Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Lather, Rinse, Repeat...

I confess that this blog is on the stray from its pre-AD&D roots and I have no real excuse for it. All I can say is that my AD&D home campaign seems to be running nicely, and...well...

I've almost decided to revamp and refurbish my campaign setting.

It gives me that giddy-terrified feeling of standing at the edge of the precipice with the Imp of the Perverse upon my shoulder. There's been a lot of stuff going on in my life and it seems to be infecting my mind. Doubt, fear, grief - and just a little bit of hope. I've become Pandora's Box when I wasn't looking.

Those who have played in my games for the past decade will probably realize I haven't used more than a small fraction of my current setting. Those who know me well may realize I do not intend to create an entire milieu from scratch. There is a lot about my setting that I really do like - but, then there's the rest.

The project was named, for various reasons, Shattered Sky. Since that time, I've seen more than one gaming project with a disturbingly similar name. This does not make me happy. It also does not make me enthusiastic. Could I simply change the name? Yes, I could. But that doesn't address the problem.

Shattered Sky is the culmination of about 30 years of design and game play. I don't throw good ideas away - and I write a lot more than I tend to use. Recycling is important to me. Also, I come up with new ideas all the time. My campaign setting has evolved from the time I started working on it at about the age of ten. Before I knew what D&D was. So, it stands to some reason that it would evolve some more. My reasons and preferences have changed. The RPG industry has changed. I find myself craving a setting that combines the flavor of classic AD&D with the structure of modern Pathfinder. From what I've read, the forthcoming D&D Next system might actually be a good thing for my campaign - but I've sworn to stop giving WizBro my money. I will have to make do with the shelves of books and supplements I already have.

My overall goal is "Fun and Heroics." Or, maybe just, "Heroic Fun." And, not just what is fun for me, but also for the players. When I started to design Shattered Sky, I went for creating a world that I wanted to game in, and that contained a lot of "new stuff." Variants of the standard PC races started to appear - just for the sake of being different and suited to the established tone of the setting. Same for core classes. It was a lot of work that played to many of my weaknesses as a developer. Naturally, I got frustrated. The fun drained out of it all.

This is supposed to be about fun, right?

More to come...

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