GM Workshop

A community-created and maintained place for Game Masters of all systems to bounce ideas around. It's a place for inspiration and sharing tips.


Pre-Made Character Backgrounds

   
Don't be afraid to plant red herrings. A story can get really interesting if you think you know what's going to happen, only to realize that you've been following the wrong clues, or the clues don't mean what you thought they meant.

You know, a while back I had a DM force all of the characters to use a book from the Central Casting series called "Heroes of Legend"

Which is a character generator. It has some interesting effects that can mod characters in a way, that isn't normally permitted. You may want to look into it.

Well here are the some of the pre-made character backgrounds for my player characters, feel free to give me feedback on what you would change.







This is as far as I've gotten in terms of character backgrounds. So far I've planned that the PCs will awaken in the manner that I've described above. They have been the victims of some cultist ritual. Ambushed on the side of the road, and dragged off into the woods to be the sacrifices to their deranged gods. However for some reason, the PCs have come back to life as sentient undead. And now must figure out who killed them and why, and if possible come back to true life.

I'd greatly appreciate any feed back on the three backgrounds I've made, such as things you'd change or add to it, and also I'd like to hear any other ideas for additional backgrounds. I have more than three players and like to give them more choices if possible. I'm trying to keep the backgrounds mostly class free so that one person doesn't feel so confined to one role. With the exception of the mage as magic in my setting is feared and misunderstood. Thanks in advanced!

You've done a good job I think.
I would take out the line "You are dead" from each one, let them draw their own conclusions (although you've already spelt it out to them), it lends a bit more mystery and enigma as to their exact condition.

Also, have you thought about making the links between their deaths more specific? It's a good way to bond the PCs, if they believe their deaths/murderers are connected.
I love the idea of a murder mystery where they investigate their own deaths!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gygaxphobia View Post
Also, have you thought about making the links between their deaths more specific? It's a good way to bond the PCs, if they believe their deaths/murderers are connected.
I love the idea of a murder mystery where they investigate their own deaths!
I'm planning for them to have died at the same time, killed by the same group people. Everyone but the soldier will have been put into their own shallow grave, forming a ring around the tree that the soldier was nailed to. What they'll figure out is that they were the victims of some sort of cultist ritual. Sacrifices to some terrible, dark power in my game world. How they came back to life will be a campaign long mystery for my players.

My ultimate worry here is that although this is a great idea, it seems the premise of the game will cut itself short as soon the mystery unravels.

This leads to two options:

The GM is stingy with giving out past details so the plot doesn't end too quickly which thereby frustrates the players or, a really cool game idea aborts itself as soon as the mystery is solved, and it seems there needs to be a much larger picture that requires that they have died and their return is an oversight.

This was one of my chief complaints with the writing of Fallout: New Vegas (where the courier is killed just prior to the game start). While the rest of the story is cool, the reason for him dying was too mundane to be incoporated into a plot so incredibly huge. You really get the idea that the character is just some dude that carries packages that gets caught up in things, especially with the newest expansion pack that goes a little into his history prior to death. While that's all well and good, you do get the sense while you're playing that you're not particularly special, even when you get reputation and such, it's like, well of course all the civilians are afraid of me, I just took out an entire enemy encampment five minutes ago.

As such it makes the character feel super mundane in a world of fantastical giants like Mr. House and the Think Tank at Big MT. While the game is awesome, it really suffers in this area, so take a page from that book and see what you can do to prevent that from happening, assuming you didn't already.

Know in advance why the PC's NEEDED to die, and exactly why the didn't and why that's completely plausible even if fantastic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by World of L_Tiene View Post
My ultimate worry here is that although this is a great idea, it seems the premise of the game will cut itself short as soon the mystery unravels.

Know in advance why the PC's NEEDED to die, and exactly why the didn't and why that's completely plausible even if fantastic.
Well here's what I have planned as far as a plot. The PCs were killed by a cult dedicated to one of the dark gods of my game. Their deaths were part of a ritual designed to reawaken one of the god's emissaries in the physical world. However, one of the spiritual entities in my setting, the shepard of the dead, wishes to not see this being return to life, so brings the PCs back to life (partially) to prevent this being's resurrection. She does this because, the PCs are tied to the emissary's essence and so will be able to sense those who bear his mark. So the bulk of the campaign will be the PCs uncovering the plot behind their deaths as well as preventing the summoning of this terrible demon thing.

The character's pasts would come into this by having important people from their previous lives as members of the cult. Each PC was picked due to their relationship with one of the cult members. A requirement of the ritual might have been something like: the blood of love slain. So over the course of the mystery the PCs would begin to realize that their murderers are someone who was once close to them.




 

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Blog   Myth-Weavers Status