Saturday, January 2, 2016

DCC Class: The Jack


"On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero."
-Fight Club



N.B. - I hack DCC because I love DCC. I love DCC because I hack DCC.

I love the core of the DCC thief class. The luck die is as revolutionary a mechanic as mighty deeds and variable spells. However, I find a great deal of the other working parts of the class restrictive, boring, or frustrating.

Also, I hate tying class mechanics to character alignment.

Also, I have this nagging desire to turn DCC into a classless/uniclass/multiclass abomination.

This is me turning the thief into a class that I would choose to play pretty much every damn time.


DCC Character Class, The Jack

Unless noted otherwise, the jack behaves in all respects as a thief of the same level. The jack does not automatically receive skill points, or follow a skill path.

Point System

Every level, the jack receives 5 points with which to upgrade his character. The points may be spent on the following:
  • Skills. Every point is worth a 3 point increase in a listed skill. Skills are capped at +15. There is no cap based on level. Now your level 1 jack can be the "Master of Unlocking"!
  • Magic. Every die increase in the Use Magic skill (a revised version of the Read Magic skill) costs one point. Transitioning from d16 to d20 costs 2 points, but the jack also receives a 1st level wizard spell of their choice upon reaching d20. Otherwise, the jack may purchase the use of spells that have been discovered in-game at a cost of 2x spell level. The jack may never learn 4th or 5th level spells. The jack may learn priest spells as a wizard. The jack can spellburn.
  • Upgrades. Points may be spent on character upgrades, including upgrades to core class abilities.

Core Abilites

Wild Magic

The Jack is a wild talent, not a learned wizard. His connection to the deeper mysteries comes and goes, waxes and wanes. Sometimes, inexplicably, the jack can connect directly to The Source, accomplishing amazing displays of sorcery infuriating to Wizards who have sacrificed years of their life to learn the Greater Mysteries.

The jack may attempt to cast any spell that he is familiar with, even if he has not mastered it. To do so, the jack burns 3x the spell level in luck points, and then rolls his Use Magic die. The jack may apply further luck and spellburn to his final roll, if desired. The Jack is familiar with any spell he has seen, or any spell he has had one week to study from a spellbook or other source.

Dirty Deeds

Through a combination of dirty fighting, cheap tricks, desperation, and blind luck, the jack is able to accomplish miraculous feats in battle, similar in effect to those of great warriors.

The jack may burn three luck points before attacking to declare a Dirty Deed, applying his luck die as if it were a deed die. The deed declared must fit the theme of the jack (e.g. telling a bawdy joke to inspire his comrades, rather than a noble speech).

Lucky Bastard

These bastards are really hard to kill. As they lack the focus and training of warriors and wizards, they survive primarily by chutzpah, cleverness, and dumb luck.

The jack has the same luck die progression and regeneration as a thief. In particular:
  • When burning luck, the jack has one chance to decide how many luck points to burn.
  • Any time the jack would ordinarily receive a permanent luck point, he instead tries to roll 3d6 over his current permanent luck score. If successful, the jack receives a 1 point increase to his permanent and temporary luck scores. If unsuccessful, the jack only receives a 1 point increase to his temporary luck score (this may be in excess of his permanent total)


Through character upgrades, the jack becomes better suited to certain roles. Upgrades allow the player to decide which direction to take the jack:

  • Lucky Bastard Mk. II (2): Roll 4d6, drop the lowest, when receiving luck.
  • Lucky Bastard Mk. III (2): Roll 5d6, drop the lowest two, when receiving luck.
  • Second Sight (3): When burning luck, make two rolls instead of one, deciding on the second roll after seeing the results of the first.
  • Shared Fate (3): May burn luck for other characters, 1 for 1.
  • Dirty Deeds Mk. II (2): Dirty Deeds only require two luck points.
  • Dirty Deeds Mk. III (2): Dirty Deeds only require one luck point.
  • Wild Magic Mk. II (2): Only requires 2x the spell level in luck points.
  • Wild Magic Mk. III (2): Only requires 1x the spell level in luck points.
  • HD Upgrade (1): Prior to rolling HP, upgrade the hit die by +1d. This may be selected multiple times, up to a cap of d12. This upgrade only applies to the current roll.
  • Stat Upgrade (1): Try to roll 3d6 over one attribute. If successful, add one permanent point to that attribute. Does not apply to luck.
  • Imp. Crit Range (3): Increase the crit range by one. May be selected multiple times, no cap.
  • [Judge Defined] (X): Create your own upgrades. Allow this feature to turn your DCC game into a bizarre classless/uniclass abomination. Rejoice.

Revised Skills

The jack makes use of the following list of available skills, modified from that available in the rulebook:

Backstab Tinker* Bushcraft*
Stealth* Spycraft* Architecture*
Sleight of Hand* Languages [Player Defined]*
Climb Poison [Judge Defined]*
Search* Use Magic*

Notes on some of the skills listed above:

Stealth - Covers move silently and hide in shadows.

Sleight of Hand - Includes picking pockets, concealing a weapon, minor physical (as opposed to magical) illusions.

Search - Upgraded version of find traps. Works on traps, secret doors, secret loot stashes, etc. The ability to toss a room quickly, and the training to notice anything out of the ordinary.

Tinker - Picking locks, disabling traps, and generally interacting with detailed, mechanical devices. Would also cover attempts to repair such devices.

Spycraft - Covers disguise, forge documents, protocol.

Poison - Covers both the use AND manufacture of poisons from appropriate ingredients (these may need to be purchased or quested for).

Use Magic - Covers scrolls, items, and devices, any of which would call for a spellcheck. One example would be Sezrekan's Ring of Fire.

Bushcraft, Architecture - Compare to the free LotFP Rules & Magic rulebook.

Player Defined, Judge Defined - Add any skill desired or appropriate to the game, per the Judge's discretion. Ideas might include Alchemy, Invent, Acrobatics, Resist Torture, Whatever, etc.