29 Jan 2013

Table Top - The New Campaign

Well since Jan last year I picked up the Kingmaker campaign for the Pathfinder game system by Piazo. Every Wednesday I’d gather my books and head down and run a group of five wankers and a tall lady through one of the best campaigns I’ve ever had the opportunity to play, let alone run.

Last week, we finished the fifth book and we’re looking at starting the final book of the campaign. When me and Pale Rider were in his car awaiting for the cold to recede we yammered about what was going to be run next.

So far the crew has been playing one night a week for a few years. We’ve completed the second edition Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying campaign: The Thousand Thrones. We’ve completed another Piazo campaign: The Second Darkness and a D&D 3.5 Eberron campaign: Eyes of the Lich Queen. Now since we have little time to prep and plan, picking premade adventures is best for the Wednesday night crew.

So what am I looking at next?

The Warpstorm Trilogy (Rogue Trader)

The Frozen Reaches - Part 1 of the Warpstorm Trilogy
by Fantasy Flight Games 
I’ve been looking at this game system for a while. While we are familiar with the 40K RPG games, Rogue Trader is not a re-hash of another model game (Inquisition) or a zoom in of the table top (Deathwatch and Only War). It makes demands of the players to run a ship and participate in more then just being forced to investigate and hunt down something to kill. The game is designed to allow open sandbox play. Now this is a double edge sword. It can lead to games that spike quickly and slowly die at the hands of the players or a game master who’s not ready to run a larger world. On the otherhand the open concept allows for much moreroleplaying in a game system that has a huge focus on combat.

The Warpstorm Trilogy is looking good. The first book has an open world to politic and support as they suffer the threat of invasion. A few reviews I’ve read make comments that the first book can go on forever if players decide to touch on all the content. The follow up book is a heist style while the last one is a good tie up to close off the campaign.

The settings in each book are supposedly well developed and can be used in future campaigns and adventures. There are lots of groups and role playing opportunities that should be seeded in the previous adventures and can be used after the campaign. Who ever decides to run this campaign should look towards these books as a goal and find the seed you want to plant into the previous adventures before hand.

Horizon Adventures/Backroom Backstabs (Shadowrun)

You have to understand that I love me some Cyberpunk. When Shadowrun came out I was smitten. I have almost every 3rd edition Shadowun book printed. When 4th edition came out I avoided it like the plague and now they have 20th anniversary edition with 5th edition coming around the corner. Yet...

The new editions of Shadowrun look more accessible to new players and with Horizon Adventure or the Backroom Backstabs adventure lines I might go all electronic but I could see running these to step away from the d20. The idea of working with a Mega-Corp form the ground up and affecting how it grows and develops sounds brilliant, or working with a Mega-Corp as they recover and rebuild puts players in both cases in interesting places to have fun and run around.

The magic side of Shadowrun is the weakest element of the game for me, but it's the unique aspect that allows for the trump card in the adventures and provides players with a sense of special status. I may not like it as much as the rest of the ruleset but it does make Shadowrun more awesome, I'll just be the Street Samurai, Physical Adept or Rigger for life chummer.

The Second City (Ledgen of the 5 Rings)

L5R, or Lo5R is a favorite amongst our number. We liked 3rd edition it was much better then 1st edition and we ignored 2nd edition along with the d20 version. 3rd Edition was awesome, it was deep (and more complex), well rounded and very much needed after 1st edition. The jump was needed in our game group. Well now with Fourth Edition is keeping the depth of the 3rd and scrapping some of the strange complexity. Supplement books are coming our much quicker (another fault with 3rd edition) and now we have a fancy new box set.

The adventure takes place farther into the timeline then any other adventure. It takes place outside of Rokugan (the many Kingdom and primary setting of the game) and allows players to grow from "position as minor deputies in the Emerald Empire to major players within the Colonies, and perhaps back again."

So far not a hard sell and a full campaign for L5R has been far to long since the Frog City box set.

So here are the three ideas I was kicking around what do you think I should look at?