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Jayngfet
2016-05-07, 02:06 AM
So a lot of stuff gets thrown around about adventurers in settings, and just to be curious, what does one take the term "adventurer" to mean as a general term in-setting?

That is to say, assume you have a generic adventurer. No grand destinies, no epic war, no big bads. People call them an adventurer, and they call themselves an adventurer. What's the expectation of their average day like? How often do they work? Do they move around a lot? What kind of generic "tools of the trade" are there, not in the sense of "what do players always carry around" but "what would this human realistically carry on their person going to their regular job". To reiterate, we're talking about regular working people. Not guys who conspicuously go around and every single town has a giant problem only they can solve because that's how the plot works.

I'm not going to say what I think, at least right away, just because this is something I want to get the undiluted other answers of people on.

GorinichSerpant
2016-05-07, 02:22 AM
By their definition, adventurers are not "regular working people". They can be, but not when adventuring. Adventurers are those who go on adventurers, they aren't necessarily going around solving big problems or have epic destinies, but they do put themselves in peril. The most mundane I can think of at the top of my head are criminals, smugglers and bounty hunters. Conquistadores are also a good example of adventurers, they were hired to go risk the perils of the New World for fame and fortune.

Kami2awa
2016-05-07, 02:31 AM
Historically, there have been a lot of people who fit the pattern of "adventurer". Explorers, mountain climbers, knights errant, mercenaries, missionaries, even Victorian animal collectors like Wallace.

I'd greatly recommend reading some true or fictionalised accounts of their travels, such as Wallace's travels in The Malay Archipelago. A lot of them are out of copyright and can be legally obtained for nothing or next to nothing.

Gastronomie
2016-05-07, 02:45 AM
I assume we're talking about "Adventurers in D&D".

Well, let's think. Adventurers are generally people who travel around, explore relics, and fight monsters as a living. This assumes that the governmental forces of that world are too weak to hold a sustainable army, as in the case with many medieval countries in the real world - if the army worked enough and had enough power to protect the people, the villages wouldn't need to protect themselves from goblin raids.

In medieval eras, armies were generally created by drafting from the people, and only in special times of need. The country lacked the economical power to give them enough food, so they allowed the soldiers to freely plunder from the enemies, which ironically became a motivation for the people to join the army. Stealing goods and food, killing and raping as the soldiers wanted - it was an ugly form of stress relieval for the people back then, but the army was far from an organized military force.

...Realize something? This is the exact same thing as what a lot of adventurers do. Plundering from the enemies as much as they want. And just like the Christians plundered freely from the Muslims in the Crusade, the adventurers plunder freely from the goblins and orcs and such in their adventures. The only difference here is that the goblins and orcs are actually malevolent, but either way, there's a similarity in the structure here.

Okay, back on topic: the key to sustaining a large, well-civilized army is "commerce". In the European era of absolute monarchism, the whole reason the king was able to become so strong was because transportation routes greatly developed, allowing the countries to collect lots of tax - and with tax, the country can finally get to pay the wages for tens of thousands of soldiers. But is this what is described in most D&D campaigns? I don't think so. If there's ever a caravan in D&D, 99% of the time it's raided by goblins, and the player characters rush in to the scene to find the bodyguard soldiers killed, with goblins running about everywhere. In medieval Europe, bandits were enough of a reason for the stagnation of commerial business - what if there were these orcs and hobgoblins and dragons everywhere? I don't think travelling is a very safe experience.

It's safe to say that in most D&D settings, there's not enough of an army to actually protect the people, at least unless it's an extreme emergency. I also think it's sort of a miracle that humans are still a prominent force in the world, with all these mind-dazzling dragons and beholders and mindflayers and stuff everywhere. But luckily for the humans, these powerful monsters almost never band together. They are generally solitary or have only a dungeon's worth of henchmen. Which means that if there's a skilled squad of professional monster-hunters, they can be easily raided.

And that's where the adventurers come in. The adventurers defeat the threats that the government can't take care of. They make roads safer, they liberate villages from dragons, and they save whole regions from invasions of the Drow. They also carry stories of far-away lands, lands that most villagers will never even see in their entire lives, confined to their villages for fear of what lurks in the forests. And another thing that can't be missed is that they discover and excavate relics from long-lost magical empires, meaning they can sometimes uncover wonderful technology, technology that can perhaps help the people prosper, their lives get better. Adventurers are crucial in a world where there's so many monsters, and yet the kingdom isn't strong enough to ward them all off.

But I believe that this "era of adventurers" will not last for long.

There's two paths from here. The first path is that the adventurers start to acclaim political power and start their own organization that emcompasses both military and political influence, much like in the case of the samurai of medieval Japan. Perhaps add Napoleon - adventurers are admired by their people, so if they wish to take the throne, a lot of the people'll nod to it.
Getting tied to political power is going to be especially prominent in the case with Sorcerer characters, as they have "powerful bloodlines", inheritable powers, meaning they will most likely grow to become aristocratic families in due time. Perhaps the same with Wizards as well, since they can pass on their knowledge, and Warlocks, since they have all these ties to otherworldly powers. Anyhow, adventurers become the rulers of mankind.

The second path is that with the roads safer, commerce starts to prosper. People become freed from the fear of monster raids, and with their curiosity stimulated by the tales of the adventurers, they set off to the world. Tax is collected. Official soldiers can get to grow in number. And an absolute monarchy is born. In which case, adventurers lose their jobs.

Which is better? I honestly dunno. Either way, this is what I think about these grand, dramatic "adventurers".

goto124
2016-05-07, 03:05 AM
Tomb robbers.

5ColouredWalker
2016-05-07, 03:47 AM
For me, the most literal definition would be those that travel in unknown/unexplored/unclaimed territory for whatever reason strikes their fancy.

In DnD, 'unclaimed' would be stretched to 'Not claimed by friends/people powerful enough to send us fleeing', and the reason is normally 'phat lootz' which is then used for X, or 'Because we were asked to in exchange for phat lootz/other which we will then do X with'.

A professional adventurer would be anyone who does the above repeatedly as the primary source of income, and in DnD these people quickly become movers and shakers or bodies in ditches, or one then the other. Wandering Hero's may be adventurers (Going from town to town, intermittently stopping in other areas because they were asked to kill/other something/one.) but they are not necessarily adventurers, but in DnD the two are so synonymous that it doesn't matter most of the time.

Comet
2016-05-07, 04:21 AM
Old D&D:
Homeless people who wander the countryside risking life for coin, who might eventually become millionaires and lords of the land.

Current D&D:
Travellers who wander the countryside fighting monsters for morals, philosophy or a great quest. They might eventually become superstars who venture out into other planes of existence to fight gods and demons.

jinjitsu
2016-05-07, 04:56 AM
Not guys who conspicuously go around and every single town has a giant problem only they can solve because that's how the plot works.

Assuming a natural, organically-developing world rather than one dictated by a game master, it's true that not every town is going to have a giant problem that can only be solved by an adventuring party; but eventually almost every town IS going to have a giant problem, and adventurers are the folks who show up to take care of them. The problem that muddies our perception of adventurers is that the world of the average campaign hinges on the actions of the adventurers, rather than the more natural situation of the adventurers' actions hinging on the happenings in the world.

In a given campaign, there will probably be an adventure or two that's not a world-changing destiny affair, but rather a simple bounty hunt or search for a magic artifact or some such. These are the bread and butter of adventurers: usually simple but always dangerous jobs that common people can't handle and the military/archmages/clergy are too preoccupied to deal with.

Fable Wright
2016-05-07, 04:58 AM
Let's see...

In general, a professional adventurer is more or less someone who raids dangerous areas for the resources to sustain themselves or further their goals. This could be many different types of areas: Forgotten tombs, ancient libraries, underground labyrinths full of dangerous creatures and valuable materials, hunters of rare monsters in foreign jungles, or even pirates/conquistadors/privateers.

For such a varied set of professions, there are going to be relatively few commonalities. However, for the most common categories, you can usually recognize them by their equipment. They will, for example, always carry a rope and torches. They will carry at least a sidearm at all times, wear armor over or under their daily clothing, and their average work packs will be large and heavy, containing food and often cooking supplies. They are hardy folk, carrying such heavy equipment over long distances; they will almost never have a weak constitution. They travel from place to place most of the time, as once a dungeon complex is fully explored, there's no reason to stick around; however, extraordinarily large complexes can attract semi-permanent adventuring camps.

Their average day on the job, of course, depends on their adventuring specialty, but usually they'll be delving into low-monster-density areas. Usually, they'll be crossing crevasses, collapsed floors, being on guard for traps magical and mundane, and spend most of their time identifying and carefully collecting the most valuable loot per pound that they can manage. They'll be on guard for monsters, of course, but those are usually lower level than the adventurers, and shouldn't provide too much trouble as long as they stay on guard.

Logosloki
2016-05-07, 08:18 AM
I view adventurer as more of a meta-game title to what we the players are. It isn't necessarily going to come up in game and is more of an out of character catch-all so you don't have to list what you are every time. I would describe adventurer as the 'non-commissioned" explorer party (writ? what writ? we're all good barbarian people who have no time for words on paper), where you are together for your various reasons and may or may not have a clear goal.

In setting you as a party are going to be viewed as "a bunch of ethnically and racially diverse of usually sapient beings". Depending on the parties demeanour and the presence or absence of various gear and retainers the setting's various groups will react to the party (merchants, entertainers, missionaries, sellswords, envoys oh my!) or non-react.

BWR
2016-05-07, 08:31 AM
In some Mystaran countries it's a legal (and taxed) profession.

Darth Ultron
2016-05-07, 10:08 AM
Like anything an ''adventurer'' means a lot of things, depending on who you ask.


To most common folk an adventurer is a small time hero that generally wanders about doing good things.

Though to some an adventure is a ''lazy bum'' or ''criminal'' or ''alien''.


Typically an adventure is seen as someone who can do something ''special'', that common folks can't do.


A lot like a hunter from Supernatural.

Mastikator
2016-05-07, 11:09 AM
Someone who seeks unusual experiences, takes big risks to explore strange new worlds and meet strange new people. In modern term I would consider astronauts, field scientists (like the ones who explore caves, or the dry valleys in the south pole) and people who travel across the world adventurers.

For fantasy RPG just replace anything scientific with magical. For scifi RPG just add space stuff.

JAL_1138
2016-05-07, 11:19 AM
The term "murderhobo" springs to mind...

Thrudd
2016-05-07, 11:36 AM
"Adventurer" is a euphemism for someone who eschews more conventional professions and instead seeks their fortune by hunting for treasure or knowledge that remains undiscovered, probably due to being in a dangerous or normally inaccessible locale.
Maybe they also seek excitement, maybe they are just looking for one big find that will make them a fortune, maybe they are dedicated to uncovering mysteries for the sake of it. But there is no doubt that everything they do has the potential to make them, or someone, very rich, and that there is considerable risk involved.

The normal equipment of an adventurer will be traveling gear that is appropriate for whatever region they find themselves in. Big packs, pack animals, tents and bedding, probably rock climbing gear, fire starting and light sources, extra clothes for cold weather or rain, rope, various tools associated with survival - hatchets or machetes, knives, hammer, rock pick, spade, spikes. Food rations appropriate for travel, dried, pickled, easily packed and carried. A few weapons for self defense and hunting, again of whatever is appropriate for the setting and region. Maps and compass, if such a thing exists, and journal and writing implements of some form to record their findings. Normally accompanied by porters, guides, animal handlers, in some combination. If terrain allows it, some type of vehicle- a cart, wagon, whatever.

Comet
2016-05-07, 11:46 AM
In some Mystaran countries it's a legal (and taxed) profession.

That reminds me: Glorantha has quite a few instances of discussion on what it means to be an adventurer. The GM guide I have has an entire page dedicated to discussing this. In some areas, like the Big Rubble in Pavis, it's a legal profession sponsored by the government. In some places it's really, really not. Most Gloranthan cultures are really focused on community, family and belonging so people who wander the world and ally themselves with whoever is available is beyond bizarre to them.

There's a fun scene in King of Dragon Pass, for instance, where a foreign human, a dragon-man, a duck and a troll wander into your peaceful village out of the blue. They're decked out in magic gear, have scars all over and keep asking for something called "an inn" in a poor attempt at tradespeak. One of the options available to you is to freak out and send your best warriors to drive these freaks out or kill them and loot their artifacts for your own use.

Frozen_Feet
2016-05-07, 02:42 PM
I've said it before, will say it again: "adventurer" is a broad euphenism for various risk-taking people who travel between places, who always fall in one or several more specific cafegories if you think of it for a moment.

When working within the law, they are explorers, merchants, soldiers, private investigators, travellers, privateers, archeologists, crusaders etc.

When working outside the law, they are invaders, thieves, mercenaries, spies, trespassers, pirates, grave-robbers, cultists etc.

Honest Tiefling
2016-05-07, 03:13 PM
The word outlaw comes to mind. They don't have a clan or village to swear allegiance to, and tend to wander around areas where laws don't apply. Some are just like Robin Hood and help, but most...Don't.

Cluedrew
2016-05-07, 05:41 PM
Adventurer can mean a lot of things. For instance I think it is a synonym for Player Character in more than a few contexts.

In a generic in-world way I think it would mean "mercenary consultant". The mercenary part is obvious, they work for money and they usual fight for work. In addition they have few permanent commitments, which separates them from soldiers. The consultant part is to imply they are specialists, an average mercenary gets called in when you need more bodies, an adventure gets called in when you need something special.

A slightly more optimistic view would be "professional hero". Someone who actively seeks out opportunities to be heroic. They may ask for some pay, but they will rarely demand it.

There are others (see this thread) but I think those are two big ones.

Wardog
2016-05-07, 06:00 PM
When working within the law, they are explorers, merchants, soldiers, private investigators, travellers, privateers, archeologists, crusaders etc.

In certain settings, you could also add "princes" and "rulers" to that.

There are several Greek myths where a prince, on coming of age, was basically told by his father "Go on an adventure and kill some monsters, to prove you are worthy of inheriting my kingdom". Or consider the story of Odysseus, where a king ended up going on a whole series of adventures.

And for a real life example: it was considered a duty of the kings of Assyria to hunt and kill lions, in order to protect their people from them. Here (https://faceintheblue.wordpress.com/2009/12/01/assyrian-lion-hunting/)are some examples of the carvings depicting various hunts. Note in particular the image of Ashurnasirpal II holding a lion by the throat while he stabs it.

Honest Tiefling
2016-05-07, 06:11 PM
In certain settings, you could also add "princes" and "rulers" to that.

There are several Greek myths where a prince, on coming of age, was basically told by his father "Go on an adventure and kill some monsters, to prove you are worthy of inheriting my kingdom". Or consider the story of Odysseus, where a king ended up going on a whole series of adventures.

I am not so sure that counts, or is a moral about not being a smart-***, given that the only reason he went on the Odyssey is that he made a rather stupidly binding promise, Palamedes revealed he wasn't insane, and then he had to go annoy a god.

...You know what? I take that back. That series of events sound just like adventurers. Even the cross-dressing that Achilles did sounds like something they'd do to get around a plot-hook.


And for a real life example: it was considered a duty of the kings of Assyria to hunt and kill lions, in order to protect their people from them. Here (https://faceintheblue.wordpress.com/2009/12/01/assyrian-lion-hunting/)are some examples of the carvings depicting various hunts. Note in particular the image of Ashurnasirpal II holding a lion by the throat while he stabs it.

Huh. That does seem pretty awesome. Clearly the royalty of today could learn something! (Of course, lions are endangered so we'd have to use robots. Teach those synthetic upstarts whose boss!)

GorinichSerpant
2016-05-07, 09:15 PM
In certain settings, you could also add "princes" and "rulers" to that.

There are several Greek myths where a prince, on coming of age, was basically told by his father "Go on an adventure and kill some monsters, to prove you are worthy of inheriting my kingdom". Or consider the story of Odysseus, where a king ended up going on a whole series of adventures.

And for a real life example: it was considered a duty of the kings of Assyria to hunt and kill lions, in order to protect their people from them. Here (https://faceintheblue.wordpress.com/2009/12/01/assyrian-lion-hunting/)are some examples of the carvings depicting various hunts. Note in particular the image of Ashurnasirpal II holding a lion by the throat while he stabs it.

In various ancient societies, the line went down threw the women and the King would be a competent guy who shows up and proves he's worthy of the title. It worked like that during some time in Italy and when legends from then got to medieval Europe it was assumed that the heroes who arrived in town were princes from somewhere else.

RazorChain
2016-05-07, 09:50 PM
1. a person who has, enjoys, or seeks adventures.
2. a seeker of fortune in daring enterprises; soldier of fortune.
3. a person who undertakes great commercial risk; speculator.
4. a person who seeks power, wealth, or social rank by unscrupulous or questionable means

tombowings
2016-05-08, 02:46 PM
We'll the first thing that popped into my mind was the Guardians of the Galaxy movie. Those guys are adventurers - trying to balance life on the edge, getting rich, and not ended up dead - and if you happen to save the world while doing it, more power to you.

Most of the time, though, everyone just wants you in jail so they can get back to their normal, everyday lives.

GrayDeath
2016-05-08, 05:04 PM
What are Adventurers?

Simple: Powerful Unemployed.

Fri
2016-05-08, 06:01 PM
Depending on the setting.

In a more peaceful world, for me adventurer are basically explorers. This is exemplared in the JRPG Grandia (the first one) in PSX, where in first half of the game, there aren't any much epic story. The setting is basically a world in industrial revolution, and in the last days of adventurers. The main character is the son of a famous adventurer (explorer) who went missing exploring the new world, and grandson of another famous explorer who discovered some mountain or the other. But people say the age of adventure is in the past, because everything had been discovered, and people say they've find the edge of the world.

Early in the game, the main character went to visit the society of adventurer which his father used to be a member of, but found that it had turned to be a tourist society basically, where people pay to visit famous ruins and camp in the (relatively safe) wilderness.

The antagonist of the first half is a private army group who excavate ruins for some reason, and if not for the clash of need between this antagonist group and the main character, the private army is actually a well-respected and liked group in the setting. Basically they fund the main character's hometown and employ people in (civilian) industries.

It's basically what I thought how adventurers would work in a more realistic or modern setting I guess. Adventurers would pack normal explorer stuffs basically. Tent, ration, tools, and also weapons, since there are hostile beasts and monsters and native inhabitant of the land you're "discovering." When you "discover" new things you could write about them, collect smaller things, or claim them for the name of your country or whatever.

Another variation that I like is adventurer in peaceful post-apocalyptic world, which I like to use in my setting. Basically the world is a cozy post-apocalyptic setting. There are ruins showing a great civilization in the past, but the current age is more-or-less peaceful. Adventurers dive into those ruins looking for ancient magical or technological artifacts, and the ruins is might be dangerous because of crumbling environment, ancient security devices or traps, or rival adventurers and bandits.

In the game Rockman Dash, adventurers mostly dig for crystals that the ancient civilization use for power source, to be reused in the current society. In the manga Desert Punk, adventurers dig for ancient artifacts, not to be used directly, but to be used as template for the current engineer and smiths. It's mentioned how eventhough in the setting they use what seem to be 20th-21st century weaponries and technologies, they're actually in much less quality than the actual thing we use now, because they have more limited means and tools. Also, the richest person in the setting is an ex-adventurer businessman who found a working hard-drive from pre-collapse (our) civilization, and managed to restore some data from it. And the thing that give him most profit is said to be the expy of milton bradley's game of life boardgame. I guess in post-apocalypse, people would like to reminisence about the old days by playing that game.

Of course in less peaceful setting, lots of adventurers would be mercenaries I guess, eventhough there will still be explorers and journalists.

Knaight
2016-05-09, 03:49 AM
I actually like the standard dictionary definition (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/adventurer) here, with the addendum that dangerous and exciting generally means traveling into the unknown - for the traveler at least, and quite possibly for anyone.

It's a pretty broad category, but there are commonalities. Looking to the questions in the original post:

That is to say, assume you have a generic adventurer. No grand destinies, no epic war, no big bads. People call them an adventurer, and they call themselves an adventurer. What's the expectation of their average day like? How often do they work? Do they move around a lot? What kind of generic "tools of the trade" are there, not in the sense of "what do players always carry around" but "what would this human realistically carry on their person going to their regular job". To reiterate, we're talking about regular working people. Not guys who conspicuously go around and every single town has a giant problem only they can solve because that's how the plot works.

To start with, the regular working people thing has to get dropped to some extent. Maybe being an adventurer is an actual profession, maybe it's an elaborate hobby, in either case it isn't a typical job. There's going to be adrenaline junkies, there's going to be people with extreme wanderlust, there's going to be people with a thirst for discovery, etc. The destined hero thing can vanish, that adventurers are outside the norm really can't. Onto the questions themselves.

What's the expectation of their average day like? For the vast majority of adventurers, I'd expect some sort of life with two very distinct parts. When not adventuring, they will have pretty typical days. Drifters and similar will have typical days associated with non-adventuring travel, these typical days are likely to be a bit rest heavy, and there are some other differences, but I'd expect typical days. When out adventuring that changes dramatically. Consider real examples of sailors, people in militaries, and other jobs which have a deployment like structure.

How often do they work?Probably pretty often. The expensive hobby adventurers are likely to have lighter loads, but for those who have it as a job, I'd expect it to eat most of their time. Jobs tend to do that.

Do they move around a lot?At the very least, adventuring is a highly mobile profession/hobby. On top of that, the people it attracts aren't exactly homebodies. I would expect some cases where there is a permanent residence that sees fairly little use, but stays in the same place for a long time. Some adventurers would likely highly value that stability. A lot of others would likely either have no permanent residence or move frequently.

What kind of generic "tools of the trade" are there, not in the sense of "what do players always carry around" but "what would this human realistically carry on their person going to their regular job? It depends heavily on the specifics. There's the matter of environment (a South Pole expedition packs very differently than an Amazon expedition), what the situation is with regards to vehicles and pack animals, so on and so forth. With that said, a pack of some sort would be common in essentially every case, some sort of water container is similarly broadly useful, and then there's a large collection of specific equipment. Look at historical military equipment, specifically everything other than weapons and armor. There tends to be a lot of it. While this gets reduced pretty dramatically with sufficiently large vehicles (something like a full blown ship, and not a canoe, dogsled, jeep or similar). On top of that, there's the matter of the setting. Different periods of history would have very different stuff available. Add in fantasy, sci-fi, or pulp elements and it gets really messy.

sktarq
2016-05-09, 08:22 PM
Aggressive opportunist usually dealing in Short term mercenary work or collection of valuables (in terms of hunting, looting, etc) with a key factor of changing things up. They don't go after one thing and become specialists.

PC adventurers are generally in the high risk ones.

Earthwalker
2016-05-10, 09:55 AM
In my last DnD campaign that included adventurers they were a class below the mercantile class but above the peasant class. (Erm thatís class as in social standing not in terms of DnD classes)

The campaign was in one city that had broken free of a feudal system and was free. The class structure was still in place. A personís freedom was still tied to their social class and changing class was not easily done.

The classless saw them as dangerous but as a possible way out of their position.
The peasant class mainly saw them as criminals.
The mercantile class saw them as a useful deniable resource.
The Upper / Ruling class like the peasants saw them as criminals.

Its worth noting the PC in the campaign were playing members of the mercantile class.

raygun goth
2016-05-10, 01:18 PM
Licensed murderhobos with a complex culture.

In my home setting, they've had this problem for years - magicians and warriors of ridiculous prowess don't really fit into "normal" society, so they wander in and out of borders without regard for the law, so the international community cooked up a ruling body. If these powerful assets are going to just drift in the wind, then they could at least be doing a service.

This is complicated by the presence of "Zones of Isolation," or "zoeys." Adventurers are known by many names, such as crashers, isos, isolators, zoners, zeds, and others. Zoeys are bigger on the inside than they are on the outside - they make mapping things hell. They can extend backwards or forwards through time, unreliably, and they tend to spawn monsters or worse. Standing militaries can take care of some of it, but to go inside, that takes a special kind of crazy and a special kind of power. The nature of magic in the setting prevents large-scale organizations from taking control of the kinds of magic isos wield (it's complicated), so they pay them to take care of issues that crop up.

Like how Mommy might have hired a smelly hobo to come into your room at night and take care of the closet monster problem.

They've got a language based on their clothing and tattoos and self-inflicted scars, the ability to muscle into police investigations, and the ability to cross borders with questionable arsenals.

Segev
2016-05-10, 01:57 PM
But I believe that this "era of adventurers" will not last for long.

There's two paths from here. The first path is that the adventurers start to acclaim political power and start their own organization that emcompasses both military and political influence, much like in the case of the samurai of medieval Japan. Perhaps add Napoleon - adventurers are admired by their people, so if they wish to take the throne, a lot of the people'll nod to it.
Getting tied to political power is going to be especially prominent in the case with Sorcerer characters, as they have "powerful bloodlines", inheritable powers, meaning they will most likely grow to become aristocratic families in due time. Perhaps the same with Wizards as well, since they can pass on their knowledge, and Warlocks, since they have all these ties to otherworldly powers. Anyhow, adventurers become the rulers of mankind.

The second path is that with the roads safer, commerce starts to prosper. People become freed from the fear of monster raids, and with their curiosity stimulated by the tales of the adventurers, they set off to the world. Tax is collected. Official soldiers can get to grow in number. And an absolute monarchy is born. In which case, adventurers lose their jobs.

Which is better? I honestly dunno. Either way, this is what I think about these grand, dramatic "adventurers".
The biggest reason that "the era of adventure" is seen as a thing of the past in modern-day Earth is that we just don't have nearly as much "unknown" to explore, anymore. In antiquity, adventurers were great heroes who brought civilization (as measured by their home culture) to barbaric surroundings. They were often demigods in their own rights, and became kings because they were one-man armies. In medieval times, Rome had fallen, leaving behind an ancient and powerful but now vanished empire, sometimes with technologies that seemed magical, sometimes just with great wealth to be found. Adventurers are thoroughly discussed in the post from which the quote above comes.

And he's right, as these "adventurers" became more successful, they became the landed nobility and the kingdoms grew stronger. And set their sights on colonies. And thus adventurers became explorers and colonists, and the sheriffs and warriors of colonial towns. They became pirates and privateers, exploring the fast unknown lands and seas.

As the colonies grew to be settled powers in their own rights, the adventurers became archaeologists and hunters, exploring wild places and meeting new cultures.

We haven't, in truth, entirely run out of those sorts of places. Deep in the three southern continents lie a lot of cultures we haven't really "met" yet, and there are doubtless vistas even our satelites have not yet adequately explored. But the "unexplored" places have grown smaller, and the frontiers far from our minds. "Adventurers" these days exist in war-torn lands, because those are all that remain barbarous. They're mercenaries more than explorers.

IF we ever reach for the stars with effective means of manned exploration, we'll probably see a resurgence of "adventurer" archetypes. Explorers of new worlds, colonists, and deep-space types. Where law's reach is thinnest is where they tend to thrive. Not necessarily because they're inherently lawless, but because that is where their brand of force is most needed and least disruptive. In civilized lands, they can't be "adventurers" without being "criminals" (and generally "thugs"). In uncivilized lands, they can be their own law and enforcement and still, generally, be good people, because there won't be good people trying to stop them for breaking the peace.

Even Lawful adventurers need a lack of immediate authority to be proper adventurers.

goto124
2016-05-11, 01:20 AM
Space adventurers? Space adventurers!

Madbox
2016-05-11, 02:32 AM
An adventurer is someone who deliberately and willingly takes part in exceptionally dangerous work, of varied nature, as a freelancer.

A traveling merchant? Not an adventurer. Risk of bandit raids isn't dangerous enough, and they consistently do the same sort of work.

Mercenary? Not an adventurer. While it is a dangerous enough job, they always do the same thing.

Guy who fights off some horrid monster to protect his village? Not an adventurer. He was protecting his village. He didn't choose to do it, he was forced to.

Someone who started as 3, but then went on to do 1 and 2? Yeah, that's an adventurer.