NPC stands for Non-Playable Character. The characters wandering around different locations but not being played as are NPCs.
Types of NPCs
Shopkeepers are NPCs that maintain various stores around the Dawn of the New Hour universes. They sell items, skills, and magic to the player, and will buy items back from them for a lower price than they were bought for.
There are two types of Shopkeepers:
Item Shopkeepers are Shopkeepers in charge of Item Shops. They normally sell healing items to the player. Occasionally they will also sell cooking items and food.
Magic Shopkeepers are Shopkeepers in charge of Magic Shops. They normally sell a variety of spells and skills to the player, given that they have not yet already learned the spell they're trying to buy. Buying spells or skills from the Magic Shopkeepers will automatically teach that spell or skill to whichever Party Member they player chooses.
Innkeepers are NPCs that maintain Inns. They handle the incoming money and is also in charge of denying the player a room for rest if they do not have the required payment. These NPCs are generally kind to the player.
Barkeepers are NPCs that maintain a town's local Pub. They handle incoming money, as well as information that they hear from passing NPCs. They also sell up to four treats for the player to consume, usually liquids or food.They are tougher NPCs who can hold their own in a fight, and is quick to scolding the local drunk customer for harassing the player.
Quest NPCs are non-playable characters who request help from the player.
Quest NPCs can ask for:
- Obtaining an item
- Help with money
- Completing a task
- Completing a "dungeon"-type area
- Visiting a certain location
- Meeting/talking with another NPC
- Information seeking
Completing the Quest that the NPC gives you will result in a reward. The reward varies from healing items to weapons and armor, to even gold or other expensive items. Depending on how many quests are completed, the player can also unlock trophies related to quests.
Administrative NPCs are in charge of various locations as a whole. They can also be in charge of specific features, such as logging in to GameJolt. Some Administrative NPCs are in charge of information, informing the player of how things work in the game or how certain events are conducted, such as in the Convention Center or the Otnemarcas Hotel.
Random non-playable characters, or "citizen characters", are characters roaming the towns, cities, shops, and homes by themselves. They don't hold much responsibility, and will usually chat about their own lives or something that happened recently to the world around them. Citizen characters are highly attentive, and will talk about recent events or news that they here. For example, if the player helps out a Quest NPC, a Random NPC will discuss it in a variety of ways, from congratulating the character for their choice to help, to talking about how the Quest NPC was grateful for recently-received assistance.
Random NPCs not only add to the breath of a location, making it seem more realistic in the fact that people live their lives in these places, but they also relate helpful tips on occasion. Some citizens will relate information on healing or items, and others will direct the player to certain locations of interest or even present the player with various items "unneeded" by the NPC.
NPCs will normally look plain. Shirts, pants, skirts, even dresses they'll wear. Sometimes, NPCs will have repeating sprites in certain towns. More important NPCs will have unique sprites, and will not be seen under a different name wandering around, with the exception of the Bartenders in Luxerion and New Woodbury.
As stated with Random NPCs, non-playable characters have knowledge of the world around them. They live their lives as normal people, with families and day-to-day experiences. They will discuss with their neighbors. Many NPCs hold jobs and make actual income. NPCs also have their own inventory, which is not accessible to the player.
NPCs are hyper-aware of their surroundings. Dialogue between the player and an NPC can change relatively quickly, depending on what changes around them.
Changes to dialogue can be due to:
- the player's gold
- the player's inventory
- the player's active/completed quests
- the player's active/completed chapters
- events happening in the world
- characters in the party
- characters met
- shops visited
As of DEMO Version 1.4, NPCs show a very limited amount of dialogue options. This is changed in DEMO Version 1.5, where NPCs are much more aware. The extent of awareness has not been met with a limit, and is not currently reflecting on the final product.
- Child NPCs are more likely to talk about their families, such as parents or siblings.
- Types of NPCs can be mixed. For example, a Barkeeper can also act as a Quest NPC, a Shopkeeper can also be an Administrative NPC, and so on.
- Certain NPCs count as the games easter eggs, or references to future updates as well.
- A triangle has shown up in the background of some maps in DEMO Version 1.2, which could have been allusion to Bill Cipher from Gravity Falls.
- Xigbar, Xemnas, Xaldin, and Vexen all show up in two locations. These are characters from the Kingdom Hearts series. They also refer to a doctor leading a team, which is assumed to be the White Robes of the Fold, mentioned at the post-credit scene of Dawn of the New Hour - DEMO Version.
- NPCs with the name "? ? ?" are characters the player must return to later on.