Today on The Mary Sue, Wil Wheaton talks about players long and short term goals, with how to give them a pay off on those to provide motivation. I personally call these sort of motivations “Soft” drivers, because they usually only involve one PC and thus following them can be up to the other party members. In Wil’s case with Titansgrave, he’s been directly implementing the players goals and drives into the plot, such as in Chapter 4. This is an easier way to do things and is very effective, especially in reducing the workload of the GM. However, my problem with doing this for every personal drive and goal of the players is that it can start to feel a bit artificial. Especially when conveniently everything they have as a goal coincides with this random place they just visited.
In any event, I hope to continue seeing this feature on The Mary Sue and Wil’s advice has been really good so far.