The Scars section of Artifacts (p.24-41) provides tools for building cohesive player character groups. It also describes how player characters of the same Cult can come together as a group. Taking Scars as a start point, this and other Cult Campaign Seeds posts explore ideas for campaigns built around a single Cult.
The aim is to provide gamemasters with ideas that can be expanded, grafted into other campaign seeds, or otherwise altered as needed. With that in mind, here are some ideas for Hellvetic groups.
It’s no secret that Commander Torani considers your company the best in his battalion. And it is well-known that your section is the best in the battalion. It’s also clear to anyone paying attention that the four of you constitute the best team in the section.
You are young and motivated. You came up through basic training together, competing against each other to see who could run fastest, climb highest, jump furthest. In training missions you stopped at nothing to be the best. On every assignment you have exceeded expectations.
So you’re certainly not malcontents. But Torani is clever. He has given you an important mission, one in which you’ll act as disgruntled soldiers. Someone has been operating in the cantons, somehow getting their hands on ammo, grenades, gas masks, and other gear from Hellvetic stores, which they then transport north to the Protectorate for sale to the highest bidder.
Your new assignment places you on patrol duty in a canton known to be home to a contingent of Night Thrushes, an Apocalyptic flock known primarily for whoring and narcotics distribution. You are to get close to the Night Thrushes and pretend to be unhappy with your patrol duties and resentful of Hellvetic life. In addition to making contact with the Night Thrushes, you are to keep your eyes open for other buyers.
When approached, you’ll sell a few boxes of ammo and grenades, each fitted with a hidden tracker beacon. Commander Torani will monitor their movement from Headquarters, then send in a squad at just the right time to swoop in and bag the buyers. Interrogation of the buyers should in due time reveal the identities of the Hellvetics who have been selling them gear. After demonstrating your loyalty by undertaking such a challenging assignment for Torani, the sky will be the limit for your team.
Characters with the Concepts of Mentor, Protector, Martyr, and Healer have Affinity with this group, while Aversion greets those with Abomination and Ruler Concepts.
Death or Glory
Brechler started it. You were limping through the Purgan mud, every one of you bruised and bleeding, lucky to be alive. The Psychokinetic’s attack had killed everyone else in the squad. “Look,” Brechler said, “guarding caravans, watching the alpine passes – all of that is bullshit. The Broken Cross fanatics and Baldies may be nuts, but thats’ only because they see the truth. There’s only one fight that really matters, and that’s killing fucking Psychonauts.”
You all nodded silently. He was saying what you all believed, what you all knew to be true. But how could you go after Psychonauts and still remain Hellvetics?
All credit to Graf, that weasely motherfucker. He used his wiles on an ops desk warrior and got you all assigned to a hiring hall in Perugia. Sure enough, after a few weeks a big shot Neolibyan named Ifa swept in with his entourage. “I am on a hunting trip,” he said. “I hear that west of the Apennines there are many Psychokinetics.” Talk about understatement.
He had a band of Scourgers with him, but wanted some additional muscle to keep the locals off his back. You jumped at the opportunity. Brechler put it this way: “Sure, we’ll be looking out for Leperos and hostile Purgans, but I guarantee you we’ll get the opportunity to take on a Psychokinetic or two. And who knows – if we do good work for this guy, maybe he’ll pay us to go on Psychonaut hunts in Balkhan and Pollen. Plus, we’re getting paid, so the Alpine Fortress is getting their coin and we get a toe in the real fight.”
You are not destined to guard trade caravans; you are destined for more. Much more.
Characters with the Concepts of Seeker, Chosen, Zealot, and Martyr have Affinity with this group, while Aversion greets those with Traveler and Adventurer Concepts.
For months you’ve been pulling guard duty at a radio retransmission site in the North Purgan hills. Monotony is too tame a word for the feeling of suffocating boredom that hits you every time you wake up for another shift. Perimeter patrol. Guard post. Radio monitoring. Weapon maintenance. Bland food. A shot of distillate. Bitch and moan with your teammates about how you’ll never move up the ranks if you never get the chance to stand out. Sleep. Repeat.
Then from out of nowhere you get an encrypted text message – orders to pull down the retrans gear and head to Lucatore, a half-day’s march south. Apparently something bad happened there and HQ requires an immediate presence in the town. The situation is so sensitive that the message doesn’t give you any details about exactly what went down, but it does emphasize discretion. Keeping trade routes open, making sure the White Wolf of Bergamo doesn’t sink his fangs into Lucatore, and preserving the peace are imperative.
You’re the closest Hellvetic presence, you’ve been there before, and you know a few of the locals – at least the ones that hang out at the Bleeding Ram. It occurs to you that you’re not the best team for the task – you’re all relatively junior, and you’re walking into a politically-charged situation. But you’re in the right place at the right time, and you’re all hungry to prove yourselves. Finally you get the opportunity to demonstrate that your deeds can match your ambition.
Characters with the Concepts of Creator, Conqueror, Visionary, and Ruler have Affinity with this group, while Aversion greets those with Defiler and Traditionalist Concepts.