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11

The most important aspect of an NPC is presenting a persona that the players can interact with realistically and consistently. Stats will not do that - they'll help and give you guideance on what a character can and can't do, and for some GMs (and possibly systems, but that's debatable) that is essential - but it's not required. Believe me, I generated ...


7

I almost invariably run sandbox games, what the players do is entirely up to them and the plot advances through NPCs no matter if they interact or not! Before organising a big sandbox campaign where there are strategic targets I'd advise the following: Talk to the players; see what they want from the game and enjoy. Do they like exploring? Fights? ...


7

Sardathrion and Rob cover most of my NPC generation process, but sometimes (most notably when the party discovers one I haven't planned for) I just consider them a +X NPC. For example, in AFMBE I might make a random Normie citizen a +2 NPC - their rolls are typically just the roll +2 unless I decide it's a skill they should have. So John Doe over there is ...


6

Let him see the changes, let him know they are real, don't say why I wouldn't straight up lie about a roll as you mentioned in the question, I would however let him be aware that the rolls and results are not what he would expect. You want him to notice that something isn't quite what he expects. Feel free to be enigmatic about why though. You can also ...


5

Like a Potemkin village, all my NPCs are but a few sentences on a card. Note that the card can be digital in the form of a wiki entry, a markdown/LaTeX file, etc... or it could be a paper card. The sentences themselves describe: The general appearance, the general skill set, and one or more interesting background elements. That is it. So, for example: ...


5

I'd suggest to use monster types/appearances as indicators of where the PCs are. Terrain can be useful, especially if you make it appropriate to the monsters, but the players will tend to focus more when you're describing stuff that's threatening or fighting them. In my largest (fantasy) sandbox, I had a safe area in the middle, then surrounded it with ...


4

There's a rule for calculating Secondary Attributes based off Attributes that have a zero or negative value. It seems reasonable—although doesn't appear explicitly, as far as I can tell—to do the same for damage when multiplying by the Strength Attribute. All Flesh Must Be Eaten (Revised), page 33 Some characters have Attributes of 0 or even in the ...


3

This will probably attract many down votes but here goes... The Illusion of freewill: Everything is a card board cut-out before the PCs arrive there. Only once they have been somewhere does that location becomes more than a cut-out. So, now you can concentrate on meta data of what you want to happen in the game. If you have an encounter planned that ...



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