Huzzah! Friday at last! I’ve got a lot of things swirling around, both professionally and personally, but whenever Friday comes I get a sense of hopefulness. I can’t imagine I’m the only one, and for me it’s fitting that my regular gaming group meets on Fridays now. (Summer’s are tough, though.) Let’s dive into another story for #RPGaDay 2016!
5) What story does your group tell about your character?
Another tough one considering I’m behind the screen for the vast majority of the time. And, when I do play, I actually tend to fade my character in the background and enjoy the scenario, letting it unfold as we move along. The adventure is more interesting than my character for me so my own character moments are not memorable for me.
So I’m going to cheat a bit and use a story about an NPC I created. This goes back to the late 90’s, 97 or 98 I think, when we were running my Cosmic Forge campaign. This was a sprawling epic story ripped directly from Dragonlance, but I filed the serial numbers off and created my own setting, so it was special to us. Early in the campaign, when the characters were roughly 4th level (this was AD&D 2E so levels came slow), the party was captured and thrown into the city jail by the forces of the Red Dragon Highlord.
One of the NPCs I created as a lackey to the Red Dragon Highlord was an elf fighter/mage named Gaelvus Highwind. He was evil to the core, no subtle nuances here, and to show it I had him steal a treasured object from one of the players – a girdle of hill giant strength, the weakest of the giant girdles (Strength 19 it conveyed as I recall) but it was the most valued item held by the elf fighter of the group (Gilthas Oakleaf).
If you want to get a party to hate an NPC, have them steal something like this. The player, and subsequently the rest of the party, hated Gaelvus Highwind with a surprising ferocity. They ended up tracking down the elf fighter/mage, which was coinciding with their tracking of the Red Dragon Highlord, and in the ruins of a mountain stronghold they confronted their hated foe. I think it was Gilthas Oakleaf who faced off against Gaelvus Highwind on the ramparts of the castle while a great battle raged below, the rest of the party focusing on rescuing captured slaves. Gaelvus Highwind was defeated, falling seemingly to his death, and I let Gilthas get his girdle back. (There’s a title for a surreal movie – How Gilthas Got His Girdle Back.)
Of course, Gaelvus Highwind came back, but I think my players still remember the name of that elf fighter/mage who stole something from them.