WotC The Third Rule





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  1. #1

    The Third Rule

    DMs can??t resist the urge to stage encounters or build adventures around an NPC's betrayal. Here's a guilt-free way to pull it off without alienating your players.

    Read The Third Rule on D&D Insider here!

 

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    I think my favourite NPC betrayal of all time came right at the end of one of the chapters of the Shackled City campaign. The NPC in question had been travelling with the group for some time, and of course they didn't really trust him. When he sprang his sudden but inevitable betrayal, the party Paladin charged the NPC, attacked with his axe two-handed and using maximum Power Attack, rolled a crit, and inflicted something like 150 points of damage, killing him outright!

    I felt that this was an interesting column by Chris Perkins, and the advice of having characters in thirds was quite solid - I plan to use that in future.

    However, his example from "True Romance" was rather odd - that film only has a single event that could be considered a betrayal, and it is perpetrated by one of the characters Chris lists as 'trustworthy'!

    Still, that shouldn't detract from the column as a whole. As I said, an interesting read.

  • #3
    Quote Originally Posted by delericho View Post
    I think my favourite NPC betrayal of all time came right at the end of one of the chapters of the Shackled City campaign. The NPC in question had been travelling with the group for some time, and of course they didn't really trust him. When he sprang his sudden but inevitable betrayal, the party Paladin charged the NPC, attacked with his axe two-handed and using maximum Power Attack, rolled a crit, and inflicted something like 150 points of damage, killing him outright!
    We had a similar betrayal in an old WEG Star Wars bountyhunter module. (Spoilers ahead, so if you're going to play No Disintegrations stop reading.) A bountyhunter that we were partnering with led us into an ambush. Our wookie bountyhunter charged the betrayer with his vibroax, hit them on the first try, and kept rolling 6s on his damage roll's wild die. After the backstabber resisted his damage there was a ridiculous amount of damage left over--enough to kill the backstabber twice over.

    Quote Originally Posted by delericho View Post
    However, his example from "True Romance" was rather odd - that film only has a single event that could be considered a betrayal, and it is perpetrated by one of the characters Chris lists as 'trustworthy'!
    It's been a while since I've seen True Romance, what's the single event that you're thinking of?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wednesday Boy View Post
    It's been a while since I've seen True Romance, what's the single event that you're thinking of?
    Spoiler:
    His friend gets arrested for drugs possession, and proceeds to sell out everyone involved in the deal to the police. In the rest of the film, pretty much everyone behaves as you would expect - Gary Oldman and Christopher Walken are playing straight-up villains, Brad Pitt's playing a loser stoner, and Dennis Hopper is an out-and-out good guy. There are no betrayals as such - it's no surprise when a bad guy turns out to be a bad guy .

  • #5
    Spoiler:
    Ah, I thought it was Bronson Pinchot who sold everyone out.


    Quote Originally Posted by delericho View Post
    it's no surprise when a bad guy turns out to be a bad guy .
    Aside from the error that you mentioned above, I think that was his point. It's good to have characters whose actions never surprise you.

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    Wyvernbait. Definately Wyvernbait.

    Ridden by an antipaladin named Kumon Getteme.
    "If it has stats, we can kill it." - T.G. Jackson, intro to 3rd ed Hackmaster

    Homebrew 4E material | My campaign world - Amberos

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    Too many betrayals in the past. One in a campaign and no NPC is ever trusted again. And those who can be killed, are. See my sig.
    Scrag 'em all and let the gods sort 'em out!

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