Tuesday, December 11, 2012

How to Make a Good Campaign Wiki

         A good wiki or website can add a lot to your campaign.  It can store information about your world, story, and characters.  It can help players keep track of loot and exp.   It can provide a place for between-session roleplaying.  But most of all, it can keep players interested and excited about your campaign.

         Let's look at the aspects of a good campaign wiki.  You can see an example side-bar off to the side of this post.

A Good Hosting Site

         A lot of people use Obsidian Portal for their campaign wiki.  This is not surprising – Obsidian Portal is made for running table top RPGs.  There are many features that make life easier, such as pre-generated blank character sheets.  However, I have found that Obsidian Portal is a bit limiting in what they will let you do (at least without upgrading).  For example, they only allow you to have one map – problematic for us map lovers out there, and for most sandbox games.

         Instead, I suggest PBWorks.  It's free, easy to use, and very, very flexible.  It will require a few more minutes of set-up (they obviously don't provide you with character sheets), but once you get the format you like, making changes is very easy.

Player Characters

         I require my players to keep their up-to-date on the wiki.  This has a number of bonuses.  It allows me to audit player extremely easily, and without making anybody feel uneasy.  It allows me to put them up against enemies that they may find fun and interesting.  It allows me to see who is under equipped, and provide them with some nice loot in the next adventure.  It allows me to quickly review a character's backstory.

        It also allows other players to look at each other.  This encourages fun group dynamics and teamwork, as well as minimizing player overlap.  Most of all, as with every page on the wiki, it gets players to the wiki and thinking about the campaign between sessions.

Adventure Log

         After every session, I write up what happened in an Adventure Log.  I tend to run fairly intricate games, so reminding the players what has happened is crucial.  Make sure to give individual characters credit for what they do.  Players love reliving glorious or dangerous moments.

Group Loot

         Dividing up group loot can be difficult for some groups.  Clarifying exactly what's what often helps.  A group loot page should not only list the items that are up for grabs, but also have a comments section for players to discuss who should get what.

Character Chat

         The Character Chat is perhaps the most important part of a wiki.  This is where players can have in-character discussions in between sessions.  The Character Chat is a fun and exciting place for your players to be engaged in the game when they are not actually playing.  It keeps enthusiasm up and is a great opportunity for roleplaying.

World Information

         If you are running a homebrew game, then you probably want to tell your players about the world.  This is a section for you to explain everything that you players should know, from geography to religion to NPCs of note.

Everything Else

         Of course, you should feel free to write up anything else you like on your wiki. I lay out my House Rules on the wiki, so everything is clear with the players.  I keep track of crafting on my wiki, as it tends to get rather complicated.  I also keep track of real world information – for example, who paid for dinner a particular night.

1 comment:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.