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[+Rifts] Share Your Rifts Adventure & Campaign Scenarios!

Angel of the Dawn

Registered User
Validated User
I think it's fair to say Rifts is one of the most popular campaign settings ever. There's quite a bit of enthusiasm about the Rifts setting lately, with the Savage Rifts Kickstarter. But it's not like all of this interest simply appeared out of nowhere. Many of us have played Rift games, and probably many more of us have discussed it at length here and elsewhere. The Kickstarter has tapped into that latent momentum, and I think we're going to be seeing a lot of Rift games soon.

There are already several Rifts threads going on here, but I'd like to do something different with this one. I'm not really interested in discussing the mechanics, why the new rules would be better than old, or any of that. What I'm interested in is the core of every role playing game: the story. I'm interested in scenarios for Rifts, one shot adventures, miniseries-style story arcs, or full campaigns. Make it as setting agnostic as possible somebody should be able to take your great idea and run with it, no matter if they're using original Palladium Rifts or Savage Worlds, or some conversion using FATE or Pathfinder or whatever. I want to hear your ideas, and so does everyone else.

If your ideas don't fit neatly into the canon and based on homebrewed D-Bees or tech, that's fine. If you're entirely unfamiliar with the setting but have a general and vague idea of what it's about, and you have ideas, please share those too. Anyone can participate, as long as they're not bitching about MDC or rules stuff or whatever; there are countless other threads for that.

I'll share some of my own scenarios later, but I'm more interested in yours. So I'll shut up already so you can post your stuff. :)
 

Blackwingedheaven

Crystal Human
Validated User
A small town has recently been suffering raids by a tribe of simvan monster hunters. The reptilian D-Bees used to be uninterested in the town-dwellers, preferring to do their hunting and raiding elsewhere, but recent Coalition movements in the tribe's traditional hunting grounds leaves them little choice but to find new ranges. This particular tribe's previous hunting grounds were good enough that they didn't engage in cannibalism, like some simvan are known to do, but that might well change once the town runs out of things to steal and herd animals to eat. The town needs to hire a band of mercenaries to drive off or destroy the simvan, but the simvan aren't evil--just prideful, desperate, and a little violent. Can the heroes find a way for the two groups to coexist, or will they just blast their way to a solution favoring one side or the other?

I actually ran this particular adventure a while back, including a human child the simvan had adopted that they named "Pinky."
 
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Icarium

Registered User
Validated User
A Phase World scout vessel enters a strange wormhole, perhaps due to a broken drive if it's got one of those magitech drives. It crash lands in Coalition territory. Now creatures used to a relatively benevolent society have to deal with the Coalition. Do they flee? Do they try to develop their own place? Do they try to get home? :)
 

gtroc

Jacob Possin
Validated User
A small town of Lizard Ranchers in Montana must face a terrible new threat from beyond the rifts. All the while the Coalition is putting pressure on the town to exile the Dbees and magic users in town. If they would just do that then the Coalition can send in support to deal with the threat. The PCs must help the people survive and navigate the treacherous political waters of a city under siege.
 

king_kaboom

Benevolent Overlord
Validated User
Here are a few I've worked out or run:

Chainsaw
The players will have awoken in their new bodies to find themselves pressed into service as slave 'borgs on a logging crew. They have no idea where they are and only remember being hit over the back of the head a while ago. The overseer of the logging crew is well armed and has two assistants that watch the crew to make certain that nobody gets any bright ideas. The 'borg bodies that they are inhabiting either have no vocal circuits or they have been disabled and the overseer has a control that can cause pain to or immobilize one or all of the cyborgs. The players will have one very large and very powerful chainsaw for every two of them (3d6 MD, powered off the borg's internal power supply, requires PS 28 to use). Members of the crew without a chainsaw are responsible for loading the harvested wood onto trucks.

How will the players escape? How will they be able to formulate a plan when they can't communicate with each other? Considering that illiteracy is pretty common, only about half of them should be able to read. Will they be able to communicate without being seen though? Even after they escape, where are they? Can they find their way back to civilization? After they do and have time to lament the loss of their bodies will they be able to keep their sanity?

This game is pretty well suited for a one-shot, but for the right group it could be an excellent set-up for a campaign.

King of the Road
Post apocalyptic North America is mostly uninhabited. Settlements are spread across the continent with great distances between them. For the smaller settlements, self-sufficiency is an option, but larger cities like Chi-Town and Ishpeming must rely on trade to support their populations. Trade made possible by Road Kings; huge armored trucks that transport tons of cargo across the badlands. The drivers of these vehicles and their mercenary escorts brave all manner of hostile DBs, raiders, and treacherous terrain.

King of the Road will be a series that follows the adventures of one of these crews as they transport a load of freight from Ishpeming to the Pecos Empire. This game would necessarily be fairly linear in it's composition and the GM could attempt to run it as completely episodic; beginning and ending an adventure each session.

Khol's Machine
Dr. Meyer Kohl has developed the hyper-interface, an advanced version of the symbiotic link used in power armor and other robotic vehicles. His work promises to further enhance the capabilities of skilled pilots and give the Coalition the ultimate edge against the alien menace that threatens our borders. Unfortunately Dr. Kohl and his body guard have both vanished with all of his data, and the the rest of his research team has been murdered.

What happened to Dr. Kohl? Was he kidnapped? Vaporized? Did he defect for moral reasons? Is he trying to sell his invention to another power? This story can also go several different ways depending on how the players want to go at it. They could be CS operatives attempting to track down Dr. Kohl while determining whether he is a defector, or they could be a group of mercenaries contracted to act as local guides and specialists, or they could have heard of the incident through gossip channels.

Mystery of the Miasma
While traveling between points A and B the characters encounter a small town that appears to solely inhabited by insane people that start throwing themselves on the the character's APC. One of the characters opens a hatch to shoot at or otherwise dislodge some of the crazy people who have climbed on to the hull. While the players are fighting off these poor bastards, and probably killing a few of them, a man in environmental armor steps out of an ally pointing a device at the crowd. They disperse quickly and attempts to contact the characters via the radio, warning them no to open the hatch.

The man in the armor is a rogue scientist named Ronald Nemo. He is studying the disease that the characters have just been exposed to and he thinks he has found the source. He has found a bunker several miles away that the townspeople appear to have unearthed and opened, no doubt hoping to salvage some pre-rifts tech hidden within. Ronald thinks that he can cure the disease if he can get a sample of the pure strain.

What else is hidden in the bunker though? Security androids? Mutants? Perhaps it's occupied by the descendants of a military unit that went underground when the bombs went off? Could be most anything. It is Rifts after all.

Randy O'Leary's Robotic Ranger
Randy O'leary is 14. That's not so uncommon. The world's full of wandering kids who ain't got nothin' or nobody. Randy O'leary is special though. An alien machine fell out of the sky in front of him. The pilot, some six armed insect like monster lived just long enough to attach a probe to the back of Randy's skull. This implant links his brain to the machine's AI, granting him control of it's movements. The AI is slowly learning to communicate through the implant with Randy, and he's starting to realize that the robot has tremendous powers that he hasn't even begun to tap. If he can keep it long enough he might even learn how to use them.

What do the players do when they encounter Randy clumsily fighting off a small group of bandits? Who is Randy working for now? Is he under the influence of a righteous person? Or has he become the pawn of a warlord? Will they try to help Randy or will they try to take his robot from him?

I would probably try to sell this as a character concept to one of the players, and let them stat it up as a 1st level Vagabond with Robot Combat Basic and not a lot else in the way of technological savvy. That would open up other story ideas such as, where did the robot come from, is anybody looking for it, what powers does it actually possess, what kind of havoc will learning them cause, how will they get such an alien device repaired etc.

Running with the Pack
Surrounding the mighty fortress city of Chi-Town for many miles in all directions are the ‘Burbs. Three and a half million lives huddled at the foot of the Coalition’s capital. These wretches occupy a legal gray area. They are tolerated by the Coalition because they represent a steady source of recruits for its armies and subjects for its laboratories. They have no rights though, and at any moment the occupants of the city can rain fire down upon them. In the 294 years since the great cataclysm, the inhabitants of Chi-Town have used military force to scour away the ‘Burbs many times over. Even today, in 105 PA, entire districts are culled given the slightest provocation. And yet, the oldest ‘Burbs have stood nearly a century and every day more people seek the protection that the fortress city offers.

The ‘Burbs are vast and harbor the enemies of mankind. Hidden among the multitudes are D-Bees, creatures of magic, magic users, and other threats. All that prevents these monsters from destroying the Coalition is you. You are the Coalition’s shield and sword. You stand against the chaos of the world and seek out those that would cause your city harm. You are members of the Internal Security Specialists.

I've run this one a couple times using a pack of pregenerated Dog Boys and a Psi-Stalker, but any Coalition character could work for it. With the psychics, it plays a lot like a television police procedural drama. Their powers serve as a fast means of feeding them clues that move their investigation forward.

Symbiosis
You march among these pure men and women. Paragons of the human race, hand picked to do the good work. Your elite team fights on the frontier of the Coalition bringing death to the impure and alien.

One day on patrol with your squad you are overwhelmed by a strange weapon. It is not designed to kill, but rather to incapacitate. Your squad is gathered up by the filthy alien hands of unspeakable monsters. Stripped of your armor and clothing you are examined, then the monstrous beings bring forth a small creature about the size of a football. You want to recoil in horror as they place it on your chest and you want to scream as it sprouts tentacles that burrow into your flesh, but you can neither move to make a sound. Mercifully you lose consciousness.

You awaken in a cell with several other members of your squad. Each has been horribly disfigured, alien parts grafted to their flesh. Without warning there is a tremendous explosion that rocks the cell, throwing you violently to the floor. The door has been torn free and a gaping hole has been blown in the side of the vehicle. Without hesitation your squad members take the opportunity and flee. Only fleeting glimpses behind you reveal the three spider walkers that have assaulted the strange floating ship that your captors fight back from.

A day later your squad finally comes to a stop. Resting next to a small stream you must decide what to do next.

This scenario has a lot of potential as a story of moral growth. A group of deeply indoctrinated racists suddenly finds themselves on the wrong side of their own beliefs. The player characters have had several alien symbionts (see World Book 2: Atlantis and World Book 21: Splynn Dimensional Market) grafted to them, granting them an array of supernatural abilities. How will they react? Will the players return home? They are no longer strictly human and in most cases not able to pass for human. They know better than most that the Coalition is not friendly towards nonhumans. Rumors regarding dissection and vivisection will come up. They will find themselves unable to remove the symbionts without risking death. Will they attempt to seek help?

The Professionals
Little Jenny Starkweather is an innocent 12 year old girl with a dirty face and skinned knees. Little Jenny has lost her mother and father though. Mean dog-men in black armor came and took them all away and there was nothing she could do about it. Momma had done her best to hide her in the back of the house behind some bushel baskets, but they found her just the same. She'll never forget how the man with the spiked helmet had looked at her before calling her a flat-scan and moving on.

Little Jenny Starkweather has attached herself to the group. She wants to learn how to fight so one day she can rescue her mom and dad from the Coalition States psychic detention center. This scenario is best suited to people that want to be heroes. How far will you go though? Will you take on the girl and show her what she wants to know? Or will you go that extra mile and find where the Starkweathers are being detained? Will you save the family? Or will you attempt to free all of the psychic mutants imprisoned in the camp?

Depending on the strategy that the players choose this could be a very short game, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. This storyline might also turn up in another game, like King of the Road.
 

Lord Stilt-Man

Incomplete Bastard
Validated User
I outlined my general ideas in a thread I've long since misplaced. Which is a shame because people were awesome at helping to flesh it out.

I've always wanted to Rifts up my local area, so since I live on England's south coast I'd do something with that. So I'd start my players in the small refuge of Scrag End a typical Rifts English village around a 19th century church that survived entirely untouched, yet barring all attempts to enter it. It was held to be sacred so while over time many have migrated away from the area a core of pilgrims have stayed to tend to the Church in the ways they were able.

Scrag End falls within the territory of The Saints a firm of cybered up former Murderball fans. They have one Pristine Murderball certified juicer rig that they get adjusted to whomever becomes the new boss. They patrol an area roughly half of the old city urban area. Taking tithe but also defending their people from capricious fae and worse.

It is said they used to have ancient rivals nearby. But nothing has been heard of them in quite some time. This has emboldened the Saints who went over to loot some of the 'good stuff' said to be left there from the golden age. But the people they send aren't coming back. No longer willing to risk their best boys they gather up a large travelling group of serfs from their entire protectorate and pack them off with all manner of promises for their families should they live or die.

It's not a great choice, but for many young men and women seeing their loved ones cared for in perpetuity is worth a certain death. Should the impossible happen and they live AND uncover golden age treasure it would change everything. Not just for themselves but all the villages in the protectorate... death's the worst that could happen... right?


ETA- having just seen the Murder Wraith preview I can definitely see using the Saints' latest boss heading that way rather than accepting his fate.
 
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Angel of the Dawn

Registered User
Validated User
I really like a lot of these, and I plan to use some of them (actually a lot of them) in an upcoming Rifts campaign that I'm considering. Thanks, all. :)
 

vernuf

Registered User
Validated User
It started with rumors of people going missing, but the world's a dangerous place after all. People disappear all the time. Then it was entire towns and even small cities. You ran into someone claiming to have escaped one of those incidents. They came from the north and the sky. He said they looked human, but they were stronger and tougher than humans and they used magic and strange technology alike. Maybe you investigated then or not, but either way, you heard more stories. The details weren't always the same except that they always came from the north and the sky and looked human. And they always took people alive if they could. Sometimes they were heard to speak some language the survivor didn't recognize. And sometimes the attack began with the dead rising.

Either way, you found yourself near the warzone between Free Quebec and the Coalition. You had hunkered down into hiding when patrols from both sides ran into each other. And then it happened. Zombies swarmed over them and you heard a shrill whine from the north before a group of men and women, taller than the human average landed smoothly on the ground. Who knows how because there didn't seem to be any robotics or vehicles. A few minutes later, it was over and a ship... one that looked like an ancient sailing ship... came from the sky and was loaded with the survivors of both sides.

Some time later when you were telling the story, a man covered in tattoos kept asking about details. All he said when asked about his interest was, "Thuleans. They're back."
 
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Lord Stilt-Man

Incomplete Bastard
Validated User
Everyone's ideas are awesome. King Kaboom especially is a font of great stuff. But since I doubt anyone else in this thread has any intention for a British game I won't dig further into stuff I'd do.

I Hate All Life, I'm looking forward to hearing your ideas :)
 

wanderduff

Registered User
Validated User
Well, I'm minded to set up a British game once the savage version comes out. I was going to base the heroes at a rebuilt Houseteads (a fort on the Roman Wall).

Newcastle to be a port where traders from the NGR/Triax come to sell their wares.
Slave raids a constant threat from London of Splynn and contradictory reports of what this New Camelot stands for.
 
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