So you want to dive right in eh? Ok we can do that. First and foremost someone with much better skill than I has made a worksheet
for character creation. If you want someone a little more formal than a scratch peice of paper or a text document, there you go. At the end of this post I will put a coded character block for you to copy and paste and---you know let's just get to making awesome mice.
Also if you are interested in the lore and setting. Here is the Wiki
In Mouse Guard, unlike many other RPGs your character's back story and who he is
is important to game play. There are no classes, you are in complete control of what your character can do. But first we need to figure out what kind of mouse your mouse is.
Before we start, think about what kind of character you want to play in the world: A grizzled veteran, a young upstart or something in between? What’s his personality like? What’s his specialty?
(EXAMPLES WILL BE IN Whatever this color is
for future reference) I'm going to make a tough guardmouse. He’s a fighter and relies on his fighting prowess to get him through.
Next you need to think about what rank would you like to play? There are five ranks: tenderpaw, guardmouse, patrol guard, patrol leader, and guard captain. All have their benefits and drawbacks.
Tenderpaws are recruits. Guardmice are the foot soldiers. Patrol guard are veteran guardmice responsible for complicated or independent missions. Patrol leaders are Patrol guard who have demonstrated they can think independently and guide other mice. Guard captains are powerful mice appointed to the highest rank in the Guard due to their longstanding service and exemplary valor.
Now there can be only one Patrol Leader in a group and unless everyone agrees you can't be a Guard Captain. So for now, they are off the table. You should think about what you are comfortable playing. If you think you can take charge as a player and make a choice for the group, make a Patrol Leader. If you'd rather sit back and let people tell you what to do be an intern--I mean tenderpaw.
The ranks do effect your character in more ways than bragging rights. First it effects Age, Nature, and Health. Look, a handy chart!
Age and Health should be self explanitory. Will..for now think of it as a "thirst for adventure!" and "being awesome and experienced" score.
My character will be guardmouse rank. Let's put him at 24 years old. His Will is 3. His Health is 5
Nature stands for the mouse’s natural tendencies. It represents what he was born to do, and what helps him survive in the wild and cruel world. Nature is rated from 0 to 7. The higher your Nature rank, the more mouselike you are. The lower your rank, the more “human” you are.
You can use your Nature, which gives you more dice to roll. If you are: Escaping, Climbing, Hiding or Foraging you can use your Nature without penalty. If you use your Nature in situations outside of escaping, climbing, hiding and foraging, you risk losing a bit of it.
All characters have a base Nature of 3.
Here are some questions to help determine your mouse's Nature score. Answer truthfully and then see how it will effect you.
- Do you save for winter even if it means going without something now? Or do you use what you have when you need it?
When confronted, do you stand your ground and fight or do you run and hide?
Do you fear owls, weasels and wolves?
If you save for winter, increase your Nature by 1
. You may not take the Bold
If you run and hide, increase your Nature by 1
. Decrease your starting Fighter skill, if you take it, by 1.
If you do, increase your Nature by 1
. You may not take the Fearless
Traits? Skills? What is this tomfoolery? Just wait.
So my fella saves for winter, stands his ground when confronted, but he does fear owls, weasels and wolves. His starting Nature is 4.
Where are you From?
The territories are a big place:
So towns are pretty isolated. As such each town has their down specialties. Here is a list of the bare essentials. Want more information about each town? Mouse Guard Wiki to the rescue!
A busy working-class town.
Skills: Carpenter, Potter, Glazier
Traits: Steady Paw
One of the oldest cities and home to one of the two mines in the Territories.
Skills: Smith, Haggler
A once prosperous city, known for its medicinal moss.
Skills: Carpenter, Harvester
Renowned for its bakers and bread.
Skills: Harvester, Baker
Traits: Hard Worker
The home of the Mouse Guard.
Skills: Weaver, Armorer
Traits: Generous, Guard’s Honor
A busy little port town between Darkwater and Rustleaf.
Skills: Boatcrafter, Weather Watcher
Traits: Tough, Weather Sense
A simple town known for its delicious drinks!
Skills: Mason, Harvester, Miller
Known for its scientists, medicine and scent concoctions.
Skills: Scientist, Loremouse
Traits: Inquisitive, Rational
Choose one trait and one skill from the city in which your character was born. Write them down and put a check mark next to it.
My guardmouse is from Elmoss. That means I get the Carpenter or Harvester skill and Alert trait. I'll write down Carpenter and Alert and put a check mark next to them.
Skills are your mouse's experience. In the next section you will be given a number of choices. Each time you choose a Skill, note it on your sheet. Every time you choose that same skill again add a check mark. Every time you check that skill, your mouse become more experienced. When we are done with this section go and count up the number of checks you have next to a skill. Then add one.
That is your rating in the skill. That is how many dice you get to use when you use the skill.
Checking a skill three times gives a starting rating of 4 — three checks plus one.
1- Pick An Area Where You Are Naturally Talented. If you are a Tenderpaw or a Guard Captain, you can choose 2 (or one twice) . Everyone else gets 1
Let's take Deceiver. I don't trust people and am introverted.
- Apiarist-An apiarist is a specialist who raises bees and harvests their honey and wax.
Archivist-An archivist is a mouse who specializes in writing accounts of events for historical records.
Armorer-Armorers forge armor and weapons for the Guard and town militias.
Baker-A baker makes savory bread, delicious cookies and sweet cakes.
Boatcrafter-A boatcrafter specializes in all things boats! He can also use his knowledge to navigate waterways.
Brewer-The brewer’s always a popular mouse. He makes beer for the towns to drink. In some towns, the water is not good to drink, so beer’s all there is!
Carpenter-A carpenter makes useful items out of wood, like chairs, doors, cabinets, ladders, joints, pulleys and levers.
Cartographer-A cartographer creates and interprets maps. Supplies of paper from millers and ink from insectrists are always welcome.
Cook-Every patrol needs a cook. Your cook can make that hunger go away when you’re out in the wild, far from home or a cozy pub.
Deceiver-A deceiver uses lies, half-truths, ugly truth, soothing platitudes and intimidation to get what he wants.
Fighter-Mice are not natural fighters. The Fighter skill teaches them to overcome their natural inhibitions so they can capture, disable or even kill an opponent.
Glazier-Glaziers make glass vessels, window panes and lenses. The works of glaziers are rare and highly sought after — they’re fragile and expensive to make.
Haggler-Haggler is a specialized social skill used for bargaining over prices of goods and services.
Harvester-Harvesters are very important to the towns and cities of the Territories. These mice make forays into the wilds to gather grains, seeds, roots, herbs and other necessities.
Healer-The healer keeps mice whole and healthy. A healer can take supplies from harvesters and scientists in the form of herbs and medicine.
Hunter-The hunter is an intrepid mouse who journeys out into the wild and confronts animals — grazers, scavengers and even predators. He uses his skill and cunning to stalk, trap, drive off or kill his quarry.
Insectrist-The insectrist is a specialist who uses insects — beetles, caterpillars, worms, etc. — for a variety of purposes. He trains beetles to act as labor, uses caterpillars and spiders to spin silk, and worms to aerate soil for the harvesters. Crickets can be taught to act as weather watchers and trains of ants formed to transport small goods.
Instructor-An instructor knows how to transmit skills to another character.
Laborer-Laborers are the bulk of the workforce for the mouse towns and cities. They gather wood for the carpenters, stone for the masons and metal for the smiths. They dig ditches, carry stuff and generally just do what they are told.
Loremouse-Loremice study the ways and habits of animals. Using their knowledge, they can perform rudimentary communications and discern the Nature of the animal.
Militarist-A militarist is one who understands how to organize, supply and command a force of mice for battle.
Miller-A miller uses a millstone to grind substances into powders so they can be used in cooking, brewing and industry.
Orator-An orator makes speeches to sway crowds. This skill isn’t for convincing your friend, it is for moving a group to action.
Pathfinder-A pathfinder makes and marks paths between the mouse towns and cities, and to various resources and landmarks like streams, springs, lakes or fields of herbs. The Pathfinder skill is one of the most important skills.
Persuader-A persuader convinces another mouse to do what he wants in a friendly manner. A persuader shows you why it’s in your own best interest to help him out.
Potter-Potters create a variety of vessels for drinking, cooking and storing food.
Scientist- Scientists are learned mice. This skill combines astronomy, biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics.
Scout-A scout is adept at spotting predators on the prowl, sneaking behind enemy lines, trailing targets and finding hidden things.
Smith-Smiths make tools — needles, cutting implements, cooking implements and craftsmouse tools — and other hardware like hinges, bearings and nails. Smith is not a weapon-making skill.
Stonemason-Stonemasons cut stone and use it to make walls, bridges, arches and buildings.
Survivalist-The survivalist knows how to make shelters, find water, build fires and jury-rig tools.
Weather Watcher-The Weather Watcher skill is about spotting clouds, noting the direction of the wind, and detecting the amount of moisture in the air, correlated with celestial phenomena and signs present in soil and flora.
2- What was your parents’ trade? Tenderpaws choose 2; all others choose 1. Also, note this skill next to your Parents on your sheet or paper.
Both of my parents are Carpenters for his parents. Since I already wrote it down when I said I was from Elmoss, I just check mark it.
3-How do you convince people that you’re right or to do what you need? Patrol leaders and guard captains choose 2; all others choose 1:
4- With whom did you apprentice for the Guard? What was that mouse’s trade?
A young mouse seeking to join the Guard applies in either the spring or fall. They meet with a guardmouse in charge of new recruits and are welcomed into Lockhaven. These raw recruits are then distributed among the various tradesmice in Lockhaven to act as assistants, laborers and apprentices.
Check one skill. Also note the choice next to the Senior Artisan.
My senior in Lockhaven was named oh..Harald. He's a Carpenter
5- What did your mentor stress in training?
After his apprenticeship, the recruit is assigned a mentor. This guardmouse slowly introduces the tenderpaw to patrolling and other Guard duties. Some mentors may have more rigorous training methods or requirements than others. Some may focus on different aspects of Guard life.
Tenderpaws and patrol leaders choose 2; all others choose 1:
We'll say Godric was my mentor. He stressed the Survivalist skill during training.
6- What kind of experience do you have in the Guard?
All guardmice have a range of training and experience in skills important to their role.
Choose from the following skill list based on your experience with the Guard. You get checks based on your rank: tenderpaw 3, guardmouse 6, patrol guard 8, patrol leader 9, guard captain 12.
Tenderpaws consider Laborer part of the list.
Guardmice consider Haggler part of the list.
Patrol guard consider Cook part of the list.
Patrol leaders consider Persuader and Loremouse part of the list.
Guard captains consider Orator, Militarist and Administrator part of the list.
As a guardmouse, I have six checks to spend. We've not picked Fighter yet so, three checks next to Fighter, two next to Hunter and one next to Scout.
7- What’s Your Specialty?
Each player, except for tenderpaws,
may add one check to a skill from the list below. Each player must choose a unique specialty — no two players can have the same skill as their specialty.
Let's say someone else picked Fighter, we'll go to Survivalist then, for a total of two checks on my sheet.
Count check marks made for each skill and add 1. That total is your starting rating for that skill.
Again the highest rating for a skill is 6.
My skills look like this: Fighter 4, Hunter 3, Survivalist 3, Scout 2, Deceiver 3, Carpenter 4.
There is a special subset of skills known as wises. These skills represent pure knowledge and experience.
You start with a number of checks in wises in proportion to your rank. Tally your wises checks when you’re done — count the checks and add one to determine the starting rating. Just like skills!
Rank Checks for Wises
Patrol Guard 3
Patrol Leader 4
Guard Captain 6
Apiary-wise, Armor-wise, Autumn stormwise
Badger-wise, Barkstone-wise, Bird-wise, Blizzard-wise, Bramble-wise, Brush fire-wise, Burrow-wise
Celebrations-wise, Clear and warm weatherwise, Coast-wise, Cold rain-wise, Cold snap-wise, Copperwood-wise, Coyote-wise, Craft-wise, Crime-wise
Darkheather-wise, Deer-wise, Drought-wise
Elmoss-wise, Epidemic-wise, Escort-wise
Famine-wise, Flash flood-wise, Forest firewise, Forest-wise, Fox-wise, Freezing-wise, Frog-wise
Governor-wise, Grain-wise, Guard captainwise, Guardmouse-wise
Harvest-wise, Hawk-wise, Heat wave-wise, Herb-wise, Hidey hole-wise
Ice storm-wise, Ice-wise
Lake-wise, Leaf cover-wise, Lockhaven-wise
Mail-wise, Medicine-wise, Moose-wise, Mosswise, Mouse Guard-wise, Mud-wise
Open ground-wise, Owl-wise
Path-wise, Patrol guard-wise, Patrol leaderwise, Planting-wise, Poison-wise, Pond-wise, Predator-wise
Raccoon-wise, Rain-wise, Raven-wise, Rebellion-wise, Recipe-wise, Road-wise, Rocky terrain-wise
Scent Border-wise, Shaleburrow-wise, Shieldwise, Shore-wise, Shortages-wise, Snake-wise, Snow-wise, Sprucetuck-wise, Squirrel-wise, Star-wise, Stream-wise, Swamps-wise
Tall grass-wise, Tenderpaw-wise, Thorn-wise, Thunderstorm-wise, Tide-wise, Tradesmousewise, Trail-wise, Transport-wise, Trap-wise, Tunnel-wise, Turtle-wise
Unseasonably cold-wise, Unseasonably warm-wise
War-wise, Weasel-wise, Widget-wise, Wild country-wise, Wild mouse-wise, Wolf-wise
The wises list provides examples of wises for towns, animals and mice — Lockhaven-wise, Raccon-wise, Guardmouse-wise etc. If you wish to take a wise for anything unlisted, you may, within reason. Note the settlement/animal/weather/mouse and add “-wise” to it. You’re done. Yes. It's that simple. Simplicity-wise.
Let's get to politicing Lockhaven-wise 2 and Governor-wise 2.
How are we doing? Having fun yet?
Resources and Circles
Resources represent the Guard’s pay, but also how resourceful and clever the mouse is with his possessions and material goods.
Your Resources rating is determined by his rank: tenderpaw 1, guardmouse 2, patrol guard 3, patrol leader 4, guard captain 5.
The following six questions can modify that score:
My character practices Carpentry in the winter at Lockhaven ( + 1). His parents aren’t any of the indicated types (±0). His guardmouse is not particularly generous (±0). He’s not thrifty (±0). But he’s been in debt (-1). Being a survivalist, he does pack carefully for long journeys ( + 1). This is a net of + 1 added to his base of 2. I start with a Resources rating of 3.
- In winter, do you still practice a trade like weaving, smithing, or pottery for the Guard?
If so, increase Resources by 1. You must have the skill for the trade in question. You may not take the Leader trait to start. You’re too busy.
Are your parents smiths, politicians, merchants or apiarists?
If so, increase your Resources by 1. Your parents must be of the noted trade and may not be in the Guard.
Do you like to buy gifts for yourself and your friends?
If so, decrease your Resources by 1.
Are you thrifty?
If so, increase your Resources by 1. You may not take the Generous trait to start.
Have you ever been in debt? Or are you generally bad with money?
If so, decrease your Resources by 1.
Do you always pack carefully for a journey, ensuring you have everything you need?
If so, increase your Resources by 1. You may not take the Bold or Fiery traits to start.
The Circles ability represents how well-connected your character is. Tenderpaws start with a Circles rating of 1. Guardmice start with a Circles rating of 2. Patrol guard and patrol leaders start with a Circles rating of 3. Guard captains start with a Circles rating of 4.
Answer the following questions and modify your starting rating accordingly. The minimum starting rating is 1.
As guardmouse, I start with a Circles rating of 2. He’s not gregarious, but he does have an easy disposition (+1). He has no family tradition with the Guard (±0). He doesn’t want his character to have accomplished anything great yet (±0). He decides that he has a powerful enemy — a patrol leader of another patrol (-1). He’s not been convicted of a crime (±0), nor is he a loner (±0).
- Is your mouse gregarious? Does he have lots of friends? Does he make friends easily?
If you answered yes to 1 or more of these, increase Circles by 1. You may not take the Bitter or Jaded traits.
Do you have strong ties to the Guard? Perhaps a family tradition or allies within the Guard?
If so, increase Circles by 1. Either your parents must be in the Guard or your mentor must be family.
Has your character accomplished some great task in the Guard? Does he already have a reputation?
If so, increase Circles by 1.
Does your character have powerful enemies in the Territories?
If so, reduce Circles by 1.
Has your character been convicted of a crime?
If so, reduce Circles by 1.
Is your character a loner, tough and cool?
If so, reduce Circles by 1. You may not take the Extrovert trait.
That’s a net of ±0. These questions were USELESS!! I still start with a Circles rating of 2.
Traits describe the personality quirks and special qualities that all of the guardmice possess. Trait selection is the same as skill selection. You can choose a variety of traits or choose one or two traits multiple times. Each time you choose a trait you increase its value. There are three ranks of traits.
The first rank of a trait gives you an extra die once per session in a situation where the trait would be useful to the task at hand.
The second rank gives you the extra die for every roll of that ability when appropriate to the trait.
The third rank of a trait allows you to reroll all of the failed dice from one roll appropriate to the trait once per session.
1Choose a quality you were born with
All players get one check from this list. They can reinforce their hometown trait if it’s available, or pick something new.
Someone made a list of traits on this
So far my mouse is kinda a jerk. He seems like a loner that has made some enemies. But I have to be able to work within the patrol and not be all grimdark. So let's pick something that give me a softer edge. Compassionate looks good. First level!
2-Choose something you learned or inherited from your parents
This is for tenderpaws only. Take one check on this list.
I don't get one. Lame.
3-Life on the Road
Patrol leaders and guard captains may also choose a trait that represents a lesson learned during their tenure in the Guard. Guardmice and tenderpaws may not make this selection.
Finishing up yyaaaaaaay
Choose a name for your character. Names in Mouse Guard range from Old English, to Saxon, to Celtic to Hippy.
Common Mouse Names
Code: Select all
Let's name him Alten It’s not on the list but it sounds fitting.
Choose a fur color for your mouse. Brown is most common, followed by blonde and gray. Black and white are uncommon and red is rare.
Alten's fur is light brown.
You decided where you were born, what you learned and inherited from your parents. Now it’s time to name them. Choose appropriate names and write them on your character sheet.
Alten's parents are named Derk and Sallie Planking.
What is the name of the senior artisan whom you apprenticed with? Name him now and note him on your character sheet.
My senior is named Harald the Carpenter.
Who was your Guard mentor? In the case of tenderpaw characters, this must be a current player character, preferably a patrol leader. If not, then the mentor must be an older mouse. For other, more experienced characters, the mentor must be either an NPC or a player character with the Oldfur trait.
We already decided this, Godric.
Invent a character who is a friend to your guardmouse, someone who would help your character without hesitation. Choose a name for him, pick his profession or specialty and place him in or near one of the towns or cities on the map.
Alten’s friend is a mouse named Tuk. They grew up together in Elmoss. Alten went on to join the Guard, while Tuk fell on hard times and became a bandit. Even so, Alten never faulted his friend and still tries to remain close to him.
Invent a character who is an enemy to your guardmouse. It is preferable that the enemy be a mouse and not another animal. Choose a name for him, pick his profession or specialty and place him in or near one of the towns or cities on the map.
Your enemy can be from before your days in the Guard or from your time in service. It is permissible for the players to choose a common enemy.
Well we already have that enemy from the Circles question. Let's say that Alten has run afoul of another patrol leader early on in his career. A mission went wrong and now these two mice do not like each other at all. His name is Felix.
Your mentor gave you your cloak on the day you were formally inducted into the Guard. What color is it and why? What part of your personality made your mentor decide on that particular color? Tenderpaws do not start with a cloak and therefore do not make this choice.
Well, we've kinda figured that Alten has a heart of gold despire his demenor right? so Gold it is.
What weapon does your mouse carry? Common choices include: shield, knife, sword, staff, spear, hook and line, halberd, sling and bow.
Does he have any other tools or devices for his job? Note your choice down on your character sheet.
How about a bow for Alten’s weapon and a carving knife as an additional piece of equipment. If he needs anything else, he’ ll make it on the fly using his Survivalist skill.
These last two bits are the Belief and Instinct of your character. Hopefully by now you've got a good idea in your head what he or she is like. Let's codify that.
Write a Belief for your character based on how he views his role in the Guard. A Belief is an overarching ethical or moral stance.
So Alten's Belief: “I will keep others safe, even to the death”. When there is danger out there, Alten is the first to fight it.
How does your character react? What has your guardmouse been trained to do? Write an Instinct for your character.
Alten: “Put myself between harm and others.”
This is for two reasons. Alten is a good guy buy fairly anti-social. He would naturally be putting and volunteering for the most dangerous jobs because it means that no one else has to. This of course will come back to bite him if a retreat is needed or if someone is trying to save him.
There is also something called a Goal, but that is specific to the mission. So let's forget that now. Here is Alten's sheet.
Code: Select all
Name : Alten Parents: Derk (Carpenter) & Sallie (Carpenter)
Age : 24 Artisan: Harald (Carpenter)
Fur : Light Grey Friend : Tuk the Bandit
Cloak: Gold Enemy : Felix
Home : Elmoss Mentor : Godric(Survivalist)
Rank : Guardmouse
Belief : I will keep others safe, even to the death.
Instinct: Put myself between harm and others.
Nature (Mouse): 5
Will : 3
Health : 5
Resources : 3
Circles : 2
Fate Points : 1
Persona Points: 1
Bow, Quiver, Arrows, wood carving knife
I have discovered a
The law and justice are two entirely different matters.
I was born with a six-gun in my hand, behind a gun I'll make my final stand.