The very best thing in 4E so far

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It's not even released yet and it has already fired up my already hyperactive imagination into overdrive.

But you know what, 3rd Edition did the exact same thing, so what's different this time? Simple: The game is letting my imagination fly free. In 3e I was often crushed under the weight of the rules and the need to create a fully developed world before playing*.

With a cleaner ruleset, simpler monsters, and the points of light concept, that's no longer a problem. I feel like I can finally reach my potential as a Dungeon Master.

I could be wrong, of course, but I doubt it. Share your thoughts on this.

*Okay, sure, nothing stopped me from making a PoL setting in 3e, but the books never really encouraged it, and part of it was just my youthful foolishness and arrogance ("No simple dungeon crawling for me, I shall create a sweeping epic with masses of political intrigue!").

The Greendale Campaign

 

I was there at the dawn of the Third-and-a-Halfth Age of Dungeons & Dragons. I saw action during the Crisis of Infinite Foundations, stood on the ramparts of the Citadel of Mirth, delved deep into the debauchery of the Forum of the Adult, and fought alongside the Infernal Bovine on the fields of the Eberron War. I weathered the Ponystorm. I witnessed as the orcs came for the wizos, and I wept mightily. I saw the realm crack as the Fourth Age came upon us, and I witnessed the eldritch tendrils of the dread Gleemax. Now I watch as the Meta Wars ravage the land as the Fifth Age is dawning. I have walked these Boarderlands for many a long year, and bear many scars in my soul. Yet I remain the White Sorcerer, ever in your service. TWS out.

I'm inclined to write things up like "this takes place on continent X, in hemisphere M and has environments A, B and C, with the cities of S, U, V impacting this town in the following ways..." it still makes for a hell of a lot less work then having to create an entire world before the game begins.

So I too like the PoL setting
Pionts of Light is not a "setting". IMHO
It is just a pretty way of describing a tavern near a dungeon. As soon as one pushes out the world to include nations and reasoning behind dungeons and anything else... then you have a "Setting". IMHO2

This didn't do it for me though. Getting something to stir-up your creative flow is always good.
GAMMA WORLD Wuv D&D: Beyond the RPG - Transcript This is a complete transcript. http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/22329697?sdb=1&pg=last#390668593 The audio file is in this News Archive http://www.wizards.com/DnD/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4news/DNDXP 2010 D&D Product Overview (47 minutes into the Audio) http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/22329697?sdb=1&pg=last#390928045
Pionts of Light is not a "setting". IMHO
It is just a pretty way of describing a tavern near a dungeon. As soon as one pushes out the world to include nations and reasoning behind dungeons and anything else... then you have a "Setting". IMHO2

Never claimed it was. I only mentioned "a PoL setting," meaning a setting designed with the points of light philosophy.

And when people do say "the PoL setting" they moslty mean the concept or type of setting.

Also, it's not that 4e specifically fired up my imagination. As I said, 3e did it too, in pretty much equal measure. 4e just feels like a better tool for unleashing that imagination upon the unsuspecting world.

The Greendale Campaign

 

I was there at the dawn of the Third-and-a-Halfth Age of Dungeons & Dragons. I saw action during the Crisis of Infinite Foundations, stood on the ramparts of the Citadel of Mirth, delved deep into the debauchery of the Forum of the Adult, and fought alongside the Infernal Bovine on the fields of the Eberron War. I weathered the Ponystorm. I witnessed as the orcs came for the wizos, and I wept mightily. I saw the realm crack as the Fourth Age came upon us, and I witnessed the eldritch tendrils of the dread Gleemax. Now I watch as the Meta Wars ravage the land as the Fifth Age is dawning. I have walked these Boarderlands for many a long year, and bear many scars in my soul. Yet I remain the White Sorcerer, ever in your service. TWS out.

I like the PoL idea myself.
Whenever I built worlds, I always wanted them smalle rthan what the campaign settings were offering. I didn't want a tamed world with a few mysterious places and the odd dungeon stuck here or there. I wanted an untamed world with enough civilization to support my PCs.
But that was a lot of work, and the pre-packaged campaign settings became the way to go. I guess maybe Eberron will be what it is, and the FR will still be the FR, but maybe they have plans on releasing a core campaign setting as well, and I can plunder ideas from all of them while using the core.
Pionts of Light is not a "setting". IMHO
It is just a pretty way of describing a tavern near a dungeon. As soon as one pushes out the world to include nations and reasoning behind dungeons and anything else... then you have a "Setting". IMHO2

This didn't do it for me though. Getting something to stir-up your creative flow is always good.

I'd say it is a setting. There's fallen kingdoms and fallen empires, current cities and history. Sure its fairly bare bones (which is what I like), but there's still plenty of it.
It's not even released yet and it has already fired up my already hyperactive imagination into overdrive.

But you know what, 3rd Edition did the exact same thing, so what's different this time? Simple: The game is letting my imagination fly free. In 3e I was often crushed under the weight of the rules and the need to create a fully developed world before playing*.

With a cleaner ruleset, simpler monsters, and the points of light concept, that's no longer a problem. I feel like I can finally reach my potential as a Dungeon Master.

I could be wrong, of course, but I doubt it. Share your thoughts on this.

*Okay, sure, nothing stopped me from making a PoL setting in 3e, but the books never really encouraged it, and part of it was just my youthful foolishness and arrogance ("No simple dungeon crawling for me, I shall create a sweeping epic with masses of political intrigue!").

Ok, this is pretty much exactly how I feel in regards to 3.X v. 4E

I had a crazy imagination with my 3.5 campaign, but I flew too high far too early in my DMing career. As a result the campaign fell flat on its face :raincloud

Now I have a whole new campaign setting that has been largely inspired by PoL. The details are panning out nicely, and I feel like the rules will now be there to lift me up instead of being a burden

PM if you want to talk about PoL campaign settings
Ease of use. Everything I have seen so far looks to be much simpler to use.
Ease of use. Everything I have seen so far looks to be much simpler to use.

And this is reason numero uno for why I feel 4e will let my imagination run wild: I can spend less time worrying about the rules.

The Greendale Campaign

 

I was there at the dawn of the Third-and-a-Halfth Age of Dungeons & Dragons. I saw action during the Crisis of Infinite Foundations, stood on the ramparts of the Citadel of Mirth, delved deep into the debauchery of the Forum of the Adult, and fought alongside the Infernal Bovine on the fields of the Eberron War. I weathered the Ponystorm. I witnessed as the orcs came for the wizos, and I wept mightily. I saw the realm crack as the Fourth Age came upon us, and I witnessed the eldritch tendrils of the dread Gleemax. Now I watch as the Meta Wars ravage the land as the Fifth Age is dawning. I have walked these Boarderlands for many a long year, and bear many scars in my soul. Yet I remain the White Sorcerer, ever in your service. TWS out.

I like the PoL, as this is most of my 3.5 campaigns anyways (go go Conan.) The best thing out of 4e so far is the cosmology. Got I hated that wheel.
To clarify (the thread title is really vague, I know), this thread is intended for DM's to discuss the benefits of 4e from a standpoint relevant to the topic of this forum (Adventures). While there are lots of neat things about the new edition, I'm interested in those that relate to encounter/adventure/campaign design.

The Greendale Campaign

 

I was there at the dawn of the Third-and-a-Halfth Age of Dungeons & Dragons. I saw action during the Crisis of Infinite Foundations, stood on the ramparts of the Citadel of Mirth, delved deep into the debauchery of the Forum of the Adult, and fought alongside the Infernal Bovine on the fields of the Eberron War. I weathered the Ponystorm. I witnessed as the orcs came for the wizos, and I wept mightily. I saw the realm crack as the Fourth Age came upon us, and I witnessed the eldritch tendrils of the dread Gleemax. Now I watch as the Meta Wars ravage the land as the Fifth Age is dawning. I have walked these Boarderlands for many a long year, and bear many scars in my soul. Yet I remain the White Sorcerer, ever in your service. TWS out.

this thread is intended for DM's to discuss the benefits of 4e from a standpoint relevant to the topic of this forum (Adventures). While there are lots of neat things about the new edition, I'm interested in those that relate to encounter/adventure/campaign design.

Its making it quite easy to throw in adventures wherever I want, that aren't necessarily connected to earlier ones due to the lack of communication that happens between towns and cities.

For example I've fleshed out (or at least named) 7 adventures. 4 of them are heavily connected to an earlier adventure (So you go from adventure X to adventure Y or to adventure Z). Whereas 3 of them aren't connected to anything that happened earlier. That's because the 3 are in different locations. As I throw in more towns, they can each have their own adventures, and they can be fairly isolated from other areas.

I've also got an adventure that involves going to a far away location. Now I don't know where this location is yet, or what the players will find along the way. All I know is where they'll start from and where they'll finish. Before each session I can flesh out the next location the players will make it to and all of the encounters and side adventures they'll go on along the way. There's no need for me to do that from the very first day, I can do it as I go along, because what happens in one city, isn't going to impact the next city unless I want it too

Does any of that make sense?
*Okay, sure, nothing stopped me from making a PoL setting in 3e, but the books never really encouraged it, and part of it was just my youthful foolishness and arrogance ("No simple dungeon crawling for me, I shall create a sweeping epic with masses of political intrigue!").

That is learning to be a better DM. A lot of DMs go through the same cycle, I certainly did. First you just put out a string of unrelated dungeons. Then you learn about worlds and plots and you want to create the ultimate background and world. You spend your time drafting maps and crafting interesting cities, places and other material that nobody ever sees because the characters wandered the wrong direction.

Eventually you learn to balance the two. Crafting just enough material to create a world and give the players the sense of being in a complete world without wasting time drafting material that will never get used.

I am hopeful that 4e's generic background will include more chunks that can be lifted and dropped into my campaign easily. Worlds like FR are great in that they have so much history and so many interconnected bits that it creates much more of a real world sense, but that also makes taking one part out and using it someplace harder.

Jay
That is learning to be a better DM. A lot of DMs go through the same cycle, I certainly did. First you just put out a string of unrelated dungeons. Then you learn about worlds and plots and you want to create the ultimate background and world. You spend your time drafting maps and crafting interesting cities, places and other material that nobody ever sees because the characters wandered the wrong direction.

Except I didn't even go through the "unrelated dungeons" phase.:embarrass

The Greendale Campaign

 

I was there at the dawn of the Third-and-a-Halfth Age of Dungeons & Dragons. I saw action during the Crisis of Infinite Foundations, stood on the ramparts of the Citadel of Mirth, delved deep into the debauchery of the Forum of the Adult, and fought alongside the Infernal Bovine on the fields of the Eberron War. I weathered the Ponystorm. I witnessed as the orcs came for the wizos, and I wept mightily. I saw the realm crack as the Fourth Age came upon us, and I witnessed the eldritch tendrils of the dread Gleemax. Now I watch as the Meta Wars ravage the land as the Fifth Age is dawning. I have walked these Boarderlands for many a long year, and bear many scars in my soul. Yet I remain the White Sorcerer, ever in your service. TWS out.

I've gotta agree, it's much easier to work out the basics of an adventure in a Points of Light style, rather than having to sit down with maps and campaign guides from the get-go, work out exactly where in exactly which nation each of your locales is...

Has to be said, 4th Ed is gonna be my first proper attempt at Dungeon Mastery, but I've got tons of experience from playing Neverwinter Nights to give me some idea of plot variety from the word go.

I reckon that alternate hooks leading onto the same adventure, multiple outcomes for said adventure, etc. shouldn't be beyond me. I'm even going to experiment with a speed critical quest, just to see how it works- though I fully intend to make certain that there are plenty of different outcomes to cover the most likely end results...
I've finished mapping out the first few weeks worth of travel, and its so easy to do. I just threw in a retired adventurer in one of the towns to provide adventure hooks for players to visit places she had been. I then included the places she had been in my map (those that I've articulated anyway, she went on too many for me to document), and it was easy. I just throw in a city here or some ruins there, and I don't need to have everything mapped out between where the players will start and where they will end up. I can have white space between the two and as they travel to where the adventure will take place, I can decide THEN what is in between and provide more side-quests for them to go on.

I thought that was very cool :D
Best thing about 4e: Paladins don't magically summon their mounts out of thin air anymore.

You know I'm right.
No. I'm afraid I don't.

It is probably a feat.
GAMMA WORLD Wuv D&D: Beyond the RPG - Transcript This is a complete transcript. http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/22329697?sdb=1&pg=last#390668593 The audio file is in this News Archive http://www.wizards.com/DnD/Article.aspx?x=dnd/4news/DNDXP 2010 D&D Product Overview (47 minutes into the Audio) http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/22329697?sdb=1&pg=last#390928045
I agree about using PoL. I've been DMing for almost 30 years, and have wasted a great deal of time making maps of continents, cities, etc only to have them collect dust and rarely be used.
I do think a DM needs to decide some basic things about the campaign before the characters are created.

I think the best thing among those that they promised has three parts: classes are more balanced, they stay balanced as they gradually ascend 30 levels, and they're harder to break. No more useless L2 wizards or overbalancing L13 wizards.
I am in love with 4e thus far. The ease of use, the streamlined rules, and the light rules are what the game needs. I feel too that 3.5 often bogged down creativity or game flow by having too many rules. Despite being a D&D player of nearly a decade I still found myself constantly checking the PHB and DMG for rules.

I like the POL setting, but I won't use it. I sorta prefer the opposite: a highly civilized world with few small, but dire, dangers out there. My campaign world is built around that concept.
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