Thursday, January 18, 2018

Lord of the Rings: a Master Class in Campaign Planning

Every GM dreams of that magnum opus campaign, the one that's so epic it's unlike anything they've done before, which people will talk about for years, and which they'll never top again. That campaign that's epic in scope, that's rich in the world you've built, with fully-realized characters and deep, instense storylines that your players will never forget.

In short, every GM dreams of running their own Lord of the Rings.

And yet, a lot of people have discussed over the years how Lord of the Rings doesn't work as a proper fantasy role playing campaign. It's too divided in its stories. The goal is too big. It doesn't allow proper dressing of in-game party dynamics. The characters are too level-diverse. Gandalf is only 5th level (a claim dating back to the old Dragon Magazine, and entirely ludicrous and unsustainable if you have a tiny bit of brain cells).

Here's the truth: Lord of the Rings is a master class in a role playing game campaign, both in its novel and its film versions. Indeed, it's particularly salient to an old school style of play, where "game balance" meant "everyone's having fun," as opposed to, "everyone's of the exact same power level." Take a look at how Lord of the Rings as a master class in home RPG campaign design begins and comes together with The Fellowship of the Ring.

http://wastedlandsfantasy.blogspot.com/2018/01/fellowship-of-ring-lord-of-rings-and.html

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