Party glue

  • 9 Replies
Party glue
« on: July 01, 2012, 09:02:41 AM »
1) John Harper warns what people frequently do wrong in World of Dungeons is start out saying "Everyone make characters and I'll come up with something that will work for everybody."
Quote from: John Harper
Never do that. Tell them what their PC group is about (and revise as needed based on what the players think). Tell them to make characters that fit that group concept.

I like to start with, "You are a band of desperate thieves and cut-throats with no job prospects or connections, forced to delve into monster-infested ruins to scavenge for coins to survive. Many of you will not survive. Those that do may become rich!"

But it could be, "The church of the Hawk-Headed God has conscripted dangerous criminals -- that's you -- into exploring the ancient, sacred tomb-city recently unearthed by an earthquake, in exchange for pardoning your various crimes."?

2) Dndwithpornstars warns sandbox games need roguish and not upright heroes. Upright heroes act to preserve the status quo and so need a plot; they're inherently reactionary. Whereas, roguish heroes' drive to challenge the status quo works extremely well with sandbox games, like Dungeon World.

I've used both these warnings to compile following list. I hope you find use for it.

Why should a handful of individuals with varying skill-sets come together and trust each other enough to travel cross-country, delve into dangerous places, and fight monsters side-by-side?

  • Poverty - climb out of the gutter any way they can
  • Indebted - owe money, fealty or favour to same person/organisation
  • Heist - working on a really big con/theft/deception
  • Mercenaries - bounty hunters, field assistants, brigands...
  • Disaster - life-changing, e.g. village destroyed, ongoing war, famine,...
  • Survival - fleeing death and destruction or finding shelter and sustenance
  • Escape - fleeing persecution: slaves, gladiators, prisoners, criminals,...
  • Coerced - bullied into furthering goals of or entertaining <blackmailer/kidnapper/god>
  • Conscripted - hoping for a pardon, citizenship,...
  • Common enemy - Bring down the <something or one you don't like>, revenge
  • Rescue - loved one, princess, persecuted people
  • Reavers - shared love of pillage and plunder
  • Pilgrimage - holy journey(s)
  • Knowledge - Uncover the mystery of something: ancient and forgotten, personal and unnerving, dangerous and growing
  • Diplomacy - representative of different factions on a mission
  • Religious - serve the same religion
  • Crusaders - Crusade against <distant threat or monster type>
  • Family - characters all related; tradition; inheritance conditions
  • Company - members of guild/clan/military unit
  • Revolutionaries  - Unite the land against <force for status quo>
« Last Edit: July 01, 2012, 09:08:12 AM by watergoesred »

Re: Party glue
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2012, 10:25:24 AM »



  • 777
Re: Party glue
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2012, 09:30:44 PM »
Awesome Oli!
How about during chargen (but before bonds) have each player choose one or two of the options from the list? Ask questions and use the answers as always.

Re: Party glue
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2012, 09:42:05 PM »
Do you see choosing from the list conflicting with the starting bonds?

Re: Party glue
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2012, 10:52:29 PM »
Hey Nathan!
Yeah, I was thinking more along the lines of the group picking one or two options from the list

You could use it for ideas about each PC background and motivation for adventuring, but I was thinking more along the lines of idea for backgrounds or motivation that the PCs share or have in common.

I'm not sure about them conflicting with bonds. Rather than be in the bonds territory--largely personal relationships, perceptions and attitudes--I thought of these lists as less about personal connections and more about the larger and longer term conditions that drove/drive the PCs together.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2012, 08:04:05 AM by watergoesred »

Re: Party glue
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2012, 02:33:25 PM »
Reminds me of the party sheets in WFRP3. Maybe the reason why the party is together gives a special move?

Re: Party glue
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2012, 06:59:18 PM »
Developing a party sheet would be an excellent community project, since it won't be a part of the core game for a variety of reasons. It would be kind of like a pc front.

Re: Party glue
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2012, 07:22:48 PM »
The players collectively create a PC Front! Interesting...

Re: Party glue
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2012, 07:33:16 PM »
The party playbook was a thing at one time.

Re: Party glue
« Reply #9 on: July 04, 2012, 03:38:59 AM »
We had all these lofty ideas for a Party playbook that would incorporate a bunch of separate mechanics and create some framework stuff for generating the team and what they're about but had to scrap it because the parts I loved, sage hated and the parts sage loved, I hated.  We couldn't make it work for our complete vision of the game.

That said, I'll probably hack something together for my home game.  I'd love to kibitz on what that might look like down the line.