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As a DM I always try my best to include unique characters in my adventures. I wanted to use a lunatic character who has completely lost his mind as a sort of minor plot hook to introduce the players to a new part of the world. How do you think I could make the NPC believable, without revealing much about the mysterious place that he is from? What are some tips for role playing a character like this? What sort of voices could I use so that it is obvious to the party that he is insane?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Purple Monkey, Thomas Jacobs, Wibbs, SevenSidedDie Dec 30 '15 at 19:41

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    \$\begingroup\$ @AverageUnknown Preventing new answers is what closing is for. Your answer in a comment has been removed. \$\endgroup\$ – SevenSidedDie Dec 30 '15 at 20:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ Heaven forbid we have interesting questions. Why is this opinion-based, while How do I role-play as a dragon? is not? (Also How do I roleplay getting used to violence? How do I roleplay someone more intelligent than I am? How can I play dumb? Why are those all allowed to be exist but this not? \$\endgroup\$ – Dronz Dec 30 '15 at 22:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Do you mean that the character appears insane, or that the character has an actual mental illness? \$\endgroup\$ – Shalvenay Dec 30 '15 at 23:17
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, I'm afraid this isn't answerable in its current state, especially since "I want to act like a madman" is clearly not linked to any real mental disorder and is instead a generic "pretend to be all fish-kissing wacky like they do in them B movies and games". \$\endgroup\$ – mxyzplk Jan 1 '16 at 6:57
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I've had to do this before and have found it very difficult. As a result, instead of role playing the NPC, I've just described the NPC like, "While talking to you, he tends to frequently stray off-topic, speaking in several different languages, and referencing people and things that are not nearby. After a few minutes, it is obvious to all of you that this man is utterly insane. While it is difficult to decipher his train of thought, you hear him utter the phrase "[insert mysterious place's name]" several times."

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    \$\begingroup\$ That is probably the best way of playing the character. I do have some important phrases written out that I could insert into a description like that. That way the players wouldn't be able to communicate much with him either, and I only have to pull off a ridiculous voice very briefly. Thank you! \$\endgroup\$ – Mr. Universe Dec 30 '15 at 19:31
  • \$\begingroup\$ Great! Glad I could help! \$\endgroup\$ – DM John Dec 30 '15 at 19:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ I'd say this is reasonable if the GM doesn't feel up to roleplaying the madman, say if his understanding of the nature of his character's insanity, or his roleplaying skills seem inadequate. However I think it can be much more interesting when a skilled GM has an idea of what way the character is insane, and roleplays appropriately. \$\endgroup\$ – Dronz Dec 31 '15 at 0:20

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