April 19, 2011

Adventure Building (Part III): Cast

On the previous post I wrote a few things about elements of an adventure such as Plot and Location. Today we will talk a bit about the Cast of an adventure, another main element of any interesting story.

The player's characters are obviously the main characters of the adventure, but any story needs its supporting cast and, of course, a antagonist. About the antagonist, every cool adventure needs a villain, a character the players hate and want to defeat it, that makes the adventure goes forward.

April 09, 2011

Adventure Building (Part II): Location

On our last post we talked about the elements of a good adventure. Three of those I consider the main elements, which are the plot, the location and the cast. We already talked about the plot and suggested a few themes and some questions for you to think about on each one. Today we will talk about the location element.

The location element is where the adventure takes place, where the main acts of the story happen, where the final epic battle get fought. Those places have a significant influence on the adventure, and can make the story much more interesting and alive. It's one thing to battle kobolds on a bare dungeon room, but it's entirely different to battle them in an ancient temple dedicated to Tiamat built beneath an dragonborn's city ruin. The possibilities and images that come to your mind on the second scene are almost endless compared to the first one.

When you think about the place where the events will unfold you have to ask yourself what is different about that place that makes it special? Is there something that makes that particular location different from the others? Is there something magical, fantastic, terrible there? Those kind of questions help you think about where the adventure takes place. Sometimes the location can even be the adventure it self, like when the party needs to escape a dangerous maze-like dungeon. So when you plan your adventure, try to give the location a personality, interesting characteristics and an unique story. This will help you bring the story to life.