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D&D 3E
Ideas needed 
22nd-Sep-2004 09:00 am
fred
So, the group I've been running a FR campaign for is finishing up an adventure in the Amn/Tethyr border region (the Castle Spulzeer module, to be specific) and after this adventure we're going to stay in the same campaign, but switch DM's and play the City of the Spider Queen module, which starts in the Dalelands.

Here's my dilemma (as if you didn't see this one coming): How do I get them from Amn to the Dalelands? I'd prefer not to teleport them without a good reason, because I see that as a cop-out. What really angers me is that I had a great idea, but I've forgotten it. That always happens to me.
Comments 
22nd-Sep-2004 06:06 am (UTC)
Do you need to get them there quickly? Quickly in Real Time or Game Time? You could have them hired, if it's suitable for the party, to escort goods from A to B. Pretty straight forward that.

Someone could have a vision telling them to go to B. I'm using B because B doesn't have to be Dalelands. Dalelands could be en route to B.

Sorry, I don't know FR very well, its mass of high fantasy, magic and monsters is a little too much for me. That said, the very same high fantasy and magic oozing out of every barrel does make magical transport quite possible. You could simply have the party wake up and find themselves in the Daelends! After the City of the Spider Queen module you could run a scenario where they've more time to investigate the mystery. You'll need to have a pretty good reason though.
22nd-Sep-2004 06:11 am (UTC)
Knowing virtually nothing about FR, the easiest way to get players from one place to another is probably to send them on a mini-quest there. Have them need to deliver some item to someone in the area, have them be attacked on the way, or have the item stole and they have to get it back. Or, have them have to fetch the item from some dungeon in the middle, then bring it back to the Dalelands or whatever.

Escorting adventures also work. Or just have them hear of some event in the Dalelands (a tournament, a super-huge treasure hunt, or something), take them there really quickly ("you travel overland without any difficulty"), go through the event, and voila, you're there. You might even be able to set up stuff about the new adventure in your mini-quest.
22nd-Sep-2004 06:47 am (UTC)
Well, there's the 'milk run' strategy of accompanying a caravan or something to the Dalelands.

Or you could have them receive a letter requesting their help from an NPC, possibly another cleric if you have a cleric in the group, or any NPC really, requesting their expertise.

If you have a recurring villian that the players really want to kill or something like that, just drop some rumors that he has been 'spotted' recently in the Dalelands.
23rd-Sep-2004 07:46 am (UTC)
That's it! I think that was what my idea originally was. (I really should write these things down) The protagonist from the current adventure disappears, so I'm thinking if some clue is left behind indicating he was Daleland-bound, they'd want to pursue him. They're much more into vengeance than charity.

The milk-run stratgey I've done too many times already. I think they suspect that its a strategy to get them somewhere, and so they always try to do whatever they can NOT to go. Thanks for the suggestions.
22nd-Sep-2004 08:50 am (UTC)
Like some of the others, I'm not too familiar with Forgotten Realms, detail-wise. The most I've ever done is played Baldur's Gate II.

But anyway, I was thinking maybe family ties could bring them to the Dalelands, if it's possible. A friend of the family could run into them and say, "Oh, your father is sick" or something like that. Or maybe whatever starts off City of the Spider Queen has affected the relatives living there, and word gets to the party of this, via family friend or whatever.

The other ideas that I would suggest are escort, deliver a message, something like that for another employer to the people in the Dalelands. This could even be to someone who has a role in City of the Spider Queen, or have the message pertain to it or such.
22nd-Sep-2004 09:26 am (UTC)
I'm in the middle of running city of the spider queen right now, and you could easily have it start in amn. There really is nothing very specific to the area of the surface it starts on. it very quickly gets them into the underdark, so the starting city makes little differance.

Besides, a 10th level party should be bale to telport just abot anywhere they want to go.
22nd-Sep-2004 09:44 am (UTC)
I have to agree, I've run City of the Spider Queen (and it's a great adventure), but a couple of hours tweaking work, and you could run it from anywhere. There are certain aspects of it that are nice to use in the Dalelands, if you want to continue from there, but if you're not already based there, the effect of the fall of the Drow on the Drow presence in the Dales isn't terribly relevant.
22nd-Sep-2004 10:00 am (UTC)
I agree. If doesn't need to be the Dales, though it does help slightly.

If you really want it to be in the Dales, the milk-run works, but so would something along the lines of this;

During/after the current adventure, the party is in a bar having a drink to celebrate their accomplisments. Someone is bound to notice the drow at the far end of the bar trying desperately to get incredibly drunk AND avoid too much attention while doing so. Perhaps someone in the group decides to go walk over and start a conversation, and as it turns out, said Drow is trying to escape the upcomming war because he's afraid he wont make the cut and.. as we all know, not making the cut in Drow society produces less then desirable results. He spills enough beans for the party member to determine that there's a Drow offensive in the Dales and that it's worth investigating.

The next day, rumors take over the city of a Drow found horribly murdered in an alley close to where to the bar the party had seen him at. Now you have a plot hook.
23rd-Sep-2004 07:50 am (UTC)
The thing is, someone else will be running CotSQ, not me, and I don't think he's prepared to run it in Amn. He asked me to get the party to the Dalelands, so get them there I must. They're really vengeance-focused, so I think having the current protagonist escape there would be the best idea.
22nd-Sep-2004 02:58 pm (UTC)
Giant Catapult.

Actually we had a FR game once and the DM had us start playing Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil, for some reason requiring vehemently that it take place in Greyhawk, and so Portal away!
23rd-Sep-2004 07:52 am (UTC)
I always found portals/teleports to be a cop-out, but it actually might work in the context of the current adventure.
23rd-Sep-2004 09:20 am (UTC)
Hey, small difference between using a portal and travelling for weeks in game time with little to no encounters. Beats Setting-hopping though.
22nd-Sep-2004 09:04 pm (UTC)
i might be able to write something (or at least sketch out a decent looking outline) for you if you'd rather not cheese out of the travel time

I could use the practice anyway....

in the meantime i'll rack open my copy of the FRCS and see if i can pop up a quick idea or two
23rd-Sep-2004 07:48 am (UTC)
You'd better hurry: game's tonight.
23rd-Sep-2004 02:08 pm (UTC)
oh... well that wasn't mentioned.....let's see if i can at least give you a couple ideas....

since you mentioned startin from Amn, how about a hunting mission....since magic is taboo in Athkatla(sp?)the party is framed not only for illegal magic use (or abuse if they managed to get a permit) but, say, the murder of a high profile figure (merchant prince or nobility perhaps?)

so not only do they have to find out who set them up but they now HAVE to leave the area, at least till they can get the proof to clear their names ...the trail just happens to take them to the Dalelands, and possibly can lead into City of the Spider Queen (clues point to your quarry heading into the Underdark)
28th-Sep-2004 08:33 am (UTC)
Hey, that's not a bad idea. As it turns out, as I was backing out of my driveway, the host called and cancelled, then everyone's either going on vacation or out of town on business, so it's gonna be a couple weeks before we play again.
28th-Sep-2004 01:46 pm (UTC)
well, luck is with you........imight be able to offer a few more ideas if you need them
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