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0. Do your players want this, too? If you haven't discussed a different playstyle I think they're reasonable to still expect the "sporty" style you were previously playing. That's why I think--even one session in--a change like this would be equivalent to starting a new campaign: same setting and same characters, but different game. If you have not ...


60

For your players Use other solutions Intelligence is only one of 3 mental stats, and the one that refers mostly to book-learning, puzzling, connection-making and thinking stuff through. However, lacking it doesn't make you a bumbling fool; it makes you someone who solves problems in other ways. For example, if it's crucial that the characters know who this ...


49

You're right, these three things are key to a true West Marches campaign: 1) There was no regular time: every session was scheduled by the players on the fly. 2) There was no regular party: each game had different players drawn from a pool of around 10-14 people. 3) There was no regular plot: The players decided where to go and what to do. It ...


44

Let the Baby Bird Leave the Nest Having rotated a campaign through many GM hands, the least disruptive thing we found was to not worry about it. Your turn at the helm is over. Our group has multiple people that like to GM. We created a world we really liked and want to continue exploring when it is someone else's turn to run a campaign. We decided that ...


42

I've run and played in games for about 30 years and been involved with many gaming groups, local gaming clubs, and large Organized Play campaigns in various states, so I have a decent historical survey of experience on this. Nomadic Peoples Migrating characters used to be a more common practice in The Old Days of D&D. Very long format campaigns with ...


40

On definitions Technically, one-shot can mean different things to different people. It doesn't always literally mean a story that can be wrapped up in one session (though that is usually the goal). However, it does always refer to an adventure that is shorter than a full campaign which can vary greatly in length. For the purposes of this answer I will be ...


36

The classic answer applies here as well: it depends. Sometimes, campaigns suggest that players start at a certain level, so the players are allowed to bring characters in that are made at that level. If the DM accepts a character that has been in previous campaigns and built up to this level, then obviously it's fair game to use it. If not, then there's ...


35

Recently in my campaign the party wanted to wipe out a large, well established, group of gnolls which took us into combat-as-war. How I handled it was: Step 1: Discuss Combat-As-War with the party When the party was beginning to plan their attack I had an out of character conversation with them about the differences between combat as sport and combat as ...


34

Given that the DM seems to dislike the idea of a change of cast, you are not feeling like playing this character like you're playing it now and your friend seems uninterested in changing his ways to let you have fun (but at least the DM seems cooperative enough), I'd like to suggest something that worked for me in a World of Darkness campaign I've been part ...


31

Don’t be subtle My preferred approach: “This is me, the DM. I see you have an empty language and favoured enemy slot. Word to the wise: giants.” The advantage of this is that it has about a 55% of avoiding the awkwardness that comes when your friend turned up ready for gridiron to a soccer match because of a misunderstanding about “football”. But only about ...


28

There are several things you can try to improve your experience with this game. That said, they all come with one big caveat: Do not approach this by telling your GM that he's "doing it wrong". There are a lot of different styles of GMing and playing, and even if the GM is using one that you personally don't like, that doesn't mean it's wrong or ...


26

Talk to your GM in private First step first. Call him in private, and give him feedback. Try to not be vague, actually point out what you didn't like, with examples that happened in game. If possible, also give a hint of what you were expecting, by saying how you would handle this if you were the GM on that situation. Don't be afraid about "losing a ...


24

The Real Problem: Your Character Has No Stake There is an open question about the game world (does magic exist?) which your PC and the other PC have staked out opposite sides of. The action of the game so far revolves around the investigation of that question (and genre conventions suggest the answer will be yes) To be honest, this is not a good situation ...


23

I polled the DM's at two of my local hobby shops (a total of about 30 people). The consensus was yes you can bring a character over provided it is similar level. As far as someone creating a character they said that when a new person joins an existing group they almost always give that person the levels to make them similar to the group. That is the most ...


21

Erik's answer is a great general solution to your problem, but there are a couple of specific tactics you can use here as well. Put Your Eggs in More Baskets Right now, you're relying on a single skill or small group of skills in order to give your players information about the game world. This is naturally going to lead to situations where nobody has the ...


20

Like Roguelikes or GTA-likes, West-Marches-Style games are of a genre fashioned after a particular semi-eponymous classic exemplar, in this case this home game. Like those other founding-work-based-genres, there aren't so much hard-and-fast rules that define the boundaries of the term, but rather the closer a given game is to that progenitor or other famous ...


20

Sometimes the game you are playing simply isn't the game you believed you signed up for. Happened to me few times, see first paragraph here for an example. You talked to the DM and to the fellow player and it changed nothing. I believe they are trying; at least from your description we can assume good faith on the DM side. What you can do now is to talk to ...


18

Four solid benefits of a one shot One shots and campaigns serve different gaming needs, so I slightly disagree with your question's point (in paragraph 3 and at the end) that they are somehow in opposition to each other. They fulfill different needs for the players at the table, to include the DM. A given gaming group can do both! Four things that a one-...


17

A "Living" campaign is one of the old RPGA-run organized play campaigns designed for you to use and advance a character across multiple play opportunities at public events like RPG conventions and game days, in the same shared world and using officially sanctioned adventures. (For you kids nowadays, the RPGA was a RPG fan organization sponsored by TSR, ...


11

It appears from your example that you've been playing the adventure with a group of 3 characters, without tuning down the encounters. If you do so, faster leveling is expected. Rationale D&D 4e's adventures use encounters that have been balanced against a party of 5, which is the expected number of players. If you have a party of 6 or a party of 4 (or, ...


11

"Living campaign" is a common term for a "shared-universe" campaign played by an extended community of participants, usually mediated by an organization like the RPGA. The idea is that players from all over the world can participate in the evolution of a shared setting, either developing organically based on an aggregate of player actions or pre-determined ...


11

First, you need to talk with Steve. This isn't just a "Steve's terrible" issue. He was working really well with the group as it was originally. See if you can have a discussion and find out what's changed for him. If it's easy, see if you can fix it, but even if it's not, talking it out a bit is almost certain to give you a better idea of how to move ...


11

I'll start from the position of "how can I get my character into this plot". And I'd suggest set your character up to fail. The key here is that you aren't your character. By using player knowledge you can arrange it so that your character's motivations and knowledge set the character up on a path the character wouldn't want to go down. Instead of asking ...


10

Generally… The closest thing to a general, data-driven answer you're going to get is probably going to be from looking at guidance for TV writers. RPGs themselves are enough of a niche hobby that I doubt you'll find good research specific to the medium. But, really, you don't need a general answer. You need an answer for your group. Here are some ...


10

The short answer: yes, it's as manageable as any other party with different motives/alignments. Though advancement through the guilds is vastly different you can simply adapt the situations to make it count for everyone. Here's an example of some elements that can be pulled from the same situation to apply for some of the guilds. The party stops a ...


9

In case you decide to stick with the character and find a motivation to go along with the plot: which means now I'm on a quest for magical items my character doesn't even believe in. Your character is a pirate. Aren't pirates interested in finding treasure? Your character might not believe in magic powers. But your character might believe that there are ...


9

For a language, make it matter now I'll also advocate the "just tell them" approach, if only because it is very, very hard to make sure that clues and hints are as clear to the players as they are to you, the DM. And it's not like the giants are a huge secret in Storm King's Thunder. But I totally get not wanting to be so blatant, so I have one ...


8

Your instincts of "the man who knew too little" are spot on. Conspire with your players against/with your PCs. Narrate, the deep rich tapestry of the plot and character interactions to shape how your players will ... maneuver their dunces with the expectation that the results of their actions will be much better than a naive reading would produce. By making ...


8

Characters are your own creative material, and unless the DM has made you sign some unusual intellectual property rights waiver, the character is yours to use and re-use as you see fit. (hint: Don't sign weird intellectual property rights waivers, no matter how good the DM is) The real question is - are there any situations where a DM will refuse to let ...


8

This question really heavily depends on your groups style of play, frequency of moves and duration and frequency of sessions. Frequency of sessions: the more often you play and the shorter your sessions are, the more often you will use the End of Session move and thus earn XP at a faster rate. Frequency of moves: the more often a move involving a roll is ...


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