New guy - is there a generally accepted campaign world?

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I was a serious RPGr years ago, and my kids got the 4th Ed. starter set as a gift, and I am trying to catch up.  

One thing I do not see is any sort of gazzetteer.  The adventures, dieties, etc. all seem to assume a common world, but I find no overview material.  I see that the Forgotten Realms has been 'ported' to 4e, but I kinda want to stay in the mainstream to be compatable with all the other material.

Am I missing something? 
The common world in 4e isn't that tightly defined.  There's a lot of lore scattered around through the books, but it's very much set up to give broad ideas and let DMs do whatever they want with it.  Personally, I've read through a lot of 4e books and think it's a pretty interesting and compelling world.

Don't worry about compatibility between settings.  Things are basically set up so that you can run any material in any setting with no mechanical concerns, and the 'mainstream' of 4e generally goes with this.  For example, the Swordmage is in the Forgotten Realm Player Guide, but I've never seen anyone care if you use it outside of Forgotten Realms.  
Seriously, though, you should check out the PbP Haven. You might also like Real Adventures, IF you're cool.
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The common world in 4e isn't that tightly defined.  There's a lot of lore scattered around through the books, but it's very much set up to give broad ideas and let DMs do whatever they want with it.  Personally, I've read through a lot of 4e books and think it's a pretty interesting and compelling world.

  



Agreed, the 4e base world sets up just enough background to make it compelling while leaving all the room you need for DM expansion.
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The generic 4e campaign world is/was called "Points of Light" by many people but yes, it's not very explicitly defined.  Like the other posters said, it's meant to be compatible with other settings and gives you just enough background to allow you to develop it further.  Details are scattered throughout the books but there is a wiki link here:

community.wizards.com/wiki/Dnd:Points_of...

But if you're looking for a campaign world that others will support you can choose from Forgotten Realms, Dark Sun or Eberron - all three of those have been ported to 4e.  Otherwise you can of course just develop your own setting.

OD&D, 1E and 2E challenged the player. 3E challenged the character, not the player. Now 4E takes it a step further by challenging a GROUP OF PLAYERS to work together as a TEAM. That's why I love 4E.

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"Challenge" is overrated.  "Immersion" is usually just a more pretentious way of saying "having fun playing D&D."

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I'd recommend using the 'Points of Light' setting.  The fact the much of it is left for the DM (and players) to define is one of its strengths IMHO.  It means that you've got plenty of material for your first few sessions, but plenty of scope for your group to branch out and make the world your own.
The generic 4e campaign world is/was called "Points of Light" by many people

The core setting was called Nentir Vale by WotC. "Points of Light" was mainly presented as key conceit for 4e (and later by a few as an unofficial title).
I kinda want to stay in the mainstream to be compatable with all the other material.

The 4e core (Nentir Vale) material is meant to be generic and compatible with any setting. There are a lot of adventures written for it, but not much 'setting' material.

Conversely, Forgotten Realms has a large following in LFR, a longer history, and literally hundreds of 4e adventures (which WotC initially supported as if there were core material). Also, WotC's release schedule is all about FR, and WotC seems very focused on FR in 5e.

Having run both I decided to put all my eggs in the FR basket. But ultimately it depends on your preference: do you like to roll your own, or have it pre-detailed?
If you want to do alot of your worldbuilding yourself, stick to 4e Nentir Vale stuff, Wide open, but enough interesting hooks to keep it from being too daunting. If you want to have to do less worldbuilding, and act more as a travel guide for your npcs, FR is the way to go. Both ways have their merits, its up to you and your players/kids to figure out what works best for them.

Dark Sun is a hell of a lot of fun once you've got some experience under your belt and are ready for a bit more gritty world. I've had quite a lot of fun there.

As for Ebberon, I've never actually gotten around to playing a campagin there, something always gets in the way.
community.wizards.com/nentir_vale/wiki/I...

Describes most everything that has been presented for the Nentir Vale and the surrounding environs. Check out hidden locations in the world for a pretty huge laundry list of adventure ideas. 
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