John "The Gneech" Robey (the_gneech) wrote,
John "The Gneech" Robey

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Any Tribes of Evil Humanoids Around?

This weekend the "Holy Crap! Giants!" campaign is scheduled to continue, transferred to Pathfinder rules, which will take a little getting acclimated to but shouldn't be too much trouble. And while I'm looking forward to it, part of me is also wistful for something else. To be honest, what I really want to do is just pull out a handful of graph paper and make 3-5 levels of critters, traps, and the occasional magic fountain that has no reason to be there, tell the players "You all met at the Dancing Dragon Inn and, upon hearing of amazing riches to be found in lost catacombs outside the city, decided to seek your fortune. Before you is a 10' set of steps, leading down into darkness ... what do you do?"

I don't want to go quite so far as to actually pull out a pre-3e ruleset — there's a reason I preferred to play Tunnels and Trolls before the year 2000 — but what I'm getting at is something a little more fun and freeform -- "a sandbox game" to use the current parlance. The giants campaign, while it certainly has a lot of action, is still Teh Epic Storyline[1] with pieces that need to fit together and moving parts I need to keep track of.

When I picked up Thunderspire Labyrinth, one of the ideas I was noodling around with was a 4E "pure dungeon crawl" side-game. In the end I discarded the idea based mostly on our group experiences with 4E combined with various "Now that we've been playing it a while..." posts I've read around the gaming blogosphere. But game system aside, the core nugget of a sandboxey game still appeals to me, and I might just go with it. A city, a tavern, a handful of 1-3, 2-5, and 3-6 dungeons in the neighborhood, and let the players get themselves into trouble. Sounds fun. :)

-The Gneech

[1] The giants are mountain an invasion[2] and they're just the tip of the iceberg, it's up to the PCs to find the cause and save the world. Yes, the idea's been done, but that doesn't mean it can't be done again!

[2] Hmm. This was a typo ... should be "mounting an invasion" of course ... but I kinda like "mountain an invasion" in reference to giants, too.
Tags: dungeons & dragons, gaming
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