Wednesday, December 19, 2012

It is Finally Time to Make my Own World!

For those of you who might not know, I am an educator in the public school system (half time teacher half time assistant principal). I have run our school gaming club for six or seven years now, and have loved doing it. It has been frustrating at times, but very worth it. The game club has also been my only real source of gaming in the past half decade with but a few exceptions, and this has colored much of my gaming approach as of late.

So when we started this year I was using my somewhat modified AD&D approach, which I am beginning to transfer over to a purely Classic D&D, Moldvay/Cook rules set to make things simpler and freer for us all. My default campaign for the longest time has been Greyhawk, but it's simply been a default, it is not like I have done anything special with it. I also love the B series and decided to start this new group with B1 In Search of the Unknown. One of the pluses of restarting with a new group of gamers every two years (we are a two year junior high school 8th and 9th grade) is being able to run the same modules on a two year basis.

This year as I've transitioned to a more Classic D&D ruleset, I've considered switching my campaign to Mystara. The Mystara Cyclopedia and the Vaults of Pandius have some great info on Mystara, as I don't own the Mystara supplements, just some of the modules set within it. But I was reading some the information there, and began to think again about starting my own campaign world. I've tried this before, but it just feels like now is the right time to begin a project that may carry through the end of my gaming days. I've tried this before, but always get overwhelmed several hundred pages into my creation. Yeah, several hundred pages.  I think I've been going about world creation all wrong--at least wrong for me.

See, I read the Mystara info, and I love the intricate level of detail, the storylines, the mythos, the geography, the history, the biology, the magic, and on and on. So when I try to start a world I try to put all that information in from the start. I sort of feel the need to answer all of the players questions up front. But do I really need to do that? No, of course not. In fact I know that there is another way to design a campaign. I've just never done int that way.

Rome wasn't built in a day, and neither was Mystara, Greyhawk, the Forgotten Realms, Blackmoor or any other major campaign setting. Each in fact began a bit differently. Greyhawk started as a dungeon, that expanded into a city so adventurers had a place to rest and refuel between forays into the dungeon, Mystara started a simple map of the Known World, on which DMs could hang their creative hats. Forgotten Realms started as the place Ed Greenwood set his fictional stories that he wrote as a child. Only later was it used as the setting for his D&D adventures.

I think I will start mine as a town. It will be the place from which all my adventurers hail, and will be modest in size. My initial thought is to post the updates here just to let you know how things are going. It will also be using the Moldvay/Cook rules, but I may use some stuff from the B/X Companion later on. I'm not too fond of the BCMI / RC rules though, but they may make an appearance over time. I'm also going to try and create all my own adventures for this new world, so that the place is completely homebrew, except for the rules in the Classic Edition.

And my first act of creation ... the name of the town shall be ...



ADD Grognard said...

Hey man, long time no type :)

Congrats are crafting your own world. Always the best way to go imho.

I will offer a gift if you are not already reading it:

Campaign Mastery

And this jumped out the minute I started scrolling:

One of the two guys who used to run the site has departed but the quality of the content has remained high.

I decided to go way 'old school' all the way back to my original roots-wargaming and conflict simulators. It's been a blast and so many new things have developed in the hobby that I was blown away by some of the games coming out of that scene.

Ok, back to the front lines...

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