With tonight’s Critical Hit recording looming (watch for live tweets of intentionally cryptic and maddening vague-osity) I am engaging in my usual pregame ritual: Memorizing Torq’s character sheet, the better to forget everything on it in the heat of combat and/or RP.  Being an old-school comic book fan, I’m also wondering what build would best encapsulate a D&D version of the Martian Manhunter.  Indeed, it would seem that many of my fave-rave characters, from John Stewart to the Black Knight to Alpha Flight’s Puck, would be easily converted into PCs without even stretching the rules.  (Remind me to tell you about the round that I played featuring blatant knock-offs of Popeye, Kevin Nash, Blackie Lawless and Xena.)

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) rolls 7 dice, discards the lowest total, and commences to min/maxing, y’all, asking: What character from the worlds of fiction would be simplest to shamelessly rip-off adapt into standard D&D?  Which would be the coolest?


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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. SmarkingOut Adam on

    From the worlds of fiction? Simplest? I’d have to say Drizzt. Or maybe Tanis Half-Elven. As far as most interesting, I’d sure like to play a game as Colossus, where I could turn into an impervious tank, but would weigh a ton and would be vulnerable when not prepared.

  2. I would say a pokémon trainer. I think you can have a shaman calling his/her spirit companion by using a pokéball-like device and selecting attacks that generate from the companion… I’m liking this idea.. to the character builder!

  3. I had a guy do a shameless rip of of Kratos from God of War. He would use lots of flavor to describe the fact he just hit someone in the face. Then during Skill Challenges he just went nuts.

  4. For my money the better pokemon trainer would be a wizard or artificer focused on familiar based spells (look for Dragon articles in the archive of Wizards site), but the Shaman can does make for a great Ash Ketchum who has a smaller pool of go-to pokemon.

    Batman is easy to do with the rogue or ranger class and a generous DM that let’s you carry more equipment than encumbrance rules would make possible.

    Flight is harder to come by in 4th ed at lower levels, but I have played a non-flying Human Torch using a Gensai wizard/sorcerer hybrid (his stats were less than optimal but I made it work)

    But in my opinion the coolest character is Captain America as a Fighter or Warlord chucking his shield at people.

  5. I think making Roland from The Dark Tower series would be pretty cool. You would have to somehow make him a ranger with the ability to dual wield repeating crossbows.

  6. Practically anyone from the Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. DnD is heavily influenced by Tolkien’s works. That we even have Halflings is because of Hobbits, thought Halflings have significantly change a good deal since their first conceptualization.

    Conan the Barbarian would also be easy to play as well with a variety of different builds. (Nevermind that there is a Conan RPG out there.)

    Of special note, I remember that Rodrigo already effectively conceptualized builds for Green Arrow as a Ranger and Nightcrawler as some kind of wizard with a lot of teleporting effects. He also did the protagonists for the Wizard of Oz, making them badasses in the process.

  7. Back when my old DM made a campaign loosely inspired around Marvel’s Infinity Gauntlet, he made the comment that with a little creativity, he found most Marvel characters quite easy to translate to D&D, but with a few exceptions like Batman, DC characters were a bit harder. That didn’t stop him from creating a Green Lantern Ring inspired item for me, though (he made everyone something based on our favorite characters as a Christmas gift, such as Cap’s shield and Thor’s hammer).

    I’d honestly like to see some sort of Super Sentai/Kamen Rider character sheets built up. If you ignore the giant robot aspect, pretty much everything else could probably be worked up within the rules and create a working team. I think Magiranger would be easiest to translate since they are based around magic.

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