I’m putting together my first mission for a one-shot session. It’s still a little rough around the edges and was looking for some feedback. My plan is to reverse engineer the BIGs for this one, creating the mission first and the basing the BIGs on what would fit into it. I have a few ideas, but could use more.
(It may look familiar since I’m cribbing from Deliver the Mail and Danger on the Scent Border.)
Spring has just arrived and Gwendolyn tasks the party with delivering the mail to Gilpledge.
Along with the rest of the mail is one special letter from her that needs to be delivered by the guard personally. One of the older guardsmice became ill over the winter, and he requested the presence of his estranged brother before he passes. The party must ensure he get this message with utmost haste.
There was recently an early spring rain, and another may be close behind. The party needs to find it’s way through the muddy wilderness.
Twist on failure - the rain comes. They can build a shelter (Survivalist) or tough it out (Health)
The party finds a merchant unsuccessfully trying to pull his cart out of the mud. He tells the party that he and his two partners were on Appleloft when they were attacked in the rain by Weasels. His two partners were kidnapped and taken away, while he hid in a nearby abandoned hole. He plans on making his way on his own, and asks the party to escort him. The way is said to be frequented by bandits and he could use the protection.
The hole isn’t abandoned, though, and as the party is talking the snake that lives there returns.
Conflict vs Snake
Here is where I’m trying to build conflict in the party. One of the mice will have a Belief along the lines of “mission comes first” while another will have something like “our first duty is to protect mice from the wild.” The other two will be a little ambiguous so that the players can sort out how their mice react. My goal here is to make it impossible for the players to accomplish everything.
There are three major options I see for the players (I expect discussion will cost the party a check too, as they get into a Argument Conflict):
Deliver the message (1 check)
From where they are, they can make it easily to Gilpledge. Once they deliver the mail, it will take a Circles test to find the recipient of their message.
Escort the Merchant (2 checks)
The merchant is insistent about leaving as soon as he can (he refuses to be sidetracked to Gilpledge). He is willing to wait for the party to rescue his partners, but otherwise is leaving. Helping him is a Pathfinder check and Scout check (to avoid being ambushed by bandits). Failure will twist into a Conflict with bandits (fight, argument, or chase) I’m also thinking of making the bandit leader a PCs enemy.
Rescue the merchant’s partners (2+ checks)
The weasels attacked last night, so they can’t be far. It will take a Scout check to track them and another (Nature or Conflict most likely) to rescue them from the weasels. I’m thinking one of them could be one character’s Friend to spice things up. Once rescued, the two mice are too hurt to travel, and require a Healer test (a check each or one big one for both). Without success means one of them doesn’t make it and is killed by his injuries.
How does this look so far?