So I’m starting up a new D&D 3.5e campaign and have been trying to determine which campaign setting I’d rather run. The choices have basically boiled down to:
- Forgotten Realms, with a focus on the city of Waterdeep
- Kingdoms of Kalamar, with a focus on the city of Genavue
- Eberron, with a focus on Sharn, the City of Towers
Funny coincidence: Waterdeep and Geanavue were both created by the same man, Ed Greenwood, who is in my mind a towering genius of fantasy world design.
You may notice that all of the options I’m looking at are based in or around cities. I’ve found I tend to like urban campaigns a great deal, primarily for the wealth of options they offer the player. When any good you want or any service you require is readily available it means you can spend more time figuring out how to do what you want to do, rather than whether or not it’s feasible or possible. But, all three cities are positioned in areas designed to offer easy access to a wealth of other areas — subterranean, jungle, forest, water, etc. There’s also absolutely no reason other than convenience and roots to keep the players in any given place. If they find they dislike the city and want to go somewhere, then far be it from me to stop them. My job as the DM isn’t to restrict their choices so much as encourage them to make the right ones.
Let’s look at some of the pros and cons of each setting.