The Domestic Cat Test

Long ago, when 1st Edition AD&D was young, and point-buy character generation was a gleam in game designer’s eyes, I played in a Chivalry & Sorcery campaign run by a good friend, called Keith.

Chivalry & Sorcery, like many roleplaying games of the time – not that there were that many – was a game where it was easy to generate a useless character by rolling dice. A number of the players objected to the characters they wound up with, and Keith had a fun answer that was a mini-game in itself.

“So, you don’t want to play that character because you think it’s useless, right?”

“That’s it. I want a decent character.”

“Then I’ll make you a deal. Your character shall fight a domestic cat, unarmed, in mortal combat. If the cat wins, your character dies and you can roll up another one. If your character wins, it’s good enough and you must play it.”

Most people went for it. Your C&S domestic cat was a mean creature. Nine attacks per turn. Dodged like crazy. I wouldn’t have taken it on willingly with a character I did think was good enough to play, not without armour, weapons, and other party members as backup.

Blessed thing won more than half the fights.

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