Teaching & learning lessons #DnD #RPG


(A letter written by Ranger Corps Commander Zethoriel to Count Vilpiano in the year 1255)


Just keeping you apprised of the latest developments on our Western Frontier. Recently a group of young people were on a journey to the Rosada Elve’s Summer caravanserai when they were accosted by a Lagarto ambush. This was apparently a sizable force: ten Lagarto, accompanied by two Gigante Lagarto. They seemed to only be after gold, but also refused to allow the group to proceed along the Oeste Calle to their destination.

The group did return to Rosaroca, and after some coaxing they were asked to return to the region to scout for more Lagarto. This scouting trip brought two pieces of information. Apparently some the Lagarto and one of the Gigante Lagarto left the area, leaving only a small group behind. And in this case the scouts were able to defeat the Gigante Lagarto but not all of the Lagarto. So there is some element of the Lagarto in the area, but it is not clear how large a group. 

For now I will step up Ranger patrols along the road, and ask for the Rosada Elves to do so as well in their area. I do not think this is a large scale invasion or migration of the Lagarto. Rather it is more of a small raiding party, that will not bother larger caravans. And can hopefully be dissuaded by more aggressive patrols. Let me know if you would like me to adopt a different approach than this for the area.

I remain your humble servant,

Zethoriel, Ranger Commander

The boys tried to tax my thinking and creativity some this week. But I think I still taught them my main lesson. That is that it is okay to turn and run at times, when presented with a no win situation. But I had to do a little deus ex machina to accomplish that. Now I have to make sure to go over that lesson when we start playing the next time.

I did try a few different things as well. I continued to just use terrain and figures rather than exact grids for combats. I think the boys got the gist of it for the most part. I just like the idea that the figures and terrain are more symbolic than an exact representation of what is happening. Because it causes them to think differently than having a grid in front of them.

There was some inspired role playing decisions this week. As two of the players really got into their characters and making their choices based on those points, rather than just going along. Combat went a little better, but I will have to continue to work on that, specifically reigning in those who want their characters to do everything and be the center of the game, versus those who should be doing things but fade in the background far too easily.

One thing I was very happy with was the challenge rating of the game. They got scared a few times, there was real worry about their characters. But nothing that was on the verge of an accidental TPK. Which is a worry when working with custom monsters and threats.  So I can pat myself on the back for that at least.

In the end the boys and I were happy with the session, and I can look forward to the next one. And really can you ask for more than that with a role playing game?


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