Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Startin' a Campaign Blues

Aight, so I'm trying not to get stuck in a rut.

I am slated to start up a Pathfinder game when the wife's best friend returns to town, which is in a matter of days. I'm trying to get my brain into "campaign kickoff" mode. I've been so preoccupied with making sure my knowledge of 3.x is functional that I haven't put pen to paper with regards to setting, et al. Normally, as I have mentioned before, I like to start each fantasy game in a completely new world. However, as I tried to generate ideas in my brain earlier today, I found that a lot of names I came up with sound "samey" to stuff I have come up with in the past. On one hand, I'm kind of tempted to embrace this samey-ness, because it reminds me of my pre-3.x burnout days when I had fun running it with my old group... on the other hand, I don't want it to seem somehow typical or rehashed. Hell, maybe I should give that crazy "bottom up" thing a try; it worked for my AD&D game. (Which, reviewing the old notebooks, was actually a pretty sharp departure from my usual stuff)

I also need to come up with something better than goblin raids for my first adventure. I need the beginning of this campaign to depart radically from the usual orcy-gobliny business that usually begins a D&D campaign. How, dearest readers, do YOU begin a campaign?

I will also make it known that this campaign will be, at best only semi-sandbox. I have two players (the missus and her bff) who enjoy story in games. I cannot abide a linear, on-rails game, however, so I'm going to strike a balance between the two. (if I can)

These creative juices need to get flowing, not only for PF but also for SWN. In another session or two (hopefully) the players will have repaired their ship enough to get off the planet on which they are currently stranded, and the game can stop being a high-tech dungeon crawl and start being a space adventure. In a way, it will be like starting the campaign anew. (Or like finishing the un-skippable demo part of a video game...)

The hour is late, so it looks like the serious brainstorming will have to start tomorrow.


  1. Well, kobolds are decidedly more "dragon-y" especially if you give them each the ability to cast a single sorcerer spell(it was a feat from Races of the Dragon). My all time favorite 3.x adventure path though was the Age of Wyrms. I seem to recall that the Whispering Cairn had little in the way of humanoids. You could always steal the town(Diamond Lake), and the dungeon and use it as a basis for creating a new world.

  2. I have experienced the same thing, that feeling of, "I would rather slam my hand in a car door than roll out the tired goblin caves." I've bee gaming since 1982 and I've had quite enough of goblin caves, thank you.

    I want to run pathfinder some day and like my World of Darkness chronicle, I think I'm going to stick mostly to human and demi-human adversaries, because at the very least I get to infuse the combatants with a bit of personality and flair.

    It's odd, though, because as a player I am totally fine raiding gobbo caves. I think this is due simply to the fact I have relatively little experience as a player and kicking the hell out of goblins is all rather new to me.

  3. This comment is a headstone for the excellent comments by christian and 2eDM, eating during the great Blogpocalypse of Wednesday.