One of my parties decided on running Princes of the Apocalypse for their next campaign after Lost Mine of Phandelver. While researching character bonds and background hooks, I made this newby DM mistake:
While I really appreciate Sly Flourish’s rewrite of the hooks and think he did a fantastic job summarizing them, I didn’t realize how many names of people and places were shared. I thought it felt like a little too much information to give away to everybody in the party, so I rewrote them to take out names. I do plan to give the names the players who choose those hooks. I am having the players choose 2 hooks and keep them secretive from the other players, and I will decide what happens in the event of multiple players choosing the same hooks, as some may work like that while some may not.
Princes of the Apocalypse
Character Adventure Hooks
Best Served Cold: A silver-tongued bard murdered your sister. You seek revenge against this murderous minstrel, who was last seen in the area of the Dessarin Valley.
Dangerous Information: During your travels you overheard that a group of murderous bandits are planning a terrible raid somewhere in the Dessarin Valley.
Dangerous Secret: A mysterious circle of druids supposedly know of a ritual magic unknown to other druids. You have been sent to infiltrate these druids, now residing somewhere in the Dessarin Valley, and learn of their secret.
Dark Omens: The signs and portents are clear. Nature is out of balance. You have apocalyptic dreams of fire, floods, tornados, and earthquakes swallowing up the towns of the Dessarin Valley. You travel to the Dessarin Valley to seek out and remove the reason for this imbalance.
Defeat the Skyraiders: Viscous raiders mounted on hippogriffs have laid waste to several small hamlets and merchant caravans. In the process they murdered your closest friend. You have arrived having heard word of their activity in the Dessarin Valley.
Feathrgale Rebel: Nobles of Waterdeep hired you to retrieve a Waterdhavian noblewoman who was last seen somewhere in the Dessarin Valley.
The Fugitive: You are on the trail of a wizard who murdered his fellow mages and stole their arcane knowledge. His last recent sightings are in the lands of the Dessarin Valley.
Hired Hand: The homesteaders who raised you as their own and were often kind to itinerant workers are now missing. You now seek to rescue the members of your adopted family who still live and seek revenge for those now dead.
Madman at Haunted Keep: Brigands you used to travel with took a dark murderous turn, andd you just happen to know a secret entrance to their keep.
The Mud Sorcerer: Months ago you were robbed by an earth genasi who killed several innocent bystanders by tearing open a rift in the ground and swallowing them deep into the earth. You must find him and make him pay.
Ominous Dream: Your dreams are filled with nightmares of the earth swallowing thousands while a male medusa stands atop a rock etched with a strange symbol. You know that this dangerous villain must be stopped before this disaster comes to pass.
Recover Your Sword: Thugs broke into the workshop where you apprenticed and murdered the master smith who taught you. They stole a beautiful sword she made and carved strange symbols into the walls of the shop.
Rescue Your People: Raiders have abducted members of your family and must be rescued at any cost. They left behind only a strange symbol burned into the wood of your home. You’ve heard that similar signs have been seen around the Dessarin Valley.
Seeking Revenge: Your home village had been put to the torch, killing dozens of your friends and neighbors. Your investigations have led you to the Dessarin Valley.
Settle a Score: Your family has been robbed and you were left for dead by marauders wearing armor that looked like stone. You have heard of similar raids in the Dessarin Valley.
Stormbringer’s Trail: Your ship has been sunk by an unnatural storm sending many of your brothers on the sea to their watery deaths. Your investigations have uncovered a stormbringer that he resides somewhere in the Dessarin Valley.
Strange Map: An ancient map showing a forgotten dwarf stronghold beneath the Sumber Hills has come into your possession. Though incomplete and faded, it has a name written on it in dwarven.
Suspicious Fellow: You have been sent to investigate a suspicious activities of a knight of the Feathergale Society who now resides somewhere in the Dessarin Valley.
Undercover: You have been tasked to break up a smuggling and piracy ring taking place somewhere on the Dessarin River.
Walked Away: While working as a freelance mercenary you fell in with a group who began an unhealthy association with fire as their weapon of choice. You left the group after the began to burn their victims alive. You now worry that these mercenaries are responsible for troubles in the Dessarin Valley and must be stopped.
That’s it! I hope somebody else may find this useful, and am looking forward to the elemental adventures that await the party in Princes of the Apocalypse.