View Full Version : Long-term campaigns

2008-08-02, 05:29 PM
So while I listened to Sean Punch (line editor for GURPS) discuss his campaigns that run over 4 years in length (on this podcast http://www.midnightslair.com/wordpress/?p=58)

I'm curious, what's the longest running game you've ever participated in? I've been lucky to play a game that last for months, certainly never anything for years of regular play.

2008-08-02, 05:35 PM
Two years was my longest, in a modified version of WEG star wars. I had a character in D&D2e that I played for four or five years, but that wasn't in a single campaign, and even had months-long breaks between campaigns.

2008-08-02, 05:36 PM
Our current campaign has been going for almost 2.5 years. There has only been two major cast changes; the first was needed as part of the story, and the other was for a player that had other things to attend to. Same campaign, same quest to save Faerun. It has been ridiculously awesome, and I give the props to my DM whom made it possible. Heck, the module we just went thru was the Tomb of Horrors; and it started right as this strip (http://www.giantitp.com/comics/oots0536.html) was released.

2008-08-02, 05:56 PM
My current campaign (the first and only one I've been in, though I've also run an adventure on the side) has been going on for about a year. Since my players are my students, we can only game during the school year. We don't have much time each week (only about an hour and a half), so we don't get very far. We're currently on our fourth adventure and have gone from Lv 5 to Lv 9. By my projections, the adventure is good until the school year ends in March.

2008-08-02, 06:33 PM
The longest running game I've been in is the campaign I just finished DMing. It lasted about a year. It was a 3.5 game that started at level 1 and made it to level 5.

2008-08-02, 11:22 PM
That's hard to say. Our long term games start out weekly, and then fizzle down to monthly. Technically, I've still got a game going that started in 2000. After 2003 we've only played once or twice a year, but we do intend to finish the game.

Games that I run are short. All but one of my games were under 8 sessions. The other one was between 15 and 20 weekly sessions, so 3-4 months. A couple hours ago I had some players complain how my games were awesome but too short. I tried to explain that they're awesome, because my games are concentrated plot syrup that I don't water down with random encounters or dungeoneering time sinks.

2008-08-02, 11:42 PM
My first campaign. Lasted about 2 1/2 years or so. It could have ran longer...but I (the DM) didn't feel like keeping it going. people kinda let it die, then we revived it, then it died again. but it continuously played for 2 1/2 years. So good start

2008-08-03, 12:09 AM
Well, let's see. I'm now playing in a game that I used to run. The game started back somewhere around 96-98 (yes, sadly, it's been playing so long and my memory is bad enough that I don't recall the exact year) as a 2nd Edition Skills & Powers game at my local gaming club that ran once a month. This game, which started out with a monk, 2 thieves and 2 half-orc cleric/thieves (the monk being the parole officer for the others), eventually grew into a group of 11 players - at which point I split it into two seperate campaigns running in the same timeline. So now it was effectively being run twice a month, once per group. The groups swelled up to 8 and 6 players, then finally saw some dropoff. When the groups shrunk enough, I recondensed them into a single adventuring group; it wasn't long after this I began an extended 'save the world' quest. Unfortunately, about 1/4 of the way through, I moved to Florida. The players, not wanting to give up the game, selected one of their own to take over as DM (and the new GM grilled me mercilessly on all the details I could remember on all the plot hooks I'd set up for them and odd player handouts [like an organizational chart with odd sounding titles] I'd given them.

At some point while I was away (I left in summer of 1999), the game was converted over to 3.0 - and it continued. Eventually the 'save the world' quest was completed (largely as I'd envisioned it, interestingly enough, though I learned later of several interesting complications), and the group continued onward. The game eventually moved out of the gaming club to the home of some of the players. The game moved into 3.5 not too long after it came out. When I moved back to Jersey in late 2003, the game was still running, though they had reached epic (though to be fair, they were mostly around level 22 at that time). I found myself in the interesting position of creating two characters to play in a game and game world that had once been my own. It's been an interesting experience, the difference in playstyles between myself and the DM who took over. This campaign still runs once a month, though it is finally reaching toward an end point. Epic has proven just too much to try and keep abreast of; (We disabled Epic Spellcasting not too long into epic, determining rightly that it was a foetid pile of even more horrible imbalance than regular wizardry could be, incidentally, but in the end even that wasn't enough - the work for the DM in rebalancing was too much). Frankly, though to be fair, the storyline is moving toward a conclusion point anyway, as we make our final attempts to extract Arunsee (Arunshee?) from Lolth.

Yeah. Our great epic quest is to change/free a goddess. The game will probably conclude somewhere around March 2009 ... so it will have been running for between 11 and 13 years at that point.

It has also generated a number of 'spinoff' campaigns - two of which are concurrent event games, one run at the local gaming club, the other at another friend's house; where events from the each game have had major impacts on events in the other. Both of these games are essentially in the same 'alternate universe' to account for differences in how I would have developed the game world versus the GM (in particular, the main point and followups have to do with the ascension of two characters to godhood and the ripple effects that caused; as they did not become divine in 'my version' of the game). The first of these games began (online, via AIM Chats) somewhere around 2001-2002; the second not long after my return to Jersey and my local gaming club. (So late 2003/early 2004). The spinoff games occur approximately 100 years after the completion of the world saving quest, and all the characters, knowingly or not, were descended from some of the great heroes (and not-so-heroes) of the prior campaign - direct descendants in case of the longer lived races, second or third generation in the case of human characters.

The game world - (or more precisely a rebuild of it - the two campaigns just referenced are involved in two quests - one to save the PCs' home city, the other to save, well, a rather larger chunk of real estate, to wit, the planet and much of the surrounding space. Though in the second case, save is a loose word - what they're actually doing (though they don't realize it) as they travel through my world's history is making decisions that will determine how the world will be remade.

This, in turn will lead directly into the first 4th edition game that I intend to run, whose fluff is being determined by me as I go along and as my players in each game make decisions. In short, the end of the campaigns in 3.5 will directly impact the start of the new 4th edition campaign, though it will not be the same characters being played anymore.

2008-08-03, 02:29 AM
Well, Helgraf wins. :smalltongue:

My normal gaming group (i.e., the guys I started out playing with and now live amongst again) seem to have Attention Deficit & Dragons. We've never managed a campaign that lasted more than 8-10 sessions or so, and we only play sporadically (like, sometimes twice a week, and then nothing for several months).

One group at college, though, had a better record. We managed to keep our weekly or bi-weekly Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil game going for some months (August or September until sometime in March, though the last few months were only about once every 4 to 6 weeks). That game fell apart from tension between members (i.e., the boyfriend-girlfriend couple had a bad break-up, and things only got worse from there). Another group (formed from the remnants of the last) managed an all-kobold campaign (which was my friend Josh's project for our Modern Fantasy class) that lasted for probably a good 15 sessions (i.e., most of the semester playing every Tuesday or every other Tuesday). Through a combination of various factors, that turned out to be my favorite campaign I've played in. Man, I miss that group... :smallfrown:

Totally Guy
2008-08-03, 02:38 AM
I participated in a game that was 6 months long. But it turned out, boing, it was a sequel to a game I'd only ben involved in as my intro to roleplaying. That's the thing about when you're new, you remember your own guy but all your friend's characters get forgotten. So we started getting all these cameo's from the last campaign that I didn't get and my guy never showed up.

2008-08-03, 02:55 AM
Longest for me was about 2 months and was a pbp game. We never finished but had quite a few posts in it.

2008-08-03, 03:23 PM
I started a 2nd ed game in my sophmore year of highschool. That would be 1994 for reference. I've run it pretty much every week, starting at home with some friends... eventually playing at UB SARPA over the course of my college career which lasted for another 6 years (changing majors sucks), after graduation and moving across the country I picked up a few new players and started it back up. I'm playing it again later today.

I've always been the DM for this game, played it about 1 time per week on average (sometimes playing 3 days in a row, sometimes going weeks or even a few months in extreme cases between sessions.) The campaign world has obviously evolved a lot over the years... the houserules have gotten so complex I wrote (most of) my own PHB to keep track of stuff. It's taken a lot of rules and ideas from 1st, 2nd, and later incorporated 3rd, and in the session later today an NPC in the party is trying out Warlord as a viable class (still working on the tweaks). It's sort of an evolving monster of a game that greedily steals from any source of ideas it comes accross.

We've been facing the same overarcing plotline/villain over the entire course of the campaign... (yeah they still haven't even figured out exactly what it is... but they know a bit and have stopped it's plans to consume all of reality pretty well so far). They have repeatedly saved the country/continent/world/cosmos/universe/multiverse
from various threats.
Various players have made upwards of 20 characters apiece. Many/most of which are still playable and wandering around the game world somewhere. It has seen characters converted from nearly every game system/universe from 20k Eldar to Tolkien Elves from Valinor (yes the whole light of the two Trees bit) and yes that devolved into a "Your not an Eldar...I'm an Eldar" discussion...

So it's been 14 years and the campaign is still kicking.

Maybe You've heard of it... The Campaign world is called Renedge

For reference it's been in the Buffalo/western new york area and is currently in Vancouver WA. Anybody interested I'm always accepting players...

2008-08-03, 08:45 PM
The longest continuous campaign I have run was about three years, and took up something like ninety sessions. My home brewed campaign world/setting has been around since the early nineties, but not continuously played in. The seventh campaign is currently on temporary hiatus.

2008-08-03, 08:59 PM
My college has been running one setting continuously in the same rule system for the past 30 years. It was actually written in-part by my "primary" DM. He's been running campaigns on a near-weekly basis most of that time. There was a bit of backstory when I joined.

2008-08-04, 11:04 AM
We are at session 71 of our (mostly) weekly (sundays) DnD game and about session 90 of our (again mostly) weekly (tuesdays) WFRP game but the WFRP game took a sabatical for over a year and is due another one soon.

the CoC campaign that sometimes gets run in the WFRP sabaticals started 8-9 years ago and ran every sunday for 2 years (masks of Nyarlathotep followed by beyond the mountains of madness) before i handed it to another GM who took it to Mongo (on tuesdays ;P ).

Masks of Nyarlothotep spoiler

the player who now swaps with me for GMing it had been running a Professor Zarkov character, everyone laughed at him and his declaration that the odd part they found was from a space rocket. Ok so the Adventure states that the part was so advanced that no-one would recognise its intended function but Zarkov was (of course) fully focused on space ship designs and he rolled well enough that there was no way i could justify him not figuring it out. Of course none of the rest of the party believed him.


2008-08-04, 10:41 PM
Exalted First Ed, mine, three years and counting (which, given that's about 75% of the time I've known the game, isn't too bad), total of I think 110 sessions, not counting sidechats and the occasional between-session pickup game. Nothing compared to you lot, but not bad considering that it was the first game I've really tried to run.

2008-08-04, 11:05 PM
A 2e campaign that started in 03 is still going. We're now 8-9th level, in 3.5 and plan on taking on a black dragon soon who now possesses the bones of a great dracolich. Yaaaay.