After yesterday’s blog detailing how to start building the background of your unique B.P.R.D. Agent in Hellboy: The Roleplaying Game, today Alex Delaney is back to talk roles. That’s right, the origins of your Agent are just the start of the customisation process.
Roles in the Hellboy RPG are how agents gain access to the majoirty of their abilities. There are six roles split across the three main departments of the B.P.R.D these are:
The all-round agent who balances investigation through team work and surviving whatever they are facing long enough to hopefully figure out how to stop it.
Whether that is as the Team Field Medic, who can not only patch up their fellow agents, but find the weak points in the creature they face. The Investigator who catches the clues that others might miss. The Team leader who stands shoulder to shoulder with their team to urge them on and ensure that no opportunity is squandered. Finally, we have the Enhanced Field Training route made famous by Big Red himself, specialising in learning from the cases they face. Enhanced Field Training increases the effectiveness of the field agent’s abilities and offers additional customisation.
Not all members of the team are necessarily formal agents within the B.P.R.D. Some are called in due to their specialised knowledge, are part of a mission of good will from other paranormal organisations or have skills that cannot be taught on a weekend seminar. Whether they be members of a religious organisation, law enforcement, journalists, or other paranormal organisations such as the Russian Special Science Service. The B.P.R.D consultants’ focused approach make them formidable agents, even when the case is not strictly within their area of knowledge.
Research and Development
Whereas a field agent hopes that one of them will catch the vital clue or be able to call in help, the field analyst sets about solving a case from the ground up. The have unmatched skillsets in discovering the weakness of the creatures and are able to capitalise on the opportunities granted by ingenuity more than any other role. A specialisation available here grants the Agent access to rituals – the closest thing to spells that Agents can gain.
Able to construct countermeasures against some of the abilities they witness, the experimental engineer is able to push paranormal technology to its limit and occasionally prevent it from blowing up in their face. What is the worst that can happen?
Able to push their fellow agents to new levels, navigate the internal processes of the B.P.R.D. to grant the team higher priority for both equipment and back up the team. Members of personnel development excel in gaining information from people and aiding the mental recovery of their team.
The role that splits the most dramatically, based upon its specialisation! This offers Agents the opportunity to become a fire team director who uses operational tactics to direct the rest of their team in the heat of the moment, to spring a trap or lay down suppressive fire. Alternatively become an Emergency Technician who can repair and build equipment in the field to find a work around.
Agents start at 5th level, as you are a team that is being sent out on their own. This also provides opportunities for Agents to have either specialised or have spent time in other departments and other roles. For example an Agent may have been a B.P.R.D. consultant before joining formally as a field agent or the field analyst may have decided to broaden their research and spend time as an experimental engineer. On the other side a field agent may have been in that role since they first joined the B.P.R.D. and that experience will show.
Which role would you like to hear more about in a deep dive? Let us know on Twitter and Facebook.