The Red Box Blog

Ramblings about D&D.

5 Types of Sequel Campaigns

When a campaign ends it doesn’t have to be the end for the world in which the campaign existed. Some of the best campaigns I have been part of (on either side of the screen), have been sequel campaigns; campaigns set in the same world as a previous campaign.

Now I’m not talking about published campaign settings here, mostly because the other games that have gone on in published setting are either largely unknown to you, or are just considered part of the background of the world. No, what I am talking about are campaigns with a direct connect to another game you have been part of. For example:

1. The Direct Sequel

This is when shortly after wrapping up a campaign, you decided to go back to it and start up a new story. The only thing that differentiates this from continuing the same game on was the intent to stop once a certain story goal was reached. In many ways this sort of campaign is very much like a movie sequel; it takes characters who have had most of their story arcs resolved and throws them into a whole new set of problems.

2. The Branch Off

For some reason or another your group doesn’t want to or cannot continue with the same party of characters, but rather than throw out the campaign you create a second group of characters who are known to the first to continue on the story. Special guest appearances from original group members may happen from time to time. I have most often seen this employed when there has been a high player turnover, or a near TPK; everyone still wants to play the game, but the existing party just didn’t work any more.

3. The Unretirement

This is when a long time after ending a game someone gets it in their head that it would be great fun to go back and play those characters again. On the surface it sounds a lot like The Direct Sequel, but the feeling when playing it is very different; the world has lost a lot of its familiarity over time, but has gained a huge amount of nostalgia.

4. The Continuity

Sometimes DMs like to keep using the same setting repeatedly, even for new campaigns or new groups. Done correctly this can make a world feel much more rich as it is already flushed out and seems very busy. Done incorrectly it can make a group feel like they are not the focus of the campaign.

5. The Secret Connection

This is when a new campaign is connected to an old one, the connection is very important to the plot, but it is also a secret. The more party members from the old campaign that are in the new, the more effective this is. After all players who were not part of the connected game will only see references to that game as back story, not as camera winks.

Have an opinion about this article? I love comments. Please feel welcome to leave your thoughts.


December 10, 2010 - Posted by | Campaign Ideas, RPGs | ,

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