Okay, I am a first time DM, but I have been running this campaign for over a year. In 2020, we did the meetings via phone and discord. We have a session once a week, and are all good friends. We hang out have a few snacks, maybe a couple drinks, and its all in all, a good time.
However, over the past maybe couple of months, the fun has faded from the campaign aspect. I still like hanging out and everything, and I'm no burned out on the game, I have a lot of story left for them. I think it all responds around 1 player, but I can't really kick her out of the game. (GF's sister, and we play at my GF's house). But thats just the tip of the iceberg.
Some background. This is a homebrew, based around a 5e Skeleton system. I created some custom races and classes, and revamped the magic system (Mana Pool instead of Spell Slots, and less hard limits on the number of spells they could have.), All built around the 5e system.
Well, I tend to focus more on storyline and characters growth then "fight of the week" style. We can go several weeks without combat, but its all story heavy, and they all like it. It's RP heavy.
Well, we hit the climax. Mini-boss, and I've made sure they were all well prepared and geared up, even giving the a "handicap" NPC, so they had a little extra firepower. Druid, spends the hour building up the fight, summoning an elemental, which they promptly lose control of. They were told by the other players, and my demi-god in game avatar "Don't do it!", But they wanted to "do something cool". And nearly got 2 characters killed.
After that, it just kept getting worse. Insisting on "But this would be Cool!" or "Let's do this instead." And totally derailing the story, going off on random tangents that waste entire sessions. Not to mention, OP'ed wild shapes (primeval forests give some…..interesting encounters). And I just wasn't enjoying the campaign aspect, halfway tempted to just stop, cancel the campaign, or start over with a new one.
So, when I tried to put a slight limit on their wild-shape forms being totally OP'ed. Suddenly, I'm the bad guy. or one character who seems to be either really great, or really bad in fights, no middle ground, gets upset. Our fire mage who seems a little preoccupied with "quality time" with his Pixie Familar. or our Berserker, who hasn't really been able to do much due to constant interruptions Once again, just a step away from cancelling the whole campaign, because, I just can't find it fun anymore.
What do I do here? I have a good amount of story left, but I having a hard time even wanting to play it out with them. How can I put limits on things NOW, over a year into the game? And what, if any, should the limits be? I'm at my wits end.
(Note: most the people are great, and their characters are just…..very unique, with quirky personalities)
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