I took last Friday off from running my online game in the War of the Burning Sky campaign so that I could attend TactiCon here in Denver. The convention was great both for running and playing games, but I’m ready to get back to my ongoing campaign with my online players in the War of the Burning Sky world.
The last session was a weird one. We only had four of the five players, so I mostly ran them through a Living Forgotten Realms module that I had prepared for TactiCon. I didn’t want to advance the story from Adventure 1 to Adventure 2 without the full party being present. Also, they needed a little more experience for leveling up to move into Adventure 2. We’ll likely begin tomorrow by running the final encounter from the one-shot game and then resume the main quest.
I’ve had time to prepare for the next section, and I’m glad for it. The second adventure in the War of the Burning Sky is complicated. There are a lot of NPCs, and the adventure is written with great flexibility – the party could meet various characters in lots of different orders and take lots of different actions, which could lead to lots of different encounters. The railroading is diminished. This is great for the players, but tough for the dungeon master.
The problem isn’t so much that I have to be prepared for lots of different eventualities. It’s more that I need to UNDERSTAND what the various possibilities are well in advance so that I can make them available to the party whenever it’s appropriate. I’ve read through the entire second adventure once now (all 93 pages of it) and I’d like to read it a second time before we play it if possible. The campaign is starting to grow on me, and I think my enthusiasm will translate well for the players. Here’s hoping!
P.S. I’m also excited to say that Bree, the DM for the ongoing in-person campaign I play in, is ready to start running adventures again, and we’re going to meet on Sunday for some gaming. Huzzah!