Federation-Apocalypse: Character Motivations

    This short series of posts is an online aid for Brian, who’s running the Federation-Apocalypse game.  Now, in any game its important for the characters to make fairly regular progress towards their goals (although fully achieving any one of their hopefully-numerous desired can, and usually should, take quite a while), for the characters to get to use and display their unique abilities, and for the players to encounter the situations and things they find interesting. In the Manifold setting we can add in both worlds the players and/or characters would like to spend some time in and roles they’d like to assume.

   This also makes it easer to throw in the smaller, more immediate and quickly-resolvable plotlines, struggles, and minor rewards that serve to keep the players and characters motivated, involved, and sure of what they’re doing and why when the larger plotlines are obscure, or when too much of the action is occuring around the NPC’s rather than the PC’s. Players hate to be led and hate to be put in a purely reactive role. Most of them get enough of that in reality.

   Hopefully no one will be surprised that I don’t have complete information here: the various players are encouraged to add some notes, edit their entries, or let me know what else they’d like to see in their listings. For the first section, we have Personal Motivations.

   It can be presumed that the characters all want power, fame, and wealth. That’s pretty much a given. It can also be assumed that most of the characters are fundamentally reasonably benign and willing to work in a group. Outside of that however…

   Benedict: Most of Benedict’s current goals are relatively small-scale and personal. He wants to be impressive – to display and improve his dazzling swordsmanship, collect trophies, and to be feared and respected. While he’d like to know more about his current companions, and about what’s going on around him, he’s reluctant to admit ignorance. Someday he wants to return to his homeland, deal with whoever-it-was who brought about his exile, assume dominion over a large portion of that world and possibly beyond, marry, and father a few heirs. On a more subtle level, Benedict wants to prove that Kevin is wrong about his homeland and many of its people being “just dreams” (or to prove it, and at least settle his doubts one way or the other) and to affirm and spread his faith.

   Jarvian: Jarvian wants to upgrade his mech, find the technologies that will work in his home universe, and return in triumph to lead his house to greatness. He’s become aware that the clan invasion will be coming and wants to make preparations to meet it. He also wants to demonstrate that Mechs should NOT be relegated to the role of historical curiosities. He’d devoted too much of his life to them to accept that.

   Kevin: Kevin wants to collect souls. More specifically, he wants to establish becoming one of his Thralls as a respectable career-choice for adolescents in core, to get his ownership of the Thralls legally recognized, and to get the recruiting organized; he’s never going to get too far doing it all himself. He wants to get large, respectable, organizations to start doing his recruiting for him. If at all possible, he wants to get parents and councillors recommending becoming a Thrall to the more adventurous children: they’ll get an excellent power-package up front and be safe, he’ll profit, and those who send them will get extremely useful employees. A good deal all around. Secondarily, wealth, favors, powerful artifacts, and interesting roles are all a lot of fun – and (despite his “I am so evil” routine”), he does like to rescue people who are in trouble, even if he does complain about it along the way. For long term goals, he wants to get enough souls bonded to him to start powering the Dominion abilities.

   Marty: Marty basically wants Fights, Fun (fine food and drink, beautiful women, boisterous parties, etc), and Business Opportunities. At the moment, he mostly wants to establish his own gate network and find people to man a network of trading centers across the Manifold. Secondarily, Marty is simply interested in seeing new and wonderful places and exploring the greater universe that’s opened up to him – although showing off his supernatural durability is fun as well.

   Raphial: Raphial wants to find a way to combine magic and technology to create devices which will work throughout the Manifold, to improve his own devices in a variety of ways, and to demonstrate his own technological skills. Secondarily, he has an abstract loyalty to his employers, both in the manifold and in the core: they should, as a matter of integrity, receive full value in exchange for their support.


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