Eric Humbert, Master of the Hunt (Companion)


When his village was pillaged by raiders, the very young Eric fled to the forest where he found refuge with and was raised by the local animal inhabitants. He grew up on the outskirts of human society, only trading for necessities and retreating back to the comfort of nature. He quickly found himself as a born leader and trainer of animals of every nature. He came to the attention of the Order of Hermes when a magi questing for a familiar found his soul mate among Eric's pack. Seeing the prominence and value the Order places on their magical companions, Eric began gravitating towards the hermetic community, trading trained animals and his knowledge of magical animals for his keep. Eric was recruited into the Atlantis Cabal, but barely needed persuading. The idea of exploring the forgotten wilds and learning the new creatures of Atlantis has proven to be an irresistible lure.

A ranger/animal trainer who can train mundane or magical (up to might 10-15) animals, from both land and sea, in the service of the covenant, inspired by the rules in ROP:M pg 81. He is a mundane human with Master of (Animal) Creatures and Master of (Aquam) Creatures and will be generating totals with Animal handling + Magic Lore of near 20 at game start. In game I expect him to use these critters as scouts and/or workers in the service of the covenant.

Hold for Character sheet

That concept doesn't seem unreasonable. Try not to go overboard with Attributes, though.

For review:

Eric Humbert, Master of the Hunt

Size: 0
Confidence Score: 1 (3)
Age: 34
Decrepitude: 0(0)
Warping: 2(15)


[tableborder][tr][th]Characteristic[/th] [th]Score[/th][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Int[/center][/td] [td][center]0[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Per[/center][/td] [td][center]+1[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Str[/center][/td] [td][center]+1[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Sta[/center][/td] [td][center]+1[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Pre[/center][/td] [td][center]+2[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Com[/center][/td] [td][center]0[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Dex[/center][/td] [td][center]+1[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td][center]Qik[/center][/td] [td][center]0[/center][/td][/tr][/tableborder]

Master of (Animal) Creatures
Master of (Aquam) Creatures
Puissant Animal Handling
Cautious With Animal Handling
Animal Ken
Lesser Benediction – Animal Whisperer (+3 bonus to totals interacting with animals during training, leading, or similar circumstance)
Faerie Blood – Cernunnos Faerie God
Puissant Magic Lore
Faerie Sympathy – Animal Training
Wanderer (free)

Driven: Discover Atlantean Species (major)
Feral Upbringing
Pagan (worship Cernunnos)
Faerie Companion (unsure of this, can possibly change for magical mount or animal companion)


[tableborder][tr][th][left]Ability[/left][/th] [th]Value[/th] [th][left]Specialty[/left][/th] [th]XP[/th][/tr]
[tr][td]Animal Handling[/td] [td][center]5+2[/center][/td] [td]Training[/td] [td][center]75[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Animal Ken[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]Communication[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Athletics[/td] [td][center]2[/center][/td] [td]grace[/td] [td][center]15[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Awareness[/td] [td][center]2[/center][/td] [td]in the wild[/td] [td][center]15[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Brawl[/td] [td][center]4[/center][/td] [td]unarmed[/td] [td][center]50[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Concentration[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]Tinting Auras[/td] [td][center]15[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Faerie Lore[/td] [td][center]1[/center][/td] [td]Sympathy[/td] [td][center]5[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Faerie Sympathy Trait[/td] [td][center]3+1[/center][/td] [td]n/a[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Folk Ken[/td] [td][center]2[/center][/td] [td]nobles[/td] [td][center]15[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Hunt[/td] [td][center]4[/center][/td] [td]leading animals[/td] [td][center]50[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Leadership[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]animals[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Living Language: Gaelic[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]conversational[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Magic Lore[/td] [td][center]5+2[/center][/td] [td]animals[/td] [td][center]80[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Ride[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]Command Beast[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Stealth[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]in the wild[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Swim[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]freshwater[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr]
[tr][td]Survival[/td] [td][center]3[/center][/td] [td]leading beasts[/td] [td][center]30[/center][/td][/tr][/tableborder]

There's lot's of shenanigans Eric can do with animals, but most are going to be up to Storyteller discretion. For example, since Eric can train about ten mundane animals per season, can he start with a loyal dog (or wolf) pack, a small flock of various birds, and a few horses/oxen? I intend that he also train sea critters such as dolphins and whales, but I think that's outside the scope of pre-story. He can also train non-sentient creatures of land and sea, but will need help from others in locating and safely trapping said dangerous creatures...

For the troupe:
Eric can supplement his training by tinting a faerie aura and generating loyal personality traits in his critters. This obviously requires a faerie aura, which can be hopefully be generated by his faerie companion. Does anyone object to weak faerie auras on the isle?

What other critters do people think would be useful to have around? Be creative, not only can we use mundane abilities, but also magical abilities of critters might ten-ish or less.

OOC: I think we absolutely need a faerie presence and anything which helps cultivate that is excellent. I'd prefer if the presence was zoned so those Fae are not running amuck everywhere all the time though. We need multiple auras of each type, perhaps specialised to a purpose. Same could be said for the other aura types too. E.g. Putting the Church on the edges of the island so it does not extend its aura through the rest of the lands.
Hopefully the island is large enough so that all the different zones can be established without too much hassle or serious conflict.

Critters I'll have to get back to you though, as I've never quite grokked the reason that fae persist across generations.
Initially being able to trade with the Fae for materials and resources which they generate might be handy. The "straw to gold" style resource is not needed by us, but a source of rare tradable goods, like converting something we will have in abundance to something we lack would be good. Especially if we will lack it early.
Making an intangible like stories or legends into a tangible like rare ink or paper?
Performing the role of protectors or Gardeners in a faerie forest or faerie wild? Harvesters?

Although Eric went the Faerie Sympathy route, the beasts he can train are either mundane or magical. I'm not even sure there are faeries with cunning instead of intelligence? The rules specify magic creatures, so any faerie (or dominion or infernal) critter training would need to be approved by Trogdor.

I intend to eventually have a sizeable contingent of critters hunting, fishing and gathering basic resources. Birds and sea critters for scouting, even over long distance. Mounts, perhaps even flying or swimming for our turb. Dogs available to use the Marvelous Hound enchantment on. Imagine what a tame whale could do to enemy ships! Or a wolf pack to enemy scouts. Oxen that plow with minimal direction. Teamsters that don't require drivers. Many of these are probably on the fringe of animal training, but we have mythic resources with which to train them, such as a trainer who can actually talk to his pack.

Eric is also ideally able to find and enrich Objects of Virtue. Something to think upon.

Your biggest limitation is going to be the fact that your trained animals have animal intelligence. Take self-driving teamsters, for example. If you're talking about horses or ponies that can run the same route with minimal instruction, then yea, that's possible. But unless it's very familiar with the locations, an animal isn't going to be able to take itself just anywhere. And there's always the problem of unexpected events. animals without guidance are never very good at dealing with surprises. They are, by definition, not of human intelligence.

That having been said, there is definitely a lot you can do with animal training, especially with mythic resources. Though someone will likely have to direct the animals through non-routine activities.

Also, just so you know, the plan is to raise an island from under the water. There won't be any native land animals on New Atlantis, except for the ones you bring there. (And some few that might move there on their own - I'm thinking sea birds, mostly.)

I understand. I do not want to have unrealistic expectations. Would it be too much to hope it could act as a labor multiplier, allowing one "supervisor" to do the work of several laborers?

I am hoping Eric's ability to speak to them, clearly explain new tasks and use skills to sooth the uncertainty of new tasks will be able to overcome these.

That's why I asked if he could start with land animals. I expect his first task will be to tame a bunch of mundane sea critters for fishing and/or scouting. IRL hunting in virgin grounds is only limited by how much you can process/store/preserve, hence a trained sea critter might bring in many times it's own needs in a season so long as there was an ability to process (rego?) or preserve the catch.

That seems perfectly reasonable. One coordinator could probably lead multiple well-trained animals.

That will certainly help. But there's only so much complicated direction that animal intelligence will be able to cope with.

My only qualm here is that I've never seen marine animals ever trained to fish. How exactly would that work?

Historically Marine animals have largely been trained for entertainment- and mostly recently. The Navy did train Dolphins to sweep for naval mines, and a frequent part of many shows is to have a trainer either ride or be pulled by dolphins, so in terms of utility they could probably be seen as similar to horses.
As to fishing, I would imagine you would have to find marine animal which naturally hordes some of its food or at least takes it to land to eat, and may bring more back due to other animals raiding its horde or be social enough to try and share (the way cats try and share the mice they have caught with their owners...) In either case I would not expect food production to be significant. Certainly not compared with a ship crewed with fishermen...

Perhaps the best way to do this would be to have dolphins or sea lions help with the catch rather than try to do it on their own. Both Plinys document several instances of dolphins herding fish into nets, and also dolphins have been seen to herd fish onto shore where they can be gathered by laborers.

And, as you said, they make great "sea-horses" and/or grogs for underwater adventures.

I could definitely see trained dolphins working with fishermen to herd fish into nets.

Unless we have the mage that recruited you yet, my new character might fit perfectly. She would love Eric because he can speak to her when she is in animal form (She is shapeshifter) without her needing to give away that she can speak normally in animal form (talking animals raise eyebrows).

How can she speak while in animal form? Will she know Voice of the Bjornaer Magus (or a similar spell)?

Minor Virtue: Unbound tongue, not that she will want to use it often unless she has to but yes, she can pretty much freely cast in her animal forms (though not if gagged, silenced or wanting to be stealth, for those she will need to take the penalty for quiet or no voice)