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I've managed to piece together a collection of all the existing WotC 4E Dark Sun material including Bloodsand Arena and the three parts of Fury of the Wastewalker, in addition to of course the miniadventure in the DSCS plus Marauders of the Dune Sea and the Dungeon Magazine modules.
Even given the known issues some of these have (I've read detailed reviews of them all and am prepared to do my homework to modify them appropriately), I'd like to run them all for my group as a loose Heroic tier campaign. My question is this:
What is the best order in which to play out these various adventures? What should I start with especially -- but taking into consideration the challenges in each and the basic plots of them all, what might work best?
Any advice is appreciated as I pore over them and make notes.
I'd love to get a copy of Fury of the Wastewalker. :O
I've been toying with running a DS game for awhile and this is how I pictured an approximate order.
I believe that covers all of the DS 4e adventures. I like the round trip (Tyr>Altaruk>SilverSprings>Tyr) the first few adventures give. After Betrayl I would probably dangle other custom mini adventures besides Sand Raiders to give my group more choices. After getting back to Tyr I would dangle the hooks for Marauders, Cistern, and Wastewalker and see what route the party takes. Those 3 adventures would have to be modified to handle a higher level party by then. I've also been looking at adapting some DS 2e adventures. Freedom could be run first and end with the party being hired to guard the caravan in Betrayl at Altaruk. I would probably put Road to Urik in after the party had completed several adventures in Tyr.
I saw a DS campaign on Obsidian Portal where they had Arisphistaneles direct the party to Tyr on Alliance business after Blood Sand. Along the way they were swept up into Wastewalker. In fact I would encourage you to search for DS games on Obsidian Portal. There are several using the intro adventures. There are some great ideas out there.
My campaign uses alot of that material. I ran an escape from Tyr skill challenge during the death of Kalak. Then bloodsand arena part 1. Sand raiders was next and with the groups failure Tomblador sponsored the Vault of Darom Madar. I dropped hints of the waste walker but never ran it. I made some more arena fights then Ran Cisterns of Aravek, slaughtered the group with the Tembo. I made a few encounters in the brickyards and the warrens before sending the players back into the desert for Cruel as a Desert wind. The group is stuck in Under-Tyr exploring the ruins of a Yuan-ti temple and will stumble into a two way fight between Temmnya Shom's undead legion and the Yuan-Ti. I plan to run Marauders and Revenge but I will adjust them now that the party is 9th level. Beneath the dust and Isle is going to take place between heroic and paragon tier.
I like how Feetz put the order of adventures together. Some of the adventures duplicate the same levels of play, but I think that is a surmountable challenge. Some things to keep in mind:
- It is okay to have quick fights. Sand Raiders could have monster hit points reduced, or just have foes flee when bloodied. You end up with a fast quick fight that can still hit hard (you can increase damage, though you won't need to do so with silt runners), and more time for the other content you want to bring in (and for the overall story).
- Adventure Tools can easily modify creatures if you want to bump up the level of adventures as you go.
- You don't have to use everything in an adventure. The elves in Bloodsand can easily be an RP scene rather than a combat, and Vault can be mined for its sweet spots. Drop the encounters you think will be the least fun and focus on the parts you really dig.
- Everything is easier if you level PCs when it makes sense to do so, rather than actually awarding XP. it will let you more easily fit in all of the experiences the adventures provide without feeling you have to fix XP.
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