Puppeteer (5e Background)

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A puppeteer is more than just a street performer, it's a heritage. You've grown up perfecting a skill that has been passed down for many generations in your family. You use your talent to entice small crowds so you can prey on the weaker minded members of society. With a puppet and some string, you draw people in close for what seems like simple entertainment. However, you're real performance is in drawing out the weaknesses of your audience; you are adept at forcing the pockets of the wealthy into your own. Your keen eyes easily detect the nuances in your audience's behaviors, which is a skill that has developed beyond the sidewalks. While your overly powerful senses keep you sharp, you also enjoy the joy you bring to children: those not yet old enough to understand the manipulative world that surrounds them. Your puppet changes with your location and mood, as you specialize in adapting to the various environments and demographics your profession takes you.


While practicing alone in your home, you've created the perfect combination of your own identity and the personality trying to get out.

d6 Specialization
1 Sock Puppets
2 Finger Puppets
3 Marionettes
4 Rod Puppets
5 Shadow Puppets
6 Ventriloquist's Dummy

Skill Proficiencies: Perception and Performance

Tool Proficiencies: Taxidermist's kit, Sewing Kit,

Languages: Two languages of your choice

Equipment: A Taxidermist's kit, a sewing kit, a marionette, a set of traveler's clothes, and a pouch containing 25gp

Feature: Play the Crowd[edit]

Being a proficient performer has shown you the secrets to manipulating small crowds. While deep in combat or nonchalantly travelling through town, you are able to quickly engage your audience in a privatized display to single certain members out for your own pleasure. While building up to the apex of the act, you ably gather the information you need to bend these individuals to your will.

Feature: Puppet Master[edit]

Your proficiency with puppets has given you the unique ability to not only change voices but styles as well. Roll another d6 for a second puppet specialization.

Suggested Characteristics[edit]

The puppeteer performs best while working alone. Adventuring with a group of amateurs could cost him a show or amplify the crowd's generosity. Having grown up with this niche ability, he is always looking to make some coin.

d8 Personality Trait
1 What is that monstrosity behind you, sir?
2 I've seen a thousand faces, ma'am, but I've never seen one quite like yours.
3 My particular talents have made me rich and famous...mostly rich.
4 Perhaps I can teach my audience the life lessons I've learned along the way.
5 I have many stories to tell, stories that I've written myself.
6 Why do my finger's act this way? I made that mistake on purpose.
7 Are your shoes untied? Ha!
8 Come a little closer...a little closer...
d6 Ideal
1 People Person. My audience always comes before my own needs; a good performance is what I seek to give. (Neutral Good)
2 Golden Goose. Is that the cling-clang sound of money in your pocket. Consider it mine. (Lawful Evil)
3 For the People. The smiles on their faces is what makes this vocation worth the work! I'll sleep well tonight! (chaotic neutral)
4 Outward Expression. My performance is really a personal display of how I'm being manipulated in my own life. If only someone could see through this act and free me from this mental cage (Neutral)
5 Jaded. People are all the same, ignorant. They need to be taught a lesson and fork over some coin before they can leave. (Neutral Evil)
6 Street Performer. I never push people to give, but I do hope my audience spreads the word about my gift. I do my act because it's my heritage, and I'm always ready to give a little more if the audience plays along. (Lawful Good)
d6 Bond
1 My act is the result of many generations of experience and study. I will make my family's name known throughout the world.
2 I'm a teacher at heart. Though I perform for a crowd, I always dispense wisdom to the young and the old.
3 Growing up with very little, I'm dedicated to acquiring a fortune in my travels. I have deep pockets.
4 Steady income and well mannered crowds are what I'm looking for.
5 I'm a philanthropist. I'm interested in getting as many laughs and smiles as possible. After the show, I'll find someone who needs the profits more than I do.
6 You look like the kind of person who makes important decisions in this town. Tell me more about your plans and maybe some of your darker secrets.
d6 Flaw
1 My generosity is my weakness. My puppets are worn out and my clothes haven't been taken care of either. I'm always struggling to make ends meet and I think I'm in the beginning stages of arthritis.
2 People never stop asking for personal performances even after the show has ended. I have a hard time finding peace and quiet when I'm in town. As a result I'm mean when not in character.
3 I make mistakes during my performances often. I have a hard time reading people which results in uncomfortable jokes and horrible timing. I'm socially awkward.
4 People know I'm manipulative and word is getting out. I'm rather infamous now and it haunts me wherever I go. Coercion is a gift...so are old people's fortunes.
5 I'm a sucker for a smile. My desire to please my audience has turned the tables on my career. It's the audience who plays me now. I'm a puppet.
6 I've forgotten the traditions of my fathers before me. My acts are filled with modern-style approaches to puppetry. Those who knew watched my family's previous acts now look on in shame.

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