The campaign you will never get to run

I always wanted to bring my old Planescape campaign to a proper conclusion. We started when the boxed set came out in 1994, just me DMing and two friends playing. Lots of Sensate philosophy, Egyptian myth, playing with the theme of the "eternal return." Graz'zt was the main villain, but he remained hidden behind a thieves' guild, another lesser demon lord, a fallen deva, the god Set, and a few others. By the time we moved for college, they'd slain the patsy demon lord and were 14th level, but the big reveal never happened.
 

Imaculata

Adventurer
I've had ideas for a Jurassic Park campaign, and most of my players are big fans of the movie. I've read the book, and love both the book and the movie, so I've always pondered about running a JP campaign. But the problem with running one are multiple.

-The players will already know what is going to happen, so I feel like I should come up with a different reason why the dinosaurs escape. However, it would need to be rooted in realism and science.
-I don't want it to turn into a dino shoot 'm up.
-What to do with the original characters? Replace them with the player characters?
-The book never came with a map of Islar Nublar, and the map of the movie is inconsistent with how the book describes the island. I wish I had one that honored both, so that both people who saw the movie and those that read the book, can enjoy the campaign all the same.
-I feel the campaign should be more than just escape from dino island. Just like the movie and book had overarching themes, I believe a proper JP campaign should too.
-I would need multiple plot beats to keep things moving.

All of these problems can be overcome. But its a lot of work. With all the other ideas I have for campaigns, this one is simply on hold.
 
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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
What to do with the original characters?
That’s the easiest question of all- just because it’s JP inspired doesn’t mean it happens in the same continuity. The PCs become the original characters.

...what if...you borrow a little inspiration from real world events?

So, the driving force behind the res-saur-rection program was a drug lord who wanted to have the most exotic critters in the entire damn world. Maybe just as super-exclusive scenery, maybe as part of his hunting stock. Maybe both.

They escape because the cartel was busted up and the greater estate left unmonitored. Time + lack of maintenance = dinos on the loose.
 
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77IM

Explorer!!!
OK, so not counting all the excellent published adventures I want to run someday (Curse of Strahd, Moonshae Season of Rising Shadows, Dungeon-in-a-Box...), here are my own ideas:

The 19d20s: Orcish gangsters with tommy guns; gnomish speakeasys; hard-boiled dwarves; elven femme fatales! I actually saw this in a dream and it was awesome.

Cyberpunk Future: The PCs are for some reason propelled 1,000 years into the future... which is a dystopian nightmare ruled by Dispater! They have to fight back against the system. Basically, the plot of Samurai Jack.

Draconrealm: The world is ruled by dragons in human form, who organize into noble houses and use their humanoid minions to fight proxy wars. PCs are rebels, and may be normal races or dragons.

The Under-Games: Adventuring parties are pitted against each other in search of an escape from Undermountain, all televised (via scrying pools) from The Yawning Portal! A weird mash-up of X-Crawl, The Hunger Games, and Dungeon of the Mad Mage. (I might actually get to run this one soon!)
 

Imaculata

Adventurer
So, the driving force behind the res-saur-rection program was a drug lord who wanted to have the most exotic critters in the entire damn world. Maybe just as super-exclusive scenery, maybe as part of his hunting stock. Maybe both.

They escape because the cartel was busted up and the greater estate left unmonitored. Time + lack of maintenance = dinos on the loose.
There are definitely different plots that can be explored. However, I feel that in order for it to truly feel like a Jurassic Park campaign, it would have to be set in Jurassic Park, or on Site B. Otherwise I feel that the campaign would not meet the expectations of my players.

So there is an inherent contradiction in wanting it to feel familiar, while also trying to subvert expectations. That is the main reason I have not run a JP campaign yet.
 
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Eric V

Adventurer
A group where each PC is a different type of bard.

They are a band that travels from city to city, doing gigs and getting caught up in whatever highjinks along the way. Long term campaign goal is to play in front of the Emperor.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
We played this! We had an all dwarf* campaign back in AD&D 2nd in FR. Later in the campaign, we went on a (published/Dungeon!) adventure where there was a diamond citadel in an active volcano. We ended up clearing whatever was in it and foudn tghat in our DM's FR it had been the last holdout of Clan Melairkyn. We all took oaths and restarted the lost clan with us as the elders. Lots of fun as we both adventured but also nourished and recruited a new clan, set up trade routes, etc.

* "Dwarves" included one dark elf who thought she was a dwarf that we had eventually accepted. shrug It was 30+ years ago. PC tee shirts, eh?

I played Morinn of the Mask, an urban bounty hunter who became a grand master of the crossbow. "Crossbows are good for ..." was a catchphrase. Sometimes it backfired, like we saw the unsuspecting "prisoner" in a vampire lair whom we thought was really a vampire trying to trick us. "Crossbows are good for detecting vampires". Shoot one wooden crossbow bolt into it's heart. End up apologizing for several sessions to the paladin of Lathander the vampires had captured. Ooops.
I found a picture of the All Dwarf (+ one female drow) Campaign. (Well, not really, but when I saw it I had to post.)
89768687_184386369677134_8404818374806208512_o.jpg
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
I found a picture of the All Dwarf (+ one female drow) Campaign. (Well, not really, but when I saw it I had to post.)
View attachment 120020
Our 4Ed campaign was almost that. We had a bunch of dwarves and a single human wizard, with a focus on snow/ice/cold powers, even. Then we had a late addition to the group who played another human PC...
 

Orban Sirgen

Villager
There are definitely different plots that can be explored. However, I feel that in order for it to truly feel like a Jurassic Park campaign, it would have to be set in Jurassic Park, or on Site B. Otherwise I feel that the campaign would not meet the expectations of my players.

So there is an inherent contradiction in wanting it to feel familiar, while also trying to subvert expectations. That sit he main reason I have not run a JP campaign yet.
Jurassic World 2 ended with dinos escaping to the mainland, so it could easily be a group dealing with that...
 

Imaculata

Adventurer
Jurassic World 2 ended with dinos escaping to the mainland, so it could easily be a group dealing with that...
So did Jurassic Park (the book). However, when you run a Jurassic Park campaign, your players will expect to be playing in a themepark setting. That to me is also what makes the setting compelling. It is a combination between Disney Land gone horribly wrong and a dinosaur adventure. So the escaped dinos may serve as a prologue (as they did in the book) to introduce the player characters.

Or, if I base the campaign on Jurassic Park 2, it will be more of a safari on a dino island set against the background of Jurassic Park. I have no desire to base the campaign on any of the newer movies, because they are pretty stupid, and probably shouldn't be considered canon. I would want to base the campaign mostly on the books, with some references to the movies in regards to things I liked (such as characterisation, visual design and audio/music).
 

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