How to Create Memorable Villains?

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How to Create Memorable Villains?

Post by VIRTUE » Thu May 01, 2014 9:27 am

During my hour long commute this morning I started thinking about what makes some of the great and memorable villains in comic books and comic book movies. I think a lot of it is that the villain have a great tie in with the heroes like Spiderman and Batman villains most of their backgrounds tie in with the hero quite well.
So how do you do that in a Super Hero RPG?
How do you tie your villains to your heroes? Is it during character creation or is it after the heroes have had a few adventures or is it a little of both?
How do you do it in your games? What suggestions do you have?

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Re: How to Create Memorable Villains?

Post by Monolith » Thu May 01, 2014 10:14 am

Some players will give their characters a hunted or rogue's gallery complication telling me who their main foes will be. Most of the time it comes down to playing, though. You use a villain in a particular way and it just clicks with one or more players so you bring him back and eventually it becomes an major foe. If you play the villain as being interesting and not just one dimensional the players will want to encounter him again.

If you're lucky you can possibly tie them in to a character's background. For example, the Green Goblin just started out as a Spiderman foe. After a few appearances we learn that GG is Norman Osborn, and tied to Peter via his friendship Harry. Because a villain can start out as a mystery you can eventually fit them into both aspects of the players' lives, and that makes them more memorable to the players. The original intent wasn't for Harry to be GG but it evolved into that over time to make a better and more personal story.

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Re: How to Create Memorable Villains?

Post by Hellhound » Fri May 02, 2014 6:27 pm

Well it could be done during character creation if any of your players select the complication of the enemy; otherwise if anyone have relationships as a complication the villain always can take as a hostages or do something against the family or friends of the hero (without actually knowing something of the character). This will certainly create that there is a tie between the villains and characters.

Some players feel obliged or bound to the enemies when they come to humiliate them in combat, either defeating or getting away, especially the characters that are considered invincible or stronger than all.

It is best to search for the background of your characters in order to relate in some way to the hero´s past or around her regular life.
Even a villain could have created a hero by giving her powers or vice versa!
The treachery of demons is nothing compared to the betrayal of an angel.