Kickstarter Korner for July 2018, Week 2

Each week during the Quests & Adventures live chat, Saturday at 2 p.m. eastern, Nerdarchists Dave and Ted and Nate the Nerdarch hang out live with fans from the Nerdarchy YouTube channel. It’s a chance to share announcements and news, answer questions from the live chat and generally just hang out and talk nerdy with the Nerdarchy community.

In the description of each weekly video, Nerdarchist Ted compiles a list and links to all the videos and website content from the week. But he also shares a selection of cool Kickstarter campaigns. As an avid Kickstarter supporter, he’s happy to share his favorite RPG and gaming-related Kickstarters with you, the Nerdarchy community. Enjoy!

RPG Related Kickstarters

Protip: Start you campaign in the middle of things! Next time you begin a new campaign, whether it’s D&D, Warhammer, Starfinder, Tales from the Loop, Weave, or whatever game you’re playing, put the characters in the center of action before you hit them with those four little words.

“What do you do?”

Instead of meeting in a tavern where the party receives a quest, fast forward a bit. They’ve already agreed to rescue the blacksmith’s daughter who was kidnapped by goblins, and they’re crouched in the brush looking at the entrance to the goblin caves with a small patrol of the little buggers nearby.

Instead of getting hired to steal a valuable object that will set off a chain of events leading to further adventures, start with the premise the party already took the job. And as they take the object from its resting place, an alarm sounds!

Rather than find the rogue robot causing trouble in the neighborhood, the robot found the characters and is chasing them down.

Start with characters waking up face down in the snow, barely alive in a frozen wilderness after an attack on their caravan. Or as captives, or in the middle of a battle as an enemy’s laser blast is zooming right at their head!

When you start a campaign in medias res, you get the players and the characters to take action immediately. It doesn’t matter what their backstories are, or how everyone in the party knows each other. There will be time to explore those ideas later. But for now, they’ve got to do something like defend themselves, escape, survive, or simply puzzle out how they got into the situation in the first place.

The benefit to you as a Game Master is it puts the ball in the players’ court without delay. You already know the circumstances, and you’re giving everyone else an opportunity to react and engage with the situation. This is a nifty tool for the impromptu GM too. If you come up with a premise (like the 5 W’s method) and pass the storytelling torch to the players right away, you give yourself breathing room to consider where the adventure goes from there. As a bonus, you’re letting the players steer the ship a bit too, helping to flesh out your bare bones idea.

For players, these first few moments can set up party dynamics for the rest of the campaign. In the middle of action, bonds between characters emerge based on mutual peril. A clutch move might become a defining scene for a character, a party, or an entire narrative. Characters’ reactions to danger can tell you a lot about them, and this can be a great aid especially to new roleplaying gamers. By presenting circumstances where life and death decisions are required from the get go, you discover what they’ll do to overcome challenges and help their erstwhile companions.

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