Friday, November 1, 2013
Ruminations on OD&D: The Endgame
First off, "name level" characters who construct strongholds attract followers. Why not base part of a campaign around that? Once the characters establish themselves, say 3rd level or so, they can offer their services to a name-level NPC who has established a stronghold. Perhaps this NPC is just starting out, so to speak. His stronghold is small and he is looking to expand. The PCs can pledge their service, and the NPC can send them on "missions". He can offer them support services, like healing and magic item identification, in exchange for finding whatever loot he desires. Maybe their liege is a cleric who sends them on a mission to recover the shrine idol stolen by bandits. The PCs would return the idol, and perhaps a tithe of other treasures recovered, and keep the rest.
I wouldn't base an entire campaign around this concept, but for a few levels, it could bring a logical structure to things. Plus, if the PCs have been honorable in their oath, when they reach name-level they will have a powerful friend and ally who can help them establish their own domain. Which brings me to . . .
Point the second. Once the PCs reach name-level, I think it would provide a nice break from the high-level game to have followers become PCs every now and then. Have each player fully create a follower, and sometimes have a session or three using the party of followers. If the campaign continued long enough, one day those followers will establish their own strongholds. I know it sounds ambitious, but the setting would develop strongholds, villages and towns, and politics very organically if it could be pulled off.