2023 Modern Grognard Campaign Pitches

2023 Modern Grognard Campaign Pitches

Nov 11, 2023    

Disclaimer: This is a personal project exploring the intersection of Generative AI and creative expression - not a commercial work. AI images created with DALL·E 3. Iterative content is written with the assistance of Large Language Models

Teenage Mutant Ninja Crawl Classics

I asked for AI for hoverboards and all I got was this awesome poster - DALL·E 3
I asked for AI for hoverboards and all I got was this awesome poster - DALL·E 3

New York City, dudes! It’s not just a city, it’s THE last Earth metropolis in the most gnarly post-disaster temporal causality meltdown! Every human, mutant, manimal, and radical plantient would trade their coolest skateboard tricks to hang in this epic concrete playground. It’s a whole other level of awesome compared to the gnar-gnar radiation deserts of New Jersey or the mondo bizarro terror jungles of Connecticut.

Imagine this: neon-lit video game arcades buzzing with the latest alien-whooping games, totally tubular TV news shows, and, hold onto your shells, the most righteous pizza delivery service this side of the galaxy! Cowabunga, it’s like living in a slice of pepperoni paradise!

But here’s the kicker, my ninja dudes: you gotta keep those martial arts skills sharper than a katana blade. With the sneaky Foot Clan lurking in every shadow, only the most bodacious fighters can truly call this place home. So grab your nunchucks, tie that bandana tight, and get ready to kick shell in the wildest, most pizza-fueled city ever!”

  • Genre: Post-apocalypse Weird Science Fantasy, Stone Age super science
  • Play Style: Gonzo OSR, flexible railroad, main storyline, ultra-violent retro silliness
  • Elements of play: exploration, post-apocalypse survival, randomized characters
  • System and Level: Mutant Crawl Classics, starting with a zero-level funnel
  • GM’s comment: don’t overthink it, I’ve never played a TMNT game or Gamma World. This is going to be a mashup of lots of things.

Sigil and the Domains of Dread

portal hopping into Ravenloft - DALL·E 3
portal hopping into Ravenloft - DALL·E 3

Ah, welcome, my unwitting guests. You hail from Sigil, the City of Doors - now an isolated bastion, severed from the vast expanse of the multiverse. A chilling silence has fallen, as planar gates, once teeming with otherworldly energies, stand eerily closed. The realms beyond - Outer, Material, Elemental, and even the Astral Plane - remain cruelly beyond reach, and the divine magics have withered into nothingness.

But ah, there is a glimmer in this enveloping darkness. The cunning factions of Sigil have unearthed a sliver of hope - a clue shrouded in enigma. The gate towns of the Outlands, once vibrant crossroads of the planes can once again be reached by portal but languish, engulfed in the haunting mists of Ravenloft, MY REALM.

I Strahd von Zarovich beckon you into the Domains of Dread, where shadows whisper and fear reigns. It is here, amidst the twisted landscapes and lurking horrors, that you must seek the truth of the multiverse and decide the fate of Sigil.

  • Genre: Weird Fantasy, Grim-dark Horror, City and Dungeon campaign
  • Play Style: Characters-driven story, flexible railroad, main storyline
  • Elements of play: exploration, creative problem solving, factions
  • System and Level: D&D 5e; 8th level start
  • Character options: Planar characters preferred, No Clerics or Paladins
  • GM’s comment: This would be an attempt to get some high-level D&D in. The Planescape boxed set adventure got horrible reviews so I’m going to mine other books for content and try to make it work.

Ghost in the Sprawl

Cyperpunk but we play to find out what happens - DALL·E 3
Cyperpunk but we play to find out what happens - DALL·E 3

Alright, listen up, ‘cause I ain’t got all day. You’re stepping into the heart of Neo Macao, a city where neon isn’t just a light, it’s a way of life. The streets are a pulsing circuit board and your brain? It’s just another node in this sprawling city-state Cyberware network.

You? You’re an outsider, beyond the fringes of the law. This city, it’s a battleground; street triads, amped-up corporate cyborgs, and corrupt cops - they’re all just reflections in your mirror shades. Every corner you turn, it’s another decision point. You gonna stick it to the man? Or maybe you’re playing a bigger game, trying to stop World War 4 from lighting up the skyline. Or hell, maybe you’re bold enough to throw in with the rebels, fighting tooth and nail against an AI-infested corporate takeover that’s got humanity in its cold, metal grip.

This is more than a game, it’s a deep dive into a post-humanist dystopia. The cyberpunk genre? It’s not just about tech and cool gadgets. It’s about survival, making choices when every option seems wired to blow. It’s about carving out your own path in a world that’s trying to script your every move.

So gear up, jack in, and get ready to run the neon-lit gauntlet of Neo Macao. You’ve got a city to save, a world to change, or maybe just to watch burn. Your call. Just remember, in this digital jungle, every choice you make echoes in eternity. Stay sharp. Stay alive. And maybe, just maybe, you’ll rewrite the story.

  • Genre: Cyberpunk
  • Play Style: collaborative world building, main story derived 100% from your character backgrounds
  • Elements of play: non-initiative, narrative-combat, theater of the mind
  • System and Level: Powered by the Apocalypse, with play-book archetypes rather than traditional RPG character builds
  • GM’s comment: I’m going to need to do more research to find a system book to base the game on. The Sprawl and The Veil are the two main Powered by the Apocalypse (PbtA) systems and I’ve read neither of them but I think I’m more up for embracing PbtA or Forged in the Dark style game than learning Cyberpunk RED or the MÖRK BORG variant CY_BORG.