Quest Idea - Swindling Baker

Looking for a new idea for quests in your role playing group? Give the swindling baker idea a try. Every town in every universe has a baker around!

First, set the stage. Have your characters learn about a high priced item - say a necklace or a ring - that was stolen from a local noble. The noble is offering a reward for return of the item. By asking around, the group discovers that all signs point to the local town baker.

However, the baker is a VERY secretive man, who trusts nobody at all with his confidence. He is paranoid that people are trying to steal his secret recipes. His shop is completely locked up and he has no safe or other strong box. Any attempts by the party to break in or search will find nothing.

In talking to the baker, the party learns that he is looking for an apprentice or apprentices, and that such a person would be trusted with his secret location of ingredients and treasures. So the party needs to sign up to be those apprentices. At first they are given simple tasks, carrying water, mixing dough. But after a week or two, the baker decides to test if they are really suitable for the next step.

Here's the fun part. Blindfold the group members. Then go into the other room and bring out small tupperware containers or bowls of items that have identifiable smells. The bowls should all be the same size and people cannot touch the actual item. They then have to identify what the item is based on smell, to show their culinary talent. Some items to try would include:

* strawberry, cut up
* apple, cut up
* orange, sliced
* pineapple, sliced
* raspberry
* shaved chocolate
* cinnamon
* oregano
* black pepper

You can make the puzzle as easy or as hard as the group warrants. For small kids, the basic strawberry / orange items will work well. For adults that like to cook, you can go for obscure herbs and see how well they do. If they fail, you can always make them do 'menial work' for a while and try again. Depending on how generous you are, you can make the next test just as difficult, or perhaps drop the difficulty down a bit.

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