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Offline PoisonAlchemist

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Help with a funeral party
« on: April 25, 2012, 05:55:20 PM »
Saturday is approaching and I need some help with the next session in my pathfinder game.

The bare-minimum background: A hive-of-scum-and-villainy city where the party is in the employ of a fallen-from-high mob boss. The only station the man has comes from his position as a sin eater, which the other mob bosses find very useful considering all the terrible things they've done and don't want to pay for in the afterlife. The wealthiest, most powerful, and most terrible man in the city has just been poisoned and killed by his eighth wife (think blue-beard) leaving his empire up-in-the-air between his two younger brothers and his now-missing wife. The party employer has been invited to attend, and it is a 'show of good faith'  (really more a custom of paranoia) to bring a small group loyal to you to join the funeral guard.

My group does reasonably well with RP so long as they have some sort of concrete goal in mind. The catch is, at the moment I have no goal. They have no assignment other than 'be at the party', and I have no concrete events or secrets for them to uncover.

For events I have been tossing around:
  • Each of the brothers could approach a different party member in private to enlist their services to find the missing wife. Could be fun inter-party conflict times.
  • The ring of the thieves guild leader shows up, maybe followed by some thieves. The twin thieves-and-assassins guilds have been having trust issues and the thief king does not want an assassin to claim his position and take over his guild.
  • The BBEG of the city (every major city has a monster, a sort of guardian of evil) and her minions could crash the party. Guard duty turns into a heated battle for escape.

Got any ideas? How do you RP social sabotage, verbal maneuvering, and coercion? What do you do when that winds down?
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Offline Dossta

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Re: Help with a funeral party
« Reply #1 on: April 26, 2012, 09:59:36 AM »
Whenever I get to a point like this in my game -- the "what is the goal of this scene?" moment -- it's a huge red flag when something doesn't immediately come to mind.  Same for combat.  If this scene is just there to be "filler", then perhaps you could either skip through it or ask them do a quick series of social rolls to see whether or not they offend anyone while on guard duty.  That way they don't have to sit through a scene that doesn't further the plot, but their characters can still "participate" and gain points with your NPC.


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Offline Strolen

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Re: Help with a funeral party
« Reply #2 on: April 26, 2012, 10:40:03 AM »
With all the high power it is a good opportunity to lay in plan the next phase of your campaign I think too. Any way for the sin eater to increase his standing in this situation? Somebody to assassinate? Spell a rival to try and assassinate one of the brothers and make sure they are killed in the action?  Maybe the sin eater gets killed leaving the PCs on their own in a dangerous position without a benefactor so they need to figure out a way to be valuable...I guess which you must also provide. Perhaps the sin eater knows where the wife is and will use the information during the night to maneuver, which backfires when the person he tries to bribe with it releases the kingdom BBEG as a huge diversion to what he needs to do to escape and/or get the sin eater killed.

Just throwing out randomness.

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Offline PoisonAlchemist

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Re: Help with a funeral party
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2012, 03:53:12 PM »
Thanks guys. It's early in the morning on the day in question, and I have a different scenario that advances a different plot that I could work with that I think I will use this week before the party. If I can't figure out something by then Dossta may be right.

Really attending the funeral is how the Boss gains more standing, learning a bunch of secrets which, in this city, can be used like physical currency. The relatives of the deceased tend to be compliant with this because of their relatives wishes, their own desire to have their sins absolved, and they can either coerce or 'buy back' some information they needed from the deceased from the Eater. Now that I think about it, the players don't know any of that.

Since he is taking in some of the memories of the murdered husband I did plan on him figuring some things out, both about the missing wife and the BBEG but I don't think the party is the appropriate place to reveal such things.
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