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Rialacha Teach Mhorgunna

Badges!!! ... Badges!!!

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We don't need no stinkin' badges!!!

Well ... you do in my campaign ... that is if you are entering into the City of Neverwinter. You see, in my other group, in an effort to control the rowdy bands of adventurers, the city government made them become licensed and join a guild.

... The ... <ahem> ... Adventurers League. (I hope I don't get a cease and desist letter over this!)

Anyway, each group must have a charter identified by a group name and symbol. Some simply wear cloth arm bands or such. However, as in all things, presentation becomes key. And your status as worthy heroes is measured in how valuable and gaudy your accouterments are. The second group, at present hails about half from this fair city ... the Wonder of the North ... and were so encouraged to form within the local proprieties. Jim came up with the name Filo Brague which as I understand it, translates as the "Rowdy Bunch."

As a reward for ridding the town of Phandelver of those dastardly Red Brands, I had the Blacksmith's son, an aspiring goldsmith, craft these badges. I had him chose the bear as a mascot because they have traveled with a dwarven druid, One Eyed Goggle Rocksplitter (Gundrins's Uncle) and his bear companion, Ursula.

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While I did this one, if some one in the player's group has artistic skill, they could be given the task to express themselves creatively. It is just one more detail of immersion to bring the world you are creating into believably. And if you as a DM are making maps in Photoshop ... you can do this, easy peasy, Doc and Sneezy. The same principals are applied. The badge's background ... it's the same pattern over lay that I use for a dungeon floor. You say you can't draw? Do what you do for your assets and find the image online and edit it in Photoshop. You don't own that program? Use another one. Anything with layers and filters should do the job. Shoot! Use Gimp! It's free.

It gives them a rallying point and a sense of belonging. Have crowds cheer their name and minstrels sing of them in song. You could ... if you feel so inclined ... use the power of Fantasy Grounds to make a decal of their logo and theme your game as THEIR game. It can also be a plot device as some one counterfeits their banner and besmirches their reputation. "Hey! Some guys wearing those badges caused a fight and destroyed my tavern ... you need to pay up and make restitution! ... Oh yeah ... one of you needs to marry my sister!" Besides that, it is something more to have them do with their gold pieces. You know it's just burning a hole in their pockets. What better way to impress the local bar maid at the corner pub.

" OOOOOH! Senior Paladeeen, what beeeeutiful bling! You surely can afford to buy me a drink if you wear such as that! A bottle of Remy Martin 1934, Barkeep!"

They can emblazon it on their shields and armor. They can work it into their clothing with gold thread. They can have it made into t-shirts.

Just one more thing to make it fun!

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Updated March 26th, 2017 at 01:45 by mhorgunn

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Comments

  1. dulux-oz's Avatar
    I'm big on Heraldry (there's a book manuscript lying around here somewhere... must get back to it...) and so I have my players' characters come up with "real" Heraldic Achievements (& make them pay the Houses of Heraldry for the "privilege"). Not only does it inspire all the good things Mhorgunn mentions above, but it really suits the FRPG "feel" to use "real" heraldry (the rules, not actual IRL Achievements).

    And drawing them is a snap - not only are there a plethora of free online programs (although a lot of them are terrible in following the "rules") but I also use CC3 (and other graphics packages) to draw them up.

    So yeah, get your players more into the game by awarding them "Achievements" other than just plain ol' gold
  2. Phystus's Avatar
    Great idea! Once they have their fancy badges, you can bring in a group of NPC's with even fancier badges. Presto, instant rivals! Love it!

    ~P
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