The Obligitory Excuse Post V00000000000001

Last night was setting up to be an excellent evening: I had a nice 4 hour block in which to write posts ahead for this blog. This kind of event doesn’t happen to terribly often, but it is not entirely a novelty.

So instead of turning on the music and digging in I decided to catch up on Gnome Stew where I found this very nice article “Making Challenges That Players Love To Beat”. This lead the ChattyDM’s article on “Mining Tropes For RPG Goodness: You Bastard” (I’m a sucker for any article that mentions BSG’s Gaius Baltar). Therein I found the link of “Ultimate Time Vacuuming” which led to my doom: TV Trops.org.

When I next looked at the clock it was 4 hours latter and I had spent the entire evening wiki’ng my life away.

So I decided to subscribe to a Blogging trope: The Excuse post.



Snorkey: wiki’s are Eeeevvvviiiillllllllllllll goodness.


Generic Three Layered Plot 0004 – The Helping Hand.

This plot would be well suited to any setting: The hand of power could be a head of a mega-corporation; A guild leader; A lich; the leader of a philanthropic organization; the leader of a gang. The only requirement is that they work through intermediaries and remain behind the curtain until the last Arc.

Campaign Plot: A person of power has decided to aid and guide the heroes to a goal of the persons choosing. NPCs: The Hand of Power, their assistant, and agents.

Arc Plot 1: An academic organization is trying to do good things in bad ways. NPCs: Academics and their agents; Victims; and the Assistant.

Intro Story: The heroes are contracted to deliver a device to a group of academics in a remote, yet settled location. They will be contacted by the assistants’ helper during a moment of need. The helper will question and council the heroes that they need to investigate further. NPCs: Helper, opposition.

Story Plot 1: The heroes are given a counter offer/mission by the Hand of Power through the helper. The new mission involves the investigation of a historical event that closely resembles the current situation. NPCs: Helper; historian;

Story Plot 2: The Assistants’ helper reveals that A trial run of the experiment is about to occur. The demonstration is successful and reveals that the academics goal is within reach, however there are rampant side effects that the heroes become witness to. NPCs: the Helper; victims; A lone researcher. A cameo by a member of the religious group would be a good thing.

Story Plot 3: The installation is complete and about to be used “for the good of everyone”. The assistant leaks information to the heroes that the opposite is true. NPCS: the Academic Leader; other academics; The assistant’s helper.

Interlude Plot 1: The Assistant contacts the heroes with offers of assistance as they deal with the social/political repercussions of their actions. The beloved leader (story 12) becomes involved.

Arc Plot 2: A religious group is attempting to increase their power base.

Story Plot 7: A gang war is tearing the city apart. The religious group attempts to intervene by taking a side and directing it against their opposition. The assistant attempts to convince the heroes to take the other gangs side.

Story Plot 8: The religious group targets other churches in the city. The first desecrations are carried out by a hand full of persons, the latter ones by a mob of devout and fearful. The assistant mostly assists with inferior information (which the heroes already know) and paltry resources.

Story Plot 9: The religious group attempts to gain political power through whatever means necessary. The assistant begrudgingly assists the heroes in the most minimal manner possible.

Interlude Plot 2: The assistant, out of jealousy, attempts to harm the heroes: They start by trying to destroy the heroes’ reputation and then progress to legal and physical destruction. NPCs: members of society, gossips, legal authorities, thugs and the Assistant.

Arc Plot 3: The Hand of Power attempts to use the heroes to achieve their goals.

Story Plot 10: The Hand of Power arranges a marriage for one of the heroes; the unwilling prospective spouse will attempt to flee with their true love.

Story Plot 11: The Hand of Power demands a test of loyalty from the heroes.

Story Plot 12: The Hand of Power wishes the heroes to kill a beloved leader so that they may place one of the heroes as a puppet.

Campaign Climax: Confrontation between the heroes and the Hand of Power at a moment of decision. NPCs: The Hand of Power, their followers and minions.

Generated by hand from a home brewed tarot generator that used my article “Three Layered Campaign Design”.


Hopping on the Bandwagon: WoAdWriMo

I am committing to participating in the WoAdWriMo this July. It will be a D&D 4th Edition adventure and I plan to post a PDF of it for down load.

I will probably co-opt this blog to post up NPCs and Plots as teasers (and I can always use more content.)

Snorkey: 9 more days...

Generic Three Layered Plot 0003 – Best Left Alone

I see this as a campaign suitable for Call of Cthulhu /Trail of Cthulhu or a similar setting of eldritch horror. I can, however, easily see this as one of: The emperor is a mind sucking alien; or “Solyent Green is people” though some work would need to be done to adapt it (the secret doesn't have any intrinsic power). Alternatively, nano virius, meme or similar device would work in some Sci-Fi settings. For the fantasy setting it would not be out of place to have a Mac Guffin, that if used, would destroy the world. Another good example might be “The Death Note”.

Campaign Plot: A secret that could destroy the world.

Arc Plot 1: A corrupted family is in the process of falling apart. NPCs: A father, a mother, a uncle, and a young adult brother and sister.

Intro Story: A the brother with the assistance of several rakes, assaults the heroes in vengeance for the crime of existing. The confrontation may lead to an apology from the father, or cries of justice from the mother. NPCs: Brother, rakes, father, and the mother.

Story Plot 1: The surviving sibling steals the secret from the family and flees, who gives it to a lover. The family requests the heroes assistance in the recovery of the sibling but makes no mention of the secret. NPCs: Sister, witnesses, minor victims.

Story Plot 2: The lover misuses some of its power and comes into conflict with the authorities who then recover the secret. The heroes are victims of, or witness to the bizarre affects. NPCs: Lover, victims, legal authorities.

Story Plot 3: The secret, now in the hands of a legal authority causes problems at headquarters, and is removed by a clerk who takes it elsewhere.

Interlude Plot 1: A travelogue: as the heroes travel to their next location they are witness to the affects of the secret.

Arc Plot 2: A person attempts to capture the secret.

Story Plot 7: Two factions the new keeper of the secret one to destroy it, the other to use it. During the struggle the secret keeper passes it onto a traveling priest. NPCs: Faction one representatives, Faction two representatives, Secret keeper; Traveling priest.

Story Plot 8: The priest returns to their homeland where they hide it. The secret is, of course, stolen prior to the heroes’ arrival. NPCs: victims of the secret power; Priest; Conflicted clergy and a thief.

Story Plot 9: The thief makes use of the secret’s power and is transformed horribly. The secret in inadvertently acquired by a leader’s assistant.

Interlude Plot 2: Another Travelogue, in which the heroes become witness to the corrupting power of the secret.

Arc Plot 3: From the Assistant the leader gains so much power and influence that they become, effectively, the counties’ political leader.

Story Plot 10: Shows the continuing moral and social decay caused by the secret’s presence in this land. NPCs: The corrupted; the insane; the fearful silent few.

Story Plot 11: The leader has their agents attempt to destroy an ally of the heroes.

Story Plot 12: Investigations by the heroes determines the exact nature of the secret, that the leaders assistant holds it. NPCs: the uncle.

Campaign Climax: The assistant kills the leader and attempts to use the secret final power: the heroes must prevent this. The secret may remain once the ritual is stop. If the ritual is not stopped then horrors will roam the realm again.

Generated by hand from a home brewed tarot generator that used my article “Three Layered Campaign Design”.


Generic Three Layered Plot 0002 – Land Grab

I envision this as Rail/Cattle barons’ attempt to grow their holdings, though it could easily be a wizard’s guild attempt to secure areas that are important magically or a megacorp’s attempt to secure important plants. The nefarious plan of Ruthless underling could be away for a few to achieve immortality at the cost of many; Opening a gate to a not so friendly plain of existence; the elimination of almost all men.

Campaign Plot: An organization or faction is growing its power base. NPCs: A Leader; A ruthless underling.

Arc Plot 1: An agent for the organization is acquiring real property. NPCs: Agent.

Intro Story: The heroes are commissioned by a third party to survey the lands of interest. NPCs: A handler; Local extras; Encounters within the area; The Curmudgeon (story 2).

Story Plot 1: One land owner requests the aid of the heroes in producing/planting evidence against another. NPCs: The Land owner, the villain/victim; several third parties that have information or could witness the heroes’ actions.

Story Plot 2: A hold out is resisting purchase offers and the heroes are requested to “leverage” the offer; alternatively they may side with the hold out. NPCs: Curmudgeon, other agents.

Story Plot 3: The actions of the organization have upset the locals and they have rescinded their acceptance of the purchase offers. The organization is not pleased and is sending agents to assist or hinder the heroes. NPCs: locals, agents (thugs and government officials). And the first experimental victims (see Arc 3).

Interlude Plot 1: The organization has purchased the assistance of a legal authority to force the sale. Gathering evidence of this transaction or appeal of the decision falls to the heroes. NPCs: Corrupt Judge; Bribing Agent, who works for the Ruthless Underling; minor legal officials.

Arc Plot 2: The organizations’ leader is deposed for having second thoughts about tactics; the replacement is even more ruthless. NPCs: As Campaign plot, however now the underling has power.

Story Plot 7: The fallout of the power shift within the organization. NPCs: Organization faction leaders and their supporters. During the course of this story several will be removed from power by the agents of the Ruthless Underling.

Story Plot 8: The heroes are expelled from the organization and legal authority is brought against them by agents of the Ruthless Underling. NPCs: Agents of the Ruthless Underling; Legal authorities; Helpful dispossessed associates.

Story Plot 9: The Ruthless Underling attempts to remove all opposition, both covertly and in the open, from the land and replace them with allies.

Interlude Plot 2: Rumors of war abound in various circles of society. A natural disaster affects the community featured in act 1.

Arc Plot 3: The fall of the organization.

Story Plot 10: The ruthless underling reveals a portion of their plan to a disturbed public. NPCs: A spokes person; several disturbed onlookers, reluctant supporters, and a majority that are in silent opposition.

Story Plot 11: In the face of social, political opposition the Ruthless Underling attempts to enact their plan thorough force. NPCs: Organization shock troops and agents; a few Victims.

Story Plot 12: The heroes are witness to the first stages of the plan, and through effort discover the full extent of the plan. NPCs: Organization shock troops and agents; A trader to the organization; many victims.

Campaign Climax: The heroes must remove the Ruthless Underling. In achieving that goal the hollow organization will crumble. NPCs: The Ruthless Underling and a few psychotic supporters; helpful survivors; Many organizational traders.

Generated by hand from a home brewed tarot generator that used my article “Three Layered Campaign Design”.


Generic Three Layered Plot 0001 - Who will Follow the Leader

I envision this plot as a fantasy “War of the Roses”, but it could easily be the back drop for a Interstellar war of succession; gang war; guide war; or a struggle for power within a union.

Campaign Plot: A leader is failing and needs to be replaced: NPCs: Failing Leader; 2 advisors; A pretender; the apparent replacement; the best replacement.

Arc Plot 1: An advisor is trying to improve their status. NPCs: minor official.

Intro Story: The leader’s birthday celebration. In this story we feature the leader, and the major NPCs from Arc 1 & 2.

Story Plot 1: The small community is in conflict. The rural faction feels that they are being taken advantage of; the town faction feels that the rural faction is causing shortages and military leadership is conflicted. NPCs: Rural leader and several faction representatives; Town leader and faction representatives; Military representatives.

Story Plot 2: A third party is causing problems for the community by sabotaging installations important to each faction and leaving evidence that another faction is to blame. NPCS: as in story 1, with the addition of the third party agents (of arc 3 opposition).

Story Plot 3: End of season celebrations are disrupted by the destruction of property that is important to all three factions.

Interlude Plot 1: A plague starts in a small community and will spread unless the heroes intervene. NPCs: many hapless victims; Cure peddler and a removable cause.

Arc Plot 2: Corruption in the land. A set of officials are becoming wealth through nefarious means; NPCs: Officials, victims, and the official’s right hand.

Story Plot 7: Loyalist supports the current leader and status quo in a council meeting covering the issues of Arc 1. NPCs: Loyalists and corrupt loyalists; factions leaders from Arc 2;

Story Plot 8: The apparent replacement requests the heroes’ assistance in improving their position; the pretender’s forces are in opposition.

Story Plot 9: The failing leader is removed from power by a third party with evidence that the “Best Replacement” agents are responsible.

Interlude Plot 2: The leader is removed from power and the various factions established in Arc 1 & 2 vie to place their person in the seat of power. The corrupt loyalists side with the pretender; the honest loyalists side with the apparent replacement.

Arc Plot 3: The pretender has sold out to the third party and is setting the land up for conquest.

Story Plot 10: Open attacks by a fourth party (on the third parties’ behest). NPCS: Fourth party Army leaders, troops; Third party agents; Military leaders; the pretenders evidence of the pretender’s involvement is available but well disguised.

Story Plot 11: Turning the tide of the civil war in one of three main factions. NPCs: as story 10 with a greater emphasis on Third party forces. Evidence of pretender’s involvement becomes readily available.

Story Plot 12: The pretender and the third parties’ forces hound the heroes. The heroes’ success will remove the pretender and their third party allies as power players in the conflict of succession. Failure makes the climax more difficult.

Campaign Climax: A conflict between the apparent replacement and the best replacement and the third party.

Generated by hand from a home brewed tarot generator that used my article “Three Layered Campaign Design”.


I Like Minions

Having just reading Wizards of the Coast’s D&D 4th Ed preview H1: Keep on the Shadowfell and Excerpt: Minions article and I have concluded that I like minions.

A minion in D&D 4th Ed is a moderately competent opponent for the PC/Heroes until it gets hit, at which point they die. In a typical D&D combat session they are supporting cannon fodder that will tangle up the PC’s for a couple rounds while the real opposition pounds on them. They have enough damage dealing capabilities that the heroes can’t ignore them, and good enough defenses that the heroes won’t hit them every time. These facts, coupled with a few special abilities, a weapon, and an undeniable urge to cause physical harm to the heroes.

We now have game mechanic for drunken patrons in a bar fight; the pike men in a battle; the hapless grunts that guard the temple of the evil master and every red shirt extra you have ever seen.

Most of the common NPC’s (non-plot important) that the heroes will interact with are of minion caliber when it comes to combat. The mayor of the town dosen’t needs to be a Fighter 9 with all of the stats and mechanical complexity. Just call the mayor a human minion of an appropriate level and move on. The temple priest is granted a few feats to make them useful as a resource, but will not be able to defend the village against the vampire. The bartender can now match the PC’s in damage dealing and defense without being a potential player killer.

So, as I said, I like minions and I look forward to seeing wave upon wave of hapless expendables break upon the shores of my heroes.


Three Layered Campaign Design

The process of creating complex intertwined plots can be daunting to even a veteran GM or writer. Trying to allude to events yet to come, trying to introduce major NPC, trying to keep track of 17 different threads at one time can overwhelm even the best of us.

I have come up with a simple system that creates the illusion (to the players or readers) of a very complex plot: The Three Layer Design.

Campaign Layer: This is a plot/theme that will span the whole campaign. It is the glue that binds the arcs and stories together. It represents the BBEG’s plot to take over the world; It represents the Force trying to re-balance its’ self; the rise and fall of the man who would be Emperor. In the early stages of writing this plot can be simple as it will develop complexity as you explore other arc and stories. As the campaign progresses, the heroes will interact and be affected by this plot/theme more and more.

Arc Layer: Are longer plots/themes that span multiple stories. They are reasonably self contained and have a beginning and end within the scope of several stories. Arcs plots/themes cover the BBEG’s plans to build and army, then the BBEG’s attack upon the heroes homeland followed by the heroes quest to gather the artifact that will defeat the BBEG. In a well known movie Sexology (though it was to be 9 movies originally) the arcs are: The rise of the Emperor/fall of the Jedi; The defeat of the dark side is the second arc; and the final arc (not yet filmed) covers the return of the republic and it’s struggles against the remains of the empire. In RPGs this is a unifying theme that will link several Adventures or Dungeons together.

Story Layer: Story plots are well defined and short in scope. The current story will need to be front loaded with detail and NPC as heroes will interact with this plot immediately, though the other stories do not need to be planned until they are needed. In an Arc involving the BBEG quest to build an army: the stories would be along the lines of: Monsters raiding a mine; Investigate the disappearance of a village; and defending a frontier settlement against a Zombie horde. In RPG’s it is represented by The Adventure or The Dungeon.

Planning the Session

When planning your session simply pull one or two details from either the Campaign or arc layers to include in your story. Allowing the heroes to interact with these details, locations or NPCs will allow the heroes to develop a relationship with them.

Secret Sauce: Story plots, Arc plots or Campaign plots do not need to be related to each other. You can introduce an Story or Arc NPC’s or locations in supportive or neutral rolls that are unrelated and uninvolved in the current story. Then when the NPC shows up in opposition to the heroes the reaction should be visceral.

Example 1: A classic D&D series

In the classic G1-3, D1-3, and Q1 modules from TSR (now wizards of the Coast/Hasbro) brakes down thusly:

Campaign Plot: A demon queen is trying to take over the world (at least in the reprint).

Arc Plot 1: Giants are attacking human settlements.

Arc Plot 2: Decent into the Underdark and beyond.

Stories: Each of the published adventures is a single story plot, as they feature NPC from the future and past stories.

Example 2: The Cranston Campaign

Campaign Plot: Bug from the impossibly distant future sends a parasitic fragment of its’ self back to the heroes present with the goal of opening a gate to the future.

Arc Plot 1: (unrelated to the Campaign Plot): A war between a Voodoo Priestess and a horrible creation called a Skin Changer.

Arc Plot 2: Fun with time travel

Story 1: Intro Adventure: A party where the bug shows up and chaos ensues.

Story 2: Investigate the Cranston building

Story 10: The smiling man (skin changer) tries manipulating the Heroes into killing the Voodoo Priestess

Story 12: In which a future version of a hero comes back in time to kill an NPC.

And so on.


Generic Story Plot 00009

Main Character

Description: A violent storm.
Past: Three generations ago, when a storm like this previously hit, the community was nearly destroyed. There are a few reminders of what happen previously
Wants: None, though the destruction of innocents is probable.
Strength: Fierce winds, and abundant precipitation.
Weakness: Due to the passage of time most of the inhabitants of the community are unconcerned about the coming storm.
Obstacle to "wants": A leader of the community fears financial loss in the event of an evacuation and thus is discouraging community members from doing so.

Act I

Premise: A old person is recounting events of the previous storm to the few who will listen.
Circumstances: A public forum where the authorities attempt to remove the old person.
Start of action/"wants": As the arrest occurs, the heroes are witness to the first indicators of how powerful the storm is.
Plot point: The community leader is unwilling to remove people from harm and is certain that nothing will happen.

Act II

Low point: Authorities block evacuation routes even as the storm intensifies.
Plot point: The storm causes a failure in the protective systems that surrounds the community. In turn innocents are threatened.


Climax: During the peak of the storm structures are broken, lives are lost, and the leader may come to regret their choices.
Denouement: Cleaning up from the aftermath of the storm.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia


Generic Story Plot 00008

Main Character

Description: Treacherous servant.
Past: The servant was previously betrayed by their master.
Wants: The servant wants to destroy the family by revealing the families darkest secrets.
Strength: The servant has extensive evidence to back up their accusations.
Weakness: The spouse of the servant disagrees with the persons’ plan of actions.
Obstacle to "wants": The family’s leader is dangerous and works actively to remove threats to the family.

Act I

Premise: The person has chosen to reveal some of the evidence to the heroes.
Circumstances: An anonymous package nearly intercepted by agents of the family.
Start of action/"wants": The heroes are witness to a scuffle between a messenger and the agents, both are fighting over a package clearly labeled with one or more of the heroes names .
Plot point: The family’s leader wants the package back.

Act II

Low point: The family’s leader uses their power with the authorities to have the heroes perused.
Plot point: The family’s leader will not stop in their pursuit of the package.


Climax: The servant comes forward as the family attempts to prevent the revelation.
Denouement The heroes reputation amongst high society is harmed, but is bolstered with the lower class.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia


Generic Story Plot 00007

Main Character

Description: A Spy or Agent for a powerful (possibly national) entity.
Past: The person has had a hard life and is questioning the directives and intentions of their masters.
Wants: To learn a secret.
Strength: The person is very skilled as a spy, and is very stealthy.
Weakness: A person that the spy cares about is beginning to suspect the spy.
Obstacle to "wants": The “secret” is well guarded.

Act I

Premise: '18. The Moon: A breaking and entering gone wrong.
Circumstances: The persons equipment fails, the situation has changed from what was expected.
Start of action/"wants": The heroes are present when the break in is discovered.
Plot point: The existence of the secret is reveled to the heroes just before it is relocated to a different location.

Act II

Low point: The secret’s keeper becomes aware of the spy’s from a person that the spy cares about.
Plot point: The spy reveals additional details about the secret’s nature to the heroes.


Climax: All parties to the plot become involved in a tussle for the secret.
Denouement: The spy’s masters are very aware of the heroes and feel very strongly about the actions that the heroes take during the climax.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia


The One Month Mark

WhooHoo! Today I am celebrating one month of postings to this blog. I know that you, the hypothetical reader cares only slightly less than I do, but given my previous track record of 12 posts in over 2 years: I see this achievement as more of a personal victory over my own procrastination than anything else.

The Future
In 18 days is the release of D&D 4th edition, to which I hope to post a review that first day. I also plan to post several NPC (with 4th ed stat blocks) shortly thereafter. It is my intention to make use of the generic base npc templates for quick characterization and plot incorporation.

Shortly I will to make several posts on a couple world ideas that I hope would be useful as starting points for peoples' new 4th edition games. They include:
Clock world

All of the worlds will reflect the new "points of light" theme of 4th ed but will otherwise be system neutral.

I also plan to post some more generic NPC and Plots that are instances of the Base NPC's but are more tied to a setting. As well as additional suggestions on how to use the Base NPC and plots in writing and game design.

That is all for now.
Thanks for reading,

Snorkey: needs to create some more random generators


Generic Story Plot 00006

Main Character

Description: A soldier trying to get ahead.
Past: Is married to a spouse from a wealthy and powerful family.
Wants: To live happily ever after.
Strength: The Soldier is deeply in love with the spouse.
Weakness: The spouse is unhappy with their partnership with the person.
Obstacle to "wants": A third party wants to become involved with the spouse (they see the spouses unhappiness).

Act I

Premise: The third party attempts to eliminate the Soldier through a fourth party.
Circumstances: The person is recovering from an injury when agents for the third party attempt to cause harm to the person.
Start of action/"wants": The heroes are visiting someone who is also receving medical assistance when the attack occurs. .
Plot point: The soldier is further injured.

Act II

Low point: The soldier is nearly killed by agents of the third party.
Plot point: A revelation that the third party is the superior of the soldier.


Climax: A confrontation with the third party, the spouse and the soldier.
Denouement Political/social consequences from the heroes’ involvement in the events.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia .


Generic Story Plot 00005

Main Character

Description: A youth with romantic intent.
Past: The Mother of the person once had a reputation in society as being ruthless and willing to break anyone to get what she wanted.
Wants: The Person is romantically interested in the child of a moneylender. The moneylender, of course objects to the formation of a relationship very strongly. The child is romantically interested in a third party. The parent also objects to the third person.
Strength: The person is very socially connected.
Weakness: The person lacks material wealth and resources. They also lack caution.
Obstacle to "wants": The moneylender has a moderate organization and a large amount of wealth with which to foil the young romantic. The child not interested in the person. The home and workplace of the moneylender is very secure.

Act I

Premise: The money lender introduces a hero to their child and the youth becomes intensely jealous of the hero.
Circumstances: The meeting occurs in a public but confined (like a restaurant or similar).
Start of action/"wants": The person arranges for the hero to be embarrassed through the actions of a servant.
Plot point: The person will taunt and threaten the hero in a safe (for the person) manner.

Act II

Low point: The money lender is financially harmed by the person. The person attempts to harm the hero politically/legally (by calling in a favor).
Plot point: The Person further taunts and threatens the hero (via the same “safe” mechanism as before).


Climax: The person attempts to “rescue” the child from their parent. If this succeeds, then the rejection by the child causes the person to try to harm the hero.
Denouement: The persons interests turn to another hero.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia .


The Murder Mystery Paradox

In most murder mysteries that I have read (which, admittedly is not all that many) much of the heroes time is spend trying to figure out who could have done all of those horrible murders. After inspecting clues, verifying alibis, and much puzzlement the heroes eventually figure it out: No one person is responsible for all the murders, several people are.

The same goes for Players (and thus their characters, the heroes) and plots: Players will assign all of the wrong doing that happens to whoever is the most apparent villain in your story. By combining and merging plot lines into the same time line the GM can create a very complex appearing plot with relative ease.


Generic Story Plot 00004

Main Character

Description: An Arrogant scholar.
Past: Married into their advanced position by becoming engaged to the establishments’ leader’s only child.
Wants: The spouses’ parents position at the establishment.
Strength: The person has extensive connections to the body that decides who manages the educational establishment.
Weakness: The persons plans seem to suffer from “bad luck” and have a way of failing dramatically.
Obstacle to "wants": The establishment’s leader is grooming the person to be there replacement (in several years). The leading body is largely behind this plan.

Act I

Premise: The person’s spouse is concerned that the persons’ actions may damage their reputations and chances of success.
Circumstances: The spouse covertly contacts the heroes through a blind drop, or agent.
Start of action/"wants": The heroes are requested to help ensure that the persons’ latest plan fails quietly, instead of dramatically.
Plot point: The person’s actions are exposed to the heroes.

Act II

Low point: Dismissal by the scholar, preceding their continued action on their plot to destroy the establishments’ leader.
Plot point: The establishments’ leader becomes terribly ill.


Climax: The role of the spouse is exposed, a parent is rescued, and the person may receive rewards or justice.
Denouement: The establishment is restored, or diminished.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia .


Generic Story Plot 00003

Main Character

Description: A person of no wealth or means.
Past: The Person was once successful until a series of poor choices lead them to financial and social ruin.
Wants: They plan to destroy a local business person whom wronged them.
Strength: The person is slow, deliberate, and very resourceful. The victim is a creature of habit.
Weakness: The person is blinded by anger. The desire to destroy the victim is overwhelming and will be pursued at any cost.
Obstacle to "wants": The victim is planning a trip and will become unreachable in a very short time.

Act I

Premise: The heroes become collateral damage from an act of sabotage by the person.
Circumstances: The heroes are at the victims place of business attempting to acquire or dispose of something of value.
Start of action/"wants": The item that the heroes desire goes missing in the chaos of the sabotages aftermath. This is after the paid for or before they receive payment for the item.
Plot point: Casual examination of the evidence may lead the heroes to believe that the victim was trying to cheat them. The victim goes missing.

Act II

Low point: A child informs and presents evidence of that the victim is not responsible.
Plot point: More “bad luck” for the business persons interests and family, including the murder of an innocent third person, apparently by the victims only child.


Climax: The confrontation between the heroes, the person, and the victim in an abandoned place.
Denouement: Restoration of the victim, restitution or replacement is given for the desired item.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia .


Generic Story Plot 00002

Main Character

Description: A faithful person in a troubled land.
Past: New to the area, the person sees corruption and wishes to restore faith and integrity to the land.
Wants: The person wishes to establish their faith in this area.
Strength: The person is very well financed and very strong.
Weakness: The person was previously involved in a devastating series of scandals.
Obstacle to "wants": The person perceives threats from several organizations, while these threats are not real; the persons’ actions may cause those organizations to work in opposition to the person. Those that know of the person’s dark past will also be seen as threats.

Act I

Premise: The Heroes witness the verbal assault by followers of the person upon a family.
Circumstances: The child of the family has circumstantial evidence of past wrong doing by the person.
Start of action/"wants": A visit to the construction sight of a new religious building.
Plot point: The person’s agents bring legal action against another, well established, religious organization.

Act II

Low point: A riot of faithful.
Plot point: The brokering of a meeting between the various involved parties.


Climax: Confrontation between the organizations will end in disaster unless the heroes act.
Denouement: A land at peace or in flames depending upon the actions/inactions of the heroes.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia .


Generic Story Plot 00001

Main Character

Description: A leader of an Organization.
Past: The country has been plagued by internal turmoil and corruption.
Wants: To “clean house”: they are planning to remove the corrupt elements within the organization.
Strength: They are patent, cautious, and careful. The person plans to have the purge occur over several months to a few years. Hopefully before the corrupt elements do too much more damage.
Weakness: The Leaders’ agents are, for the most part, the same people that the leader is trying to remove, but work for a third external organization.
Obstacle to "wants": The corrupt elements are well organized and entrenched; any evidence of wrong doing will point to an expendable underling.

Act I

Premise: The Heroes are introduced to a person who is the victim of false evidence of wrong doing. The evidence was planted by individuals who are in the person’s organizational superiors.
Circumstances: The person has been working within the limits of the organization and has managed to achieve great works. If the false evidence comes to light then all of their past good works would become suspect; causing damage to the persons, the leaders’ and the organizations reputation.
Start of action/"wants": Agents for the leader contact the heroes and offer assistance in planting counter evidence against the superior.
Plot point: The superior is getting married and the agents suggest that by turning this event into a social disaster, the superior will be totally destroyed.

Act II

Low point: The leader’s agents turn upon the heroes.
Plot point: A servant of the leader brokers a meeting between the heroes and the Leader.


Climax: The Apparent power behind the Agents is revealed and the agent’s source of power is destroyed by the actions of the heroes.
Denouement: The spouse of the leader (the true power behind the agents) departs and goes into hiding.

This is based upon a tarot generator found on Abulafia .



Core Concept:Street harden criminal.
Appearance:Sharply dress but with a horrible complexion and very little hair.
Personality:Very Friendly, if a bit shallow.
Family:Troubled, the spouse doesn't appreciate time that the person spends away.
Friends:The person's friends are numerous and dangerous.
Enemies:The person considers their patron, a person of great wealth and power to be "in their way" and wishes to eliminate them.
Formative Exp:An early encounter with a law enforcer has lead to their current violent life.
Party Ties:The person is connected to the heroes though a third party who is in partnership with the person and the heroes.
Fears/Dreams:The person is torn between home life and their chosen life, the loss of ether is not tolerable.
Hobbies/Interests:As a nervous habit the person will fold and refold paper sculptures until they fall apart into so much confetti.
Blind spots/Breaking Points:The person has a vision of the future, and is working toward that vision as they believe is best. They cannot see repercussions that stem from their actions that do not lead to the vision.
History:The person was betrayed by a friend but was discovered and the friend was punished by the person. This still haunts the person.
Home:The activities of the person have placed a strain upon their relationship.
Relationships:To the person there are only two types of people: those that have power and those who follow power. They are respectful to those with power and disdainful to people that follow them.
Agendas:The person wants to be in charge.
Motivation:They do not like to have people with power over them.
Plot Hook 1:The organizations leader introduces the Heroes to the person in hopes that the heroes will bring the person back into line.
Plot Hook 2:The heroes encounter the young child of the person, who gives them a gift. The item is very important to the person.
Plot Hook 3:The person requests the heroes' assistance in a plot to diminish the organization's leader.
Plot Hook 4:The person has decided to assist the Heroes in their current venture. They will exercise all the care and delicacy of a bull in a china shop.
Generated using a custom tarot dealing script based upon the suggestion spreads Errant Dreams as a creativity tool.



Core Concept:Recovering Law Enforcer
Appearance:In a casual setting their presentation will be clean and well kept; in a professional setting they will be in attire appropriate to their profession. They tend to keep their hair a bit longer than is normally acceptable.
Personality:Reserved but friendly. They consider themselves law abiding yet ever so slightly above the law.
Family:They have an ailing sibling that they are caring for.
Friends:They have a wide circle of friends that are supportive and generally caring.
Enemies:Their own fame and success have brought with them scrutiny and may expose their past deeds.
Formative Exp:In their youth, in a moment of haste and anger they did a something that is socially unacceptable, possibly criminal. The deed its self is not generally known but the person fears exposure.
Party Ties:The person has been following the public (and a few private) exploits of the heroes and has become somewhat enamored with one of them.
Fears/Dreams:They dream of success and fear the return of their father.
Hobbies/Interests:They engage in a common sport that demands much skill, but less stamina or strength.
Blind spots/Breaking Points:They believe that one particular subset of society or culture is ether above the law or responsible for all wrong doings.
History:In addition to the aforementioned trouble, there is an semi-active investigation into the event that they participated in.
Home:The ailing sibling is verbally abusive and mentally domineering.
Relationships:The person is genuinely friendly, but very reserved about personal details.
Agendas:To cure the sibling; catch the criminals; and ensure that details of their involvement in the event never come to light.
Motivation:They have a drive to undo the wrongs that they feel that both they and their father have done.
Plot Hook 1:The father seeks the heroes' assistance in contacting this person.
Plot Hook 2:The heroes witness the mistreatment of the person at the hands of the ill sibling in a semi public setting.
Plot Hook 3:The person believes that the heroes are responsible or connected to some criminal activity; based upon information they were given by a third party.
Plot Hook 4:New information has come to light in the event that the person participated in, and the person is taking measures to insure that it goes back into the darkness.
Generated using a custom tarot dealing script based upon the suggestion spreads Errant Dreams as a creativity tool.



Core Concept:Artist
Appearance:Average in appearance, and composure. Their attire is commonplace and unremarkable.
Personality:Passionate and hyperbolic; they will move from joy to despair rapidly.
Family:The person has a spouse that is genuinely supportive and compassionate.
Friends:The person has a circle of parasites around them, attempting to leach off their talent and success.
Enemies:The person that represents in business dealings is dishonest and is causing them harm.
Formative Exp:In the past the person received very bad news, which, though it initially broke the person, inspired them.
Party Ties:Through some strange coincidence the subject matter of the person's art seems to represent the Heroes: the art either depicts their actions and achievements OR it shows their likeness.
Fears/Dreams:The person has tortured dreams, relating to the bad news.
Hobbies/Interests:Escape, the person attempts to escape the internal force that drives their artistic expression.
Blind spots/Breaking Points:The person is unaware of their moods, their own emotional state, and thus is unable to control them.
History:The person's agent and parasite friends have long been using the person to further their own success, to the harm of the person's finances and reputation.
Home:The person's rollercoaster of emotion has not helped their home life with their spouse, however the agent has cause more friction.
Relationships:The person is quick to dismiss new people, though with time can form strong bonds.
Agendas:To express the artistic vision as a way of diminishing the effect that the "bad news" has upon them.
Motivation:The person is driven to distraction in their attempt to purge the pain that the news caused them.
Plot Hook 1:The Heroes are asked to assist the agent in the delivery of one of the person's works of art.
Plot Hook 2:The persons spouse wishes the heroes help in removing the influence of the Agent or the person's parasitic friends.
Plot Hook 3:The heroes are witness to the foul actions of the Agent.
Plot Hook 4:The person wishes to become acquainted with the heroes and to use them as the subject or medium of their next commission.
Generated using a custom tarot dealing script based upon the suggestion spreads Errant Dreams as a creativity tool.



Core Concept:Foolish Leader
Appearance:This person is older, and has let their selves fall into a state of disrepair. They often are missing or wearing mismatch articles of clothing. Their coiffure is disheveled and unkempt.
Personality:This person is intelligent but very distracted and forgetful.
Family:This persons family, though very happy, is at a distance and unable to support this person through their current troubles.
Friends:A trusted advisor, who genuinely supports the person.
Enemies:Fate it's self seems to be against this person, as everything they undertakes seems to fail.
Formative Exp:Initially the person was very successful, but as of recent many of the parties that supported the person have become very critical of the persons actions.
Party Ties:One of the heroes has connections to a party that is under the leadership of the person.
Fears/Dreams:The leader has taken a fancy to a prospective romantic partner, and dreams of advancing the relationship.
Hobbies/Interests:The person enjoys writing poetry and is quite adept at it. The topics chosen are often very light and joyous in nature.
Blind spots/Breaking Points:The person is a kind, compassionate leader, who is unable to make decisions that cause harm to any party. This is, in turn, is causing harm.
History:The person is making well informed, bad decisions. It is not that the decisions them selves' are bad, just inappropriate for the situation or poorly timed.
Home:The home life of the person is rather isolated and lonely.
Relationships: The person is honest, and faithful.
Agendas:The person wishes to lead their organization out of their current situations and restore status and success to the organization.
Motivation:The person wishes to succeed.
Plot Hook 1:The heroes' assistance is requested by the Advisor to assistant in a mission to improve the financial status of the organization.
Plot Hook 2:A member of the organization requests the heroes' assistance in preventing the person's current plan from being successful. The agent fears that the plan will harm their standing in the organization.
Plot Hook 3:The heroes are witness to the failure of the person's latest plan to restore status to the organization. The heroes may be called upon to help pick up the pieces or rescue victims.
Plot Hook 4:The person has a plan, a grand plan, to restore status to the organization and it involves the heroes.
Generated using a custom tarot dealing script based upon the suggestion spreads Errant Dreams as a creativity tool.



Core Concept:Displaced Traveler
Appearance:This person displays a well kept appearance and is well dressed.
Personality:Suspicious and narrow minded.
Family:This person's family is trouble and in a state of decay.
Friends:In this place no one knows this person well enough to be considered a friend.
Enemies:A legal authority from this persons homeland is pursuing this person.
Formative Exp:A recent flash of insight inspired this person to come to this place.
Party Ties:A possession of this person may end up in the heroes' hands.
Fears/Dreams:In the future the person hopes to restore their family.
Hobbies/Interests:The person excels at learning new languages, and loves to sprinkle a foreign phrase or two into a conversation.
Blind spots/Breaking Points:Though they understand the local culture they are missing some vital bit of social behavior that will set them apart and isolate them.
History:The person unintentionally caused harm to a powerful party in their homeland. They are traveling to both hide from the authorities and to find a way to make amends.
Home:The person is currently a transient and doesn't have a home, if they did it would be well organized on the surface but horribly disorganized in the non-public spaces.
Relationships:This person will go out of their way to help a friend, which is what got them in their current situation.
Agendas:This person only hopes to avoid pursuit, but need to replenish their resources.
Motivation:The person wants to make right the events in their homeland, so that they may return home.
Plot Hook 1:The person, in a fit of loneliness, attempts to talk to one of the Heroes.
Plot Hook 2:The person requests assistance from the heroes in facilitating their return to their homeland. Would it be possible for the heroes to deliver a message? Take a package? Open negotiations.
Plot Hook 3:The person knows of someone else, in yet a third land, who might be able to assist the person and the heroes in furthering their goals.
Plot Hook 4:The Enemy has arrived, and is in active pursuit of the person. To this event, the heroes may be simply a witness to, or may assist either party.
Generated using a custom tarot dealing script based upon the suggestion spreads Errant Dreams as a creativity tool.



Core Concept:Flawed Scholar
Appearance:Disheveled and unkempt. Their dress, though once fashionable has become shabby.
Personality:Domineering, judgmental and stubborn.
Family:Shattered: the person's family has fallen apart due to their actions.
Friends:This person has only acquaintances of necessity. They are subservient to those with power above them, and hostile to those below them.
Enemies:This person perceives those with power above them as enemies to be destroyed. Actually this person has harmed enough people with their actions that there are many people who would wish them great harm.
Formative Exp:The person had one great and stunning success in the distant past. After years of frustration trying to surpass this achievement, they have become bitter and opportunistic.
Party Ties:This person may be the mentor of someone that they consulted with in the past.
Fears/Dreams:They know that they could be great (again), if it were not for the sabotage by superiors and the incompetence of their inferiors.
Hobbies/Interests:Snooping on the works and researches of other scholar, usually with an eye toward theft or derailment.
Blind spots/Breaking Points:The person cannot see that they are the cause of their own failings. The person doesn't want to see anyone else, especially one of their inferiors, succeed.
History:The person has destroyed sever peers carriers through theft and covert harm.
Home:Their home life, though once opulent, has decayed and is empty.
Relationships:Currently there are none, but for those willing to deal with the corrosive personality, they will find a desperately lonely individual.
Agendas:To recreate the success of the past.
Motivation:The person is greedy for the feeling that the past success generated.
Plot Hook 1:The person wants to hire the heroes to steal from a peer.
Plot Hook 2:The person is near an actual breakthrough though the real success is coming from someone under the person. The heroes are witness to the results of the person eliminating the underling.
Plot Hook 3:The heroes become witness to the actions of the person when they liberate some research from a peer.
Plot Hook 4:A peer of the person wishes to collaborate with the person but needs protection from their nefarious ways.
Generated using a custom tarot dealing script based upon the suggestion spreads Errant Dreams as a creativity tool.