Friday 24 January 2014

200 Failed Medieval Careers

I like the idea that new characters start with a profession they failed at/got bored with/were fired from before they started out on the road to fortune and doom.
I made the jobs pretty standard because I am boring and so try to keep things fairly normal until the Weird Shit starts happening, so there are no leech-fuckers or tree-gobblers or anything like that.
But you can rename them if you want I don't mind!

Also I managed to get to 200 things with only like 2 joke options which for me is fucking amazing.

If you're complaining because your weedy, highly intelligent wizard used to be a bouncer then I guess that's why he got fired, right?

Spreadsheets for you to have!

The thing I just finished:
d200 Failed Medieval Careers

Hey what you found some esoteric bullshit mundane medieval job?! Chuck it on here! It could be great!
Public spreadsheet YOU can edit! (Edit: Someone's turned this into a 5e version!)


Basic Deal

At char gen roll a random profession!
 - A free (often repurposed) weapon!
 - A free random extra thing!
 - A bonus to doing stuff if you can justify it being related to your job!

With thanks to/stolen from:

DCC quickstart guide
Giblet Blizzard (often translated from weird-ese for portability, sorry Jez!)

Tenkar's Tavern

Roles, Rules and Rolls

The Table Itself in case you are unable to get to the spreadsheet:

Roll Occupation Starting Weapon Something extra
1 Academic Staff Quill and ink
2 Actor Cudgel Flowers, 1 bunch
3 Alchemist Staff Oil, 1 flask
4 Animal Trainer Whip Pony
5 Apothecary Dagger Pestle and mortar
6 Aristocrat Rapier Foppish wig
7 Armourer Spiked gauntlet (cestus) Iron helmet
8 Artist Sharpened paintbrush Self portrait
9 Assassin Knife in sleeve sheathe Poison, 1 dose
10 Astrologer Wiggly dagger Spyglass
11 Atilliator Crossbow Iron bars
12 Baker Breadknife Bread, 1 loaf
13 Barber Straight razor Scissors
14 Bartender Crossbow Beer, 6 pack
15 Beekeeper Jar of bees Honey, 1 jar
16 Beggar Sling Crutches
17 Bellringer Long hook (mancatcher) Rope, 50'
18 Besom maker Broom (staff) Corn stalks, 1 bundle
19 Blacksmith Blacksmith's hammer Steel tongs
20 Bloodletter Knife Leeches, 1 jar
21 Bodger Knife Shaving horse
22 Bouncer Brass knuckles Groin protection
23 Bowyer Longbow Spare bowstring
24 Brewer Keg tapper Cask of ale
25 Bricklayer Bricklaying stick (staff) Bag of bricks
26 Busker Reinforced instrument Instrument case.
27 Butcher Meat cleaver Ham hock
28 Butler Empty bottle Tin serving tray
29 Candlestick maker Candlestick 3 candles
30 Caravan guard Shortsword Linen, 1 yard
31 Cartographer Shortsword Local area map
32 Chalk cutter Chisel Chalk, 5 pieces
33 Charcoal burner Scoop Charcoal, 1 bag
34 Cheesemonger Cheesewire (garotte) Cheese, 1 wheel
35 Chimney sweep Broom (staff) Wire brush
36 Chirurgeon Bonesaw Needle and thread
37 Clockmaker Turnscrew (ye olde screwdriver) Specialist's tools
38 Clown Club Huge shoes
39 Cobbler Awl Shoehorn
40 Colporteur Letter opener Religious tome
41 Cook Fillet knife Chef hat
42 Cooper Crowbar Barrel
43 Courtesan Stiletto in boot sheath Make up kit
44 Crystal carver Chisel Crystals, 1 pouch
45 Cultist Wiggly dagger Blood, 1 pint
46 Cutpurse Dagger Small chest
47 Dentist Hammer Sack of teeth
48 Diplomat Cudgel Fancy clothes
49 Ditch digger Shovel Dirt, 1 bag
50 Dog breeder Whip Dog
51 Drug dealer Shank Cocaine-analog, 1 oz.
52 Dung collector Pitchfork Manure, 1 bag
53 Dyer Stirring paddle (club) 3 small jars of dye
54 Engraver Chisel 3 Etchings
55 Falconer Thick leather glove Trained hawk
56 False prophet Staff Devoted disciple
57 Farmer (crops) Scythe Ox
58 Farmer (dairy) Goad (spear) Milk, 1 pint
59 Farmer (drugs) Shank 3 joints
60 Farmer (flowers) Spade Flowers, 1 bunch
61 Farmer (fruit) Garden shears Fruit, 1 bag (5 standard rations)
62 Farmer (herbs) Sickle Herbs, 1 pouch
63 Farmer (mushrooms) Trowel (dagger) Mushrooms, 1 bag
64 Farmer (pigs) Crook (staff) Piglet
65 Farmer (poultry) Boning knife Hen
66 Farmer (vegetables) Hoe (staff) Vegetables, 1 bag (5 standard rations)
67 Farmer (worms)  Club Worms, 1 jar
68 Farrier Hoof nippers (club) Horseshoe, iron
69 Fence Light crossbow 10sp sewn into jacket hem
70 Fireman Fire axe Bucket
71 Fisherman (freshwater) Boning knife Fishing rod & tackle
72 Fisherman (sea) Large net Fish
73 Flagellant Thick, knotted rope (flail) Shitty relic
74 Fletcher Shortbow Arrows, Bundle of 100
75 Cupbearer Steak knife Antidote, 1 vial
76 Forester Longbow Bear trap
77 Fortune teller Wiggly dagger Tarot deck
78 Fowler Boning knife Dog
79 Fuller Club Bale of wool
80 Furrier Skinning knife Dog pelt
81 Gambler Club Dice
82 Gardener Shovel Secateurs
83 Glassblower Glassblowing tube 3 empty jars
84 Gluemaker Huge spoon Glue, 1 pot
85 Gong farmer Trowel (dagger) Night soil, 1 bag
86 Pimp Cane (club) Fancy clothes
87 Grave digger Shovel Grave dirt, 1 bag
88 Grave robber Shovel Small yet valuable totem (5sp)
89 Greengrocer Staff Handcart
90 Grifter Dagger Quality cloak
91 Gutter cleaner Gutter pole (staff) Bucket
92 Gyspy Sling Voodoo doll
93 Haberdasher Scissors (dagger) Pocketful of buttons
94 Handyman Hammer Ladder
95 Hawker Dagger Small, valuable goods (10sp)
96 Hayward Shears Horn
97 Faith healer Club Holy water, 1 vial
98 Chapman Shortsword Pony
99 Herbalist Dagger Herbs, 1 pouch
100 Hermit Gnarled oak club Bearskin cloak
101 Horse whisperer Lassoo (mancatcher) Horse hair brush
102 Hunter Shortbow Deer Pelt
103 Icecutter Ice saw Big chunk of ice
104 Incense bearer Censor (flail) Incense
105 Jester Dart Silk clothes
106 Jeweler Chisel (dagger) Uncut jewel worth 20sp
107 Joiner Mallet Chair
108 Knacker Hammer Jar of glue
109 Lamp lighter 10' pole Flint and tinder
110 Lawyer Rapier Law books
111 Leatherworker Club Leather armour
112 Hetheleder Long knife Heather, 1 bag
113 Librarian Letter opener Interesting book
114 Lighterman Ten foot pole Shallow-bottomed boat
115 Linkboy Big stick (club) Hooded lantern
116 Locksmith Dagger Specialist's tools
117 Lookout Shortbow Spyglass
118 Mason Hammer Chunk of marble
119 Mercenary Longsword Leather armour
120 Messenger Shortbow Horse
121 Midwife Scalpel (dagger) Forceps
122 Miller Club Flour, 1 bag.
123 Milliner Scissors (dagger) Vial of mercury
124 Miner Pickaxe Bag of coal
125 Minstrel Dagger Lame instrument
126 Moneylender Dagger 3d6 sp
127 Monk Staff Religious tome
128 Mucker Pitchfork (spear) Broom
129 Night watchman Truncheon Shiny steel helmet
130 Nobleman's son Longsword silver ring worth 20 sp
131 Organ thief Scalpel (dagger) Spare kidney on ice in sack
132 Orphan Big stick (medium, smashy) Rag doll
133 Ostler Staff Bridle
134 Outlaw Shortsword Leather armour
135 Oyster raker Rake Crushed oyster shells, 1 bag
136 Painter Paint scraper (dagger) Paints and brushes
137 Parchment maker Scraping knife (dagger) Parchment, 3 pieces
138 Pawnbroker Crossbow Fancy clothes
139 Peat cutter Spade Peat, 1 bag
140 Philosopher Sharp pen Large, half-empty tome
141 Pickler Ladle Brine, 1 jar
142 Pie maker Rolling pin Delicious pie
143 Pirate Cutlass Treasure map
144 Plague doctor Knife Crow-beaked mask
145 Postman Cudgel Handcart
146 Prison warden Mancatcher Bunch of keys
147 Prostitute Brass knuckles Make up kit
148 Puppeteer Club Puppet
149 Quill cutter Dagger Uncut feathers, 2d4
150 Rat catcher Long net (staff) Small but vicious dog
151 Riverbank comber Gaff hook (mancatcher) Manky net
152 Sailor Shortsword Spyglass
153 Scholar Dagger Complicated Book
154 Scribe Darts Parchment, 10 sheets
155 Scrimshaw Engraving awl (dagger) Ivory, 1 piece
156 Scullion Stick Raggedy clothing
157 Seamstress Long needle (dagger) Unspun wool
158 Servant Dagger Locket
159 Sewerhand Staff Stanky clothes
160 Shaman Mace Herbs, 1 pouch
161 Shepherd Crook (staff) Sheep
162 Shingler Mallet Roof tiles
163 Shipwright Hammer Pocketful of nails
164 Shoe shiner Shinin' rag (garotte) Shoe polish
165 Shrubber Shears A herring
166 Sinecure Rapier Wax seal stamp
167 Slave Club Funny looking rock
168 Slaver Whip Map of foreign lands
169 Smuggler Sling Waterproof sack
170 Soldier Spear Shield
171 Spice merchant Club Spice, 1 bag
172 Spy Dagger in sleeve sheath Specialist's tools
173 Squire Longsword Steel helmet
174 Stevedore Crowbar Empty crate
175 Stonecutter Sledgehammer Fossil
176 Milkmaid Wooden stool Milk bucket
177 Street magician Staff White rabbit
178 Street sweeper Broom (staff) Trash, 1 bag
179 Tailor Long needle (dagger) Fine clothes
180 Taxidermist Long needle (dagger) Stuffed cat
181 Thatcher Shearing hook (axe) Legget
182 Thief Dagger 5 caltrops
183 Thug Club Necklace of teeth
184 Tinker Hammer Tin snips
185 Torturer Jagged knife Specialist's tools
186 Trader Shortsword 20 cp
187 Trapper Sling Badger pelt
188 Urchin Big stick Alms bowl
189 Vaginarius Shortsword Ornate scabbard
190 Vagrant Hobbling cane (staff) Alms bowl
191 Veterinarian Long needle (dagger) Painkillers
192 Village idiot Sausage Urine, 1 pint
193 Vintner Staff Fine wine, 1 bottle
194 Wainwright Club Pushcart
195 Water carrier Staff Two wooden buckets
196 Weaponsmith Longsword Oils and whetstones
197 Weaver Dagger Fine suit of clothes
198 Window tapper Staff 10' pole
199 Woodcutter Handaxe Wood, 1 bundle
200 Zealot Gnarled staff Soapbox


  1. I particularly like the zealot. A failed zealot could perhaps re-repurpose his bonus gear and become the Johnny Appleseed of hygiene. "Alright you smelly bastards choose: the stick or the soap!"

    By the way, it's good to see you blogging again regularly.

  2. First contribution to the Gygaxian democracy: check.

    Great work man.

  3. OK, made sure every profession on this list was on the spreadsheet and added a few of my own.

  4. Replies
    1. Roll a d20 and a d10, like beefed up percentile dice.

    2. I started two groups this month and used this table with both.

      It was incredible! They choose a name, and then rolled a failed career ... and then money and class and everything else. Such a good way to start a game with new players. Thank you so much!

    3. Thanks man! It's honestly the best feeling to know that I've made something people are using!

  5. It continues to be awesome. Yesterday a player's real life twin decided to join our game. Doesn't she roll "sheperd" as well. Couldn't have been better to have two sheep in the game, cloned as it were, just like Dolly.

    A question came up though, how do you get to be #1 Academic? If the d20 is the first two digits and the d10 is the final digit then a roll of a 1/1 = #11Atillator.

    Am I doing this wrong?

    1. Oh good question! If you roll a 20 and a 1, it rolls back round to the #1 result (because there's no 201 result, naturally).

      Awesome to hear about Dolly the Shepards!

    2. Thanks! Dolly the Shepards have since graduated. For this year's batch I have adjusted the table I downloaded from you to run from 10 up to 209.

  6. Censor in the priest entry is actually spelt Censer, just thought I'd let you know

  7. A shame these comments will be going away with G+. :(

    I'm making a modified form of this table for my own campaign. I got to see the benefits of a former profession table when running DCC for a few years. Thanks so much for the head start - I'll be using at least half of this!

    Incidentally, a d666 table has 216 entries. That's the form my table will take.

  8. Plague Doctor should really be carrying a rod (club or staff), as that was actually a part of their equipment, historically speaking. They used it to lift clothing so they could examine patients without having to touch them, and also to keep away those ambulatory infected who might try to get too close.