This thread got me thinking. I’ve been reading too many published adventures lately that all have a timer of some sort. Some big bad Thing is going down, and the adventurers need to stop it. What kind of adventure/campaign can be constructed where taking a week-long rest doesn’t result in towns destroyed, kidnapped princesses sacrifced, or the BBEG inching closer to his plan?
What are some plot hooks that allow for downtime?
Artifact search. Nothing bad happens if they don’t find it, it’s just a cool thing to discover. Perhaps a rival treasure-seeker to racket up the tension when needed.
Survive. There might be a clock, but the goal is to run it out. Fight off monsters on the island until rescued. Find your way to the portal out of the Feywild.
Wow! It has been a while and I’d lost my way. Too much going on to indulge my hobbies, but I’m back. After some unexpected surgery and the mandatory recovery time, I’ve realigned with some of the fun things in my life. This post was originally entitled “Father’s Day Update – Summary Campaign with my Minions”, in which I described my re-emergence, my recent involvement/re-involvement with Table-Top Role-playing Games, and described the fun new campaign I’m running with my family this summer.
You read that right….”Father’s Day”. I’ve been working on this post for more than a week now. Now some of that is related to making decisions on the nature and form of the campaign as I wrote about them, but mostly, I think I was just trying to write about too many different things at once. Obviously, that isn’t helping me actually complete any writing in a meaningful time frame and it certainly isn’t developing the sort of engagement for which I was hoping online. So I’ve decided to break things down into smaller bite sizes and see how that goes.
I’d been filling the gaming void in my life with some Baldur’s Gate with one of my minions (10), but it is now time to come back to the table and table-top games. Time to come back to Dungeons & Dragons.
By D&D, I have come to mean essentially any table-top role-playing game (generally, meaning with a fantasy slant, but not always). HAG and Aega Mythea essentially grew out of my need to house-rule and tinker with game engines/mash stuff up and out-of-the-box D&D is somewhat of a rarity in my gaming history, but in this case (as it were), you will see that I actually mean actual D&D…D&D 5E to be more exact. More on that later.
With regard to the most basics of the campaign, let’s start with the players and their circumstances. First of all, due to some unexpected surgery, I am home on the mend, healing up from that. Hence both my time and inclination to play again (you look death in the face and you may find yourself refocusing your life a bit….in this case, time with family). I have three players: my wife (who loves games, but was never really into D&D, but is excited to give it a go) and my two kids (12 and 10, both of whom have a little experience with D&D and such games). We are very excited to do this together and I’ll be sure to provide updates and expansions on this post as appropriate.
Moving from 2E to 5E! I thought my move from 3E/PF/CnC to dabble in 5E was a jump. Way to be Evil DM! I do agree though that there’s a lot of good materials available in other editions (esp. 2E settings).
I’ve previously posted about the TriDie (aka mid20, roll 3d20 and take the mid result) and it will feature front and center in the Aega Mythea mashup! In fact, no other dice will be needed.
In getting back to developing and describing HAGIS, let’s talk about the main mechanic randomizer…the TriDie. Torben Mogensen, esteemed RPG Mathematician of DoomTM,has been discussing this very mechanic in his recent article on RPG.net. Torben (and Woodelf….where, o where art thou, Woodelf?) were the first to propose this mechanic to me on the Yahoo RPG Create board. Let me explain….no, there’s no time….Let me sum up. Rather than te … Read More
As I’ve mentioned (see my post below from…jeeze over 3 years ago), I’m a big fan of John Kirk’s RPG Design Patterns. Its a work that describes aspects of mechanics, etc. that are implemented indifferent games, as well as the pros and cons of each. Well, some months ago (Sept 2009), he released a new version of the work available on his download page (here). You may be interested in his most excellent Legendary Quest (cool mythic gaming) and Gnostigmata (with which I’m unfamiliar, but looks cool at first glance) while you’re there. If you’re really into it, you might contribute to the Elements of Design wiki that went up in February 2010.
I highly recommend this book by John Kirk for those table-top RPG designers, Gamemasters, and even players who want to understand how the nuts and bolts of the varying design elements can make a game work (or not work) in supporting design goals. Design Patterns of Successful Role-playing Games Even if one disagrees with any of the specifics contained within, it definitely can serve as fodder for thought. It has greatly influenced some of the dec … Read More
Anyway, his use of terminology and such largely makes sense to me so I try to use it in my own design endeavors. I also deeply consider his thoughts on the merits/shortcomings of each element before using…whether I completely agree or not, it is instructive to follow his logic. I’ve added this note as a reference for my Aega Mythea game (a Atlantean Trilogy + Castles & Crusades + HAGIS mashup). I’ll be putting up some specifics about how I see that working in bits and pieces.