So I talked about Reactions Rolls before, but David McGrogan has written something I want to steal.
As discussed, Into the Odd handles reaction rolls with the line:
Garnering a good first reaction requires a WIL Save for the group leader.
Fast and loose as you'd expect from the game, but it would benefit from a little more guidance.
I previously wrote about using WIL Saves to see if the NPC or Monster acts intelligently, but that still leaves a lot down to the Referee. Here's one way you could codify it a bit more.
I already give NPCs and Monsters a set of three go-to actions, so why can't this be tied in with the reaction roll?
Each NPC now gets three actions, preceded by a symbol. They always have at least one = action,
= Something they will do regardless of reaction.
+ Something they do on a positive reaction.
- Something they do on a negative reaction.
This needn't clash with the standard "roll to see what they're doing" encounter table I use, but I'd probably either use one method or the other depending on best fit.
Example Encounters in the Noname-deepdark-lostwoods.
Deep Countries towns are already unbearable for those used to city life. What passes for roads are worse. If you stray from that, well, you should have expected the worst.
Barkeater - Feral King.
STR 17, DEX 15, WIL 14, 6p, Weather Battered Hide (1), Feral Jaws (d8), Crown of Twigs.
= Repeatedly proclaim that you are in Barkeater's Domain and he is King of Wood.
+ Offer to fight you naked in return for his blessing and safe passage (win or lose, but if he beats you he must pass a WIL Save to avoid going too far and killing you).
- Declare you as trespassers and run off into the woods to set up traps and ambushes.
Grussmuck - Spirit of Mud.
STR 8, DEX 15, WIL 4, 14hp. Wooden Spike (d6).
= On death, or when bored and done with this life, explode in a cloud of mud that can only be washed out by the deepest water.
+ Offer a trade of Mudapples (incredibly tasty potatoes drawn from the mud-realm) for the promise they'll help him cover something clean and beautiful in mud.
- Pick the most beautiful, cleanest person or thing in the group, and do anything to cover it in mud.
Milkynewt - Subservient Little Lizard.
STR 3, DEX 15, WIL 2, Tongue (d6 damage to bugs only).
= Immediately bow to you in an offer to serve, welcoming any violence you dish out onto it.
+ Serve you honestly and loyally, no matter how dangerous or demeaning the work.
- Betray you at the first opportunity for a new master.