Brainstorming What the RPG One Shot is About

Ten ideas for an RPG one shot adventure, from a winding suburb community to a futuristic farm complex, are discussed in this brainstorm.

The Brainstorm Process

As a recap, my brainstorm process involves setting a topic, sticking with that topic, not worrying about if the idea is good or bad, and knowing when to stop. For brainstorming the first One Shot RPG narrative, I decided to stop when I felt like I had enough unique ideas to pick something.

Brainstorm Topic

The topic of this brainstorm is to figure out what the first RPG one shot is about. Other requirements include taking place on Earth, focusing on bringing down a scummed, and being able to be divided up into encounters.

What is the RPG one shot about?

  • Winding suburb, neighbors with secrets, people going missing
  • Infiltrating a corporate HQ to take down a scummed CEO
  • Search-and-rescue operation aboard a research vessel
  • Haunted house, evil spirit
  • Remote village in a forest. People are being replaced by killer androids
  • Serial killers forced to fight at an underground facility
  • Funeral facility
  • Street gangs with scummed leaders
  • Cults as companies, sacrifices to an old god
  • Farm of the future, using people as livestock

Where’s the Sci-Fi?

Many of these ideas are horror tropes, and don’t necessarily fit in with the world of One Shot RPG. At this stage, that’s ok. The ideas above are a starting point, and over time they’ll morph into something that matches the tone and style of the setting.

Exploring the Ideas

Winding Suburb

This idea comes from the article that discusses fleshing out a scummed individual. In a winding gated suburb, neighbors are keeping secrets from each other. They see and hear things, but refuse to admit anything’s wrong. People on the outside are going missing, last seen wandering the streets of the community late at night. There’s a scummed who stalks and collects individuals, luring them to their house-converted-to-torture-chamber. The first victims were threats to society, but the scummed’s twisted worldview is now labelling any shady character a threat—including the party.

Corporate HQ

One of the world’s megacorps is hiding something important that the party wants—a scummed CEO. The monster is using their power of suggestion to force interns to be their shield while experimenting on them. The party must infiltrate the headquarters, convince innocents to vacate the building without alerting the guards, find the CEO, and take them down. This idea comes from the previous article.

Search-and-Rescue

As brainstormed in the previous article, there’s a research spaceship that’s sending out an SOS. Inside, the welcoming party is made up of genetically engineered monsters. The party goes from room to room figuring out what happened to the crew, and what type of people they were. Little does the party know that there’s a scummed that’s stalking them, one that lays eggs in the corpses of the crew that hatch into the creatures infesting the ship.

Haunted House

The party investigates a house, one that has rumors of being haunted. There’s stories of an evil woman who used to live there and the atrocities she committed, including taking an innocent man prisoner. Legend has it that the man found a way out of her clutches, by sealing her in the house, where her spirit is trapped. The party, skeptical of the afterlife, slowly begin to believe the stories as they witness supernatural events. But this isn’t the result of ghosts, it’s the result of scummed. That man in the stories isn’t quite so innocent as the stories suggest.

Remote Village In Forest

This idea takes place in a remote village surrounded by a dense forest. Each week a villager goes missing, but manages to wander back into the village after a couple days. The party gets caught up in the village’s dynamics, trying to figure out the cause and who the next target will be. When exploring the area, one of the victims corners the party and attacks, revealing themselves to be a killer android, one that’s more advanced than possible, one that passes for a real person. Now the questions are if anyone in the village real, and where’s the scummed pulling the strings?

Serial Fights

A scummed collects murderers and serial killers in an underground facility and forces them to fight against each other in gladiatorial combat. When the party is mistaken for criminals, they’re captured. Now they must escape the scummed’s clutches, but their allies in the facility are not good people.

Funeral Facility

At a funeral facility—or a “corpse processing plant”—there’s a scummed that enjoys tinkering with the body parts of the dead. They animate corpses, create shambling horrors, and even wear the bodies of the deceased.

Street Gangs

The party is caught between the conflict of two rival street gangs, one that happens to be led by a scummed. Most of the action takes place on a single city block.

Cults as Companies

One of the Earth’s megacorps is the religion industrial complex. Every religion, from the major faiths to the minor mystery cults, are subsidiaries of the same entity. A new cult, that claims to worship an old god, is quickly gaining customers followers. But the cult leader soon demands sacrifices to their deity, who turns out to be a scummed. The party must try to save the sacrifices, break the hold the cult leader has over their followers, and take down the scummed “god”.

Farm of the Future

What does a farm 300 years into our future look like? Towering solar-powered structures with automated growing systems. Labs that grow animal-free meat and genetically engineer produce. Throw a scummed in the mix and you get a poisoned food chain, people as livestock, and even cannibalism. The secret ingredient is people.