Progressing slowly #DnD #StormKing’sThunder

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Finally getting around to posting an update. What with the new job, lack of Internet access at said job, I have not had the time to do much writing. But I have been running the game for the boys. So here is where we are. The boys are almost out of the first portion of the adventure.

This has been a fun mix. The boys are having fun. I am enjoying running the pre-made adventure. I have to say it takes a little more work than I thought. There is a decent amount of work. The adventure itself is really good. With a decent variety of challenges.

Our last session saw the first casualty. The Bard died a horrid death at the pods of a lurking Black Pudding. Hopefully, the boys did learn a lesson about splitting the party.

We are doing our best to run every other week. Playing again this weekend. Which gives me something to look forward to.

On a side note, I finally received my last Xmas present: Volo’s Guide to Monsters. Which I have to say is one of the coolest books I have seen in quite a while. It is a very impressive addition to the 5E library. I am really excited to use some of the creatures in the book.

If all goes well I may even rejoin the Deadlands game that has been dormant so long on Monday night. In other words, my role playing life is still alive and well. I just haven’t been able to write about it. So do not fear the adventures continue!

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A few random thoughts on gaming #Bloodbowl #DND #RPG

I am so looking forward to the end of the Holiday season and a resumption of a regular gaming schedule. I have some plans. I also have some things I am tinkering with. Bottom line is it is all cool.

Bloodbowl

I received my new Skaven team for Xmas. I have already gone out and done the primer and base coat on them while on the sprue. I have a plan for them. The Desert Rats. I will give them all Arabic names (maybe from the Arabian Nights.) I plan to paint them in all desert colors.

I know that the Skaven are not necessarily the strongest team. They lack the power of other teams. But I have played brute teams and it is not the way I want to play. I will be resigned to some early beatings while I try to accumulate experience. I think that is the smart way to play them. Even borrow a little from the Run’n’Gun offenses and worry less about stopping other teams and more about scoring as much as I can. Who knows how it will turn out but it should be fun.

D&D

The boys game resumes this coming weekend. I am looking forward to taking them to the next step in the challenge. I think that the next chapter in Storm King’s Thunder will provide them with a good mix of action and role playing.

My Denver game finally resumed a couple of weeks ago. Viper acquitted himself well. Sniping and was able to unleash the big play that made it possible to take down the enemy spell caster. We also leveled up so Viper will be able to do even more in that role of locating and taking down the spell casters. I am looking forward to our next session.

Role Playing

My brother was in town for the holidays. We were talking about a few different things role playing among them. He is talking about possibly moving to my state. Which I am really looking forward to the possibility of his joining my various role playing ventures.

We were also talking about some RPG related things like podcasts and videos. Enough that if things work out I might put together a game specifically for him. It would be a way of creating a structure for a story podcast. It would be a pulp type adventure with some twists. I have already begun thinking a little about how I would craft this campaign: what rules set and how to capture the pulp feel.

As you can see I am still thinking about gaming even during the Holiday hiatus. There are so many things gaming related in my life. I keep them going and enjoy them as much as I can.

Having the right plan and numbers #DnD #RPG

One of the eternal questions in role playing is determining the proper size of a group. How many players can you have in a group? How many is too many, and conversely how many is too few? There are a couple of things to consider when coming up with an answer.

How many can the GM handle comfortably? That is the biggest issue to answer. This depends on the players of course. I have seen large groups that work because everyone is really into the game and focused. I have also seen small groups where players still had a hard time getting into the game. So it really comes down to the GM. What are they comfortable with? I personally am okay with the 4 to 5 player range. More than that and I begin to fret about getting everyone involved. Fewer than that and I have trouble gauging the combats. How dangerous should I make the combat?

What kind of game are you running? Is it a combat heavy, hack and slash, dungeon crawl kind of game? In that kind of game, the more players involved does not necessarily create problems so long as you manage the combat rounds efficiently. On the other hand, if you are emphasizing investigation and storytelling, a large group can really slow things down. It is much easier to run that type of game when you only have a few players.

How reliable is your group? Say you only have 2 to 4 players, and one gets sick, the game almost has to be put off. So the less reliable the group the more players you want. So if one person cannot make it there are still enough players to play.

All of these things also affect how you plan and run your game. With a small group, you almost have to design your game around the possibility that it could be interrupted. Or have a few options for side games when one person is gone. If it is a larger group the loss of one player is not as noticeable. Another point to consider in this is if you can play without a certain character. When you design the campaign and a set of encounters, can the group handle or even proceed without one character?

I personally try to plan my games so that they can handle the loss of one player. With the caveat being that if Jimmy is not well I will not run the game as I run the game for him. If necessary I will take control of the missing character. But I tend to run more encounter heavy games than narrative ones, so it is easier to absorb that loss.

Like I said, it is not an easy answer. There are a lot of things to think of when determining how may people to invite to your game. Just another thought to ponder on.

This town is clear! #Dnd #RPG #StormKingsThunder

Fortune and fate found a disparate group traveling on the High Road. By chance, they shared a common destination, the hunting post named Nightstone. Onward they went. A young Dragonborn, Donaar, the hope of his small village, outfitted with all the equipment a poor town could afford. The sage Squavite, abroad for the first time in search of new knowledge. The hardened Yisaan, an elf raised in mercenary camps with a rough view of the world. And the mysterious Netero, with his blue skin and hair, and quiet ways.

When they reached the town of Nightstone young Donaar and Squavite voiced their concerns that it should be so quiet and the drawbridge down and open to all. Yisaan and Netero, anxious to accomplish what they were here for chose not to acknowledge the others fears and walked into the village.

Only to discover a pair of large Worgs feasting on the scraps of a carcass in the square. The creatures charged. Yisaan ran for high ground, while Netero tried to stand his ground. A vicious bite from a Worg took Netero down. Donaar stepped up and valiantly fought the other to a stand still. While Squavite used his arcane powers to vanquish the last creature.

While Donaar tried to tend to Netero, Yisaan and Squavite began to explore the nearest building, a temple to Mielikki. In their exploration they came upon 2 goblins enjoying their time in the temple, looting all that was of value, and now making a racket with the church bell. Donaar was able to spy another pair of goblins making their way across the square, and shot one down with his crossbow.

Yisaan and Squavite were able to dispatch the 2 goblins in the temple, ending the racket of the church bell. Donaar moved Netero to the safety of the temple while the other goblin ran. And then retrieved the one he had wounded and brought him to the temple as well.

While exploring the temple and searching the goblins Yisaan and Squavite found numerous treasures that the goblins had looted. Yisaan, thinking that it was his by rights, pocketed one of the items. An argument ensued while the party caught their breath in the comparative safety of the temple building. However, the argument was cut short by the smell of smoke.

The goblins had surrounded the building and were hoping to smoke out the party with fire arrows. Yisaan, realizing that the only normal way out was guarded, chose to make his own exit by leaping through one of the church windows. Squavite attempted to follow, reaching the window ledge, only to knocked out when Donaar threw the captive goblin out the same window. Donaar eventually came out the same window.

With the rest of the party out of the Temple, Netero bided his time and waited for an opportunity to rush out and charge the goblins. Donaar provided that chance when he charged into the pack of goblins. Netero rushed from the church and took the goblins from behind. Not in time to prevent Donaar from being knocked to the ground, but before the goblins were able to rush the rest of the party.

With the felling of the last goblin, the party took stock. They had captured four of the horrid little creatures while killing ten others, as well as 2 Worgs. As they bandaged Donaar, a young woman came out of the building that was likely the town Inn. Giving her name of Kella, a recent arrival to the town. She described an attack by Cloud Giants, who took the fabled obsidian megalith that had given the town its name. She also said that she was expecting friends to arrive that day.

Continue reading “This town is clear! #Dnd #RPG #StormKingsThunder”

Prepping begins #DnD #RPG

I am finally getting back to my D&D game. I almost have to plan a break every year for the month of October due to all of the family events. So I took a break. I decided to take the opportunity to also re-boot the game.

The composition of the group has changed a lot since I got the Zendikar game started, and from before when I ran my home brew. I have decided that this is a good time to run something that might better fit the group. So I will be starting them from scratch with one of the pre-made adventures.

I have a couple of reasons for this. First, it will save me a little work in game prep. Second, by sticking to a more tried and true setting I should not have to work quite so hard to introduce elements to the game. Third and last, by having what amounts to a complete campaign set out for me I can offer a goal and end game, rather than just running a random monster of the week campaign. Those can be fun but get kind of boring for me.

I now have some prep work set out for me. I plan to run a Session Zero this coming weekend, followed by the first actual session the day after Thanksgiving. I have put together a cheat sheet for that. I will take the opportunity with that to follow my personal character creation flow, which is a little different from the standard one.

I prefer to have the players pick a background first, where did their character come from? Then roll ability scores. Followed by race and character classes. I think that knowing that background helps figure out a little about the character. And it helps get them all together.

I am looking forward to this. Running the game a little differently. Which is good for me and also for the players.

Digging into it. #DnD #RPG

This weekend I began work on running Storm King’s Thunder. I am having a good time really digging into the adventure. Determining what the boys will be able to handle. I really like these new campaigns that WotC has put out. I thought of running Curse of Strahd, but not for this group.

I am planning to make this campaign work. I think that by running this I can avoid my usual pitfall of boredom with preparation. I like writing my adventures. But I admit that at a certain point I begin to lose focus on my storyline. So it changes up, becomes something else.

By running this I have the benefit of a defined end point of the campaign. A goal for the party. A long running campaign that the group can stick to. And when it is done we can decide where to go. Who knows, I might dump them all into Zendikar at that point.

The big thing for me is that I have a structure to follow for the foreseeable future with the boys game. Which will help all of us, and it should be fun for me.

It can’t be Thursday already #DnD #CriticalRole

When I was laid off about 2 months ago I had been keeping myself up to date and current on a number of podcasts and web shows. Because my job allowed me to keep things like this going as a background while I did other work. Since then I have not had the same circumstances. My life at home has not been one where I did a lot where it made sense to have background shows. Recently, however, I have made a commitment to doing more writing. These shows are actually a fine background for my writing.

That means that I have spent this week catching up on my Critical Role. I was several episodes behind. But I have been able to make real good headway here. I have enjoyed these recent episodes. The death and resurrection of Percy. The masterful huge battle at Glintshore. The humor of the Spice deal. They have all been great, and a joy to watch and listen to.

As I listen to another episode it occurs to me that it is Thursday again. Which means that even if I catch up to the last 2 episodes available, I will have to wait until Monday to truly become current again. I do not try to watch the shows live because I normally do not like to stay up later on weeknights.

I will admit that listening to these has given me inspiration to really get going on my own campaign work. I spent yesterday plotting and researching ideas in Pathfinder. I have lots of thoughts and ideas for my character in that game. And I am looking forward to really digging into the Storm King’s Thunder for my next game with the boys.

It is all coming from this wonderful show. Thanks again to the crew for making this show, and making it so much fun.

Fun character idea #DnD #RPG

I was listening to an interesting D&D podcast the other day. It was going into the Monk class. Talking about the cliches of the class. Different ways to approach the class and concepts. And I was inspired with my own concept.

I envision a Monk who is actually a part of a family of Luchadores. His Monk training is all about combat and performance. He would still have all of the deadly martial artist abilities of the Monk, using the Way of the Empty Hand. And he would have the Entertainer background, giving him ability with Performance.

His approach to combat would be as cinematic and athletic as possible. Never using a simple blow when a more exciting alternative is available. Using all of the extra speed and athletic ability of a monk to enhance his attacks.

He would be making a living as a traveling entertainer. He would be willing to go fight monsters and such provided there was a reward, and preferably some kind of audience.

Ideally, he would have at least one companion who was a bard. Who would sing the songs and tales of his exploits. And would act as a manager for his bouts. I could even picture an entire troupe. A bard or 2, a couple of monks, maybe a rogue to steal from the crowd, and maybe a Cleric to act as the healer.

It would take the right kind of group, and some teamwork to do all of this. And a group of players willing to ham it up. It would be a lot of fun.

Planning and executing makes it fun #DnD #RPG

My Pathfinder game this weekend went very well. I wasn’t super effective, but overall I had fun. My character is still trying to regain his power after having all of his stuff stolen. I have found that one of the other players likes to plan and scheme about the game almost as much as I do.

We were both up late Saturday night before the game exchanging e-mails about our plans and ideas. And since the game ended we have been burning up the interwebs with our ideas and plans. It is a lot of fun.

I think that is one of the thigs that makes the games fresh and interesting. Sure, most of our plans end up changing. Because no plan survives contact with the enemy. But it is still fun to make plans.

It is especially fun to figure out ways to make my character effective. Because this game is very high powered. And the GM is a master at coming up with ever more challenging and deadly encounters. I have to be on my toes and do my best to think ahead.

Now I do not want to become too powerful again and have all of my stuff taken away again. That was no fun at all. I have to ride a thin line.

I do not get quite as much out of running a game for the boys because they are easy to outthink and trap. I do wonder if it would be different running a game for adults. Eventually, I might get a chance to find that out. For now, I will reserve this part of my joy for the Pathfinder game.

The hunt begins #RPG #DnD

The Heroes of Clermont returned to their home. With the party intact and restored to health. They began to spend time working on those projects that they were diverted from. Thorvald continued work on his mighty keep, Nordheim. Elly and Qwaliki entertained themselves and worked on their respective fashion lines. Mickey wandered about because that is what he does. Viper returned to his alchemical studies and potion work. This is what they were working on when a messenger arrived from the Count.

The services of the party were needed. The Chateau Les Eaux had been attacked and the prospective Princess Violet had been kidnapped. The party quickly boarded their new flying boat and traveled to the site of the attack. Viper was able to determine that the attack was the work of 5 frost giants, accompanied by winter wolves and a giant bear.

Unwilling to let such an affront stand, and worried about the plight of the Princess, the party set off immediately in pursuit of the evil giants. Viper tracked them through the night until they finally caught up to the terrible creatures. Qwaliki unleashed some fireballs from afar at the party of creatures. Ellly got off the boat and summoned her trusty steed, and with the aid of some spellwork of Mickey, was able to follow the giants on foot. While Viper guided the boat through the air in pursuit as well.

This pursuit ended when a harpoon flew up from the forest trees into the side of the boat. They had found the giants.

The battle that ensued was hard pressed. With Mickey needing to be revived from near death once. While Elly herself also had to survive many severe injuries. In the end, the giants were all killed, along with the bear and 5 wolves. The young ladies were rescued from the clutches of evil, and a large treasure was retrieved.

There was another creature out in the forest, attempting to hinder the party. But they were unable to find it. So they know that there are more fell creatures out in the mountains. It is clear that something has roused the giants in the area. It will likely not rest until it is destroyed or the party is dead.