Recently I stumbled upon a retweet of Sly Flourish's proposal/outline for a Level 1-20 D&D 5e Gnoll Campaign. Considering Gnolls are one of my favorite creature types in the Monster Manual - no idea why, just like them - and that not using Gnolls when the PCs in my first 5e game were low enough level for them to be a real threat is one of my big regrets of the game, I clicked the link. What I found was an absolutely amazing layout for an entire campaign going from level 1 to 20 for a game built around Gnolls. One I want to run. One I may run should I get the chance to.
However, inside the breakdown I also found a very cool way to do the setup for a campaign or any particular story. Everything from the elevator pitch to the level 1 to 20 breakdown of what should be happening was great. What I absolutely fell in love with though was the Six Truths.
For those that don't want to follow the link, the Six Truths are six true things about the campaign that mark it as different from other game worlds. They are also public knowledge, meaning that the players should be aware of all six truths going into the game. This means they pull double duty. First, they tell you how this game world is different from others. This is Forgotten Realm's Faerun, except these six things are currently breaking the established status quo. Second, they tell the PCs what is going on in the world that they should keep in mind when building their characters.
Right off the bat these Six Truths give us a sense of feel for what is going on, problems that are occurring, and other events. They can be used to instill a sense of awe, dread, or whatever you want. And, best of all, they can be referred to whenever you are working on the game so you know what you laid down as ground work when the game began.
Moving forward, the Six Truths also provide the ground work for everything that follows. The Six Truths gives the first hints of what shows up in Sly's "three fronts" for major opposition groups. It also hints towards some of the arcane phenomena going on that should give some people pause.
Playing with the concept, you can almost take six random facts from a list and have a campaign ready to be planned. In fact, looking at my currently running games I can feel the lack of these six truths as an anchoring point. Maybe it's time I made some?
It is definitely an interesting tool. One intriguing enough I may need to procure both of Sly's books about being a Lazy DM - because I can be so so lazy.