I've been a part of a D&D group now for over a year, and its about time that I started to blog about the group's exploits. I wasn't always the DM, as it took a few months to 'gain my sea-legs' as it were for 5th edition D&D. Coming from a 1st & 2nd edition background, this was no easy task - considering that I have little to no experience with 3x or Pathfinder editions.
Most of the core group of players have some background with 3.5, and a couple of us have experience with earlier editions, so it may be obvious to see the direction this CJ will go: a sandboxy, open-ended, "Old Skull" campaign inflicted on "modern" players, and if this is what you expected, this is what you will get.
I am the type of DM that loves to create worlds and cultures specifically for players to explore and experience. I never set out to script a campaign for a group to muddle their way through. If a 'script' ever comes out of my campaign, it is because the players wrote it, I simply guide it in directions that will provide the most conflict, entertainment, drama, or enjoyment for the players.
That is, the players pick the direction they want to go, I simply illuminate what they see, hear, taste, and feel when they pass through or even when they get there - that speck on the map that they told me they wanted to go to. Often, NPCs and monsters will already have a plan, but those plans never come into play unless the players enable them to do so. Events are set in motion by the characters' involvement and not the other way around.
I advise my players to never create a background for their characters, because the first few levels ARE their background. Nevertheless, players will do it anyway, and then find out that those characters don't really fit well into the sandbox I've set before them. Its as if those players have already scripted a path for their characters - a path that may or may not exist in a sandbox, except through many sessions of play.
So, anyhoo, without further ado, this introduction to my Campaign Journal is over, clearing the way for actual Journal Entries, House Rule posts, Design Notes, and NPC/Encounter Highlights. Eh, hopefully those are enough categories to work with. I'll undoubtedly create more categories, and wind up not using one or more of the categories I've already pigeon-holed myself with. On with the show!