View Full Version : Help with Background/Motivation Cards

2014-10-15, 05:57 PM
I'm working on a variant method of Character Creation, inspired by Backstory Cards (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2068026266/backstory-cards). I want to take a different approach, something more open-ended and less rigid. I'm concerned about a specific element at the moment.

The concept would be that you would draw 3 "Motivation Cards" from the deck, and choose 2 of them to create your backstory (alternately, you search the deck for 1 specific card, then reshuffle and draw 1). The premise on the card would be fairly broad, allowing you to be creative when interpreting it and making it easier to combine the two into a cohesive backstory.

For some examples, let's say I am making a character, and I draw 3 cards: Escaping Home, Free your People, and Whispers in the Dark.

Escaping Home/Free your People: My character's village has been enslaved by a nearby warlord. A small group of us (including my sister) managed to escape, thanks to my father's sacrifice. After mourning his death, both my sister and I vowed to return one day. We went our separate ways, but will reunite when one of us has the means to free our people.

Escaping Home/Whispers in the Dark: Since my character could speak, he would occasionally speak cryptic phrases with another voice. Over time, people were able to interpret these phrases as prophecy, and it was believed my character was the conduit of evil. Persecuted, I ran on a particularly brutal day to fend for myself, searching for the source and meaning of this "Dark Voice".

Free your People/Whispers in the Dark: My character's town is under the rule of a false king, and there is a movement to overthrow him and install the rightful heir. I recently became involved with this movement, and during various operations I've been given strange visions that were critical to their success. We believe they are gifts from the gods, proof that our cause is a righteous one.

I'm trying to come up with a somewhat cohesive list of "titles" for these cards, to allow for a wide range of starting points. I tend to run with larger groups (8 Players aren't unknown), so I'd like 24 different cards at the least for diversity's sake (though I may have multiple copies of cards in the deck, especially if I want to slant the game in a certain direction).

I was going to toss this idea out here, see if other people could come up with ideas I could use. The advantage is that I'm only really looking for broad phrases, the starting point for backstories. Also, since I'm stuck in my own head, if two of these are too close to each other, please point it out so I can prune the list (the goal here is a certain amount of diversity).

The list so far:

1. Avenge Me
2. Complete your Mission
3. Earn your Birthright
4. Escaping Home
5. Free your People
6. Overcome your Evil Nature
7. Prophetic Destiny
8. Redemption
9. Remove the Curse
10. Rescue Me
11. Retrieve the Heirloom
12. Seek the Truth
13. Spread the Word
14. Support the Family
15. Touched by Death
16. Whispers in the Dark