GM Tool: Thief “Job” Generator

MightyCthulhu

Mongoose
As I posted last week my PC's are about to enter The City of Thieves and I'm looking for plot hooks for them. Since the Party are mostly Thieves themselves I thought it would be nice to run some Thief side quests while in town.

This is new ground for me, but I've been inspired by Iron chef's Excellent GM'S GUIDE TO CREATING HYBORIAN AGE ADVENTURES!

So Here is the first draft of my Hyborian Thief “Job” Idea Generator:

Procedure:
* Pick one of each: Hook, Target, Location, Modus, Loot
* Pick one or more: Complication
* Optionally Pick one: Luck


Hook:
* Hired - A has hired PC to retreive B from C in return for D.
* Rumor - PC makes Gather Information check.
* Clue - somthing PC's find give necessary information (see rumor)
* Opportunity - PC makes Spot/Listen and/or Hide/Move Silently Check.
* Blunder - PC fails Spot/Listen Check and winds up caught in the middle of a crime in progress.

Target: Commoner, craftsman, guild member, bum/drunk/vagrant/outlander, noble, scholar/sorcerer/priest, guardsman, thief/criminal, local hero, city official.

Location: Shop, Residence, Temple, ambush, fortification, ruin, warehouse, ship, Marketplace, park, sewers/tunnels/dungeon, mystical place.

Modus: Looting, Robbery/Burglary, assault/murder, extortion/blackmail/enforcement/intimidation, ransom/kidnapping, pick pocketing, drug/poison, seduction/confidence/forgery/impersonation/bluff.

Loot: Slaves, coin, jewelry, art, alchemical/mystical/quest equipment/item(s), weapons, high quality/rare equipment, information (map scroll, journal, etc.),
livestock, flora (fruits, vegetables, flowers).

Complications: Barriers, Decoys, Guardians, Traps, Things Don’t Go Smooth.
* Barriers: Walls, Gates/Portals, Moats, Watchtowers, Vaults/Safes
* Decoys: mundane, sorcerous, alchemical
* Guardians: men, beasts, demons/summoned monsters
* Traps: mundane, sorcerous, alchemical
* Things Don’t Go Smooth: Wandering Guardian, Bad Information, Rival Thief, Betrayal, Unexpected Visitor, Target on the Move.

Luck: sleeping guardians, disarmed/sprung traps, Rival Takes the Heat, Insider Ally, Thief Ally

Edit Log
9/29/05 3 PM - expanded confidence
9/30/05 9 AM - fixed typos - added assault/murder and enforcement/intimidation, location
9/30/05 12 PM - added Hooks, drug/poison, seduction and drunks.
10/03/05 AM - added Betrayal.
 

MightyCthulhu

Mongoose
Whops I forgot to ask for feedback. Does anyone see anything that would useful to add or have other comments or suggestions for this?
 

thulsa

Mongoose
MightyCthulhu said:
Whops I forgot to ask for feedback. Does anyone see anything that would useful to add or have other comments or suggestions for this?

Good work, this looks very useful. I will definitely add it to my "toolbox". :D

- thulsa
 

urdinaran

Mongoose
A. why does the target have to be a person? Couldn't the target be the actual loot? Seems the way it is now, it's primarily a Mugging Generator Table. Maybe add a chart at the beginning for the type of job? Mugging, kidnapping, extortion, smuggling, burglary, assassination, etc.

B. Complications could probably be expanded a little, too many physically-oriented ones; just thinking of how many complications Conan ran into in his career. Betrayed by prostitute/lover for example...
 

MightyCthulhu

Mongoose
urdinaran said:
A. why does the target have to be a person? Couldn't the target be the actual loot? Seems the way it is now, it's primarily a Mugging Generator Table. Maybe add a chart at the beginning for the type of job? Mugging, kidnapping, extortion, smuggling, burglary, assassination, etc.

IMO, taking loot that does not belong to someone doing does not qualify as thieving. Perhaps Victim would be a better title than target. Also I think Mugging is a Modus aka assault/murder. To me Mugging connotes an assault which takes place in a public place (street/park etc.) I think the chart you are referring to is the Modus.

urdinaran said:
B. Complications could probably be expanded a little, too many physically-oriented ones; just thinking of how many complications Conan ran into in his career. Betrayed by prostitute/lover for example...
I'm not a big Howard scholar so I don't really know what complications Conan ran into. Betrayal is a good one, do you have others to suggest?
 

MightyCthulhu

Mongoose
I used the generator to randomly generate some Jobs. Then used the generated material to inspire a few adventures for me:

Generated Job
Hook: Clue - PC finds a clue which gives necessary information. Search check DC:15
Target: Guild member
Location: Fortification
Modus: Looting
Loot: Slaves
Complications: mundane Decoy, mundane Decoy, mundane Trap
Fortune: Sleeping guardians

Adventure Idea: The PCs find a clue that leads them to believe that a slave of a local guildman is actually the child of a foreign noble. If they can return the child they can expect a handsome reward. The PCs must enter the guildhouse which has a few mechanical traps, find the child (there are many child-slaves at work here) and escape.


Generated Job
Hook: Hired - NPC has hired PC to retrieve LOOT from TARGET in return for COIN.
Target: Commoner
Location: Shop
Modus: assault/murder
Loot: jewelry
Complications: Wandering Guardian, Unexpected Visitor, Guardian (men), Barrier (Moats)
Fortune: Insider Ally

Adventure Idea: The NPC in the Hook is a servant (a feeble Stigian perhaps) of a local Merchant. The Servant has discovered that the Merchant is in possession of a small bauble (A Ring with a serpentine design?) which is a family heirloom of the Servant's house. The servant hires the PCs to enter the shop, kill the Merchant and return the ring to him. He provides entry (sneaking the PCs into the house in the middle of the night) and assistance (locations of guardians.) Unfortunately one of the guards will be up and has planned a clandestine meeting of his own. Perhaps he is "on the take" and lets a rival Thief or assassin in at the same time?
 
Top