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If the promise of easy money from an up and coming Hutt crime lord makes a group of adventurers suspicious, that might be because when something seems to good to be true, it usually is...

Set in the darkest corners of the outer rim, Full of Surprises is an adventure for the Edge of the Empire Roleplaying Game told over 3 Episodes that sees the players pulled into escalating tensions between rival criminal empires, forcing them to jump from shadowport to backwater world to seedy underbelly as they try to piece together what is the truth and what are lies an in effort to stay alive long enough to clear their names.

Full of Surprises will be available for download in Q2 2018.

 

[inspiration taken from and thanks given to Quelthan and this post in particular]

Edited by DangerShine Designs

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2 minutes ago, SEApocalypse said:

Here comes another choo choo full of surprises  … ;-)

Because "gently asking" has such a great tradition in high adventure?

I really don't think a certain amount of guidance is bad in an adventure module. I mean, what's the alternative? "Maybe your players don't want to go to Coruscant. In that case, just skip the next twenty-three pages of location, faction and encounter descriptions and see whether there's some way you can cobble together a connection to the rest of the adventure. Good luck."

Railroading and sandboxing are essentially a scale. Go too far on the railroading side and you have a novel, too much sandbox and you have a setting description rather than an adventure. Constricting the adventure around the location transitions only is pretty much the minimum authors can get away with.

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Engage the players with something that appeals to their motivations instead of doing over and over and over and over again the same 3 episodes, three different planets, each with basically one large location and some sub-locations within the larger area. The standard formula for adventures in this system is rotten. 

Every time the same thing and every time the adventure is written in away that railroading is needed, because it would be rather inconvenient when the characters first step in each act is directly to solve the plot and move on or completely ignore the unappealing invitation to get forced into another unpleasant situations. 

And don't get me wrong, guidance is good, but building a whole 3 episode adventure, each normally build themselves in 3 acts, each time in the same fashion, it becomes quickly as bland and predictable as marvel movie. It still gets saved by the setting and character interaction somewhat, but the basic formula of showing the players 3 different settings, if needed forcefully and make them tag along on a predestined rollercoaster seems rather … unappealing for pen&paper game. Works great for computer games and movies though, media with a little less player interaction. ;-) 

And btw, the best motivation for players has always been gently refusing. Players have the tendency to get curious about things they are not supposed to do. Like not using their own ship, not to disassemble those droids before you deliver them, not to just kill the big bad when given a perfect opportunity during the first meeting which should establish the character on an eye to eye level with the players, etc, etc ;-)

Besides that: I agree with you Cifer. The issue is the structure of adventures which collapse onto their own weight based on 100% required actions of the group. If your adventure has several plot points which allow only once player character choice or else the adventure ends at that moment … than you have build yourself a railroad. 

 

Anyway, I am sure that the locations and ideas will be wonderful. FFG has giving us plenty of good examples how to do this properly, but it seems just as much like a railroad like a standard FFG adventure. But hey, maybe I am wrong, I always hope that I am wrong. :)

 

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1 hour ago, SEApocalypse said:

Here comes another choo choo full of surprises  … ;-)
f1ad645e33161157e4c0256e654af25a4c73b4a4

 

53 minutes ago, Cifer said:

Because "gently asking" has such a great tradition in high adventure?

I really don't think a certain amount of guidance is bad in an adventure module. I mean, what's the alternative? "Maybe your players don't want to go to Coruscant. In that case, just skip the next twenty-three pages of location, faction and encounter descriptions and see whether there's some way you can cobble together a connection to the rest of the adventure. Good luck."

Railroading and sandboxing are essentially a scale. Go too far on the railroading side and you have a novel, too much sandbox and you have a setting description rather than an adventure. Constricting the adventure around the location transitions only is pretty much the minimum authors can get away with.

 

35 minutes ago, SEApocalypse said:

Engage the players with something that appeals to their motivations instead of doing over and over and over and over again the same 3 episodes, three different planets, each with basically one large location and some sub-locations within the larger area. The standard formula for adventures in this system is rotten. 

Every time the same thing and every time the adventure is written in away that railroading is needed, because it would be rather inconvenient when the characters first step in each act is directly to solve the plot and move on or completely ignore the unappealing invitation to get forced into another unpleasant situations. 

And don't get me wrong, guidance is good, but building a whole 3 episode adventure, each normally build themselves in 3 acts, each time in the same fashion, it becomes quickly as bland and predictable as marvel movie. It still gets saved by the setting and character interaction somewhat, but the basic formula of showing the players 3 different settings, if needed forcefully and make them tag along on a predestined rollercoaster seems rather … unappealing for pen&paper game. Works great for computer games and movies though, media with a little less player interaction. ;-) 

And btw, the best motivation for players has always been gently refusing. Players have the tendency to get curious about things they are not supposed to do. Like not using their own ship, not to disassemble those droids before you deliver them, not to just kill the big bad when given a perfect opportunity during the first meeting which should establish the character on an eye to eye level with the players, etc, etc ;-)

Besides that: I agree with you Cifer. The issue is the structure of adventures which collapse onto their own weight based on 100% required actions of the group. If your adventure has several plot points which allow only once player character choice or else the adventure ends at that moment … than you have build yourself a railroad. 

Anyway, I am sure that the locations and ideas will be wonderful. FFG has giving us plenty of good examples how to do this properly, but it seems just as much like a railroad like a standard FFG adventure. But hey, maybe I am wrong, I always hope that I am wrong. :)

I really, really appreciate the feedback here and can't really disagree with much of what you say, but a couple of thoughts -

  • Whilst it will be up to the players to make the determination as to whether or not the adventure can best be described as "linear" or "railroading", there is a plot behind the adventure that, for it to work, needs to play out.
  • However, to YOUR point, it doesn't need to play out in a way that you end up telling the PC's "no, you HAVE to go here now" and I hope that I have minimized that, and will readdress after playtesting
  • Many of the acts within the episodes either have multiple outcomes or routes to success available, so whilst I can't avoid saying "this ship has these contents that you need to get your hands", I can avoid forcing the players into binary choices of how they get the goods - hijack the ship in space, steal it before it takes off, storm aboard and kill everyone with a toenail clipper, choice is yours but the cargo needs to be gotten
  • Not to sound defensive by getting specific or petty, but it's not a case of 3 episodes & 3 planets, the players flit between (I think) 11 locations during the adventure
  • I personally don't know that I'll ever run an FFG adventure book as written but what I have done is taken a bunch of their content and tweaked and added it so that I create something fun for my players - I would hope that, if nothing else, this would be workable as inspiration for at least a halfway entertaining session for some players.
  • Again, I agree wholeheartedly with what you say about the FFG mission structure but whilst it might not be to our tastes, they evidently think it's a reasonable model.
  • I am by my own admission, really still a newbie to this (having taken a 30 year hiatus from the hobby) so I'm sure I'll learn along the way, particularly if this awesome community will give the kind of candid feedback you've given :)
  • FWIW, whilst I have 2 more adventures that I'm fleshing out, I'm way more passionate about 3 sourcebooks I'm working on that are in various stages of completion as I absolutely agree with you in that I would rather give a setting with enough detail for others to build their own adventures around rather than railroading players, but those are a lot more work and I don't have anywhere near as much free time as I would like.

Genuinely, thank you again for the honest feedback, please keep it coming :)

Edited by DangerShine Designs

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57 minutes ago, SEApocalypse said:

Anyway, I am sure that the locations and ideas will be wonderful. FFG has giving us plenty of good examples how to do this properly, but it seems just as much like a railroad like a standard FFG adventure. But hey, maybe I am wrong, I always hope that I am wrong. :)

 

If you are disappointed, I'm sure they will give you your money back in full.

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3 hours ago, SEApocalypse said:

Here comes another choo choo full of surprises  … ;-)
f1ad645e33161157e4c0256e654af25a4c73b4a4

I think the title of the Adventure makes this really funny. I too am an anti-railroad guy, but I can't help but appreciate the effort and care that goes into creating these community made pre-mades. They really are fantastic if nothing else but for reading and inspiration. Compared to many games I have played, modules for this game tend to be kind of a fun thing to read that doesn't rely on clunk matrices every paragraph. 

But yeah 3 episodes over 11 locations can be done in a way that the players don't see it coming, but it's hard to pull off, and if you have even one guy in the group who doesn't appreciate linear games you will be in for a rough time. Bless those people who just love pre-made adventures and just kick back for the ride. I really do marvel at them being able to be fully on board and loving every minute of it. 

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9 hours ago, SavageBob said:

If you are disappointed, I'm sure they will give you your money back in full.

Time = Money, so I doubt it. :P

Though the answer from the OP seems like he shares my basic expressions from the official FFG adventures. So jumping in and investing some time seems worth it. So, now I have  to genuine thank  DangerShine,  because addressing my rant-like concerns in such direct way was very kind. I am Looking forward to read this aventure. 

 

9 hours ago, whafrog said:

Wow, all that critique from a synopsis.  How about wait until it's out before starting the pontification?

The premise sounds good to me.  I only promise that I won't run it as written, because if I did, that would be a first in all my RPG experience... :)

I am just a little touchy on the subject based on our recent experiences with the official FFG adventures. ^_^ 

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On ‎2‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 12:51 PM, SavageBob said:

If you are disappointed, I'm sure they will give you your money back in full.

woah, hold on now - buyer beware!

On ‎2‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 12:52 PM, whafrog said:

Wow, all that critique from a synopsis.  How about wait until it's out before starting the pontification?

The premise sounds good to me.  I only promise that I won't run it as written, because if I did, that would be a first in all my RPG experience... :)

 

Thank you, will hold you to that ;)

On ‎2‎/‎14‎/‎2018 at 2:57 PM, Archlyte said:

I think the title of the Adventure makes this really funny. I too am an anti-railroad guy, but I can't help but appreciate the effort and care that goes into creating these community made pre-mades. They really are fantastic if nothing else but for reading and inspiration. Compared to many games I have played, modules for this game tend to be kind of a fun thing to read that doesn't rely on clunk matrices every paragraph. 

But yeah 3 episodes over 11 locations can be done in a way that the players don't see it coming, but it's hard to pull off, and if you have even one guy in the group who doesn't appreciate linear games you will be in for a rough time. Bless those people who just love pre-made adventures and just kick back for the ride. I really do marvel at them being able to be fully on board and loving every minute of it. 

The title is just me following in the FFG/Star Wars trend of using a quote or phrase from the movies (it's working title was "No Such Thing As Luck") rather than me trying to promote the adventure as being so super-clever.  And I take your points that it might be challenging but hey, this IS the work of an amateur and should be taken as such :)

16 hours ago, SEApocalypse said:

Time = Money, so I doubt it. :P

Though the answer from the OP seems like he shares my basic expressions from the official FFG adventures. So jumping in and investing some time seems worth it. So, now I have  to genuine thank  DangerShine,  because addressing my rant-like concerns in such direct way was very kind. I am Looking forward to read this aventure. 

I am just a little touchy on the subject based on our recent experiences with the official FFG adventures. ^_^ 

hey, like I said, I really appreciated the feedback! Keep it coming, I have a thick skin :)

And can I ask, what do you mean with your last statement about your recent experiences with the office adventures?

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39 minutes ago, DangerShine Designs said:

 

To be clear, it was only funny in the context of SEApocalypse making that post. I like the title a lot, and when I first read it I appreciated the quote and felt it captured the Star Wars vibe. So my first response to it was good and remains as such. I was only enjoying the irony within the context of SEA's opposition to pre-made linear story adventures. 

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This looks interesting and I cannot wait to look it over. Feel free to use this style of posting for anyone's upcoming projects. I think it helps maintain the feel of the preview articles we get from the FFG website. Plus it makes sure we actually DO get the project finished on time. ;)

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13 hours ago, Quelthan said:

This looks interesting and I cannot wait to look it over. Feel free to use this style of posting for anyone's upcoming projects. I think it helps maintain the feel of the preview articles we get from the FFG website. Plus it makes sure we actually DO get the project finished on time. ;)

Completely agree, and exactly why I adopted it - thank you again!

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