|Plotting The One Idea (for a game)|
October 6, 2020
So, I asked in a few different places about the ideas I had in my previous entry, and it seems more people would be interested in the 1930s paranormal/supernatural horror than any of the others. And for nearly the past week, I've been brainstorming, bouncing ideas, and plotting this one idea. This is what I'm thinking so far...
This game will likely be a one-shot (or no more than 3 sessions) with 3-6 players, plus the Game Master.
I'm altering history just enough for certain things to exist, and some physics for magical involuntary time travel to happen.
A player's character could come from any time between 1940 and 2020 (could pick from a hat, if needed). The character, in their own time, is either exploring on their own or being dragged by a friend around some "ruins" in a wooded area that was said to be cursed. When they're down by some sacred springs, they happen to look down and spot an old, strange-looking skeleton key that they will (hopefully) pick up.
When they go to leave, they'll find an old grand hotel (that wasn't there before) that looks like it was just built at the top of the stone stairs. What they don't know right away is that they are now back in the 1930s. Also, the key they picked up in their time will now be something else. Like a marble, a box of matches, a spool of thread, or something else (each will be different).
The next thing they'll notice is that the people milling about in and out of the hotel can't see or hear them... except for one old, frail-looking man (or woman). The only person able to see/hear them will also hang around longer than anyone else from that time.
The 3-6 characters can explore the hotel, but when they all find each other in the lobby and realize that they can see and hear each other, they'll start to hear music as well. And that music will suddenly stop when someone opens to the doors to the ballroom. There will be signs of very recent activity, but everyone has vanished.
Also, when the music stops, the first monster will let its presence be known (like a howl or a scream or something).
As the characters explore the hotel, either in an attempt to avoid a monster or to find it, they'll find rooms and stairs where they weren't expecting any. They may also find walls where they might've expected doors or windows. The hotel keeps changing on them. They may or may not be able to leave the hotel, but they cannot leave the property the hotel is on (like there's a barrier around it).
While they are avoiding or fighting monsters and trying to find out why they're here, they'll learn some things from the old person they keep bumping into.
By the next morning, depending on whether they solve the big mystery, the survivors from different times will find themselves back in their own time and will see the fate of the hotel. Did they save it from vanishing that night?
I think a one-shot game is said to last 4 hours and this one might be longer than that, plus whatever time before that to discuss/create the characters, discuss the setting, and set up the story. If it feels like it'll be longer than 5 hours (total), maybe we can break it up into 2-4 hours per session. Once I get a chance to read the game's core book and do more research, I'll have a better understanding of how to play this.
And if this game goes well and the players want to keep their characters, we can figure out another "one-shot" game where their characters can meet up again.
Anyway, this is turning out to be a fun project. Part of me can't wait to start playing.