Many times in the Final fantasy series we have seen our heroes have the ability to change jobs throughout the game. A great game mechanic that lets players be able to build and change up the game how they see fit. This optional system is here to emulate that. A group of heroes who can change their class on the fly, accommodating to any situation needed of them. This optional system should be taken with the utmost caution, as it is heavy on player maintenance and game balance and is intended for groups with 3 or less players. While larger groups can use, its intent is to help reduce the stress of needing to fulfill certain roles, and also for groups who really like to experiment or want a true FF5 feel. There are different types of play stated further down that you can use to ease your way into this system. Lets get started.
The WoL system is simple at its core. Using this system means the PCs have access to multiple classes, meaning multiple character sheets. They are all the same character, but each sheet changes the characters attributes, skills, and abilities as if they was an entirely new character. The only thing that doesn’t change is the items of the said character. Depending on the “type” of play (covered later) will determine how many classes and how frequent the PC’s can change. But before all that it will be easier to go over what rules all the types of play go by.
Having Multiple Classes
Each PC will have multiple classes for the same character. This means a separate sheet should be used for each class. PC’s will make a character such as their gender and race, etc. After that, they will use that character as a basis for their available classes and choose a starting one to start the game in. All the sheets should be different aside from Racial descriptions (including abilities) such as name, age and general look and attributes, traits, and items. All classes also always have the same XP. Everything else from ability scores, feats, hit points, and skills are different per class/sheet. Any gear such as weapons, armor and accessories, differ to each class but is still accommodated for. PCs should begin play with gil to spend for each class separately but begins with what’s left of their starting classes gil. Rewards given out up to GM discretion, but be sure to accommodate for the extra classes.
Any gear besides normal clothing is attuned to each specific class. A PC with a fighter and black mage will have different gear attuned to each class, such as a longsword, breastplate and power wrist on his fighter, and a power staff and headband of intellect on his black mage. These automatically change and is covered below in “Changing classes” To attune gear to a specific class, the PC must simply be in the class and attune to their gear for 1 minute. When they change out of the class, they lose that gear until they change back. A piece of gear or item can only be attuned to 1 class at a time. Any attuned gear is still part of the PC’s inventory, but should be set aside and not be counted for when determining encumbrance. Other items other than worn gear or wieldable weapons cannot be attuned.
While choosing your classes, you are not subjected to alignment restrictions and any class can be chosen (at GM’s discretion.) A PC cannot have more than 1 of the same class in his list of available classes. Meaning you can choose an archetype for a class but cannot change it or have another of the same class of a different archetype. Each class cannot multi-class, but can prestige normally.
This system allows the PCs to change their classes, sometimes mid-combat, or sometimes at the beginning of the day on the type of play. When changing classes, it always provokes attacks of opportunity. The amount of time it takes depends on the type of play. When changing classes, they change into their new class with the classes attuned gear (weapons, armor and accessories) and keep any other items they had. Changing one’s class should be easy and seamless this way, moving from one sheet to the next. However. a few things also change depending, such as HP and MP.
All classes share the daily use limit of limit breaks and shares the same hero points. However, all other abilities are different on a class by class basis. When changing, the HP changes depending on the difference of the class’s max they were changing from. For example, a Fighter with 40 HP changes into a Black mage with 20 HP. The fighter had 20 more HP but was at max HP so he should be staying at 20. If reversed, he would go back up to 40 HP. If the fighter instead change to black mage while he had 35/40 HP, he would go into black mage with 15 HP instead. If he has 4/20 HP as a black mage and changes back to fighter, he instead goes into fighter with 24/40 HP. The same is done with Arcane Pool, Grit, Ki pool, Luck Pool, MP, Stamina pool, and any other ability that acts as a resource and has the same name. Changing ones class does not allow them to re-roll saves or skills based on have a different points.
Companions such as familiars and animal companions disappear when a class change is made and reappears when changing back to that class that is part of that class. Returning adjacent to the PC as they were when they left. Summoned creatures other than avatars must be re-summoned.
Any bonuses or penalties or status effects remain on the PC as normal. Bonuses or effects that are retained by a class’s abilities such as sustained modes are lost when changing class.
Lastly, the Curse status effect also prevents characters from changing their class for its duration and cannot change jobs while unconscious, helpless, or otherwise unable to act.
When changing classes, it is up to you and the PC how the change happens. Does the black mage blow up in fire and appear bursting from the ground with his greataxe as a fighter? Or does he simply flash with a blue light and appear different. How epic and thematic the change is should be described.
Types of Play
Simple right? You make multiple classes for the same character and just go. But how does this all go together? Below is a list of types of play determined by you and your players.
Simple Play: This type of play incurs the following rules:
- Changing Classes: You may change your class once per day after an 8 hour rest and 1 minute meditation out of combat.
- Class Slots: While this is up to GM discretion, the max allowed for this type of play should be 4 and begin play with 2.
Normal Play: This type of play incurs the following rules:
- Changing Classes: You may change your class anytime out of combat by spending 1 minute of meditation.
- Class Slots: While this is up to GM discretion, the max allowed for this type of play should be 6 and begin play with 3.
Ultima Play: This type of play incurs the following rules:
- Changing Classes: You may change your class anytime desired as a full round action.
- Class Slots: While this is up to GM discretion, the max allowed for this type of play should be unlimited and begin play with 3.
Custom Play: This type of play incurs the following rules:
- Changing Classes: GM Discretion.
- Class Slots: GM Discretion.
These types of plays should only be used as a guideline for your groups own desire and balances.
At first, it may seem overwhelming to have your players make multiple different classes for their characters. Ease them in. It is recommended you begin play with 2 classes and raise the class slots through levels. Furthermore, while its fine to allow them to choose any class to fill the slots, its not a bad idea to give your players all the same classes to work with or even a limited list to pull from. This can be determined by setting and story for each character or even selected at start of play. There should really be not limit on how you want to hand out classes.
The WoL system is not intended to be used with other optional systems. Such as Sub Jobs. But Hero Points are okay for use.
It is reasonable to expect a player who doesn’t want to use this optional system due to his high maintenance. That is fine. It is recommended for these PCs to be called Mortals and have their class limited off from other players using the WoL system. Furthermore, mortals should have a boost in place of ignoring this system. While this is up to GM discretion, here is some ideas on how to help a player not wanting to use this system.
- Increased Point Buy/Attributes. Such as a +10 to point buy or a +2 to all attributes.
- Extra Daily Uses of abilities. A +3 to all daily uses of abilities.
- Increased level. A +1 to +2 increase in level.
If these do not fit your needs, get with your player(s) to determine what would be best. Its impossible to truly balance a player or 2 with a single classes versus a few players with multiple classes.