This week on Dungeon World

This week on Dungeon World

This week on Dungeon World

I’m trying to work out how to best play DW as self-contained episodes.

What I’m looking for

– flexibility so game can continue even one or two people (out of five) are missing each session, perhaps even different GMs

– new port every session, creating a montage of action since last session

– start each session knee deep in the action, already committed

– end each session whenever, yet allow success and trouble influence the montage that sets up next session   

I’m thinking sort of mission- or job-based session with a varying crew. 

Things I’m considering using to prep each session

– Work through Steadings

– Advance Campaign Fronts, with gods and armies and dragons etc.

– New business, inspired by Campaign Fronts but also random like Finding Work from the Planarch Codex

– Unfinished Business, when sessions don’t end neatly; something for influencing the montage and next session set up

– Of course, follow all the GM agenda, principles, move etc.

I’ve got some ideas for how to resolve Unfinished Business, possibly randomly, but I’m wary because I often overcomplicate things like this. I mean, maybe something like an In A Wicked Age Oracles. Or am I missing an obvious simple way to create such an in-between action montage? 

14 thoughts on “This week on Dungeon World”

  1. This is one of those times I wish I could do more than +1. The only way I can possibly keep a FtF campaign going is to build systems like these. I’ve had varying levels of success with other systems. Looking forward to hearing how it works in DW for you!

  2. I didn’t think of love letters, maybe because I hadn’t considered making one for the whole party. I’ve had lots of fun making love letters for individuals, and though they’re often a fair bit of work, they do work great. Maybe just one party love letter would be less work.

  3. Sure, there’s an example party love letter in Dark Heart, but you can use them to do whatever. You could even have 1 move per player contained in a big love letter to everyone.

  4. Peter Johansen nice idea! I hadn’t considered this either. I wonder how much work it would take to prep. I hadn’t planned out mapping great swathes of wilderness, I wonder if I’d need to. And how well Fronts would work in this set up…

  5. That arsludi (“West Marches”) article is amazing and has been an inspiration for a few of my 4e campaigns in the past.

    I love (if I recall it coming from that article correctly) the idea of the table with a (incomplete) map carved in it of the nearby area – dangers, points of interest, etc. This table has made an appearance in a few of my DW games already. The players have yet to add to it, though that is coming.

    I’ll also be planning a very episodic campaign and will be using Hexographer to map the world as the players explore, discover and often times dictate many of it’s elements.

    UPDATE: Here we go, page 2 “Shared World: The Table Map”…

  6. I’ve thought about this and a full-blown West Marches game is not for me. I want to honour the Microscope game we played to set up the world collaboratively. We’re a single group of 4 players (give or take), on a fairly set schedule, with no set GM (we’ll probably rotate). I don’t think this set up will support the many advantages of a full-blown WM game.

    But I totally support the core principle of West Marches: players drive play and determine their characters’ fates.

    So, what I’m going to propose to my group is: at of the end of each session, the party decides on their broad direction for next session, not for this particular adventure but where they are heading longer term. Then, the next session GM preps a love letter, or a least a custom move, honouring those longer-term objectives and starting next session somewhere in that direction, knee deep in action. The love letter would decide great swathes of events and consequences that flow from the parties choice of direction and tie the players into the larger scale events of the campaign fronts.

    At least, that’s how I’ll pitch it.

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