9/11/13

How Do You Start and End Campaigns?

"Why, yes, it is a Calabi-Yau space."
My question is really about how you think about the end of a campaign when you are starting it...hopefully that makes sense.

Do you: (a) just start and plan on playing until it fizzles out at some point? (b) Start with a time limit in mind but only a vague idea of how to end the campaign and then figure it out as you go? (c) Start with a series of options for the ending and then see which direction the players go? (d) Start with a clear destination and end in view? (e) Or is it None Of The Above?

8 comments:

  1. My first answer is simply, yes.

    My second answer is I like to have some sort of arch going on. I may have a vague idea how I would like it to play out, but players usually develop their own end scenario. Our latest campaign with Rob ended with us completing the inn. It was nothing heroic or epic, but it seemed right that it ended there. It's dangerous to have a distinct view of how it should end cause that could lead to railroad tracks.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It seems like our Monday Night Gaming Group hovers somewhere between "b" and "c."

      Delete
  2. My current campaign has a time limit in mind (about one year), and I have a rough story arc planned out for the first half. The story arc is in this case easy to lay out because the PCs are serving a group of powerful NPCs who send them on specific missions. When the PCs reach about 8th level I have in mind that this will all change and they'll be on their own, so I have no idea where the campaign will go from there.

    I guess that sounds most like your option b.

    (And yes, I am consciously giving out more XP than usual to make sure we can get to about 8th level in 6 months ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think the method and amount of x.p. awarding can be a way to keep a campaign on track, so long as everyone is on the same page with it.

      Delete
  3. In the past, I've always gone by "A," practical or not. However, I'm currently experimenting with (or getting ready to experiment with something closer to "C."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would be interested in hearing what you end up doing and how it works out.

      Delete
  4. My high school gaming could only be described as sandbox, while the games I ran during my first AF assignment were, under the influence of AD&D 2nd edition, a bit more railroady. My current Traveller and OD&D games are definitely sandbox style again.

    I don't design story arcs or big plot elements in advance... I scope out some general encounters, and the player's actions effect my NPCs, who in turn make plans...

    Given all that, I never think about ending a campaign. When real-life intrudes, the gaming drops off, but the 'verses we're exploring remain there...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have only recently started to think about how campaigns end when I start them because Tim (Gothridge Manor) and Rob (Bat in the Attic) have done such a great job of wrapping up our recent campaigns that they were GMing. As a player, it was very cool.

      Delete