View Full Version : Plot Hook Help

2010-06-15, 05:01 PM
Hello all,
I am going to be taking over DMship in my group for a little while and I was looking to take my group in a new direction. I wanted to do light combat (which is very much different for us) as our game has pretty much descended into hack and slash and then the DM yells at us when we don't act within the rigid alignment that he conforms to. He wants to play black and white morality - good vs evil, no shades of gray/grey. A number of us have told him, "hey, some grey would be fun." But according to him D&D was meant to be played this way. But this is hardly the point.
What I wanted to run was a fairly long number of sessions that is unlike our current play style. We never split up, our paladin is our mouthpiece and the rest of us are relegated to sidekick at best and secondary characters at worst. So my thought was for the PCs to find out about an attack on a major city somehow and that there is a person with key information about the attack but he is under lock and key awaiting trial for another crime. I want to put the characters up against their own choices and have there be no right answer. Do the characters break him out to stop the greater threat? Represent him court? One scenario I had in mind was for the PCs to be running across town to some time sensitive material, and for a fire or a major robbery, or some immediate threat assaulting the citizenry come up so that the PCs have to decide what's more important. The threat in front of them, or the imminent attack? So on and so forth.
I have a number of ideas, mostly revolving around a court case and some filler ideas.
I was curious for other people's ideas. Have you run into something like this before? How did it work out for you, the other players, and the game as a whole.
Thanks for any consideration.

2010-06-15, 05:54 PM
My situation sounds a lot like yours - normal DM good - but due to family only really runs prewritten d crawls. I have to step in sometimes and take it more in the direction you're trying.

I wouldn't overload them with 'situations' Like adding in a fire etc. I think the 1st idea has enough flesh on it.

Sit: For some reason they have to get a guy out of jail.

Ways this can go.
Court -Pure diplomacy - skill challenge - perhaps over several days -
Side quest - hunt down information from the darker sides of town - do they go in all guns blazing or make a deal to get the info they need?

Break Out -
at this point I would ask them if they are being sneaky = skill challenge
Or pure bash = combat encounter (can still do nonlethal damage)
Then 'escape' Skill Challenge - lots of scope hear for different methods - bribing guards - tunnells, dip to get the tavern guy to hide you etc.

If they fail either then see the court SK you wrote up and run that - but they are the accused! and at hard DCs.

A time sensitive event could be trying to get a witness thats just dissapeared to court - who's taken her? where is she? bust in - rescue the last - rush her to court ec.


Shamus of DM of the Ring fame - see his DnD camp on the same site presented a situation you would like.

1) Group hire to protect food convey to disaster area - but on way get v.easy combat against staving villagers/refugee's. Do they give the food? Or protect it and deliver to people that really do need it?

2) Monsters attack a slave mine - slaves are refusing to work and being killed for it - Do they held the evil empire and clear out the mines? Carry on and finish the empire for good? Convince the EE its useless to carry on killing the slavers?