Party Romance?

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Hey everybody, I was curious what great stories you have from your D&D 4e campaigns on this. 

Who has one of your characters fallen in love with or gotten romantically involved with during the game?

Can it be done organically, subtlely and tastefully?

I was inspired by the Dragon Age video game's romance options to write up today's Leonine Roar D&D blog article, Romancing the Party, on this. 

So like always, please feel free to share your stories and ideas either here or there! 

Thank you!
LEONINE ROAR : Amp Up Your D&D Game : Visit my D&D blog :: FASTER COMBAT : Crush Your Combat Grind
Years and years ago...

One of our female players' characters fell in love with an NPC.  Unbeknownst to her, the NPC was a lich.  At one point in the campaign, she pledged her heart to the NPC.  The lich obliged...  by removing her heart.  She lived as long as the heart lived, and he kept it in his possession.

The party then spent the next several weeks (real life weeks, which equated to about 20 sessions) hunting the lich down, eventually destroyed him and retrieved her heart, which he had kept in a jar amidst many other hearts in jars.  She had to always keep her heart safe from harm at that point, always at risk in its fragile new home.

Celebrate our differences.

Romance, whether with an NPC or another PC, can always be done tastefully and well, depending on the maturity of the people on either side.

In an old 3.5 game, I played a warlock who hailed from a nation widely considered evil by the other people in the world.  Women and non-humans were useful only as slaves, and the like.  My character, however, never quite fit into that line of thinking, though he tried when he was younger.  After the ritual meant to sacrifice him to the god of Evil in the campaign world, he fled the country, and he dropped his surname so that no one could find him.

In his travels, he decided to make some money by accompanying a caravan headed for a snowed-in village in the mountains.  Also on this caravan was a woman fighter (another PC).  She was attractive, certainly.  But what really got to him was how she was so totally unlike the women he had known back in his home country.  She could not only hold her own in a fight, but she was as skilled a fighter as he had ever seen.  That's when it started.

He found himself watching her in combat rather than fully paying attention to what he was doing (this gave some IC reason for my rather consistently poor rolling at the time).  Anything or anyone that dared to touch her became the target of his ire (which, after the switchover to 4E and his conversion to a hexblade, became considerable).

Brymeon himself was an attractive (but not bishy) man, who took after his mother than his father.  Phaedra noticed him, too.  And she took some pleasure in watching him solve problems with more than just his combat prowess, even if his powers sometimes seemed a bit ... dark.  The banter between the two was stimulating, as well.

Eventually, though, after a particularly hard-fought campaign in this beleaguered village, the two decided enough was enough and ended up in bed together.  And against a wall.  And on the floor.  The actual event itself was not RPed, of course.  But it happened.

I can see the two actually staying together over time, if the campaign were to continue.  I think they're different enough to remain interesting, but similar enough to find a common bond to share as a couple.  Besides, the eventual revelation of Brymeon's home country could cause a rather interesting wrench into things that would be fun to play out.
I think PC <-> NPC romance is fine. I've seen it work several times with interesting and sometimes comical results. But PC <-> PC romance situations, unless within the setting of a strong RL friendship or marriage is asking for real trouble.

You may know ALL the rules, but I KNOW the Spirit of the Game.

Eh, I really only think PC to PC romance works if it's either played really light hearted, or the two PCs want/have a relationship with each other. NPC to PC works fine, if you don't mind ignoring the fact that beauty of an Elven mage is played by a male DM. =P
I think PC <-> NPC romance is fine. I've seen it work several times with interesting and sometimes comical results. But PC <-> PC romance situations, unless within the setting of a strong RL friendship or marriage is asking for real trouble.


Like I said, it all comes down to the maturity of the people involved.  In my story above, the female fighter in question is played by the DM's fiance.

That said, I wouldn't go to an Encounters game (for example) and start hitting on the token female character in the group.  There is a certain amount of trust involved in that kind of roleplay (I'm not talking about that kind).  It's easy to cross the line from good RP to creepiness when that line's not in the same place for two people.

So, yeah, I agree.  You have to know the other person well enough for that trust to be there.  Otherwise, it can get pretty uncomfortable really quickly. 
Yeah....No.
I think PC <-> NPC romance is fine. I've seen it work several times with interesting and sometimes comical results. But PC <-> PC romance situations, unless within the setting of a strong RL friendship or marriage is asking for real trouble.


Like I said, it all comes down to the maturity of the people involved.  In my story above, the female fighter in question is played by the DM's fiance.

That said, I wouldn't go to an Encounters game (for example) and start hitting on the token female character in the group.  There is a certain amount of trust involved in that kind of roleplay (I'm not talking about that kind).  It's easy to cross the line from good RP to creepiness when that line's not in the same place for two people.

So, yeah, I agree.  You have to know the other person well enough for that trust to be there.  Otherwise, it can get pretty uncomfortable really quickly. 


Yeah. We had a 3E group where a my friend and his girlfriend were both playing, and when they broke up and She started going with another of the Players, things got out of hand In Game. Ultimately she decided to not play with us anymore. But not before hard feelings and significant in game damage was done.

You may know ALL the rules, but I KNOW the Spirit of the Game.

Works fine if it isn't in the forefront of the campaign.  My (male) roommate plays a female changeling, and he says his character has a crush on one of the other pc's, which is pretty funny.

The biggest risk inherent in romance is that it places a character in the spotlights and as such care has to be taken that it does not become too much part of the game just as with anything else that places once character in the spotlights. It also greatly depends on the group you are gaming with. Personally I have seen it work well only once, and weirdly enough that was a PC<>PC relation and it was done mostly off-stage at that. The few other times I tried it, either the player itself did not know how to act upon it or more often the rest acted with a bit jallousy. Just as in RL it opens the PC/player to a lot of teasing ;) Of course, there is also the inherent fear the DM will abuse the relationship. Weirdly enough, in one of the attempts it were actually the players who placed the love interest in risk. An evil noble family (and the PCs were well aware the family were worshippers of Tiamat) proposed an exchange of hostages, and I had fully expected the PCs to say no and negotiate a less risky deal. To my surprise they said yes without even trying to negotiate... players are weird sometimes ;)

The biggest risk inherent in romance is that it places a character in the spotlights and as such care has to be taken that it does not become too much part of the game just as with anything else that places once character in the spotlights.

True, but in the same breath, it can open up some excellent plot hooks.

Celebrate our differences.

Let me tell you about my Arkanian Jedi/Scout/Noble/Force Adept/Jedi Knight in Saga. I know, I know. Very effective character, though.

Anyway, when the campaign began, he had a love interest that wasn't even really an NPC. She was just a part of his backstory. A bit of fluff, if you will. Later, the group got high enough level to gain Padawans.

My master and Padawan developed a romantic (well, mostly sexual) relationship, much to the DM's head-desk.

Most of my characters have at least brief romantic relationship. But then, I also tend to actually have families that my characters interact with and care about, old friends, etc.
Skeptical_Clown wrote:
More sex and gender equality and racial equality shouldn't even be an argument--it should simply be an assumption for any RPG that wants to stay relevant in the 21st century.
104340961 wrote:
Pine trees didn't unanimously decide one day that leaves were gauche.
http://community.wizards.com/doctorbadwolf/blog/2012/01/10/how_we_can_help_make_dndnext_awesome

I played an female half elf ardent and lead guitarist of the Platinums, my friend played a narcisistic male human paladin and lead singer of the Platinums.  I offered the other player the that our Pcs were former lover. 

We crafted a background story were his paladin was a former lover of my Pc's Eladrin mother.  He was sent to study how to fight with the halberd by my Pc's father.  The human paladin charmed and the young ardent and they ran of together to the churgrin of her father. 

A year later (when the campaign actually starts) my Pc can't stand the the Paladin.  But the uber charismatic paladin/ lead singer, is just gold during a performance and in a deadly fight.  So she sticks with him.  There is a lot of clever and often vicious banter between the two.  He always harps on how she is always sticking arround and still wants him.  She always harps on being such a tool.  We have been in opposed skill challenges as it were, as he tries to seduce young towns women and the half elf tries to ward them off.  Which leads to charges of jealousy and counter charges of poor love making. 

Any way it was interesting.

All I can picutre now is the D&D episode of Community. If you have seen the episode you know what part I am talking about...
All I can picutre now is the D&D episode of Community. If you have seen the episode you know what part I am talking about...



Yes, yes I do.  D&D comedy gold!
Years and years ago...

One of our female players' characters fell in love with an NPC.  Unbeknownst to her, the NPC was a lich.  At one point in the campaign, she pledged her heart to the NPC.  The lich obliged...  by removing her heart.  She lived as long as the heart lived, and he kept it in his possession.

The party then spent the next several weeks (real life weeks, which equated to about 20 sessions) hunting the lich down, eventually destroyed him and retrieved her heart, which he had kept in a jar amidst many other hearts in jars.  She had to always keep her heart safe from harm at that point, always at risk in its fragile new home.




Simply awesome.  Love... with a dark twist! 
LEONINE ROAR : Amp Up Your D&D Game : Visit my D&D blog :: FASTER COMBAT : Crush Your Combat Grind
All I can picutre now is the D&D episode of Community. If you have seen the episode you know what part I am talking about...



Haha... yes!  Fantastic, hilarious scene!  Brilliantly and artfully done too, with the voiceover. 
LEONINE ROAR : Amp Up Your D&D Game : Visit my D&D blog :: FASTER COMBAT : Crush Your Combat Grind
Years and years ago...

One of our female players' characters fell in love with an NPC.  Unbeknownst to her, the NPC was a lich.  At one point in the campaign, she pledged her heart to the NPC.  The lich obliged...  by removing her heart.  She lived as long as the heart lived, and he kept it in his possession.

The party then spent the next several weeks (real life weeks, which equated to about 20 sessions) hunting the lich down, eventually destroyed him and retrieved her heart, which he had kept in a jar amidst many other hearts in jars.  She had to always keep her heart safe from harm at that point, always at risk in its fragile new home.




Simply awesome.  Love... with a dark twist! 

Thanks.  I wish I could really get across how intense those sessions were.  We were playing 3-4 nights a week, 8-10 hours per session.  The players were completely immersed in the campaign and attached to their characters.  They tried to protect that heart with so many different methods, both mundane and magical.  It was the focus of countless attacks and theft attempts.

Eventually, they resorted to hiding it in plain sight, on the mantle in a local tavern that featured a large collection of the extraordinary and the macabre.  I should also note that the female player role-played brilliantly the entire time, going from a vibrant, aloof girl to a very cold and emotionless woman after the betrayal.  

The heart went untouched until nearly the end of the campaign, when the character and heart were reuinited with a very in depth ritual that cost her her life shortly thereafter.  In reality, she had to retire from the campaign, so I gave her the ability to role-play her aloof character for a couple more sessions.


Celebrate our differences.