How to Run an EVIL RPG Campaign! (GM Tips w/ Matt Mercer)

How to Run an EVIL RPG Campaign! (GM Tips w/ Matt Mercer)


MATT: Hello! My name is Matthew Mercer.
I’m a voice actor and the Dungeon Master for Critical Role here at Geek & Sundry, and today’s wonderful
topic of GM Tips is curbing murder-hobo behavior and running evil campaigns. [music] No matter how much prep you do or how alluring
the heroics may be, and how strong the call to glory and justice might prove, sometimes the players
will give in to the id and become impulse-driven murder-hobos. A murder-hobo by the way is a player character
in a roleplaying game that has no home and wanders the land killing things and taking
all the shit off their corpses. While this style of play can occasionally lead
to some ridiculously funny scenarios, it can make it difficult to maintain a long-form respectful narrative
for the whole party and for you. However, there are a number of interesting and fun ways to develop
great roleplaying and story moments out of these scenarios that can also possibly curb perpetuating
such behavior in the future. Now many of these are written for fantasy games, but these notes
can be easily tailored to many other genres and settings. Here’s an example. The players get into an argument
with a merchant and end up stabbing him with a sword and killing him. You know
what I’m talking about; you’ve seen it happen. I’ve seen it happen. I’ve probably done it.
In the game. In the… game. Now consider the legal ramifications of such an act.
Will the party now try to hide the body and play it off like nothing happened? If so, do they succeed?
Or is there now a manhunt for a murderer within the city and the party is always dancing
around the rumor whenever it comes up? Do they begin to see wanted postings with characters
that look eerily familiar? Does the guard discover them and attempt to take them in for questioning?
If they go along, do they stand trial or will they attempt to break free of prison, leading to a fun prison
break adventure and leading the party into an outlaw-style journey where certain townships
are best avoided or done incognito. What if a very powerful investigator is hired
and finds them, besting the party with his men and dragging them to his office where he makes
them an offer that they have no choice in taking, one that involves doing an uncouth favor for
the same investigator? What if a family member of the slain hires a seer or a diviner, discovers
the murderer’s face, and hires a bounty hunter that is now hunting the PC for an ongoing
period of time, introducing a recurring villain to the campaign? Perhaps they rifle through the slain merchant’s
stuff and they discover he’s actually a very terrible person, like a cultist to Asmodeus and the like,
perhaps a higher-up within the order, and he’s likely to be summoned soon
to a gathering he was leaving for. Now if they just keep stabbing anything you
put in front of them, perhaps you should talk to the players about respecting the narrative that
you’ve worked so hard to construct. If they still seem negligent to your quest, just quickly
TPK them with a series of high-level guards and give them a whole epilogue on justice
and the rarely noble end of the murderer. Mind you, sometimes it can be fun for a group of
experienced players to communally give in to their dark side and decide to play a campaign
of morally dubious characters. Thus can begin the weird and fun experience
of running an evil campaign. [evil laugh] [cartoonish gunshot] Now, talk in advance with all the players and
have them coordinate characters that can have some semblance of working together in collaboration.
Lawful Evil as an alignment works well for this as respect for structure and rank aid in maintaining
party cohesion when everyone is being an evil f***. Now be aware, there are degrees of immorality,
not all of the same kind of evil, and not all players must be evil. A neutral individual among evil companions
can still serve the same purpose, and one can even start as a good character who slowly is corrupted
by their surrounding companions. Just check in with what kind of campaign the folks
want to play out. Is it more serious, dramatic, dark criminal underground story, or the sillier Saturday
morning cartoon show villain type story? Both are a lot of fun but make sure you’re
all on the same page before you get too deep into the nuts and bolts. Have players consider evil with limits, or a code of conduct.
It helps when defining your character what their boundaries are and what drove them to the darker side of life. Let that internal conflict lead some interested
inter-party encounters. Many “evil” folks don’t actually righteously consider
themselves evil at all, only pragmatic. As the GM, be prepared for a short campaign.
Don’t write a super extended story arc yet, let it organically grow from there, if it’s even meant to,
as most evil campaigns end up with PCs just killing each other. It’s part of the nature of the beast. Be very clear with your initial discussions
with the players about the level of mutually-approved player versus player possibilities in the game
should they arise. However, it may develop into a very interesting long running mafia-like
story if you run it very carefully and the players are on board. Now this is an important one. Make sure
you and all of your players are clear on what elements of evil you are comfortable with, and which
elements everyone is not comfortable with. You want to avoid a circumstance where a PC
eventually pushes things too far and makes it very awkward or too dark to continue enjoying the game.
Define those limits early. If any time a player begins to push those boundaries, you are allowed
to as a GM or player to put a pause on it and check in with the others, just to be safe. Another cool thing is to consider a plot that enables
the PCs to work towards a political foothold within a town or city. As we well know, evil generally
flourishes when business, politics, and civilization are involved. The glimmer of a promise of power, wealth, servants,
and spies can entice any player’s dark side. You can also play with existing storytelling tropes
and turn them on their head. You can have the party encounter upstart adventurers who’ve hunted
them down to stop their evil plots. Or have them encounter dark entities that offer a chance
to make dealings with them as opposed to fighting them. Perhaps the heroes return
from a grand quest where they save the town in danger, recovering a great holy artifact,
and your party is imparted with the mission to corrupt the artifact, turn the heroes against each other,
and eventually enslave that very town they saved. Eventually, offer up some serious dangers to
all things good and evil, where the party must team up with more morally high-grounded interest
to ensure both sides’ survival. This can lead to some very cathartic vengeance on those prissy
paladins when the danger finally passes. Anyway, I hope these tips have been useful to you.
You can check out more GM’s Tips episodes here on geekandsundry.com. My name is Matthew Mercer,
thank you for watching and I’ll see you on the internet. [music]

100 thoughts on “How to Run an EVIL RPG Campaign! (GM Tips w/ Matt Mercer)

  1. Murder Hobo: Pretty much everyone playing Adventurer's League now…no real point to play anything else because there isn't much in the way of rewards that vary by handling it.

  2. My friend Kyle killed a random NPC and a city guardsmen came by and said "What's going on?" and Kyle picked up the NPC's severed head and said "This. This is what happened." Our party was thrown in the dungeons and we were able to find a legal, non violent way out. However, Kyle went over to the toilet in the dungeon and asked the DM how much shit was in the toilet. The DM went "It is backed up by decades of manure." So Kyle lit it on fire and blew up the entire tower. That encounter is Canon in our campaign. It is written as "When Kyle Did 9/11"

  3. My DM tried to get the town guard to stop my party's murder hobbo in CoS. It ended in a genocide and eventually allying with Strahd to escape Barovia without helping anyone there.

  4. Hey wait I have one of those goblets. Only my one looks like a skull with a helmet, but I remember seeing those other versions.

  5. Mine wasn't meant to be, but then the mayor just had to not let us take over the town and make it communist, so much murder

  6. Lawful evil is the best option. Because without a personal code that prevents betrayal of allies, most evil campaigns fall apart.

  7. Played a campaign once in 3.5, where the DM encouraged us to pick playable races from the monster manual. We started at 6th level. The world was one in which a xenophobic human empire had spread across the continent and hunted all other sentient races to use as slaves and test subjects for magic experiments. Despite being monstrous races the DM insists on no evil characters. One player wants to be the assassin class. At first the DM says no as being evil is a requirement for taking that class. The player argues that there are real world assassins that aren't necessarily evil. Such as assassins in service to a neutral monarchy. And that some assassins kill out of a sense of duty rather than for profit. So the DM concedes. The thing is that those were all really good points and it should have been able to work. And the alignment that the player listed on his sheet was true neutral. Unfortunately he then preceded to play the character chaotic evil. He constantly tried killing NPC's over minor insults or inconveniences. Several times threatened other player characters for disagreeing with him. Long story short eventually the player missed two games in a row and the DM took the opportunity to have him conspire with a group of bandits to rob and murder us. The entire party completely ignored the bandits most taking attacks of opportunity to rush the assassin and just annihilate him. The rest of the bandits freaking out at out brutality just dropped their weapons and surrendered. When the player came back the DM told him what happened to his character and offered to let him build a new character if he could agree to not play evil. He got pissy and left never to come back. P.S. my character was a homebrew psionic knight. Basically imagine a Paladin limited to medium armor, with access to low level psionic powers instead of low level divine magic. I was lawful good. The DM slipped me several notes early in the campaign to try to curb his behavior. Honestly I was going to start doing that anyway purely for roleplaying reasons. Despite my best efforts to try to salvage his character, even going so far as to use a healing potion on him at one point while he was bleeding out. Effectively saving his life and giving him ample opportunity to see the error of his ways and provide him roleplaying reasons to become the Noble Assassin he claimed to be. But he just flat out refused to learn anything or have any character growth.

  8. I'm writing a campaign where the player can do what they want. Anywhere they go will be a story point. Good or evil, there'll be a plan in the end.

  9. Good point on limiting the evil.
    Murdered the mayor's wife: we're Gucci
    Murdered the mayor's wife then raped her corpse: might be pushing it there chief

  10. Remember sometimes Evil PCs may not see themselves as Evil after all you can not make an omelette without breaking some eggs, Thanos is a great example of this

  11. Can i run an alignment check by all of you reading this?

    So i had a character who was a Dragonborn Warlock of Tiamat, and her work mostly consisted of running around getting drunk and lighting something, or someone, on fire. People in the arena boo her because she won't kill a weretiger she's attracted too? Burn them. Rival group of adventurers bullying her favorite barkeeper? Torture two of them and give the last one an acid breath kiss of death. Asked to clear a bandit hideout that happens to be an antique building in town? Burn it to the ground and get mauled by the pet owlbear they had inside. Point is, where does she fall on the alignment chart, because the party hasn't been able to agree. Some say she's lawful evil only doing seriously heinous things when provoked, others say neutral evil because she's simply a violent alcoholic who can't exactly be held accountable for her actions, and other's still say that she's chaotic evil because she disproportionately "punishes" people, (slices a guy's entire arm off for cutting in line at a busy blacksmith vs force feeding a man a soup made from his 8-year old son because the man said something mean about a party member's child, also slamming a vampire into a wall so hard he basically disintegrated for trying to be diplomatic in the middle of a maze we had been trapped in for hours filled with violent creatures)

    So what do you all think?

  12. Yeah you really need to talk about how evil your campaign is going to get before your group goes down that road. Trust me its no fun when everybody is expecting Mark Hamil's Joker and and your Bard suddenly goes full Heath Ledger and now everything is on fire and that NPC you spent the last four sessions turning into a True Evil monster in an attempt to start a whole "is it ok to use evil to hunt a worse evil?' thing, has become a henchman and is now helping Gavin turn all the other PC's into wall art. Which was very thoroughly described by a friend that nobody wants to play with anymore.

  13. Currently playing a N/E Cleric of a "dead" dragon god of the cosmos. He carries the crystallized soul of said dragon god as his holy symbol. Death and Magic domains. While he is evil, he's had a traumatic childhood. He instills fear in the party of evil guys. The only party member that "likes" him is the C/E fighter.

  14. The best mop & broom for dnd? High level _____ at an early level.

    Edit: I once joined a group that was 3 sessions in. All I know is that they needed a healer so I went chaotic good cleric. Once I joined I found out the group ranged from chaotic neutral to chaotic evil…………….. I ran away and killed our rouge so he wouldn't chase me.

  15. An evil campaign sounds fun. The only evil character I’d ever imagine would be allowed is a lawful evil person. One with perhaps sadistic or cruel hearted nature who uses the law for his and his party’s benefit.

  16. I played an evil pirate campaign where we spent the first five levels getting the screaming shits whipped and tortured out of us until level 5, it sucked. Oh, the mutiny we made against that captain!

  17. Yeah I hear ya on the “checking in” for evil comfort levels… I’m the guy that goes too far with it.

  18. I’m planning an evil character who I’d love to play sometime.
    They’re a tiefling Ranger (Horizon Walker) who hunts demons and actively works to destroy cults devoted to demons, but does so as an agent of the Nine Hells seeking to weaken the Abyss’ footholds on the Material Plane and turn the tide of the Blood War in favour of the Infernal legions.
    They’re helpful and respectful to their teammates, and even kind towards those in need of help. However, they are ruthless and inflexible in dealing with their foes, and if you are no longer any use to them, they will dispatch you without a second thought.

  19. Murder hobo is the way to go when the GMs keep running the same pointless 1-4 session games over & over again.

  20. evil characters work together, albeit differently from how good ones do. good characters are usually easy to gather in the name of honor or whatever, but evil characters only work together when it is convenient or when they have to and they will probably fight a lot. theyre not too different from good groups, they just skip the honor and glory speeches and move right onto the immediate gratifications. "whats in it for me" discussions, etc. its up to the gm to keep things moving along and to proide a bigger stronger common threat to focus on

  21. Having participated in my first evil campaign in the mid-80s, I would recommend that you need some sort of controlling agent who will act as a quest giver. It could be a crime boss or a demon that the member of the parties work for or serve. This agent will prevent players from becoming stupid murder hobo losers by telling them what to do, what not to do, and holding them accountable for each. For example, crime bosses are "shot callers" who tell you who gets whacked, and they don't want anything extra because it attracts attention. Demons will require services in a similar way, and I doubt you will want to betray them. Another possibility is an evil quest that has specific things that the players will have to do to complete it, some of which will involve committing evil acts — perhaps like in the movie "The Ninth Gate" where the villain is trying to summon the devil. (HP Lovecraft's stories can provide some great ideas in this realm too.) In any case, if you want to make a campaign work, you should do some research — watch documentaries or maybe even crack open a book to become literate and knowledgeable on the kind of setting and characters that you will use to create your story. I think that is the biggest problem with D&D as it is presented today — fantasy illiteracy, which leads to a dependence upon rule books and crazy voice acting with farcical characters acting like they are running through a video game rather than well written stories or adaptations of real world scenarios in to generate ideas.

  22. pushing it too far and making it awkward!?!…
    ok..
    ran an evil dnd3.5…5 players each with uniquely cool 5th-6thish level badass.
    began the game in the forest. they were to seek out a couple lawful and good guilds and destroy them for trifling with the powerful lords of evil….
    2 miles down the road and 10 minutes into the game, the players encountered a lone woodsmans cabin….dusk and rainy, a player approached the rickety door.
    the second eldest woodsman's son opened the door, the player playing a vrock antipaladin/blackgaurd drops his human guise. in it for the most shocking and gruesome scene he could think of, he snatches the child at the door up by the leg, and burst into the cabin, beating to death the woodsmans family with said child (like a club, until it fell apart due to use) in far more graphic detail than i care to thumbtype here.
    4 rounds of game and 16 minutes later the entire table just kinda sat there in silence…
    the described graphicness of the scene left several players not wanting to continue after the incredibly descriptive murder of a woodsman and his family at suppertime….
    gave out xps and adjourned for the session (the only session)
    everyone left a bit broken and sullen…
    kind of like how your left feeling after completing fallout3 or elder scrolls Morrowind…
    ….poor allen quit playing altogether…
    in retrospect…the whole thing ( especially the looks on everyone elses face, unprepared for what just unfolded) was delightfully funny and awkward..
    …..but only much later..
    have run evil pcs since, but yes, use the backstory to limit to some degree what and what not these evil beings can or would be willing to do for your games longevity….but that still would not have prevented the above described occurance

  23. I once started out as a Good character, a sorcerer. The enemy of that story abducted his fiance (NPC).
    My sorcerer couldn't handle the emotional pain and soon resorted to desperate and rash actions.
    Soon enough, those type of actions were no longer desperate, but simply became an efficient method to getting information about the fiance's whereabouts.

    Those desperate actions became the norm.
    Never did he realize how evil he had become.

    Unfortunately his rash actions soon led to his demise, and we never got to see the full potential of his evilness…

  24. some friends and i once GM'd a campaign over a three day con, where a good and an evil party both played the same adventure, not knowing that they did, only to clash in an epic pvp final battle to the death. what fun.

  25. I had a high elf mage that turned twisted by the study of diseases (especially magical ones) that was a complete species racist. Saw humans in the same light as goblinoids, dwarves as only slightly better than humans.. liked halflings ok, though. But he came to a human town having a harvest festival, and found a little (8 year old or so) girl playing at the edge of town. He gave her a couple of pieces of candy. the first one made her immune to, but a carrier of the second, which infected everyone nearby (airborne) with a torturous, wasting plague named ghoul fever. In the last hours, the victim would scream, rant, rave, claw their own eyes out, claw their flesh, and try to bite hunks off anyone nearby – save someone who'd eaten the first candy, all the while in burning pain, with an onset of a day.. the girl didn't realize she spread it to everyone at the harvest festival, including those 'passing through' to other towns. after the bloodbath was over, and the little girl was sobbing in the middle of the town – he rode in, looked down at her and said 'this is why you don't take candy from strangers. this was all your fault.' and left her behind, smiling as her sanity snapped and she screamed into the night.

    she eventually caught up with him with the idea of vengeance and he wound up casting a simple spell on her (suggestion) that made her regard what he said as a 'good idea' so long as it sounded reasonable and not immediately self-destructive. over and over again, until he had fully brainwashed her into believing that she owed him her life, (because he gave her the immunity candy) and that he made her stronger than she ever would have been otherwise (by making her want to extract vengeance enough to pursue him for a decade) so, she owed him everything in her life.. she became his hopelessly devoted consort/slave/guardian/right hand and eventually his wife.. married by a dark priest of a pestilent deity of disease and murder… they became a blight upon the land, and by the end of the campaign, were still undefeated. They became epic level villains in another campaign, where she'd become an assassin, and he'd added flesh-warping to his skills.

  26. So I'm running a campaign where my group were forced to join the assassins guild where we were all tortured to become emotionless lucky for my character who's already been though worse torture he only went from chaotic good to chaotic neutral my high elf on the other hand he's gone from lawful good to neutral evil and the worst part about all of this was because of one bad roll

  27. Evil characters and campaigns have ALWAYS led to one thing – intra-party fights. As soon as someone picks up a d20 and attacks another PC, I get up and leave.

  28. There’s a Bounty on character Theron, a chaotic neutral ranger/Hunter dark-elves. I captured female dark elves who was selling slaves, and for a while she was my prisoner. But I made a deal with her to help our campaign on a quest and I will let her go. I did. And she put a bounty on my head of $100,000 silver pieces. And my character has 4hp remaining, I had 130
    also 2 failed death saves. Theron might not make it. This is my first character. I’ll be sad to see him go.

  29. Best game I ever ran was a D&D Conan style game where everyone started at 3rd level but I gave everyone two levels of rogue and told them they were all from the same thieve’s guild. They weren’t ‘cackling’ evil but they were happy to murder and steal.

  30. One thing I would add for crumbing murderhobos is to have their victim come back as an undead, especially something nasty like Revenant.

    Love tips for running the evil game, especially one for discussing tollerable levels of evil beforehand. This is also great advice for evil characters in all games. I remember once running an one-shot horror game with PCs being children (years before Stranger Things became popular). Halfway through the session I had to tell one of players he is acting like an asshole and creeping out everyone else, GM included. He says "I'm just in character, my character is mischevious". Me: "Yes, but….try to think more Dennis the Menance and less Eric Cartman."

  31. Hard cut after every sentence. Stop it. They are not punctuation. It detracts from what you are say in and is a bit stupid.

  32. lol i skinned my friend because he was a half dragon, and i wanted dragon leather armor. i was able to use regen on them so they could get their skin back. after all i am a cleric and he is my "friend"

  33. I once ran a campaign where the PCs were hired by the evil empire to break up a marriage between the Prince of the Good human kingdom and the princess of the elves (the marriage was supposed to end hundreds of years of war and the evil empire couldn't have that). The main antagonist was a Gandalf-type meddling wizard named 'The Seer' The PC's bard seduced the prince, their anti-paladin jousted his way to the final match of the wedding tourney before throwing the match so that the Princess's secret true lover could win, then the PC's rogue snuck into the camp of some elven anti-human extremists, then framed the Seer when they got caught leading the elven extremists to attack the Seer's Castle and break up the wedding, only for the PCs to swoop in, kill everyone who wasn't dead yet, and blame the elven terrorists.

  34. I always ask people what they think of as evil, I never think of an evil person as the loony in the padded corner going rawwwwr there're too many types of evil

  35. Why is it that whenever I hear someone else talking about an evil campaign, they talk about the players' eventually killing each other? Am I the only player who constantly plays mainly evil characters who are perfectly fine with the rest of the party?

  36. Mentions stabbing and killing merchants “You know what I’m talking about. You’ve seen it happen. I’ve seen it happen. I’ve probably done it! …In the game! In the game.”

    I know Matt is an actor, but I like to think certain lines like that are ad libbed at least a little. XD

  37. Not that it matters, but hobos are nomads, actually jumping unto freight-trains to travel without paying. The territorial bums & vagrants make the regular homeless people. There was a movie about an FBI agent hunting a serial hobo-style killer: https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0119210/reference

    Book of Vile Darkness wasn't the only spawning forth worthy ideas. Still, when plenty of people fail to handle them, then they really may fruition more with a group not freshly formed. Is D&D 6.0 already announced?

  38. I'm learning to not murder hobo as I play a double fey class touched lizardfolk in an evil campaign. I decided that rather than "random murder" he would embody the fey's love of chaos. So now he just does what he thinks would be the most fun to him. Sometimes that's breaking a guys legs with a rock while the party robs him, sometimes it's cutting off a dudes head, taking his gold, and giving it to the local starving people. Whatever would upset those in power I guess is kinda how he wants it, cause he thinks that those are the ones who would appreciate a good joke. Even when the joke is coming form a fey touched unfeeling monster.

  39. I’m planning to make a story where the team start looking like good guys, but at some point they’ll figure out that they’re actually more like the “evil” side.

    But like a “the horde” or “noxus” evil

  40. I cannot really get my head around ‘evil’ as in the real world most times evil acts are committed by those who think they are good.
    It works if you have a moral framework with Gods or powerful entities making the alignment have structure. Like icons in 13th age.
    All societies have moral codes, characters to break it need to defend their position. A use a rule I call GM karma, if players act as life is cheap then don’t be surprised if the GM does. If they show mercy then the world can as well. Characters should get a reputation, as your u level up you get known. Get known as a murderer don’t be surprised if a powerful Paladin and crew smash you to pulp.

  41. The campaign i am in now, has me stuck with murder hobo's….not really a fan. I cannot really get to know any of the pc's or build lasting relationships with them cause well, they will be dead soon. My evil character was inspired by the movie "The god father". Sure i am capable of violence and arranging peoples deaths, manipulation, bribery etc etc.But it must serve a purpose. It must have some form of business involved, and i never make it personal…..The rest of my group murders every cook and prostitute they can find. Kind of annoying, because they get me to do the clean-up. Also had to commit more murders to cover-up the previous murders. ugh.

  42. Joke's on you. Every PC is evil. Every. Single. One of them.

    Hide your loot. Hide your NPCs, because they killin EVERYBODY.

  43. I did one where it was based on a flash freeze ice age with a survival element. I wanted my players to go evil and try and take over the world. No one wanted to at first (peace loving hippies). I thought hmmm and made a yeti making machine that makes yeties out of genetic material from living creatures (and have selected attributes from said creature).
    It was funny seeing how quickly they went pure evil after feeding kittens to the yeti genetic blender machine just because someone wanted super fluffy yetis. Suddenly villages were getting just set on fire an most of wales was taken over by 6 bffs with loads of yetties … then they started trying to put each other in the machines and it all turned to anarchy and everyone died.

  44. I still remember running an ongoing set of adventures for a player whose character was Lawful EVIL.
    His philosophy was HIS rules were all that mattered and the only thing that was worthy of respect was POWER. If you didn't have the strength to back up your actions then you were subject to the whims of stronger personages.
    He had a very devilish outlook and was very brutal when exacting revenge for perceived disrespectful behavior, but he would often offer the person a way out in exchange for their signature, in blood, on a contract with very specific wording that allowed him to use it as currency when dealing with creatures from the lower planes whose loyalty he might need to undertake activities that he preferred not be easily traced back to him. (His job analyzing corporate contracts made his wording incredibly hard to corrupt and use in a manner he did not foresee)
    All in all it was a very interesting campaign that lasted many years. He often had a phrase… WWZD. What would Zweifel do? Any time he started thinking about that, I knew things were going to get tense pretty soon for the rest of the party.

  45. My players were killing everyone so I changed important npc name to Tod Howard made him unkillable due to some rare disease called glitch and he summoned dremora lord(pit fiend)when they attack him him was hilarious xD

  46. As a DM who has been running an evil campaign: DON'T.

    Legit advice though, if your players will start acting chaotic evil, you can just use the game world to realistically penalize such behaviour, without it seeming unfair to the players. Then their characters will act more subtly with their evil.
    Also evil characters usually have personalities and goals too, and by setting up interesting goals for them, they can still have adventures that feel satisfying. Watching them set up schemes is pretty interesting.

    For example, my group met this cult of mercy and love, whose leader was a messiah-like figure who hid from the authorities and only sent his apostles to foment rebellion against the authoritarian government. They didn't even intend to get rewarded, they just heard someone trying to do good and wanted to stop it. Lo and behold, one of them thought to capture the man after the battle (he was protected by a pretty powerful angel), and they brought the guy to the authorities and got rewarded.

    I try to set things up so that my players will want something to gain, so they will strive towards that goal, instead of just trying to kill everything. Now there is a dispute of inheritance, but they might try to usurp the noble title for themselves. Evil characters usually want power instead of power trips.

    Also if you have an NPC that you don't want them to kill, set up a defence: he lives in a place where weapons aren't allowed, he has uncanny dodge or a magic armor, or he's a minor image or hologram. Heck, you can just tell your player to roll and they are likely to fail that as well.

  47. One of the best Lawful Evil characters I've seen was actually in a video game. Ammon Jerro in Neverwinter Nights 2. He was a Lawful Evil Warlock who attained his power through hellpacts. He was a "the ends justify the means" sort of guy, who had dedicated his life to stopping the return of the King of Shadows, and believed that whatever evil he had to do was justified because it prevented the return of an even greater evil that would literally destroy the entire land.

  48. I am currently in a evil campaign in water deep with my dragonborn paladin for a year now. If I die I'll be so sad. Have almost died 3 times now

  49. One of my favorite fantasy characters was a little goblin inventor ostracized by his clan as insane bc his inventions actually worked as intended. Instead of the fabulous failures commonly seen among the clan.

  50. My Chaotic Evil,Half-Orc Druid Is More Of A Murder Nomad: She Will Stay In The Forest Of One (VERY Unlucky Village) As A Way To Gather The Sacrifices She Requires To Keep Her Power (Power Given To Her By "The Dark Spirits Of Nature" (Read: Unseen Lovecraftian Horrors That Grant Power To The Truly Dark And Psychologically Tormented) Who Made The Deal With Her That She Will Be Given Insane Amounts Of Power Over Nature,But With The Price Tag Of One Humanoid Sacrifice Every Full Moon Or Else She Loses Her Power Entirely) And Then Simply Moves On To The Next Village Once She Runs Out (Her Very Small But Very Mighty Army Of Pure-Blooded Orc Henchmen Tailing Behind Her). I Love My Chaotic Evil,Half-Orc Druid. <3

  51. Figuring out what level of evil you are comfortable with is absolutely critical!!!
    One of the campaigns I played in, I had to outright murder a hysterical child and that did not set well with a "mama bear" player at our table…. my character was true neutral and this was the only way to save the town from a giant ass bomb the child was calling down due to the machinations of an evil god… so my character did what he had to as he was the only one who could/would take the "evil" action for the greater good.
    That game broke up shortly after that session but it was most definitely a lesson in the criticality of discussing how much (and what type of) evil could be allowed in a given campaign.

  52. I remember in my campaign i had a royal family with 4 heirs, 2 that were slimeballs, 1 princess who had an attitude problem and the missing heir to the throne who they couldn't gather much info on as he went adventuring(more on him later). If my party decided to kill the princess the missing prince would break his oath of redemption(that he was doing for his family) and go on a bloodhunt for the party. Luckily my party decided to not be murdeehobos this time around and only killed one of the slimeballs the other dying to a vexed wizard

  53. So my friend recently started a sandbox campaign with mostly new players. With all the possibilities offered to us and yet no clear sense of direction it didnt take us long to become the most evil motherf*ckers his world has ever seen. Enslavement, spreading disease and goblin eugenics are the norm over here! Oh yeah we started a goblin empire…

  54. One of my favorite one shots I ever played- DM asked if I could play a paladin. I said yes, bc I love playing them. The game begins, and the set up is that my paladin is escorting the rest of the party (all murderhobos) to a fantasy max security prison, while the others try to escape this fate. Shenanigans ensue. It ended up going into 3 sessions, and my paladin eventually created a bounty hunter guild employed by murderhobos.

  55. I was thinking of running an evil campaign with the party as a squad of orcs on a mission from the higher ups. Then I saw this video. Thanks

  56. I’m going to play a evil campaign this summer and I was hoping if anyone could tell me any healer that work well as evil

  57. Now I get why my DM calls the group murder hobos…. seems to be wide spread. It is just unfortiounate that the DM gets pissed easily and 1 of our players too, so the player allways makes unfriendly comments, which the DM returns through the characters even stronger and the player just makes it worse. Also the DM gives out Questlines that make it impossible to return, now we are wanted everywhere and have no chance of getting into any city, since the difficulty 15 stealth checks are pretty impossible for us, since we need the magical heavy armour/weapon to survive the last boss (probably buffed elder black dragon) and magical items are forbidden in the whole country.
    Of couse the DM blames only the players, for being hated everywhere.
    I really think of quitting the group.

  58. I have two sides to every campaign and they could be considered relatively evil and relatively good. I've had PC's try to be absolutely one of the other but that was self-destructive to the general group they were in thus limiting just how good/evil they were capable of being.

  59. 2:25. Matthew Mercer. my friend group does not TPK very subtly and instead of guards they throw up to 3 tarrasques at the party

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