Mystery Tips & Advice #2 Intrigue

In the first video, I talked about the Briefing, where you give the characters concrete facts to work with, and several avenues for them to explore.

Intrigue is a method where you insert an object or event into the mystery that should not be there. It could be a second flagon of ale on the table, when the victim was alone, or a mysterious guest at the tavern who no one knows or spoke to.

There is a common failsafe in mystery adventures for when the characters/players are floundering, you have the villain burst in, with gun drawn, and accuse the characters of getting too close. That has got many a GM out of a dead-end mystery adventure.

As a halfway house between throwing up the entire mystery and letting the players flounder is to inject an NPC into a scene. Maybe the players want to check the victim’s home one more time, but this time they see a black-garbed figure jump out of a window and run away. What have they taken from the scene? Who were they? New questions can spark life back into a mystery and a half-glimpsed license plate can give the characters a new lead.

Intrigue is a mystery within a mystery, but one you can throw into your investigative game as and when needed.

Easier Mystery Play is part of a series of GM Advice and Tips books available on DTRPG and Amazon. If you would like to get free solo rules, tips, advice and discounts on new books, you can join my mailing list.

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