Wednesday, June 5, 2013

My Favorite NPC: Rohan Tomat

It's weird - when I think of NPC's that I've really liked, none of MY NPC's come to mind.  Which is actually pretty concerning.  Note to DM self - you need to spend more time on NPC's.

The NPC that really stands out from all the years of gaming was from our numerous Vampire: the Masquerade games in university.  My buddy Nic was a truly standout DM - able to manage complex political plots, multiple well-fleshed-out NPC's and basically playing really good Vampires.  His games were always tons of fun, even if we were often the simpletons among the scheming, subtle Kindred.

But of all the manipulative bastards that we encountered in those games, Rohan Tomat was by far the most bastardly.  And he was truly horrible because he was likable.  You KNEW that Rohan was fucking you over, but the smile and the carrot were always too much to resist.

We never learned much in the way of specifics about Rohan - his allegiances, history and motives were things he kept close to his chest.  I think he was some variety of Sabbat, but certainly not a very invested one.  Rohan's loyalties were generally to Rohan - or to whatever plot, scheme or machination Rohan was cooking up.

This is how I picture Rohan.
I remember several times that the party decided that they needed to call in Rohan to help out with an
insoluble problem.  It was always an agonizing decision, because you were aware that you were going to get screwed, and that it would *seem* like it was worth it, yet deep in your mind, that niggling feeling that you were getting short, poo-encrusted end of the stick was always there.

I don't remember ever putting one over on Rohan, although I'm pretty sure we defeated his minions a few times.  He never hung around for that, though - when the fangs came out, Rohan was never around for the shit-storm.

We liked him, hated him, fought against him and allied with him.  He was sly, slick and utterly unscrupulous, and we never, ever out thought him.  The very best thing about him was that Nic played him utterly fairly.  No DM fiat, "magical" protection or anything.  Just cruel smarts and the willingness to use them.  I'm sure now he was kind of a "mary-sue" NPC for Nic, but that doesn't matter.  When the topic of NPC's comes up, Rohan stands above them all.