New Campaign, opinions...



Jan 26, 2004 10:25:37
Well Met,

I recentlly picked up the 3E Ravenloft items, (haven't run the Mists since 2nd E, but wanted to try.) I've always loved Ravenloft and am looking forward to getting a campaign going.

Here's my idea to start off.

PC's awake to find themselves within an Asylum/Sanitarium within Dementlieu. They have no knowledge of how they got there, and find themselves "Prisoners" within it.

Here's the catch, through the force of the evil powers, they're going to be forced to relive the last days of the Asylum. There's going to be a major breakout in which all the loonies run havoc, while the PC's are going to be caught up in it. They are going to be forced to follow in the footsteps of the loonies as they murder/massacure, and everything else. They'll have options as to what to do, but if they don't follow the footsteps they'll find themselves back at the beginning.

Now I know that it might be annoying and repetitious, but I think it could truly grasp the whole Horror/fear concept to do it this way.

What do you all think? Any questions?


Jan 28, 2004 10:00:26
I like the concept but I think you need to go a little further with it. Perhaps the reason they continue to live the life of the “loonies” is because unknown to the party a curse was placed on them or they somehow picked up a cursed item that belonged to a powerful Vistani who was killed in the breakout. The only way to break the curse is by somehow destroying the item or righting the wrong.

They should have visions of a “guide” who they aren’t sure is really or their imagination (maybe only one person in the group should have the vision) who gives them advise that almost sounds evil but will actually help them break the curse.

Over all I love the idea. I just love using Asylums in general; there is just so much you can do with them. And in the Ravenloft world it is often the “insane” who see the world for the truth.


Jan 28, 2004 10:27:09
I've been toying with the idea of either having it a mass "reliving of events", or that it actually happens. This would have those lunatics that do escape to become foes in the long term sense....

Another question, what's everyone's opinions about firearms? I'm interested in tossing them in. The PC's are going to have access to a lot of unusual weapons at the start. (scalple, shard of glass, saps, stuff like that.)


Jan 28, 2004 14:04:52
Agreeing with LilDog, I love the use of asylums. Having a storehouse of insanity is always a great way to creep players out.

In terms of your adventure ideas, I'd advise you to check out two great sources of information.
The first is the Bleak House 2e boxed set--in it, the PCs are trapped in Dr. Dominiani's asylum and have to break out with the infamous Dr. Van Richten, who is a fellow prisoner. This supplement is absolutely fantastic at detailing experiments you can use and how a truly frightening an asylum can be.
The second is any information you can find on Forlorn. There used to be an adventure (I don't remember the name--forgive me) that detailed a time shift within Castle Tristenoira there. That feel would pretty much exactly be what you're looking for.

Also, it's been my opinion that firearms truly make Ravenloft an interesting setting. No other D&D setting makes use of them, which adds a lot of uniqueness to the weapon choice. If firearms are available, I'd use them.
As for the improvised weapons...treat scalpels as daggers, bottles and chair legs as clubs and if worse comes to worse, make up things on the fly. I'm sure you'll be good to go.

Cheers, man! Good luck with it!


Jan 30, 2004 9:38:34
Originally posted by SornDuskryn
[b]I've been toying with the idea of either having it a mass "reliving of events", or that it actually happens.

Actually you may want to take a look at the module From the Shadows. It's a free download and it's the last part of the Grand Conjunction (I'm currently putting my party through the first part right now).

Spoilers ahead------

In it Azlin has the party beheaded yet keeps them all alive. He then sends their souls back in time to Strahd’s day of reckoning to do something for him. If they fail and die he sends them back again.

When they go back in time they lose a large amount of experience points with each trip back (so they want to avoid dying and having to make repeated trips back) but they are sent back into the bodies of people from that time so they have to play the stats of whoever they appear in. This could be a commoner, a soldier or whatever.

In your case they can appear in the bodies of the insane. Some can be powerful wizards who because magic is condemned in Ravenloft were treated as insane or just average patients. But while in the bodies of the patients they can be inflicted with whatever mental problem that patient has. See bugs crawling on them, have unnatural fears of the floor, split personalities, voices in their heads, see things that aren't really there, think their friends are saying things they aren't or are really monsters, etc.

You can have a lot of fun with that one.


Jan 30, 2004 10:01:25
This is what I have so far...

The "Doctor" who runs the facilities, is named Pierre Rorhan, going to have him be a sorcerer of mild experience. His thoughts on the "insane" are that they must be cured by whatever means neccessary. This includes experimenting on them with various drugs, treatments, and the like. It's going to border on an obsession with a little insanity in it as well...

Was thinking of having the PC's wake up within one of the mass cells, strapped in straight jackets and having no clue how the hell they got there, or even who one another is. Basically they're individuals picked up by the Mists and plopped down within this Sanitaruim within Dementlieu. There are going to be minor clues as to what's going on, say froom corespondences between Pierre and Victor Mordenheim, concerning treatments, and other scientific things.

Still trying to work out the breakout senario. So far I've created a massive Sanitarium, two floors and a basement, with two wings and a central facility. i.e. It's a bloody big place to wander. So it's going to be massive, with crazies and staff alike. Should I keep it big or tone it down?


Jan 30, 2004 10:26:12
Have you ever watched the movie Groundhog Day, with Bill Murray? In case you haven't, it is about a guy who lives the same day over and over again. It may be good for some inspiration.


Jan 30, 2004 12:24:34
I have seen that. I was thinking something along those lines, in that if they don't follow a laid out path (the actions of the insane), they'd find themselves back at the beginning. I know that could be rather annoying, but they would have free reign of the asylum, just specific points they have to do/affect.

What do you think would be better for the Doctor? A sorcerer or a Wizard?


Jan 30, 2004 16:45:13
I am always biased towards the wizard, especially one heavily involved in research.


Jan 30, 2004 18:01:59
I started my group out with a game of about four sessions, then killed them off with a mind-flayer. Then I told them to make Forgotten Realms characters and history. When they had made it I put them into a sanitarium sans memory.

Awakening was a scene in which the players were hit with some instrument that went through their skull. Think of a dull pointed nail that is hit with a hammer in some precise spoit.

They came to reality with immense pain surrounding them. Then they were subjected to several strange questions all in some way relating to the previous campaign in which they died.

The players had gotten into Ravenloft from the Realms and then went all nuts and lived through the game which ended with a mind flayer (incidentally the last thing they experienced in that game was the pain in the forehead and also the first thing that started them off). In Ravenloft reality this just meant that they were total loonies who experienced the same vision, they ended up in sanitarium and were healed because the doctors thought that they had excess brain activity which should be decreased. Luckily the doctors were right

As of re-living - maybe your players had some kind of an order which they had overstepped (somehow this must come out inside the game) and thus someone died, wording a curse that forced them to "madly obey the path of terror until its end", re living it as they stray.


Feb 10, 2004 15:09:59
The scenario looks promising, but I'd like to know *why* are the PCs having to repeat everything? I understand that you want to create a story that makes them act crazy, but what is the in game rationale for this?