On Being Human in Tunnels and Trolls

Recently there’s been some discussion at the Trollhalla Inner Sanctum about the advantages and disadvantages of playing human characters in Tunnels and Trolls. I personally seldom play a human character, because I like having a couple of attributes that start out significantly higher than normal. Since I also prefer the magical types over brawny types, I’ve always played more elves than any other kindred, but have played my share of dwarves when in the mood to play the brawny types. So for me, Trollworld’s adventurer population consists primarily of elves and dwarves, with a smattering of other kindred thrown in occasionally to mix things up. Though humans are the baseline, they aren’t the predominant kindred for adventurers in my games.

It might not even be the case that humans outnumber other kindred as NPCs in the solitaires I’ve played. Tunnels and Trolls solo designers like to provide variety in their adventures, and as a player I like it that way. I suspect most other players like a good variety as well. So while there are indeed human NPCs to be found, there are a goodly number of NPCs encountered who are of non-human and monstrous kindred. (The stats for occurrences of each kindred as NPCs in games I’ve played would of course depend on exactly which solos I’ve played, and which paths I’ve taken in those solos. The stats for the game at large, however, would require someone to go through every single T&T solo available for play today and tally the number of times each kindred appears in an NPC role. Any volunteers?) Continue reading