll, but throw in a few levels of fighter maybe. I considered Paladin, but Detect Evil didn't really seem to fit.

I'm not sure about the Green Knight. He'll definitely have some fighter levels and a few in aristocrat, and maybe a few in knight, but other than that I'm gonna have to give him a template to give him those awesome abilities. Maybe something were-like, but not based off an animal.

EDIT-- Oohh, I was just thinking about Gringolet, and maybe and few levels paladin are in order to get the awesome mount.

2009-10-23, 12:37 PM
I think to help with that, we would have to be familiar with all the characters details.

But I'd just start with making them fighters. Depending on the power level of the setting, I'd put them on 8th or 12th level. To make things interesting, I'd put them only one level apart, unless the story has one of them completely beat up and whipe the floor with the other.

Don't optimize ability scores, except the story tells, that one of them has a dump stat. :smallbiggrin:
Regarding skills, I'd put ranks in Diplomacy and Ride, as they are knights. :smallwink: I think the story was about making right choices when to fight and when not (only know it very vaguely. Namely that it's about Sir Gawain who meets a Green Knight. And a princes is mentioned, I think), so I'd give one of them a high wisdome score and both some ranks in Sense Motive.

Most people won't be able to read the stats anyway, and those who do are not likely to be optimizers. So don't put too much effort into making them high power level game worthy tanks. :smallbiggrin:

2009-10-23, 12:41 PM
You must have an awesome teacher...
Quoted for Truth... or he is a precocious 12 year old (or whatever), rather than a high-schooler...

2009-10-23, 12:43 PM
Nope, wasn't planning on any optimization. These guys aren't going into a game, there just project I have to do. I can't decide whether to do point buy or just give them the stats I think are appropriate.

2009-10-23, 12:47 PM
You must have an awesome teacher...

LOL my dad! I'm homeschooled ;) Before this I had to make Beowulf's Facebook page!

2009-10-23, 12:56 PM
I was homeschooled myself, it rocks... could we get a link to that Beowulf page? My mom is a public school teacher now, and might have a use for it.

Also, for those mentioning relative levels, I don't think the two ever really "fought" per se... The Green Knight stood their while Gwain took his shot at him, then left saying "See you in a year!"... of course, given the NATURE of the blow in question, I think Gwain's best move if they ever really dueled would be to start of praying for divine intervention...

Don't forget to give the Green Knight a Belt of Strength of at least +4 quality... but to have it only reach that around noon (if I am not mixing up my legends)... maybe even +8 or something Epic like that, but only for about 30 minutes per day, with lesser or even no bonus at all at other times of day.

2009-10-23, 01:03 PM
Okay, so 5 levels of knight for Gawain. I think I'll drop any racial attributes since it's an entirely human world (actually I guess there were some fey and stuff, but not enough to make a difference). Abilities for him are...
Str 14
Dex 10
Con 15
Int 10
Wis 17
Cha 15

Constitution seems like a common theme in epics, as the hero is always wandering for years in a desert or surviving a brutal snowstorm or swimming across the ocean. Strength just made sense for one of Arthur's best knights. Wisdom is the main theme of the book and Charisma is brought up a few times.

Also, I'm gonna give him a Royal Blood special ability, like Elven Blood.

Definitely no levels of Paladin. I think Mounted Combat bonus feat from Knight covers that well enough. Anyone know of any feats pertaining to Heavy Armor? Besides proficiency obviously.

2009-10-23, 01:07 PM
Don't forget to give the Green Knight a Belt of Strength of at least +4 quality... but to have it only reach that around noon (if I am not mixing up my legends)... maybe even +8 or something Epic like that, but only for about 30 minutes per day, with lesser or even no bonus at all at other times of day.

I do remember something distinctly like that in one of Arthur's tales and was waiting for it when I read this, but it never came up. I think that was another evil knight. This guy is mentioned as having the strength of several men though.

I'll post the FB page soon, the online one I could get to now is annoyingly low-res, so I'll dig up the original on the desktop when my dad is off for a moment.

2009-10-23, 01:41 PM
In the story, as I recall, Gawain was a newbie knight; the very youngest of all of Arthur's men. (Which was how he got to be the one to accept the Green Knight's challenge - suspecting a trap, he offered himself in place of anyone more valuable, e.g. the king). So if anything, level 5 would be on the high side.

The Green Knight, on the other hand... let's see. He had an alter self on him, he clearly had lots of ranks in bluff and intimidate, and he had a belt of contingent resurrection. Other than that, he was just a plain old big strong chap, and considerably smarter and more worldly wise than young Gawain. However, all his magical abilities were attributed to this being a game by Morgan le Fay, so we can forget WBL.

On the whole, I'd be tempted to make Gawain a Knight in the level 1-3 range, and the Green Knight a level 5-10 Aristocrat with some nice kit, high Str, Wis, and Chr, full ranks in Bluff and Intimidate, and the Persuasive feat besides.

2009-10-23, 01:47 PM
Hmm... Knight does not have Diplomacy as class. I'll have to give him a focus for that and max out cross-class. Also, he'll be 10th level knight. Endurance and Self-sufficient are the first feats, and knowledge (nobility and royalty) and ride are gonna split the rest of the skill points. A 10th level knight gets (2x4)+18= skill points. The max is 13 ranks in class, 6 1/2 in cross-class.
Ride 6
knowledge (nobility and royalty) 6
diplomacy 13 (6 ranks, 2 cha, 3 focus, 2 synergy from knowledge)

That seems about right to me. He spends a lot of the book sparring words with Hautdesert's wife, hence the high diplomacy. The other two just make sense for his role.

2009-10-23, 02:05 PM
Couldn't get the high-res one. Sorry.

http://photos-h.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc1/hs232.snc1/7932_1224986869350_1369368777_30632046_866126_n.jp g

2009-10-23, 03:03 PM
Done! Here they are:


LG Knight 10
HP 95
AC 20 (+8 full plate, +2 light steel shield)
Touch 10, Flat-footed 18
Init +0

Str 14
Dex 10
Con 16
Int 10
Wis 16
Cha 15

Fort +3 (+3 base, +3 con)
Reflex +3 (+3 base)
Will +12 (+7 base, +3 wis, +2 iron will)

Base attack: +10/+5
Grapple: +12 (+10 base, +2 str)
Attack: Mwk Longsword +13 (1d8+2), crit 19-20

Diplomacy +13 (+2 cha, 6 ranks, +3 focus, +2 synergy)
Knowledge (nobility and royalty) +6 (6 ranks)
Ride +6 (6 ranks)

Skill focus (diplomacy)
Iron will
Spirited charge
Improved disarm (traded knight ability for this)
Mounted combat

Special abilities:
Royal Blood
Fighting challenge +2 (knights challenge, test of mettle, call to battle)
Shield block +2
Armor master heavy
Vigilant defender
Shield ally
Knight's Code

Possessions: Full plate, light steel shield, Girdle of Not Bleeding to Death

Green Knight:

Large Humanoid
LN Knight 12 Aristocrat 3
HP 142
AC 12 (+2 natural)
Touch 10, Flat-footed 12
Init +0

Str 21
Dex 10
Con 18
Int 12
Wis 13
Cha 12

Fort +11 (+5 base, +4 con, +2 great fortitude)
Reflex +5 (+5 base)
Will +12 (+11 base, +1 wis)

Base attack: +14/9/4
Grapple: +13 (+14 base, +5 str, +4 size)
Attack: Greataxe +20/16/10 1d12+7 x3

Bluff +8 (7 ranks, +1 cha)
Diplomacy +11 (10 ranks, +1 cha)
Intimidate +19 (18 ranks, +1 cha)
Knowledge (nobility and royalty) +7 (6 ranks, +1 int)
Ride +4 (2 ranks, +2 animal affinity)
Sense motive +4 (3 ranks, +1 wis)
Survival +4 (3 ranks, +1 wis)

Power Attack
Great Cleave
Mounted Combat
Animal Affinity

Special abilities:
Fighting challenge +2 (knights challenge, test of mettle, call to battle, daunting challange)
Shield block +2
Armor master heavy
Vigilant defender
Shield ally
Shield Block +2
Knight's Code

2009-10-23, 03:43 PM
Wow. I can see you've put a lot of work into this, but...

Level 27? The Green Knight is awesome, but that just doesn't sit right. He shouldn't be in the "challenge the gods" stages that is Epic D&D. I'm not quite of the "Aragorn should be modelled as a level 5 character (http://www.thealexandrian.net/creations/misc/d&d-calibrating.html)" (skip down to "analyzing Aragorn") school, but I also don't think this really fits the story. Ultimately, the story's about the beginning of one particular hero's career, and his being put through his paces by an older, smarter man in the process (and some awesome-sounding, albeit incomprehensible, poetics in the original Anglo-Saxon - I particularly like the bit where the Green Knight first loses his head).

Also, I've been thinkiing about the belt... and maybe "contingent resurrection" isn't it, since he never actually dies, just walks over and puts his head back on. Maybe "belt of regeneration 1" or something like that.

2009-10-23, 03:55 PM
Epic Handbook lists a bunch of "epic names"- maybe, if the Green Knight seems on a par with the lower of these, it's justified.

Baba Yaga
Cu Chulainn
Elric of Melnibone
The Grey Mouser

2009-10-23, 09:39 PM
Whoa, that's totally wrong. It's supposed to be Aristocrat 3, not 15.

Great suggestions Paddyfool! If I hadn't already turned it in, I would do take some of that advice ;) I didn't see that before I posted the final.

I wasn't sure about Gawain's level. I've some other Knights of the Round Table tales, and I just remembered Gawain being one of the awesome ones on par with Launcelot, Percival, and such. I don't think the book I read ever mentioned he was very young when he took on the Green Knight.

Also, what evidence do you think there is for Morgana le Fey actually making him magical instead of him just already having those powers and her putting them to use? I'm really not sure on that point...

Thank's for the help, maybe I'll post a revision later!

2009-10-23, 09:57 PM
Gawain was pretty epic in the stories. He was Arthur's nephew and in the oldest stories the greatest of the knights of the round (Lancelot and the rest came later). Actually in Geoffrey of Monmouth's History of the Kings of Britain (which is sometimes said to be the oldest written form of the Arthur legends) Gawain is Arthur's 2nd in his foreign wars (Gawain's brother Mordred acting as regent) and even avenges Arthur's death in the battle in which King Arthur dies; so Gawain was one of Arthur's stronger knights and is mentioned as such in the Green Knight I believe.

2009-10-24, 06:38 PM
Looking back at a modern translation of the original text (http://www.yorku.ca/inpar/sggk_neilson.pdf), it seems I might have been misled. Gawain described himself there (in 1.16) as "the least of this company" [Arthur's knights], but it might have as easily or more easily been courtesy as fact. Somehow, the whole story made particular sense to me as a start of a heroic career before, but I suppose it doesn't have to be - a lesson can be learned at any stage. Equally, though, Gawain later being one of the greatest of the knights doesn't mean that he wasn't starting out at this stage - everybody has to start somewhere.

As for Morgan being involved, her part is mentioned in 4.19.