This campaign is set in a fictional Deadwood, South Dakota.
No negative inference to the real Deadwood should be taken!
Having visited the real place, I fell in love with it!

    The Children of Deadwood Campaign is a RPG (i.e., role-playing game) ran using White Wolf's World of Darkness® Rulebook. This campaign was inspired by Dan Simmons' novel, Summer of Night, Stephen King's novel, IT, Dean Koontz's novel, Twilight Eyes, and years of playing RPGs. I hope you enjoy the results.



©2004 Johnny Sundby Photography

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    Settled by a wave of eager immigrants and hard-working miners in the 1870s, Deadwood, South Dakota, remains a Wild West town of mythic proportions – attracting two million annual visitors lured to the lore of the American frontier and the scenic beauty of the surrounding mountains.
    The city of Deadwood, seat of Lawrence County in the highest reaches of Western South Dakota’s fabled Black Hills, was founded following the discovery of gold in 1876. The city was named for the dead trees that were found in the narrow canyon (Deadwood Gulch) where you'll find the historic Main and Sherman streets, with many streets built up its steep sides.
    This is the town that witnessed Wild Bill Hickok gunned down while playing poker with his back to the door. These are the same streets that felt the footprints of Calamity Jane Canary, a one-woman cyclone who claimed she could out-drink, out-swear and out-spit any man – and usually did! Wild Bill and Calamity Jane are buried side-by-side in Deadwood’s Mt. Moriah Cemetery, among other captivating characters of the Wild West.
    Deadwood had the first telephone exchange in the state of South Dakota. Established by Paul Rewman in March of 1878, calls between Deadwood and Lead were 50 cents at the time, 25 cents cheaper than a stage ride between the cities, and much faster. The completion of the line was promptly celebrated as reported by the Pioneer with a large bonfire, gathering, and a grand ball at the Grand Central Hotel.
    Industries include gold mining and lumbering; tourism is also important to the economy. Of interest are an old gold mine where you can try "panning for gold", several historical museums, a cemetery containing the graves of Wild Bill Hickok (who was killed here) and Calamity Jane, and many historic hotels and saloons. Reached by railroad in 1891, the city developed as a trading center for the northern Black Hills region.
    In the late 1980s, visitors to the town of Deadwood discovered boarded-up storefronts, crumbling facades and a community with a once proud past that was slowly suffering from the ravages of time. That was before an unlikely benefactor – limited stakes gaming – gave Deadwood a new lease on life and fueled the transformation of an entire town.
    More than a decade and $150 million later, Deadwood ranks as the largest restoration and preservation project ever undertaken in the U.S. This is the community of 1,300 residents that decided to save itself. Today, Victorian facades, brick streets, period lighting and colorful trolleys greet visitors to this, one of the few communities in America listed as a National Historic Landmark.
    Thick forests blanket the hillsides surrounding Deadwood. These secluded woods provide a majestic and peaceful venue for hiking, bicycling, fishing, or just plain exploring.


    (1980) 2035; (1990) 1830; (2000) 1380.

©2004 Johnny Sundby Photography


    Visit Deadwood in springtime, and you'll enjoy moderate daytime temperatures. The conditions are perfect for a stroll down our historic streets or a refreshing hike in the hills.
    Summer comes early to Deadwood. The days start heating up in May, and they stay warm well into early fall. At an elevation of 4,533 feet, Deadwood's July temperatures rarely dip below 60 degrees. Even when you venture a little higher into the Hills, near Terry Peak or Deer Mountain, you'll enjoy these same ideal summer conditions.
    You can literally witness the seasons change as you drive near Deadwood Gulch. Ash and birch trees begin to show their fall colors amid a sea of green ponderosa pines, and the sun casts slightly longer shadows.
    The Black Hills shelter Deadwood from winter's harsh chill. Because of the unusually warm winter days, some even call this area the Banana Belt. Deadwood's average January temperature hovers near 25 degrees. Still, winter is a welcome visitor in the Black Hills. Over 350 miles of groomed snowmobile trails – rated as among the best in the country – circle the valleys surrounding Deadwood. Plus, you'll find challenging downhill runs and cross-country ski trails at nearby Deer Mountain and Terry Peak.

©2004 Johnny Sundby Photography

A Few Noteworthy Sites

  • Big Dipper Ice Cream: Serves fine coffees, lattes, cappuccino, espresso, and ice cream.
  • Casinos: Over 80 establishments, ranging from nickel slots to $100 bet limits.
  • Deadwood Bicycles Provides quality bicycle rentals, repairs and sales. Offers cycling accessories, climbing gear and sports apparel.
  • Deadwood Books, Comics & Games: Offers books (new and used), comics, and games.
  • Deadwood Middle School: Grades 5 through 8.

  • ©2004 by W. Kent Taylor. All rights reserved.

  • Deadwood Recreation Center: Features a heated indoor pool, indoor and outdoor basketball courts, weight room and tennis court.
  • George S. Mickelson Trail: A beautiful 110-mile recreation trail that follows the historic Burlington Railroad line from Deadwood to Edgemont, South Dakota.
  • Gulches of Fun Resort: The area's largest fun park and arcade featuring mini-golf, bumper boats, go-carts, and rides for the little tots.
  • KSQY 95.1 Radio: Deadwood's World Class Rock Radio, playing great rock 'n roll from the classics of the 60's, 70's, and 80's like Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Eagles, Eric Clapton, Police, Tom Petty, John Mellencamp, and U2 to the newer music from the 90's and today like Dave Matthews, John Mayer, Coldplay, Jack Johnson, and Norah Jones – plus weather reports, every 30 minutes!
  • Mad Hatter Music: An independent music store selling hard-to-find and import CDs from independent labels. Specializes in jazz, rock, folk, blues, and international.
  • Mount Moriah Cemetery: A historic cemetery featuring the final resting places of such notables as James Butler "Wild Bill" Hickok and Calamity Jane.

  • ©2004 by W. Kent Taylor. All rights reserved.

  • Northern Hills General Hospital: An acute Care Hospital, including 24-hour emergency room services.
  • Pizza Heaven: A restaurant featuring piping hot pizza, breadsticks and sandwiches.
  • Whitewood Creek Outfitters: In addition to offering camping accessories, climbing gear, hiking gear, and field & stream apparel, they offer guided fly fishing tours throughout the entire beautiful Black Hills.

Character Creation

    Characters must be 13 to 18 years of age. Players will use the World of Darkness® Rulebook to generate characters.
    Players must complete the following questionnaire.
    Please keep in mind that this is not a Hack 'n' Slash campaign! Your characters are children in a 21st Century small town; anything outlandish or brutal will be noticed very quickly in most cases, and will usually result in the authorities getting involved. If you do not know the meaning of subtlety and discretion, you will learn quickly!
    As youthful adventurers, you'll have a number of disadvantages as compared to "older" adventurers, most of which suggest themselves immediately: being tied to your parents/guardians, not having transportation, not being eligible for licenses (of many types), nobody takes kids seriously, et cetera, et cetera. There are advantages, too. One of these is simply this: your parents/guardians are paying for everything! Well, maybe not everything, but the basics are covered: food, clothing, shelter, education, et cetera. Below is a list of Standard Starting Goods (i.e., a list of items that you may assume your character has access to, and for the most part belongs to him). Any unusual or specialized gear needs to be referred to the GM. In addition, you are assumed to be receiving the equivalent of $50/month in allowance (this does not include exceptional gifts, birthdays, Christmas, odd jobs, lawn mowing, leaf raking, or assorted whatnot).

Standard Starting Goods

  • Bedroom Furniture.
  • A stereo system of average quality.
  • Ten sets of clothing for each season with three each of swimwear, jackets, and pairs of shoes/boots.
  • Three sets of dress clothing for each season with one pair of dress shoes.
  • Two sets of clothing you wouldn't care to be seen in public wearing, but can be worn for housework, and includes one pair of ratty tennis shoes.
  • One of the following: a personal computer of average quality and performance, a TV/Entertainment set with a video game system of choice, or a private phone line.
  • Twenty-five CD's of choice.
  • A backpack (frame or simple).
  • Standard basics (personal hygiene stuff, pens/pencils/notebooks, et cetera).
  • Two weapons of a type or style suited to the character's skills (to be discussed individually).
  • One set of sports equipment (if applicable).
  • Two forms of transportation: bicycle, skateboard, roller-skates, roller-blades, et cetera (be sure your character has an appropriate skill).
  • Up to 3 hobby/craft sets/collections as appropriate to the character, as deemed reasonable by the GM.
  • Up to 25 books (if appropriate), the type and nature determined by the character's personality.
  • A canteen, pocketknife, wristwatch, calculator, and sunglasses.
  • In addition, other items/possessions may be added as appropriate to character, and according to GM's discretion (for example: an art buff would surely have easel, some canvases, oil or acrylic paints, brushes, probably some pastels & charcoals, turpentine, et cetera).

PCs & NPCs

(Click for Photo)
Sex Age Description
Nemo Black (PC) M 16 A tall, black-haired boy with blue eyes. He is somewhat of a loner, but to what few friends he has, he is fiercely loyal! His best friend is Alan Phillips.
Lisa Cacciatore F Late-20s A small, dark-haired, attractive, cheerful woman who owns Deadwood Books, Comics & Games on Sherman Street. She's published several young adult fantasy books. She allows browsers to read in the shop, always greets customers, and is especially welcoming to children. She is the wife of Paul Cacciatore and the mother of Nick Cacciatore. She is a devout Catholic, going to St. Ambrose's Catholic Church at 732 Main Street in Deadwood.
Nick Cacciatore M 13 A slim, brown-haired boy with hazel eyes. He is a fan of science-fiction/fantasy and a comic book collector … in that that his mom owns a store that sells these items, he frequently gets his allowance in "product." He is in the 7th Grade at Deadwood Middle School. He is a devout Catholic, going to St. Ambrose's Catholic Church at 732 Main Street in Deadwood. He also is a choir boy, assisting with morning Mass each day. His best friend is Jedda Rhinehold.
Paul Cacciatore M Late-20s A tall, dark-haired, handsome man with warm eyes. He has a gentle, but expressive voice. He is the most popular teacher at Deadwood Middle School, teaching English and coaching the Girl's Junior Varsity basketball team. He is a published author, under the pen name, Duane Stewart. He is the husband of Lisa Cacciatore and father of Nick Cacciatore. He is a devout Catholic, going to St. Ambrose's Catholic Church at 732 Main Street in Deadwood.
Harlan Kolchak
M Mid-30s The Midnight to 6 AM Radio Personality on KSQY 95.1 Radio. He is frequently talking about extra-terrestrial or supernatural influences in the world, in general, and Deadwood, in particular. Unknown to most, he owns the station!
Josie Maxwell F 14 A slim, blond-haired girl with blue eyes. She sings in the St. Ambrose's Catholic Church choir and Deadwood Middle School choir and Pep Club … she is quite good! She is in the 8th Grade at the Deadwood Middle School. Her best friend is Marissa Phillips, frequently being mistaken as her sister.
Alan Phillips M 17 A tall, slim, blond-haired boy with green eyes who plays drums in a garage band called Lapti Nek. He is in the 11th Grade at Deadwood High School. His father, Samuel Adams Phillips (Age 34), works as a security guard for Magadon, Incorporated in Lead, SD. His mother, LeAnn Feist Rhinehold Phillips, died on April 11, 2002 at age 32 in a car accident, prompting his family's move to Deadwood. He delivers newspapers in the mornings. He is brother to Marissa Phillips and first cousin to Jedda Rhinehold. His best friend is Nemo Black.
Marissa Phillips (PC) F 14 A tall, slim, blond-haired girl with blue eyes who is an avid reader, likes climbing, exploration hiking, and is an amateur archaeologist. She is in the 8th Grade at Deadwood Middle School. Her father, Samuel Adams Phillips (Age 34), works as a security guard for Magadon, Incorporated in Lead, SD. Her mother, LeAnn Feist Rhinehold Phillips, died on April 11, 2002 at age 32 in a car accident, prompting her family's move to Deadwood. She is first cousin to Jedda Rhinehold and sister to Alan Phillips. Her best friend is Josie Maxwell, frequently being mistaken as her sister.
Jedda Rhinehold (PC) F 13 A very tall, slim, dark-haired girl with brown eyes, she is an avid reader of mystery and detective stories. She is in the 7th Grade at Deadwood Middle School, and on the Girls' Junior Varsity basketball team! Her father, Raymond Stroud Rhinehold (Age 39), frequently travels in his job as a Regional Sales Manager for Magadon, Incorporated in Lead, SD. Her mother, Mona Crenshaw Roberts Rhinehold (Age 36), works in the Adams Museum in Deadwood. She is cousin to Alan Phillips and Marissa Phillips. Her best friend is Nick Cacciatore.

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This site last updated on 09/16/09.

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