Archetype: Private Eye Profession in Alana | World Anvil

Archetype: Private Eye

Work in progress!
ORC License
Slightly NSFW!
Private Eye by Tillerz using MidJourney
Private Eyes are skilled detectives who are adept at solving a wide range of mysteries. They might be called upon to find missing persons, uncover hidden secrets, or untangle complex webs of deception. Their services are often sought by nobles, merchants, or even common folk facing dire dilemmas. They are skilled at remaining unnoticed as they observe suspects, gather information, and follow leads.   Private eyes frequently maintain a web of confidants and informants, including street urchins, beggars, innkeepers, and tavern proprietors, and at times, even well-placed officials who lend their support to the detective's inquiries. These trusted allies serve as wellsprings of valuable information, safe havens for discreet observation, or sources of diverse resources.   Role in the Party: Private Eyes are the party's problem solvers and truth seekers, guiding them through the intricate web of secrets and mysteries they encounter on their adventures, by utilizing their skills and resources (like contacts).  
  • Affinity: Earth
  • Earning Skill: Perception
  • Primary Characteristics: Initiative, Fellowship

Building the Backstory

  These questions don't have to get answered and written down in detail, they are just there to make your think about your hero, but the answers can help the gamemaster to set up connections and stories related to your character.  
  • What motivated you to become a private eye, and how did you acquire your investigative skills?
  • Describe a particularly challenging case you've worked on. What made it difficult, and how did you ultimately solve it?
  • What is your code of ethics when it comes to taking cases or handling information? Are there lines you won't cross?
  • Have you ever encountered a nemesis or a recurring antagonist in your investigations? What's the story behind your rivalry?
  • How do you maintain your independence and integrity in a world filled with corruption and deceit?


A character begins with all the abilities and features listed in the Novice tier. If there are multiple choices available, the unselected options can be acquired as the character advances through gameplay. Upon reaching specific milestones, the character can advance to the next tier. However, certain traits from those higher tiers must be earned through effort and accomplishment.   Legend: Companion Gadget Mutation Potion Scroll Spell Talent

Tier: Novice

  • Status: Silver 1
  • Skills: Bribery, Charm, Consume Alcohol, Evaluate, Gossip, Lore (Cults), Lore (Local), Melee, Perception, Pick Lock, Secret Signs, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, Track
  • Talents: Alley Cat, Break and Enter, Lip Reading, Read/Write
  • Trappings: Lantern, Lamp Oil, Parchment/sheet, Writing Kit, Lock Picks, Flask

Tier: Adept

  • Status: Silver 2
  • Talents: Argumentative, Dirty Fighting, Master of Disguise, Shadow
  • Trappings: Leather Jack, Hand Weapon, Magnifying Glass

Tier: Master

  • Status: Silver 3
  • Talents: Briber, Carouser, Disarm, Nose for Trouble
  • Trappings: Assistant, Spyglass

Tier: Legend

  • Status: Silver 5
  • Talents: In-fighter, Iron Jaw, Tower of Memories
  • Trappings: Office

Cover image: article-header-enquirer by Tillerz using MidJourney


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Dec 13, 2023 08:13

One would think that an investigator might have a talent for persuasion, something I don't see per se, in the description. I'd also expect they would have Contacts as a resource, maybe instead of Companions. Nice descriptions in all the character archetypes.

Dec 13, 2023 19:42 by Tillerz

Well, they have Charm and Gossip skill. And they get "Argumentative" talent, which gives you a bonus and/or more successes on charm rolls. Also later they can get the talent Bribery, which goes also into that direction. I haven't thought about all the details yet when a character gets what. The contacts they get automatically just by doing their things. I want the player do that work and not just do a "there you have 3 contacts".   My idea about the "Novice Tier" is that it is only used for the introduction into the game, like only the first 2-3 sessions, then the PCs are already next tier. It shall be something like a "Session Zero in 3 sessions", where the player actually build up the archetype(s) they are playing. So they MIGHT have contacts, but the first few sessions will define who they are. :)

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