ISTJs are typically thought of as…
Your 4-member party model (Si-Te-Fi-Ne)
This post is done in the 4-member party system. It splits each of your cognitive functions into a character within your mental wiring. Think of it as your “adventuring party” that you have with you as you take on life’s dragons and quests.
Your “stack” (Si-Te-Fi-Ne) is essentially the development level of the characters in your group.
The dominant function is the Hero. Level 30. It’s you and your heroic abilities.
The auxiliary function is the Companion. Almost level 30. It’s your “best buddy” and the one that’ll carry you to greatness when you can’t walk.
The tertiary function is the Newbie. Level 10. Don’t get too distracted by its playful and tempting allure. You need to balance the power between the Companion and the Newbie – if you don’t, you’ll miss out on powerful tactics.
The inferior / aspirational function is the Escort. Level 3 / AI. Help finish its quests for epic rewards.
This page uses information and backstories from the characters. You may want to read those before continuing. I’ll link below on each character’s name, share the Hero’s story, and also summarize the other stories.
Si – Silemem’ri the Guardian
If you are an ISTJ, your desire to create stability through comparing the present to the past is what leads you. You love using routine practice and hard work to build strong foundations for your life. You seek familiarity and loyalty. Your Si side is the Hero. You are a guardian – an Elf warrior.
For those of us who are not ISTJ, let’s look at the dynamics of the group with Silemem’ri Larethdal in charge.
On a whim, Silemem’ri suggested that his brother, Kaelar, join him in search of adventure and glory in the war. They entered as last minute recruits, despite not being properly trained for combat. Several weeks in, their scouting group was overrun by Orcs. Only Silemem’ri was able to escape as his brother distracted them and fought to his death.
Silemem’ri returned home, alone and sobbing. His mother died of grief after hearing of Kaelar’s death. His father, having lost his wife and eldest son, died shortly after.
Silemem’ri chose to join the sentinels to protect the kingdom and overcome his regret. After Kaelar’s death, Silemem’ri became stoic and disconnected from much of the present world. He cares not for fantasy or lawlessness. Hardened by war and tragedy, he became extremely focused on improving his shield usage and swordsmanship. In times of peace, he trained day in, day out. Through constant repetition, he built on his foundations. He methodically absorbed every piece of information possible connected to his fighting style. He also re-framed the younger, wilder recruits and instructed them on proper form and technique.
In the Fifth Great Battle, he was hit with a sudden insight. It almost seemed as though he knew the underlying structure of the battle. His memories solidified with great detail. Through comparing the past to the present, events would play out in his mind in vivid detail. They gave him almost tangible visions of what would come. This database expanded his strategy through expectations and predictions of the future.
After the war, he embarked on a journey to bring justice to the Orcs and to maintain Elven traditions.
In summary, Silemem’ri uses the wisdom of past experiences and preparation to advance skillfully. He uses his internal database to compare details of an object or situation to similar ones. Introverted Sensing isn’t focused on embracing the pure object itself, but rather the personalized impression of it – the archetype built from years of experience. Silemem’ri has trained hard to learn the perfect form of fighting with a shield and sword. He’s guided by rules and tradition. His goal is to bring justice to the Orcs and maintain the ways of his people. Silemem’ri has control, so he is going to be directing the group towards his goals using stable and reliable methods.
Te – Tel the Geomancer
Tel, the geomancer (Dwarf mage), is here to give a sense of direction. Tel uses effective spells to influence the world and makes things happen. He literally moves things around and harnesses the environment to reach goals. You can compare past experiences all you want, but you eventually need direction and new data. Without Tel, the group will be stuck with only the impressions of the past.
You and Tel form a realistic and “traditional” pair. This duo is also getting things done. Don’t worry about that. But your goal isn’t to shake things up, but rather embrace what has proven to be reliable. Introverted Sensing, in general, is focused on laws, societal institutions, and rules because they work. They’ve been used before and continue to exist because they can stand the test of time. Being a Dwarf, Tel is the one who pushes to interact with the outer world most often. He takes the data that you give him, charts it out and helps it come to fruition.
You’re responsible, cautious, and aware of how important hindsight is. Tel provides action, followthrough, and structured plans to the group’s future quests.
Fi – Findion the Priest
Neither guardians nor geomancers heal. Introverted Sensing does offer a sense of loyalty and community-based awareness, however. Tanks aren’t spec’d this way to protect themselves, and they don’t quest alone, after all. Findion is here to give you personalized and moral support – he’s your pocket healer.
Findion helps show you which roles you should hold the closest to your heart. He gives you a clear understanding of what is true to yourself. He also illuminates why you should stand up against some rules that could cause harm to others. Basically, he helps you stay congruent and check with your conscience before acting.
Looking the other way when someone obviously has no money and is stealing food is an example of how Findion could influence the ISTJ group. “It is against the law and not acceptable,” would be the response if Findion was not in the picture or was ignored.
If Findion gets more precedent over Tel, the group will lose its ability to interact with the real world. You cannot grow if you’re stuck in the Elven world reliving the past over and over again through reverie. Your experiences and convictions alone don’t save the world. You need a way to explore outward. Si-Fi together would build a world in which whatever isn’t known and stable is considered harmful or bad. Their comfort zone would be extremely tiny and inflexible.
You can see how this could severely inhibit the adventurers. Let the Newbie grow into a full-fledged character but make sure he doesn’t push the Companion out. The balance of Si-Te-Fi together will allow the group to do what’s right, when it’s right.
Ne – Nes the Gunslinger
Last up we have Nes, the gunslinger (Dwarf hunter), as the Escort. Nes opposes the introspective nature that you value so highly. He has no desire to build on the inner world of past experiences. Nes wants to explore everywhere and collect as many trophies as he can. The second he gathers an understanding of the territory, he wants to move on to the next. New is good, known is bad.
When you are at the end of your lifebar, Nes gains control of the group. At this time, you begin to feel that everything you’ve worked to understand is pointless. No matter how much you know, there are too many possibilities that you cannot foresee. This brings you immense stress and makes him feel incomplete.
If used beneficially, you’ll find ways to let Nes run free. Nes will be able to help the group gather new experiences. With Nes, you’ll be able to connect patterns of past experiences to build a larger, more expansive memory-bank.
As a guardian, you want to prepare for what will happen. But you cannot grow without leaving the comfort of your town and exploring the world. Tel and Nes push you to do exactly that. Findion will support you in your decisions and give you the conviction to believe in yourself and handle whatever situation comes up.
Te gives structure to push forward and Ne can show you the beauty of embracing new possibilities. Fi makes sure that your actions are authentic to yourself. As always, the more balanced the classes, the more impact player can have on the world.
Also, check out the solo model!