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Running a Theatrical Campaign - Part Two

   Posted by: Wolfgod   in RPG

SO HERE I am, in the humdrum world my character starts out in.  Now what?

A giant hook descends from the sky, siezes the Hero, and drops him someplace far more exciting.

Well … not literally.  Though that might work.

After the characters have been established in their normal, everyday world, it’s time to yank them out of it.  Ideally, you’ll have come up with a good enough catalyst to get your heroes moving, or at least introducing the idea of an adventure to them.

There’s several methods I’ve seen over the years to accomplish this.  Remember, your characters want a reason to get moving - they don’t want to be railroaded into following the storyline.

Part of Something Bigger:  The heroes could be part of a military outfit, religious order,  a corporation, or a street gang.  Regardless of what it is, all the heroes are included, and they all answer to someone who can just tell them what to do.

Family Ties:  The heroes are part of a family that obligates them to act.  This can be as simple as the patriarch requiring them to do a deed, or a kidnapped relative, or the tribal headman ordering his braves to go steal horses.

Reward:  The most common idea is appealing to greed - the players will be well paid for their labors.  This works quite well for some heroes, but others aren’t motivated by money, or are so wealthy they don’t see risking their lives for your cause (this happens a lot with veteran heroes).

Something Else:  Depending on the environment and the heroes that your players have built, they may have been kind enough to include their own hooks.  Revenge and vendetta are always fun.  Occasionally you’ll have romance or some other kind of quest.  These are always useful, because they motivate your heroes strongly to push the quest - which they might not do for mere money.

Now, there is a good chance your intrepid heroes will initially say no - that’s part of western heroic structure.  I’ll cover that in Part Three.

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This entry was posted on Friday, September 19th, 2008 at 1:33 pm and is filed under RPG. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

4 comments so far


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