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Alkaven
November 12th, 2005, 06:10
It has been two years since the war between Vanadict and Triant ended with a negotiated peace treaty. The same two years since King Eliot Caskan was murdered.

With the kingdom of Triant no longer at war, citizens of the nation could rest easy, and adventurers could safely walk the roads again, setting out on their own expeditions and treasure hunts. A land by the name of Mistwell began to flourish with tales and stories of fortunes and mystery. It acts as the gap between the human city of Triant and the elvan city of Rhann, seperated eternally by a magical barrier.

Mistwell Melodies: The Tomgale Talisman is a 3-book series of adventures that are not directly connected, but related in some fashion. This is the second installment in the Shield Forthcoming series.

Automatically qualifying for invitation are the present members of the previous adventure: The Broken Mountains consisting of Aladane and Ingelri.

I need 3-5 players for this adventure who fulfill the appropriate qualifications below. If you are interested, you can contact me at [email protected] You will receive a Newcomer's Guide that will include lore about the world, house rules, and character creation guidelines. It also includes a brief summary of previous adventures.

Adventure Specs

This is a Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 Edition Adventure designed to use the rules listed in the Player's Handbook, Monster Manual, and Dungeon Master's Guide.

The adventure will span approximately 6-10 encounters. About fifty to seventy percent of these encounters are tailored, and the rest are somewhat random with a little tailoring. Each adventure has features that permit content from resources outside the core rulebooks, such as supplement books.

Alignment: Good

Featured Prestige Class: None

Featured Feats: Expert Tactician, Heightened Turning

- A featured feat only needs to be featured in a past or current adventure for it to be taken (if the prerequisites are met). I tend to feature one or two feats per adventure.

Featured Spells: Healthful Rest, Distract Assailant

- A featured spell works just like feats. It needs to be featured in a past or current adventure to be taken if the prerequisites are met. I tend to feature one or two spells per adventure.

Qualifications

- Session times are Fridays at 6-10 pm MST. A session will consist of one to two encounters.

- Roleplaying is recommended. You have to be able to roleplay decently. If your a wizard and have 18 int but act stupid all the time, this ain't yer game.

- Maturity: You must behave like a mature gamer. No whining about not being able to play your favorite prestige class, no temper tantrums because you didn't get a fair share of treasure, and no insults. Arguments are fine as long as they are controlled.

- Attendence: Keep in mind that when you are absent from a session, that encounter cannot be played and is instead replaced with a session of roleplaying between the available player characters. Please plan ahead. If you are going to be consistently absent in the near future, try joining the next adventure when you have more time. If you are absent consistently in an adventure, your character will have 'fallen behind' in order to continue propelling the game foreward.

Room Setup

You will be able to connect to the server using the unique alias: ugly idol firm zone

In order to set your charater up, send me an e-mail if you are interested in joining this adventure. People who have asked for reserved seats in this adventure will be considered first, but there are some seats available still.

Alkaven
November 19th, 2005, 20:31
The game started Friday November 18th as planned.

1 out of 4 prospective players attended that evening, putting the number of players at 3 for this adventure (which meets the minimum required players). The stars of this adventure are: Sapphire, Ingelri, and Ydera.

For those of you who could not attend for preparation, thank you for showing interest, but you will not be able to join this adventure. You can still attempt to join the next adventure two to three months from now which will also be a level 1-3 adventure.

For players who did attend:

I will unfortunately be unable to run this coming Friday (November 18th, 2005) due to an urgent commitment I have to keep. The next session is being moved to the next Friday after (December 2nd, 2005).

Alkaven
December 24th, 2005, 03:40
Discussion

I'm impressed by how well this series is progressing. It's unfortunate that I still have alot of editing and revising to do with The Broken Mountains and I unfortunately cannot post the remaining chapters until sometime in the near future.

This is sort of a suggestion post to you DMs out there, since running adventures will always be a new learning experience for me. Here's a few new ideas I've come up with:


Scheduling - Always plan ahead about two months. This gives players that much needed comfort zone to establish a good attendance record and keep the adventure fun an exciting. An absent player really does take away from the experience (Actually ran a session without Ingelri to experiment, and the players agree, the session sucked without him). If you have a dedicated day of the week you usually play, get your calendar out and build your adventure around the next few months based on the number of encounters in the adventure. If you have six encounters, and one session a week, that one and a half months. Pad about two extra session weeks on top of that for cancellations and absences. ;)
Holidays - My biggest mistake was not planning around the holidays. You can never expect all your players to attend sessions around december time as players (or even the DM) will be the most busy that month (Christmas Shopping, Overtime, Decorating the tree, Family, ect.,). If you run campaigns or adventures all year long, plan around December. If your campaign is going to be eight months long and four adventures, and it's September, run the first adventure, then the next tree after the holiday month. Besides, especially for year-long campaigns, that december could be that much needed break to rebuild some of that inspiration for the next year (and DMs have obligations too). ;)
Initiatives - It can be a pain in the *** when you've got a sixty foe encounter. Having to look up each enemy down the combat list can pad a good 30% to the time of the session, and screwing around with minor details like that could be a bore for the players. Every speed-up trick in the book that doesn't damage the principle of the battle is valuable. If that means clustering initiatives, go for it. Most foes delay their actions until their ally's turn so they have a bigger advantage, so you could cluster initiatives down to the lowest roll per group. Don't cluster the player's initiatives, because that's stealing away one of their major benefits (especially when one has +3 dex and improved initiative). I'm still working on ways to speed things up, so if you have any ideas, I'm all ears. ;)


Next Adventure
The Doors of Durden
The line of the Durden ended when Davock Von Durden was killed in Vanadict several decades ago. Strangely, his family's estate still flickers with light within it's windows on the northwestern outskirts of the city. An uncomfortable mist seems to well around it's stone walls, and not a living soul has dared to go near it.

Happy holidays. I should have story revisions for this adventure sometime in January. The next adventure should be sometime early in March. Those interested have had their e-mails added to a contact list for which they will be contacted prior to the start date.

kalmarjan
December 24th, 2005, 04:08
[quote]nitiatives - It can be a pain in the *** when you've got a sixty foe encounter. Having to look up each enemy down the combat list can pad a good 30% to the time of the session, and screwing around with minor details like that could be a bore for the players. Every speed-up trick in the book that doesn't damage the principle of the battle is valuable. If that means clustering initiatives, go for it. Most foes delay their actions until their ally's turn so they have a bigger advantage, so you could cluster initiatives down to the lowest roll per group. Don't cluster the player's initiatives, because that's stealing away one of their major benefits (especially when one has +3 dex and improved initiative). I'm still working on ways to speed things up, so if you have any ideas, I'm all ears.{/quote]

One of the best things about mass combat is the fact that you do not have to roll every monsters init roll. As a matter of fact, as you said, it is just a waste of time. From a person who has run mass combats with 60-70 or so NPCs... roll one init for every group of monsters. The orcs get one roll. The goblins get one... etc.

Then with delay, everything falls into place...

Speeds up your time, and gives you more time to figure things out.

Hope that helps...

Sandeman

Snikle
December 24th, 2005, 05:16
Initiatives - It can be a pain in the *** when you've got a sixty foe encounter. Having to look up each enemy down the combat list can pad a good 30% to the time of the session, and screwing around with minor details like that could be a bore for the players. Every speed-up trick in the book that doesn't damage the principle of the battle is valuable. If that means clustering initiatives, go for it. Most foes delay their actions until their ally's turn so they have a bigger advantage, so you could cluster initiatives down to the lowest roll per group. Don't cluster the player's initiatives, because that's stealing away one of their major benefits (especially when one has +3 dex and improved initiative). I'm still working on ways to speed things up, so if you have any ideas, I'm all ears. ;)


Fudge. I know this will burn allot of peoples ears off but here goes. What is the most important thing? Your party, and the story they are creating in your campaign. So when it comes to 20+ combat, what is the point of the battle? Is it to show your players that the road ahead is difficult? Is it to kill off one of the players? Etc, once you figure that out as a DM, then it all falls into place. Why are you rolling Int for everyone of those bad guys, when there are only say 5 players, all that matters are the ones close enough to affect the heroes. Who cares what orc #57 is doing if he cannot even see the heroes because there are 20 odd orcs in between him and the heroes.

To be bluntly honest with you, when I have a impending combat coming, I stop and think about why this is happening, if it is to show the players that the road ahead is dangerous, I play the combat up that way, the heroes just seem to have run into some tough orcs, maybe hurt one or two of them pretty bad (hope my players arent reading this). Sure, maybe I am not sticking to the rules, but you know what? Rules are guidelines, the story is THE thing, not wether or not Bilbo rolled his save vs stupidity or not. One of the best things I learned as young DM was to let the story flow, let your players have some input into the story, and it will 500 times better. If a player comes up with some outlandish crazy idea that totally blindsides you bad guy, let him have his day, reward him for being creative. You will be surprised at how that effects your game. Some may say that I am bending/twisting the game so much that it isnt D&D anymore, and how could anyone like that?
Ask my players.

(whew, that went way off topic)

John_Geeshu
December 24th, 2005, 14:25
Snickle,
What you propose is anathema to some die hards of D&D but in my view is the essence of good GMing. There's nothing worse than playing with a GM who is so rigidly locked into the story that the bad guy can only die at act 5. If this is the case then he should not appear in person until act 5. Some player is always going to be smart enough to get the drop on the bad guy if you give them the chance. At least this holds true in my experience.

Speaking of mass combat. Combat is one of those things that D&D does very poorly. My advice? Compress those 20+ enemies into just a handful of tougher foes for the heroes. It's easy to adjust an orc's attribute scores, BAB, etc., to make him a better match for a hero. In my opinion, large, lengthy combats are boring and should be avoided. The system wasn't designed to support them. In my opinion.

Alkaven
December 24th, 2005, 15:58
While story is heavily valued in all my adventures, battle is a very strong element in D&D. One could build a large roleplay adventure and never ever engage in any combat, or one could build a pure hack and slash adventure that could be straightforward and simple. However, simply because I emphasize story over hack and slash in all my adventures, it doesn't mean I'm sacrificing important plot elements when I throw in a rather large encounter.

While I still don't have the story revision done, take the end of The Broken Mountains for example. The last encounter featured a 50+ foe encounter. The battle erupted in a fierce charge between the allies and the enemies, and because of the targets the players and their followers had chosen, Bella stormed in and attacked the enemy leader, only to stumble and be met with Grack's axe. While I'm sure Ingelri and Aladane were strategicly thinking, they couldn't possibly have planned ahead for Bella's (unavoidable) demise. If I did not factor every soldier, they could have easily just moved around and saved her life.

Most warlike adventures I run, I keep within smaller scopes, such as the battle of Aurk. I divided the everything into parties and sections. The enemy parties could cluster and form a larger number of foes (which they did) or they could continue to storm the city from all sides.

Clustered initiatives work a great deal I find, and perhaps it wouldn't hurt to shadow out the extra foes that are unnecessary to battle, but most of the time, the fodder is not the primary target, the officer is. There's always an elite-class officer to every group of 6-10 troops. If there's 40 troops, there should be 4-5 officers.

Also, I tend to save large encounters like this for climactic scenes, like near the end. You'll notice in the Lord of the Rings movies and The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe that there was alot of development before the huge battle near the end. There would be the small encounters all throughout, but the final battle was of epic preportion.

I appreciate the suggestions though. They have indeed given me some insight. :) Thank you.

Snikle
December 24th, 2005, 22:31
Snikle,
What you propose is anathema to some die hards of D&D but in my view is the essence of good GMing. There's nothing worse than playing with a GM who is so rigidly locked into the story that the bad guy can only die at act 5. If this is the case then he should not appear in person until act 5. Some player is always going to be smart enough to get the drop on the bad guy if you give them the chance. At least this holds true in my experience.

Exactly my point.I view the story as a co-operative adventure between the players and myself, I never ever rule out changing the story when players surprise me. For example, recently in my campaign the players met a minor noble who I was just going to pop in and then leave, not really playing a major part in the story arc. The players ended up interacting with the noble, and this has spurred us on a completely different arc than I had planned, but one that will enrich the story a thousand fold. I firmly follow the belief that I create the framework, and the players help me fill in the details of the story.

gurney9999
December 25th, 2005, 00:56
Another idea would be to do most of the battle before your session even takes place. What I mean is, if the large battle is mostly between two armies and your party is only going to be able to affect a small portion of the outcome, go ahead and do most of your battle beforehand.

If your party does things that surprise you, go in a different direction than you expected, then you have to adjust during the session, but that's what happens every night, right?

Alkaven
December 25th, 2005, 20:51
Setting the stage while letting the players set the story is a golden rule to DMing, so I would never expect anyone else to NOT do that (An edit. Forgot the 'not'). Players are ALWAYS going to surprise me. It's impossible to know everything.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'adjust' during the session, Gurney. Usually when things go completely opposite to what I predict, I don't try to adjust anything. For instance, the last encounter (sort of an epilogue) was supposed to be the final exchange (the documents for reward). Except, instead of an exchange, Aladane was gripping the rucksack like it was his baby, and Ingelri was shooting his mouth off to everyone there. That's completely beyond what I expected. But there are always consequences to the player character's actions (and I did emphasize that before I began the adventure) and therefore, they got no reward, and Aladane got a beating.

Now, I can see 'adjustments' being made to the entire adventure over time, assuming it remains within the scope of the adventure itself, but that's usually something a DM naturally does after each encounter. Niles Affort was supposed to die, not Bella... But... Well... That's just how it goes I guess. ;)

gurney9999
December 26th, 2005, 18:03
I'm not sure what you mean by 'adjust' during the session, Gurney. I was referring to the idea of prerolling sections of a particularly large battle. If the party does things that would cause your battle to play out differently than you had planned (for example, the king orders the party to lead an attack to the east, so you pre-roll the western edge of the battle... but then the party decides to lead the attack west because it doesn't appear to be going well on that front...), then you would adjust accordingly while you play.

Snikle
December 26th, 2005, 23:10
I still stick with the thought that you can simply forgo the rolling of the entire battle. If I had a large battle that my party was involved in, first I would decide one thing, are they going to effect the out come of the battle?
In most cases (especially since I tend to lean toward lower level adventures) the party will merely take part in the large battle and not directly effect the outcome, I would skip rolling for the entire battle and concern myself only with the area directly around the party (sure I would still give the players the appearence that they are effecting the outcome, but they really would not be) and just verbally detail what was going on beyond the party.
If they were going to directly impact the battle, then I would look at the combatants that I would have the players directly battle, maybe throw in a few people extra here and the (the extra crew member in Star Trek), while the party was dealing with their particular foes, I would still oly verbally carry on the battle beyond the party (for example: "The battle looks to be going south, you are seeing far more friends fall than foes" or something such).

As a DM, I really dont have the time to care about how soldier #117's battle is going.

Alkaven
December 28th, 2005, 00:04
When your dealing with a massive war of over one thousand opponents, I can see the reason to section up the entire battle in order to reduce the unncessary workload. Besides, if you actually factor in mass odds, the result becomes as equally random as if I had just rolled all of the troops, which is unnecessary work.

However, I'm only referring to an encounter of approximately 50 or more opponents. That's not alot. That's more of a small band of troops. An entire adventuring party is automatically directly influenced by every opponent. Their followers are at risk, they are at risk, and each action they make could completely change the outcome of their battle.

As for those sorts of adjustments according to player actions, if there were two battles occuring at the exact same time, I would probably plan ahead and consider only the major events that need to be addressed per battle. In The Broken Mountains, Grack killed Bella, not Niles like I planned, but I didn't need to make an adjustment just because of that. There was a consequence as always, regardless of whatever my plans were to begin with.

However, I do understand what your saying entirely. As far as unpredictable actions that go outside the scope of an encounter or adventure, that depends on alot of the properties of the encounter or adventure in question. Already, it's a rule that player characters that exit the scope of the adventure are removed from the adventure (awarded experience up to that point). So if one of my players decide they want to send their character on a personal quest to go all the way across the world to find something that would help them on their adventure (whose scope is the adventure area and maximum time span), that player will have removed themself from the adventure. In the event all the players decide to do that, the adventure is over.

Now, for encounters, it's different. You leave the scope of the encounter, you've left the encounter, not the adventure, unless in some way you were leaving the adventure as well.

It's almost impossible to have an adventure without a scope. I suppose it's not a problem in long seemingly endless campaigns, but those tend to end abruptly, and lack closure.

LordTomar
December 28th, 2005, 00:30
When your dealing with a massive war of over one thousand opponents, I can see the reason to section up the entire battle in order to reduce the unncessary workload. Besides, if you actually factor in mass odds, the result becomes as equally random as if I had just rolled all of the troops, which is unnecessary work.

However, I'm only referring to an encounter of approximately 50 or more opponents. That's not alot. That's more of a small band of troops. An entire adventuring party is automatically directly influenced by every opponent. Their followers are at risk, they are at risk, and each action they make could completely change the outcome of their battle.


Im just a player, but in my opinion (most likely not shared by everyone) these huge battles, more then about 20 or so participants (including players) just seem to get tedious to me. At least if I get into one of these in FG I could just watch TV while I wait for all 20+ rolls happen, and then just scan what happened. But to me this draws me away from the game, and just make me loose interest in the game.

I would much rather fight a couple ogre then 20 goblin or orcs. This fight would be more interesting in my opinion or at least it wouldnt take as much time for us to get killed if it went bad.

John_Geeshu
December 28th, 2005, 14:56
Im just a player

You're not just a player! You are the most important member of the GM/player relationship. Without players we'd [GMs] be out of luck and bored.

Snikle
December 29th, 2005, 07:45
Sort of like tonight, I hate large combat, and think it is pretty much following the steps in a flowchart, boring......
Glad that is over, had to happen, but glad it is done all the same.

Alkaven
December 30th, 2005, 02:40
Well, with that attitude, I can see how it can become rapidly boring. But if each character plays a key role, it can become more interesting. I suppose if you treat it like a boring cycle of the game, you won't enrich the experience.

Sometimes the goal isn't just to win, and power-strategy and tactics aren't always necessary. There's millions of things you can do in the fray, such as create a distraction and run off with half a squad chasing you. Maybe your comrade fell in battle, and you want to foolishly avenge his death. Or the enemy chieftan is your rival and you want to duel him. Or you could just treat it like plain old boring combat where all you do is roll dice and hope you win.

As I said before, the DM sets the stage, the players create the story. If you just want to get it over with, then your not really playing. :)

Snikle
December 30th, 2005, 05:59
Well, with that attitude, I can see how it can become rapidly boring. But if each character plays a key role, it can become more interesting. I suppose if you treat it like a boring cycle of the game, you won't enrich the experience.

Well with 5 players, 4 NPCs, and roughly 20 odd baddies, that is what it becomes. As the players sit there and wait for their turn, be honest, it takes a bit of time to get around to each player. I dont care how creative you and the players are, sometimes a fight is simply that, a fight. In addition, sometimes a fight need not be a major encounter and is there for another reason: alert the party, provide an item to them, etc.
Personally, I cannot imagine a conflict between a party of heroes and 50 odd baddies, that I want to see, and how you make it fluid and interesting. When is your next big fight? Can I come observe? Never too old to learn something.

Oh I forgot to mention this earlier:
"And the master of Dungeon Mastering"
Pretty ballsie statement there, Alkaven.;)

Alkaven
December 30th, 2005, 13:16
Well, I take it your not a fan of very many board games then. Good ole' Axis and Allies tends to take forever to get to each person's turn, hell even games like Monopoly or Runebound or even something as simple as Trouble.

I don't think D&D was entirely built with in mind a way of eliminating player turns. Hell, I would invoke the rule of dialog turns if people asked for it. I used to do that when I had alot of players, and each one of them complained that they never got a chance to participate because their actions and dialog got overlooked.

The only thing creativity (and part of the improvements they've made to D&D) does is speed up the process through little tricks and ideas. If turn-based gaming is not what your all about, there's lots of freeform games out there (like BESM) that are all about the chaos and senselessness.

LordTomar
December 30th, 2005, 21:45
I don't think D&D was entirely built with in mind a way of eliminating player turns. Hell, I would invoke the rule of dialog turns if people asked for it. I used to do that when I had alot of players, and each one of them complained that they never got a chance to participate because their actions and dialog got overlooked.

I had a DM use the turns for dialog before... that was one of the reasons I could never stay in that guy's games for more then a session before I had to drop out.

Huge battles arnt as much fun for me... but if you also make it so I cant even talk unless its my turn... then I just wouldnt play in that game.

Snikle
December 31st, 2005, 07:48
Ever seen a game called The Window? That is extreme freeform, and a blast to run btw. Actually, I have always loved Axis and Allies, and Risk in particular, used to play it endlessly in high school, heck a few friends and I even made up a game based on Supremacy and played the heck out of it.

I am just saying that in a large combat situation like that, I would have to look at other options, simply because a small group of players could not really effect the outcome of such a battle UNLESS we are talking big magics or they were in some sort of leadership position over troops fighting in the battle.

Alkaven
December 31st, 2005, 15:37
Well, I did give plenty of examples of how a small group of heroes/elites can turn the tides of battle, no matter how big or small. It really mostly all boils down to the officer. Usually followers just run away once you kill their leader. Spells also go a long way as well. Fireball, mass suggestion, ect.,

Like a board game, your always going to have to wait until it's your turn. There is no way to eliminate that. Turn-based dialog existed because players aren't as fast with a keyboard, or when they talk, they aren't assertive and keep getting ignored. While it does slow things down, it's not fair that one person's enjoyment should suffer just because everyone else is impatient. As a DM, it's important to me that everyone is having fun, and if one or two people can't deal with being a bit more patient on their behalf, they don't deserve to play (assuming someone wanted turn-based dialog).

There's also those little tricks to speed up combat don't forget. I suggested clustered initiatives, and prerolling most of the stuff that becomes necessary. It helps speed things up without damaging the combat outcome statistics too much.

You can technically divide a huge war, but you would have to consider ratios in that situation. If the enemy army outweighs your army 3 to 1, then that means you have to be fighting encounters 3 times the size of your party (including followers, allies, and superiors).

Snikle
December 31st, 2005, 17:47
It really mostly all boils down to the officer. Usually followers just run away once you kill their leader.

I think you might be surprised how people react in combat situations.

ijason
December 31st, 2005, 17:52
I think you might be surprised how people react in combat situations.

More often than not, that is the case. No one really knows how anyone will react, including themselves. That's why we have 'training,' right? ;)

LordTomar
December 31st, 2005, 18:37
Like a board game, your always going to have to wait until it's your turn. There is no way to eliminate that. Turn-based dialog existed because players aren't as fast with a keyboard, or when they talk, they aren't assertive and keep getting ignored. While it does slow things down, it's not fair that one person's enjoyment should suffer just because everyone else is impatient. As a DM, it's important to me that everyone is having fun, and if one or two people can't deal with being a bit more patient on their behalf, they don't deserve to play (assuming someone wanted turn-based dialog).


The problem with turn based dialog is that durring large battles, there is absolutly nothing to do between your turns. And with really large battles these turns could take up to a few minutes each.

Now if I had to wait a few minutes between my actions or being able to talk, I would start to look for things outside the game to do, and if it happened too much, I would most like just drop out of the game. I play PnP to play PnP and roleplay, I dont play it so I can sit there watching TV untill my turn.

TruthRevisited
December 31st, 2005, 21:20
It really mostly all boils down to the officer. Usually followers just run away once you kill their leader.

Uhm.. I would agree with this statement based on video games, but nothing more. I have seen with my own eyes what happens when an CO/Flight Leader falls, and its not scatter to the wind.

TR

LordTomar
December 31st, 2005, 21:25
It really mostly all boils down to the officer. Usually followers just run away once you kill their leader.

Thats why there is a chain of command in units. Generals and leaders arnt stupid, they know that when they send men to war, people will get killed and some of these men will be the unit leaders. So when an officer goes down more often then not one of the other men will take over the unit. They wont just throw their weapons to the ground and run away flailing their arms screaming for their mommies... though truth is that could also happen...

Alkaven
January 1st, 2006, 05:55
I'm still not understanding you completely Tomar. Either your there with others around in a circle playing a turn-based game, or your there with others around in a circle playing a turn-based game. Now I've heard of people doing things to pass the time until it's their turn, but if I invited all my friends around for a game of poker, I'm not going to just put my cards down and go play my Nintendo DS while waiting for everyone to place their bets.

I've had six players in my entire experience of DMing end up leaving and becoming very disappointed simply because they didn't 'do much'. I mean, it kind of sucks when there's one or two people in a game group who never get a chance to say or do anything. Imagine yourself if you were the slowest typist in the group and never got a single chance to do anything meaningful, because everyone else went too fast for you. Is that fair?

Granted, if nobody had that problem, I wouldn't invoke the rule anyway.

And I think you all missed the usually part of my comment about officers. The followers often don't have a chain of command (especially in that particular era). They're just a bunch of troops in armor with a weapon. The leader is usually an inspiring figurehead and the ultimate weapon. If your leader goes down, and your opponent's leader is still standing, nobody knows what the hell they're doing. Loyalists will stay, and those who value life will run.

LordTomar
January 1st, 2006, 07:00
I'm still not understanding you completely Tomar. Either your there with others around in a circle playing a turn-based game, or your there with others around in a circle playing a turn-based game. Now I've heard of people doing things to pass the time until it's their turn, but if I invited all my friends around for a game of poker, I'm not going to just put my cards down and go play my Nintendo DS while waiting for everyone to place their bets.


Now your little poker analogy just doesnt work. When your playing poker, the dealer is not going to say to the people that are not betting that they are not allowed to talk. Also a round of poker will only normaly only take a max of 1 minute. While with a large scale battle in PnP can take a number of minutes.


I've had six players in my entire experience of DMing end up leaving and becoming very disappointed simply because they didn't 'do much'. I mean, it kind of sucks when there's one or two people in a game group who never get a chance to say or do anything. Imagine yourself if you were the slowest typist in the group and never got a single chance to do anything meaningful, because everyone else went too fast for you. Is that fair?

Now it is true that it would suck for the slowest typer because he wont get his comments in as fast as other people. But in the games I am in now, the players and DM are able to fit together the comments we are making and seems to not have any problems figuring out what order they are supose to be in. Now sure if the guy is a really slow typer this might not work for him either because hes only typing 5 words per minute or something, but then again someone whos typing that slow should look into joining a group that uses voice chat for the game.

What adding the turns for dialog does is punish everyone in the group, not just help out the player who cant type as fast. And yes I use to be a slow typer when I first started playing games online, but I got faster, and I also never really had a problem getting my comments listened too.

Alkaven
January 1st, 2006, 19:09
For large scale battles where 20 NPCs all get turns, you would normally address it the way you do with a book. A story would likely say: "The enemy mercenaries all charged towards Sarseo" therefore you would roll the dice for those enemies. It's a simple 30 second step. I move them all, I roll all the dice, based on hits, I roll the damage. The only thing that slows this down is initiatives, because when you've got four players and ten followers, and thirty enemies, that's like one big tangled knot of combat that really slows things down. But this is where I mentioned cluster initiative comes handy.

While I admit I'm a speedy typer, and even my current game group are quick typists as well, that's one extra requirement your adding to your house rules that ends up taking the fun out of the game for a few: "Must have excellent typing speed for optimal participation."

I would be absolutely prepared to invoke that rule and punish the other players because of it if one person requested it because they weren't fast enough. While it's important to some people to simply just wait for that one bored and irritated player who can't seem to get a chance at anything to just end up leaving because all they wanna do is satisfy the majority of other players, I feel that patience overrules that. If three people get tired of waiting and decide to quit, screw em. They shouldn't be playing if they aren't going to try and play with the slow new guy. They completely accepted that all they want to do is play for themselves selfishly.

Alternatively, the turn-based dialog is easily flexible. If one slow person can't get a say, just make it 2-turn cycles. Him, then the group. Speeds things up.