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As might have been seen in the opening of my earlier post on bonus languages, we sometimes run long campaigns. One of our campaigns has been running for at least 14 years—and is still going—another ran for about 7 years and followed up on a campaign that ran for 5 years.

We can say, without exageration, that we have some understanding of the benefits of long campaigns. However… 14 years is a long time and we play every week. We have been going for at least 700 game sessions. And the same thing every time gets boring after a while, regardless of how much fun everyone is having.

So, while we don’t want to stop the campaign, we do want to do something else every once in a while. One of the things we do when that happens is to run a short intermezzo campaign. We take a few sessions to try something new, or just to have something else to play. Most of our intermezzo campaigns run for 2-4 sessions, and aren’t all that serious.

The intermezzo campaigns are a great way to get a short break from the main campaign while at the same time still having get-together focused on roleplay.

Of course, being short, the intermezzos have all the benefits of short campaigns: the intermezzos are a great opportunity for everyone to experiment and for players to take up a different roles from the one they have in the main campaign. This allows everyone to play vastly different personalities or explore different variations on themes they like but which might not fit in the main campaign

However, there is a second sense to ‘a different role’ though: players can try their hand at running a game. Because an intermezzo is short, and because everyone knows that we will go back to the main campaign, there is less pressure on the substitute game master.

With the relaxed atmosphere surrounding the intermezzo, any player that wants to try their hand and running a few game sessions can go for it. Not only is it a good way to get some experience running the game, it’s also a nice way for platers to experiment with their own setting ideas and concepts. To discover what the other players think about it, or just to cut loose and run an ad-hoc for the experience of making it up on the fly!

So next time you are in a long-running campaign and you want to do something else for a change, try to do an intermezzo campaign—by keeping the long-running campaign going, but taking a short break to try new things you get to have you cake and it too.

As always, we have this week’s Changelog ready for you, even though it is rather short. If you have any questions, suggestions, or just want to talk about RPGpad or roleplay-related topics, feel free to open up a thread on the Community forum!