Quest Creator

Drinking to Horror [The Forge #7]

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We received a few community requests for this one, so here it is...Many of Lovecraft's characters turned to the bottle to deal with the terrors they'd uncovered in the dark. Ultimately, it didn't help them much, but here is a simple mod to make Expedition a drinking game. If you're 21+ and capable of drinking responsibly, you may want to toast to the spirit of "The Horror" this month. Every time you see the word "horror" (while playing Expedition with friends), you have to drink.  Whenever your adventurer loses a Persona point, you drink.  

But that's not all we've got for this week's Forge...you have it in your hands...a dark compulsion to play tickles your psyche, hinting at thrills and terrors to come. Here are some suggestions for enhancing your Horror-themed quest. 

Adding Art

With the Kickstarter for "The Horror", we were able to allow addition of art to the Quest Creator. There are two ways you can do this...

Below is how you script for custom art you may have made yourself as a PNG file (note that at this point we will have to add it to the database first). There is a little bit more to this process--and I am not a graphic artist--but perhaps in the future our staff artist might be able to give pointers as to what colors work in the app. 

Art.PNG

In the Quest Creator,  you'll want to have the normal Card prompt _Gardener and Hound_ (#Caretaker), then the [raventree_manor_png_full] produces the following picture in app.  You won't want to include any text if you're using a picture like this, given the size of phone screens, so do add that _continue_ to kick it over to the next screen. 

Art2.PNG
Art3.PNG

There is something that might throw you, though, if you're using the Art Repository we've created. You won't put the _png_ for existing art.  The script at the bottom for the [hound_of_tindalos_full] accesses that existing art. Here is a link to the icons available, and another for the PNGs available.  And we see how "little Tindy" looks in app to the right. 

Most of our default icons are in black font, so if you are scripting something that is going to appear in the Combat Simulator of the app (which has a black background), you'll want to make sure you enable the white font.  Here is how you do that:

Instead of :roll: (which would give us a black font on black background), we script :roll_white: .

You can see the difference...

WhiteIcon.PNG

You can also get white text for ability and encounter icons ( :magic_white: , :beast_white: , etc.). 

Finally, you've seen the Persona mechanic...In the course of several hours of playtesting, allow us to offer the advice that when you play, if you want to make full use of the Persona boosts, be sure to play multiple adventurers that have Influence abilities.  If only one member of the party has one Influence ability, it may be difficult for you to bump the Persona up to ever get Max.  Authors, be sure when writing "Horror" themed quests to allow for skill checks or choices that can increase Persona, not just those that decrease it.   

Of course, players could institute a House rule that any critical success (roll of 20) automatically increases the Persona of the adventurer who rolled it by 1. 

We can't wait to see what you come up with and happy questing! 

Like this? Consider sharing or Tweeting it, or joining the weekly Quest Crafter mailing list for more writing inspiration.

Have an idea for the next Quest Crafter or feedback on how we can make it more useful to you? Email us at Authors@Fabricate.io or leave a comment below.

 

Quick Questing (GM Mode) [The Forge #6]

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Click Here for a Master Index of “The Forge” and “Vault”!

A recent community survey found that 17.4% of you would be interested in playing Expedition with a Game Master (GM) if you had more rules for doing so.  Only 3.4% of you said you'd never consider playing with a GM, so in this installment of The Forge, we're going to provide you with an idea to enable quick crafting of a quest by a GM, without the need to use the Quest Creator app.  

Many people find writing the introduction to a quest to be the most difficult part of the process.  You have the action and climax in mind, but how to start that “Journey of a thousand miles”? How do you take that difficult “single step”?

How do you explain how the adventurers have come together and why they’ve made common cause against the villainous antagonist?

This week we’re introducing a mechanic based on a classic childhood game: The Mad Lib!

Mad Lib Intros (MLIs) give you a quick and easy way to craft an adventure on the fly.

We’re hoping these MLIs help draw in your gamers, make the stories more interactive by involving them in the creation of the entire quest and thus give them more of a stake in the play.  Plus, as we all know, Mad Libs can be downright hilarious.  Welcome to the first MLIs.

MLI #1:  The Heist

Your party has been contacted by (Name #1), (Official/Title) of the (Community Type#1).  It appears the community’s supply of (Loot Card #1) and (Adjective) (Item) has been stolen by the nefarious forces of (Name #2), the (Adjective) a (Encounter Card Tier III or IV) of considerable (noun).  Desperate to recover the (Loot Card #1/Item) before word of this scandal gets out, the (Community Type#1) has contacted your band of (Adjective describing you) Adventurers.  They believe the minions of (Name#2) the (Adjective), a raiding party of (Tier I-III Encounter Card) and (Tier I-III Encounter Card) have fled back toward the (medieval building).  Can you intercept them before they arrive?  Dare you brave the treacherous (Color) (location) so as to arrive at (medieval building#1) before them and lie in ambush?

So let’s see how this MLI might play out in two different scenarios, one humorous, another more serious.

MLI #1: (Comedic Tone)

Your party has been contacted by Olaf the Scurvy, Captain of the ship the “Sea’s Bride”.  It appears the community’s supply of Rope and sacred pork rinds has been stolen by the nefarious forces of Jim the Leprous, a Giant Rat of considerable vulgarity.  Desperate to recover the rope and sacred pork rinds before word of this scandal gets out, the Sea’s Bride has contacted your band of smelly Adventurers.  They believe the minions of Jim the Leprous, a raiding party of Zombie Hands and Giant Spiders have fled back toward Castle Firewick.  Can you intercept them before they arrive?  Dare you brave the treacherous Chartreuse Forest so as to arrive at Castle Firewick before them and so lie in ambush?

MLI #1: (Dramatic Tone)

Your party has been contacted by Mayor Marbrand of the Town of Bildenstein.  It appears the community’s supply of Sparkstones and precious ore has been stolen by the nefarious forces of Azcalon the Black, a Lich of considerable bloodthirstiness.  Desperate to recover the Sparkstones and ore before word of this scandal gets out, the Town of Bildenstein has contacted your band of resolute Adventurers.  They believe the minions of Azcalon the Black, a raiding party of Zombies and Skeleton Swordsman, have fled back toward Castle Firewick.  Can you intercept them before they arrive?  Dare you brave the treacherous River of Sorrows so as to arrive at the abandoned Fort before them and so lie in ambush?

Interested in seeing more MLI as seeds for your quests? Let us know by commenting below...

Like this? Consider sharing or Tweeting it, or joining the weekly Quest Crafter mailing list for more writing inspiration.

Have an idea for the next Quest Crafter or feedback on how we can make it more useful to you? Email us at Authors@Fabricate.io or leave a comment below.

The Guided Quest (The Forge #3)

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Click Here for a Master Index of “The Forge” and “Vault”!

Intrepid Authors, audacious adventurers, this week we propose to you a method by which we hope you can craft a quest in about an hour of time! I clocked the example we're using below at 68 minutes, and you could certainly cut it down by omitting some skill checks or advanced combat scripts. 

You can find it in the Community Quests section of the App under the name "Bacchanalian Revels".

Made from the ideas and script already provided in the weekly "Vault" entries, we hope this method will provide even first-time authors with a way to fashion a custom adventure with ease.

For our first Guided Quest I'm going to pull from Vaults #8-12, which focus exclusively on the Fae, then I'll show you how to pull all this together in the Quest Creator.   So to begin I'll choose (or select by a random roll) a plot from Vault #10 (Inscrutable Intentions)

  • Plot #4: _Bacchanalian Revels_ Several charming and reckless Fae have swept into town, seducing the young with indiscriminate abandon. Much destruction and heartache will result if they are allowed to continue, but anyone dealing with them will also have to face their beguiled victims too."

Next let's choose a name and a Title to give to the Boss/main Antagonist from Vault #9 (The Fae Folk):

  • Title #5: _Lord of Illusions_ While they live, you'll not know what to believe. > Every other round, adventurers :roll:. Whoever rolled lowest finds their ability misses one intended target (they choose which, if multiple targets were designated).

Any proper Quest needs settings for the action, so let's select 3 from Vault #12 (Occulted Environs):

  • Location #4: _Faerie Circle_ This simple circle of stones or oddly colored grass in the middle of a forest clearing is a gateway to the realms of Fae. > Attempts to travel to or from the mortal and Fae lands gain a +3 while in the circle, but such travel can only be undertaken by one person at a time. Alternatively, with a proper offering, adventurers may summon a Fae to answer their questions on a :roll: of 10 or above. The Fae's answers may clear as mud, but that's another matter.

  • Location #5: _Copse of Candlelight_ The profusion of fireflies makes it difficult to strike a target or find one's way. > -2 to all :ranged: and :magic: abilities. -3 to any :roll: to search the area or find Loot.

  • Location #6: _Flickerwood_ So named for the pockets of flammable gas throughout. > Use of abilities with "fire" or "lightning" in the name ignite a pocket of flammable gas on rolls of 10 or less. All enemies and adventurers take 2 damage.

Finally, just to make things more interesting, let's select 3 "Alchemies of Alteration" from the only fae Vault we haven't used yet, Vault #11:

  • Alchemy #10: _Illusion of Control_ You get the impression you’re being toyed with. > Cancel all damage done to one Encounter Card this round.

  • Alchemy #11: _Word of Creation_ An item of worth springs into being from nowhere. > Choose Loot items equal in Tier value to the Fae's Tier value and put them into play under it's control. It can use them against adventurers or for its own benefit.

  • Alchemy #12: _Phantasmal Peer_ A simulacrum appears out of nowhere and strikes. > Draw a Fae Encounter card of equal Tier level to one already in play and place it into play for a single round, resetting the Tier count. After resolving damage (and surges, if applicable) for the round, discard the Phantasmal Peer.

Finally, we'll yank some Skill Checks from the latest Vault (#13).   We'll show you those in the Quest Creator.... 

In reality, while we've done this we've been copying and pasting the Vault entries into the Quest Creator. This will save us loads of time. We do, however, need to add some necessary spacing and pathways (**goto XYZ**) to each entry we've pasted. Let's see how that might look in the Creator:

So you can see the first thing we have to do is put the proper spacing between script that we've pasted from the Vaults. Since we're using the plot (Bacchanalian Revels) as the quest title, it's the only one that'll have the # and the added screen script (_Introduction_). Then we've inserted our skill check _Craft Item_ bumping the text players will see (in white) to the line below, then bumping the instructions (> On an appropriate etc.) to its own line, with a space between them.  Next comes our first selected location, _Faerie Circle_ , where we repeat the process of putting blank lines between screen/card names (_Faerie Circle_), narration text (white font), and game instructions (red font).  We have deleted some instructional text from _Faerie Circle_, since traveling to the Fae realms isn't part of this adventure, and added some story narration about summoning a Fae to question (final two white lines). Next, let's introduce our antagonist...

So you can see the first thing we have to do is put the proper spacing between script that we've pasted from the Vaults. Since we're using the plot (Bacchanalian Revels) as the quest title, it's the only one that'll have the # and the added screen script (_Introduction_). Then we've inserted our skill check _Craft Item_ bumping the text players will see (in white) to the line below, then bumping the instructions (> On an appropriate etc.) to its own line, with a space between them.

Next comes our first selected location, _Faerie Circle_ , where we repeat the process of putting blank lines between screen/card names (_Faerie Circle_), narration text (white font), and game instructions (red font).

We have deleted some instructional text from _Faerie Circle_, since traveling to the Fae realms isn't part of this adventure, and added some story narration about summoning a Fae to question (final two white lines). Next, let's introduce our antagonist...

On the screen above we add some connection narration for the story. Then we throw in a skill check, _Discern Intentions_ that has bearing on our first combat encounter. You'll notice I've scripted some advanced combat to randomize the enemies faced and keep them fresh:  - {{_.randomEnemyOfClassTier("Fae", 2)}}.  I've also added one of the "Alchemies of Alteration" (this one was called "Word of Creation"), that'll appear periodically throughout the combat. This script, which begins with:  * {{_.currentCombatRound() % 2 == 1}} on round  and ends with "benefit" will also buff our low Tier enemies, as well as turn over some additional loot to the adventurers when they win. The first screen (#Slaves) below is what will be seen for any battle lost during this quest. We've written it from scratch.

On the screen above we add some connection narration for the story. Then we throw in a skill check, _Discern Intentions_ that has bearing on our first combat encounter. You'll notice I've scripted some advanced combat to randomize the enemies faced and keep them fresh:

- {{_.randomEnemyOfClassTier("Fae", 2)}}.

I've also added one of the "Alchemies of Alteration" (this one was called "Word of Creation"), that'll appear periodically throughout the combat. This script, which begins with:

* {{_.currentCombatRound() % 2 == 1}} on round

and ends with "benefit" will also buff our low Tier enemies, as well as turn over some additional loot to the adventurers when they win. The first screen (#Slaves) below is what will be seen for any battle lost during this quest. We've written it from scratch.

The battle won, the Fae impersonating "Ariel" can be Deceived or Intimidated (two Skill checks seen above) to get us to our next locations (either the _Copse_ or _Flickerwood_).

The battle won, the Fae impersonating "Ariel" can be Deceived or Intimidated (two Skill checks seen above) to get us to our next locations (either the _Copse_ or _Flickerwood_).

If the adventurers failed their skill checks, they have to take a more circuitous route before finding their way to the site of the final confrontation with the Lord of Illusions. Enter the _Flickerwood_ . You'll notice we have to write some connecting story narration (it's not purely copied and pasted, though the special condition applies), and thrown in combat with teens besotted by the Lord. The advanced combat script for this battle is the _Illusion of Control_ from  "Alchemies of Alteration" (Vault #11)  .

If the adventurers failed their skill checks, they have to take a more circuitous route before finding their way to the site of the final confrontation with the Lord of Illusions. Enter the _Flickerwood_ . You'll notice we have to write some connecting story narration (it's not purely copied and pasted, though the special condition applies), and thrown in combat with teens besotted by the Lord. The advanced combat script for this battle is the _Illusion of Control_ from "Alchemies of Alteration" (Vault #11) .

After overcoming adversity in the Flickerwood or succeeding in their skill checks against the fake "Ariel", the adventurers arrive in the final location, the Copse of Candlelight. This location is simply copied and pasted in its entirety, then we throw in 2 skill checks, to which we've added but a few words to fit them into our story. Next we will see the Lord himself and get our final combat encounter:

After overcoming adversity in the Flickerwood or succeeding in their skill checks against the fake "Ariel", the adventurers arrive in the final location, the Copse of Candlelight. This location is simply copied and pasted in its entirety, then we throw in 2 skill checks, to which we've added but a few words to fit them into our story. Next we will see the Lord himself and get our final combat encounter:

I'm not going to include the alternate combat if the adventurers fail their notice check (and suffer extra damage for it), but here is the screen if they succeed in the notice check. You'll see we have a few instructional scripts, which appear in red and begin with ">" . One script is for the notice check (> +1 damage...), one from our pasted location (> Suffer -2...) and then the advanced combat attack of the Lord of Illusions (in which "A simulacrum of the Fae lord appears our of nowhere and strikes". ) If the adventurers prevail in the titanic struggle, the end is brief but happy:

I'm not going to include the alternate combat if the adventurers fail their notice check (and suffer extra damage for it), but here is the screen if they succeed in the notice check. You'll see we have a few instructional scripts, which appear in red and begin with ">" . One script is for the notice check (> +1 damage...), one from our pasted location (> Suffer -2...) and then the advanced combat attack of the Lord of Illusions (in which "A simulacrum of the Fae lord appears our of nowhere and strikes". ) If the adventurers prevail in the titanic struggle, the end is brief but happy:

So you'll see that our Quest was a total of 182 lines (many just spacing lines, many others copied and pasted) at a total word count of 1,118, again, most of those already written for us in the "Vault" series.  If you've taken the time to get here, we're confident you're about an hour or so from crafting your own short quest. Happy scripting!   Like this?  Consider  sharing  or  Tweeting  it, or  joining the weekly Quest Crafter mailing list  for more writing inspiration.  Have an idea for the next Quest Crafter or feedback on how we can make it more useful to you? Email us at Authors@Fabricate.io or leave a comment below.

So you'll see that our Quest was a total of 182 lines (many just spacing lines, many others copied and pasted) at a total word count of 1,118, again, most of those already written for us in the "Vault" series.

If you've taken the time to get here, we're confident you're about an hour or so from crafting your own short quest. Happy scripting!

Like this? Consider sharing or Tweeting it, or joining the weekly Quest Crafter mailing list for more writing inspiration.

Have an idea for the next Quest Crafter or feedback on how we can make it more useful to you? Email us at Authors@Fabricate.io or leave a comment below.