View Full Version : Campaign and PC development - crisis, need your help

2010-11-16, 06:33 PM
First of all, hello all visitors to this somewhat burned out DM's thread :smallsmile:

Second, here's a problem that's been growing since march, around the time my group suffered a sort of "disbanding", as some members decided to leave due to personal problems or conflicts with other members.

The reasons are, however, quite irrelevant. :smallamused:

What is important is the fact, that this situation completely ruined the campaign as it was envisioned by me, and thrown all our game sessions ever since into disarray.

I have two main problems, and finding a "right on target" solution seems beyond my capabilities...help me, please !! :smallredface:

Problem I

My current party consists of: a goblin cleric of Bargrivyek, a shadow human cleric of Shar (from the City of Shade), a duergar fighter (newest addition, a long time player, though) and female drow necromancer (formerly a devoted follower of Kiaransalee, currently becoming fascinated by Kelemvor and his dogma).

The problem lies in my playe's total lack of ideas regarding their characters' wants, needs, goals and ambitions. None of them can make any reasonable statement about their expectations, not even a single thing that could be used as a "building block" for an adventure, a scenario, hell, even a quest.

So far I've been thinking about creating some sort of written survey, but alas, preparing a set of questions that would generate data actually useful in creating a plot that would help in strengthening their bond as a group and allow me to make the "bad guys" less "typical" and more "story integrated and mutual" kind of BBEGs.

Did any of you Game Masters ever found himself in a similar situation ? How did you remedy the problem ? Any information will be helpful, no matter how vague.

Problem II

I cannot hink of any good reason to make the players feel the need to actually remain together and strengthen their bonds. So far only some of their goals are even moderately connected and noone has a goal that would require them to work as a group, in order to be achieved, and would be seen as resulting in some benefits for every character individually.

I do not want to force or suggest my players to do anything, but rather seek means to increase their personal input in their characters' development and the campaign progress.

Got ideas, post them. Any bit of information or inspiration will be helpful !!

2010-11-16, 07:16 PM
In my experience, these sorts of situations are what downtime is for.

It's probably worth it to actually go into a session with the premise of "okay, you guys get separately recalled to your respective organizations/have lost leadership/otherwise come to parting ways." That's the sort of thing that gets people thinking about what their characters do, where their loyalties lie, where they devote their efforts where they are -away- from the rest of the characters, so you can elicit some material from them to play off of when next the group converges.

You may have to devote some session time to collaborative worldbuilding/organization-building with your players on a one-on-one or one-on-few basis.

2010-11-16, 07:27 PM
What have the players responded well to in the games so far? What gets them excited and leaning forward in their seats?

Use that as a hook.

If they're excited by gear, drop rumors of a mountain of gear, or a magical forge, or whatever kind of cookie makes sense. If they're into fighting, throw some tasty combats their way. If they like intrigue, get them into some tricky situations.

And then lead that into the main story.