Campaign pitches

Campaign Pitches

Submitting a campaign pitch

If you would like to pitch a campaign to run in Marvel Overpower, the process to do so is relatively straightforward. To have a campaign pitch considered, a potential DM must do the following (each of these will be covered in greater detail below):

  1. Have read the entirety of the posts in the gameplay section of this blog
  2. Have at least a passing knowledge of the state of the overall continuity
  3. Completely fill out the form at the bottom of this page. This includes the campaign elevator pitch, storytelling breakdown, gameplay mechanics, Commander and Character Pool ideas
  4. Once the pitch has been received, it will be reviewed by the current Marvel Overpower DMs
  5. If the pitch meets all the criteria, you’ll be asked to run a one-shot of the campaign for some of the Marvel Overpower DMs
  6. The collective DMs will either accept or decline a pitch after this session

Campaign Pitch: Reading Up

Reading up

The first steps in submitting a campaign pitch is to understand both the game and the current continuity. This is a living, breathing game built from the collaboration and cooperation of several Dungeon Masters and players. We don’t expect a potential DM to feel entirely comfortable with the continuity, or with the gameplay changes from D&D 5e, but out of respect for the games that have been created before, an understanding is necessary.

For gameplay rules (especially the ones that differ from a standard D&D game, we again recommend reading the gameplay section. We also advise skimming the events section of the blog to hit the highlights of the site continuity. Having an intimate knowledge of these events isn’t critical, and once a pitch is accepted, the other DMs can help carve out an understanding with the continuity that’s important to the incoming campaign. The one thing that we ask is that you have an understanding of what characters are, or have been in play. This will help in the defining of campaign plots and to ensure that characters are used similarly to how they’ve been established in-game.

Crafting a Campaign Pitch

Every campaign pitch requires a few things. An elevator pitch, a storytelling breakdown, a similar breakdown of gameplay mechanics, ideas for the campaign Commander, their Commander Boon, starting types of contacts, a starting resource, and a Hub location. Essentially, all the information displayed in the solicits section. Each pitch will be turned into a solicitation for characters/players following acceptance.

Solicits are used to entice both potential players and DMs, and as such, are an important part of growing the game.

Note that campaigns listed as a “campaign solicit” will be prioritized in the pitch review process. Any campaign listed for solicitation is one that the existing group of DMs and players feel would make a welcome addition to the larger game.

Elevator pitch

The elevator pitch portion of a campaign pitch is a short, one to two sentence (no more than 200 characters) summary of what the campaign plot or driving force is. This is meant to hook or engage players and audience very quickly on why they should engage with the campaign. It shows a great understanding of what makes a campaign unique and interesting on the behalf of the potential DM.

Storytelling breakdown

This section builds upon the elevator pitch and breaks down the key elements of the campaign narrative, and what types of stories can be expected within the campaign. We take a look at the campaign as a whole (100%) and define what the four most common types of narrative elements will be in the campaign. The percentage of each vertical can be as big or small as needed to best encompass the campaign.

For example, Secret Avengers is solicited as mostly action, with almost equally amounts of intrigue. It also has a decent amount of science fiction, and lastly a splash of spy thriller to round out its four main verticals.

Gameplay breakdown

Where the storytelling breakdown identifies the narrative breakdown of a campaign pitch, this section does the same exact thing for gameplay. Gameplay should be considered in how it relates to the types of D&D games it might offer, or the types of encounters it might create. This is different than the campaigns storytelling, but would be highly influenced by it.

As an example, the gameplay in Secret Avengers is overwhelmingly stealth combat encounters and then espionage. Lastly it is about equal parts investigation and exploration.

Between the storytelling and gameplay breakdowns, a pretty concise campaign DNA can be identified.


Campaign Pitch: The Commander

Commander

Each Marvel Overpower campaign requires a starting Commander. This might—and likely will change over time—but it’s important at the start of the campaign, it’s important to understand who the leader of the team, or the campaign figurehead is. It is up the DM whether this Commander can be controlled by a player, or is an NPC. However, it is important that if the Commander is an NPC, that they do not become an integral part of the missions and encounters in the game, but serve more as a passive symbol for the campaign. If needed, of course the DM can step in and interact with the players and campaign as much as normal NPC would, but it’s important to not overstep.

Designing a Commander requires the following things:

A Commander Boon

Something that each hero in a party has access to if certain criteria are met. One of those critera MUST be that the chosen Commander is still the Commander. The other is up to the DM, but can be used to balance out the power creep of the boon. The boon itself should be something that feels individualistic to that Commander, but also useful to the gameplay breakdown and character pool.

Starting Contacts

Each Commander should start with between 2-4 types of communities or individuals that they’re in contact with. For Black Panther, it would make sense for it to be Wakandans, Avengers, and the Tech communities. For Jubilee, it might be citizens of Krakoa, Mutants, or characters who operate on Marvel’s street level. Ultimately, these groups are dependent on who the Commander is.

The importance of these groups is that it colors the types of resources, information, or NPCs a Commander (and the players) have access to at the start of the campaign. It’s far more likely that Doctor Voodoo has access to supernatural investigators like Terror, Inc. while players sending the Dora Milaje out to gather intel is more likely with Black Panther as Commander.

What these 2-4 contact types are, or how’re the classified isn’t terrible important as long as they make sense to the Commander. Feel free to create your own, or use any that are found in other solicits.

As the campaigns progress, Commanders and players will be able to access different types of contacts, and how they would impact the game as plots expose the party and Commander to new corners of the Marvel Universe.

Starting Resource

This is a feature unique to each Commander that is granted as access for the party. What this is, and what it can do is up to the DM, but again, should make sense for the Commander and the campaign. The starting resource should be accessible by the party from the start, and should shape what they’re able to do. In return, they should be able build, or expand upon it. Especially when it comes to spending XP to develop its importance as they do. This should be accessible always from the Hub.

An example of a starting resource would be access to Shuri’s Vibranium Lab for Black Panther and party. This might give players access to unique Vibranium weapons at the start of the campaign. For a campaign with Professor X as the Commander, they might have access to Cerebro, able to track any brain pattern anywhere on the globe. Both extremely distinct in offering, and how they would impact the story.

The Hub

Each Commander (and campaign) has a Hub. This is ultimately just a place for players to interact with each other, NPCs, and the various resources they have access to away from the campaign missions. Functionally, a Hub is constructed the same way whether it’s in Wakanda, or Xavier’s Institute for Gifted Yongsters.

However, as the campaign unfolds, and new areas are added to the Hub, those should feel unique to the Commander, the Hub location, or the actions of the players.

Character Pool

This is just a pool of characters that a potential DM believe fit the storytelling and gameplay breakdowns as well as the elevator pitch and plot ideas. While no campaign is limited to this pool alone, it’s important to cast a wide net to help prospective players understand how you see the game, and the Marvel heroes that make sense it. There is no upper limit on this pool. It can even include heroes from other campaigns, we just ask that potential DMs are aware of their use elsewhere. When we post the solicit for an accepted campaign, any characters in use elsewhere will remain on a solicit, but will have a strikethrough.


Campaign Pitch: Review and Beyond

Review and beyond

Once a campaign pitch has been submitted, it will be reviewed by all of the current Marvel Overpower DMs. it will be reviewed on the folllowing:

  • Strength of the elevator pitch. Is it engaging? Does it bring something unique to the universe?
  • Storytelling and gameplay breakdowns. Are they engaging? Does it bring something unique to the universe? Does it conflict with anything in the universe? Do these breakdowns consider feasibility of gameplay?
  • Commander build. Is the Commander being used elsewhere? How and Why? Does the build meet all the requisites?
  • Hub build. Is the Commander being used elsewhere? How and Why? Does the build meet all the requisites?

After this point, a pitch is either provisionally accepted, declined, or sent back with notes.

One-Shots

If a pitch is provisionally accepted, the DM will be asked to run a one-shot for some of the Marvel Overpower DMs. This can be for a party as big as the DM desires, or as small (it is recommended that the one-shot have at least two players unless it is a solo campaign). The game will be set up as any game would be, and then played.

Unfortunately, this feels a bit like an audition, but ultimately, we need to ensure that you’re capable of DMing a game in a way that will be engaging and most importantly, safe for any players that may join the campaign. This is the most important thing, and likely the only thing that would result in a complete rejection at this stage. If that a safe or poor gaming experience was provided. Otherwise the DM and campaign will likely be accepted as is, or accepted with feedback.

No doubt this can be a nerve-wracking experience, which is not our desire. So, we have created a little bit of a short cut. Players who have participated in Marvel Overpower campaigns are likely to be familiar with the rules, and the expectations around safety and experience. Players who submit campaign pitches can forgo this one-shot and jump straight to finding players and crafting a session zero with those players.

Invitations

If the Marvel Overpower DMs are familiar with a DM, they can offer invitations to join and pitch a campaign.


Campaign Pitch: Submit a Pitch

Submit a Campaign Pitch

This is the title for your campaign pitch (ie, New Warriors)
Please explain the draw and driving action of this campaign
Please include your four breakdowns, and a percentage for each
Please include your four breakdowns, and a percentage for each
This is the character that will serve as the campaign's starting Commander
Please provide 2-4 flavors of contacts for this campaigns Commander

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