As a start to the game I (Belladonna), as the 1st DM, took it upon myself to find an inventive means to engage the players in the game. Hence the development of the pre-quest. This was to take place before the first game to get the player and the character involved. The pre-quest story line had a number of similar elements, which will be listed below. My Fav part of the pre-quest was I got to gauge how each player played the game and the general demeanor of the PC before game time.
Pre-quest Overview: ~ Mysterious visit from a humanoid puppet in PC’s dreams. ~ Given documents from employer; 1 contract of employment for three months and 1 personally written note. ~ Travel to meeting point. ~ Meeting Mysterious Monster ~ Arrival at Foxburn Inn.
I greatly enjoyed doing the pre-quest with the players. I tried to balance creep, scracy, and mysterious, which I think turned out better in certain situations then others. I did this with some player over e-mail and other in person with other players there. I think e-mail worked much better.
Another aspect that I really enjoyed was the fact that each PC ended up beginning the game with different information, depending on how they acted in the pre-quest. This left it so that the players have to discuss the pre-quest to find out. This worked out in terms of the monsters but there is still some more info sharing if they want to pick up on some of the other part of the pre-quest.
All in all I think the pre-quest was a great way to start the game. And everyone should put a comment on how much they loved or hated it =)