Game Story:
The Plot
by SeiferTim : 11 March 2004

The PCs' Role
We're going to talk about the role that the PCs have in their quest. While this is sometimes something you want to come up with before you make up the Quest, you can usually base it off of what the Quest is, which is why I wanted to bring it up after the Quest. Generally, what is the PCs overall role in this adventure? Are they trying to save the world? Save a country? Find a particular item? Are they good guys? What? This is going to be the overall general thing that's going on in the game.

Example (continued off of the last example):

Our heroes are going to eventually go on a quest to find a secret, magical item to save the world with, and keep it from the villains.

If you look at it in sort of a hierarchy of how the story breaks down, the PCs' Role is at the top, which is made up of slightly smaller Quests , which are each made up of even smaller Paths .

You can go ahead and roll for your Role, if you want, but I would recommend looking for a bigger connection to the whole thing yourself. If you want, you can save the Rold for last, and put everything together then.

The Villians' Role
Just like the aforementioned PCs' Role , the Villians' Role is what the overall goal of the Villians in your story. Make it simple. Why do they want to stop the PCs? Or what goal do they have that the PCs are interfering with?

Lets bring out our Villain again from the earlier NPC section.

The Villians are looking for the same magical item, to bring total chaos and darkness to the world. They are racing against the PCs to locate the item first.

Short and sweet is all you really need.

The Path
Really, I should call this "Paths", and this is where things start getting complicated. You'll want to create several mini-obstacles for the PC to navigate through. You may want to simply make a list of simple things for them to do:

  • Investigate Duke's Mercenaries
  • Infiltrate Duke's Castle
  • Find plans for world domination
  • Run into Dukes warriors
  • Escape from Castle

...and then expand on these:

  • Investigate Duke's Mercenaries
    • Find 3 Mercenaries outside your house.
    • Defeat Mercenaries
    • Find note with Duke's Seal on it
  • Infiltrate Duke's Castle
    • Locate Supply Route to Castle
    • Bribe Guards for entrance
    • Sneak inside Castle
  • Find plans for world domination
  • Run into Dukes warriors
  • Escape from Castle
And so on and so forth...

Anyway, just add whatever seems natural to the story. And take baby steps from point a to point b. It should be pretty simple, so don't try to over think things. (For those, like me, who think better in a narrative way, go ahead an just explain the whole story between paths, and it should work out fine.)

The Reward
So what are the PCs going to get out of their Quest(s)? If they win, do they save the world? Become rich & Famous? What motivation do they have to go through with it? Come up with a logical jump from their quest, for instance, if they're on a quest to locate a magical item, then don't have the reward have something to do with the cute girl down the street....

A logical jump would be to say that once they find the item, they can use it to rid evil from the world, and live out their days in blissful peace. Sure, why not?

The Consequences
What will happen if your PCs fail? While this won't necessarily be used for an "alternate ending" type thing (though it could ), you still want to come up with some kind of threat to hold over the PCs heads, to help keep them moving. In this case, we want to say that if they don't find the magic relic before the villains, then the world will be plunged into darkness. You will most definitely refer to this consequence often throughout the game, in a manner that the player will want to try and make sure that they do what they need to do.

Using FFVII as an example, the 3rd disc, with Meteor hanging over the horizon was an ominous reminder of the consequences of failing, as well as a push to kind of get the player to keep moving. Who knew when that thing was going to land... scary...

By now, you should have everything put together, in many, many different files, and sheets of scrap paper. The last thing you need to do is Type it all up in a coherent, easy to follow document, called the Design Document .

So the next section, is going to be all about that Document. Tune in!



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