Is Dark Sun Already Growing Tyr-ing?

I know we're just a little bit into the Dark Sun campaign, but it already seems to not be moving along. I thought the "ensemble" style would help fill out characters and give people alot to work with for their characters before they actually got together with other PCs, if ever.

When I pitched the concept, people seemed to like the idea, immediately picking up on how the dynamics worked, since most had seen the show Heroes, and were familiar with the style. Through character creation, things went smoothly, and everyone was pitching ideas and asking questions to help fill out the personalities and such, and I had no problem placing them in my version of Tyr.

Then actual game play came up.

Things are sluggish. It's hard getting characters motivated to want to do anything other than their workaday jobs, and pacing is killing me. It takes a whole session to knock one day out, because it seems like there's an assumption that you HAVE to play out your whole day, even if you do nothing. I don't know where this assumption came from, as I never stated that's how you have to do things. It seems common sense to me NOT to play out going to work, if that work is uneventful. I try to hit the high spots, like if anything changes, and then push the action along to cue my players, but it doesn't seem to work.

I have tried my hardest to lace everyone's action with hooks, teasers, and threads that they can ride if they want, but perhaps they aren't juicy enough. This makes me wonder what, if anything WILL be enough to make them want to look at the world outside of their non-PC lives. I would say non-adventurer, but I don't necessarily want them out dungeoneering or conquering the wastes one braxat at a time. I just want to see pro-action, and I'm stumped on how to do that. I've postponed my game for two weeks (and Paul has started running The World's Largest Dungeon alternatively) to give myself more prep time and think about how to better integrate things that would personally motivate or intrigue each character.

If anyone out there can give me some hints/tips/suggestions, then that would be awesome. I feel like I'm spinning my wheels on this campaign, and that makes me sad, because of how much I love the setting

1 comment:

Josh said...

As a DM in any game, we, on the surface, don't want to railroad players down a path they don't want to go. However, in order to get going down the plot/plots we have prepared, we as DM have to take away as many choices they PCs have until they "choose" to explore the path we've prepared. Now if you look at shows like Heroes, average people are shaken out of their normal lives by extraordinary circumstances. Powers, conspiracies, fear, all these things should rip the PCs from their daily lives and put them on the run/adventuring because *not* to would mean certain death, execution, imprisonment, etc. As much as I like the idea of a sandbox setting to go explore, if the PCs aren't going to step out their front door on their own, you'll need some kind of element to kick their asses out of it.
Some templar needs to cover up something shady he's into, and blames the PCs, now they're on the run!
Dregoth sends dray assassins after the PCs! Why?
The Veiled Alliance had the PCs names on a list that the templars of another city found, and they've come to Try to interrogate them.

I'm sure you've plenty of your own adventure seeds ready, but in order to get them playing one of them, you gotta do a bit of railroading.