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Investigative Scenario Idea


Lloyd Dupont

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For my upcoming scifi campaign, even though I would be in what a friend called "Dark Age SciFi style" of campaign, I plan to start very low combat... Mostly investigation I guess...

I am not that good with that style of game though...

Any tip / link / document (/adventure) that could help start on that path would be welcome! :)

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6 hours ago, Lloyd Dupont said:

For my upcoming scifi campaign, even though I would be in what a friend called "Dark Age SciFi style" of campaign, I plan to start very low combat... Mostly investigation I guess...

 

For inspiration might I recommend:

This has come up in another thread, and would definitely be worth a watch for ideas here. The Expanse; which I categorize as Sci-Fi Noir. Combat does occur but is brutish, and fast. Otherwise things are akin to a sam spade mystery with our cop falling from clue to another, each revealing more questions than answers.

Another series with a noirish investigative style (a bit more combat a bit more stylish) is a Japanese cartoon called Cowboy Bebop which swings at more of a 50’s jazz style than the 40ish blues stylings of The Expanse.

Hope these help. Oh music, jazz or blues would not be out of place though atmospheric punk might set the scene as well.

Cheers

Edited by Bill the barbarian
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... remember, with a TARDIS, one is never late for breakfast!

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Have you seen Ashen Stars? It’s based on the Gumshoe system and was created for investigative play. I haven’t read it in a while but I think a few scenarios have been published as well. 

You could also try the Elevation campaign I released for M-SPACE in July. The free intro scenario is a short murder mystery and the follow-up scenarios include quite a bit of investigation. 

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1683589267_frostbyteloggaFsvarttiny2.jpg.22ebd7480630737e74be9c2c9ed8039f.jpg   FrostByte Books

M–SPACE   d100 Roleplaying in the Far Future

Odd Soot  Science Fiction Mystery in the 1920s

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Something I learned running games at 'Con events (where time is at a premium, and you don't have a commitment to pick things up the following week/month/whatever) ... 

In a mystery, have a few Red Herrings in your back pocket that you can throw out to slow the pace; occasionally, the players will luck into the Right Answer and slice anticlimactically through most of an adventure in half an hour; also have a pocketful of clues, ranging from subtle to blatant; usually, the players will need some extra help.

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A mystery role playing scenario is very much (but not identical to) a mystery story.  So I have always been able to profitably draw from tips in writing mystery stories and varying them to account for the fact that a role playing scenario is indeed not identical to a mystery story.  Here are three sets of rules to look at, by S.S. VanDyne and Raymond Chandler that have helped me:

http://www.thrillingdetective.com/trivia/triv288.html

http://www.en.utexas.edu/amlit/amlitprivate/scans/chandlerart.html

http://www.openculture.com/2014/02/raymond-chandlers-ten-commandments-for-writing-a-detective-novel.html

The difference between the two forms that is key for the scenario writer to my way of thinking is that in the scenario, the player characters and the detective are the same thing.  In the mystery story, the reader is a very different figure from the detective character and so any rule found that refers to the reader needs to be reconsidered accordingly.

 

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