Campaign Diagesis

Axes: Campaigns 1.1

These are also issues for campaign design, but they deal with what the GM prepares. They describe the characteristics of the campaign or setting. (The word "diagetic" is purported to mean setting-related; confirmation of this is still being sought.)


	Realistic	|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|	Fantastic
			0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

This is a measure of the extent to which a setting abides by the same physical, sociological, and psychological rules that govern the real world. (Of course, we may not all completely agree on what those are!)

"0" - Faithful model of reality
Example: This is something scientists are still trying to achieve!
"10" - Outlandishly fantastical setting which violates everything we know about how the world works
Example: Lovecraft's stories set in the Dreamlands come close.


	Nihilistic	|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|	Heroic
			0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Will the PCs prevail against overwhelming odds? Or are the PCs doomed, and it's only a matter of time?

"0" - "Abandon hope, all ye who enter here."
Example: Call of Cthulhu
"10" - The PCs almost can't lose.
Example: 4-color supers campaigns


	Mundane		|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|	Conflictual
			0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Is the setting rife with conflict (war, political intrigue, famine, religious conflict, etc.)? Or are things pretty quiet, and it's up to the PCs to find something interesting to do?

"0" - "Doesn't anything ever happen around here?"
Example: Kansas
"10" - "Whoa! Slow down!"
Examples: Bosnia, early 15th-century Europe, cyberpunk settings

Note on Terminology: "Mundane" seems to imply "boring", which is not really the intent.

Outline | Preparation | Diagesis | Improvisation | Metagame

Last updated: 12 October 1995
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Copyright © 1995 Leon von Stauber. All rights reserved.