Opinions on this plot general outline:
>World has relatively low planar contact, what there is proves extremely dangerous and intermittent
>The world is slowly dying for various reasons
>PCs participate in the political machinations surrounding a parliament trying to decide on a plan to survive the end of the world
>Progressive faction keeps pushing for more extreme measures
>Measures include citizens being sent to work camps and shit
>Reveal is that they are trying to get off plane and the only place they think they can get to is the abyss
>Working with a third party gifted wizard who thinks he can manage the planar travel
>Leader believes this is the best chance they have, as life in the abyss is preferable to complete annihilation
>The work camps were for sacrifices/experiments
>Their leader is a demoniac
>Second reveal is that the third party is actually a demon who was stuck on the prime when the plane got cut off
>The experiments are producing actual demons, corrupting mortal souls into terrible creatures
>Final reveal is the demon is using sacrifices to try and send only himself back, he is using the sacrifices to empower himself to rip a hole back
>Doesn't work, he really is stuck on the prime
So, thoughts on this? How would you feel as a player?
What can the players do? Seems like they don't have a lot of agency in the matter. No matter what they do, the demon is still going to try and fail at this thing. What's the point of playing?
The leader isn't a bad person, he's just in a bad situation and trying his best.
The demon however is a bad person.
Generally this is an outline of events, hell the players are within their rights to just leave. Normally however, as a GM I find that most players actually want to follow a plot. If you present a path people generally follow it.
Besides, these aren't even hard A to B to C, they are facts about what is happening.
Also, they may prevent the demon from even trying, who knows. Then they'll never know he would have failed anyway. They may never find out about the demon and stop it before it progresses that far.
OP here, everyone seems to have a very strict definition of railroading. What I have is an outline, not even events, just things that could be true. Hell, the players may never find out all the things, they may leave.
What I have found is most people don't purposefully try and skip out halfway through events. Most folks want to see the thing through to it's end. However, the players may do well and prevent things before they progress to the point the demon tries to hop planes.
What I don't understand is what about this is railroading. Like the fact the leader is a demoniac, or that the work camps are for sacrifices/experiments. How is that railroading players?
The only assumption I can find is that the players are participating in the political games and that they go after this particular group of people. That is in the base concept of the plot. If they don't do that then none of it matters. Not like I can just force them to care.
The issue I have with it, I can't speak for the others, is that it seems like the party isn't really able to do anything to change the outcomes. If they save people from the camps those people will die when the world ends if they don't stop the demon nothing is really that different, and finally no matter what they do the world is still ending.
Wait I don't understand. Having a setting with a dying world means it's railroading?
I mean, this particular plan by this one group failed, it's not like there is no hope.
>If they save people from the camps those people will die when the world ends if they don't stop the demon nothing is really that different, and finally no matter what they do the world is still ending.
It's not like it's a fast death scenario. The world is ending in terms of centuries, not years or days. This is only one plot thread in a wider story as well.
One group's plan failed. It doesn't mean that there is no chance. This is actually part of a wider plot anyway that leads to eventual salvation, but that's too far in the future to have anything approaching concrete plans about.
>The world is ending in terms of centuries, not years or days.
Then why are people making decisions that make it seem like it is. Very few people would leave their world to go to hell unless they really were immediate danger. People don't usually worry about things unless it is effecting them directly. The would probably be suppressing evidence that the world is ending right now and the party would have to be doing what they could to stop the disaster while dealing with people in power ignoring or actually arresting or trying to kill them.
See, that's why these guys are painted as bad guys. They're taking extreme measures and killing off portions of the populous (actually a necessary measure because they can't be supported food wise any longer). Others have longer term plans, some are accepting the end as a matter of course, and more. The political landscape is complex and this progressive faction makes up a portion of it.
The government the PCs are dealing with do suppress information, and has numerous factions each proposing different plans to try and reverse the effects of the world ending (because some of them may live to see the end due to being elven, or at least their children will see it).
The issue is it's impossible to hide the world is ending, merely how quickly. Even within the lifespan of humans the world is becoming measurably less inhabitable.