Hey /tg/. I'm in the process of designing a campaign. The world is empty, deserted and full of steppes and mountain chains. A civilization used to flourish here, but it got starved out long ago due to an ill-formulated wish. The fortresses and temples built long ago now crumble and are thought of as dangerous, ominous places. The villages that exist are doing fairly okay, but shun the idea of forming a country again.The characters are supposed to leave their hometown and seek out the fabled wise man, able to grant any wish. It's mainly supposed to be a platform for the characters' psychological transformations - I want the players to figure out what is truly their characters' greatest desire. I've been collecting visual inspo and assembling together a soundtrack. I'd love it if you gave it a listen and suggested further tracks to add. Please listen on shuffle, otherwise similar tracks will be clumped up together. The feeling I'm going for with it is melancholy and nostalgy for the lost greatness.I'll also bo be grateful for any suggestions.I'll be dumping my visual inspo, also feel free to post anything you feel applies.The playlist: https://open. spotify.com/user/1195661635/playlist/6apJc4Jlw36Rpyr1tIrjIg?si=sxoqb9akQ-i1bHXBNrEUrA . (remove space)TL;DR: listen to my soundtrack, add more tracks, make suggestions, post visual inspo.
How does the campaign end?
>>63012315I have some concept art I liked from Black Desert Online that might fit your aesthetic.
>>63012456Ideally, the players get to the wise man and it turns out he's an ogre - an ancient, sworn enemy of the people, thought all to have died. So either try and kill him - probably not a good idea - or just get one wish each. The characters then get back down from the highest mountain and find their world horribly twisted by their wishes. This is where the campaign ends and ideally another one begins, where they try to fix their fuck-ups. Or not- maybe they like the new world better, either way they'll get to explore it i the second campaign.
>>63012480Thanks man, loving some of those
>>63012524>>63012494Do players know that it was a wish that destroyed the region? Because if they do I'd never risk asking a wish (especially not from a sworn enemy)
>>63012540I don't think this is from BDO, but whatevs. >>63012529No problem. I love 'steppe / desert' settings.
>>63012315>>63012494Does it have sub-arcs? Where will the journey take them? Why are they even leaving? Is the water chip of the village broken or something?I think it's a cool idea, but I think it lacks structure. You should know what will happen so you can set up great set pieces. It also helps with pacing, the players feeling like they're getting ever closer to their goal, instead of running around the wastes for a year and than suddenly learning where the guy is.How high fantasy is this? I'm envisioning a sand river complete with the great sandfalls (waterfall) at the foot of an ancient structure they have to get to.A great mountain/hill they have to scale only to discover it's the back of an ancient turtle.But from your pictures you seem to be going for more tame stuff.
>>63012540That's a valid question. Maybe they shouldn't know - the way I envisioned it is there is an old legend (actually it's a bigger one containing the story of the ogre war) about it, but maybe the legend should omit the wish part, making the disaster part of "the destructive and careless ogre's plan". Then when they leave the wise man's cave, they can trip over the tablet detailing the events in a more historically accurate manner, maybe? So they dread what they did even before they've seen it?>>63012646Hey,Your questions are all valid. I was thinking they leave their hometown for the biggest town/crossroads market city around to look for help with a problem (dead babies? dead plants? dead animals?), only to learn that the problem is much more widespread. So they form up a team with 1-2 NPCs, as the eldest of the market town cannot think up an answer and more and more reports of disaster are coming in, and head for the faraway highest mountain, where according to legend the wise man makes his home. They know where the wise man is from the beginning, it's just really far away. Think Heart of Darkness. The closer they get, the harsher the environment is and they get ever closer to their nature and learning about themselves and each other. I'm thinking of making one NPC turn on them at some point. I do intend to make each session about a single particular event they encounter. So the first one would start as they're saying their goodbyes, and end when they form up a team. Then maybe the next one is them making camp in a ruined fortress and finding out that it's inhabited. That's the way I wanted to structure it - just get rid of wandering around, save for maybe one session where the focus would be them getting lost.
>>63012646>>63013201This is a low-fantasy world, the only knowledge of magic died with the ogres. Some artifacts of theirs remain, like amulets or enchanted armor, but nothing too OP, just some quirky effects like making flowers grow wherever you go or emitting a light glow.Every session, the mountain can be seen a little bit closer. When they finally get there, reality is distorted. Up to now, it was a seemingly no-magic world; but the mountain itself makes weird time skips and illusions happen. The session when they get up the mountain and into the wise man's dwelling would ideally be one long 12-hour marathon.Sorry if the post itself is not structured properly or at all, I'm writing this in class. HopeI got the point across.
>>63013201>skipping to the good stuff instead of travel travelYeah you got the right idea. For distance, I'd suggest giving them landmarks when they head out. You know, 'You have to go through the crossroads, pass the scorpion desert, over the haunted hills, through the caves of madness' type of deal. Like in the lord of the rings. So instead of >It's only two weeks worth of journey leftthat way, the players have something with more substance they can measure their progress by. The things in between those milestones you'd be able to pad and stretch out as much as needed.>look for help with a problemsince you want to run a character driven campaign, you probably don't need a greater overarching plot that's developing. What you will need however is motivation for the characters to go along for the ride. Maybe this magi-plague has affected each of them in some way. Some lost their business and became poor, someone lost their loved one, someone perhaps wants to be the village elder and believes curing this thing will let him shortcut the proccess. You'd need to discuss those with the players to give them a basis.From there you can challange their views along the way. Bringing back the dead is potentially very dangerous and destroys the natural order.>have them run into a village where something like that failed and now they're all cursed somehowThe poor have a much simpler, happier and easier life than the rich - free from assasins that target them and intrigue to steal their money.>have them stop, or perhaps help with a plot against a rich dudeBeing the one everyone seeks answers and help from (village elder) is difficult, and a wrong answer (from someone with little experience) can lead to disastrous consequences. >have them run into a child 'king' who thinks he's ready for the throne
>>63013209>This is a low-fantasy worldThen I have to ask what system you're running this in? Because anything DnD related and you have a low magic setting with a group that is chock full of magic - creating a dissonance between the setting and the actual party. Unless that is intended.
>>63012315I feel like the "Against the Wicked City" setting has material for you, OP.http://udan-adan.blogspot.com/p/against-wicked-city.htmlIt's a not!Central Asia with nomads, trade routes, a corrupt metropolis and clockwork gadgets.
>>63013849Probably Savage Worlds. Have had good experiences with low-fantasy settings in it before. I do plan on adding some systems of mine, though>>63013868Thanks, I'll check it out! Sounds awesome>>63013837Thanks for all the advice, friendo. It's real good. I do plan on discussing each players' character with them beforehand, to make sure I can fit the quest to their needs and to sieve out any stupid ideas they might have about their characters>I am secretly the descendant of an ancient line of kings from before the disasteryeah no
>>63013849>>63013999And don't get me wrong with the systems, I don't plan on reinventing the game, just adding clever, thematic ways of determining initiative order, also managing physical and psychological stress since I mean for that to be one of the main problems characters will be facing during the long journey
I got one last thing to add.Since it's all about characters and their progress and choice at the end, keep in mind that they can't actually die, or the campaign is out the window.In order to keep battles interesting and not give them a feeling of plot armor, one houserule I've used before is once a character dies in combat - however the system defines that - they are simply out of the fight. Then once the fight is over - they are still alive just badly hurt and with a long lasting (or permanent) injury / hindrance. What it is depends on the system. Perhaps it doesn't have an expression in the mechanics, but during roleplay or exploration. (this is where it helps having a general idea what lies ahead of the party to customize injuries).>Your leg is fucked, you can't jump that chris, we have to get around now.
>>63013201I think you shouldn't outright tell them that it was a wish - but let them piece that info together from some pieces. Some story of a great hero who wanted to fix the world, but brought a great calamity, preferably in form of a poem. Weird cave paintings depicting the process. A fragment of an ancient treatise about the dangers of wishing for more than you can chew.
>>63013999>>63014235Good idea! I'll keep that in mind. >>63014409also a god idea. you're being very nice today fa/tg/uys
>>63012315Look into the original Nier soundtrack, the one for the first game.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2GvBbbYcD8ohttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pt6_EXl_p2Mhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WEOaWX_TFLE
>>63013849>low magic setting with a group that is chock full of magicrestict access to caster classes?
>>63014948Awesome, I'll give it a listen once I get home
>>63012315This thread reminds me of a similar one that was posted roughly a year ago. Some anon wanted to make a campaign that was centered around a river that was going all around the world and had no beginning and no ending if I remember correctly. On both banks of the river there was a desert, I think, that it stretched to the horizon and the anon back then also wanted to include Buddhism in some way and the whole campaign revolved around traveling to a far off location, if memory serves me right, and around the psychological transformation of the PC's as well. Sadly I forgot to screencap it back then. So if anybody has a screencap I would really appreciate it if it would get posted.Long story short. Good luck with your campaign anon, it reminded me a bit of this other campaign. It sounds very interesting.
>>63020132Hey, thanks! I'll try and give some updates if we do it successfully
>>63021397Hope I was able to post something usable!
OP here again. any of you tried The Shadow of Yesterday? Think it would fit into this campaign?
>>63012315Sounds like a Ryuutama game
>>63012315>The world is emptySounds dull.
>>63012369...how? What the fuck?
>>63028905Yeah well that's we're omitting travel time and skipping straight to the meat, unless the players specifically express the need to have a nothing-but-banter session (which would be very cool IMO, if just once)
>>63012315Hey OP, I've just finished listening to the whole list, on shuffle as you recommended. On the whole I really enjoyed it. I even took some of it for my own lists, mainly Bastion to check out and Journey/Tape/LastOfUs for my own ambience lists.Some input from me:- I feel like the list lacks a general theme. The mood ranges from sad to energetic to relaxing. The Bastion soundtracks for example are clashing with the Zelda flute. I enjoyed both, but maybe split the list into several mood sections or different lists altogether? Changing a list is easy enough while GMing.- you used many well-known and/or current video games. I understand that because some of the most beautiful soundtracks are from video games, but are you sure your players don't know them? I, for example, adore the WoW old Barrens soundtrack, but listening to it anywhere outside WoW would completely throw me off-balance.- now this might just be me: I find voice-heavy ambience tracks to be distracting while RPing. How do others feel about this?- and if you'd like: I've created two ambience lists for my cthulhu campaigns, one for day time and one for night/danger time. The latter is probably not useful for you, but maybe the first?Day: open.Spotify .com /user/misterolga/playlist/0zekWqr8UKQPHNcdjWtiJX?si=CZ57IK_URyGlzXzg_oS8PwNight: open.Spotify .com /user/misterolga/playlist/69OGE8vtEKOgXIn1xRzLzk?si=HvKjohslTtmSM-7NIiu2Tw
>>63030929Love your input. Probably going to split the music into three lists: wilderness, combat/danger and city. I feel like the voice-heavy tracks would be OK in a city setting. As per the video games, some of my players know some of the games - one has played The Last of Us, one has played just a little bit of WoW. But our previous experience suggests we don't find game or movie soundtracks that distracting, but rather a cool nod to the other franchises. Thanks again!
>>63029924A whole lotta diggin', laddie.
>>63030352You know, you could easily throw together a pretty cool pointcrawl at that point, instead of totally handwaving travel to get to dungeon. This thread actually inspired me to make a map for the setting outlined, so feel free to use it. You get an encounter check (a simple yes encounter, or no encounter, which can be resolved by whatever dice) then have points of importance in each point. My full map has a hex crawl to the south that has a Kathmandu analogue, along with a mashup of a bunch of other nearby asian countries' climates