The Gassy Gnoll: A Summer Campaign (RPG Blog Carnival)

This month’s RPG Blog Carnival topic is “Campaigns I’d Like to Run,” hosted by Lowell Francis over at Age of Ravens. If you haven’t checked out his site, I’d encourage you to do so. He’s written about his own campaigns, other sites, and even long series of posts focusing on the history of particular genres of RPG. There’s all kinds of good stuff up there to dive into.

RPG Blog Carnival logoBut this carnival’s all about my own campaigns and what I’d like to run if time wasn’t an object. Though opportunities for this Gassy Gnoll have existed, I have somehow managed to avoid them for more than a decade. Sure, I’ve had a few isolated sessions that were intended to become longer campaigns. Sometimes I was even lucky enough to get two or three sessions in before things faded into oblivion. But that has always been the result. It always fizzles. The last campaign of any sort I ran was back in 1998/1999 and seems a million years ago now.

So why is now different? What’s changed? I have two daughters who are creative, gifted, and big bright spots in my life. And though we’ve dabbled here and there with some sessions, I’d like to get a world in motion so we can explore it indefinitely.

What am I considering? Classic fantasy. Good old dungeon crawls punctuated by urban encounters. A world where the good guys are good and the bad guys are horrible, but you want to root for them anyway. Classic fantasy offers me plenty of opportunity to take good old fairy tales and twist them to my needs I think, without scaring the crud out of them. (Though I’ve also been considering an urban fantasy instead, something along the lines of a Supernatural or Dresden Files. But I don’t think they’re quite ready for what horrors might exist in the real world.)

Though I’ve run a few Cyberpunk-ish campaigns over the years, I always tend towards good old fantasy. There’s just something about the traditional tropes that offers lots of room to adapt whatever I want to use.

What system? Either 4e or DCC most likely, though I’d enjoy giving Fate a shot at some point.

What do I need? A good place to start and a way to weave bits from other places together so they don’t seem like so much of a patch-work even if they are.

Where would it go? That’s an excellent question. I suspect I’d run it largely as a sandbox world until they got into a dungeon or particular module and then would play those fairly straight.

What would I get out of it? First and foremost I’d get to play with my kids and share one of my favorite pastimes. Second, I have a built-in gaming group here and my wife can even join in occasionally if she’s around. Third, we can steal time when we have it – play an hour or so while we have lunch together, play after dinner, or even plan for longer sessions over the weekends if we have the time.

I will likely adapt some of the pieces of my old Moebius Adventures setting (the “Age of Phaedrus” was more a traditional fantasy world with some fun twists) and add some new bits, working in modules from the multitude of great publishers putting adventures together for the DCC RPG. Are we going to die a lot? You bet – in probably some really ugly ways. Will it be fun? Heck yeah!

So I am hoping to get some of the pieces in place before school ends in a few weeks. Will it work? I don’t know! Probably!?! I’ll likely report on the campaign and we’ll see where we go from there.

A hearty thank you goes out to Lowell Francis for kicking things off and I look forward to some of the awesome posts in the carnival!!

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