Sunday, October 7, 2007

Plots -- Early Concepts

Created: February 1, 2007

Possible plots:
Party vs. Ao-Manasa guard
They develop a feud with the Ao-Manasa guard. Sort of a “I’ll get you next time!” kind of dynamic.

Development is easy, because I can stick it in between other things. Anytime their adventures take them towards the shady side of the law, we can advance this plot.

Sigreid gets to oppose giants, who also happen to be just themselves (conflict!)
Blank gets to play “outsmart the Alliance”
Rellik gets to be sneaky and badass, undercover type
Sorern has a vague interest in opposing the giants, on account of dragons

Someone wants to kill the “King.”

This is why Sa-Follen was killed. The “King” is coming to visit Ao-Manasa soon, and they wanted to force a new captain of the guard, so the city is off balance, and the guard is busy doing housecleaning. (Note: by “King” I currently mean the Lady Protector, but it could be anyone important. I’ll need to decide soon, because I need to start dropping hints.)

Development will mostly be player driven. If they don’t do anything, it’s going to happen, so I can timeline it. (Also, need to make sure the players find out that the “King” is coming to visit. Maybe have Ea-Shamar mention it.) Their finding out about it will depend on whether they investigate Sa-Follen’s death, and why they were all there on the same night.

Don’t know who’s responsible. I do know that they were working through Mixastomere, whether she knows it or not, and through Rellik’s organization. (Nightwalkers? Branch of the Nightwalkers?) And possibly through the Knights of the Axe. Too tidy? Maybe. But it’s a start.

Possibility: The goal is to start a war. Preferably between the giants and the dragons. Could be Havinar Balacos. (AE p. 361)

Gannen is a red herring. If they start to investigate, other people will start dying, making it look like the work of a death cult of some kind—and they may discover that he’s a champion of death, making it look like him. Close enough to the truth to lead them astray entirely.

Heck, this is neat enough to just do. Random people will start dying, nomatter what they do. Give the mystery assassin a calling card. Sounds good.

Blank gets to talk to people, unravel the mystery
Sigreid gets to talk to people, and bring justice
Rellik gets to do some underworld stuff—if they investigate, that’s where this will go
Sorern . . . er . . . well, it’ll involve the dragons somehow

The Lost Empire
This whole area was once ruled by a long vanished empire.

This is a “plot,” and not just a neat fact, for three reasons. One, it allows me to tie together a series of site-based adventures: they’re discovering more about this empire. Two, I’m thinking it may turn out that one of the PCs is “the last heir” to this empire, and that someone’s looking for said heir. (I can drop when needed, to jump start the plot.) Three, if this is true, then it ties in with what I figure is Sigreid’s long term goal: to return the lands to local rule.

I want to make Rellik the “last heir” because it lets me drive home the “no longer human” thing, and because it’s an amusing way to set off a search for some kind of “lost prince.” I had this idea that it would be interesting to have the party have to rescue someone trapped somewhere underwater. Anyway, the idea is, there’s this legend that involves some prince of this empire disappearing, or being kidnapped by fish people. Or something. And they find out about this as they’re investigating ruins, and then this group that’s looking to bring back the empire (they have a spell, maybe) finally finds Rellik. Only he’s a mojh, so all hope is lost. Except that maybe the legend isn’t a legend, and they set off on a daring quest to find this person and save the world.

Or something. That’s my idea, anyway. The brilliant thing about this plot is that it ties together the water-based exploration adventure that Sorern and Blank are interested in with the self-rule bit that Sigreid has, and making Rellik the last heir ties him into the plot. I’m also thinking that this may be connected to the Assassination thing, somehow.

Development includes having several ruins for them to explore. I can feed this through Blank’s NPC, maybe make him a collector. Or the contact has a client who’s a collector, but can’t be bothered to talk to . . . treasure hunters. (Disdain. Heavy on the disdain. Let the PCs brag about proving him wrong, bringing home the goods.) This section will need to get a couple of key facts across, preferably by taking advantage of Rellik’s Decipher Script skill.

There was an Empire that ruled this area ages ago.
It disappeared in such-and-such a way.
There might be a way to get it back, if you could find a genuine heir.
(Magical ceremony, maybe. That’d fit the Diamond Throne vibe.)
Rumor has it that there’s an heir, today.
The legend of the lost prince.

Also throw some false information in, or some stuff that’s technically true but not related to the plot, directly. Just for color.

Sorern gets water-based exploration adventure.
Blank gets water-based exploration adventure.
Sigreid gets to help return the area to its native rulers.
Rellik gets to be the last heir of an ancient empire. This is cool.

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