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Creating Memorable NPCs: Roll 2d10 and Use this Table of Quirks!

Make memorable NPCs by rolling two dice.

You know that coworker you has that has an odd little quirk? Sure, it is possible that it is cute, but it is more likely that it grates. Yet however it comes across, it is memorable.

Creating memorable NPCs (non-playable characters) is what you want to do for your D&D or Pathfinder games. No DM wants a NPC that is immediately forgotten or brushed over, simply to get into combat.

But creating memorable NPCs is tricky if your players throw you a curveball and you need a NPC on the fly. That’s when folks default to yet another gruff dwarf or no-nonsense bar maid.

But with the list below you can roll 2d10s and you have an instant NPC character quirk. Best, roll the dice 2 or three times and you’re creating a truly memorable NPC (albeit a slight oddball).

Creating memorable NPCs

  1. NPC rubs the back of his neck as he speaks. (Is he nervous? Was he hit?)
  2. Conceited, obnoxiously so.
  3. NPC has no fingernails (You learn he survived torture.)
  4. Jingles gold pieces in pocket.
  5. Says “hmmm hmmm” often. (Habit or is he that agreeable?)
  6. Asks rhetorical questions.
  7. Falsely claims he was an adventurer too.
  8. She nods often.
  9. She carries satchel filed with junk.
  10. Sweats.
  11. Shaving cuts on face (Interesting if this was a Dwarf who had shaved.)
  12. Military mannerisms, clear in how he carries himself.
  13. She has an animal claw scar that is highly visible.
  14. Always out of breath.
  15. Rolls “Rs” (Good luck to the DM roleplaying this!)
  16. She snorts when laughing (It’s endearing.)
  17. Complains of heartburn.
  18. Rings sewn all over his/her clothes.
  19. Clothes made of woven leaves, yet lives in town.
  20. Carries cloth covered basket (What is in there?)
  21. Spit polished bracelet that clearly holds personal meaning.
  22. Hard of hearing to hilarious results.
  23. NPC gives himself a different name every meeting.
  24. She blows stray hair out of eyes.
  25. Dude hooks thumbs in his belt when he stands.
  26. Sways nervously.
  27. Carries small lizard.
  28. Long manicured nails.
  29. Blind, but looks through familiar’s eyes.
  30. Instructs PCs in latest fashion, yet looks a little silly.
  31. Rubs large belly as he (she?) talks.
  32. Pouts.
  33. Calls PCs by wrong names consistently.
  34. Giggles endearingly.
  35. Wine colored birthmark highly visible on body.
  36. Polishes odd eyepieces, but never puts them on.
  37. Sunburned.
  38. Picks lint off PCs clothes.
  39. Always asks for a bite of whatever someone is eating.
  40. Has black eye.
  41. Mixes languages during every conversation.
  42. Keeps hand on PCs shoulder when speaking to them.
  43. Feeds crumbs to birds.
  44. Hands coppers to beggar kids.
  45. Has immaculately spotless boots.
  46. Rope burns around wrists.
  47. Hair dye on collar
  48. Armor is covered in strange runes.
  49. Nose bleeds.
  50. Refers to good ‘ole days in every conversation.
  51. Hopelessly optimistic.
  52. Has a heart shape cut into skin.
  53. Ogles opposite sex openly.
  54. Ink stained fingers.
  55. Gap between teeth.
  56. Always scratching a rash.
  57. Missing 7th finger.
  58. Rubs hands together when he speaks.
  59. She stares off when speaking.
  60. He has long pauses when speaking.
  61. Facial piercings.
  62. Tugs on ear.
  63. Rubs chin as in deep thought.
  64. Cleans nails with knife as he speaks.
  65. Single beard braid.
  66. Out of touch clothing (Perhaps even unusual for the environment.)
  67. Smells like horses.
  68. Smells like alcohol.
  69. Leaves in hair always.
  70. Sniffs the air.
  71. Unusual jewelry.
  72. Freckled.
  73. Highly superstitious.
  74. Loud talker (Or maybe close talker.)
  75. Makes puns.
  76. Makes plans.
  77. Is always chewing on a stick.
  78. Smacks palm with fist.
  79. Asks often about own appearance.
  80. Rubs palms on thighs.
  81. Invades personal space on every meeting.
  82. Repeats things back to you.
  83. Oily skin.
  84. Doesn’t let things go.
  85. Has long pauses before talking.
  86. Obvious cosmetics.
  87. Obvious wig.
  88. Belches often.
  89. Openly racist.
  90. Complements sincerely.
  91. Talks often about seeing the world some day.
  92. Always carries fresh cut flowers
  93. Has an engorged leech on hand.
  94. Keeps a goat on a leash.
  95. Sharpens knife incessantly.
  96. Always practicing a fire starting cantrip.
  97. Mutters to himself and twitches.
  98. Carves simple animal figurines for children.
  99. Has name monogrammed on the back of his tunic.
  100. Has a wizard hat covered in fish hooks.