Legwork Guide

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NEW: Legwork Workshop 1 (Legworks, When, Where, How, and Why to do It, and Legworking with Your Martial PC)

Legwork: A Mini-Guide for Players

Legwork is similar to sitting down with your GM at tabletop and saying, "Those goblins were really suspicious. Can I find out more about that?" It is primarily a conversation with your GM. Have you ever wanted to...?

  • Look into the bad guy's organization!
  • Follow-up on a rumor!
  • Gather information about that villain!
  • Let staff know what you’ll be doing in response to a situation and/or plot?

Legwork does all of these things. It is increasingly important the higher level you are. A final combat may only be 10% of the adventure. You may never find the ultimate dragon horde without legwork!

How do I do it?


1. What are you wanting to accomplish? This helps staff understand your goals, so open with this.
2. How is the PC trying to accomplish these goals? For example:
Example: Going to a tavern to encourage anti-Dranei sentiment
Example: Speaking with your contacts about the things they know about (see the influence and organization RPP spends!)
Example: Speaking with the tavern owner whose house was recently burned down.

Can I have an example?

===============================| View Job 63 |===============================
   Bucket: LEG                              Due On: Sat Aug 15 06:51:02 2015
    Title: Investigating the woods     Assigned To: OtyughHugger
Opened On: Tue Aug 11 06:51:02 2015         Status: Yellow 
Opened By: Grubbar
Grubbar added on Tue Aug 11 06:51:02 2015: 

Grubbar overheard some of the Dranei threatening to start a riot at the 
Dragon's Den. Not wanting to see violence break out (that he didn't start), 
Grubbar would like to inform the owners ahead of time. After, he'd like to 
find out what he can about them, and if they were hired. To do this, he'd 
like to confer with other local guides and see if any of them were hired 
lately, to show the Dranei local hunting spots, and so on. If they had, 
what can they tell him about the visitors? Did they say anything while 
drunk? What coinage did they pay in?

He has Influence among the local druid's union, and would like to use this 
to contact local guides.


Are things I shouldn't do?

  1. Forget that Tenebrae is a team game.
  2. Demand scenes from the DM (they may be busy or have a lot on their plate; or, the LEG may not need one in the greater scheme of things).
  3. Forget to state your goals.
  4. Forget that skills like diplomacy and intimidate are useful, but not cure-alls. Someone threatened with intimidate is likely to report it, and diplomacy is more limited than under 3.5. This actually means that legwork can shift the advantage towards creativity and connections! In other words, involve your friends!

Are some characters better than others at legwork? What about skill points?

Anyone may use legwork, and should. Remember, final battles may only be 10% of the adventure. The rest is the epic journey across Mordor, and countering Sauron's influence. Don't be left out. Also, including others is useful, and expands the areas you can look. For example, if you'd like to interview the temple of Daeus, you'll find it advantageous to bring a Daeusite with you. Having someone onboard with connections to the group you're talking with gives you better results. If you're a rogue with a +20 diplomacy, they'll talk with you--but it's not in their interests to provide full disclosure. You'll get less than someone with ties to that organization, even if their score is lower. Skill points are helpful, but so are IC ties, and RPP investments.

Legwork: What if I'm a Martial PC?

Martial PCs are made to do legwork! Consider these classic stories:

The battered soldier lowers his rifle...then fingers the woodcutter's tool in his pocket, reminding him of happier times. Its cut surfaces he begun years ago, before dad had come in. Before he'd heard about his brother. A guard serves with blade and armor, yet in her spare time is a champion chess player, and student of war strategies. A barbarian lost her younger sister to a flash flood. Afterwards, there was no trace. Since then, she's determined no one will get lost. She possesses ranks in survival and k/geography, and RPP spends in profession/guide. She follows Gilead and is known among the wild for the ability to find the hardest cases, even in a rainstorm. She possess the scent rage power, though that leaves plenty of room for hitting things and a good HP soak. Profession/guide helps her reputation among others with similar interests, and scent and survival let her find anyone. So long as she's involved in the wilds, she doesn't need diplomacy. She gets by on raw, rugged talent and determination brought on by a lost sibling.

These fields of expertise are added in by authors, animators, and storytellers to define a PC. By delving into our characters, we add depth as well as give them a means to explore the world. It's done by fantasy authors all the time, and it's just one tool in a character's arsenal. In addition, all of these concepts are possible without sacrificing combat utility. The third example begins to show you how.

How can you make these concepts sing? Check out our Legwork Workshop, that talks about exactly these issues. ...and how to rock at legwork...even with "only 2 skill points per level."

Legwork: A Mini-Guide for Player GMs

What is a Legwork Queue, and Why do I want one as a GM?

Have you ever had one of the following situations?

  • Players want to look into the bad guy's organization!
  • Players want to follow-up on a rumor!

Perhaps you'd like to:

  • Encourage players to coordinate their inventories/purchases for an especially tough scene ahead!
  • Let players accomplish some things that require some effort, but not necessarily a full scene run by you. Or perhaps it just happens over time. These efforts probably lead to a scene, but you're not there yet.

...and so on. The above are examples of what you might want to use a legwork for. They are not the limit!

How do I Set One Up?

Any player GM may request a Legwork queue, and have as many or as few players added to it as they wish. There are two ways to do this:

If your legwork immediately follows an event, type: +event/leg <#>=Hi! I've opened a legwork on this scene. Use +myjob/add <#> to reply to it. This will auto-add all /confirmed players from that scene.
If your legwork does not immediately follow an event, just +request/legwork a scene yourself! Then, +myjob/source <#>=<name> <name> <name>. This command only works on legwork!

What Can I do with Them?

You can...

  • Ask for +rolls for investigative work
  • Ask players how they intend to accomplish a goal
  • Offer details on investigation, and any updated rumors
  • Even provide a miniature plot summary
  • ...and anything else you can think of

Legworks are a tool for every GM and player. Also, players may request or open them as well. Though this mini-guide isn't focused on that, you are free to request other PCs be added to your own legwork queues, as well.