So in the 4th Edition players handbook there was this town.
The town was called Fallcrest and it was quite useful. It had a lot of people and places in it but it wasn't very interesting.
So the people and the places were already there and I wanted the place to be interesting. So I started thinking about nice towns where everything is correctly arranged, 4th Edition is a lot like a well arranged market town. This made me think of David Lynch.
And there was already a map and I love maps. And I am very lazy.
So I took the town-as-written as a kind of surface reality and decided to 'seed' other, stranger realities within it.
I made conspiracies, ten of them, and I put them in a spreadsheet.
The way this works is this. There are ten conspiracies and each conspiracy has ten stages of understanding. When the players get to the end they have a big fight with someone and that conspiracy is done.
As they walk into the town, throw a D10. That clue is the one they notice first. If it doesnt fit, pick one that does. You put an X in the box. The PC's will do something in response to the clue.
If the thing they do is creative, interesting, intelligent or if they just roll high, then find a way to introduce the next clue or event, or idea.
Track time closely. Days can become eventful. Most of the Schoolchildren in Fallcrest were dead by the end of day three.
If the players do something cool, perceptive or offbeat, or if you get bored, then roll a D10 and introduce another conspiracy. Or a new part of a current conspiracy.
Eventually the players are dealing with a lot of wierd clues and events. They do not all make sense in relation to each other but they do all make sense eventually. This creates a pleasent feeling of situational depth for the players.
Here is the spreadsheet. Conspiracies In Fallcrest