Starting a new campaign isn’t just about building a world, coming up with some story details, and telling the players what characters to make. It involves resolving dilemmas and making hard choices.
How do you start a campaign? Well, that all depends on what you mean by “start.” There’s lots of ways to start a campaign. Let’s start by talking about how you start starting a campaign. Preplanning and premises.
Every campaign needs something to hold the players together. That’s because players are constantly trying to blast apart. It’s like nuclear physics. Which is why you need gluons. Or glue. Or tortured, mixed metaphors. Whatever.
Designing a campaign is like ordering dinner at The Olive Garden. Except for the parts that aren’t like that at all. Which is most of the parts. Anyway, let’s talk about campaign structures, about the Shape of your game and the Glue that holds it together.
As Henry VIII once basically said, “I’M POPE NOW!” That’s right. Welcome to my church. Now, let’s get dogmatic about campaigns, settings, and adventure paths.
This is it, this is my everything. This is why I’m such a great teacher. This is everything I know about RPGs and GMs and the secret order and structure that underlies them.
When is an NPC not an NPC? When it’s a villain. Because villains are more than mere NPCs. Because villains create plots. And I don’t mean evil schemes. I mean stories.
It started as a simple question about how to juggle two plot lines. It became an entire treatise on building campaigns with multiple plot arcs. This article is the first ever article under the category “How to Build a F$&%ing Campaign.”