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In a world where people can become adventurers where they slay monsters for a living, one person has decided to become a famous adventurer. However, he does not want to do it for noble purposes, he only wants the fame and glory (which gives him chances to earn a lot of money as well). What should he do in order to gain visibility?

Background of the world : The world is medieval era, where the magic is very weak (the occasional fireball, or some simple healing spells (nothing else though)), however the human race over there seems to have much higher strength, which allows them to fight monsters. Monsters vary, from goblins or orcs to the legendary dragons. Adventurers (talented ones that is) can slowly become stronger, and have higher mana capacity, meaning the strongest adventurers will have superhuman strength and can use spells to great effect. Also,they naturally absorb mana from outside, and using spells (obviously) depletes their reserves. As a adventurer becomes stronger, their mana reserves slowly increase (though no one knows how or why).

Background of the character: The character is good-looking, and looks impressive (6 feet). He is also kind of rich, and owns good weapons and armours. So it won't be hard for him to convince others that he is strong.

Note : The hero is not particularly strong (slightly above average strength), which is why he cannot simply stroll to a enemy stronghold and kill everyone. Also I do not want a 'best answer', just some points on what to do. The point is that he has to find a way to become well known using the least amount of effort. (Timeline does not matter much, taking a few years is fine.)

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  • $\begingroup$ Does he have money to invest in this? He's going to need credible-looking weapons and armour, and probably more money for whatever means he uses to become famous. $\endgroup$ – John Dallman Jul 27 '16 at 16:06
  • $\begingroup$ how/what is the process that he gains mana. Is it just taking of a life, using his abilities, or something else? $\endgroup$ – depperm Jul 27 '16 at 16:26
  • $\begingroup$ @JohnDallman : I'll add that info $\endgroup$ – King of Snakes Jul 28 '16 at 4:13
  • $\begingroup$ @depperm : I'll add a description of that (srry, I forgot about the magic aspect) $\endgroup$ – King of Snakes Jul 28 '16 at 4:13
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    $\begingroup$ Reminder to close-voters... $\endgroup$ – Frostfyre Jul 29 '16 at 12:14
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Create the printing press and become a reporter of great deeds. Publish stories about the greatest adventurers of the age and their amazing conquests.

Then after everyone has begun to accept your paper accounts as truths, start mentioning your own adventures in the back pages. Kill a fictional goblin or troll in a distant land in every other issue. Be humble about it during the original story and then reference it in later works...

This reporter had the honor of actually seeing the great troll that Dalmore the Destroyer killed yesterday, and it was BIG! I mean really, really BIG! It had to be at least a foot taller than the one I killed last month.

Keep this up for a year or two, then take a sabbatical. Let your trusted cousin run the paper for a few months so that you can go on a grand quest! As you depart, have your cousin print a story, announcing your journey and wishing you well.

Then a few weeks later, have him publish your obituary, listing you slain while fighting a dozen dragons single handed. Publish a memorial issue of the paper, in honor of you, its fallen founder. In that issue, list your many great adventures and unlikely escapes. No one will blame your cousin if he exaggerates a little and years later, those exaggerations will be treated as facts.

Let a month or so go by, and then ride back into town, wrapped in bandages and carrying a broken sword. Explain how you managed to kill the two biggest dragons, then leap into a raging river to escape the rest. To keep from drowning, you had to abandon your armor and shield, but you kept what was left of your sword for sentimental reasons.

Hesitantly allow your cousin to publish an account of your adventure on the front page, then complain that he was too generous in his praise and that there had really only been eleven dragons.

After such a narrow escape, nobody would blame you for giving up the adventurous life and retiring early. Great heroes like you have earned their right to rest. Leave the monster killing to those who have not yet won their glory. Sit back and enjoy your fame.

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    $\begingroup$ The Lockhart approach $\endgroup$ – nzaman Jul 27 '16 at 17:02
  • $\begingroup$ Exactly! Just without the foolishness of trying to remain a hero (or superior wizard) after the fame has been won. $\endgroup$ – Henry Taylor Jul 27 '16 at 17:06
  • $\begingroup$ This really made me laugh, "he was too generous in his praise and that there had really only been eleven dragons." . Very nice, +1 from me :) $\endgroup$ – King of Snakes Jul 28 '16 at 4:23
  • $\begingroup$ One issue: while you might be able to claim having killed lesser monsters to be considered a warrior, to be called a hero, you probably need to kill something that has already acquired some notoriety in the land you intend to be praised in. Why has nobody ever heard of these eleven dragons? And if they have, what happens when they show up? There's a reason why Lockhart had to take the credit for other people's kills, rather than just make up his own. Maybe you can kill notorious monsters using less-than-heroic methods and change the details when writing the story? $\endgroup$ – IndigoFenix Jul 28 '16 at 5:27
  • $\begingroup$ Never underestimate the power of the press! All the hero need do is have a column in his newspaper which lists all of the monsters at large. Most of the entries on that list would real, but a few mythical ones would be seeded in for future use. Through yellow journalism, he can build up the outstanding threats as easily has he can build up his kill count. The trick is to keep it close to true. ...and maybe to share the wealth a little! If a person questions a mythical monster from their old home town, do a Hero of the Day article on them, praising their numerous kills. $\endgroup$ – Henry Taylor Jul 28 '16 at 12:54
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He just has to Hiccup

In the popular children's movie, How to Train your Dragon, the society there is all based on your skills as a dragon slayer. People who are better at killing dragons become more popular. Hiccup, a weak, tiny scrap of meat, has no hope of killing a dragon in the traditional way (swords and hammers), so he is forced to act as the blacksmiths assistant instead. Eventually he builds a ballista like net device and traps one of the deadliest dragons there are, the rests doesn't matter.

If the adventurer simply builds a dead-weight trap or a giant snare, he can kill even the largest monster of this world (which based on your question, I'm guessing are dragons, though traps can be made for monsters of all shapes and sizes). Now based on the society he lives in, he may actually have to trap the beast and kill it himself, or he may have to hide the fact he even trapped it, but still, with trapping he can kill anything.

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  • $\begingroup$ Just a nit, but that isn't a children's movie. The producers wanted to make a movie they would enjoy, so it would be more accurately classified as a family movie. However, it's based on a book series (by the same name) that is young adult/fantasy. $\endgroup$ – Frostfyre Jul 27 '16 at 16:53
  • $\begingroup$ @Frostfyre good point, for the record I love the movie, it doesn't matter the rating, it's a great movie. $\endgroup$ – TrEs-2b Jul 27 '16 at 16:58
  • $\begingroup$ The Blu-Ray lets you switch between PG and Unrated versions. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Jul 28 '16 at 15:33
  • $\begingroup$ @JDługosz what could be unrated about that movie?..... $\endgroup$ – TrEs-2b Jul 28 '16 at 15:44
  • $\begingroup$ Joke: explicit and adult animated material for wider audience. Based on funny labels in general and I didn’t actually check on that specific disc: director’s cut and bonus material is “not rated” in that it was ever submitted for checking. So the PIP view, behind the scenes cut-in asides, and commentary audio are unrated. And in reality, someone might say something unbleeped, make crude jokes, etc. It was never certified to meet PG standards. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Jul 28 '16 at 18:03
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What he needs is some singers or Storytellers of some kind. If he sponsors them with money then they will sing songs and tell stories about his adventures and great Deeds. This is actually done in the Middle Ages in order to increase one's popularity among the people nobleman would sponsor singers as well as other artists and entertainers to spread positive information about them.

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    $\begingroup$ Be careful which minstrels you choose, though... "When danger turned its ugly head he bravely turned his tail and fled the brave brave brave brave sir Robbin." $\endgroup$ – ckersch Jul 27 '16 at 18:30
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Protection Racket

This question brings me back to a very interesting D&D campaign I ran a long time ago. The premise was that there was a "lair of terrible monsters threatening the town of X" except there wasn't. Instead, some brigands had found a cleared out former orc lair and were pretending to be monsters and running a scam to lure low level adventurers and rob them.

In this case, I would have your wanna be famous adventurer do something VERY simple: cut a deal with a nasty tribe of human-hating creatures. (Orcs, goblins, whatever you have in your world). He works out a mutually beneficial arrangement with them whereby they gain a lot of loot and he gains a lot of fame. The human scouts out weak human towns that don't have a lot of protection/easy targets. He relays the info to the orcs/whatever. They then raid said town, and just in the nick of time (after a suitable amount of goods have been taken by the orcs) our hero rides in on a big white horse to save the day. He "singlehandedly slays the bad guys" (by chasing them into a thicket and a lot of loud noise being made to simulate a great battle, or whatever they come up with to fool the townies). Then wearily makes his way back into town, wiping the monsters "blood" from his blade to humbly accept the thanks of the poor villagers (and no doubt the comforts of grateful local females as well). The next morning, off he goes to "save" another village or town.

Soon, he would be known all over the land as a guy who is constantly saving people from bad monster raiders. What might take longer to figure out is how these monsters are so good at pinpointing exactly where to raid where OTHER adventurers aren't and there is no significant opposition from roaming royal guards or whatever.

The scam could even evolve into a tidy little protection racket (I bet the orc chief would prefer that, since he wants the goods with minimal risk and doesn't care about the human's reputation.)

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  • $\begingroup$ This (and some of the other unconventional ideas) reminds me of Asperin’s myth series. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Jul 28 '16 at 18:11
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Chicken Slayer

Buy a chicken farm, and kill lots and lots of chickens, thus increasing his mana reserves and strength. Then once he has gained sufficient strength go out and slay a more powerful. This is under the assumption that like a video game doing anything gets you experience and power. Chickens are a slow way to gain power but they are easy, cheap, and good practice.

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  • $\begingroup$ Don't forget upgrading chicken farm to stockyard before going for monsters; you won't gain a lot of lv on easiest enemies. $\endgroup$ – user8808 Jul 28 '16 at 13:08
  • $\begingroup$ @Roux I realize it won't be a lot but he did mention (Timeline does not matter much, taking a few years is fine.) $\endgroup$ – depperm Jul 28 '16 at 13:10
  • $\begingroup$ This is a nice, if somewhat roundabout way. Though it would requires tons of chickens ☺ I'll upvote this, but the hero is quite selfish and he wants to become famous without much effort. Becoming the legendary ChickenSlayer and spending hours killing chickens is not something he'll do $\endgroup$ – King of Snakes Jul 28 '16 at 13:16
  • $\begingroup$ The idea is to slay the chickens, which doesn't take much effort and don't tell others, that way they don't know how he became so powerful and came out of nowhere $\endgroup$ – depperm Jul 28 '16 at 13:20
  • $\begingroup$ @depperm : Slaying a chicken isn't difficult. However he has to slay a lot of them. That itself will take a few years for him to 'level up'. Basically my question is about how one selfish guy can pretend he killed something powerful without actually killing it. $\endgroup$ – King of Snakes Jul 28 '16 at 15:33

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