21 Plots

21 Plots

From: Gypsy Knights Games
Reviewed by: Ron McClung

21 Plots is a new RPG Supplement from Gypsy Knights Games.

Traveller is one of the oldest scif-fi RPGs in the business and I have played it off and on in different incarnations.  I own several of the original smaller books from the 70s, bought at a con auction, and also own the d20 version.  I primarily run science fiction games, and Traveller has always been a good source of inspiration for one shot as well as campaign adventures.  They set the standard for hard science sci-fi RPGs.  Anyone that tries to create a sci-fi RPG usually ends up modeling something after how Traveller did it.

John Watts and his group of friends are diehard Traveller fans and when Mongoose Publishing put out their edition of the classic version, Gypsy Knights Games arose from that group with a whole slew of material for the Traveller fan.  21 Plots is just one small part of the extensive product library.

From page # 2:
“Using the familiar format for Traveller players, this book presents 21 possible plots for the Referee to use with a gaming group.”

Can’t get much more simple than that.  That is exactly what this book is.  Each plot is one pget and has a simple summary of the intro or pull and then a table for possible gimmicks to the plot.  The tables have 6 total possibilities and range from fairly benign to downright sinister and dangerous. A GM should not feel compelled to roll, of course, if he likes a particular choice in the table.

What I like most about these plot lines is the potential for adventure in them.  Many of them are very inspiring.  They can be used as campaign adventures, one-shots or even background events for specific characters that need fleshing out.

One of the plots I liked was in the very beginning.  The party arrives on a planet and it just so happens that one of them bears an uncanny resemblance to a former dictator.  Running with that would last me a good 3 or 4 sessions, bringing in faction after faction that either hates or loves the dictator. Something I really liked is one of the choices in the tables that says that the dictator is in hiding.  This could be rather inconvenient for the dictator who is looking for a chance to rise to power or it could be a way to fake his death.  This speaks to me because I love political intrigue in a game.

Another good plot describes that characters are hired to deliver some supplies to a remote station only to find it deserted.  A very Alien-esque set up that I realize is not very original but I love a good mystery and a good opportunity to freak the players out with something alien.

From the page # 2:
“Like all our products, the main intention of this book is to provide an extra spark to the Referee’s imagination.”

Of course, these plots can be used anywhere, just about.  Although their passion is Traveller, these are written in a way that I can use them in any of the game settings I run.  Traveller is also not known for its over-reliance on supernatural elements so a creative GM can add more gimmicks relating to supernatural elements in their setting, if they so choose.

In conclusion, I am very tempted to take this book and run an entire campaign with just these as the seeds and then make up the rest as I go.  No story arch, just general real life circumstances that occur in a sci-fi setting.  Of course, story arches can easily grow out of these as time goes on.  These kinds of books are always so useful for a GM like me.

For more details on Gypsy Knights Games and their new RPG Supplement “21 Plots” check them out at their website http://www.gypsyknightsgames.com/ and at all of your local game stores.

Codex Rating: 16

21 Plots
From: Gypsy Knights Games
Type of Game: RPG Supplement
Written by: John Watts, Wendy Watts, Larry Guffey, Tony Hicks
Cover Art by: Dave Ross
Number of Pages: 26
Game Components Included: One soft back book
Game Components Not Included: Traveller core rulebook, Mongoose Publishing
Retail Price: $10.99 softback, $4.99 PDF (US)
Website: www.gypsyknightsgames.com

Reviewed by: Ron McClung