Tuesday, July 18, 2017

This is getting to be a regular thing

We had our seventh session in my first Roll20 campaign. It's hard to believe that we have actually played that many sessions. Despite playing twice a month at best, it feels like the game is just flying along.

Part of that is because the DM, Bart, has had decades of experience running games so he's able to streamline things. For instance, I've noticed that he follows the Order of the Stick's rule for random encounters. You only have one per journey because it gets repetitive otherwise :D Not that Bart's encounters are actually random. 

He also frames the game like a movie, going from important scene to important scene and skipping the transitions in between. While I love the Fellowship of the Ring, I think that Tolkien's detailed, step-by-step description of leaving the Shire has done a world of damage to DMs.

We determined the best person to consult for a cure for our druid's lycanthropy was a dwarven wizard in a city under the mountains south of our jarl's land. We fought a giant spider and some centipedes on the way there.

While our time in the dwarven city included overhearing a heist getting planned and getting set on a fetch quest by the wizard, the real highlight was Shad really getting into character. And by character, I mean being hysterically obnoxious to all the NPCs by acting clueless about all social norms. In his own society.

To cure Ilva's lycanthropy, we would need the jawbone of a horse killed in battle, the corpse of a giant rat and a hundred gold. The wizard was a little vague about the gold being a component or a fee.

On our way to a battlefield to find that jawbone, we were ambushed by four corrupted human thugs and a rabid blink dog. I honestly think that Bart underestimated how deadly the fight would be. Our bard wasn't there that night and the thugs had two attacks and pack tactics that gave them bonuses to hit. It came surprisingly close to a total part kill.

For me, I had gone over some of my specific powers as a fighter, the nuances of playing fifth edition. In particular, I realized I had misunderstood the Protect fighting style. So, I went into this session prepared to handle the fights like they were board games.
In this fight, I used every trick I could pull, including heavy use of terrain to hold our right flank. I eventually got dropped to zero (so did the Druid) but by then, it was enough to for the two standing party members to win the fight and save us.

So, for me at least, the sessions was less about developing some game skills as opposed to Roll20 skills. On the other hand, we (particularly Bart) are getting used to Roll20 enough that we can have a smooth fight without thinking about it.

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