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Episode Twelve: Delve into Twelve!

We call them Extras, Mooks, Brutes, and Faceless Hordes. These are the NPCs that you need to make up on the spot, or who only serve a single, specific purpose. This episode is all about bringing NPCs to life: putting moxy in your mooks, buttering up your brutes, elevating your extras, and other ways to alliterate your allies!

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Episode Twelve: NPCs

FAVORITE GAMES OF THE WEEK

Necropolis 2350
Edge
Savage Worlds

CURRENTLY PLAYING

Playing Star Wars D6, but switching to Savage Worlds. We actually go into our first session of the game as well.

SHOUTOUTS

Our Fans are awesome!

Robin’s Laws of Good Game Mastering has some great advice on this topic.

It came to my notice that Triple Ace Games makes one game that is not for Savage Worlds, namely: All for One: Régime Diabolique which uses Ubiquity.

MUSIC SECTION

“Roll the Dice, Make my Day” (Mustard Men)
“High Horse” (The Jim Jones Revue
“Happy Gabber” (madonkey)
“Livin’ on the Edge” (Aerosmith)

GAMES MENTIONED

Tough Justice
Courtesans: Sex & Society
7th Sea
The Canting Crew
Castles & Crusades
GURPS 4th Edition
GURPS Banestorm: Abydos
Hunter: The Vigil
Qin: The Warring States
Scion
Star Wars D6
GURPS Technomancer
GURPS Celtic Myth
Low Life

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  • In every WoD game I ran I wrote Fat Larry the arms dealer into the game somehow.

    Yes even Requiem to Rome!

    Ian Warner

    September 13, 2011

  • The most memorable NPC I’ve ever made was Gleeb, the extremely cowardly Space Jellyfish starship pilot in a Metabarons campaign. Gleeb was afraid of everything from sharp edges to random strangers, but he was one of the best pilots in the galaxy, and the PC just absolutely adored him.

    pointyman2000

    September 13, 2011

  • Edge also features some of the best female-friendly portrayals of armor in the artwork. No boobage windows, no S&M outfits from what I can tell.

    pointyman2000

    September 13, 2011

  • When I have a laptop available during GMing I usually have some extra pictures ready in case an improv NPC that is becoming a bit more important than anticipated needs a portrait. Without the laptop that’s not an option since I have to print everything in advance.
    The subject of NPC pics would also have been interesting to address. For some settings it’s easier to find appropriate pics on the web than for others. I used to make little drawings, but that’s really way too time-consuming and my drawing skills aren’t exactly phenomenal.

    3rik

    September 17, 2011

  • When two or more NPCs are having a discussion that PCs only overhear and don’t take part in, I usually describe the conversation rather than acting it out in-character. I also find switching to description helpful when you experience difficulty pulling off an accent, speech impediment or mannerism.

    3rik

    September 17, 2011

  • Minor nitpick: Triple Ace Games has at least one game that’s not Savage Worlds, namely All For One: Régime Diabolique, which runs on the Ubiquity system.

    3rik

    September 17, 2011

  • I was unaware, and I apologize to Triple Ace games. I’ll add that to the show notes!

    joewolz

    September 18, 2011

  • So glad to hear that I’m not the only one who keeps a few handy npc fodder around for filling out combat. When I backwards plan a campaign (btw that will be blog #2) I always plan some “extras” to use my film school background. I’m still very much loving EVERYTHING you guys are doing!

    Nick

    September 21, 2011

  • I tend to have one major Npc for a recurring villain. But I do enjoy Joe’s concept of letting the players decide who will be coming back. The fact that Joe even knows what thieves cant is, let alone how to use it just cements my love of your podcast. I will also take this time to say how great it was to see you guys at Gen Con.

    Nick

    September 21, 2011

  • Nicky I will take this time to point out something you may enjoy. Whenever I run a game in the world that I based your first game with me in I always include Tera, or A’unshir. My female gamers very much enjoy Tera and I try to run her as close to the way you played her. I think the general feeling in the group toward A’unshir is that he’s a bit of a dick and very aloof. I think I’ve nailed Neal’s spirit in A’unshir.

    Nick

    September 21, 2011