Mark S. Cookman
20 Weaknesses for Villains and Henchmen
We all have our strengths and our weaknesses. When building a villain or major henchman, it is important to remember that they will have some weakness, too. Adding personality to your villains and henchmen makes the game more fun and the story more memorable. Below are twenty suggestions for bad guy weaknesses that can help you to develop some of your own. I have kept them generic using only male and female pronouns, but switch them up and change them to whatever you enjoy the most. Happy gaming!
He is in love with the pious and chaste daughter of a Paladin in the Order of Justice
She has a special love for pigs. She keeps a small piglet as a pet and has many pig-themed knick-knacks and decorations.
He made a pledge to a dying enemy whom he respected to care for that man's family. He keeps the pledge faithfully, but never allows the family to know their benefactor.
She secretly believes in a bizarre prophecy about the return of a long-dead crocodile god and devotes about 20% of her time and resources in preparations.
He has a paralyzing fear of storms, lightning, and thunder.
She is completely consumed by her love of slight of hand and legerdemain tricks.
He believes that all magic is illusion and does not accept or recognize magic as a threat.
She cannot swim, is unreasonably frightened of water, and is completely unnerved by underwater creatures.
He is vastly overconfident in his abilities and prone to both bragging and taunting.
She must drink a small, lilac-colored potion every day at 1:00 pm. She confides in no one about the purpose.
He secretly fears losing control of his henchmen and goes out of his way to be nice to them and win their favor. Some like this treatment and others feel that he is weak in this way.
She is the mother of a child that is being raised by the elves of Harper's Keep. Elves bearing the crest of the keep are allowed to come and go as they please.
He is actually blind, but through the use of a magic item has some limited sight. He conceals this fact so that no one will discover his secret.
She is in reality more concerned about the quality and type of furnishings in her lair than she is with any grand plans of power and domination.
He loves playing music on his hurdy-gurdy and often sequesters himself away to play it when he is planning and scheming. He believes it magically helps him think better.
She prefers the company of undead and devils to humans and their ilk. She has only a few living followers and she rarely speaks to them, preferring to send commands through agents.
He is appalled by the style of the armor and cloak that he must wear to show his authority over his followers. He would prefer to redesign all of their outfits to something more upbeat and modern, but knows that his passions would be frowned upon by his mates.
She is extremely allergic to apples and apple juice. Within an hour of consumption, her body will be so wracked with cramps that she would be immobilized.
He is addicted to pipe weed and can't make any major decision without sitting down and smoking a large pipe full. His plans are often ill-conceived and seemingly pointless.
She has been cursed by a powerful gypsy witch for her actions against the people. Every full moon she transforms into a random animal for 3 days; it might be a goldfish or it could be a woolly mammoth. She always knows when, but never knows what.