|Deckplans, Floorplans And Assorted Diagrams|
One type of thing that is pretty much at the core of all roleplaying scenarios, in
my opinion, is plans and maps. Plans and maps give detail and solidity to a
For example, if you (the PCs) are trying to break into a natural history museum to steal an item from the "small furry mammals" gallery, the scenario feels more real if the GM has actually got a plan of the museum.
WITH THE PLAN
The players break into the museum. If they have done the research and know the layout they will swiftly get to the right location.
If they have not done the research they will spend a longish period of time exploring the museum.
WITHOUT THE PLAN
GM: Okay, you find a window... like somewhere round the side. Make your security role to break in without triggering the alarm.
PLAYER: [Rolls] 12. Made it.
GM: Okay you go in... you spend a little time wondering around... and then you find the gallery.
PLAYER: We'll grab the gizmo and go back to the window.
Spot the difference? Without a plan or a map, everything seems vague and unreal. As players, you have the feeling that it doesn't matter which road you go down, or which door you go through, because they all lead to the same place.
Because they don't lead anywhere. They're not real.
So What Is The Purpose Of This Article?
A really good scenario has loads of floorplans, of buildings, ships, planes and so on. Some might be floorplans of actual real buildings in our world (like the White House say). Others might just be generic fictional ones (such as a large house).
The Internet ought (you'd think) to be a good place to find floorplans. After all, practically everything else is there.
You'd find a floorplan of some museum somewhere, and could then write a scenario around it. Never again would you have to spend ages with a pencil and squared paper, you'd just print off a plan, add a few annotations, and away you go.
However, when I've tried to look, I've found it's not actually that easy, because the plans aren't grouped together.
(There's no menu in Yahoo called Plans and Floorplans).
So it seemed a good idea to see if we could put together a good collection of links that GMs could use as a resource. I was greatly helped in this task by some of the people on our old chat mailing list, who contributed most of the links in the list. A lot of thanks to them.
If any of you reading this know of any good floorplan links, then please send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'm particularly interested in plans of trains, ships and airships. If we get more links we'll do a Floorplans II article next issue.
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