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  • Writer's pictureKarsten

NPCs in TDE

Updated: Oct 16, 2022

When I use NPCs in TDE they come in a variety of flavours from the limited stat block as a combat or skill obstacle without even a name

„Guard, Perception 7 (12/12/12), Club 12/6 1D6+3 medium, PRO 3 SPI 1 TOU 2“

via some intermediate steps to a fully fledged character build almost like a PC.

Do you need to go that far? No, certainly not. An intermediate NPCs with a just little characterisation

„Alrik, the moody guard, inattentive (-1) as he is still brooding over his Dinnertime argument, open to bribes (15 silver to look the other way)“

will work fine for most occasions. And even a main villain, while needing some more details than his guard, does not need a full character sheet either.


So why would I do this and spend the extra effort? Because I can and I actually like tinkering characters and this way they even get played (too many ideas, too little time to play)


In the following weeks I will present a few examples that can be used in your campaign as villain or ally or just as random encounter.


My approach is always from two fronts: story and game mechanics.

Focussing for now on the mechanics side let me quickly explain how my approach differs from making a normal hero in TDE:


Character generation in TDE is aimed to create heroes of roughly equal strength at the same experience level, but for an NPC I might use more or less AP, depending how specialised or broad their skill should be. What I do follow however is the table of maximum values at hero creation (core p.39 except for the AP and maximum number of spells) and for a villain I tend to pick the maximum values 1-3 experience levels above the heroes, depending on how big an obstacle the villain should be. For allies, unless they are there to bring a skill the group is lacking I keep at a maximum similar to the heroes so they don’t outshine them.

For other NPCs I pick this based on their age (effectively using table p58 in reverse) and their role in Aventuria how experienced they should be. A Magister at a Guild Mage academy is probably in his mid 30s for example and should therefore be brilliant on his field.

The maximum 80 AP of advantages and disadvantages I might ignore as well.

Then I start spending AP until the build has everything it need for its role and it also matches the story I have prepared for it.



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