By Jason Campbell… and You!

In our cooperative campaign creation series, we will create a campaign setting together step by step. I’ll propose some options and ideas, and you propose your own ideas in the comments! In this series we’re working on a homebrew sci-fi campaign.

In this edition we continue preparing for an upcoming long term Sci-Fi TTRPG campaign. We’ll do this step by step, so we can get input from our readers! Feel free to comment below! The universe and scenario will be entirely home brewed so we won’t be relying on any existing story universe’s lore. The game might be played either online (via discord, Zoom, Roll20 or similar) or in person at a table, so we won’t consider VTT support as an essential element. Let’s also presume that we don’t have an established group of players, so their preferences won’t factor into the choices we make.  

Last week we looked at what game system to use. We’ve decided to go with Monte Cook Games’ Cypher System. The second question is, what is our setting? I’ll note my personal feelings along with the potential choices:

  1. Expansive futuristic universe. An example of this would be the Star Trek universe. (Nearly) all of the civilizations encountered are futuristic from the point of view of our current technology. Although there are unknown planets to be discovered the majority are known such that many different galaxies are known to the United Federation of Planets.
  2. Expansive fantastic universe. An example of this would be the Star Wars universe. Like Star Trek it is large, spanning many galaxies, but unlike Star Trek there are non-scientific (sorry midi-chlorians) elements that could be described as fantastic, verging on the magical.
  3. Advanced tech on a futuristic but realistic solar system. This would describe a game that takes place in our solar system but in the future. Either Earth has discovered space travel or Earth has been visited by an advanced alien culture.
  4. Dystopian future. An example of this would be Blade Runner. There can be many reasons but the result is a dark depressing society.
  5. Post-apocalyptic. An example of this would be Mad Max. Civilization on Earth (or a close facsimile of) has collapsed. Futuristic technology existed but now is lost or at least rare.

So what do you think? Do you have a favorite setting? Do you think one works particularly well in a TTRPG? Comment below and come back next week to see what we do with your suggestions!

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