Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Please help me with my first ever campaign

  1. #1

    Please help me with my first ever campaign

    I need some help creating a story for my players. I am a long time story teller, but first time LOTR story teller. I'm a huge fan, and would like to explore some fairly untouched areas of tolkiens story.

    My Players are: A dwarf craftsman (smith) from the blue mountains, and exiled human warrior of rohan, and a Took craftsman (carpenter).

    Year: 2845.

    The plot of the game is as follows:
    Obsessed with ring lore, Saruman the white hires the Dwarf smith as a mentor to teach him the art of metal work. While learning the craft (which will lead to the eventual creation of his own ring), he becomes somewhat of a "Friend" to the dwarf, secretly pumping him for information.

    When he learns of Thrain's disappearance this year, he shows concern... in truth, he is afraid that Either thrain was capture and lost the ring... or, more probably, that Thrain entered Moria. Per the appendicies, few knew the fate of the dwarf rings, and many thought that the thrors ring was lost in moria... saruman would likely believe that Thrain went in after it. He might want to beat Thrain to it, or even believe that thrain failed the attempt and see his vanishing as proof that the ring was down there.

    Acting concerned for the Dward, Saruman will have the Human PC join for a quest to search for Thrains fate, promising him his honor back if he succeeds. The Took will join, because, after all, a took wants to go, deep down inside .

    Here is my problem... I eventually want my PC's to end up in Moria with Gandalf. But I don't want to send them there right away. I think for a new group, a new story teller, and a bunch of "first level" PCs, moria is a bit much to chew. So i'm not certain as to what to do first. I need some ideas for quests they can attempt prior to this step of the journey... but I want it to tie VERY strongly to the story. One of my biggest flaws as a DM is I'll come up with a great plot and a great quest... but then feel like its to much for the start of a new campaign... and throw "fluff" stories and quests at my players to get them ready for it. These trite quests are only there to get the group familiar with the system, their PC's, and get them to the power level that they are ready for my real story. This always fails, as it is clear that they are just "killing time" in the game. I want some intro quests that will tie to this story, and really make them feel like it built up naturally to this point. Not just sending them to collect random animal teeth for xp.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    So why don't you advance the PC's to the level of, or just one below the level of your anticipated campaign?

    You may also break the campaign up into legs - especially if there is a lot of travel between where they start and where they end up (i.e. Moria) - and have each leg represent a sub-plot.

    This is how I wrote my campaign Triumph of the Witch-king (now called Chronicles of the North). I had my PC's start in Tharbad and make a quest for Rivendell. I broke the road to Rivendell into three chapters, and set each chapter with six scenes. At the end of each chapter, I gave an advancement.

    In each scene I had heavy tests for travel and weariness. They met rogues; barrow-wights; orcs; wolves and Rhudaurim. Finally they made it to the fences of Rivendell and needed to make tests to get Elrond's attention. So half way through our adventure, my PC's are level 3 and have a good feel of what the wilds of northern Eriador are like.

    Meeting Elrond, they are then told what they need to do to achieve their goal. Again I set it up on the map of where they are, where they needed to get to, and broke it into three Chapters with six scenes each. This time they had to face travel and weariness, trudging through lands held by the enemy (Rhudaur), a frozen river crossing with little equipment, and finally a whole regiment of Angamarim horsemen. At the end of these chapters, my PC's were level 6 and were much more capable to take on their main threats.

    Bottom line is, think about each part of their journey and what they will need to overcome. Entering the Misty Mountains is no easy task, and PC's with a bunch of great combat skills will fall quite nicely from high cliffs without climb skill. It is in this way that you will see your players round out their characters. Climb, jump and observe are great skills to have in Moria, too! Tireless is a wonderful trait to have when your PC has to ride in the saddle for 8 hours a day (or more), or suffer weariness penalties of varying degrees based on their Stamina rolls. And don't just let them sleep to get rid of the weariness... make it a test on how well they set camp in the conditions they face via Survival. If they do not set a good resting site, they only are able to remove a number of steps from their weariness.

    This might seem nit-picky, but it adds to the stress of the characters when they need to make a test, or fight a combat, and they are lagging due to a -2 weariness penalty on everything they do. It can be very fun for a GM, too!

    My players are all at 6-7th level now and you, as GM, will find that this is a good point where you will now need big guns to challenge them.

    Narrator: Darkening of Mirkwood | Chronicle of the North | Tempest Rising | To Boldly Go | Welcome to the 501st!
    Esgalwen [♦♦♦♦○○] Dmg 9/11 | Edge 8 | Injury 16/18
    Nimronyn [Sindarin Pale gleam] superior keen, superior grievous longsword - orc bane, Foe-slaying
    Shadow bane, Skirmisher

  3. #3
    I did a campaign that started with the characters being basic starting characters. I had 4 characters, all from the same village in Arthedain. (I started in Third Age 1969). One was a Minstrel, and the other 3 were all Craftsmen.

    The adventure started with a raid on their village. The characters banded together to help fight off the attack. Then they joined the hunt for the raiders, eventually finding out that it was mercenaries from Angmar. They then went to Fornost to bring the news. They were then recruited to help the kingdom.

    I then flashed forward 5 years for the rest of the campaign, and gave the group all 6 advancements to get them ready.

    The rest of the campaign involved the war with Angmar, and the fall of Arthedain.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts