In any encounter how matters go is pretty much a matter of attitude, and that has a lot to do with personality. In general different species have different personalities. Specifically different individuals will have different personalities. By and large wolves will tend to avoid you, but it is always possible to meet a wolf who will approach you as a long lost friend. You get right down to it, how they handle matters is up to the individual.
In general a species will tend to act as a group in a certain way. Among those ways could include:
- Aggressively Friendly
- Mildly Interested
- Very Cautious
- Aggressively Hostile
In addition there are matters such as; hungry, in heat or rut, and seeking safety. As an example one could meet some orcs, who in general tend to be very cautious. These particular orcs could be hungry and seeking safety, which could lead them to being friendly so long as they say the HPs as a potential source of assistance.
How party handles matters also plays a role. Are the HPs friendly, cautious, or hostile? How do they see the other side? Do they see goblins as a threat or a source of amusement? Are they cautious around ogres or belligerent.
As a rough guideline the JM or players could roll 2d6, with a roll below 7 indicating a negative response and so a negative adjustment in attitude. While a roll above 7 would mean a positive response and a positive adjustment in attitude.
For instance: The party meets a gnoll. Gnolls, being bonkers by all accounts, generally start out being aggressively friendly. But friendly in a way that could include pain and injury. And in this case this particular gnoll decides he is going to be aggressively hostile—the JM rolled a 2 on 2d6, indicating a very negative reaction.
Or the HPs could meet a friendly demon. Demons don’t have to be hostile. Demons can be friendly indeed, offering assistance and guidance. But the thing to remember is that demons as a group are manipulative, sneaky, and corrupting. Demons always look out for what benefits them, and if they can get you to buy into whatever they propose to do, then all the better for them. That means helping you save a village from a danger, then the demon will help you, but his assistance always comes at a price.
Keep in mind that some encounters will always be simple. Meeting a Vargaardian wolverine for example, for these animals tend to be cautious and most often react to how you behave with suspicion and aggression. Then again, he may actually be friendly, depending on how previous encounters have gone for him
The smarter the soul encountered the more complicated his behavior. We tend to see the ogre as being stupid and violent, but there are ogres smart enough to understand the value of subtlety and to practice it.
Then there is the matter of keeping play fun. That is, interesting. Which is best done by giving the players different experiences. Meeting a dockalfar band doesn’t have to end in violence, while encountering a party of elves won’t always be a pleasant one—.sometimes an elf’s optimism means he’s optimistic about trouncing you. And always remember that being optimistic in general doesn’t mean a person can’t get angry and out of sorts. While the generally gloomy orc can still have a sense of humor and be friendly.
My advice in general is, don’t constrain yourself and allow stereotyping to keep you on a certain path. You want those hobbits to be mean and rude? Then maybe they’ve just had a bad day and the HP’s just happened to show up at the right rime to get some grief. Or that fire drake just saw the runt of the litter actually take flight just when she thought it was a hopeless cause and was about to kill the pup so he wouldn’t suffer.
Always remember that Mythus is about adventure and adventures don’t always have to follow a certain set course. How you as the JM handle matters is your business, as it is the business of you players.
So don’t stereotype your Personas buy let them be individuals, and always consider current conditions, for there can be times when otherwise friendly gnomes maybe having a bad day and are looking for somebody to take it out on.
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