Creating One Shot Adventures:

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A discussion at work today about some DMs lacking focus to follow through on an entire campaign *before burning out/becoming bored/etc* led to what things would make up a good One Shot Adventure. One Shots can be used if the whole group can't make it, in between campaigns, or my personal favourite; "so how would this rule work?" situations. With the upcoming release of the character builder *full version eventually* I see One Shot adventures gaining in popularity (as generating a viable PC will become less time consuming).

One of the ideas that we came up with this evening goes something like this:

Terrain: Jungle with rugged mountains and a beach area *you'll see*.

Setting: Any

Number of PCs: 1-5 (great for teams but not bad for single players either...see also: Robert E. Howard, Conan).

Motivation: After surviving a shipwreck *told ya* you are being chased deeper into the jungle by members of a local tribe. These individuals have decided that you are not fit to live for whatever reason (maybe they just fear what you represent (i.e. the outside world)). If you stop and try to make a stand, you will face wave after wave of attacks until you are killed.

Obstacles: Regular Endurance/Athletics checks to keep ahead of your pursuers. Stealth checks wouldn't hurt either if you try to double back to the beach. Terrain is unfogiving and for every 2 failures (Endurance/Athletics) you lose a healing surge, reaching 0 surges means you drop and are unable to continue and must be carried.

Escape: You are chased until you enter the "cursed" area. This area doesn't look cursed but the tribe members know where the boundries are due to totems and other signs. Feeling like you've bested them you press on until you find a structure *insert ominous music*. The structure sits on the edge of a gorge, the only way across the gorge is to get through the structure *Black Temple of Skulls IMC*.

Populate the temple as you see fit but keep in mind that the idea is to challenge lightly armed and armored characters so you don't have to go nuts to do so.

Any other ideas out there?
Genre: political intrigue

Terrain: Castletown

Number of PCs: 2+

Hook: Signs are pasted all over claiming the prince/princess is missing and showing a portrait uncannily resembling one PC. Upon investigating (or being reported and a troop of guards bring you in) at the palace, despite any objection that PC is whisked from dresser, bath, dresser, to main hall to celebrate the return of the wayward son/daughter.

Development: All attempts to leave the court or call for help will be nipped in the bud by guards or royals saying, "That is not becoming of royalty" or "I cannot allow that for your safety."

Meanwhile, the other PCs come upon a plan to assassinate the royal family, but are not allowed back into the palace and dismissed as troublemakers by the guards. There is an old waterway (of course)... populate as desired. Placing grates at intervals.

The party should be able to communicate with the new "royal" through grates in the castle, but not too long per grate or others will notice and a few guards will be released into the waterway to find the party (party's LV+1 encounter).

What the "royal" has to do is trick someone into giving them the key that lets the others into the palace.

Endgame: the assassins get in through the same passage right after the party is reunited. The lead assassin is the missing royal her/himself, double-crossing the revolutionaries to get her/his hands on the family scepter!

The final trick is when the real royal lies that the PCs have planted an impostor to aid in the assassination and, despite being stowed away in rags, the real royal has come back. The family doctor (who was away before) can assure which one's real. You should stall before he comes and escape.
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