AD&D Classes as Cliches
In this post (and this one), Andrew Boswell (bottlesorter for you folks who hang out on the Mythic yahoo group) makes the connection between old-school AD&D (Oriental Adventures) classes and Risus cliches. He seems to be making the intuitive leap that you don't really need a skill system in D&D if you treat the character's class as a Risus cliche (with all that entails). I couldn't agree more. I especially like his explicit listing of classes and the corresponding Risus-style penumbra of abilities for each. He doesn't specify the resolution mechanic , though I trust it involves the character's level and a 3d6 or d20 roll. I'll be curious to see how his line of thinking develops. I used to be of the mind you had to have a skill system in D&D or else something would be missing. After playing Risus, I see that is no longer the case.
Note, I might still allow for a "background" cliche (like "Farmer" or "Blacksmith"), to both give character a little history and to provide for more non-adventuring skills. But this isn't strictly necessary. Most classes can be renamed to encompass vastly different types of non-fighting/non-spell-casting abilities.