I wanted to come here to gush a little bit about a weekly 4e D&D campaign that I run that's coming to an end in a couple months. I've been playing tabletop roleplaying games for ten years now, and it's the very first game I've had run so smoothly from start to finish. I hope I'm not jinxing it by saying so... <_<
The game is set in ancient Greece, and is inspired by Greek mythology. Our party started at 1st level last year, and will be 21st level in a couple weeks. I'll admit part of this is because I've accelerated their level advancement to try and keep the campaign to a year in length, but I have REASONS, which I will explain.
For most of my players, it was their very first D&D campaign, and it WAS the most regular game most of them had ever played. I went pretty "easy" on them the whole campaign because I wanted to give them plenty of opportunities to make mistakes and learn without rolling up new characters. That can be a real drag.
Don't take this to mean I haven't killed anybody ... you better believe I've been killing characters pretty much the whole campaign. I've just made sure they had plenty of opportunities to "turn back," and that when their life was going to be on the line - they knew it ahead of time. And they almost always had the resources to bring a character back from the dead... but it wasn't always the most "convenient."
What I hope to do when the campaign ends in a couple months, is give them all the opportunity to leave a "legacy" for their next characters to discover. They've all learned a lot about the game, so hopefully will be able to create evermore complex characters so we can spin more and greater convoluted plots. >