Babi Ngepet
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Basic Information

The Babi Ngepet is a creature from Indonesian mythology which, in European terms, would be described as a werepig.

Traditionally the creature in question is a man or woman whose excessive greed led them to make a bargain with an evil god or spirit (or, indeed The Devil) to receive riches. As part of the price of that deal they are sometimes forced to adopt the form (and frequently the mentality) of a wild pig. Alternatively they may have this form of lycanthropy thrust upon them as a curse for their greed or they may be a wild pig transformed into human shape by an evil power to spread discord amongst the local community by its greedy and exploitative behaviour.

It should be noted that Indonesia is extensively islamised and a pig would be considered to be najis (inherently unclean) as well as its usual associations with greed, gluttony and squalor. This would be doubly appropriate as a Babi Ngepet in human form was traditionally expected to engage in sharp and/or exploitative business practices including lending money at interest1.


1. full source reference

Game and Story Use

  • The South East Asian wild pig is not an especially formidable foe and these particular lycanthropes should probably not be a combat challenge. Expect them rather to use their money and social leverage (perhaps including coerced debtors) against the PCs.
  • A Babi Ngepet might well be the sort of "person" to operate a Tuyul.
  • Might be a good choice of director for an evil corporation.
  • PCs might become indebted to one of these - either by borrowing money or by accepting favours from it.
  • Conversely it might hire them for various jobs, not all of which need be immoral.
  • Unknowing relatives may hire PCs to find a Babi who has shifted and fled into the jungle … alternatively a Babi may be stuck in his house and provide a nasty surprise for people coming to visit (or even family members) - perhaps he kills his wife or child before the transformation times out, leaving a victim who has obviously been mauled by a pig. How did a pig get into the living room of a penthouse apartment?
  • An especially greedy PC might be cursed with the inflicted version of this, as might a merely gluttonous one, especially if their greed or gluttony offend local powers2. Maybe it triggers every time they commit a particularly significant act that indulges one of these sins.
  • Someone might be unjustly accused of being a Babi Ngepet, perhaps as a scapegoat for a community's problems or as part of a witch hunt. Maybe even by a real Babi trying to divert attention.
  • The BECMI "Expert Set" for that RPG included the Devil Swine - a monster that was, viewed in context, a Europeanised Babi Ngepet.
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