The right way to write a Pirate D&D marketing campaign? ARRRR!


Arrrr, shiver me timbers, landlubber—it’s time to speak pirate! Enjoying in a pirate D&D marketing campaign could be actually enjoyable in the event you’re into the style, and are available on, who wouldn’t wish to sail the seven seas with a parrot on their shoulder and a hook for a hand? Let’s take a look at 5 suggestions that can take your pirate video games to the following stage!

1. Dig into the FUN of pirate adventures

Step one, as all the time, is to consider what makes being a pirate enjoyable! It is a recreation, so enjoyable ought to all the time be a precedence. For instance, perhaps you benefit from the aesthetics and having a cool pet, perhaps you want the concept of having the ability to sail anyplace on the planet, or perhaps you’re simply there for that shiny loot! For those who’re a participant, make sure that your pirate idea matches the GM’s imaginative and prescient and what your fellow gamers need out of the marketing campaign. For those who’re a GM, keep in mind that completely different gamers might perceive “pirate D&D marketing campaign” in numerous methods, so make sure that to determine the correct expectations in session 0. For those who don’t need them looting random ships or going to random locations you haven’t ready, there’s nothing incorrect with telling them earlier than the sport begins.

2. Lean into the tropes, then subvert them in your pirate D&D marketing campaign

Tropes are one of the crucial helpful instruments you will have as a inventive! Now, simply because a trope is fashionable amongst pirate tales, that doesn’t imply you must use it. Identical to the way you received’t use a hammer for a screw simply because it’s there within the toolbox, you want to concentrate on every trope’s function. One of the simplest ways to do that is, after all, by studying books and watching motion pictures or sequence about pirates! You can even learn non-fiction books or watch documentaries in regards to the Golden Age of Piracy if you wish to be extra correct to actuality.

I wish to group tropes into three classes that could possibly be helpful to you in the event you’re questioning easy methods to make a dnd 5e pirate:

  • Character tropes: issues {that a} character can have or do. For instance, peg legs, pet parrots, eye patches, hook palms, and saying “arr!” between each different sentence.
  • Character sort tropes: there are character archetypes. For instance, the “noble” blaggard captain, the jolly cook dinner who makes disgusting meals, and the privateer with a transparent code of honor.
  • Plot tropes: that is all about what occurs to the characters! For instance, in search of freedom, looting stuff, assaulting different ships with scimitars, and discovering misplaced treasure on a abandoned island

Now take into consideration how one can subvert them! As an alternative of copy-pasting a trope, examine it to the marketing campaign setting and discover how one can tweak it so it’s a greater match for the world.

3. Get impressed by a real-life journey to the seas!

A part of making a setting plausible is including particulars that really feel actual, and there’s no higher approach to do that than taking to the seas your self! GACUCON is the best approach to do that, as they’re a cruise ship stuffed with geeky actions like cosplaying, RPGs, and extra. Signal-ups for subsequent 12 months’s cruise are open! The D20 Cruise in 2023 can be a 5-day cruise with a 24/7 D&D conference heart, so that you’ll not solely expertise the ocean however you’ll additionally get to play your favourite video games as a lot as you need!

Once you’re on the ship, make sure that to absorb (and even write down!) every part that you just really feel. What does trying to the horizon really feel like? What does the ocean odor of? How does the recent air coming from the ocean really feel in opposition to your pores and skin? These are all issues that your pirate characters will really feel continually, so it’s necessary to get them proper! When you have private experiences, the gamers will certainly really feel it.

4. Get impressed by some actual pirate historical past and films!

Earlier I discussed that getting inspiration from completely different sources is essential. The reality is that even nice writers take inspiration from different books or motion pictures, they usually positively do their very own analysis on the matters they write about! The Historical past of Pyrates by William Defoe is a good useful resource if you wish to transcend Wikipedia in your non-fiction analysis (you may obtain it from Venture Gutenberg).

For those who’re in search of inspiration from different fiction works, right here’s a listing of films and sequence to get you began!

  • Pirates of the Caribbean (film sequence)
  • Black Sails (TV sequence)
  • Our Flag Means Dying (TV sequence)
  • Peter Pan (motion pictures, animated and live-action)
  • The Pirates of Penzance (film)
  • Treasure Planet (animated film)
  • Treasure Island (film)
  • One Piece (anime)

As you may see, regardless that these are all pirate tales, they’re from wildly completely different genres, however you may in all probability draw inspiration from all of them! Select your favorites and add them to your world’s meta doc to all the time have them useful.

5. Create nice sea monsters in your pirate D&D marketing campaign!

If you wish to run a pirate D&D marketing campaign your gamers will spend many periods on the ocean, so you must make sure that it’s an attention-grabbing place to be! To try this, make a listing of factors of curiosity that may introduce battle to the story. An instance of battle is, after all, sea monsters! Krakens and sea serpents are two of the most well-liked sea monsters, however you may provide you with your personal. The truth is, it doesn’t must be a sea monster! Something that introduces battle (one other ship, an islands, a mysterious magical phenomenon) will boost the marketing campaign sufficient.

For those who resolve to create an precise monster, although, check out our 5 suggestions for homebrewing monsters!

What are your suggestions for creating pirate characters and campaigns? Let me know within the feedback!



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