D&D 5E "I Prefer for My 5E D&D Campaigns to Have a Pre-Determined Ending Point" (a poll)

True or False: "I Prefer for My 5E D&D Campaigns to Have a Pre-Determined* Ending"

  • True.

    Votes: 13 15.1%
  • False.

    Votes: 73 84.9%


CR 1/8
True. The story may or may not have some sort of directionality (eg, an AP or whatever). But I've almost always had to keep it within a set amount of real-world time to play out.

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Here is the premise for today's poll (poll #16 for those who want to keep count). . .

True or False: "I Prefer for My 5E D&D Campaigns to Have a Pre-Determined* Ending"

* "Pre-determined" can mean, "when we reach a certain level," "until a certain date or number of sessions," "when we complete an AP, a certain number of adventures, or achieve a particular in-game plot goal" etc. . .
I rarely have a preset... but I often warn of a range (I voted false)

My last two campaigns I said "This will most likely not go over 10th level" and "I have a big switch coming that will most likely change the course of the campaign as a surprise about half way through but I wouldn't plan on getting over 12th or 13th and we might not hit 10th"

the first of those went to 16, and the xp the last night we played put them within a few hundred pts of 17th...
the second of those the twist came at 7th level we then played twice and had a tragedy out of game cause us to abandon the campaign.

insert something here about best laid plans of mice and men

I run a very player directed campaign. If I throw in stuff about a city dominated by vampires and they don't follow up on it, well that sucks for the citizens of the city. The campaign just won't follow that thread.
1st... barvo on the sucks/vampire pun intended or not
2nd yeah that seems like the way I run things too


Mod Squad
Staff member
I neither prefer it nor do I have anything against it - some have a predetermined end, others do not, depending on the desires for that particular campaign.


Not your screen monkey (he/him)
I said False because I don't really have a preference. Some campaigns end up with a natural ending point - end of an AP, end of a time frame, etc. But I'm not averse to continuing past that or playing in/running an open-ended campaign.


A suffusion of yellow
I’ve been using Fronts, so I do have an overarching metagoal and various milestones as different factions move towards that meta-goal - however whether any given faction (including the PCs) succeeds or fails to achieve their goals is up to the PCs

Mind of tempest

(he/him)advocate for 5e psionics
I am not against pre-determined basic plots like the final thing is trying to stop a demon invasion but I want it to be equally likely that we win or lose or other possible endings.

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
There's usually a scene or encounter I want to run in the future of the game, but the outcome will always be based on the player's actions.

the Jester

Not only is this false for me, it's a thing that will absolutely and actively ruin a game for me, either as player or DM, unless it's handled so well as to be invisible to me.

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