Hi all and thanks for dropping in for tonights writeup around saying goodbye to a character or NPC.
Now occasionally we will have a PC die and how we handle that generally is based on the circumstances around said perishing. But what about NPCs?
Now I’ve had some campaigns where a random NPC becomes a mascot or sorts and the party would’ve mourned thier passing under most circumstances but as a DM we have full control over when and how NPCs die.
This month, really its been rough for the NPCs, we have had a few NPCs die whether from the Nat attack or after that in defence of Kyoko. Deciding the right time to pull that level and watch the players reactions, who deal with death daily is something that is hard to come to a decision on and for me I am myself a few questions.
1. Is their death driving the plot forward? If the plot progresses and the chance for more adventures and growth for the players and their character then it could be a good time to move on.
2. Does the NPC growing and taking up more and more “screen time” then the players? If yes then its another indicator that it could be the right move.
3. Will the players continue down their adventuring path without this NPC, are they still relevant for future sessions? This one is tricky. If its a no then you can move on easily, but if its a yes then you may need to consider what else you can do to help drive the narrative as a side player. A magical journal that contains the knowledge of the NPC is a common crutch to fall on, or, bringing them back as a guide or spirit. It cheapens their existence and can also grate on some players nerves but if the answers to #1 and #2 were also yes then #3 is almost always a sign for the tigger to be pulled.
I’ve been looking at what can be my mid campaign shift and the migration from one arc to another for a while now and moving from having ” a guide with a plan” to being relatively blind is probably the next step for kyoko and the Party. It outs more emphasis on the party to do more but also fits well with the goals of thr NPCs so it doesn’t feel like a “rocks fall” moment – as much…
When deciding to remind an npc in full or partially from the scene as long as it benefits the story and players then normally it will end fine.
Don’t forget to come back tomorrow for the last of the months Brazen Wolfe Tabletop content and as always, don’t forget to roll with advantage,
The Brazen Wolfe
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