GROUP RP PLOTTING The Curse of the Curse of the Wounded King

Discussion in 'THREAD ARCHIVES' started by Asmodeus, Oct 22, 2012.

  1. So, this is my aptly named Epic Fantasy Quest which has had four incarnations of varying success. I like to think I'm pretty proficient at crafting a good roleplay and getting people to work together, but this particular story seems to elude my skills at every turn.

    The basic premise is that there are Five Weapons of tremendous power buried across the world, and a band of heroes must journey to find them. It's your standard world-spanning adventure, crossing realms of ice and sand, forest and mountain, braving all kinds of dangers and meeting all kinds of races and kingdoms.

    Usually, my lead character knows the location of the first weapon and recruits a band of people to help him find it. But so far those characters have either had ZERO motivation for following him, or have had such a selfish agenda of their own that they tear the party in half. I've been unable to find a good balance.

    My end-goal is to have a story in which different heroes with different motivations wield powerful game-changing weapons. I've done it before in my tabletop games, but building these character arcs in a forum setting is proving very difficult.

    So, I need ideas on how to generate proper motivation and cement character relationships in an Epic Fantasy Quest. If any of you have advice, I'd love to hear it.

    The Concept (open)
    The Wounded King


    Forty years have passed since Ranthos conquered the known lands. He was the last king of men, wise beyond his years, ambitious beyond his limits. With an army unnumbered he marched across Deluvian, and forged the greatest empire ever known.

    Legend speaks of the sacred items he carried on his crusade - artefacts which turned the course of battles and the fortunes of kingdoms. They were called the Wounds, five in all, and it is said King Ranthos earned them upon his journey through valiant trials, cunning tricks and divine pacts. With the Five Wounds no living creature could stand in his way.

    And it is said that he reached the end of the world, walking on as his army fell to exhaustion, and that he alone made it where none have ventured - to the shores of the Hollow Sea.

    And what befell him there was madness, absolute and irretrievable. Some say that bearing the Five Wounds was too great for any mortal, or that the spirits he confided in tore his mind apart. Still others say it was the Hollow Sea itself which sucked out his very soul.


    With his sanity in tatters, King Ranthos ran wild through his own kingdom, eluding his generals and governors. What steered his course it will never be known, but in every land he had conquered, from heartland to desert, from mountain to forest, he was sighted - a hermit in rags, a fool on horseback, a vagrant in the streets. As madness consumed him he cast away each of his artefacts, dropping the Five Wounds, passing them away, burying them.

    And then, before a thousand witnesses, Ranthos was seen in the streets of Argeria, naked and screaming at the skies, before he crumpled into dust.

    The Wounded King was no more.

    His bloodline died with him, in the space of forty days. His wife, his heirs, his cousins and kin - each met with separate tragedies. Deluvian was sorrowed and the Age of the Crown came to an end.


    Now, forty years have passed and the lands are carved between the generals, vassals and opportunists who once served the king. It is as if the Empire never was.

    But some still remember... some still recall the Legend of the Wounded King... and the Five Weapons that brought the world to its knees. Some still work, in the ceaseless dark, to follow the tracks of Mad Ranthos and study the sagas of his deeds. Some still believe. Some still hope.


    <table align=center><tr><td>[​IMG]<td>
    The Mask of Velgovis

    Said to enhance the powers of deception, stealth and trickery. It has blades around the eye-slits that pierce the skin when placed on the face. Once placed, it takes a form that reflects the wearer's soul. When wearing the mask you are blind and deaf to what is behind you. With continued use its removal will risk tearing the skin from your face.
    The Vambrace of Larn

    A wrist sheath said to glow with elemental runes. It pierces the wrist once secured, fusing with the veins. When taught the proper gestures of the fingers, a wielder can channel one of the four elements into whatever shape the hand desires. The faster the casting, the more exhausting the effects. With continued use its removal will risk heavy blood loss.
    The Sword of Haladayne

    Reputed as the holiest of all swords, forged in celestial light. This is the sword of the rightful king, divinely sharp and unbreakable. All darkness is put to flight, all evil is vanquished, all men are subjugated in its sight. The hilt is thorned, meaning severe pain to grip it. The pain will increase tenfold if ever the sword is wielded against the innocent or undeserving. With continued use its removal will risk infection of the blood.
    The Hand of Iaisen

    A velvet glove that gives the initial sensation of burning to any who wear it. The glove is said to be enchanted, and any who are touched by it will fall under the charms of the wearer. This will range from subservience to obsessive love. The glove, however, makes the body frail, prone to disease, cold and exhaustion. With continued use its removal will risk corrosion of the hand.
    The Cloak of Tunridge

    Said to offer total protection against all weapons, weather and elements. The cloak is fastened by a brooch that pierces the throat, so the wearer cannot utter a single sound from his lungs. If one can pull the robe open then the wearer can be slain, so protection depends on the wearer keeping the robe shut tight. With continued use its removal will risk permanent respiratory damage. </table>
  2. Well, I would like to leave Prianne the way she is, considering we worked together to create a background between Tristan and herself. Purhaps we should have a deditcated "character slots" list? Like, certain character types that are needed to further the plot...
  3. You mean archetypes?

    Hero, Mentor, Funny Guy, Traitor, Mystic, etc.?
  4. yes! :) I'd love to have a back and forth with you to go over it. Can I pm you?
  5. >_>

    Why not here?
  6. I'll stay in if you want me... just don't invite the clusterfuck again otherwise my attention to jump right back out the window. If i stay in i'm going to refine Kendrick's personality and history a bit more to meet the anti-hero archetype.
  7. *puts away the bludgeon* Umm.. no reason. yeah. Let's talk about it here. I think it would be easier to start with a smaller number of people- then work up to a larger group of dependable Rpers.
  8. Thanks Davion - it's good to know that you're breathing down my neck with your attention-span on a hair-trigger.

    Anyway, I've just remembered that in the first incarnation (which was the most successful), I had the actual demons who gave the king the weapon AS characters. They were hunting the players from the outset, Ring-Wraith style, and this is how the party first came together, under this mutual threat.

    Perhaps more immediate peril will help to unite the characters?
  9. My character is already the anti-hero. The loveable, drunk, rude anti-hero. Don’t you be steppin on my anti-hero swagger.

    In all seriousness though, I maintain that we need a reason to stay in this. Everyone in the old party was linked by undead super liches gunning for their lives and the fate of the world hanging in the balance. Right now we have some guy funding an expedition for items that may exist.

    I think that this roleplay could use another restart. Things are a bit…wonky right now. Malvolen was a party leader by virtue of his magic and curmudgeony attitude. Tristan is young and emotional. One of us would need to step into the role and as things stand, the logical battle would be between Kendrick and Brill…characters that SHOULD be set as opposites of each other. One, the disgraced, drunk, and bitter prince and Kendrick as the hunted, revenge-bound, slightly more honorable type…or at least that’s how I read him.

    What we need are threads. Threads between characters that help fill out the party. I don’t think we need to get as detailed as ‘the funny guy, the mentor, the herald, etc’ but I do think that those characters who join the party need a defined reason to BE here. Doesn’t matter how it began, or what initially attracted your attention, but when you stare in the face of the undead…something none of us have seen before, you need to know where your loyalties lie. Most would just call this expedition cursed and leave, but we need in character reasons why the rest of us should stay. So far, we have very little, precious little motivations to be anything but a loose group of people looking to get the one up on each other. I suggest we look for more defined reasons to stay in a party of unlike minds or link more characters together in like minds as to avoid the fact that part of the party is clueless and aloof, the other part wants to murder each other for power, and the last sorta wants to find the weapons or something.

    We need cohesion without surrendering individuality. Consider any other group in epic fantasy. Gimli and Legolas practically hated each other from the beginning. Boromir nearly fell victim to the ring’s powers. Frodo and Sam were pretty misplaced and Gandalf was the glue that held them together. They all had reasons to be there, to not fail, to fight and carry on…and in doing so they formed bonds of friendship and camaraderie.

    That’s what we need.
  10. Asmo: Hey man, this will be the THIRD time for this rp... just warning you. I meant it, if you'd rather move it another direction, i'll drop it if you'd prefer, otherwise i'll post until it's doomed to fail thrice.

    Jack: True, good thing. I actually meant more of a fallen mentor type thing. Gonna change him a lot so he is older, more established.
  11. We could get some serious good jive off our characters. I still think you should come from my nation so your enemy is my redemption factor. Too delicious.
  12. T^T well then, what other special(ness) does Prianne have other than being Tristans love interest/ assasin seductress?
  13. MWUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!!!!! *cough cough cough* D'evil has taken interest in this and is wondering something. Asmo? *slides close to asmo* will you allow me to join? *cute cat like eye stare* I would like to play a crazy maniacle, yet dependable (loyal and faithful to the main character) female. Partially insane.
  14. No.

    That's not what I want at all.

    The last one failed because we had a crazy sadistic women whose fidelity rested upon tenuous mental retardation.
  15. Also I'm giving Kendrick a death wish. :D
  16. No. No. Let me answer for you. I won't play with ANOTHER insane character. Insanity is the most cliche and boring convention a character can take. It's an excuse to act aberrant to the rules of society without a real reason why. We don't need crazy and frankly, you'd get yourself ganked by the party for your trouble.

    I won't play with another "I'm a killer because I'm a sadistic maniac, what's character development?"

    Esthalia. We can talk about a second purpose linking you to my character if you want.

    Edit; sorry for repeating Asmo's message, I'm in a touchpad and a bit slow on the draw.
  17. Maybe your not understanding me. I'm not saying she's sadistic (I like that thought though) or un-loyal. I'm saying she's crazy and serves the main person. Sort of like igor. But pretty, and insane, and possibly sadistic. She's there of her accord and her main purpose is to help the main characters achieve their goals. That better?
  18. I don't think you understand.

    I will not play with another generic head case, helpful or not. Build a character who has deeper reasons to be there, who can develop as situations change. Insanity is a deterrent on character change. They're 'stuck' in a psychosis preventing them, for the most part, from meaningful emotional development. How do we relate to your character if you're the babbling equivalent of a sentient battering ram?

    Insanity is just an excuse to be hardcore without morality or maturity. Challenge yourself. Challenge us. We'll all have more fun.

  19. sounds good. :D Maybe we should work this stuff out now? While we are all online?
  20. I'm at work on a touch pad. I'm slooooooooow