Val CHA Cost Roll Notes 15 STR 5 12- Lift 200 kg; 3d6 HTH Damage  16 DEX 12 12- 16 CON 6 12- 18 INT 8 13- PER Roll 13- 16 EGO 6 12- 20 PRE 10 13- PRE Attack: 4d6 6 OCV 15 6 DCV 15 3 OMCV 0 5 DMCV 6 4 SPD 20 Phases: 3, 6, 9, 12 6 PD 4 Total: 6 PD (0 rPD) 6 ED 4 Total: 6 ED (0 rED) 6 REC 2 36 END 4 12 BODY 2 30 STUN 5 Total Characteristics Cost: 124 Movement: Running: 12m/24m Leaping: 4m/8m Swimming: 4m/8m Cost Powers & Skills 10 Flurry Of Blows: Autofire (3 shots; +¼) for up to 4d6 HKA, All Attacks Must Be Against The Same Target (-0); OIF (specific type of weapon of opportunity; -½), END 1 30 Riposte: Trigger (Activating the Trigger is an Action that takes no time, Trigger requires a Zero Phase Action to reset; when character Blocks an enemy’s attack and wants to strike back; +¾) for up to 4d6 of HKA; OIF (edged weapon of opportunity; -½), END 4 6 Brawling: HA +1d6, Reduced Endurance (0 END; +½); Hand-To-Hand Attack (-¼) 5 No Stranger To Battle: +10 PRE; Only To Defend Against Offensive Presence Attacks (-1) Martial Arts: Hand-To-Hand Combat Skills Maneuver OCV DCV Effect 4 Bind +1 +0 Bind, 25 STR 4 Counterstrike +2 +2 Weapon +2 DC Strike, Must Follow Block 4 Duck -- +5 Dodge, Affects All Attacks, Abort 5 Parry +1 +3 Block, Abort 5 Slash -2 +1 Weapon +4 DC Strike 3 Strike +1 +0 Weapon +2 DC Strike 5 Takeaway +0 +0 Grab Weapon, 25 STR to take weapon away 3 Takedown +1 +1 Weapon Strike; Target Falls 1 Weapon Element: Blades, Empty Hand Notes: Empty Hand for Bind, Takeaway, Takedown Only Perks 5 Fringe Benefit: General 5 Money: Well Off 12 Positive Reputation: hero of the wars in Germania, capable general, an honorable man (the Armies of the North) 14-, +4/+4d6 Talents 3 Ambidexterity (no Off Hand penalty) 2 Off-Hand Defense Skills 20 +2 with All Attacks 16 +2 with HTH Combat 12 +4 versus Hit Location Penalties with HTH Combat 3 Breakfall 12- 10 Fights Six Men At Once: Defense Maneuver I-IV 3 KS: Roman Army History And Customs 13- 5 Language: Latin (idiomatic; literate) 0 Language: Spanish (idiomatic; literate) 2 Navigation (Land) 13- 3 "Three Weeks From Now, I'll Be Harvesting My Crops...": Oratory 13- 2 PS: Farmer 11- 2 PS: Soldier 11- 7 Riding 14- 7 "At My Signal, Unleash Hell": Tactics 15- 0 TF: Equines 5 Two-Weapon Fighting ; HTH Multiple Attacks Only (-1) 4 WF: Common Melee Weapons, Javelins and Thrown Spears, Thrown Sword 3 Traveler 1 1) "They Say No.": CuK: Germania Barbarian Customs 11- 2 2) AK: Germania 13- 2 3) AK: Hispania 13- 1 4) AK: The Roman Empire 11- 1 5) CK: Rome 11- Total Powers & Skill Cost: 208 Total Cost: 331 175+ Matching Complications (50) 15 DNPC: wife and child Infrequently (Normal; Group DNPC: x2 DNPCs) 5 Distinctive Features: General's Armor (Easily Concealed; Noticed and Recognizable; Detectable By Commonly-Used Senses) 5 Distinctive Features: SPQR ("Senatus Populusque Romanus" ["the Roman senate and people"]) tattoo (Easily Concealed; Noticed and Recognizable; Detectable By Commonly-Used Senses) 15 Psychological Complication: Honorable—honors his oaths, repays his debts, faithful to his family (Common; Strong) 15 Psychological Complication: Loyal To Caesar Marcus Aurelius (Common; Strong) 20 Social Limitation: Subject To Orders (Very Frequently; Major) Total Complications Points: 50 Experience Points: 156
Background/History: Maximus Decimus Meridus is a Roman general, commanding forces in Germania, where he hopes to bring an end to Caesar Marcus Aurelius’s twelve-year campaign to conquer the barbarian tribes. Under the watchful eyes of Caesar Aurelius himself, Maximus leads his men to a phenomenal victory, utterly destroying the army arraigned against him. Later, back in camp, Caesar Aurelius informs Maximus that he, Caesar, has decided to appoint Maximus the new Emperor of Rome. His reasons for this include the observation that his son, Commodus is “not a moral man” and that Maximus is the best choice to restore the power of the Senate and make Rome a republic again. Unfortunately for Maximus, Commodus doesn’t take the news that the throne is not to be his, and in a fit of ambition, rage, and grief, kills his father.
Maximus, for his part, refuses to accept Commodus as the new Caesar and intends to return to Rome to consult the Senate. Commodus, in turn, declares Maximus a traitor and sends him off to be executed. Commodus also dispatches troops to kill Maximus’s family and servants, and burn his farm in Hispania. However, Maximus escapes from his would-be executers and returns home to find his wife and son dead and his farm in ashes. Stricken with grief, he manages to bury their corpses, but collapses over their graves, not recovering until some time later, when he finds himself in the hands of slavers.
Sold into the gladiatorial arena, Maximus uses his years as a soldier to good effect, killing his foes with great speed. He soon becomes a crowd favorite, and eventually is brought to Rome, where he is to fight in the Colosseum. Knowing Commodus enjoys the gladiatorial games, Maximus begins to craft a plan for escape and eventual revenge on the killer of his wife and child.
Personality/Motivation: First and foremost, Maximus is (or was) an honorable man. When asked about his current state, Maximus’s first thinks of his men, especially the wounded. He also is loyal to Caesar Aurelius, and while not one for Rome and its politics, accepts Aurelius’s plan to restore Rome to its former status as a republic. However, when in the arena Maximus becomes a survivor, dispatching his foes with speed and showing no interest in crowd-pleasing antics. It is also telling than when he and a dozen other gladiators are pitted against several chariots with archers, Maximus first wants to know who else had served in the army, then makes plans to ensure he (and the rest of his fellow gladiators) can survive the upcoming fight.
Quote: “My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions, loyal servant to the true emperor, Marcus Aurelius. Father to a murdered son, husband to a murdered wife. And I will have my vengeance, in this life or the next.”
Powers/Tactics: A man with years of experience in the field, Maximus is the sort of general who leads from the front, destroying a barbarian army by personally heading up a calvary charge into the enemy’s flank. While not exceptionally fast, Maximus is very skilled, and often defaults to blocking incoming attacks (either with his shield or a sword) and then instantly counterattacking. At several points he’s seen unleashing a rapid series of slashes, cutting at a foe two or three times in quick succession. Maximus is also an opportunist in battle and will use anything and everything to win (and thus survive). He’s hurled a shield at a foe, stabbed a man in the foot to get him off balance, tripped an opponent, and used his experience with hand-to-hand combat to perform such stunts as locking up a man’s arm, then stripping him of his weapon.
As Maximus disdain’s flashy stunts, a good way to replicate his fighting style would be to place most of his levels in DCV (representing his constant blocking) and use only the most efficient of attacks. For example: if Maximus is unarmed, he’ll try a Takeaway; if his foe is slow-moving he might try a Takedown; if his foe is unarmored, he’ll use Flurry of Blows; and any time he Blocks he’ll use Riposte.
Appearance: Maximus stands just under six feet in height, with the build of a man who lives on a farm and spends most of his time in the field. His hair is black, cropped short, and he wears a close-trimmed beard. As for clothing, Maximus tends to wear armor in the field, and whatever he’s given as a gladiatorial slave.
Designer’s Notes: While the film Gladiator is very loosely based on real events, Maximus Decimus Meridus isn’t. That said, he’s a great character and with a name change can be dropped into any number of fantasy campaigns in need of an experienced general and/or war lord. The character sheet itself is based on scenes and events from the film, but it’s likely a man with Maximus’s experience knows a lot more then the film shows. However, I’ll leave such speculative skills to prospective GMs who wish to use the character (or a variant there of) in their own games.
The basic plot of Gladiator would make an excellent campaign for a group of PCs to run through. Perhaps they’re all prisoners of war, or have been framed, or simply were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Now they’re slaves, sentenced to fight in the arena until they die. But if they get lucky, maybe, just maybe, they can escape—and, perhaps, get revenge on those who put them in the arena in the first place.
“Are you not entertained?”
(Maximus Decimus Meridus created by Russell Crowe and Ridley Scott, character sheet created by Michael Surbrook.)
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