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D&D 3E
I'm looking for a side-quest adventure I can run next session.… 
24th-Aug-2006 09:57 pm
I'm looking for a side-quest adventure I can run next session. Something short and sweet, but hopefully fun to play. The PCs are 2nd level (there are currently 3 of them; the other two players are out of town--hence why I'm running side-quests instead of driving the main story).

Current situation: the characters are crew members of a pirate ship. They're currently heading south for reasons unknown to them (the captain is hoping to recover a minor artifact). They've stopped at a small island to resupply, and were attacked by another ship. They managed to drive it off, but sustained some damage (the mate, whom the PCs rather like, was also severely wounded). Without the side-quest, the boat would hang around for a few days, repair, and then sail off to other lands. I'm looking for something to happen either before they leave or on that voyage.

My original idea was to have the mate attempt a mutiny, but as he's in not too good shape I'm questioning that. Also, I don't think I want to even suggest getting rid of the current captain (for story reasons). Of course, there is another guy who could try a mutiny, and I could probably make him unlikable without too much trouble. But other than the possibility of an on-deck brawl, the whole idea doesn't seem that great. Maybe something else could be going on at the same time (perhaps a storm? I was planning on using the ship-attacks-during-a-storm thing later, but I could use it now if I need to).

Does anyone have any ideas of stuff to do? Much appreciated.
25th-Aug-2006 09:00 am (UTC)
Just a few questions: Is this a populated island or a deserted one? If they are at a populated island, would they restock/make repairs at a city?

Story suggestions:
Another idea is to have something or someone who is sabataging the repairs on the ship and the characters have to discover the perpetraitor. Maybe the island is haunted?

If the island is deserted, maybe the crew/characters discover survivors from a past shipwreck on the island. These survivors could be merchants/upper class that might pay them money (once they get back to the city) for a safe return to land... or you could just ransom them or whatever else the pirates of your ship would do. Then again, maybe these survivors are pirates themselves and would be willing to help out your mutinous crew member... or take over the ship themselves (depending on the size of the ship).

As for pre-made side quests that may already be out there, I don't know of any in particularly sorry.
25th-Aug-2006 01:29 pm (UTC)
It's a deserted island. I could have them go to the nearest town and maybe get involved in something there (which could be interesting, seeing as the ship that attacked them was from that town), but I'm not sure why they would. Unless I decide the mate takes a turn for the worse and they need to go get an actual doctor. Actually that could be fun... must think about it more.

I think the idea of someone sabotaging the repairs could work well as a kind of "red-herring" to the mutiny. Unfortunately, I just did the "unknown thing on the island" bit (the ship that attacked them had hired a monster to hang out on the island and attack anyone who landed), though it was pretty brief and not quite as Heroes of Horror as I would have liked.

They actually already have discovered survivors of a shipwreck ;p The same ship that attacked them sunk another small pirate vessel, and they've since picked up the survivors (the leader of the survivors was my second option for someone who would start a mutiny).

In any case, thanks for the suggestions :) It's always good to talk ideas out with someone.
27th-Aug-2006 12:14 pm (UTC)
*chuckles* I see why you're digging for ideas. Xp

Another question: Do the players and the pirates know where they currently are located (like they know that if they traveled by ship two days East they would hit town 'Chicamunga' or whatever) or are they lost?

*pumps brain for random things on not enough sleep - lol*
Other ideas:
1. If it's a deserted island, maybe:
-- an npc(s) are sent looking for food (especially if they didn't complete resupplying at the previous island before they were attacked).
-- an npc(s) are sent to scout out the local area on the island to make sure that there isn't any immediate danger to the ship/crew.

In the above two, one of the people sent out could get lost or maybe they stepped on a weak patch of ground that broke away and thus dropped them into a small pit/cavern that they couldn't get out of. Maybe the pit/cavern was two deep or maybe they injured their ankle, etc. When the NPC doesn't come back to the ship, the players are sent out as a search party.

-- someone sent looking for herbs.

If the doctor on board the ship is a traditional doctor and is not a magical or not 'completely' a magical one, maybe s/he needs to restock on some medicinal herbs that s/he is running out of. Or maybe s/he needs a particular herb or a fresh herb to treat the wounded mate. If the pc's find the herb, the Mate heals up faster. If the pc's don't find the herb, it will take longer for the Mate to heal back to full strength.

2. The island isn't really a real island at all, but the back of a huge turtle or something, but that doesn't really make for much of an adventure... unless someone pisses off the turtle that is. o.0;

Wish I could come up with more ideas, but I haven't played a swashbuckling/pirate game myself. One of my friends plays a table top game called '7th Sea' which is related to the genre so maybe you might find some plot ideas through that game system.
25th-Aug-2006 09:44 am (UTC)
Sahaguin are fun enemies. Could have been attracted by the fight and the damaged ship.
25th-Aug-2006 01:31 pm (UTC)
I mean to have the Sahaguin be a major NPC race in the world (filling the role of "evil aquatic civilization"). This could be a decent place to introduce that race (kind of a side-quest with larger implications for what's going on the world). I'll think about it, thanks :)
25th-Aug-2006 12:22 pm (UTC)
In the uninhabited island options, the PC's could see something glinting on top of a mountain on the island, and go onto the island to get it, hoping for treasure...

Could be really whatever you want it to be, but there will probably be an encounter or two on the way.
25th-Aug-2006 01:31 pm (UTC)
Nice and open-ended. Just what is needed to get the ideas flowing. Beautiful :)
25th-Aug-2006 01:14 pm (UTC) - Mostly cuz its fresh in my mind.
Pirate ships could always use more deckhands... if they are real pirates a little "active recruitment" could be a neat way to bring some new NPC onto the ship.
25th-Aug-2006 01:34 pm (UTC) - Re: Mostly cuz its fresh in my mind.
I've already got more NPCs than I know what to do with (about 15 NPC crew members, apart from the captain and the mate and some new guys the PCs have just picked up). I'm already worried about possible DMPC problems, so I think I'll try and restrict the crew.

Though it's not a bad idea for a future adventure. Thanks :)
26th-Aug-2006 06:16 am (UTC)
The deserted island turns out to be not so deserted as they are set upon by nasty cannibalistic natives who capture the characters (of the players that are out of town) and make off for their secret hide-out for a glorious feast... The remaining pcs track down the nasties, encountering all sorts of fun on the island from dire weasels to dinosaurs, and rescue their comrades... Don't forget to throw in a scene where the pcs get a hint of what fate awaits their friends... *insert maniacal laughter here*
26th-Aug-2006 12:51 pm (UTC)
That's definately one to remember ;)
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