Hello everyone, I am a new DM, and I started my very first campaign, last week. You can see the problems I faced here: https://www.reddit.com/r/DMAcademy/comments/kznapa/how_do_i_try_to_not_force_the_theme_of_my_campaign/?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3
With my very first campaign, I wanted to have a short homebrew campaign because I thought it would be easier. For a bit of context with the players, they are people I have known for a long time or for at least a few years. There's Roger and Jack (fake names). There's also another player, we'll call him Jim, he's an experience D&D player. Jim also is a DM for a homebrew campaign with me and a few other people. In Jim's campaign, if the group is not together or someone attempts to derail the campaign, he just blocks it and says no. In my campaign, I wanted my players to have free range into doing things. Whether they wanted to go off on their own for a bit, but come back to the group because they know they are too weak to be alone. My campaign is about how the king of the capital is giving three well known people (the players) a quest to save his son (the prince) who has gone missing on an adventure, and they want him to be returned without any damages to the son. Jim's character is Lawful Neutral and they said their character is very nature like and will do good things. During my first session, Jim's character had a sassy, but annoyingly stubborn character. They kept having to force their way into things, and I tried stopping them multiple times. I succeeded a few times, but failed the rest. Today we had our second session, and they did something completely 180 to what I had planned. The players are at a tavern where they last heard that the location of the prince was near or in this tavern. A lot of mysterious things happened during the first session and it got Roger and Jack intrigued, but Jim's character was sort of intrigued, but also distant to the main quest. In today's session, I had planned, and in fact told them before the session started, that they will get lots of combat during this session because it's what they asked for from last session. Roger and Jack's characters entered the "dungeon" early, which I didn't mind much, since I had to change a few things, but Jim's character decided to forgot about the other players and head back to the capital. When Jim said that, it completely caught me off guard. I didn't want to stop him and say you can't do that because I felt like it wouldn't fit the scene or with their character's background, so I let them head back. After some tough combat scenes with Roger and Jack, I ended the session and Roger and Jack left the voice chat. Jim and I had a solo talk, and was giving me advice on how I should keep the group together. I told him I wanted to give you guys free range, and I wasn't planning on someone to derail the campaign by deciding to go away from the quest they were given. He told me out of character on why he was returning to the capital, he wanted to go to the king and ask for reinforcements. I was confused when he told me that because if the king personally gave three people a quest to find his son, why would the king give him reinforcements. I responded to him by just saying "If you guys decide to do your own thing, I don't mind breaking the campaign, and doing solo campaigns." I honestly meant what I said because with at least Roger's background story, I could make a campaign based off of it. If this is derailing, can anyone please help me out? If this isn't derailing, can anyone at least offer advice on how I can change things, please?
Thank you in advance if you offer any advice
- Consider having a side campaign
- [QUESTION] My players killed the prince and I don’t know how to proceed
- I really enjoy running one-shots in the same universe as my main campaign so my players stay invested in it.
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