Living Forgotten Realms

Submitted by Mapache on Tue, 2010-11-09 17:07

Living Forgotten Realms, the current ongoing public play campaign for Dungeons & Dragons 4E, is a heck of a lot of fun, but the Living aspect is a complete farce. Every week you get together with a random cast of other people that you've probably seen before, but you don't have any particular reason for getting together with. You then condense the vivid, exciting backstory and detailed appearance you have made up for your character down to a single-sentence introduction. You will be lucky if the other players remember your name, class, and race. (Even if you tell them otherwise, they will assume your character is the same gender as you unless you give them a name like Ovaria Birthgiver or Mansong Crotchgrabber.)

Then, some random stranger that may have been present in a previous module, but whose name you will forget before he or she is done talking anyway, approaches you and tells you a relative has disappeared. Being in the habit of agreeing to take on vague, dangerous missions from random strangers, especially when they can't pay (which you don't care about because the gods see to it that the virtuous are always rewarded), you agree. If the missing person has an identifiable keepsake, then you sadly inform the quest giver that their friend is already dead. If they do not have anything that could be brought back as proof of finding them, then hurray, they're alive!

You then go and ask around, typically entering a posh establishment of some sort while still dressed like the band of vicious mercenary thugs you are, eventually encountering some bandits or cultists of Shar next to a broken-down wagon. After that, you'll probably have to go into the sewers for another fight, before your confrontation with the boss who is guarding your target. After defeating the last of the bad guys, you get a hurried denouement, because it's midnight and everyone wants to go home now. Aside from your loot, you get to write down important, life-defining events like CRUD13, which, hopefully, will be referenced once in a mod which you'll never even see, where it would mean that you'd get the initial quest pitch from the NPC whose name you forgot four hours ago instead of a new, random NPC with a different name.