I sew together pieces of published ideas. I am, unfortunately, not creative enough to world build, totally from scratch. Of course, all creative process is ultimately a recombining of ideas from other sources, so arguably everyone does this - it’s just that the sources may be highly diverse and varied, and most likely they aren’t all conscious influences.
Sorry about that. I initial thought was about building an world, and then as I was writing the question, it seemed it should start smaller. But forgot to change the title. When I went back to edit, there didn't seem to be a way to change the title. My bad. I apologize.Are you asking specifically about adventures (as in a string of related encounters) or worldbuilding?
While the two are related, I don't see them as the same thing.
Yeah, I was being a bit self-depricating with the creativity comment, but time is of course the big factor. I certainly could build a world from scratch, but that’s a lot of time and energy to spend on stuff that mostly won’t be relevant in game play anyway. Borrowing ideas from my favorite existing settings an remixing them in a way I find fun is similarly rewarding for a lot less work.Same for me, it's more lack of time than creativity but the result is the same, it usually ends up a golem stitched from multiple ideas.
Yeah, I was being a bit self-depricating with the creativity comment, but time is of course the big factor. I certainly could build a world from scratch, but that’s a lot of time and energy to spend on stuff that mostly won’t be relevant in game play anyway. Borrowing ideas from my favorite existing settings an remixing them in a way I find fun is similarly rewarding for a lot less work.
Yep, which is also why 4e’s setting assumptions have a heavy influence on my own Frankenstein homebrew setting. Which, if I were to grossly oversimplify for comedic effect, could be summarized as “the deities and history of the 4e setting, the cultures of the Dragon Age games, and the cosmological model of Chronicles of Darkness, with a healthy dose of “but I think it would be cooler if…”Pressure of the modern world and all that...
Honestly, this is also why I really appreciated the 4e approach to the point of lights settings. It did not require a lot of work up front, and it could then be tailored to the direction taken by the campaign. If I ever get the time to create a campaign from scratch, I will probably start with something along those lines, rather than spend time and money trying to absorb a large setting or creating my own. Start with general ideas about a cosmology and principles, and just a local intriguing setting and see how things develop.
I wish! If I get backstories at all it's well after the adventure has started. Simply not an option. I might add backstory related stuff later, but I wouldn't call it part of "world building".I use my players' backstories to sculpt the start of the adventure
Once I started with the "big bad" but it's not something I usually do. The actions of NPCs might affect how things develop, but again, I wouldn't call that part of "world building".
- I begin with the idea of an antagonist, and then sculpt from there
Nope, I don't have the time to build stuff the players will never see.
- I start with an area or ecosystem, and then sculpt from there
Something I try to avoid, it runs the risk of railroading the players.
- I think of a scene, and then start to sculpt from that scene forward
I do this. But I don't only do this. I usually use published stuff as filler.
- I sew together pieces of published ideas to create my adventure
Not sure what you mean by that.
- Nothing. I let my players decide.