Comparing Generators Campaign and Published Adventures

We defined a generators campaign in a previous post and now look at why you might want to run it instead of a published adventure.

Keep on the Borderlands to Enemy Within

Published adventures let you use the time, energy and work of others to take care of the detail and direction of your game. These adventures may last a single session of play or take years as in the case of some Pathfinder Adventure Paths.

Keep on the Borderlands Some adventures define the starting experience of many when they first play an RPG, such as Keep of the Borderlands from the D&D Basic set, the Enemy Within campaign of Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay and more recently the Lost Mines of Phandelver for 5th Edition D&D.

Do You want a Published Adventure...?

The good adventures will provide you with well-though out plots and encounters, keeping you and your players interested. Some provide a common experience with others who have played the same module.

You still have to do preparation for a published adventure, which is to read and understand it, and make changes if you want to. Also you might be one of the GMs who can't resist the urge to rewrite the adventure, or maybe your group has a talent for avoiding or trashing adventures.

So use published adventures if you

  • Have enough time to read and absorb the adventure (or entire campaign) without making large scale changes to it.
  • You trust the adventure you are using to provide a good experience
  • There is a good chance your group won't derail or bypass the adventure
  • You are excited to run the adventure or want to share common experience with other gamers
  • You are trying out a new system

Or Do You want a Generators Campaign?

The core concepts of the Generators Campaign are giving control to your players, reducing down the prep time, always having content you can go to and removing many of the decisions that you might not want to make.

There are challenges will be help if you know the group of players, the game system and the setting being used, or at least one of these! It will require you to be able to let go of treasured plot ideas and give up a certain amount of control.

  • You want your players to run the story
  • You are happy improvising with the help of generators
  • You like weaving player decisions, plots and game events into an ongoing story
  • You want the option of running a game on 5 minutes preparation time.

Lower Prep Time?

So here we considered the options of a published adventure against that of a generators campaign. If you write your own material then the points for a generators campaign still apply.

Either way you will be interested in our next topic of Lower Prep Time...