What do you personally interpret an "adventurer's guild" as?

What do you personally interpret an "adventurer's guild" as?

Me personally: An "adventurer's guild" is simply a polite term for "mercenaries". Above and beyond all else, every member is good at KILLING in some fashion. Each individual might bring additional skills to the table such as stealth, diplomacy, investigation, and... something else besides killing. But above and beyond all else: They are good at combat. And so they get hired to do dangerous tasks that can be overcome through VIOLENCE or other measures. But the main trait that gives all "adventurers" a common bond is the ability to beat the shit out of other people. They are the fantasy equivalent of a PMC (Private Military Contractors).

I think adventurer companies/guilds are a lot less glamorous than you think. Mostly they get paid to plunder ancient ruins. They could be sacred sites or somesuch, right? Dirty jobs. But not even in like, a cool way. Just kind of sleazy contract-chasers without a lot of scruples.

The Hunter's Assocation from HunterxHunter is a good example. It has it's hands in many markets both legal and illegal. It works on various national levels promising to keep super powered hobos in check and offer them a way to make money that doesnt involve steam rolling countries and if shit goes bad they can be called upon to deal with it (i.e the Chimera Ant infestation).

The initiation into the HA is brutal by itself with killing being met with an mere inconvient consequence of having to wait till next year to participate unless killing your opponent is part of the test so they weed out the week and push their ideology on the strong to at least get them on their page and if they don't comply they kill them.

I'm not sure if this is supposed to be bait or not, but I will offer the following

1. Being "mercenaries" takes on a different role in a fantasy world where good and evil are physical, measurable parts of the universe and your opponents are objectively evil.

2. The service of a hired adventurer is to give solutions to problems, which can be by violent or nonviolent means depending on the players. I'd argue that the main trait giving adventurers a common bond are competence at something (including fighting) and willingness to put themselves at risk.

You can't argue the economic and social need for a well-organized system of adventurers in most D&D settings. Everywhere you look there's some horrible thing nesting in a dank cave, just waiting and and swelling in eldritch power. Eventually it's going to rise up and turn the nearest town into a mess of mangled corpses, and that's just the best case scenario.

Any civil authority who doesn't have his head up his ass is going to support an adventurer's guild. All he needs is a system of scouts who can go sniff out the nearest vampire's lair, and the bloodthirsty sellswords do the rest. Doubly useful in that it comes without all the hassle of maintaining a military force and gives the wandering bands of heavily-armed sociopaths an acceptable target for their violent outbursts. Look at this guy in pic related. How exactly is he going to contribute to the local economy without going out and plundering the forgotten wealth of a haunted catacomb?

In my campaign Adventurer's guilds are common, and have varying amounts of power.

In the town which the PCs started out in, the guild was given political authority by a baron. Thus, the guild leader acted as a governor and the rest of the guild acted as the guard, superseding anything the town leadership declared, and making the town guard impotent. They made a profit through taxation, and calling any service from the guard an "adventure," requiring a large payment for protection.

In other areas, the adventurer's guild had no political power, and thus they acted as mercenaries, and in one isolated case, a charity group. In yet another situation, the guild became so powerful that nearby gentry payed them respect. Think Griffith's mercenary band from Berserk.

Honestly, a good-natured adventurer's guild should only exist in the smallest possible scale. Any power would mean they would be hired by the rich to do their bidding at a moments notice.

This. Being a Hunter/Adventurer is just being a badass with the credentials to back it up, and access to resources, opportunities, and trust that those without said credential wouldn't be afforded. The guild understands that its members are an independently minded lot so they don't try to force anything on them unless absolutely necessary. You can be an adventurer without sighing on with the guild, it's just harder.

A centralized support hub structure for servicing small teams of a kind of implicit "hero" caste or class.
It is a convenient way to quickly do away with any logistical matters for settings with a gameist bend that value streamlined experience over a more organic world.

I think of it as a network of parties, sharing mission contracts or information on treasure hidden in dangerous areas.

One group gets rich off a dragon's hall, buys a place to hang out and store their fancy adventure trophies, but they still go out every so often to save the day if need be, to collect more treasure, or just for funsies. They may be in contact with some of their old party members that split off, or just know some other adventurer's, and so they share leads on adventures that they might not have the time to go on. The network gains some renown for completing so many quests, (since they have multiple parties completing them) that the amount of missions they get contracted for increases. The owners expand to meet the demand and hire out level 1 scrubs for certain contracts, and if the scrubs survive, they become members and the network grows into a guild from there.

>You can be an adventurer without sighing on with the guild, it's just harder.

Well, unless you're doing something that everyone is not cool with but the people hiring you are cool with the fact that you're willing to do it for/with them.

I imagine that's where there are several layers of dealing with the criminal underworld. The "legit" side is basically acting as bodyguards. You're not doing anything illegal by protecting the life of a guy who does illegal shit but when you start doing illegal things yourself (stealing, assassinations, etc) then you might be stepping on toes that will get other people called on you.


I'm fine with the idea, but for the games I run adventurers have no guild. They're just freelance mercs who aren't tied to any location.

Guilds are typically location based, either tied to a particular nation or a city, so a guild of adventurers simply wouldn't work unless there was enough of them in an area that it made sense.

>What do you personally interpret an "adventurer's guild" as?

Mercenary Company.

>Me personally: An "adventurer's guild" is simply a polite term for "mercenaries".
This is almost historically true. The "Compagnia di ventura", or "Companies of Adventure" were mercenary companies. I suppose it sounds better than "hired killers".

I'd let her quivering palm me.

>What do you personally interpret an "adventurer's guild" as?
Outside D&D bullshit? Community of criminals, thieves, conmen, graverobbers and bandits. It doesn't include pimps, drugdealers and such who rely on other people's skills. Fences and corrupt officials are guild administration. Adventurer's guild or gentlemen's club is what they call it.

Shut up upside-down satan.

>1. Being "mercenaries" takes on a different role in a fantasy world where good and evil are physical, measurable parts of the universe and your opponents are objectively evil.
The system doesn't objectively state what's good or bad so how can it REALLY be that objective?

I guess its a pretty important question, isn't user?

What are you willing to fight for?
What are you willing to KILL for?

Mercs and bodyguards, sure......but also problem solvers.

Yeah, you could send the knights to deal with that goblic shaman fucking shit up in the eastern part of the kingdom, but that just admits you allowed the goblin threat there to go unchecked for far too long. Better to pay some random mercs some bounty for killing goblins, all well and common and good. Oh, but try searching around THIS PART OF THE WOODS HERE first, I heard a rumor or something that it might have a FEW more gobos than usual.

>Yeah, you could send the knights to deal with that goblic shaman fucking shit up in the eastern part of the kingdom, but that just admits you allowed the goblin threat there to go unchecked for far too long
It just admits that you fucking care about your kingdom

The king DOESN'T care about the kingdom! The goblin shamans have been running amok for years and only now does he send his knights! This is clearly simply a paltry showing of force to keep the peoples of the Eastern Hills in line with the threat of rescinding the knights if they do not agree to greater taxes!

Or he could send in 6 hobos and have them kill everything off and not make a big deal out of it......

It could really be anything.
I prefer not having those kind of guilds, though. All kind of regular guilds would be interested in hiring adventurers.

Alas, and adventurers guild could be as glamerous as a middle man between the quest giver and the adventurers, or as grim and dirty as a bunch of shitty guilds who lay claim to certain stretches of land and murder any non-member adventurers who do business in their zone.

A place where people gather to molest little children all across the uncharted world.


In an old campaign, we founded and ran an Adventurers guild. It started with the 6 founding members and 3 old ex-adventurers that ran the business side of it. After a few years if playing, we had turned it into the first corporation, built a massive central base in the capital with hundreds of adventurers doing daily missions all over the world using a magical transit network we had built and bankrolled by a noble/sorcerer/ex-adventurer acting as an investor and company face. There were other competing adventurer guilds and companies forming after our initial success.
The game focus slowly shifted from poor murderhobos scrounging for food money to running a multinational company with the founding PC's doing occasional shit that required their epic level talents.

Murderhobos anonymous

You have a shitty, cliché and obtuse way of understanding the word "Adventure"

What's yours?

In my campaign, Adventurers are a completely separate class of person. A soldier can train for 2 years and become stronger, but if he has what is termed as the "Adventurer's Seed" active, he could make the same gains by simply going out and killing goblins for a few days.

They are stronger, more puissant, grow at a faster rate, sometimes many times more charismatic, potent, or simply better than the average person.

In a sense, they're very much like Sparks from Girl Genius. There doesn't seem to be any sort of rhyme or reason to who can become an Adventurer, or how they "activate", with many studies being conducted. There is a slight correlation of hereditary nature, but nothing conclusive.

Because of the boon and threat they represent, many nations are starting to create their own organized teams of Adventurer Task Forces to respond to major threats, especially other Adventurers.

The Adventurer's Guild, and the Thieves' Guild (which is a cheeky derisive name given to them which they now endorse, since they focus on own retrieval and dungeon looting) both organize Adventurers and act as a liason for jobs and a sort of leash, to help mitigate collateral damage and try to extend the often woefully short expected lifespan of its members.

Um... not to shit in your chips, OP, but adventurers guilds were literally a historical thing, and they weren't mercs. They were explorer traders.

>Thieves' Guild (which is a cheeky derisive name given to them which they now endorse, since they focus on own retrieval and dungeon looting)
I like this. I'm using it for my next game.

The Adventure's Guild is, essentially a mercenary guild, with the understanding that not all adventurers are necessarily warriors or killers. Some might be archaeologists, or linguists.

Whether you need someone to kill rats in your basement, or bodyguards to protect a caravan or someone to translate an obscure scroll or disable the traps in an old tomb, you'll probably start looking for help at the Adventurer's Guild.


It makes me think of the stalkers, honestly. Scavengers, Trespassers, Adventurers, Loners, Killers, Explorers, Robbers. Basically, just a group of individuals who pull dangerous odd-jobs like bounty hunting or monster killing, but are also willing to do dirty work like robbing people or murdering specific targets. The hero's guild in Fable also comes to mind, because they take both good and evil jobs and there's always a hero willing to do them.