I am about to start a campaign in a forum format, and I had a couple of concepts in mind. I wanted to run it by all the fine folks here to see what you think. Any thoughts, advice, or ideas would be appreciated. thanks in advance.
You wake up and find yourself in a small enclosed space. It doesn't take you long to realize you are in a coffin. You push up on the lid, but it will not open. Bracing your back against the bottom of the pine box, you use both hands to try to force your way out. You only manage to get a small opening, and some dirt spills in. Then it hits you: you've been buried alive. You punch and kick at the wooden ceiling until you shatter it enough to break through. Soil falls into your eyes, and splinters stab your skin, but you barely notice. Your mind struggles to grasp how you got here and why you were mistaken for dead while your body struggles to reach the surface. You claw and dig desperately upward just hoping to see light soon. Luckily the hole is still fresh, so the earth is still loose, and somehow, some way, you start to ascend. Your mind is racing and panic fills your very soul, but you cannot stop. Finally, you break through far enough to see a tiny glimmer of light. You wedge open the hole a bit further so you can get some oxygen. You stop digging for a moment to take in a deep breath of fresh air. You relax, because you know you'll be okay now. As your nerves calm, you finish clearing your path to freedom, and you climb out of your hole. You look around to see that you were not the only victim, as others are freeing themselves from their pine boxes. Now that you are free, you try to think back to how this happened. "Why did they think I was dead?" "How did I get here?" "Where is here anyway?" "Who are this other people?" "Wait, who am I?" The confusion clouds your mind. You have no memory of anything before waking up in your pine box bed. The others seem equally confused. Down the hill from your resting place you see a town. It's time for some answers.
Marshall's Note: I've had this idea for a while based loosely on a campaign example I read when first came across Deadlands years ago. Mysteries always have ways of finding plots twists along the way, especially when you don't even know who you are. This campaign would be focused on finding out who you are and who had you buried. Are you more focused on answers or simply revenge?
Army regiments are running thin, so they have begun to contract freelancers to deliver supplies to some outposts. This can start one of two ways:
A.) You have been hired to deliver supplies to a Northwest Army outpost. This should be a simple mission. All you have to do is get the supplies to the Army outpost, and protect the wagon from any wild animals or bandits that might appear along the way.
B.) You have been hired to find out why the last supply run never made it back. You are to head to the Army post and watch for signs of distress along the way. If you find the supply wagon, get it to the Army outpost. Otherwise, report to the outpost and find out why the group never returned.
Whichever way it begins, this is where it goes from there:
It is near sunset, and you see the Army outpost in he distance. You can see the smoke from the fireplace, and the post looks well lit. Everything appears normal. As you approach, you notice the outpost is eerily quiet. You also notice that there are no horses tied to the posts where you would normally see them. You get to the outpost, and tie up your horses. You enter the main building and find no one. There is a stew cooking on the stove, but there are no other signs of anyone present. Your first thought is that the troops may all be out for the moment, but then you think it odd that no one was left behind to guard the outpost. It is a bad idea to amke the trek home at nightfall, so you will have to take refuge here for the night. Hopefully the troops will return soon. If not, you can investigate matters in the morning.
Marhsall's Note: This is another concept I have had for a while loosely based on the movie Ravenous. Instead of the wild west deserts the players would expect in this campaign, they have to adapt to a much more frigid environment. And once again, we have the element of mystery. Where are the troops? Will they return before morning? If they don't return, do you just go home and report their abscence, or do you investigate the disappearance? While investigating, how prepared are you for this environment, and how well do you know the area's wildlife? The ideal situation would be that none of the characters are built around the Northwest. You should be built just like a normal character in the West, and then quickly adapt to take this mission.