Thursday, February 10, 2011

An update of sorts.

I know. I haven't updated this blog in a while. A long while. I've moved at least some of it over to and that's where most of it will remain. I think I'm going to keep this one going too, but for more... I dunno if I can call them personal posts, but stuff that might not be of interest to the wider public or things that are more controversial. Almost wish I'd posted my "Play at your own pace" article here, but what's done is done.

But the thing I most want to post here is my campaign logs, along with links, maps, and the sort. So you can steal the encounters or maps for your own or just watch a campaign unfold in more detail or see my thinking behind encounter, map, or story design. Some of the encounters and areas will be the same as in my earlier posts, but some will not. If you're one of my players? Please don't go read those old ones. :P You'll enjoy it more in the long run to be surprised.

Which brings me finally to the point. I rebooted my campaign this week. Rebooted and relocated. I had been running this campaign locally, this was my modified Rescue at Rivenroar thing. But the group fell apart. And what's more, the campaign was just not going well. Some of that is on my head. Rivenroar itself is too much of a grind. It's a very long dungeon without a lot of unique or interesting fights and there were far too many combats even if they all were interesting. I did what I could on that count, cutting some combats and changing many more. But ultimately, it was too long and too much of the same thing. I was not at my best at all. The players also shared some of the blame, some of them uninterested in the story, others hating the system, and none of them at all seeming all that engaged in the campaign. They were more than happy to let the NPCs they rescued fade into the background and be ignored and I couldn't make anybody care about what was going on. And that utter lack of enthusiasm sapped and eventually killed my own. I didn't want to run a game anymore for the group. And almost 4 months later, I still don't, outside of one-shots or similarly short adventures/stories. But that's not important right now.

So what did I do? I decided to take my game online. I would find a group of players that I thought would be more enthusiastic and interested in what I was doing. I would take the lessons I'd learned in my first try at running the campaign and make things better for this go. I would put in more effort and try and coax that same level of effort out of my PCs, using Obsidian Portal. I would try and do interesting and unique things to make it different from other campaigns the players might have been in, for example doing a video trailer for the campaign like you'd see for a movie.

I don't want this campaign to fail and I'm going to work hard at it not doing so. I've assembled a really good group of players and I think there's some good chemistry brewing even in just the first two sessions (only one of which was a play session).

So, soon I'll post things like links to the Actual Play podcast sessions we're doing, links to the relevant adventure logs from players on Obsidian Portal, as well as PDFs with maps and monsters for each encounter. I hope you will enjoy them.