DM needs ideas for linked dream sequence scene
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  1. #1

    DM needs ideas for linked dream sequence scene

    Hey guys, I have a cool idea for my next gaming session. For the record, the game setting is Starfinder so sci-fi ideas work.

    Basically, my players are going to start the next session in their own individual, segregated dream sequences. Here's the kicker though, each player's dream can effect the other player's dreams, but they can't communicate with each other. However, they are allowed to listen in on the dreams of others and use what they hear (sort of like controlled metagaming).

    They need to work together to figure out a way out of the dreams, but have to it without taking to each other.

    A little background: the dreams are controlled by a long dead alien ghost who is trying to communicate with the party about how his civilization was destroyed a millennia ago by a super weapon. He's trying to warn the players that their civilisation will suffer the same fate if they don't act. Basically, I'm running a modified version of the Dead Suns adventure path.

    Any ideas would be nice. Thanks!

  2. #2

    The Grand Druid (Lvl 20)

    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    whitehorse, YT, Canada

    Hmmm...maybe grab three index cards per player. On these, write some "thing" on it that the player may choose to add into the dream. Give each card a 'code' (a number, colour, symbol or whatever). Shuffle the cards in front of the players, then distribute three, randomly, to each Player. Tell them that during their "20 minutes of one-on-one play time" (or 5, or whatever you decide on), they MUST use at least one of the cards, but can't use more than two. What is on the card will be woven into the characters personal session.

    As GM, keep track of the codes. As each player chooses/uses his card(s), secretly put a check mark next to your 'code'. The more checks for a specific code, the more "focused" the next dream becomes on that particular 'code card'. Each code should have their things somewhat related/similar to the others of the same code (e.g., if a "Circle" code, maybe all those cards relate to "air", "open spaces", "long distance", and that kind of thing).

    For example, I'll use symbols (triangle, square, circle). Player One gets Tri, Tri, Cir and plays a Tri and the Cir cards. Player Two gets Tri, Cir, Sq. During his 'dream sequence', the player first plays his Sq card, but then he plays his Cir card. That gives 2 Circle cards; whatever is on Player Two's Circle card becomes a bit more prominent and points to the Circle card that Player one used. Next we have Player Three. He gets Sq, Sq, Cir. Same sort of thing...depending one what card(s) he uses, it adds to the point for that cards code. By the end of the last players turn, the story will have been developing along a "style of outcome". If the codes all end up with Tri = 2, Sq = 2, Cir = 5, then whatever the "focus/theme/style" of the Circle symbol cards will play prominently in how the actual adventure/story ends up.

    I don't think I'm describing exactly what is in my brain, but it does make sense! I guess the gist of it is to let the players choose what cards they think are cool...but it still leaves the specific end-result in your hands to interpret into the actual adventure.

    Gaah! Not enough space to type out what I'm thinking. I hope you 'get' what I'm trying to put down.


    Paul L. Ming

  3. #3
    That's a pretty amazing idea! I'm going to use a couple parts of that. I'm kind of in a similar spot where I'm having a hard time putting down exactly what's in my brain. Thanks for putting in such effort. It helps a lot.

  4. #4

    Grandmaster of Flowers (Lvl 18)

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    The Emerald Coast
    This sounds very similar to the Buffy the Vampire episode "Restless". Might give you some more ideas. Some of the ideas in that episode:

    -A character having to take part in a play in front of all of their family and friends, without knowing any of their lines. Including a very strange version of Death of a Salesman, as if written by someone who has no idea what Death of a Salesman is actually about.
    -Familiar locations that flow into one another, as if they are right next to each other.
    -Familiar characters being cast in strange roles that say something about their personality.
    -A familiar character singing in a bar and providing exposition/clues in the song's lyrics.

    And here's the music to that episode, which is very dreamy as well:
    Last edited by Imaculata; Sunday, 4th November, 2018 at 10:42 AM.

  5. #5

    The Great Druid (Lvl 17)

    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Ft Wayne IN
    One dream looks like Terminator's hell future.
    One dream features Star Trek's "Planet eater" (from Original Series).
    One dream has Tatooine as the outdoors background.
    One dream is reminiscent of Logan's Run (before he escapes outdoors).
    The ghost initially appear as the 2001 Monolith.

  6. #6
    What's your resolution system? Ie how do you decide if the PCs have escaped the dreams?

  7. #7

    Grandfather of Assassins (Lvl 19)

    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    The characters can see each other's dreams in reflective-like surfaces, but they cannot see or interact with each other.

    Start with character A's dream.
    Switch to character B, who has A's dream on the TV in the background.
    After a while, switch to character C, who just wakes from dreaming about B, and ends when the character looks into a mirror to see character A staring back them.
    Switch back to A, who happens to be looking at a picture from B's dream on the wall...

    And so on until the players find a way to start leaving "clues" in the other player's environment, or the dreams start bleeding into one another.

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