The New Nerd Fort

Ok, I’ve got a new idea.

Since the horror of the bedbugs is over and my new house is actually being properly put together, I can think about how the Nerd Fort can be done in a better way than before. And I realized something that we are, in fact, missing.

The basic idea is that I am doing the podcast so that other people will be 1) entertained by it, and 2) learn something from it (also I want experience, and I want to play, etc, etc.).

The first point is a little bit automatic – if you’ve downloaded it, then you probably know what you’re getting in to and will probably enjoy it. The second point is what I’m focusing on here. I think that is the primary way that give something of value to my listeners.

The controlling idea behind my podcast is that if you listen to the Nerd Fort podcast, you will be able to learn something that will help enlighten your game, or at least give you a perspective on things that you didn’t have before.

To that end, I want to change how we do our episodes: I want each episode to be played at a new character level. i.e.: Episode 1 will be with fresh new characters, right out of the tavern. As the episode comes to an end, we have some sort of cliffhanger that sets up the next episode. At the beginning of the next episode, we are starting at level 2. This series is limited to 21-23 episodes¬† – one for each level, one to account for the ‘episode zero’ and maybe some epic play or other considerations.

This will make it very fast-paced – which tends to make for more exciting play. Both listeners and players will have a greater sense of accomplishment and ‘doing something’ very easily. We will be able to display how the game acts differently at different levels. There are more advantages that I am having trouble articulating.

It is possible that Sterbz will want to have a cohesive adventure for this, and possibly just make a bunch of random or interesting encounters that don’t actually fit together whatsoever. It’s really up to him. Much more work = much better storyline, but that is a lot of work for a campaign designed to only last about 5-6 months.

It may have some negative consequences.

  • Maybe the listeners enjoy having us taking 3-4 episodes to level up.
  • There is the adventure writing aspect that may be frustrating – it’s hard to plan for exactly when the characters will be in the right place for a level up.
  • We often play for about 4 hours at a time. After trimming down some of the boring non-gaming stuff, personal life, and other not-for-the-podcast stuff, I usually get about 2 or 3 episodes out of a single session, so we will have to have our characters leveled up and ready to go long before we even start recording – more load on the players and GM alike.
  • Most adventures expect you to take multiple sessions at around the same level throughout the entire module – this means that published adventures are going to need to have some heavy modification, and homebrew ones will be even harder to write than before.