Dungeons & Dragons Online

50 Plot Hooks for Guild Artisans

Rules and regulations, taxes and commissions, tools and materials, all as much a part of an artisans career as actually making things. Of course, being an adventurer on the side can complicate things even further.

Here are 50 plot hooks, ranging from the mundane to the magical, for you to adapt and modify.

  1. The Master that the PC apprenticed under has vanished after being commissioned by an Yaun-Ti Empress.

  2. Rumour tells of an invention in a distant land that can do the work of twenty artisans in a fraction of the time, threatening the PC’s guild, as well as everyone that makes a living in the profession.

  3. The city the PC’s guild is based in is requiring all of the registered artisans to renew their licences, or be forbidden from selling.

  4. A mystical caravan from the Fae wild is traveling through the land, producing wares of a beauty and intricacy that far exceeds any made by mortal hands. All of the guilds are desperate to either find out their secrets, or for the caravan to be far away from their clients, by any means necessary.

  5. The dragon that founded the PC’s guild several centuries ago has returned in order to certify those who qualify for mastery. To those who meet the creature’s exacting standards, riches, fame and prestige await. Those that fail to impress will likely not see the opportunity again in their life time.

  6. A fellow guild member has been accused of using magic to enhance his craft, sparking debate about the practice, and calls to change the guilds regulation to rectify it. Then the accused artisan is found dead.

  7. A rich noble in the kingdom has been bragging of his latest acquisition, an incredible (and implausible) example of the PC’s craft. The king, growing jealous, requests that the party break into his residence, find out the truth, and then recreate it.

  8. Someone has been hiring every artisan of the PC’s profession, and binding them to secrecy with magic, preventing them for revealing what it is that they’re working on. A letter arrives for the PC, inviting them to join.

  9. A map is uncovered to a set of legendary tools, used by an ancient master of the PC’s craft. The guild master dispatches the PC to retrieve them, but they aren’t the only ones on the trail.

  10. After increasing tensions with the ruling nobles, the guild have decided to strike, and any one who continues to work will be struck from the guild. At the same time, one of the nobles approaches the PC, asking if they can persuade the guild to recant, implying that if a peaceful situation isn’t found, then more drastic action will be taken

  11. An invitation goes out to several of the city’s major guilds, to arrange a festival celebrating the ingenuity of the artisans, and honouring the patron god of crafts. When the celebration is underway however, artisans begin to go missing, and the organisers are not who they appear.

  12. Someone is producing hundreds of identical copies of a piece that the PC made, and selling them for very reduced prices.

  13. The guild hall is being haunted by the ghost of a critic.

  14. A poor, unregistered artisan claims that a powerful member of the guild has stolen his designs, and asks the PC for help getting recompense. The Guild member makes it known that they would like the problem to go away.

  15. The heir to a noble house has taken up the PC’s craft, and travels to meet them, asking to be made their apprentice. His parents will not be pleased.

  16. Two guilds that work in similar fields are going to merge, but many of the people involved are acting uncharacteristically. One guild member approaches the PC with concerns that those making the deal have been ensorcelled.

  17. A vital component of the supply chain has become impossible to find, and the guild dispatches the PC to investigate the source of the disturbance.

  18. Someone has been airing grievous complaints regarding the quality of the PC’s product.

  19. A new process is taking the industry by storm, but it requires the horn of a unicorn in order to complete.

  20. The Guild Master wants the PC to travel to a subterranean dwarven kingdom, in order to steal the secrets of their famed artisans

  21. Four famed crafters from various professions have been found murdered using their own tools, and the Master the PC trained under believes that she will be next.

  22. An influential noble has been seen with the PC’s wears, and the increased demand threatens to complicate their current adventure, as well as attracting the attention of other jealous artisans.

  23. A rumour is going round that several of the most prolific artisans in the city received their talent from fiendish bargains.

  24. A contact of the PC’s reveals that the city officials and the guild leadership are considering downsizing the guild and instead outsourcing the work to a gnomish colony in the forrest.

  25. The guild is planning an expedition to the elemental plane of earth in order to gather materials, and would like the PC to escort them.

  26. The PC’s talent seems to be slowly draining away, and a long held rival’s ability has reached dizzying new heights.

  27. The greatest artisans in the PC’s field have been invited to compete, to once and for all prove who reigns supreme.

  28. The Guild Master has announced her retirement, and the internal struggle to decide on a successor now begins.

  29. After another artisan failed to meet the Emperor’s exacting standards, the Guild turns to the PC to try and smooth things over.

  30. The apprentice of a prominent and influential guild member approaches the PC, confiding in them mistreatment at the hands of their master.

  31. A powerful wizard wishes to use the PC’s craft to create the base of an item that they will then enchant, but the purpose of the item seems to grow more sinister the more the wizard reveals.

  32. The PC’s master dies, leaving behind her unfinished magnum opus. Her final wish is that the PC completes it.

  33. Rumour tells of a place, high in the mountains, where a lone artisan waits, ready to teach those who make the journey to his workshop, and that he deems worthy.

  34. A band of Gith traders from the astral sea are passing through, offering ingredients of a legendary nature, at a price that is as esoteric as it is costly. Not that that’s stopping the various guild members form racing to procure whatever they can.

  35. The Artificers guild reaches out to the PC, offering a large sum of money, and powerful magical items, if they’ll feed information about the inner workings of their guild.

  36. An otherwise mundane artisan's items are producing powerful and dramatic magical effects, to his distress. They have come to the PC seeking help to make it stop.

  37. The ruling class have decided to raise taxes on all of the guilds in the city, and as a way to avoid paying, the PC’s guild has decided to invest its reserves within a business venture that operates outside of the city’s laws, namely, the PC’s adventuring party. They will expect a return on this investment.

  38. A religious spat between the patrons of two different guilds has escalated into a feud, and the other guilds in the city are being asked to pick sides.

  39. A prodigal child has been found, gifted beyond all imagining in the PC’s craft. The guild wants the PC to take her on as their apprentice, but there’s something strange going on in the village that she’s from.

  40. A work of art created by one of the leading artisans in the city has been transformed via magic into a living creature. The wizard and the artisan both claim that they own the object, while the creature is plotting to its own agenda.

  41. One of the larger guilds in the city has been dissolved by the crown, and the other guilds in the city are wondering who’s next.

  42. A devil from the 9 Hells has been apportioned as the guild master, and his position is in accordance with all of the by-laws. The policy changes that they have been enacting don’t seem to have any sinister implications, but the PC has drawn the Devil’s interest, and he has ‘asked’ them to attend a private audience.

  43. The city where the guild is based is under siege, and is expected to fall soon. A private meeting of all guild members is held, to decide whether they will defect to the incoming rulers, or attempt to mount a resistance

  44. The bylaws of the guild require an investigation of the PC’s other activities, in order to check that they are in compliance with all of the guild’s many regulations. To make sure it’s as thorough as possible, the invigilator will be accompanying the PC on their next trip.

  45. The guildhall has burnt down, killing several of the residents. The guild-master however, seems oddly okay with this turn of events. The bank requests that the PC investigate the possibility of fraud.

  46. The latest change in tax laws has the various guilds plotting rebellion against the crown.

  47. A grand change to the cosmic structure, or possibly the machinations of one of the various banks, has rendered gold in the city totally worthless. The guild is scrambling to discover the cause, and continue to make a profit while the new equilibrium establishes itself.

  48. The creations of every artisan in the guild begin to unmake themselves, slowly reverting into the constituent parts.

  49. Another guild member, beaten to a prestigious commission by the PC, hires a group of mercenaries to prevent it from being delivered.

  50. A sentient construct approaches the PC, requesting their aid in repairing its body.

Read more:  A Build Proficient with Every Skill by 7th Level

Others in the series: Nobles


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