Campaigns

A Campaign is the large story setting within which game sessions are run. It usually has major and minor story arcs that become more challenging as the players level up.

However, completing a campaign can take time, especially if your group is not meeting regularly.

Lost Mine of Phandelver

Progress

D&D Starter Set Campaign cover art
The D&D Starter Campaign

We have been running Lost Mine of Phandelver for around 6 months. So far we have completed 3 sessions of approximately 7 hours of gameplay. The players have completed all the side quests – including an improvised detour into Neverwinter! I an anticipate that we will finish the campaign up in around 4-5 hours, so a totally of around 21 hours of play. They should hit Level 5 during the last session.

Dungeon Master’s Perspective

The campaign is great for getting started quickly, especially if you use the pre-generated characters. Also the character sheets spell out all the levelling changes so you don’t lose much time working out what everyone gains when the level up.

As the Dungeon Master everything you need is in two booklets, and both are fairly quick to read through, probably a couple of hours each. Although I’d recommend reading the campaign booklet through twice. The first lesson I learnt was Players don’t do what you expect them to do!

A parchment with calligraphy and a wax seal on it contains campaign information
A letter to my players from their Archivist

As we only meet once every 6 weeks, I type up a humourous account of the sessions on this site. Also I have “The Archivist” write to the adventurers at the start of each session reminding them of all the quests they promised to do. He adopts a very much put upon tone in his letter which is a fun icebreaker to get everyone back into character. Don’t look too closely at the Hogwarts crest on the letter! I have limited craft supplies!


Storm King’s Thunder

Progress

The campaign cover art showing a storm giant
D&D Storm King’s Thunder Campaign

We are due to start Storm King’s Thunder at gaming session in May 2018. We have crazy diary schedules to try and find a few weekend between 6 people!

Dungeon Master’s Perspective

I initially looked at Princes of the Apocalypse as our first full campaign. However, I found the sandbox nature of the opening half of the campaign a little daunting. What I like about Storm King’s Thunder is that, whilst it is a sandbox, there are tools in the book to help the Dungeon Master.

There is a flowchart of the storyarcs, showing the levels the players should ideally be at when they find them. Also the book contains an indexed list of important NPCs. These probably sound, to an experienced DM, as trivial matters – however I found it reassuring when I was reading through the campaign.

I’ll let you know how we get on!