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emo samurai
Do you have Guardian on the Threshold go "I'm sorry, Mr. Mage, but your metaphysical truth is in another Citadel," or do you have something deeper?
Personally, I like a detailed narrative to a metaplanar quest. Of course, this takes more time and should ideally be handled in a 1-1 session with the GM if that can be arranged.

For example: A fine day in the metaplane.
I once run a mage initiation to be a quest in the metaplanes. The metaplane in question was similar to the carraibian pirates of the renaissance era. The quest was about the mage being forced to find a kid that was supposed to be his own. The kid was captured by a governor that kept him in prison.

That was a nice swashbuckling adventure but with magic. ^_^
emo samurai
That was quite a righteously awesome metaplanar quest.

And how WOULD he have done it better? The quest, I mean? I think one of the things that was supposed to be shown by the choice in healing at the end was that his desire to protect his pack, which he KNOWS in this case is illogical, will hurt not only him but those he wishes to protect. Be I correct? I believe so. The hermetic may have been able to save the man, but simply to protect his personal honor, he sacrificed the old man's life. If it's something subtle like this, then your GM r00x0rz.

And how does the Dweller handle questions? I know he's good at asking them; how good is he at answering?
Blaze failed the quest because he shot a full 6D healing spell on the one subject, which saved Jimmy but quite rightly knocked Blaze cold from the drain.
If he'd been less impulsive he could've hit Jimmy with a 1D heal, which would've stabilised him and let him live, if in a badly wounded state, then gone on to do the same for the hermetic as well. The lesson there is just because you have almighty power it doesn't mean it's always a good idea to use it at full whack.
That was Blaze's mistake. His player's mistake was assuming, as you seem to have, that it was an either/or situation, when actually there was a way to save both.
If Blaze had used the two lesser castings he would've been able to move on to the next Place (my GM had planned for Blaze to face the Place of Battle as well), and if he'd cleared that then the quest would've been passed. As it is I've had to do our latest run without my faithful ally spirit, and boy was that painful at times. I've missed having her cast that initiative boosting spell Blaze taught her.
So what could've been a *rolls dice* "Place of battle, roll your astral combat skill" yawnfest turned instead into an enjoyable 'bonus' gaming session and an opportunity for character development that carried repercussions back into the campaign. As well as completing this last run without his ally, Blaze has also had to cope with the lingering wounds from the injuries he sustained on the metaplane. Thank goodness Dr Bob's shadow clinic is generous with the painkillers.
emo samurai
I forgot about the 6D healing. I thought he just cast a dinky healing spell.
The Stainless Steel Rat
QUOTE (emo samurai)
And how does the Dweller handle questions? I know he's good at asking them; how good is he at answering?

In my games he rarely answers anything - and when he does the answers are cryptic and evasive. The answers are found in the Citadel, if you're lucky enough to get there.

I haven't had the chance to run many metaplanar quests. In my last campaign a free spirit used Astral Gateway to toss the whole team into the metaplanes. Each charater had a 'chapter' to themselves that forced them to examine how far they were willing to push themselves during their quest to save a teammate, with a little introspection regarding their preconcieved notions along the way.

One PC, a sorcery adept, was in the process of being corrupted by a shadow free spirit in the meat world who had given him a "gift" of knowledge regarding the use of blood magic. Wisely, he had refrained from using the 'dark arts' for well over a dozen games sessions, but in the Place of Magic he was put in a position where he was compelled to sacrifice a young girl for the power needed to save a villiage. The girl knowingly volunteered to put herself under his knife, but he agonized over the choice anyway - knowing the cost to his sanity, and possibly his soul.

Another PC who was hunting his father (a dirty manipulative bastard who had corrupted his mother and abandoned him as a child, then attempted to murder him as an adult years later) was sent to the Place of Charisma, where he had to confront just how much like his father he had become.

Ah, good times...
emo samurai
Cool... so metaplanar quests are almost always special and weird? Because from what I heard in other threads, people regularly undertake such quests regularly in order to do everyday things like learning and designing spells...
The Stainless Steel Rat
From what I understand, metaplanar quests are whatever you want them to be for whatever purpose is needed for the story.

But in my opinion? Yeah, the weirder the better.
emo samurai
I think I've mentioned this before, but I have a nasty habit of running meta-planar quests based off of TV game shows, the game depends on the place. It provides a nice humorous absurdist break from the streets. I've done them other ways, but this tends to be my favorite. I've also been known to break out the board games for tests just to emphasize how different the metaplanes are sometimes.
QUOTE (stevebugge)
I've also been known to break out the board games for tests just to emphasize how different the metaplanes are sometimes.

Oooh! It would be so cool to work Monopoly into a metaplanar quest somehow.

"The time of reckoning is at hand, child: now you must pay or perish....You owe me 625 dollars."
"What? You're trying to rip me off here!"
"Lies! The hand of Fate has placed you upon the Place of Saint James, where three of my houses rest-"
"Yeah, which means I pay you 450! Check the deed, drekhead!"
"Foolish whelp! You shall suffer great pain for your insolence and--oh, you're right, it is 450."
"Damn straight."

And so on.
emo samurai
Or Settlers of Catan

"Do you trade brick to the Dweller?"
"No. I do however build a road all the way to the Citadel. Longest road me."
"You have 10 victory points; you learn force 6 Invisible Hand of the Marketplace."
I have done all of the above. I had a player go on an unannounced quest, and that was just dice rolls.
Conversly, I ran a game that closed a 3 year story (and subsequently killed off a NPC fixer I had been giving all my players) at a convention, that was noting but a long astral quest. The palace of wisdom was great. I handed them an electronic puzzle game and left the table.

Besides, the dweller isnt that bad, he just spills your darkest secrets...
emo samurai
Oh, then that's okay. And if you want to know your darkest secrets, then that's really okay.

And what I love about the game is the perfect veneer of civility the game creates that covers up just how cutthroat the game is.

I mean, it's not like Monopoly where the sole purpose of the game is to steal from everybody else. At most, you'll have maybe 10% of your resources stolen over the course of the game, and the soldier card is a silly dude with a musket. Nobody fears muskets, but everybody fears debt, which doesn't exist in this game. Instead, you build roads to block each other off and trade with each other, often favorably towards the other dude if it's your turn.
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