I have lost my way.... (campaign help)

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Ive started dm'ing a new lvl1 group playing 4e based in the nentir vale (sandbox). I have a party of 3 (2 brand new players and 1 who has played about a year)

I thought that this time i would let the game be way way more open so they could try and do what they want. I added afew hooks and they bit onto one that involved venturing into the mountains to try and save 2 children which have been taken from the town they were in. The mother (named luna willows) was a bit sketchy when they talked with her(she was happy and was caught dancing befor they entered her house, even though she has lost 2 children). she told them where the enterance to a cave she thought her kids might by. There were hints dropped along the way that luna is a sorceress.
Long story short they did completely unexpected things and ended up taking a portel to the feywild (trying to escape a raging minotaur).. 

This is were im kinda stuck, ive read the heros of feywild a bunch but havnt bought it. I have afew books and minis but sadly not as much as id like. I have:
threats to the nentir vale
dm kit
redbox
some random maps 

One piece of feed back from one player was that she didnt feel there was a quest going on and in the feywild the group ended saying "F*** the children" 


Ideally i would like them out of the feywild asap because the minis i have atm dont suit it but i would like them to go back later (once i get my bones and buy the feywild books) 

Where could i lead the group now ? (how could get them to go back to the nentir vale asap?) 

Cheers and thank you 
You could always have an angry fey wizard or the like take offense to them tromping all over their lands. A bit of magic to teleport them back from whence they came should set everything straight.

Or they could run across someone who has been trapped in the Feywild for a time a hermit who knows of a way back but it is guarded by something that they never thought they could handle. Though surely brave adventurers might be able to handle it and finally allow him and them to return home.

Either of these can let you send them back to the Nentir Vale where you wish to place them
You could always have an angry fey wizard or the like take offense to them tromping all over their lands. A bit of magic to teleport them back from whence they came should set everything straight.





i do have a rad elf(high elf) wizard mini i want to pull out!
Ok, some questions to fill in some blanks:

• Who decided that the portal led to the Feywild, and why?

• When you said that they bit on the Save the Children hook, how was the choice presented?

• If the player didn't think they were on a quest, what did she (or they) think they were doing?

• How much have you been allowing the players to contribute to the world-building process?

As a quick answer, without those, I wouldn't worry about minis or maps or anything like that; use tokens that are easily distinguishable, and tell them what they represent, and that's what they represent.  And use a reusable battlemap or gridded poster paper, when you need to improvise a map.  Refluff stuff from the books you have to represent what you and your players think is in the Feywild.  If they chose to be there, they did so for a reason, and looking to try to immediately force them back isn't likely to be the best option.
Well if you wanted to get them out have them discover that after a certain amount of time somthing bad starts happening to non natives to the fey wilds.  Have them learn the location of a portal and have them get there before time runs out with a simple puzzle to open the portal!

You can also use this mistake to add a random level of mystery to the original quest.  I know you said your minis dont match but there are plenty of alteratives like paper or random household objects. Also who says a mini has to look like what its representing? To play off the original quest maybe,  the mother was locked away in the fey wilds by a creature that took her place to cause mishchief/harm on the material plane. Maybe a fey dopple ganger of sorts.  The Players find the real mother in the fey wilds and she explains what happend. Now they have a reason to go back and reunite a mother with her children. 


• Who decided that the portal led to the Feywild, and why?

• When you said that they bit on the Save the Children hook, how was the choice presented?

• If the player didn't think they were on a quest, what did she (or they) think they were doing?

• How much have you been allowing the players to contribute to the world-building process?






  • Sadly i decided the portal led to the feywild because i was caught completely off guard and hadnt prepared that deep in the dungeon ( which they ran through , running for there lives)

  • A bar wench told them about a women who had her children taken in the middle of the night near the inn (so they saw the women etc) i will find out excatly what the player ment of "i didnt feel we were on a quest" and get back to you

  • One of the new players was a tad big overwelming with decisions(ive now talked to that player) so i think she might of thought she was just going along for the ride

  • i havnt given them alot of world building or anything, they have given me a little on backgrounds and where they are from etc but i feel with the players being so new it could be hard for them 



 the mother was locked away in the fey wilds by a creature that took her place to cause mishchief/harm on the material plane. Maybe a fey dopple ganger of sorts.  The Players find the real mother in the fey wilds and she explains what happend. Now they have a reason to go back and reunite a mother with her children. 

- Great great great. love it.

Thanks for all the help so far guys

Ok....

• Never present something that you're not prepared or capable to deal with.    And even if you do, and the players grab it, don't freak out; just roll with it. 

• Were there other "hooks" that the barmaid told them of, or that they'd already heard and rejected?  Or was the kidnapping plot the first one they'd been presented?  Or did you give them choices prior to starting, and they chose it at that time?  I ask because, as mostly new players, they may have thought they had no choice but to be interested in the first thing you gave them.  When I'm going sandbox, I tend to offer players as many as three hooks at once — either ahead of time during the planning stages or during actual RP — and let them decide what they're interested in.

• I'm not saying that they need to build encounters for you or anything like that.  But if you ask them for some input and suggestions — maybe ask them to tell you about theirhome villages, of any rumors they've heard about the area, or even when presented with a portal that you have no idea where it might go, asking them where they think it might go — might be a way to start the process.  Yes, they're new players; but that also means that they're new players and haven't already built up the walls of expectations that Players do X and DMs do Y; you can have an easier time, therefore, building those new pathways with them, as opposed to starting them on one road and then trying to draw them to another.  Plus, if they feel like they're contributing to the story — even a small part — then they're more invested in what happens, and are less likely to bow off whatever they were doing when things aren't quite right.

• Also, try to figure out interesting ways to succeed and fail.  Again, ask them what they think is interesting, what possibiities might happen if they succeed at something or fail at it.  Ask them what they want to do, even if it means working in some areas you're less comfortable.  Besides which, they're new, they have no idea what's in the Feywild.  Ask them what they think is there, come up with some other stuff, and have fun with it. 
awesome thanks for all the great advice, im looking forward to our next session
I have to agree that you just need to roll with the punches.  Players will often times come up with things/do things that you would never have expected.  They're in the Feywilds now so if they are enjoying being there then just go with it.  Like the others said you don't have to have all the pieces/parts/minis/books/etc in order to have fun there.  Just make it up and get input from your players as to what they think is there.

IF the players do want to get back then you could give their PCs some hooks for reasons to get back.  Maybe they don't give a darn about the 2 kids.  But there are other things that they may care more about.  You said that each player gave you a little bit of background information on their characters.  Encourage that.  Ask them to flush out their backstory a little bit more.  Talk with them about it and maybe even contribute some ideas to help them have a great backstory.  Then you can use some of that information from their backstory to make many, many hooks and see what direction they take from there.  And one of the best parts about it, is that since they helped to make and/or completely made their backstory, the hooks you're throwing out that are connected to it will be very interesting to them.  You can also use these kinds of hooks not just to get them out of the Feywild, but to give them opportunities to "tie up loose ends" from their backstory.

Example:  PCs father was a High Ranking Fighter in the army and had a sword (or other weapon) that was awesome.  The father was killed through treachery and the weapon stolen.  Now the PCs one day hears a rumor about an awesome weapon that some dude is using and the description matches closely to the weapon taken from his father.

Example for getting out of Feywild: a PCs relative (mom,dad,bro,sis,etc) wandered off years ago never to be seen again.  the PCs misses said person and longs to find them.  While in the Feywild they find a (something) that they know belongs to the missing person.  They start following a trail of ever-increasing clues/information that confirm they are finally on the trail of this person, only to find that the trail ends at a portal (which may or may not be guarded by bad guys, your choice) and that portal leads back to the nentir vale.

Now these are just examples that I came up with.  If you choose to go a route like this you will have to come up with your hooks based on what your players put in their PCs backstories.

However, all that being said, if they are happy where they are at then just play things there.  But you can still incorporate Backstory hooks to give them some cool options if they want to pursue them.