Okay, okay. I know I promised a bunch more bloodragers, but I’m getting a bit tired of making just one class. So, I’m going to start mixing it up a bit. This week was interesting for me, with finishing up my Summer job and getting ready for school, my Pathfinder time was quickly usurped by other things. But alas, don’t worry. Next week is the final week for one of my two home games, so expect some GREAT NPCs next week. But, that’s enough about next week. This week, I’ve inked out a Numerian Gun Tank (Boom), a Black Powder Inquisition Inquisitor (Bigger Boom), and the actual randomized level 6 bloodrager I promised forever ago.
The Standard Disclaimer
Hello there you tabletop geeks. Due to the fact that you’re reading this article, I assume it means you’re interested, at least mildly, in my favorite hobby, the Pathfinder tabletop RPG. I’m usually the DM when I play Pathfinder, so I’m almost always on the lookout for good NPCs, and the ones provided by Paizo in their NPC Codex are not only rather lackluster, but are, let’s face it, rather bland. No archetypes, all core rulebook material, and some of them are flat out bad. Cue the NPC Compendium.
I’ve been playing Pathfinder for the past 2 years, and recently finished up a campaign for a group of power-gamers, so I learned the hard way what works and what doesn’t. This doesn’t mean all the characters I create are min-maxed to go against characters like that; they can’t be, and that’s not the purpose of the NPC Compendium. But I digress.
What is the NPC Compendium?
The Compendium is here as an aid to GMs everywhere. When finished, the compendium will have at least one character of every level for a large majority of the classes in the game. The interesting part, however, is that all characters except those of level 5, 10, and 15-20 are randomly generated (except those denoted with a *): a random race, random archetype, and random class features (for example, bloodlines), for the purposes of not only exploring the different options available, but possibly completely re-imagining a class into a different role.
Now, not everything here is super effective at what it does, but if something in the random generator comes up that severely handicaps a build, I change it. None of these NPCs are bad. Some are just average, while others, specifically those that aren’t randomly generated, are usually the best I could possibly come up with. I’ve tried to create some interesting builds. I also provide some guidelines on what to do to with the characters, including synergistic options where available.
I have one last thing to note before I begin explaining what I created for this week. The NPCs at levels 5, 10, 15, and 20 are designed with player gold. This means that none of the NPCs in my compendium are CR 4, 9, 14, or 19. That’s just a symptom of the gold system in Pathfinder. This also means that the NPCs at levels 5, 10, 15, and 20 are created using the standard 20 point buy, instead of the pre-generated stat system presented within the Core Rulebook, so they’re especially better than the other NPCs. Be sure to use these NPCs as Big Bad Evil Guys instead of average mooks or your gold amount will get all out of whack.
This week’s additions to the Compendium: Boom, Bigger Boom, and a Rat!
Shotgun Sharpshooter – Inquisitor (Level 15*)
My oh my does this build have a LOT of different stages to it. Firstly, if you check out the Statistics section of the stat block, you’ll notice that the Sharpshooter has been statted out in 5 DIFFERENT stages of buffing, from absolutely no buffs, to maybe missing out on the last spell in the list. Be sure to use these to your advantage and let your players experience some slightly surprised versions of this enemy as well. This build has an asterisk because I built this NPC with choices, but it doesn’t have PC gold like most of the other level 15s will. This one is meant to be a mook, not a BBEG. However, this definitely could make a decent BBEG if we just raise the saves, the HP, and give them some kind of metamagic rod. I’ll leave that to you if you’d like to do it.
Tech Wall – Gunslinger (Level 11)
Full disclosure, the random generator DID choose Human here. It wasn’t me, I promise. That being said, I added in Techslinger because I’m adding things to my Iron Gods home campaign and needed a gunslinger. This build focuses on the insane teamwork of setting up a wall via tower shields (as a move action because of Mobile Bulwark Style), as well as the gunslinger’s Startling Shot so that we can hit a dex-denied touch AC. It’s a great strategy, but the entire group can easily be taken out with a well placed fireball, lightning bolt, or confusion effect, so be careful against players who love their AoE spells.
Sewer Rat – Bloodrager (Level 6)
Imagine this for a moment: you’ve been sent by the local Lord to take care of a mischievous gang of ratfolk that hide out in the sewers; nothing new there. As you turn a corner, though, you notice not only several ratfolk , but some of them are wielding kukris in arms that are 15 feet long. Oh, and they’re sharing squares with eachother on the other side of the sewer, and because they’re ratfolk that means they’re flanking you.
Well, that’s exactly what this build is. Aberrant bloodline, combined with the longarm spell, combine for a total of 15 foot reach, and since these are urban bloodragers (the archetype) when you finally DO get to them, their AC is actually quite high (25 AC on a bloodrager). They may not do a terrible amount of damage, but they’re definitely accurate.
Next Week: Doubles, Devil Worshipers, and Holy People!
I’ve been working on the doubles I promised last week. They’ve got a few kinks I’d like to work out, so I’ll be releasing several next week. I’ve also recently gotten my hands on a copy of Inner Sea Gods, and I absolutely adore the flavor of some of the items, so I’ll be creating a few deity worshipers (you can bet your hat Asmodeus is one of them), so stick around for those as I’ll be making some legitimately good-aligned NPCs for use in an evil campaign (or as powerful allies. That’s up to you). Until then, stay lucky!