Alright, game 2 of the new Roll20 campaign "Trade and Turpitude," taking place in the last caravan season of the year in the Southern Shires of the kingdom.
Everybody showed up. Good sign. Though I won't usually consider it a campaign until after game three. Law of averages dictate somebody will drop out by then, but everybody seems to be having a good time and are interacting with the material in the ways I like them too. I think I come up with some interesting ideas here and there, along with lots of trope stuff. Something like 40 years of GMing will give you that. And my old experiences with "out in the weeds" stuff in the deep past; Arduin and Judges Guild and such, lets me interject some more wacky elements, but mostly keeping it D&D. I look to more modern sources for ideas, random tables and such, but usually if I think the hell out of something various angles and hooks emerge that I think will be interesting to an encounter. Hey, there is plenty to brag about when you pluck most of the ideas you integrate into play out of your own head.
Haha, really, a DM's ideas should come from all over the place. Anyway, I was sort of having trouble coming up with some things. The first few games of this campaign will be travelling around with a small caravan of high-end merchants from the big city up north. Besides some village and town encounters already in my head, I need to come up with some incidental encounters that can occur along the way. Things to fit in here and there along the way when I need some filler.
I look at various random tables online, road and country encounters. Most of them aren't very filling. Things like "you meet an old man who is not what he seems," or "You see a coffin up against a tree with the lid closed. Do you investigate?" OK, these are meant to be filled in, but are hardly things you can't think up with nice creamy filling on your own. I wish these examples were a little deeper.
But if I mull on it a bit (couple refreshing adult beverages never hurt) I usually hit on something. For this game it was "..hmmm, what if the caravan comes across a troll laying across the road, passed out from drinking barrels of powerful whiskey."
We were still in the tavern with the party meeting the caravan master, having finished the previous games encounters there. But off to the caravan grounds to meet the merchants.
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wants to get too close a look at this.