Guess I'm glad we decided to ignore official adventures then. XD When I was first introduced to D&D. ((4e mind you)) I believe the DM was focusing on essentials characters, and the red box. This was her first time DMing, so I can't tell what was from the story, or what was from her, but all I know is. There was something she put me through to teach me the game and to throw my character into a lil bit of storyline involving a dwarf merchant losing a box to a bunch of goblin minions.
All I know is. I get done that, scenes were skipped, one sec I'm with the Merchant, next thing I know I'm immediately standing in front of a giant cave, and then when we finally get the group together... Apparently in the mean time my character went to the local tavern and gathered up a dwarf, a halfling, a human and a dragonborn... No explanation of who they were other than their name and class... And All the sudden before I can even roleplay with them, we're attacked by goblins and wolves.
Maybe she skipped all that roleplay just to get to the "Fun part?" Or maybe it wasn't in the story she was following? I don't know, and I don't think I'll ever know unless I pick that up for myself. All I know is, I ended up in a party with a powergamer, an observer, and a DM who didn't do half of her homework, and without any indication on who everyone was.. I was bored. I didn't feel attached to the storyline or the group. I had to refer to a notecard just to remember the other players names because there was NOTHING about them that stood out and said "Hey I'm this person because of such n such a reason."
It wasn't fun for me, but clearly I just had the wrong group of people. But I can't help but wonder how much of that was the campaign itself, and how much of that was just her. If campaigns are set up that you jump immediately from one encounter to the next, then I won't be buying any of them anytime soon.
With my campaign, I knew my players, and I knew their characters. Everything was built around those characters. Creating motivation for them is easy, because I know what the characters like, and I know that the players like. Even to the point where they realize that they can't hack n slash their way through everything and expect to get to their goals easily, although I do throw in an epic battle in there once in a while to get the blood flowing. It's not about "Oh they rp taking damage or doing damage." Even through combat scenes, there is story and character interaction going on. Guess by choosing a different path, we were just able to see the game differently. *shrugs* Or maybe it's because the group is so roleplay heavy considering we're usually freeform para-rpers. I dunno D:
Edit: I'm sorry if this comes off as silly rambling. I was heavily distracted while writing all this.