Wednesday, January 13, 2016

What Adventures Have I Run So Far?

I figure I should make this list for two reasons: First, I've seen a lot of people ask about the order in which others have run various modules and products in their campaigns, and about the recommended order of such modules for new players or DMs. I think that having more people answer such questions could be useful, so as a noob with some recent success at keeping a group going, I might as well contribute to the discussion. Second, one of the main reasons I started this blog was to have a place for my actual play reports. If you look forward to that sort of thing, here's something to look forward to.

Carcosa campaign:
1. I only played one session of Carcosa, and it was a total mess due to my unfamiliarity with the system, but it was still a blast. Literally a blast: the game ended with one of the PCs firing a space alien area-of-effect weapon that killed almost every human in the hex. Technically, this was the first time I played LotFP.

Lamentations of the Fallen Lords campaign:
1. A Stranger Storm
2. A randomly-generated dungeon (2 sessions)
3. Tales of the Scarecrow
4. Tower of the Stargazer
5. In Heaven, Everything is Fine (from Forgive Us)
6. The Pale Lady
7. The Flayed King by GM Games and Oil & Water by Kevin A. Vito, two short dungeons in one session (plus a random table from Lamentations of the Gingerbread Princess)
8. Another randomly-generated dungeon
9. Fuck for Satan (I made it a dream sequence - the PCs didn't have to worry about dying in "real life" if they died in the dream, but they also only got to keep earned experience points and not actual treasure. Plus they had to put up with Fuck for Satan.)
10. No Salvation for Witches (3 sessions), with The Tower and The House of Snails added in (both from Green Devil Face)
11. The Monolith from Beyond Space and Time
12. At this point, the party moved to the big city, where I used a great deal of material from The Magnificent Joop van Ooms.
13. A Single, Small Cut
14. Death Love Doom
15. The Stygian Garden of Abelia Prem by Red Moon Medicine Show (2 sessions)
16. Lamentations of the Gingerbread Princess
EDIT: 17. Forgive Us (Played on January 16)

Bonus session:
1. Fantasy Fucking Vietnam from Green Devil Face - Between the second and third sessions of No Salvation for Witches, a few of us got together and played this as a one-shot using new characters. It was mostly separate from the Fallen Lords campaign, so I'm not counting it in the main list.

Would I say that this is a good order overall for most groups to play these modules? Not necessarily. A Stranger Storm, Tales of the Scarecrow, and Tower of the Stargazer are all great choices for the beginning of a campaign, but after that it becomes something of a crap shoot.

From what I've read, Better Than Any Man would probably be best at or near the beginning of a campaign, but if I run it I'm probably going to end up doing so quite a while from now, meaning I'll have to scale up the difficulty and otherwise adjust things for higher character levels. Making BTAM an early adventure might save one a lot of work fiddling with stats and such, and more importantly, BTAM was designed as a sort of entry-level sandbox. Some of its usefulness might be lost later in a campaign.

Since the party has leveled up so quickly (did I mention our campaign is insane?), I can't offer much advice about smoothly escalating the difficulty of a campaign using published modules beyond the sixth or so session of the campaign. If you want to want to use published LotFP modules as the foundation of your campaign, my advice would be to use one or more beginning modules (A Stranger Storm, Tower of the Stargazer, Better Than Any Man, and/or The Stygian Garden of Abelia Prem) broken up with some short material that is relatively friendly to smart low-level parties (Tales of the Scarecrow; In Heaven, Everything is Fine; A Single, Small Cut; The Tower; third-party material like The Flayed King or Oil & Water), and then progress to whatever you and your players want to do. Let the party plan and choose their own expeditions from among several options, and let them get in over their heads if that's what their choices lead to. Don't try to chart the path of the whole campaign. The players' actions should determine what happens next.

Honestly, what I usually do is list several adventures to my players with short, non-spoilerific descriptions, and just let them vote. The available adventures are "unlocked" by their in-game decisions and discoveries. Alternatively, you could put a bunch of adventure locations on a big hex map and just let the players stumble into things.

At any rate, these are the games we've played so far, and I look forward to sharing our strange stories with anyone out there who might enjoy them. If nothing else, I hope to get a few laughs out of you.

Please feel free to share your own opinions about "ordering" adventures, if you're so inclined.

This is the first time I've used the word "fuck" on this blog, isn't it?

No comments:

Post a Comment