There has been many writings submitted and several readers have submitted great articles that I will highlight during each segment of Nerdarchy’s Subreddit Submitters Highlight.
Last week on Nerdarchy’s Subreddit Submitters Highlight we delved into Lethality in Dungeons and Dragons 5th Edition with Blue_Drake. This week we are highlighting “Tips for Integrating Monster PCs into a Group” by Blue_Drake a.k.a Bob Casale. If you don’t have a reddit account yet, don’t worry. Just sign up here for free and join the conversation. The following is an excerpt from the article.
“I have a confession to make. I enjoy playing monstrous PCs. In Pathfinder it was a kobold sorcerer, right now I’m thinking about a dragonborn paladin for my group’s next D&D 5E campaign. As someone who enjoys playing monster races, I’ve read a lot about running monsters as PCs.
The topic is often polarizing: on one hand you have people like myself who enjoy playing monsters and others who have no interest or just prefer the Tolkienesque canon of humans, dwarves, elves and halflings/hobbits.
So what happens when you end up at a gaming table in a group with players of both perspectives? Do you welcome the lizardmen, gnolls and orcs, or do you shake your fists in the air and shout “No badwrong-furry-scaly-PCs at my gaming table!”?
Good arguments can be made for and against monster PCs, but I’m not really interested in convincing anyone either way. If your group doesn’t like monster PCs that’s fine. What I’d like to do here is present some questions and ideas for you to consider if you or someone you play with is thinking about running a monstrous PC.
For me, the most important question is: Why do I want to be a monster PC? Take a few minutes and think about what the appeal is. It’s okay if your initial answer is: “Because monster X or Y is cool!” but try and go into more detail. Why is it cool to you? What specific aspects of the monster do you like?
Your answer to this question may raise a few red flags that could be disruptive to the game. If the appeal is the monster character, as you see it, is more powerful than the normal races than you could disrupt other player’s fun at the table.
Think how you would feel if everyone got to be the race you’re considering, but you had to choose from a standard race. Would you feel disadvantaged? If the answer is yes then you’ve chosen a monster race that is too powerful.
Another red flag to watch out for is monsters that create problems for the whole party because of ‘handicaps’.
A merman may be really cool and at the same power level as other PCs, but it doesn’t fit in a land-based campaign. How will it move effectively on land? Your character should fit in enough that traveling with him or her isn’t an adventure in and of itself.
Nerdarchy’s Subreddit Submitters Highlight | Tips for Integrating Monster PCs into a Group
The other concern is how will your race be perceived socially in the campaign world. If you choose a monster that is universally hated by most other races in the campaign world you’re going to have a tough time of it. If the evil goblins have raided the town and your goblin PC walks into the general store to buy rations what’s going to happen?
In order to keep the game flowing smoothly you need a way to integrate your character into play without being a constant disruption. Will you work hard to earn the respect and trust of the townspeople? Will you wait outside town while your friends go shopping? Are the other players okay with you being a potential social liability? . . . “
Want to read the rest and put in your thoughts on the subject? Then come over to our subreddit: Nerdarchy- How to Stay Nerdy, join the conversation, and tell us what you think about “Tips for Integrating Monster PCs into a Group” Until next time, Nate the Nerdarch here recommending that you – Stay Nerdy!