Street Samurai’s scanner must have picked up something! What with all that gothic neon technology rising from the deep, I’m sure it was like a breath of fresh air for her to sense a scifi wifi signal. We may never know how many cyber-pterodactyls she had to ride to get to Aqua Vitae, but let’s hope her endeavors are successful!

In the meantime, let’s talk about interweaving narratives. Although I must admit to you: my comic has outstripped my experience here. You see, I’ve always wanted to run a party vs. party campaign, alternating weeks between groups and letting each session inform the next. After all, there’s nothing more unpredictable and plot-twisty than the antics of other PCs.

  • Revolution Party decides to assassinate the cardinal. Zealot Party has to figure out who unleased the hunter-killer construct that terrorized the Cathedral District.
  • Ghoul Party has blocked up an exploratory mineshaft to protect Ghoul Town. Dwarf Party has to find another way to retrieve the their ancestors’ stolen grave goods.
  • Kobold Wingz Party has to sabotage their rivals. Goblin Pizza Party has to deliver an extra large with extra scabs to Themberchaud’s cave.

You could also opt for the cooperative route, allowing groups to do a sending or two between sessions to keep their allies abreast of a mutual threat. So in 25 words or less:

  • Cardinal is a demon in disguise. Members of the Glorious Revolution cannot get into his rectory. You Holy Bros will have to take him out.
  • It was a frame job! Mindflayers stole your Hammer of the Forge Fathers, not Ghoul Town. Help us avoid war. Seek them out in the— [Damn, ran out of words!]
  • We all burned and squashed if Themberchaud hungry! We provide zesty dipping sauce, you provide bread stix. Deal? Words left? How many? Butts butts butts.

Whatever flavor of intertwined narrative you opt for, however, it’s clearly going to take a lot of coordination. You’ll have to account for the fact that the PCs can never be in the same place at the same time during a normal session. You’ll have to plan special “crossover sessions” when you’ve got both groups. Then you’ll have to either enlist a co-GM or deal with a megaparty of 10 nerds at once. Or I suppose you could split them up by mixing the parties. Or maybe have special guest player appearances between groups. Or you could just run a West Marches game and let all of the above happen naturally. Or you could go for the mega version of this style with 25+ players and multiple GMs in a dimension-hopping you-can-play-anything-from-anywhere setting with interplanar threats threatening to destroy the multiverse.

Yikes! Now you understand why I keep talking myself out of this. As Street Samurai so rightly says, who the crap has time?

What about my gamer brethren out there in the great wide Web? Have you ever managed to pull off one of these “multiple parties affecting one another” narratives? Was it a mega-combat at a con? A collaboration between multiple GMs? How did you handle scheduling? Give us all your best tips and tricks for running one of these suckers, because it feels like a mammoth undertaking!


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