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Does anyone know where the 5 room dungeon method came from?

Hola everyone. I'm back from vacation and have just approved a big backlog of great posts that Google roll 1 for Detect Traps on, and were falsely marked as spam.

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Hey all, I am in the process of designing my next campaign and I need some advice/help.
Here is the synopsis:
This will be on an island or a peninsula.
There are 4 cities, 3 are somewhat normally populated but the 4th has been abandoned and overrun by less than savory types.
In this land area magic is scarce and there are special collectors in each of the 4 cities that gather residue magic and stores it. FYI, the game I play (HARP) uses a power point system instead of the typical D&D method of spell memorization.
A threat now looms over the area and the characters know that if magic was returned it could save the day. The characters discover/realize there are these structures in or near each city that affect the flow of magic. They come to the conclusion that the stories they have been told and that have been passed down through the ages are lies and believe some organization is behind this limiting magic thing (this one is for the conspiracy theorists) be it something like the illuminati or what have you.
As they destroy (or whatever they need to do) the structures in each area a little more magic returns, power point regeneration goes up that much closer to normal and that affects each area.
There is a large (humongous in fact) inactive volcano with a fifth and final structure in it the characters will need to visit to have magic completely return to the area.
The truth is; There is a very valid reason magic is so limited. A long long time ago ( a few hundred years, maybe a thousand?) the people of this area banned together to imprison a dragon in it's lair within the inactive volcano. FYI dragons in this game are not like their weak counterparts in games like D&D, they are fiercely intelligent and extremely powerful creatures and are very hard to kill. Think Smaug, but possibly worse. Once they destroy the final structure the beast will be released and it will want revenge.
My questions:
1. Should I start my own Google+ community for this campaign to hopefully get some input and help on this campaign idea?
2. I have never been great at medieval demographics and this is 4 somewhat major cities. How far apart should they be to be realistic and have at least about a weeks (or less) worth of travel between them?
3. how do I get the players to record notes and keep track of things without giving to much away? I as this because they have been terrible at it in my current campaign.
I have loads of intrigue between the cities with some interesting historical events lined up. I have much more I need to write or put down but so far this is all still in my head. I really really need to start using my scrivener (installed, never used) and my Realm Works better than what I have been....lol. 

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Story? Let's call this what it is, an adventure. For a story is what you tell about what has happened, in an RPG you are describing what is happening, and what happens depending on how your players react to what you tell them.

And scope? That is for the players to decide, for they don't have to follow your lead on all occasions. Your villain may die in the first encounter, a minor encounter could lead to greater things. Be adaptable, ready to adjust to what your players do, your players find. Let them inspire you, for the players make better allies than foes.
I have talked about lots of different things about how to run a game, and how to do referee things, but only brushed on the meat of it.  So, lets choose a setting and go through the steps of actually building an adventure to run your players through!  I…

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Just some thoughts on the new guard coming up, we were all there once.

What could be my 8 Pillars of Death if they are 8 evil factions?

1 is Dragon Cultists of Tiamat.
2 is an undead army.
3 is an Orc army
4 ???
5 ???
6 ???
7 ???
8 ???

Needing some help coming up with what will make up this larger evil group.

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I spent about a dozen hours getting to know REALM WORKS and have probably just scratched the surface. It is a rough gem, but a gem none-the-less. It probably shines the brightest when working with huge, detailed settings.

Leave it to the authorities.

I've recently had the experience that players seemed to put off anything they were doing to the authorities. In this instance, they were hired to find a missing, girl, they went to the police and basically told them "do your job". They were dealing with a magical virus and called in the cdc to handle it.
I mean sure, those are valid methods, but it seems to be more of a "Sim City" way of playing rather than anything I would expect in a roleplaying game.

This is not limited to modern day games either. "Call the guards" could just as well be used here.

Have you had something similar happen to you? How did you solve it?

If I may pick the Hive mind's brain again, I have another question as I design my homebrew system. What is everyone's favorite way to deal with health and damage? Do you prefer simple hit points like D&D, wound levels like CWoD, a soak pull, or target number that damage needs to surpass like in Savage Worlds? Any input is welcomed. You guys have been awesome with the help so far so thank in advance. 
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