Check out this post from Charles Yallowitz on The Importance of City Guards in Fantasy
Legend of Zelda (I think?)
Whenever a city turns up in a fantasy story, these people will be there. Either as background, battle fodder, or momentary obstacles, the guards are around in some fashion. We tend to overlook them unless we need some unexpected corpses or government corruption is part of the plot. Not much personality among these characters either, so what purpose do they serve?
Well, it really depends on the story. Many adventures begin with the hero getting involved with the guards to some extent. Some are arrested and others are members before the story takes them away from the city. This makes the concept of the guards a rather common jumping point. It isn’t that surprising too. For heroes that come from those ranks, it explains their training and certain aspects of their personality. They can either be out for justice or think the entire system is…
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