Questions tagged [investigation]

For questions about investigating mysteries and crime in-game. Finding and interpreting clues, interrogating witnesses and catching criminals is often crucial to such investigations.

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votes
2answers
315 views

How do I find out who wrote a note?

So I'm playing in a campaign right now, and my party has just received a threatening letter that was left in their dining room stuck to the wall with a dagger. We don't know the writers actual name, ...
8
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3answers
542 views

How can a character discreetly record a conversation for later playback?

If a character wanted to discreetly "record" a conversation as evidence to provide to a judge how could they do this without the other party knowing? Ideally this would only involve RAW D&D 5th ...
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2answers
93 views

Forms of magical forensics, magical investigation and code-breaking using magic

I am currently in the process of writing a D&D 3.5 scenario for my players, and I'm looking at producing a sort of slow burn mystery for them to solve. In the earlier stages the party may (or may ...
6
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0answers
42 views

How do investigative traits work?

I'm about to run a game of Prowlers & Paragons. I have tried it once before, but every scenario I planned was derailed quickly because rolls do not determine success or failure, but rather who ...
3
votes
2answers
456 views

How can someone learn an item's history or the spells used on an item?

We ran into an issue during our recent session. One of our players used the illusory script spell on a magical item (a scroll that was ciphered). The DM claimed, however, that the item had a "...
2
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1answer
151 views

Is there a game system with good mechanics for a PvP murder mystery? [closed]

My players have expressed interest in a PvP murder mystery, where one of them is secretly the murderer. At first I was enthusiastic, but there are several problems I don't know how to get round, and I ...
7
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2answers
241 views

Why do you get so few questions when using the Action: Investigate a Mystery?

It seems strange to me that you'd typically only be allowed to ask 0-2 questions when taking the Investigate a Mystery action. Specifically, I'm imagining situations where a Keeper calls for the ...
8
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6answers
303 views

How to add more combat into an investigation-heavy campaign?

I have experienced such an issue with a previous run of our Fate RPG campaign. The setting is somewhat influenced by the Dresden Files, which means the campaign involved lots of investigation (...
5
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2answers
2k views

What value does Investigation have for regular compaigns?

I have been interested in how to make the Inquisitive Rogue (Xanathar's Guide to Everything, p. 45-46) valuable, but I'm having some difficulty wrapping my head around how to utilize some of its ...
13
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4answers
3k views

Can the Dominate Person spell be used for interrogation?

If you capture a foe and cast dominate person on them, will they then truthfully answer any questions you ask them, such as where their base is located, what secret entrances it has, the password of ...
1
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0answers
181 views

How to have my PCs uncover a mole in the city guard [closed]

So I want to create a situation for the players where they have to figure out who, within the city guard, is secretly working for a certain necromancy cult based in the local swamp. I was initially ...
2
votes
1answer
140 views

What are the Best Practices for running Multi-Slot Investigation Missions at Conventions?

I am attending GenCon this year, and am running a trilogy of 4-hour adventures. These adventures are run in sequence, though I am not guaranteed to have the same players at the table for each step of ...
3
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0answers
199 views

Roleplaying system with minimal focus on combat [closed]

I'm looking to play a tabletop RPG with a couple of friends, and I own the main D&D 4e books. However, we'd like to play a game which is focused more on intrigue and adventure rather than combat. ...
11
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3answers
416 views

Isolation and the unknown in modern horror/investigative scenarios

I am currently planning my next long term game and intend to run a Cthulhu based campaign set in the modern era. I have experience of writing scenarios for the 1920's, but am having issues with some ...
20
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6answers
691 views

How can I moderate the flow of information in a discovery-focused campaign?

30K foot view The overarching structure of my current campaign relies a lot on discovery. My players are placed in an open world that they can explore more or less freely, but in order to make ...
5
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3answers
551 views

Suggestions for structure around “investigation” scenes/stories?

I am GMing Dresden Files. One thing I have found myself struggling with is how to make investigation fun and engaging. Being a huge part of the DF novels, I really want the idea of trying to ...
20
votes
3answers
816 views

How can I have mystery in a Fate plot?

I am going to run a session for a plot. This is going to be an introduction to RPGs, and what I'm trying to do is to add an element of mystery to the plot to keep the players hooked. The plot goes ...
5
votes
2answers
396 views

How to handle mystery adventures when there are copious divination spells? [closed]

I'm gming a Pathfinder game. It's part hack-and-slash and part detective work/mystery solving. The premise is that there is a young necromancer raising the dead to right a wrong. Now, the source book ...
21
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3answers
2k views

How to do mystery based storytelling in Fate?

One of the answers in What better not to use Fate Core for? was that story lines where information is withheld from the players were less suitable for Fate. However, people commented they had been ...
7
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2answers
275 views

Can a Serpentis 3 vampire's scale fall off and keep existing after deactivating the power, as a clue?

In a scenario I am currently writing, I would like the players to follow the trail of some Followers of Set vampires that captured a Gangrel tribe leader. The starting point is the leader's ...
2
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0answers
260 views

Keeping secrets [closed]

I'm running a game where the characters are unraveling a group of assassins that are hunting down magic users. I was looking for some realistic ways to dole out enough information to keep the PCs ...
9
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5answers
2k views

What is a good Modern Fantasy investigative system? [closed]

Specifically, I want to make a modern campaign that will start out this mystery case of the session RPG, and then slowly delve into more and more overt supernatural weirdness. This needs a system that ...
32
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6answers
3k views

How can I learn how to lay out an “evidence scene”?

I feel like I'm particularly bad at any kind of scene where I want to drop clues. I'm hesitant to use the term "crime scene" because it's not always being investigated by "police", and some of these ...
4
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0answers
167 views

How do I handle information in Investigations without “bottlenecking” clues? [duplicate]

I'm playing a "Monster of the Week" style campaign with friends based on shows like Supernatural but with lots of gritty combat, using Savage Worlds as our system because of the fighting scenes. I've ...
2
votes
1answer
266 views

Ideas for a plot twist during a hijacking? [closed]

I'm devising a scenario set on a prestigious vehicle (ocean liner, Concorde, or similar). A little while into the voyage, a group of other passengers (separatist rebels) hijack the vessel via small ...
8
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3answers
439 views

How can I help the GM make investigation engaging for the whole party?

Inspired by How can I make investigation engaging for the whole party?, this is roughly the same question but from the opposite side of the fence. As a player, how can I make the investigations more ...
23
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5answers
3k views

How can I make investigation engaging for the whole party?

I'm about to start a campaign that takes place on a pirate ship. Low magic fantasy setting, loosely based on the Caribbean in the 1600s. Much of the action is going to be centered around various ...
9
votes
1answer
454 views

How do I go about setting up a trial/investigation mission?

I have been running a freeform (no system, basic rules and sheets designed by yours truly), sandbox RPG with a friend of mine for about half a year now. It's my first GM experience and it's been ...
10
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4answers
2k views

Investigating suspects and evidence in a D&D3.x based world

First of all, I know there's been a question titled Crime Investigation in a fantasy world. My question is only partially similar to that, though. The problem: In a DnD3.x based world (including ...
6
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7answers
1k views

How to make skill use on investigations “important” but failure not derail the plot?

Well guys, following previous recommendations here I was able to build a Horror Themed Savage Worlds campaign that has made my players excited. However they're still getting used to the style, as well ...
14
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5answers
2k views

Murder mystery and high fantasy magic - how to make it work? [closed]

I am intending to have a murder mystery for my next game, set in a high fantasy setting in 13th Age. The setting we are playing in is very close to Eberron in tone, where magic is prevalent and powers ...
2
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2answers
3k views

Recommendations for murder mystery party

I want to run a murder mystery party. Basically, a party where, in addition to all the drinking and dancing, there's also a murder investigation LARP going on. At first, I was thinking of designing ...
11
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1answer
675 views

How do I teach my players to (covertly) gather intelligence?

In my Ars Magica game, the focus is on the "problem of the week." Given the capabilities of magi, once the problem is identified, it's generally solved with a spell or two. (Or the magi flat-out run ...
25
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10answers
3k views

Crime Investigation in a fantasy world [closed]

I am writing a campaign which relies heavily on crime: investigating it, clues, leads, witnesses, evidence, corruption, etc... The setting is fantasy, low-tech, and for the time being - let us leave ...
13
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6answers
4k views

What skill to use to determine cause of death and analyse wounds?

When running Pathfinder one of the players wanted his character to investigate how a walking corpse had originally died. This obviously calls for some skill check, as the task if far from easy (the ...
21
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6answers
467 views

How to fight the unseen, and still keep things interesting?

In a horror themed campaign with a Lovecraftian feeling, a big part of the game is a constant feeling of threat, but without any visual stimuli other than glimpses, or sounds vaguely heard of things ...
23
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4answers
2k views

Adventuring within Cthulhu Mythos without realizing it?

I intend to start a "Trail of Cthulhu" adventure or campaign, but I would like for the players not to initially know what they are going to be up against. So I would like to present it as a normal ...
5
votes
1answer
525 views

Running a mystery in Burning Wheel

As part of an ongoing "Uncampaign" (organized group play of many different systems, to get a feel for new and current trends), I'll be running a Burning Wheel game this weekend. Having only run ...
13
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6answers
753 views

Settings and game mechanics for Sherlock Holmes–inspired theme [closed]

We tried to organize an investigation-based campaign, and we used the D&D engine. Unfortunately, this engine is not suited for investigation. The Call of Cthulhu engine is better, but it's deeply ...