log in or register to remove this ad

 

5E 'The Thing' Inspired Rime of the Frostmaiden Has Player Secrets [Updated]

Made popular in boardgames, such as Battlestar Galactica, the idea of players with secrets can increase the tension of games. Rime of the Frostmaiden introduces 'character secrets'.

thing_poster.jpg

“I think the most interesting part [of Rime of the Frostmaiden] is the character secrets... characters can play it one of two ways. They can keep their secret close to their chest and not reveal it to the other players, fostering and breeding paranoia, or they can reveal it anytime they want to, and then wrestle with the consequences of it. That’s left entirely up to the players.”
- WotC's Chris Perkins​


It's not clear if it's a full-fledged traitor mechanic like in some other games, or just an extension of the traits/bonds/flaws guidelines.

UPDATE -- this post (below) has some more information from EN Worlder ikj. "It's a card you can draw at character creation. If you like it you keep it. If you don't you can take another. I don't get the impression it's a 'traitor mechanic' so much as a way to add some interesting twists to character interactions and add some tie-ins with the plot."

In other news, the adventure is very inspired by John Carpenter's The Thing.

The Thing is a story about an isolated group of people dealing with a monster in their midst, and much of the movie takes place at night. If you take that idea and apply it to a D&D campaign, there’s lot of potential there,” he said over email. “When your setting is a cold, dark, isolated place, the horror comes easily. I was struck by the fact that our previous excursions to Icewind Dale didn’t really lean in that direction, so here was a chance to show Icewind Dale in a different light.”


From Venturebeat.
 
Russ Morrissey

Comments

Libramarian

Adventurer
I like PvP/intra-party conflict, I just wish the logistics were easier. Last session (on Roll20) the party hired retainers, and one PC secretly recruited and gave orders to a Chaotic Evil retainer behind the Paladin's back. It was quite challenging to handle multiple threads at once.

I suspect the secrets discussed here are just little RPing prompts, though.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

It may not be necessary but it is a preference. I've had bad experiences in the past with PvP so basically I just don't want to deal with it. I cover a fair amount of things in my session 0 document like no evil PCs, don't play a loner who goes out of their way to antagonize everyone and so on. The no PvP is just one minor bullet point.

At a certain point I would just manipulate the scenario so it never gets to the "guns pointed at each other" phase, at least unless it's clear that the PC is not who they think it is (at least to the player of the PC being attacked). Different people play for different reasons, for me some things that would work for a short term or mini campaign would not work for campaigns that I want to go on for a couple of years.
Me. Would take different groups as different groups. Without baggage. Expectation is maturity brought forward by all.
 

It may not be necessary but it is a preference. I've had bad experiences in the past with PvP so basically I just don't want to deal with it. I cover a fair amount of things in my session 0 document like no evil PCs, don't play a loner who goes out of their way to antagonize everyone and so on. The no PvP is just one minor bullet point.

At a certain point I would just manipulate the scenario so it never gets to the "guns pointed at each other" phase, at least unless it's clear that the PC is not who they think it is (at least to the player of the PC being attacked). Different people play for different reasons, for me some things that would work for a short term or mini campaign would not work for campaigns that I want to go on for a couple of years.
Try this approach then: if a party member attacks another the game immediately ends: assumed TPK, everyone looses. In the modern horror genre "everyone dies" is a perfectly acceptable conclusion.

Otherwise in this genre saying "no PvP" is equivalent to saying "no player character can die". It takes a way the challenge and the fear.
 

Try this approach then: if a party member attacks another the game immediately ends: assumed TPK, everyone looses. In the modern horror genre "everyone dies" is a perfectly acceptable conclusion.

Otherwise in this genre saying "no PvP" is equivalent to saying "no player character can die". It takes a way the challenge and the fear.
Also takes away player agency.
 

One important rule I always bring up during a session 0, is that I do not allow pvp. If your character has grievances with another character, find a peaceful way to make it work. They are only fictional characters, with fictional issues. You can find a reason to get the characters back together, as you are both the actor and the writer. The pc's are the ensemble cast of a show about a bunch of heroes. Regardless of what forces may try to drive them apart, eventually they all get back together. I ask my players to play their characters in such a way, that they do so.

Playing a campaign that includes secrets and themes of paranoia, does not change this rule. The party may be a little on edge, and they may be keeping certain things to themselves, but they are still a party trying to work together.
 


Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Try this approach then: if a party member attacks another the game immediately ends: assumed TPK, everyone looses. In the modern horror genre "everyone dies" is a perfectly acceptable conclusion.

Otherwise in this genre saying "no PvP" is equivalent to saying "no player character can die". It takes a way the challenge and the fear.
So? Saying "I don't want evil murder hobos" also takes away player agency at some level. In all my decades of DMing it's never been an issue. Virtually all games have rules and limitations whether they're explicitly stated or not.

Other people have a slightly different rule: if a PC attacks another PC, the player of the PC getting attacked narrates what happens.
 




jedijon

Explorer
I think it’s SOUNDS awesome. But I’m worried it’ll be watered down—like the adventure plays the same way WITHOUT it. Secrets that is.

players in my campaigns interact with NPCs, I hand them a card with what they learn. Players drive the pace of the reveal. And nobody is so stupid as to notice that when someone says; “Garylmyr says he can help us but for a price”...they mayreally have received a card from me that says “I don’t know who murdered the dwarf”. Generally people play it straight, but I see the wheels turning...

THAT’S what I want from a mechanic where a player has a secret. They have a legitimate option on how much to reveal, when, and whether they’ll introduce misdirection.

I’ll be looking forward to more info on how this unfolds—but it could be bold if it’s not a take-it-or-leave-it mechanic.
 


Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters

Advertisement1

Latest threads

Mythological Figures & Maleficent Monsters

Advertisement2

Advertisement4

Top