Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Adding ladies to D&D; or: Lady up your game!

I recently developed a plan to ensure my D&D games weren't just a bunch of male PCs and NPCs. Its pretty simple. I have a little list each game of the NPCs I might need to introduce. You might have this too. Don't have a list of all your NPCs? Make it. Then if you want to make sure your D&D game isn't a sausage party, follow these little tips:

1) Check if half or more of your NPCs are dudes.
2) If they are, make a coupe of them ladies.

Its literally that easy. If you're not as comfortable portraying a lady, you can lady your game up a bit by at least adding some ladies off camera or in the background. Maybe the previous party to explore an area was lead by a lady, or they find a log book written by a lady, or they're otherwise following the trail of a lady. An off-camera villain can also be a lady. In fact, just about any NPC could be a lady. You could even roll randomly to determine if the character is a lady: odd = dude, even = lady.

Once you have a couple ladies in the background, you can move onto having a major NPC or two be ladies. Try it out first with a shopkeeper: unless the adventurers are in a lady shop doing lady shopping, a lady shopkeeper probably has exactly the same motivations as a dude shopkeeper (and, honestly, a lady shopkeeper in a lady shop probably has the same motivations as a dude shopkeeper in a lady shop). Lady hirelings, lady henchmen, lady sages, lady specialists, and queens probably have almost exactly the same motivations as dude hirelings, dude henchmen, dude sages, dude specialists, and kings.

Once in a while, you might find that the sex of an NPC actually matters in the plot. That's the point where you can spend a minute deciding how the plots might be different depending on the sex of an NPC and let the most interesting plot dictate the gender of the NPC. 

No comments:

Post a Comment