Thinking in terms of quests helps focus the adventurer solidly where it belongs: on the player characters. An adventure isn’t something that can unfold without their involvement. A plot or event can can unfold without the characters involvement, but not an adventure. An adventure begins when the characters get involved, when they have a reason to participate and a goal to accomplish. Quests give them that.
James Wyatt – Dungeon Masters Guide, 4th edition
I’m coming to love the concept of quests. When 4e was in the works, some of the previews were talking about quest cards that you could give to the players. That never really materialised, in part, I think, because of fear of fans reacting badly to CCG or MMO affectations. Looking back at my campaign now, I can see how they would have been a great way to cement the characters into the world. I especially like the idea of player generated quests. Ambitions if you like.
the quests in the modules are pretty thin, and there’s obvious reasons why that would be the case. I think for the next installment (Nightwyrm Fortress) I’m going to put more effort into quests. I’d like to see each pc working towards 3 or 4 simultaneously. To be honest, I’d be prepared to drop some of the more repetitive combats to accomodate extra xp through the quest device.
Here’s some bullet point examples. Maybe I’ll flesh out a few of these with help from my guys…
Found a wizards school
Tame the tarrasque
Raise an army of eladrin
Build a new Nerath
Raise a child
Become a God
Release a primordial
Close the Far Realm
Obviously, these are long quests that could frame an entire tier of play, or even all three. I’d then break these down into smaller quests, and before you know it, there’s an entire campaign in seed form.
I don’t imagine for one minute I’m the first to spot this, but did you see that the WotC site now includes a name generator. It’s simple but effective. Here’s what I was greeted with:
We’ve generated a name for your
D&D character. It is…
(Male Shifter Druid)
Also known as…
Vicdak the Fortold
Nomad the Fortold
Crypt-Kicker Vicdak Nomad
Crypt-Kicker Vicdak Nomad the Fortold
Crypt-Kicker Nomad the Fortold
Vicdak of the Staves
Vicdak Nomad of the Staves
Crypt-Kicker Vicdak of the Staves
Crypt-Kicker Vicdak Nomad of the Staves
Pretty cool no?
If you are in any way a fan of digital tools at your tabletop, or when you’re deep into your prep then you need to pay attention.
It’s packaged in with MS Office 2007 and frankly, it’s worth the price of admission on it’s own. I’ve only scratched the surface of it’s capabilities and it’s spurring me on to create more gaming goodness than I really have time for.
Any tips or tricks you know of?
And I turn over the page and find even more two year old lists.
Steps (from Earthdawn)
Hollow Earth Expedition
D&D core books
Deadlands: Hell on Earth
Best In Genre
Sci fi – Star Wars
Fantasy – Earthdawn
Horror – Call of Cthulhu
Pulp – Spirit of the Century
Modern – Unknown armies
Supers – Mutants and Masterminds
Mostly, I’d stand by these lists even today.
So I came across a list I wrote exactly two years ago:
My Top 5 Games
2: Mage: the Ascension
3: Castle Falkenstein
4: Spirit of the Century
5: Warhammer FRP
Honourable mentions go to:
Over the Edge, D&D, Passages, Star Wars, Whispering Vault, Savage Worlds.
I think it’s fair to say the list wouldn’t look like that now. In the time since I wrote that I’ve only played one of those (SotC). D&D has gone from ‘bubbling under’ straight to number 1. I’d now include MongTrav on the list. Passages? Really, what was I thinking?!