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Need some help from some good storytellers.

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  • Need some help from some good storytellers.

    I am in the brainstorming phase of planning a chronicle and I would really like some help fleshing it out. I wasn’t happy with the last chronicle I attempted, because my group prefers a detailed, well thought out scenario that they can sandbox in, carefully working toward a conclusion. In other words, they like me to have my facts straight before the game starts, not to make it up as I go, which is really the kind game I enjoy playing as well.
    What I did before just didn’t have much thought put into it, and I want some complexity this time. Our groups regular Storyteller is so good it's intimidating, I seriously want to make him proud. Here’s what I have so far.
    1. I want the chronicle to be about 8 - 10 gaming sessions long. Typically my group plays for about 5 or 6 hours in a typical gaming night.
    2. I want to the players to be mortal characters, using the core CofD second edition rules.
    3. I want to have more than just one thing going on. Like a main antagonist, and secondary antagonist that has goals that might oppose the main antagonist, possibly an occasional ally to the players that might be just as dangerous to them in the end.
    4. I would like some sort of twist, and would like the story to carry a gloomy, dreadful, heavy feeling. To do this, I need the twist to come from a place of tragedy. I like elements of bitterness, and dark shameful secrets.
    My setting so far is a post mining town. Even though the mines haven’t been mined for decades, there is a network of tunnels that run all over beneath the town. At the beginning of the chronicle some of the townspeople, and player characters will notice a black, oily substance leaking up from the ground, possibly getting into the plumbing.
    The black substance will affect those exposed to it in a supernatural way, making them act out on their vices in unusual ways, and should slowly get worse as the game goes on. At some point late in the game it should become difficult to leave the town.
    I’m not yet sure what the black substance should be, or why it's there. I would also like something seemingly unrelated going on in the town, like a supernatural, or cannibalistic serial killer. I’m not sure how to tie these elements together. I would humbly appreciate any advice you could give.


    Offense is rarely given, but often taken.

  • #2
    My thoughts:
    ​The mine didn't close because it was played out, it closed because groundwater, possible seepage from a local lake, flooded the lower levels causing a partial collapse and the death of several workers whose bodies were never recovered. The mine was determined to be unsafe and unrecoverable.
    ​I don't know what kind of mine it was but whatever it was there is still something down there worth going after (if it was a coal mine then maybe it always produced a good deal of copper on the side) and now a new technique offers the chance to make it viable again, a possibility the company and town council really want to pursue.
    ​In opposition there is an environmental group arguing against the attempt, there numbers range from potential eco terrorists who see all mining as raping the Earth to those who are merely skeptical of this new technique and fear the powers that be are trying to rush things in the name of profit.
    ​On top of that are several families of those killed who don't want the remains of their loved ones disturbed.
    Perhaps there is a secret down in those mines that someone really doesn't want coming to light; the company broke regs or was reckless causing the accident, it was caused by sabotage that wasn't meant to result in deaths and I'm not going to prison for murders I didn't intend, maybe the mine tunnels actually broke into pre existing caverns that comprised an ancient burial ground, whatever it was someone will do whatever it takes to keep it buried.
    ​It's not hard to leave town because a bridge has washed out or something similar, but because everyone refuses to abandon the fight and with the rise in Vice that fight is building up towards an orgy of violence.
    For unrelated elements:
    ​Outside of town there is an insular town, more of a compound, housing a militia style group of doomsday survivalists who value their privacy. On top of that they have been secretly mining the outlying edges of the old tunnels and their activities are being threatened by the new interest in the mines. Perhaps they are the first affected by the 'black substance'.
    ​Representatives of the Federal Government have arrived and all sides are courting them, while also fearing and resenting their interference.

    ​Did I mention the cryptid in the woods, the one who hates trespassers?

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by 2ptTakrill View Post
      My thoughts:
      ​The mine didn't close because it was played out, it closed because groundwater, possible seepage from a local lake, flooded the lower levels causing a partial collapse and the death of several workers whose bodies were never recovered. The mine was determined to be unsafe and unrecoverable.
      ​I don't know what kind of mine it was but whatever it was there is still something down there worth going after (if it was a coal mine then maybe it always produced a good deal of copper on the side) and now a new technique offers the chance to make it viable again, a possibility the company and town council really want to pursue.
      ​In opposition there is an environmental group arguing against the attempt, there numbers range from potential eco terrorists who see all mining as raping the Earth to those who are merely skeptical of this new technique and fear the powers that be are trying to rush things in the name of profit.
      ​On top of that are several families of those killed who don't want the remains of their loved ones disturbed.
      Perhaps there is a secret down in those mines that someone really doesn't want coming to light; the company broke regs or was reckless causing the accident, it was caused by sabotage that wasn't meant to result in deaths and I'm not going to prison for murders I didn't intend, maybe the mine tunnels actually broke into pre existing caverns that comprised an ancient burial ground, whatever it was someone will do whatever it takes to keep it buried.
      ​It's not hard to leave town because a bridge has washed out or something similar, but because everyone refuses to abandon the fight and with the rise in Vice that fight is building up towards an orgy of violence.
      For unrelated elements:
      ​Outside of town there is an insular town, more of a compound, housing a militia style group of doomsday survivalists who value their privacy. On top of that they have been secretly mining the outlying edges of the old tunnels and their activities are being threatened by the new interest in the mines. Perhaps they are the first affected by the 'black substance'.
      ​Representatives of the Federal Government have arrived and all sides are courting them, while also fearing and resenting their interference.

      ​Did I mention the cryptid in the woods, the one who hates trespassers?
      Your really good at this.


      Offense is rarely given, but often taken.

      Comment


      • #4
        Deep within the mines lies a monster bounded in an ancient chamber, maybe it’s a Fae Lord or an immortal sorcerer trapped millennia ago for their transgressions or maybe it’s a mythical beast that nests there since an immemorial time. Either way, the mining crew drilled a small hole in its chamber, not big enough to free o wake it, but deep enough to pierce the monster and spill its black corrupted blood. After the mine was closed (for reasons that could be connected to the monster) the monster kept bleeding into an underground reservoir of water, contaminating it and creating the black substance.
        There are two groups that have come to town attracted by the unusual activities happening here:
        • A group of FBI agents have been in the town for several days now, claiming to be investigating a serial killer, if asked by any authority, and dismissing anyone else. While it’s true that there’s an investigation going on, they actually work for the Federal Agency for Paranormal Research and Containment. The Division 6 (also known as “Daedalus”) is doing an assessment of the level of danger of the black substance (cataloged as Compound 173-B) and the possibility of extracting it for further research. The group is composed mostly of scientific and technical staff with some armed agents for protection, and they will try to keep the civilians away from the substance and it’s source (if they find it) as much as they can, but if they discover the truth behind its origin, they could call a quarantine on the town and bring more firepower to deal with the situation. While the initial approach to a bunch of meddling civilians will be non-aggressive, they won’t hesitate to harsher methods to silence someone with compromised information. After all, dead men tell no tales (unless you call Division 3, but no one wants to work with those freaks)
        • The Watching Owl Society is a kind of an exaggerated name for a group of nerds that look into paranormal stuff for fun. However, behind this inoffensive appearance hides a doomsday cult, looking for a dark patron to obtain the power they need to bring the end of this wretched world. Thanks to ancient folktales and forgotten moldy tomes, they have a (wrong) idea of what’s inside the mine, and they will try to exploit it to their purposes. While not looking very impressive, some members are stronger than they look and they have some dangerous tricks under their sleeves, which could have consequences even their members don’t suspect.
        All this influx of people into the town is a source of concern for some people in the town:
        • Old Margaret doesn’t like these groups of people asking questions and snooping around town. She already is busy enough; she has to buy the groceries for this month, clean up the attic and find this year’s human sacrifice that will reinvigorate the spell that has kept her alive for the last 150 years.
        • Fred, on the other hand, is not bothered by the newcomers because it could mean new customers for his workshop, which hasn’t had in a long time. After all he has to start searching for a new host; this body is rotting faster than the previous ones…
        Well that’s all I could squeeze out of my brain for now. I hope it helps you in your chronicle.
        Last edited by Sir Phobos; 02-15-2017, 11:05 AM.

        Comment


        • #5
          Perhaps the black substance is a corrupted ectoplasm created by the ghosts of those who died in the mine collapse years ago? It's leaking and bubbling up because the ghosts themselves are angry that the mine is being opened again (as if their deaths are in vain.)

          Alternatively, if you REALLY want to make things weird, the ghosts are angry that the protesters are protesting the mine reopening! They have stirred restlessly because the mine closing made their deaths in vain! They want the mine to open up again and for the town to get back to the way it was when they were alive. They are ghosts, after all, and status quo is the name of the game for the restless dead. Everyone expects an eco-friendly moral to the story and it turns out the ghosts really just want their jobs back.

          Just my two cents. Ghosts are fun in CofD.

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