How to judge appropriate opposition

I'm about to start running Night's Black Agents for some friends, and one thing that I don't see in the NBA core rules or in Double Tap is mention of how to judge the opposition that you send against a team of agents. I'm not looking for perfectly balanced encounters, but it would be nice to be able to eyeball it and know if I'm sending them to certain death or a cakewalk.

I see in the Excess Baggage demo adventure, for example, that the NPCs are statted out as for "2 or 3 PCs" or "4+ PCs" so I would love to see some rough guidelines on how Kevin Kulp worked that out when he was designing the demo.

Since I'm probably not going to be using any published adventures for this game (I'm running it in the Shadowforce Archer setting, including all the weird stuff that entails), it would be really useful for me to have an idea how I might plan out the numbers and major stats for the opposition.

Does anyone have any ideas or links to information like this?


  • This is a great idea for a Page XX article - I don't know of any writing on it. A couple of things to note.

    Fresh PCs have a ton of resources, so you can hit them fairly hard to start without worrying you'll hurt, them then fine tune later encounters. Another thing that makes a big difference is how well the players know the combat options - that can cut down opposition quickly.

    My usual advice (and what I do) is start with a relatively easy encounter to gauge the strength of the party, then ramp it up.
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