So I generated my paper man for S&W yesterday. I'm still deciding about dropping his 12 CHA to a 10, so I can raise STR to 18 (maybe) or DEX to 14 (probably, for the option of Defensive Fighting). That's assuming my stat stand - maybe the GM will ask me to roll them in Roll20 or something, or video it, or something. In which case I need a new PC. Assuming I get to keep this guy, I have three things to work on. A name. Alignment. And Gear. Alignment, well, Lawful or Neutral. I need to delve into the book more and see what choosing one does to me. I tend towards Neutral with Lawful tendencies, although I find it pretty easy to go full-on Lawful. Full-on nice, really. I need a "What Would John Crichton Do?" bracelet. He's a pretty good model for "nice with some serious backbone."
Either way, he needs gear.
Equipment, per S&W Complete page 29, is based on 3d6 x 10 gp. I roll a 10 (and then promptly rolled a 12, which would have changed my options, but the universe and these GW dice I keep in my desk drawer were not kind). That means 100 gp.
First up is armor and weapons, because if I'm a fighter my allies have a reasonable expectation that I have something in that department.
The first rule of gaming is, don't die. Armor helps.
Getting Chain (ouch, it's painful to say "Chain" instead of "Mail") is a bit much at 75 gp. It doesn't leave me much. Ring (Uh, leather with rings on it?) is the next step down and costs 30 gp. It gives -3 or +3 AC, depending on if we're using Ascending AC or Descending AC. Leather is only 5 gp, lighter (10 lbs instead of 40 lbs), and might have the upside of people not assuming I'm a tank. A shield is 15 gp, 10 lbs, and -1/+1 AC. I'll want one of those.
Let's say Ring and Shield, for -4 AC, 50 lbs, and 45 gp. That would leave me 55 to spend and, with ST 17, my dude can carry 105 lbs without dropping below Base Movement Rate 12.
(By the way, the index in S&W lists Encumbrance as page 32, but page 32 doesn't mention Encumbrance, just Weight. Makes it hard on us using PDFs and find, eh?)
I may revise back to leather. Ring has the downside of a lot more cost and weight for not a whole lot of extra anything. But we'll see.
How about weapons?
I love swords. Swords scream "fighter" to me. Plus, if I wasn't so clumsy in real life, I'd learn to use one. (In real life, I'm a fan of sticks.) I like the versatility of a bastard sword - 20 gp for 1d8 damage, 1d8+1 with two hands if my shield gets busted somehow. I think that's worth the expense.
I like crossbows, too, but bows are much better in DnD clones. And cheaper. So, a Short Bow (15 gp) and 20 arrows (2 gp) is a good deal. So are the handaxe and spear. Spears have some nice range but are twice as heavy as axes (are they really? GURPS pegs them at the same weight, and so did my research, but whatever - I'm playing what's on the page. These aren't complaints, just running commentary.)
So this seems like a nice loadout:
Sword, Bastard (10 lbs, 20 gp)
Axe, Hand (5 lbs, 2 gp)
Spear (10 lbs, 1 gp)
Short Bow (5 lbs, 15 gp)
Arrows (20) (1 lb, 2 gp)
Dagger (2 lbs, 2 gp)
Total: 33 lbs, 42 gp
At this point, I'm almost out of money.
(By the way, after years of dealing with "3 pound swords are too unrealistically heavy!" in GURPS, it's strange to go back to 10 pound swords again.)
With 13 gp left, I need to ensure I can a) see, b) carry stuff, c) eat, and d) have some cash to buy stuff my friends need me to have.
With that in mind:
Backpack (30 lbs capacity) (5 gp, ?? lbs.) (weight isn't listed anywhere that I can see, for any of this gear)
Bedroll (0.2 gp)
Flint & Steel (1 gp)
Oil, Lamp x 5 (0.5 gp) (this doubles as Greek Fire, which is why I need some)
Sack x 1 (30 lbs capacity) (2 gp)
Torch x 3 (0.03 gp)
Waterskin (1 gp)
Rations, Trail x 2 days (1 gp)
Rations, Dried x 2 days (2 gp)
Total: 12.73 gp
This leaves me 0.27 gp left.
That might do for starting gear - I need to mull it over
Side Note - Old School Cred
I started in 1981 with Moldvay Red Box and quickly progressed to D&D, played with all the understanding and arguments and lethality that a group of elementary school kids can bring to a game.
I remember how fragile 1st level guys can be. You can even have straight 18s and max HP and still end up with a dead PC on the first turn of the game. It happens. I remember this. I know nothing I do assures my snowflake of protection.
But it's enjoyable to put some effort into the guy, and real thought into what I can do to give him the best survival edge I can. I may only run this guy once, so that means I really need to care about him even more now. So I'm not looking to ensure this guy will survive anything, only that I put the effort into my PC that will make the sessions I get to run him as fun as possible. For me and others.
Now I just need a name. And then we'll see how this guy does. I'm thinking he's a cautious veteran merc, or a city guardsman, or something of that sort. Some urge to get wandering and exploring (death in the family? Crop failure? Took a wrong turn and just kept going?) Not really ambitious externally, but sees a chance to make it big or get buried with a sword as his headstone, and is willing to risk the latter to get the former.
Sounds pretty good. Now he just needs a name.