Help with new situation

Hi Guys,

Just wondering if some one good offer any advice to making this situation work better?

“With your new home in trouble, the curse has affected everyone from your lord to the lowest villain and you need to find someone to help you and yours. Luckily the lord of Talenbog has invited you and a number of other guests from the region to his sons wedding, you must not squander this chance to find an ally…”

I know what I am try to convey and set up.

So want to give it the sense of urgency that situations need as well as setting up an introduction sry adventure for new players. I thought that a wedding would give me the great opportunity to introduce mechanics:

  • finding gifts
  • socializing with other guests
  • dancing
  • finding people to help
  • researching the curse
    And maybe a dual of wits and or duel depending on how everything goes.

Anyway any advice would be welcome

I have only run the trouble in hochen and these players are all brand new, so have never played BW before. Everyone is human and the setting is a newly colonized region in the north, similar setting tech level as GoT, Willow, Witcher and the Black Company

The most important thing for a scenario is the players beliefs. You can’t make an interesting session by just having an event, there needs to be a strong drive for the characters to get into trouble. Who is the Lord of Talenbog? Why do they care?


I like to think of a setting up a new situation as almost like incepting a play—a good situation will imply a bunch of relevant characters, who are already tied into it. I like to sit down with my players with the nugget of a situation and then brainstorm as many potential characters as possible that feel like they could show up in a play or movie about this idea. Then everybody picks a character they’re drawn to, and the others become possible NPCs, or are written off. I think it’s a good practice to have character brainstorming and situation development happen simultaneously, rather than shoehorning [the DM’s setting] and [the players’ preconceived characters] together after the fact. Burning Wheel works best when the characters fit naturally into the situation, and it’s much easier to write their beliefs.


This exactly, situation burning can work as a solo effort, but is best to do cooperatively

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What’s the curse?

Who is going to oppose the characters and why?


Thanks for your replies so here is what I was thinking. The situation would be introduced before starting the character burning but as a jumping point, which is why I specifically didn’t define what or where there new home is, what the curse is, or who the duke is. The only think I have defined is a place name (and only to give us a starting point). I suppose what I really wanted to know was how do other people create there starting situations to engage players. As from reading tha dvice in revised gold and the codex you need something to present to players to help define the sandbox for there character generation, but without being too specific. My problem i don’t know what that line is.

Thanks again for the help so far

For me, it depends on how much creative work I’m putting on the players.

If the players are super amped about playing certain types of characters with their own goals in mind, then my situation is basically just connective tissue. With me (or us, more often) trying to create a situation that evokes all of those interests.

If the player’s aren’t sure what they wanna do, I try to come up with something that I am super amped to explore or play out and try to let my enthusiasm ignite theirs.

In all cases I want to make NPCs and adversaries that I’m excited to play, that I can advocate for, and that I like enough to track behind the scenes. This ensures that NPCs and adversaries don’t disappear as soon as the players look the other way. It ensures that the situations develops, even if the PCs ignore it.

I try to imagine little descriptive vignettes that help illustrate the theme and mood of the setting.

I try to imagine an obstacle or two that might have to be overcome just to navigate the setting as a way of expressing the setting.

Ultimately, my advice is to generate as much enthusiasm in the game as you can – for your players and yourself. If you think a curse is cool, follow your enthusiasm to flesh it out. If you wanna run a session about a wedding, get excited about the people involved. Feel free to brainstorm those ideas to find out the specifics with your players.

We owe it to our players to get invested in our worlds and our stories to bring them to life.


It’s implied that cultural traits should be character traits, but not made explicit. Something that might draw the players in mechanically is coming together to make a cultural die trait for the curse. That way, you’re working together to set the tone of the game and intensity of this setting element, and you’ll inherently bring focus on a common element between the characters. Nothing makes you want to repeal a curse like actually being harmed by it


So, when are you guys playing? :smirk: :smirk:

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