Friday, December 31, 2021

My Methodology: Twists and Turns

Two and a half years ago I ran my first campaign using the Savage Worlds rules and the campaign setting from The Sixth Gun comics. I called it Manifested Destinies; we played every other Tuesday, and it ran for nineteen sessions from late August of 2018 until early June of 2019. Although I didn't have as strong a plan for finishing the campaign as I would have liked, all in all I think it went well and the players seemed to enjoy themselves.

Campaign Notes for Manifested Destinies

That summer, during a gathering of old friends connected to the Concordia College (Moorhead) Gaming Club, I ran a one-shot in that setting, “Truth or Consequences,” a scenario that took place after the events of Manifested Destinies. It went pretty well, in my opinion, and so I started to brainstorm more adventures which I could use to follow that one, hoping that it would become an annual event. That lead to three new ones, which I posted on this blog while waiting for a chance to run them.

Truth or Consequences

Fortune and Glory

Lead or Gold

Smoke and Mirrors

During that summer I also started working on some scenarios that I thought I might run at my favorite local gaming convention, Con of the North. I had been running space fantasy scenarios for the 1st edition Pathfinder RPG, but the arrival of a 2nd edition for that game meant fewer and fewer people were playing the old ruleset. I was having fun with The Sixth Gun, and started reading some history of the world in the year 1887. One event that jumped out at me was the Golden Jubilee of Queen Victoria, which celebrated fifty years on the British throne for her. At that time, Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show was performing in London, too, and it seemed like a great opportunity for adventure. Those scenarios eventually became “The Depths of Depravity” and “A Midsummer Nightmare.”

The Depths of Depravity

A Midsummer Nightmare

I never did have a chance to run those scenarios at Con of the North, however. For one, the Covid-19 pandemic hit America hard, meaning that in-person gaming came to a temporary halt. For another, my son was born in March of 2020. That gave me, for a while at least, more time for writing. I'd also been reading the new Savage World Adventure Edition, and really liking it. For those reasons I took the plunge and wrote Treasure Hunter Adventures, the first in a series of supplements and adventures in that genre. I channeled much of my hobby time and effort into that endeavor, starting with that publication on 6 June 2020 and continuing to this day.

Treasure Hunter Adventures for the Savage Worlds RPG

During that year I did join an online campaign playing the 5th edition of Dungeons & Dragons. I did enjoy it, although for me online gaming was definitely not as good as playing in person. It scratched the itch for a while, but at the same time I was contemplating what I might want to run next. That's when I realized that I had plenty of material ready to go, using the ideas for the five scenarios linked above. Starting with them, and working on some other ideas that seemed to connect with them, I had the foundation for my current campaign, which I call Eldritch Conspiracies.

Campaign Notes for Eldritch Conspiracies

That brings us to the present. I'm still hoping to see my old college friends again this summer, if the danger of Covid can be kept well enough in check. Only time will tell, of course, but I'm working on an adventure for that, if and when it is possible.


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