Featured Campaign for October, 2009

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  • autumnschild
    autumnschild
    Posts: 153
    Tales of the Black Forest

    Jason has a passion for gaming. And a passion for little mouse people. Little mouse people with swords. Does that sound weird? What if I told you I was talking about Mouse Guard, would that clear it up? I should have just said that from the start so you didn’t think Jason was some kind of freaky guy, huh? Anyway, this month’s Featured Campaign is Tales of the Black Forest, a Mouse Guard campaign lovingly crafted by a scholar of play, Jason.

    Jason’s campaign is unique in that it is a world setting in which he runs a number of groups, or patrols as he calls them, at once through his campaign. While one patrol sits around a table, another patrol meets on skype, and yet other patrols meet at conventions. The story world in which Mouse Guard is set allows Jason to run multiple patrols at once because guardmice typically don’t work in large bands together, since each patrol has their own mission for their mouseholds.

    This makes for an interesting dynamic when one group stumbles through the wake of another, and the situation one patrol leaves behind can become the set-up for the other’s adventure. Having one world means Jason only needs one set of NPCs. He tries to keep the parties on different sides of the map so that each patrol gets its own complete story, but at the same time, any criss-crossing that does occur helps make a more complete, lived-in world.

    Jason’s Adventure Log is a bit more meta than most; as it details not only the adventure of the game, but also the adventure of the players and the DM as they learn and grow as gamers. I know I said that Jason had a passion, but his players are just as passionate. While Jason developed the original conceit for his campaign, the players invented their hometowns and detailed them to great lengths. NPC’s have purpose and function in that they are family, friends, or personal enemies of the players’ characters.

    Let me tell you about an interesting game component that Jason uses here at Obsidian Portal that he calls Table Chatter. Here, he and his players wax poetical on many topics. Including their personal beliefs, goals, and instincts as role players, improving their fluency of play, and home made Mouse Guard Toys.

    There’s so much to this campaign. From multiple patrols, to podcasts, to the psychology of your typical Peromyscus maniculatus, Jason’s campaign is a tribute not only to his dedication to as a DM and his fandom of the Mouse Guard mythology, but also a tribute to fun. For Jason’s efforts as a DM, we lift him up on mousey shoulders and proclaim him to be this month’s Big Cheese.
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