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Froogleyboy
2009-06-13, 06:17 PM
Ok, I have talked about DnD to my mom for years and shes always hated it. She didn't want me to be a geek (her view of geekdom is from 1980's cliches) and she thinks its kinda cultish. But now she has agreed to play a family game with me. It will be 3.5 and I want to keep it simple. I really don't want to scare her away from it.

A few things you should know

She loves mystery (especially involving vamps and were's)
I don't wan't dragons or faries because i don't want too much cliche fantasy
not to much fighting, but a lot of suspense (and a little violence)

SSGoW
2009-06-13, 06:22 PM
wow goodluck but one thing you could do is find a good vampire movie or book and base the adventure off that or make the adventure about finding the real dracula (Vlad the Impaler prince) and bringing in some education into it also. also you could find some traps and puzzles somewhere by using google or searching the forums on here

Thorin
2009-06-13, 06:23 PM
Make her play a beguiler (one of the less violent classes out there).

-Nothing screems mystery as illusion and enchantment only.
-She wouldn`t need to select spells beacuse the list is stationary (and you could heplp her when she get advanced learning)
-Hide, move silently, search, listen, spot, bluff... perfect for a first time game

Frankly, with illusions from her hand I think she is going to have a lot of fun


As for the story, a vampire hunting a small vilage is of course cliche, but really efective. First session rounding graveyards, second exploring a labirinth/crypt, third session a good fight vs the big ols chump and you are pretty much done to show her how is like.

Roleplaying is quite easy acomplish if someone else is gonna play. Otherway, make a paladin as an NPC to go with her and you are set.


Cheers for your mum!

Zaq
2009-06-13, 06:24 PM
-Who else is playing?

-Who's DMing?

-What level were you thinking?

-Do you want a one-shot, a small arc, or an actual campaign?

-How well does she understand the rules already? Has she actually sat down and read the PHB for herself? If not, is she willing to? How much prep time is she willing to spend on this?

-What books do you want to use? (Core-only might be "simpler," but remember that Core is the least balanced set of books in the WotC canon.)

yilduz
2009-06-13, 06:25 PM
Ok, I have talked about DnD to my mom for years and shes always hated it. She didn't want me to be a geek (her view of geekdom is from 1980's cliches) and she thinks its kinda cultish. But now she has agreed to play a family game with me. It will be 3.5 and I want to keep it simple. I really don't want to scare her away from it.

A few things you should know

She loves mystery (especially involving vamps and were's)
I don't wan't dragons or faries because i don't want too much cliche fantasy
not to much fighting, but a lot of suspense (and a little violence)

Well, I don't think my mom would have ever played D&D, but around the time I started playing it, she didn't like it at all. Then she watched a show, one of those "back in the 80s" tv shows or whatever. They were talking about D&D in it and someone said "I wish I would have been playing D&D back in the day. Those guys are the successful ones with all the money now." Since then, my mom was never against me playing D&D.

Sanguine
2009-06-13, 06:27 PM
Just a random thought but for starting the adventure have the party(or is it just her playing?) be attacked by a Lycanthropic Assassin(Not necessarily the PrC) with a cryptic contract and she has to figure out who put a hit on her/the party.

Shinizak
2009-06-13, 06:32 PM
A man on a large city dock has been murdered and has a note tucked in his pocket saying they (the killers) want half a million gold and the daughter of the the town guard, or face the dead of hundreds more.

Fast forward to the end.

Turns out the daughter of the town guard is actually an evil rogue/sorceress who was going to poison a new shipment of meat with a highly contagious virus (like with the black plague or something) And simply charm some guy into saying he was the killer.

mistformsquirrl
2009-06-13, 06:41 PM
Well, I don't think my mom would have ever played D&D, but around the time I started playing it, she didn't like it at all. Then she watched a show, one of those "back in the 80s" tv shows or whatever. They were talking about D&D in it and someone said "I wish I would have been playing D&D back in the day. Those guys are the successful ones with all the money now." Since then, my mom was never against me playing D&D.

Wish I'd had that luck <@_@> My mom -

A) Thought it would turn me satanic

B) Blamed headaches, colds, and generally any bad thing that happened to her for the first 3 years I played on my books. She actually had me store them in the car for awhile <x_x>

C) Thought that when we were casting spells in game... we were actually trying to cast spells in RL. ... And no, showing her the rules didn't help >.<;

Ironically she had no problem with us playing World of Darkness or Shadowrun lol <T_T> (My mom's a good person, and she's not stupid; but she was raised in such a way that some ideas get lodged in her head and it takes a hell of a lot to get them back out.)

---

Thankfully the problem was solved when a friend of hers who's son played said it was absolutely nothing to worry about. (Yeah, that's really all it took; another adult saying "It's cool" heh <T_T>)

---

Advice... hrmm...

This is a tough one. I'm thinking an inner-city rogue type campaign. Lots of misdirection, illusion, etc...

Shinizak has a fair idea there. The level of depth you want to take it to is entirely up to you and what you think she'll like.

Froogleyboy
2009-06-13, 06:44 PM
Ok, seems there is some confusion (due to me not posting enough info)


I am DMing
We are just using core
First level
Some mysteries would be helpful

Tiki Snakes
2009-06-13, 06:51 PM
If stuck for ideas, there are some downloads on the WOTC site of various old modules (adnd or so) including one or two from Ravenloft. Sounds like they could provide a good basis, though anything combat related etc youd maybe have to stat up and handle yourself, the actual plot and so on is at least handled already. :)

HamsterOfTheGod
2009-06-13, 06:57 PM
Ok, I have talked about DnD to my mom for years and shes always hated it. She didn't want me to be a geek (her view of geekdom is from 1980's cliches) and she thinks its kinda cultish. But now she has agreed to play a family game with me. It will be 3.5 and I want to keep it simple. I really don't want to scare her away from it.

A few things you should know

She loves mystery (especially involving vamps and were's)
I don't wan't dragons or faries because i don't want too much cliche fantasy
not to much fighting, but a lot of suspense (and a little violence)


Why not make her a vampire spawn or a were and have a dark campaign? The character powers should be easy for her to understand. Introduce classes later. To keep the fighting down, you could have a vampire masquerade like setting where truces exist between the evil factions. One of the faction lords hires them to investigate a potentially troubling situation like the kidnapping/seduction of someone who was supposedly under protection.

Or if you want her to start at first level and be a heroic character, then start off with lower level horrors like skeletons and zombies and evil clerics and magic users. For ex, you could have a gothic setting with seemingly normal people but one of them holds a dark secret...there are clues...a young girl has been kidnapped...zombies or wolves attack a farmer (before the pcs get there)...You could even have the mastermind be a vamp. If you weaken the vamp or were enough (due to punishment from its lord or age) and properly equip the pcs it could be a fair fight for level 1 characters. Or, if the mastermind is a fully powered vamp or were, leave the fight for later levels. You can have the vamp or were reveal himself but let the heroes go "This time!"

Almn
2009-06-13, 07:01 PM
Oooo Shadowrun! Or call of cthulithu! Those have grim dark gritty mystery!...Munchkin?

GolemsVoice
2009-06-13, 07:10 PM
How about the classic "Town with a dark secret"?

There are many things you can do with that, and each provide an easy adventure hook.
For example, there isa town where travelers dissapear. Not frequently, at least not often enough for someone to notice, but finally some clever man has discovered that there might be some evil about. So the heroes are sent to investigate and if possible rid the town of this evil. And the adventurerer is... YOUR MOMMA! (Couldn't resist:smallwink:)
Maybe a vampire secretly has the town under his influence, and people who recognize him for what he is just die, or maybe he sometimes can't resist his urge and drains a traveler dry, instead of just sucking on the locals.
Or maybe they worship an evil deity, and occasionaly, people are sacrificed. You could even end this scenario without a fight, where the hero(es) storm rin right before the sacrifice and disperese the cultists. After the adventure, the real forces come in and cleanse the town.

Froogleyboy
2009-06-13, 07:13 PM
Sorry for yet another nitpick but I want her to be a hero (If I make it an evil campaign that might make her hate it more) and I do want dark mystery but there needs to be happiness and cheery people sometimes.

Gnaeus
2009-06-13, 07:20 PM
If it were me, I would avoid horror/evil cults/anything supernatural evil like the plague. I would have her make a rogue, fighter or ranger. Mystery is really good, but if I had anything dungeon crawly, lots of traps and especially puzzles.

In other words, emphasize that roleplaying is about problem solving and creative thinking. Failing that, go to high fantasy. Horror pushes the wrong buttons with many normals.

Kyouhen
2009-06-13, 07:57 PM
If she likes mystery and wants to kill off an evil monster, I'd suggest doing what I did for a game (which itself was stealing an idea from someone else here :smalltongue:) and run a copy of The Thing. The players have to stop by an inn to rest for the night because of a terrible blizzard. People start dying off, and it turns out there's an extremely sneaky mimic lurking around the inn pretending to be various objects and ambushing people when it catches them alone in a room. You'd just have to find a good reason to have the mimic there in the first place. Some thieves who are also at the inn who just raided a wizard's tower is the idea I used. They didn't realize the wizard had a pet mimic. :smalltongue:

13_CBS
2009-06-13, 07:58 PM
You said that she likes vampires and werewolves. But what KIND of vampires and werewolves?

Just taking vampires, you have...

Monstrous blood-suckers (the really old way of thinking about vampires--they're basically boogeymen, things that go bump in the night, out there to feast on your blood)

Classy, but murderous ("I vant to suck your bloood...", the classic Bela Lugosi seductive vampire, the kind who charms women by being mysterious and alluring, while also possessing class and nobility)

Dark and troubled creatures of the city (a pinch of World of Darkness, if you will, where the vampires hide among humans and are numerous, and must deal with living as an undead creature that cannot survive the daylight, dark emotions and feelings of isolation etc. etc.)


I dunno about werewolves, but how well does your mom tolerate werewolf violence? You may wish to research the werewolf/vampire mysteries she enjoys to be sure of how much violence and how much mystery (and what kind of mystery) she'd like.

Weimann
2009-06-13, 08:01 PM
Why not set it up like a criminal novel? If she played a rogue (possibly Elf one) with high Spot, Listen, Search, Sense Motive and Gather Information checks, she could investigate a murder or something equally mainstream. That would also leave the scene open for any and all kinds of personalities; from the cheery and helpful ones to the grudgy and introvert (to display the diversity of the game, and make her realize it doesn't HAVE to be about dragons and gold treasures).

Some people might get insulted for her badgering them about details of a murder and attack her, but you wouldn't have to fight to the death (just make them lose a couple of HP, or have her slap them around a bit to make them comply, or alternatively, succeed on a Diplomacy roll if she doesn't feel like hurting them). Also, in the classic Big Reveal in the end, she could have to chase down the fleeing criminal (who possibly pulled a crossbow and wounded the guard sergeant who was there to arrest him). That would have some in it too.

It's a pretty different kind of adventure, but one that I myself wouldn't mind playing. Still, I can imagine there'd be problems with it. What if she doesn't find a clue you had intended? I can imagine this being solved by talking to witnesses who mention something about seeing strange stuff going on near that room, and thus giving her a higher circumstance modifier when she goes back to look again. Also encourage her to take 20.

Let her use her class skills and try to keep up the pace of the game without devolving into too much dice rolling, and I'm sure she'll see DnD in a new light before it's over.

Either that or a kidnapping drama to boot. Focus is yet again on the detective work and information gathering, but this would have a potential to introduce spying (Move Silently, Hide) to a greater extent, provided on what your mom's character is like. It might also be easier to work vampires in here, even if I can see that happening in the previous setting too.

In any case, tailor the adventure for her; make her useful and involved. If she maxes out some skill, make sure she gets a use for it.

Oh, yes, is this a game for only the two of you, or will she have party backup?

On the note, at least my father doesn't think it's satanic or cultlike or anything, he just thinks it's childish. I guess I'm lucky :P

Coidzor
2009-06-13, 08:11 PM
Anyone mentioned the original castle ravenloft adventure? It's got a fair bit of suspense and mystery since you're not supposed to be going the direct confrontation route. Or at least so I've heard.

And it's got vampires and that sort of thing thrown into the mix.

Froogleyboy
2009-06-13, 08:50 PM
New info (since I'm still not being clear)

She just said she wants to be a "Garden Gnome Treehugger" (She said this without knowing of gnomes and druids so thats cool) so she will be, of course, A gnome druid. She likes all types of Vamps (cuz no 2 vamps are exactly the same)

13_CBS
2009-06-13, 08:56 PM
Then if she's a gnomish druid...what about this:

A peaceful rural village somewhere (could be medieval, could be a modern day setting, your choice) hosts a variety of people, among them a local gnomish druid. He lives by himself in the woods, but he frequently visits the villagefolk (they make such excellent bread), and at home he's always accompanied by the animals, so he's never lonely.

One day, a mysterious man with slick black hair comes into town. Nothing seems wrong at first, but the animals in the woods are acting a bit weird, almost...bloodthirsty. It's up to the gnome to find out. The local hermit becomes an investigator!

Cliche, probably really cheesy, but I think it ought to be simple and easy to run, and probably won't wind up having rivers of blood running about.

Froogleyboy
2009-06-13, 09:02 PM
Then if she's a gnomish druid...what about this:

A peaceful rural village somewhere (could be medieval, could be a modern day setting, your choice) hosts a variety of people, among them a local gnomish druid. He lives by himself in the woods, but he frequently visits the villagefolk (they make such excellent bread), and at home he's always accompanied by the animals, so he's never lonely.

One day, a mysterious man with slick black hair comes into town. Nothing seems wrong at first, but the animals in the woods are acting a bit weird, almost...bloodthirsty. It's up to the gnome to find out. The local hermit becomes an investigator!

Cliche, probably really cheesy, but I think it ought to be simple and easy to run, and probably won't wind up having rivers of blood running about.


I like, but what makes them blood thirsty. More details

13_CBS
2009-06-13, 09:03 PM
I like, but what makes them blood thirsty. More details

I made this up in, like, 5 seconds, what the heck are you expecting?! THAT, is the mystery. :smallamused:

lsfreak
2009-06-13, 09:05 PM
I like, but what makes them blood thirsty. More details

He has a secret Orb of Makes-animals-bloodthirsty. She finds out his brothercousinfatherson has an even worse Orb of Makes-people-bloodthirsty, and the animals were a test run.

Sanguine
2009-06-13, 09:05 PM
I like, but what makes them blood thirsty. More details

The obvious answer is a mutated strand of vampirism.

Olo Demonsbane
2009-06-13, 09:10 PM
Maybe hes a preist of Malar?

Assassin89
2009-06-13, 09:10 PM
New info (since I'm still not being clear)

She just said she wants to be a "Garden Gnome Treehugger" (She said this without knowing of gnomes and druids so thats cool) so she will be, of course, A gnome druid. She likes all types of Vamps (cuz no 2 vamps are exactly the same)

Even the ones that sparkle? [/joke]

As for the element of mystery, her character could be looking for the cause of an abnormality in the forest.

Froogleyboy
2009-06-13, 09:13 PM
Damnit, should've said she likes all vamps that make sense.

13_CBS
2009-06-13, 09:13 PM
Even the ones that sparkle? [/joke]

As for the element of mystery, her character could be looking for the cause of an abnormality in the forest.

Perhaps it might be better if the adventure eventually led the gnome druid into the village. It will "sell" D&D a bit better to the mother, I think, if she rescues a bunch of farmers she has a connection to from the clutches of an evil vampire.

AslanCross
2009-06-13, 09:15 PM
There's a couple of free Eberron adventures on the WOTC site that involve mystery and investigation. Even if you don't plan on using the setting, you could just file off the serial numbers so to speak. Running a murder investigation adventure in Sharn is definitely not cliche fantasy.

EDIT: My bad, I think they were published in Dungeon magazine.

JonestheSpy
2009-06-13, 09:15 PM
Ok, I have talked about DnD to my mom for years and shes always hated it. She didn't want me to be a geek (her view of geekdom is from 1980's cliches) and she thinks its kinda cultish. But now she has agreed to play a family game with me. It will be 3.5 and I want to keep it simple. I really don't want to scare her away from it.



Can I just say that the idea of playing DnD with my mom gives me the screaming heebie jeebies?

Don't know why exactly - it's not like the games I play with friends are that "out there" or anything, just that it was one of those things where I was getting away from my family, I suppose.

Zain
2009-06-13, 09:30 PM
In the book Dming for Dummies, teir is a normal type adventure that has an evil wizzard attacking a farming twon, that might work

but i second the playing D&D with Mom idea, my mother says well away from D&D, but then again Dad played D&D back in the day so...

TheThan
2009-06-13, 10:23 PM
I would set up a basic “who dunnit” scenario, the players have to discover who killed the daughter of the local mayor.

The killer should be the girl’s boyfreind, a guy bitten by a werewolf a month or so ago and is beginning to realize the effects of Lycanthropy. He doesn’t quite know what to do; he feels horrible about the killings but is not quite sure it was really him or if he’s just going crazy. Once the party narrows it down to who has done it they need to find a cure for him. Unfortunately the only cure for someone affected by lycanthropy is found in the cellar of an abandoned castle somewhere out of town. The pcs need to go and retrieve it. once there the pcs find that the castle has been over run with monsters and to get to the item they need they’ll have to fight and think their way through the fortress.

Renegade Paladin
2009-06-13, 10:38 PM
Ok, I have talked about DnD to my mom for years and shes always hated it. She didn't want me to be a geek (her view of geekdom is from 1980's cliches) and she thinks its kinda cultish. But now she has agreed to play a family game with me. It will be 3.5 and I want to keep it simple. I really don't want to scare her away from it.

A few things you should know

She loves mystery (especially involving vamps and were's)
I don't wan't dragons or faries because i don't want too much cliche fantasy
not to much fighting, but a lot of suspense (and a little violence)

Here, have the perfect adventure for what you just described. (http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/we/20041015a)

HamsterOfTheGod
2009-06-13, 11:39 PM
Sorry for yet another nitpick but I want her to be a hero (If I make it an evil campaign that might make her hate it more) and I do want dark mystery but there needs to be happiness and cheery people sometimes.

How about this then. The gnome treehugger, and her friends, get hired to find out who is mutliating the local livestock. The trail leads to the local werewolf or vamp except they're your typical atypical conflicted werewolf/vamp and they are innocent...in this case. The actual culprit is an evil cleric who is using the animal blood for his ghastly rituals in a skeleton and zombie filled swamp.

Mark Hall
2009-06-13, 11:51 PM
If you think you can pull it off, you may try a mystery like:

You are all stuck in an inn due to a snowstorm that has blown in. Roadside inn, miles from most towns (it's a crossroads, or something). Someone is found murdered in the common room at night. The trick is now to find out who the murderer is, without becoming a victim yourself.

The murderer, incidentally, is a doppelganger. An eyewitness will have seen person X, but person X was definitely in bed with person Y. Why is the eyewitness blaming person X? Is he the murderer? Can't be; it would be impossible for some reason or another.

Throw things like that around in your head, with a cast of about 7-10 NPCs... one of whom is a doppelganger.

Weimann
2009-06-14, 04:48 AM
Also, will there be more people in the party or just her?

I like HamsterOfTheGod's idea. Save the cute animals, involve a fanged species of your choice, prove said fanged species innocent. It seems like a good idea.

Weimann
2009-06-14, 09:23 AM
Oh, and by the way. Remember to come back and report about how it went :smallbiggrin:

Froogleyboy
2009-06-14, 12:36 PM
I will, I thought of a quest. Tell me how you like it.

The king has been magicly poisoned and the kingdom is in turmoil. She decides to figure what happened. It ends up it was his wife who bribed a coven of hags (don't know how yet) into doing it. But before she can do anything about it she needs to track down Mortius (the kingdoms wizard that retired years ago) for he is the only one who could heal this magic poison. It turns out that Mortius has moved miles a way in a small. When she tracks him down, turns out he is dead and his spellbook was stolen from his tomb.

I think you can figure out the rest.

Also, My little brother will be helping her. He is an Elven Rogue

HamsterOfTheGod
2009-06-14, 01:30 PM
I will, I thought of a quest. Tell me how you like it.

The king has been magicly poisoned and the kingdom is in turmoil. She decides to figure what happened. It ends up it was his wife who bribed a coven of hags (don't know how yet) into doing it. But before she can do anything about it she needs to track down Mortius (the kingdoms wizard that retired years ago) for he is the only one who could heal this magic poison. It turns out that Mortius has moved miles a way in a small. When she tracks him down, turns out he is dead and his spellbook was stolen from his tomb.

I think you can figure out the rest.

Also, My little brother will be helping her. He is an Elven Rogue

Sounds good. Maybe the king's wife is also more than she seems (a hag herself or a faerie or doppleganger or were).

It also sounds like it should be a fun session. The only thing is first level rogues and druids are not that effective against undead. If no other player is a cleric or paladin, it might be a good idea to have one as npc in the party as long as they.

Josh the Aspie
2009-06-14, 02:18 PM
First of all, I encourage you to have the rogue not be a thief, but instead a military scout, or a member of the local guild trained for insertion. That would help show the positive themes the game can portray.

The above idea does indeed work. Lycanthropes are a bit to high level for low level groups.

To expand off of the above idea about aggressive animals, or animals reacting poorly to someone, perhaps one of the well known members of the town the Druid normally lives in has returned from his travels as a merchant or wandering bard, or ranger, and knows he has been infected by a were-wolf, but it has taken him too long, and now he cannot be cured except by high level cleric spells he cannot afford. He comes to his friend the druid (or rogue) to scope them out, and finds they don't have a lot of ready cash on hand. Don't come right out and ask. Be courteous, ask questions about how they are doing, make sure their finances are alright, like someone catching up with an old friend or relative.

On nights of the full moon he chains himself up, as he seeks to find a way to afford the cure, perhaps even going adventuring with them (the bard could be there for arcane / healing / combat support for a while).

Eventually, he breaks loose, or gets desperate enough to rob a local merchant, and then he comes into conflict with the party, either as the were-wolf on the full moon, or as they track down their erstwhile companion as the thief. Perhaps, if he gets agitated enough, the change overcomes him as he flees.

Above all, he should attempt to keep his transformation a secret, out of fear of retribution.

Bonus points if, after all of this is solved, the druid wakes up from a nightmare where her animal companion attacks her (double bonus points if it's canine).

This plot has been adapted from one of my favorite werewolf movies of all time.

maniakmastah
2009-06-14, 04:43 PM
Hmmm, well if you want a good mystery adventure with a little bit of horror and danger mixed, check some of the PDF downloads from Secrets of the Kargatane for Ravenloft (though they'll have to be modified for 3.5 or 4.0, since they are done using AD&D mechanics) or the Quote the Raven PDFs from the Fraternity of Shadows (Ravenloft done with 3.5), all of them should provide you with some good ideas.