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Hello forumites. Even golden ones.

 

This is my NPC thread. There are others like it, but this is mine*

 

Rather than people post dense TL;DR blocks of text that nobody will read, here's a really quick series of NPC hooks to tell us something about your ideal henchman / henchwoman / henchperson (I am the king of inclusivity, me).

 

It isn't the usual class / race / schtick. It's more of a feel for the type of NPC you'd ideally like to have as the one you'd never swap out, even at the expense of party efficacy...

 

ROLE you choose (anything from Tank / Packrat all the way through to muse / philosophical foil / comic relief)

 

KEY ITEM - What groovy item does the NPC have (Is it a +12 Hackmaster sword, a pet or an heirloom)?

 

APPEARANCE -  Imagine the NPC has a little custom avatar (is it a big fat dude or a curvy uber-chick or a tattoo-covered barbarian like one of Noneks's or a mysterious shaman swathed in animal fur?)

 

FEEL - How does having this NPC make you feel about playing (intrigued cuz of back-story, just plain happy that they are good at what they do, thrilled because they look / act just like you wanted them to, amused cuz they are funny)?

 

I hope you see what I'm getting at, a character rather than a set of stats but not ignoring the fact that the character has a role in a game.

 

Carry on.

 

 

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I'll have at it.

 

ROLE both intellectual foil and comic relief.  I'd like to see an NPC who's highly sensitive to all the absurdities and contradictions of life, who switches between benevolent amusement at the lesser ones and a resigned acceptance of the greater ones.  To my mind, mechanically this would work well with something like a cipher, ranger, or wizard, but the class doesn't matter so much.

 

KEY ITEM would be a bow made for the NPC that was never strung, that the NPC uses as a walking stick.  First time the PC asks about it, the NPC would say something about how a bow without a string is just a staff, and ask what the PC thinks that means, trying to prompt some philosophical BS response about unintended consequences.  And then the NPC would just say, "No, it means never pay anybody before delivery if there's a war on."

 

APPEARANCE is never something I'm too fussed about, but I think I'd probably want this NPC to be female, short, stocky, and given to a slightly swashbuckling style of dress.

 

FEEL--the appeal here would be that I'd have an NPC in the party I could depend on to think about things critically without either being "plot exposition chick" or "everything must be interpreted cynically dude."

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Hello forumites. Even golden ones.

 

This is my NPC thread. There are others like it, but this is mine*

 

Rather than people post dense TL;DR blocks of text that nobody will read, here's a really quick series of NPC hooks to tell us something about your ideal henchman / henchwoman / henchperson (I am the king of inclusivity, me).

 

It isn't the usual class / race / schtick. It's more of a feel for the type of NPC you'd ideally like to have as the one you'd never swap out, even at the expense of party efficacy...

 

ROLE you choose (anything from Tank / Packrat all the way through to muse / philosophical foil / comic relief)

 

KEY ITEM - What groovy item does the NPC have (Is it a +12 Hackmaster sword, a pet or an heirloom)?

 

APPEARANCE -  Imagine the NPC has a little custom avatar (is it a big fat dude or a curvy uber-chick or a tattoo-covered barbarian like one of Noneks's or a mysterious shaman swathed in animal fur?)

 

FEEL - How does having this NPC make you feel about playing (intrigued cuz of back-story, just plain happy that they are good at what they do, thrilled because they look / act just like you wanted them to, amused cuz they are funny)?

 

I hope you see what I'm getting at, a character rather than a set of stats but not ignoring the fact that the character has a role in a game.

 

Carry on.

 

Good idea Monte, in response

 

ROLE : Sorceress or Cleric

 

KEY ITEM - Unique and ancient magic books or knows about the location of additional items

 

APPEARANCE -  Really beautiful and seductive, the character makes a point of encouraging Romance but has an ulterior motive. Possible chainmail bikini appearance but not necessarily

FEEL -  The character is an invaluable addition in combat but clearly has a hidden past. The character also draws you into some sort of side quest, also during the game you run into someone from the persons past where you end up having to fight in order to keep the character alive, similar to Qara in NWN2

 

:)

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

 

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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Rothl, A follower of Hocard

 

Role: Diplomat/Smooth talker, well connected. Reputation as an eccentric wastrel. His failed study as a priest of Hocard leaves the suggestion he may be a noble's son, a reputation which he's turned into a vast network of assumed connections.

 

Key item: A blackbook no-one ever gets to see. Stories suggest in it are the names of all kinds of underworld connections, other stories suggest it contains a hitlist, that it is a magical book writing down the names of any tradesman you may need. other stories still talk about how it contains a person's secrets, for use in blackmail.

Rothl has personally helped some of these stories into the world. Usually he's got another one by the time he's finished telling the first.

 

Appearance: Rothl is tall, gangly, and not particularly attractive. He looks very kind, but not particularly impressive. Rothl is about 35. He may be balding.

 

Feel: Rothl is your guide in the City. He knows everyone and everything. He can open doors for you that would otherwise remain closed. Anyone paying close attention sees that Rothl makes more promises than he keeps, and that he is very apt at enjoying other people's hospitality, even when it isn't offered. He's not a terrific combatant, and will outright refuse to fight for long in the wilderness or on the old paths.

 

Recruitment: Rothl is found hanging out in a library of the church of Hocard, He's got a questline involving finding his blackbook, then following some mysterious directions based on what he finds in there. Only one quest outcome will allow him to join your party.

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Remember: Argue the point, not the person. Remain polite and constructive. Friendly forums have friendly debate. There's no shame in being wrong. If you don't have something to add, don't post for the sake of it. And don't be afraid to post thoughts you are uncertain about, that's what discussion is for.
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Name: Ruffie

Race: Elf

Gender: Female

Role: Brute

Key Item: Boobs

Appearance: Chainmail bikini wearing Morrigan lookalike

Feel: Spouse Abuser

 

This character will be romanceable, but as the romance progresses she will become more and more aggressive, eventually becoming abusive to the PC.  The only way to 'win' the romance is to get the hell out of it as soon as you can, as she will not change, only pretend to in order to control you.  Ruffie will eventually kill the PC by shoving them down the stairs if they don't end the romance, and even if they do she will come after them, even if removed from the party, particularly when drunk.  Naturally I expect this to become the pre-emininent romance option, and many fans will try to justify her behaviour on forums. 

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"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

"Space is big, really big." - Douglas Adams

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ROLE: Kite

 

KEY ITEM - Boots of speed

 

APPEARANCE -  Wears outrageously bright red, green and blue clothes and waves a red cape around.

 

FEEL - Hilarious to watch them running around the battlefield getting the attention of the enemies and leading them on a merry chase while my archers kill them. ... ... the novelty quickly wears off and I dump them in favour of Sagani.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

*Casts Nature's Terror* :aiee: , *Casts Firebug* :fdevil: , *Casts Rot-Skulls* :skull: , *Casts Garden of Life* :luck: *Spirit-shifts to cat form* :cat:

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Name: Ruffie

Race: Elf

Gender: Female

Role: Brute

Key Item: Boobs

Appearance: Chainmail bikini wearing Morrigan lookalike

Feel: Spouse Abuser

 

This character will be romanceable, but as the romance progresses she will become more and more aggressive, eventually becoming abusive to the PC.  The only way to 'win' the romance is to get the hell out of it as soon as you can, as she will not change, only pretend to in order to control you.  Ruffie will eventually kill the PC by shoving them down the stairs if they don't end the romance, and even if they do she will come after them, even if removed from the party, particularly when drunk.  Naturally I expect this to become the pre-emininent romance option, and many fans will try to justify her behaviour on forums. 

 

:lol: I like it, I'm not sure if you being serious but you have proposed some good ideas. For example Ruffie could end up trying to harm other members of the party if they also try to initiate some form of Romance with you...or something similar

Edited by BruceVC

"We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” -  George Bernard Shaw

 

"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead" - Nelson Mandela

 

 

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Name: Ruffie

Race: Elf

Gender: Female

Role: Brute

Key Item: Boobs

Appearance: Chainmail bikini wearing Morrigan lookalike

Feel: Spouse Abuser

 

This character will be romanceable, but as the romance progresses she will become more and more aggressive, eventually becoming abusive to the PC.  The only way to 'win' the romance is to get the hell out of it as soon as you can, as she will not change, only pretend to in order to control you.  Ruffie will eventually kill the PC by shoving them down the stairs if they don't end the romance, and even if they do she will come after them, even if removed from the party, particularly when drunk.  Naturally I expect this to become the pre-emininent romance option, and many fans will try to justify her behaviour on forums. 

 

:lol: I like it, I'm not sure if you being serious but you have proposed some good ideas. For example Ruffie could end up trying to harm other members of the party if they also try to initiate some form of Romance with you...or something similar

 

Yes!  I forgot to mention that Ruffie will be an aggressive drunk, and will get drunk quite alot.  When drunk she'll become aggressive to what she perceives as 'rivals', even if they are not doing anything, and will try to get them to leave the party as they are threats to her control over you, though most of her physical abuse will be directed at the player character still, quite often taking her frustrations with other characters out on the PC.  She will spread false rumours as well to drive wedges between the party members, but doing what she wants only leads to her becoming even more controlling and abusive.  She'll be all apologetic afterwards, but she'll still twist her apology to make it seem like it was your fault, "You should know not to upset me when I'm drunk," kind of thing.

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"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

"Space is big, really big." - Douglas Adams

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I'll stick old Harold down here:

 

A filthy old manservant, lets call him Harold. Alcoholic, smells of urine,sweat, tobacco and Old Spice, teeth and hands brown from rolling his cigarettes. Coughs constantly, attacking his chest will result in muttered thanks, and a brief respite: "Thats got it."

 

Extremely conservative, racist, speciesist and sexist. Has a derogatory nickname for every person he meets. Is fiercely loyal to his master, served in their family for millenia, and believes in old fashion values. Has a near limitless capacity for absorbing damage, as he's been around a lot in his youth, but is useless in a fight. Complains often however that you should be beating him more often, raping milkmaids and beheading the uppity peasantry, as that's a noblemans job. Can find anything his master fancies in any city, seemingly has more contacts and resources than an entire thieves guild.

 

Never usually gives a straight answer: "Here and there, now and then, this and that." These are his usual responses to any questions. Has a son in training to take over the family business and a daughter making her living on her back as per family tradition, is fiercely proud of both of them. Looking forward to the day his son slits his throat while he's asleep and nicks everything he owns, as the family custom of succession dictates.

 

Can lift and pack massive amounts of gear, fifty pounds more than the strongest character in the party. Has thirty two fatal and incurable conditions, plagues and injuries but doesn't complain about it too much, as he really enjoyed acquiring them.

 

Role: Interrupt mid combat to ask if you're done yet, remind you that your grandfather was twice the man you are, and your grandmother thrice, lech at women, drink, smoke, steal from you, cough during stealth missions.

 

Key Item: Backpack of gargantuan proportions, hipflask filled with molten lava and a flashers mac.

 

Appearance: Breaks mirrors.

 

Feel: Embarassed and incompetent.

Edited by Nonek
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Quite an experience to live in misery isn't it? That's what it is to be married with children.

I've seen things you people can't even imagine. Pearly Kings glittering on the Elephant and Castle, Morris Men dancing 'til the last light of midsummer. I watched Druid fires burning in the ruins of Stonehenge, and Yorkshiremen gurning for prizes. All these things will be lost in time, like alopecia on a skinhead. Time for tiffin.

 

Tea for the teapot!

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NAME: yesman (doesn't matter since you can legally change it in-game later)

 

ROLE: to be a yes-man

 

APPERANCE (and gender): Completely generic.

 

 

This man (or woman) will never disagree wit the PC. EVER. The ultimate ego-stroking character, this NPC will always have kiss the players ass. He/her will change anything about him/her to suit the players will.

Don't like his/her name? No problem, the local magistrate can legally change it.

Don't like his/her look? Magic plastic surgery! Weather you want a sexy seductress or a shy librarian types, a muscle-bound Connan type or a slim athlete.

Special items? Whatever item you designate will become that, since you are the boss.

 

That washed up pair of undies will become his/her holy and most treasured item. Because you are the boss and you gave it to him.

All will prostate themselves before your glory.

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* YOU ARE A WRONGULARITY FROM WHICH NO RIGHT CAN ESCAPE! *

Chuck Norris was wrong once - He thought HE made a mistake!

 

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I'm pretty sure I had a thing going on with Ruffie at university.

 

 

I might be living with Ruffle ;(

 

 

She does get around a lot.  Lepetitmac, run while you can and keep away from stairs!

"That rabbit's dynamite!" - King Arthur, Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail

"Space is big, really big." - Douglas Adams

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Name: Ruffie

Race: Elf

Gender: Female

Role: Brute

Key Item: Boobs

Appearance: Chainmail bikini wearing Morrigan lookalike

Feel: High maintenance

 

I'd like a variation. An easily romanceable (by whatever sex/class character you happen to have) ego-stroker who conforms to your will all the time.

Only every now and then there'd be a ka-ching when she grabs a good slice of party cash to by herself more lingerie and jewelry.

Failing the extra cash, she'd just pilfer your magic sword when you're in that deep sleep and pawn it.

 

She'd promise to not do that again and you'd know she's lying.

But she'd be the hottest and I couldn't bring myself to boot her.

 

And I'm not talking out of experience and I'm not bitter.

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Note: for this NPC to work, it requires that A: the player is someone special/someone with power, and B: that the player will be in a position to gain power/change (part of) the world during the endgame.

Name: (take your pick)
Race: Human, though any would work, I'm just assuming there are fewer who despise human companions, compared to other races.
Gender: Any, though since the majority of players are almost certain to be male, female might be best.
Role: Pragmatist (any class would work)
Key Item: a smile (though explosives might be useful too)
Appearance: good looking, practical clothes.
Feel: A common sense pragmatist, who just happens to agree with you most of the time.

The idea here is to have a character who is encountered after the player has started getting a reputation, and will act according to the reputation the player has. If she ends up saying something the player disagree with (because you can't know everything about the players preferences from reputation alone), the player can argue with her, at which point she'll end the conversation by agreeing with the player (a bit like Anders/Viconia). When anyone (including other members of the party) confronts the player, she'll defend him/her, sometimes preventing those confronting from disliking the player. In short, she's the most loyal friend of the player, and will stick with him/her through thick and thin.
Too bad it might be an act.

In reality this NPC has clear values and goals, and sees the player as someone who can either help or hinder said goals. I don't care much what those goals turn put to be, as long as it's something broadly seen as "good", and is connected to a major quest. She might be fighting to prevent mass extinctions, or maybe she is a firm believer in the potential for science, maybe she wants to prevent the strong souled ruling the others (or any form of the "strong" exploiting the "weak")  maybe she is fighting to prevent terrible uses of animancy (skein steel), while believing in its potential. You get the idea.

 

When dealing with the player, she'll express and argue her cause, however, if the player disagrees, she'll appear to accept his/her arguments, until the player has to make another choice relevant to her values/goals, at which point she'll be persuaded once again. The idea is to use the fact that several companions in RPGs can be persuaded to agree with the player (Viconia, Anders, Leliana, Bastilla, etc.), to fool the player into thinking they have managed to change her. This is also why it's important that she defends the player, and can diffuse disputes with others. The player needs to see her as a useful ally, stroking their ego subtly.

This goes on until a quest will have major repercussions for her cause, at which point one of two things can happen. If the player has supported her views, and have actively helped her cause, nothing special will happen, she'll support the player and fight for what she believes in. If the player have worked against her cause however, she'll do whatever it takes for her cause, and assuming the player has brought her this far, there won't be a way to stop her. Maybe she blows up the magic device of power, maybe she causes a massive riot that prevents the player from assuming power of a city, maybe she persuades the nobles to not pick you as the new prince. The point is, she locks the player out of choosing an ending that would either A: give the player a lot of power, or B: harm her cause. This doesn't mean the player is locked out of "good" or "evil" endings, only the ones that would (potentially) harm her cause. 

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ok, let's give it a try

 

I would love to stroll around with a mash-up of Candid and Simo Häyhä like Dwarf mercenary fighter with a soft spot for Orlans. Patient, reliable tank, rat-pack, and occasional unwilling mentor, for those who don't expect to discuss the meaning of life. After all, his no suave talker or philosopher by a long shot. He tends to keep to himself and isn't very fond about pondering some abstract ideas. Even then, very cautious about sharing his version of "Here and Now" doctrine, because he met way to many turned out to be hedonists to know better.

 

His key items would be a simple, but very well maintained short sword and an 'high tier' slightly enchanted composite bow, for which he paid a hefty price to a trusted bowyer back in his hometown. Few throwing daggers just in case and an archaic looking buckler - the only thing that though still highly useful, doesn't fit into the picture - if only because of how old it seems in comparison to the rest of his equipment. It would turn out to be a gift from his father but learning any more details beside that, would prove to be very hard (because family heirlooms is a boring story and he's well aware of that).

Not much beyond that, as he doesn't like trinkets and his dressing code is purely utilitarian.

Aside for few minor scars and cut off left hands little finger tip, there's nothing interesting about him. With his watery eyes and boring, rough face you can't exactly call him "memorable"

 

About a name:

I suppose he may have got a nickname sometime, from one of his former employers, or from other mercenaries he used to work with. One that describes his efficiency at killing and surly, presumptuous attitude (because that's what people tend to think about quiet ones). Nothing more than disguise he embraced to be left alone for reasons just as trivial and boring as the story of his life, his buckler and non existing ambitions.

PC would profit from a nice, but not over the top bonus to skill checks while dealing with craftsmen, soldiers and alike, because of esteem he feels towards those and because they understand he's one of their kind. Unfortunately there would be a downside to that while dealing with merchants, politicians, artists and and so on, because they could easily tell he's not very happy about listening to their yapping and, generally, being in the same room for any longer than it takes to struck the deal.

Also maybe small bonus to perception, because he's very focused on a job at hand, not day dreaming like the easily bored and distracted others?

 

For the first part of game player should feel about him... somewhere around "meh" but useful (e. g. as a mule) and quite if not very efficient (but not excellent as that would come later and should involve PC decision) with sword and bow thus providing for wider spectrum of party builds. Gradually one could learn more about his simple ways, and set-low life expectations. It would became obvious he's surprisingly (given his proffesion) non-violent prone and appreciates life, in general. His killing blows are efficient but as quick as possible given the situation (mercy killing maybe?). Almost never cruel. Almost being a catch - could snap if forced to deal with vicious, sadistic, misery bringing individuals. Especially those abusing laws and powers. Would need time to cope with such outburst after that, very foundations of how he sees himself shaken.

Further he would prove to be one of the most trustworthy and dependable characters (some betrayal among the story line or optionally redeemable script for other follower to emphasize that), as long as PC tends to pick the least aggressive options (options not one option) possible, both in combat and in social dealings. 

All of this soundly rooted in his "simple values" founded integrity and traces of "knight in sour armour" trope. 

And to sum it up: he's the type that claims to be focused on "cultivating his own garden" rather than saving/fighting the whole world, but at the same time gradually making life of those around him better in the process. Thus getting involved in things further and further distant from that "own garden" dream of his. With a good writer (i.e not me) that could be made into a follower quest in spirit of those from P:T (Dak'kon, Morte) with multiple endings.

 

Important: until that moment of realization somewhere in the middle (or 2/3) game though, he would have to be paid just enough to make the player feel he's/she's really spending some of that hard earned gold, but not that much to overdo the pros of dragging him around. Technically very hard to balance I assume, if the amount of GP player can get through the game is not hard codded from the very beginning.

 

Mistreated or forced to cooperate with PC that's selfish and or cruel, he'll stick around until the end of a chapter claiming he fulfilled his contract.

If PC tries to kill someone completely random / innocent, he will strongly oppose and try to stop PC.

If PC persist on doing so, he will attack throwing all his money in the PC face

 

Can't be recruited by PC with a noticeable bad karma/reputation.

 

 

Sounds boring and trivial? That's good enough - at least I achieved that aforementioned "for the first part of game" goal ;)

Edited by milczyciel
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"There are no good reasons. Only legal ones." - Ross Scott

 It's not that I'm lazy. I just don't care.

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Name: Vensaré


Race:  Aumaua Godlike

Gender: Male

Role: Crafting genius and heavy hitter

Key Item: Double Anvil hammers

Appearance: Wiry, and muscular. Hardly any body fat.

Feel:  Vensaré is born a gifted smith. Something he credits to his godlike heritage. Everything he sees is somehow incorporated into his next design improving on his last dramatic success. His Arms and Armour are expensive to make, both in time and money, but excellent in quality, beautiful, and always somewhat unexpected. Vensaré is poor, he doesn't make a living selling his wares because he doesn't work on commission, because he is too proud to make average wares for average purchasing power. It is fairly easy to get him to travel with you:

Recruitment: Vensaré will come along on the condition that you let him identify/see all found weapons and armour before anyone equips it, let him have all the crafting materials, and let him do all the crafting. Forgo this too often, and he will leave.

He doesn't make armour for the rest of the party, unless you manage to advance your relationship with him further.

A bit of a prima donna, his Smithing hammers are both tools of his trade, and excellent (and constantly improved upon) weapons.

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Remember: Argue the point, not the person. Remain polite and constructive. Friendly forums have friendly debate. There's no shame in being wrong. If you don't have something to add, don't post for the sake of it. And don't be afraid to post thoughts you are uncertain about, that's what discussion is for.
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NAME Edward

 

ROLE Bully; to knock down traditional Chosen Ones a few a lot of pegs

 

KEY ITEM Better shoes than your PC's

 

APPEARANCE Smug smile, condescending tone, etc.

 

FEEL He's the kid who turned your early school years into continued misery. Actually, you became an adventurer to escape him... but it didn't work out. He became your companion because... "Aww, stop that! Yes, I'm your bitch. Please allow me to continue my quests, I must kill those trolls. Yes, I'll give you all the magic items afterwards and drink your piss, master."

 

QOUTE: "You saved the world from impending doom? Do you think anyone cares about that? And besides, I could have saved the world faster than you did, and without snot dangling from my nose."

The Seven Blunders/Roots of Violence: Wealth without work. Pleasure without conscience. Knowledge without character. Commerce without morality. Science without humanity. Worship without sacrifice. Politics without principle. (Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi)

 

Let's Play the Pools Saga (SSI Gold Box Classics)

Pillows of Enamored Warfare -- The Zen of Nodding

 

 

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NAME: Poun Howund.

 

ROLE: Sex Machine

 

KEY ITEM: The Golden Codpiece of Thrusting Destruction: Charms any creature within 100 feet, unleashes bolts of pure sexy that deal extremely high piercing damage.

 

APPEARANCE: Whatever he damn well feels like.

 

FEEL: Induces a feeling of soreness.

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"I'm fine with humanity being wiped out" - majestic

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NAME: Vasir Gelänte

 

ROLE: Hires your party for escort/expedition. Is joinable NPC for duration of the questline

KEY ITEM: A large chest instead of a backpack.

APPEARANCE: Overdressed, clearly wealthy, large beard, slightly crazy eyes. Strong back and arms.

FEEL: This foppish rich man clearly thinks that he can do anything he wants, maybe that's how it's been for him. He's determined to get into the wild lands of Dyrwood and collect some fine specimens to take home. And he's willing to do anything.

RECRUITMENT: Found at the headquarters of the Horticulturists

Vasir is prepared to pay you a very fine sum, or do a good word for you amongst his peers, if you can take him to the furthers reaches of the dyrwood, and find a living specimen of a fabled animal. He's got several animals and plants on his list to take home, though the fabled one is on the top of his list. Each specimen will require overcoming different challenges, not every specimen could make it back alive, although that is very much the intent.

 

Vasir pays you upon your return to the Horticulturists HQ, based on what you've managed to find. Specimens go in his chest, which he assures you has been "retrofitted for biological stability" by which he might mean the air-holes and the tresh.

If you do well, he may have another expedition for you when he returns.

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Remember: Argue the point, not the person. Remain polite and constructive. Friendly forums have friendly debate. There's no shame in being wrong. If you don't have something to add, don't post for the sake of it. And don't be afraid to post thoughts you are uncertain about, that's what discussion is for.
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