The Treasure Hunter: What motivates them to do what they do?

I’m still hung up on this Treasure Hunter class for Mazes & Perils. Last time we talked about one way to create some possible plots around treasure. This time I want to talk a bit about what drives these characters (possibly) to do what they do. I suspect each is motivated in a slightly different way.

Let’s talk about a few of those ways here…

  • Greed – Always a powerful motivator, the payday is a great way to ensure that they keep the prize in sight. You might ask why they’re so eager to collect coins… Is it so they can binge on wine, women (or men), and song to forget their troubles? If so, what are they trying to forget?
  • The Chase – The thrill of the hunt is another great motivator. Finding clues. Evading capture. Locating and finally securing the item. All of these bring a rush of adrenaline. Can you keep the need for such thrills going by raising the stakes time and time again?
  • Mentors – Someone, perhaps a parent or teacher, may have instilled a deep need to find things. Perhaps they like puzzles. Perhaps they’re carrying on the family tradition. What about their mentor drives them on? And is that mentor still alive?
  • Guilt – At some point, the hunter did something that they regret. Maybe they sacrificed a partner to keep themselves alive. Maybe they double-crossed a source. Maybe they ended up stealing from the wrong people. Whatever the source, they now have a need to balance the books.
  • The Goal – Some hunters are driven by that one particular goal. Maybe they’re trying to collect all the pieces of a certain ancient artifact. Maybe they’re trying to locate the lost brotherhood of knights who tried to hide a magical item away from the world. Maybe they’re looking for proof that something — or someone — exists…

Whatever the motivation is, as the GM it’s good to find ways to keep them interested. Dangle the carrot. Give them pieces of a mystery to gather over the course of a campaign. But keep them going. You never know what’s around the next corner or at the bottom of that ruined temple…

What other motivations can you come up with? Have you used any in your own campaigns?

 

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