The Red Box Blog

Ramblings about D&D.

The Evil Side Game

Something I have tried on a limited scale in the past, though never to quite the extent I have wanted, is the Evil Side Game.

The idea of the Evil Side Game is that you are running a typical, good aligned campaign. However, from time to time, the players are allowed to take control of an alternate group of characters in the same world. There are a few different reasons one might want this for his game, all of which are valid.

The Evil Game as a Break

One of the simplest uses of this idea is to just give the players a break from the norm. This can be a chance to play different characters, while still maintaining a connection to the same game world.

For some players getting a chance to be evil can be a nice break from being a very good character. In other instances stepping away from the ongoing plot can releive some of the tension surrounding it.

An Evil Side Game can also be a break for the DM, either for the same sort of reasons that it is a break for the players, or because it is quite possible to have a different member of the group DM the side game.

The Evil Game as an Alternate View

The biggest reason I like Evil Side Games is to give the players an alternate view on the events that are happenning; all too often with complex storylines the players miss out on important plot points because they see the whole story through the eyes of their characters. By giving the players a different set of eyes once in a while it becomes possible to convey plot information that might otherwise be unknown, or the subject of a very clunky exposition.

The Evil Group as Future Enemies

Obviously the characters in the Evil Game have huge potential as future villians in the main campaign. Not only are they likely to be a very good match for the PCs, but the player’s knowledge of the Evil Group can be used to evoke real concern for the main group’s safety, even from players who normally never back down.

Bringing Them All Together

Of course, there is no need to choose between these different motives; I am most happy when I combine them all. Its great fun to give everyone a break, while giving them insight into the campaign, and letting them play their future enemies.

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


December 28, 2010 - Posted by | Dungeons and Dragons, RPGs | ,

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