The Rpgcodex forums are always a source of interesting stuff that I wasn’t even aware existed.
This one is about a mega-campaign called The Realm, that is a collection of about 46 separate modules (but they should be fairly short separately), built across 9 years (started in 1998, finished in 2007) sometime unifying other settings like Ravenloft and Greyhawk and all should be conversions of the classic modules (for example one of these is The Temple of Elemental Evil). The quality of all of these should be good.
This uses the Goldbox engine and an editor called FR: Unlimited Adventures. Essentially you run a module and import your party, then play it. When you’re done, save the party and port it over to the next module. There’s also all the freedom you want since you can go through the modules in any order (as long you check the suggested levels for the party, I guess). The suggested sequence is on that site.
I only managed to install the thing and play about an hour to the first module I found (and I never actually played Goldbox games before), but it was FUN!
Most of the game is text driven (the writing is fine), so it’s a kind of narrated rpg where you have choices here and there. Then there’s the old-school 3D dungeon exploration (that requires map-making), and the tactical combat typical of Goldbox games. I think this mix works really well, and I love the idea of the long term unified campaign.
Example of what I found in the beginner module: It’s called “The Veiled Society” and described as “murder mystery adventure”. It starts in this big city called Specularum, suggested level 1-3. At the beginning guards ask for gold and bind your weapons before they let you go. Then the crowded city is being described and there’s some kind of celebration going on, lots of people in the street and a procession. During this procession there are some guys having a squabble with some priests and you’re asked whether you want to step up for one or the other (or do nothing), though it doesn’t tell you what kind of repercussions this will have. Then you get to explore the city and the various shops, buy some basic equipment. When night falls you get to an inn, pick spells to memorize and go to rest. In the morning you find a woman in distress who’s seen some shadows in her basement. So I accepted to help her, she drives you to her home and you can go exploring her basement (that looks more like a dungeon). After a while I find two guys burying something, fight them, and find out they were burying two corpses, one of which is grasping some red hair (intrigue!). I explore a bit more and find a band of kobolds (who doesn’t have a band of kobolds in the house basement?) who seem to try holding up a crumbling ceiling and call out for MY help. I obviously go to their help (who wouldn’t help a band of kobolds?) but it’s a TRAP! The ceiling falls on my party, I dispatch the kobolds but get three in my party killed too. I finally go back to the woman and she tells you to report the crime asap to the constabulary. So you go there but they don’t believe you, they call some priest to cast a “detect lies” spell and finally they believe the story. Then you are carried to some noble mansion to investigate, but then I returned to the city to see if I could find a temple to resurrect my party. And in the meantime wandering around you start getting lots of rumors about the important families and what’s going on. That’s it for now.
Getting everything to work requires a number of steps, but it’s fairly simple actually. Instructions here: http://www.rpgcodex.net/forums/index.php?threads/forgotten-realms-unlimited-adventures-frua-thread.61909/
And you can even try getting Roland/MT-32 emulation in Dosbox, which works with all games for much better MIDI music: http://www.rpgcodex.net/forums/index.php?threads/best-might-and-magic.42757/page-42#post-2040280
After that you just download the modules (hacked versions, since they modify the engine for new tricks) from here: http://frua.rosedragon.org/modulelist/hacked.php
Then unpack in a directory, move over your character files and not much else.