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Alternate 5e NPC Stats: Guards and Soldiers
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Alternate 5e NPC Stats: Guards and Soldiers


1.1 Update: I realized that the average damage values presented for several of the attacks on these stat blocks were incorrect, so I have updated them. I also, after checking for clarification that the Dueling Fighting Style affects thrown melee weapons, have updated the damage values of several of the attacks.

Full description on my blog.  Since I made this free, please check it out :)

I separated these new stats into five tiers: Amatuer, Generic, Experienced, Veteran, and Exemplary.  If you look closely, you'll notice that their stats are nearly equivalent to those of a  level 1, level 2, level 3, level 4, and level 5 fighter with average ability scores respectively, with two notable differences: they lack the Second Wind ability, and their HP does not include the 1st-level bonus that player characters get.  The reason I decided to deny them these boons is twofold: first, because-as I stated before-adventurers are supposed to have some abilities that ordinary people don't, and second, because guards are most likely to appear in groups, and it would be impractical for a DM to keep track of which guards have used their Second Wind and which ones haven't.

Amatuer Guards are new to their job.  Generic guards are the most common, and any given guard you encounter will likely be in this tier.  Experienced guards are the second most common; they are separated from the generic guards by a few years of experience, and a battle or two survived.  Veteran guards are seasoned members of the guard, typically serving as captains or commanders.  They've seen enough fighting to go toe-to-toe with most bandits... or a relatively novice adventurer.  Finally, Exemplary guards are nearly adventurers in their own right.  They are highly sought-after as defenders for nobles and towns who can afford them.  If they serve a town that they grew up in, they are most likely the head of that guard, or second-in-command (if the leader his or herself has a fully flesh-out character sheet of their own).

I also separated each denomination into "Guard" and "Soldier" stats.  Guards are members of a city watch or are hired to protect a caravan or merchant.  They aren't keen on putting their lives on the line, and they prefer to engage in force, as their Protection fighting style reflects.  Soldiers, on the other hand, are part of a regular military.  They fight with conviction and bravery-in most cases-and are better at actually fighting one-on-one, as reflected by their Dueling fighting style.  While Amateur guards are not all that uncommon to see on town watches, Amateur soldiers are still in training and rarely seen on the front lines, and whereas a Veteran or Exemplary guard is likely the leader of his watch, a Veteran or Exemplary guard likely only commands a division of military forces, rather than an entire army.  The two classes have almost identical stats in the Amateur and Generic categories, so I made only one stat block to represent both (with the differences noted).  However, at third level, guards choose the Champion archetype, while soldiers pick the Battle Master archetype, so I do have separate stat blocks for them.

Please note that the challenge ratings of these characters are a little odd.  By all rights, the Amateur Guard should be a challenge rating 1/4 (seeing as CR is based on how difficult a creature would be against a party of four of the equivalent level, and as a level-1 character itself, the Amateur should be equal to 1/4 of the party in terms of fighting ability).  However, using the rules of calculation provided in the Dungeon Master's Guide, the Amateur Guard has CR 1/2.  Furthermore, the Generic Guard, which has double the HP of the Amateur and the ability to attack twice on one turn, is still a CR 1/2.  And the Exemplary Guard is only challenge rating 3, while the Exemplary Soldier is CR 4, despite the fact that they are both 5th-level fighters.  So, take the CR ratings with a grain of salt.

I also made 5 tiers of "Archer" as well, which, like soldiers, fight as part of the army or perform scouting for that army.  Veteran and Exemplary Archers typically don't lead military forces; they are, well, just really good Archers.

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Quentin B November 03, 2018 9:55 am UTC
This is really great I going to use this a lot in my campaigns
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File Last Updated:
September 26, 2016
This title was added to our catalog on September 18, 2016.