I think thats the ying to my yang. I was approaching it from the execution side. If you are going to be evil - earn it. Steep yourself in your choices and they are made. Play the game again if you dont want your game to be lived out relatively evil. But none of the accidental, "hey I didnt think it would go this far" kind of movie evil where you suddenly try to back out. Conscious choices.
What you bring up is the motivation to do so in the first place other than a person sitting at their computer, brushing off the Salsa Verde Tostitos Rounds crumbs from their Mass Effect N7 hoodie (this got oddly specific) and saying "Guess Ill go evil this time". its going to be hard to narratively make the case for evil. Evil almost always has a built in blind side, a singular focus, an obeisance to something else. Its hard to have a full-witted character just be like "Yeah, but did you see those tiaras everyone gets?". The only thing that is even remotely interesting about it is Minthara, and my first playthrough she was caught up in the slaughter with my no questions asked, no answers given scorch the earth policy towards the goblins. Diamonds in the rough, glimmers of possibility...just doesnt work.
Matt Colville said it in one of his "running the game" videos (hes a video game designer, writer for Wotc & Critical role, wrote his own D&D book, and hosts his own liveplay D&D) that as a DM one of the biggest mistakes you can make is to make this amazing world, all these super cool NPCs, theres all this lore, the people have stories and quests and ahhh! its so cool! And then what happens? Game night comes. They get beer in the tavern and head out in the morning for the woods. You get mad at them for not taking an interest in your world.
So what happened? The world isn't alive for them the way it is for you. They get pictures, flashes, vignettes. If you describe three average looking people and an odd little man with a stick - dont be surprised if they dont latch onto that. It sounds like just that - a funny old man with a stick, why would they talk to him?
To make these worlds work you have to have the NPCs go to them. I implemented this system awhile ago and my god the difference in how much fun both me and the players have. There are tons of organic ways to start a conversation with a group that looks like you do. Right now the areas are the areas, there are roads connecting them, and there are people you can talk to or not and then some forced mainline stuff you dont have a choice with. Thats it. Players aren't given the right of refusal, theyre being required to dredge up people to talk to and piece together reasons they might care. Hand choices to them on a platter - a la the devil - and they can refuse. Yeah, find stuff on your own, but the really interesting stuff - that comes to you and has some good reasons why its interesting.
Last edited by Orbax; 16/10/20 08:13 PM.