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hopesfirexx
09-08-2011, 01:16 AM
"King's Grace is busy as usual. Belias, the landlord, is busy boxing his boy's ears for trying to sneak a drink from the large barrels of ale behind the counter. Paying you no mind, a serving maid brushes past you as she delivers a bottle of fine wine to some extravagantly-dressed Seyonians. To your right, a circle of men are gambling, each with a small pile of silvers and coppers before them.
One of these men, a tall hume with long wavy hair and a scarlet cavalier hat, waves you down. He grins at you and indicates to an empty table near the corner of the room. He must be Sebastian, the informant Ayden spoke of."

I'm trying to mix up the type of social encounters my players engage in, so I devised a little tavern scenario. The players are trying to get information from him at the behest of the Brotherhood. Sebastian, however, has no loyalty to the aforementioned faction. He simply has information that the faction wants. He has an addiction with gambling, which will come up in a moment.
Instead of the classic "Send the Players on a Side Quest" or "Use Social Skill Checks to Force Him to Talk" scenarios, I decided on a gambling scenario. Players can attempt to gamble the information out of him (in fact, Sebastian suggests that the players do so).

I was thinking of actually playing a gambling game (with actual coins that I spray painted copper, silver, and gold). The problem is that I'm only decent at card games (I'm absolutely shameful at reflex games like Egyptian Ratscrew or Slapjack), and my luck with dice games is nothing short of awful. I have a rather good poker face, though.
It is an issue if all of the players are trying to take me on because I'll need a definite advantage over them. I was thinking that I would load some dice specifically for this encounter as a last resort (discovering that he's/I'm cheating is the trick to the encounter).
Any recommendations or ideas to help out? :D

cplmac
09-08-2011, 09:59 AM
You could go with that as the game that he was in when you found him. That way when the party figures out that he is cheating with loaded dice, they can get the information from him in exchange for not telling the other people that he had been gambling with of his loaded dice. Of course to help show this, you would need to have him have more coins in front of him when the party sees the gambling table. After all, he had been using those same dice while gambling with those other people.

wizarddog
09-08-2011, 10:18 AM
If the said NPC is addicted to gambling, chances are he's not very good at it..or at least, he is having a bad run that particular day. Instead of having the players play against him, they could be trying to help him win or at least bank him more money till he wins something.

cplmac
09-08-2011, 10:51 AM
You got me thinking, wizarddog. The NPC could actually be in debt to a couple of the other gamblers that have "loaned" him funds to continue gambling with. However, when the party arrives and he tries to leave the gambling table, the other gamblers won't let him leave until he is able to repay them what they have "loaned" him. Not just what he has borrowed during this game, but previous ones as well. This way the party can't just come in and slap some coins down on the table to cover what he has borrowed just at this gambling session. Like wizarddog said, he is having a run of bad luck and is addicted to gambling and will do anything to continue to play, even if it puts him further into debt.

hopesfirexx
09-08-2011, 11:23 PM
Eheheh, I feel like a bit of a goof for not realizing that one who is addicted to gambling would generally be very poor (unless they're professional, I suppose. Though "addicted" would be the wrong word in that situation.). I do like that scenario far better than my original idea, though.
I think I've decided on a game to play. http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dg/20070418a I'm playing as multiple players so I have a better chance of beating the party (at least, it will be difficult for them to simply gang up on me). I even have several giant stuffed animals I could place between the players to represent other people in the game. XD

nijineko
09-11-2011, 03:58 PM
i picked up the dragon ante and emperor's gambit decks, and even if i don't use them exactly rules-as-written, there are any number of gambling games that they can be used for, and at least the ambiance of the cards is right on.