You want to run an rpg campaign. Your players roll up characters and you do a few intro adventures but realize you don’t have anything long-term. Setting up an rpg campaign. Thanks to Tom for bringing this up.
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The Warden comments on Monsters as Monsters
Just finished this episode and the Gollum/Sauron analogy is bang on. There are two correlations to go with this.
The higher up the ladder a character is, the more evil they are. It’s almost as if the true sign of evil is… bureaucracy!! (Gasp!)
In my own games, I’ve had truly evil characters become nuanced and deeper because they connected with the players in some way during play. My old home brew campaign had an undead devourer/crime boss known as the Kamouraska. He was meant to be a bad mother (shut your mouth!) that was targeted by a vengeful spirit looking to kill him. My expectation was that the party would want to help kill the Kamouraska but something about the character and how I portrayed him made the party want to keep him around as a recurring character. He was evil and you wouldn’t want to turn your back on him but they found uses for him. He became detailed, we built a history, and he became a major NPC in the campaign.
Being able to convert evil characters into complex ones is a valuable tool for RPGs and perhaps one of the missed points about all orcs/drow being evil. Regardless of your personal views and understanding of how this can be problematic for some, having that flexibility to make a monster or NPC more than just evil can and should always be a possibility. In a way, chalk this up to another flaw in alignments as they apply at the table.
Great episode, really got me thinking about the topic in my own games. Not that I’m running or playing in any right now – online play with rural internet isn’t a thing at this time. But that’s the sacrifice I’m making during this pandemic. And THAT is how you complain about first world problems. Cue end credits, close curtains, turn up the house lights, I’m out.
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