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Questions tagged [npc]

For questions about NPCs (non-player characters). NPC refers to any character in an RPG whose decisions and actions are handled by the game master (or a designated assistant) rather than by a player.

12
votes
1answer
211 views

Does 3d6 per attribute represent the entire (human) population or just adventurers?

In more "old school" D&D editions charterer creation required the generation of character attributes by rolling 3d6 for each one of the six (most commonly) attributes (Strength, Dexterity, ...
4
votes
2answers
238 views

Designing 'Gandalf' NPCs [closed]

I'm designing an NPC that is meant to be a manager/mentor to the players. Contrary to the archetype I've just invoked by mentioning Gandalf, she isn't some divine force incarnate-she's just somewhat ...
9
votes
1answer
403 views

How can I kill a tough druid NPC off-scene for the sake of the plot? [closed]

In a campaign I made myself, there is an 8th-level Druid NPC (good guy) that have an item that I want the bad guys to steal (killing him in the way, for dramatization). My main concern is that he ...
1
vote
2answers
285 views

PCs enraged high level NPC that is vital to the story and could TPK them [closed]

The 3 PCs enraged the main quest giver in my campaign by the PCs threatening to kill him and doing things to try to get more money out of him. They are level 1 and could easily get TPK'ed by this NPC. ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Can a dragon be stuck looking like a human?

I was planning in a campaign to feature an NPC, who is actually a metallic dragon that got stuck in human form, this being thanks to a curse that was placed on her. She is very much wanting this ...
40
votes
7answers
6k views

How can I handle players killing my NPC outside of combat?

My players tried to capture one of my bosses (they didn't know it was a boss) and after a few rolls they succeeded. They started to interrogate him (the NPC is a human) and after obtaining the ...
22
votes
1answer
2k views

Can the Knight give infinite Leadership dice for 1 minute?

I got a Knight servant from a Deck of Many Things, and am looking at his Leadership ability. For 1 minute, the knight can utter a special command or warning whenever a nonhostile creature that it ...
8
votes
1answer
275 views

How can high-CR (20+) NPCs be created?

I remember in earlier editions villains and NPCs sometimes had astronomical levels (Elminster, etc. all are 20+ Spellcasters). Currently I am making a campaign where the major NPCs are all Legendary ...
13
votes
5answers
3k views

How to make a Nightcrawler-esque NPC villain for my players?

I am currently DMing a D&D 5e campaign for a party of 4, and I wanted a villain with a teleporting ability similar to Nightcrawler, from X-Men/Marvel Comics. I have run into an issue. The main ...
1
vote
1answer
174 views

How to create a powerful boss fusion of an artificial dragon and a lich?

I am currently thinking how to build a sheet for a powerful villain in my campaign. This creature was created by an ancient people as a way to control artificial dragons and to kill powerful real ...
1
vote
0answers
102 views

What is the best way for players to create their own NPCs to aid them in their adventures? [closed]

Has anyone tried allowing players to have NPCs of their own? For example, a Wizard may want to employ a warrior style body guard. How would a player go about creating their own NPC? If they can ...
1
vote
1answer
345 views

How do I calculate the HP of a level 20 Barbarian NPC with the Tough feat? [closed]

I'm a first time DM and I'm struggling with sorting out HP for a half orc NPC. I rolled his HP and he has the tough feat that I gave him at level 4, so I know, at max, he gets 40 to his HP, but I'm ...
19
votes
6answers
2k views

Does a player know if their Intimidation attempt worked?

I am going to be a first-time DM for my group. While I was planning the first session, I just thought about my players interrogating (torturing) a creature. If a character tries an Intimidation (or ...
5
votes
0answers
280 views

The party killed this important NPC right away: now what? [closed]

My level 2 party of 5 killed in Greenest. What do I do? I have thought about just running it normally but that won't work, because they each got 3,000xp making them level 4. This majorly upsets the ...
23
votes
3answers
2k views

Can any creature other than PCs use Two-Weapon Fighting?

The rule on Two-Weapon Fighting (PHB, page 195) states: When you take the Attack action and attack with a light melee weapon that you're holding in one hand, you can use a bonus action to attack ...
29
votes
6answers
3k views

What's the difference between an NPC and a GMPC?

I was reading this question, and while I do agree on the answers stating a GM should avoid having a character of his own as it's hard to properly play it, I don't really see what the line between that ...
7
votes
1answer
589 views

Can the new Sidekicks system from UA be applied to creatures you create?

In Unearthed Arcana: Sidekicks, the prerequisites for a sidekick template to be applied to a creature are: Its challenge rating must be 1 or lower. The two of you must be friends. If you ...
4
votes
0answers
134 views

How can our party forcibly change the alignment of an NPC? [closed]

I can’t really explain why as it would require a deep, deep delve into our campaign’s lore, but our party needs to find the way to change the alignment of an NPC. He’s a homebrew nephilim that was ...
4
votes
1answer
213 views

Is there a rule that allows me to fuse 2 NPCs?

I'm running Rise of the Runelords and, throughout the encounters, several major foes managed to run away. Specifically, Nualia Tobyn (an Aasimar Cleric 4/Fighter 2) and Lucrecia (a Lamia Matriarch). ...
34
votes
6answers
4k views

How can I make an NPC useful without overshadowing the player characters?

I play DnD 5th and I find my group often has many NPCs accompanying them, like 4 players and 4 NPCs. Most have some form of tie to the group, but few are actually as useful as the group members, as ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

Does a NPC wizard know the spells in their stat block or spell book?

In Waterdeep: Dragon Heist, there is an encounter with an apprentice wizard. Apprentice Wizard in the appendix has a stat block with a spell list, however the adventure text states that this ...
23
votes
3answers
3k views

How can I make conversations with NPCs more succinct?

IMPORTANT: don't just read the selected answer, all of the answers to this question provide good techniques to apply in different scenarios when it comes to conversations with NPCs. I chose the one ...
0
votes
1answer
105 views

What prestige classes will make a cc sorcerer less killable? [closed]

I created a tainted sorceress npc as a friend of one PC. Shes a human sorcerer 4/tainted sorcerer 2 specializing in crowd control and nonlethal damage spells. She is neutral, but because of taint her ...
4
votes
4answers
1k views

Is there a way to detect an NPC's class without them knowing that I'm detecting it?

The description of the detect thoughts spell says that when attempting to probe deeper into a target's mind (which I assume would be required to detect their class): the target knows that you are ...
2
votes
2answers
193 views

Which creatures have Negative Energy Affinity (Ex)*

I've been looking into creating a corporeal, Good NPC with Negative Energy Affinity but I'm not mad keen on them being a Dhampir. Are there any other pre existing options or am I better off ...
16
votes
6answers
584 views

How to show emotions differently for different NPCs?

I'm the DM of the group. This is more of an acting question rather than one about mechanics. As my group and I have progressed through our game I've introduced several recurring characters to it. ...
11
votes
1answer
549 views

What kind of ooze does the Pudding King transform into?

In Out of the Abyss, the stats of the Pudding King include the following action (page 233): However, it does not mention what kind of ooze he transforms into. What kind of ooze does the Pudding King ...
-2
votes
1answer
496 views

Can a PC protected by copyright be used by the DM without player permission? [closed]

A player owns the copyright on their character as long as that character meets copyright criteria and was featured in something before being in the campaign, such as a backstory or drawing. This has ...
11
votes
4answers
515 views

How can I force good NPC reactions to a bad player with Good Stuff?

So, I'm running an Amber Diceless game. One of the characters took 21 points of Good Stuff at the beginning, because they want to save up to 25 to buy Advanced Pattern Imprint after the game starts. ...
6
votes
2answers
753 views

Is Drizzt an NPC in Storm King's Thunder?

In episode 34 of the Dice, Camera, Action! D&D stream, the legendary elf Drizzt makes an appearance. Is this a custom plotline that Chris Perkins added, or is the drow really one of the NPCs that ...
7
votes
2answers
742 views

Leveling up NPCs in Out of The Abyss

I am about to run Out of the Abyss for the first time and was wondering about how I should manage the NPCs that escape with the party from Velkenvelve. My goals for them are as follows: the NPCs... ...
2
votes
3answers
238 views

How can I level up or use my NPC army?

In my current campaign, I’ve managed to secure myself a fairly large kingdom, with an army of over 10,000 level 10s at my disposal. This would be incredibly useful if we weren’t in a fairly epic level ...
33
votes
3answers
4k views

As a DM, do I have to declare the actions that NPCs ready?

A question arose when I was reading the PHB's section about "Actions in Combat: Ready" that reads: Sometimes you want to get the jump on a foe or wait for a particular circumstance before you act. ...
40
votes
6answers
10k views

Players constantly capture enemies and question them, how to deal with it?

I'm running a campaign for five sixth level players and the bard has hypnotic pattern. Whenever the party runs into any fights with enemies who can speak, they always find some way of making an enemy ...
33
votes
6answers
4k views

Does having a recurring NPC ally incur the same risks as having a GMPC?

I'm brand new to table-top RPGs and I am my group's DM (D&D 5e). I've been brainstorming ideas to work into our next campaign after LMoP, and I'm liking the idea of recurrent NPCs who are on their ...
2
votes
0answers
191 views

How do I deal with all the NPCs in Out of the Abyss? [closed]

Most combat tips were to either give them to players or make a background scene where they would be fighting. But how do I keep track of the progression of the living NPC and loot share, etc?
3
votes
0answers
155 views

Character build- Baron Harkonnen [closed]

I want to build an NPC villain inspired from the Dune character, Baron Vladimir Harkonen. Said character is an extremely sadistic, cruel, corrupt noble who is ugly and so fat he uses a flying chair to ...
20
votes
3answers
3k views

What is the “+ 75” in these NPC hit point stats?

I see NPCs with stat blocks that have "Hit Points: 142 (15d8 + 75)" (for example). I was wondering where the "+ 75" (in this case) came from?
9
votes
1answer
297 views

How should I handle signalling & costuming for an “ascended mook”?

I am a crew member with a LARP system. When I'm playing a minor NPC who isn't very important to the wider plot, I have some fairly standard and basic kit that I just throw on. If I'm a labourer, I've ...
25
votes
7answers
5k views

How can I introduce an “enemy” faction NPC without players killing them?

I have a campaign I'm running that heavily involves cultists working to save the planes in a kind of "we live here too and would prefer not to die" motivation. There is a cultist that one of the ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

What are the stages of influencing Hostile NPCs?

Backstory I want to make myself a homebrew XP system to better deal with how to reward experience points to my players for roleplay, spellcasting, and combat respectively, with a separate XP track ...
65
votes
12answers
15k views

How do I indicate to my players that an NPC is no longer useful and that they should move on?

I am a rather new DM, still learning stuff. So I have noticed that my characters tend to talk too much with the NPCs, trying to get a lot of information, and probably even trying to 'cheat', thinking ...
0
votes
1answer
213 views

Tips for flirting with NPC [closed]

I play a character that's currently in love with an NPC, but it's not working. I wanted some hints about what to do, and what to say (gestures, actions, etc.) to make him fall for me. Apparently he ...
28
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I tell how many damage dice to roll for an NPCs cantrip?

For PCs, cantrip damage increases with their total character level and not their class level (see this question for reference). However, NPCs do not normally have class levels, and their stat blocks ...
6
votes
2answers
197 views

How can I get PCs to care about NPCs in trouble?

I am running a game where I would prefer the characters personally feel invested in some NPCs and want to help them. I can near force the mission on them as "will of the gods," but I'd rather not. ...
8
votes
1answer
176 views

Can NPCs have fight-or-flight reactions to intimidation instead of just submitting?

I was DMing the second session of my first game a few weeks ago and I started thinking about how I should have handled a particular situation. We had 3 PCs being assisted by a cleric NPC; this same ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

How to make deception by NPCs work in an engaging manner

We are playing in a world with a certain degree of realism. For me, this includes deception. Deception can be found anywhere: Making a small and probably inconsequential lie to make yourself look ...
17
votes
10answers
11k views

How to create a villain for level 1 players

I want to build a cool devil overlord as a villain for a group of three level 1 PCs. How would I go about making a villain who's more powerful than them without going overboard? Should I be scared to ...
10
votes
2answers
902 views

Curse of Strahd - NPC Backstory Contradiction?

This question includes NPC lore spoilers for Curse of Strahd, proceed at your own risk. While running Curse of Strahd and prepping ahead, I have happened upon a rather glaring contradiction in the ...
27
votes
7answers
7k views

Curing NPC phobia

This is a another version of Curing trap phobia, but as you can guess, the party is now using Insight checks on all NPCs they meet! I've cut down encounters with unnecessary NPCs, so every NPC they ...