A character with this Disadvantage has a nonplayer character friend, companion, or associate who often gets into trouble, requiring the character to protect or save him. You can also use Dependent Non-Player Character (DNPC) to simulate fans, villainous siblings, or sidekicks — in short, anyone the character feels he has to look out for.

The value of this Disadvantage depends upon several factors. The first is how competent the DNPC is in relation to the character — the less competent the DNPC is, the greater his value.

The second is how oft en the DNPC gets involved in the character’s adventures (some DNPCs are more accident-prone or nosy than others). Others include whether the DNPC possesses Skills or other abilities useful to the character and whether the DNPC knows about the character’s adventuring career.

The player must determine who the DNPC is before the campaign begins and give the GM a full description. Th e GM can then help develop the DNPC’s personality, Characteristics, and Skills. The GM might even give the DNPC some Disadvantages, thus making him more interesting. Sometimes the player may leave the DNPC entirely up to the GM, letting the DNPC be a surprise. DNPCs can also change from time to time, possibly even every adventure (“a date in every port,” so to speak).

At the GM’s option, in some cases the DNPC may even be an entire group of people the character has to look out for (his parents, his siblings, all of his neighbours, or the like); if so, he gets + 5 Character Points for every x2 NPCs covered by the same DNPC Disadvantage, since it’s more difficult to protect multiple NPCs.

A DNPC should have weaknesses so he needs to be protected. Remember, a DNPC is a Disadvantage. He might help the character once in a while, but on the whole he just causes trouble. If a DNPC is too helpful, or is just an excuse for the character to have access to some Skills he hasn’t paid for, the character shouldn’t get any points for the Disadvantage (or should even pay points for the NPC — see Contact and Follower). A character cannot take the same NPC as a Contact and a DNPC, or as a Follower and a DNPC, unless the GM specifically permits him to.

The GM should determine at the beginning of an adventure whether the DNPC is involved. This may mean the DNPC is kidnapped by villains, falls into a deep pit, discovers something the character would prefer to keep hidden, becomes involved in some mundane situation requiring the PC’s involvement, stumbles into a dangerous situation, or just plain gets into trouble.

If a DNPC dies, there are several ways for the character to provide a substitute Disadvantage. Which one works best depends on the nature of the character’s personality and the situation in the campaign. Th e character can find a new DNPC (provided by the GM), or gain the equivalent Character Points in a Psychological Limitation related to the DNPC and/or his death — a desire for revenge, underconfidence and feelings of inadequacy, violent rage, depression, or the like. Alternately, he may begin Hunting the person who killed his DNPC.

Value The DNPC is…
10 Incompetent (-20 points or lower)
5 Normal
0 Slightly Less Powerful than the PC
- 5 As powerful as the PC
- 5 DNPC has useful noncombat position or skills
+ 5 DNPC is unaware of character’s adventuring career/Social Limitation: Secret Identity
Value Appearance
+ 5 8 – (Infrequently)
+ 10 11 – (Occasionally)
+ 15 14 – (Frequently)
Value Number Of DNPCs
+ 5 Group DNPC: for every x2 DNPCs

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