Name: Stan the Man
Comments: I recently listened to your show were you did the gamer forge on the shadow plane. I have a simiular game going on with my group but my group has had to undertake a trip to the Plane of Dreams.
Now I have a rough idea of how to run the game there. But I thought I would get your guys input first?
Gamer Forge Response:
When walking in the Plane of Dreams (and not on sunshine), DCR says:
1. Time passes, things change. Think Inception. All that talk about how time passes differently in a dream. Also true here. The longer they stay in the dream, the more things will change around them. Spires get taller, forests get...forest-ier? This will be key in setting up for the climax as the heroes leave the dream, but more on that later. Also, the dream is a two sided coin. It should represent both a good dream and a bad one. During the daytime, have spells achieve maximum effect, travel times nonexistent, and most importantly, all the drinks be CHEAP! At night, the darkness is impenetrable, the woods go on forever, and damage be cut in half. Worse yet, things that players expect, for instance a vorpal sword causing instant death, be mitigated somehow. Opponents can heal damage that would otherwise be grievous in the Prime Plane.
2. Its going to be about subtlety, especially to get the initial shock of being in a dream. When they first enter the Dream Plane, make like nothing happened. Your heroes wake up in the same tavern or base camp or house they slept in. Its just like any other day. Play as if nothing happened. Let them adventure like usual. But then you let them keep going. Give them lots to do in a day. Battle after battle after battle. Its when they start wondering just how long they've been at it is when you begin the downward spiral. Like we said before: time passes, things change.
3. Ultimately, the dream itself is the enemy. Just how does one escape something like a dream? The players can't know that being killed in a dream wakes you up, because they've never seen the movie! Indeed, that would be textbook meta-gaming. Instead, give them cues to understand the urgency of getting out of the dream world. Bodily needs like food and water become a factor, as the food and drink in the dream world doesn't sustain them; its just a dream, after all. If you want to be a real jerk of a dungeon master/referee/storyteller/game master, if and when they escape the Dream Plane, give them only a little experience for doing so. Everything they just did was in a dream and has no bearing on their physical advancement. But only if you want to be a big jerk and have your players hate you forever.