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Rialacha Teach Mhorgunna

Before you can run ...

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This is my first blog here at the Fantasy Grounds site, but not the first time I blogged about FG. And this is certainly not the blog I had hoped for. I had dreams of success and victory.

You see for over a year I have been playing D&D 5E on Fantasy grounds. The idea was for old friends to be able to gather and reclaim friendship. It was important to me as a good friend had just passed. We had been "Dueling DMs" in our campaigns. At his funeral we did what everybody does ... reminisce and swear ... with good intention ... to do do better at keeping in touch.

So after a little more than a year, I had one player. Kevin is my nephew by choice. His father, Will has been one of my best friends since 7th grade. Will introduced me to Tolkien ... and I, him to RPGs. Finally, he has found time to join us. Now there were two players.

Then out of the blue came Jim. Jim has been in my campaigns since he was 16. He would play every Saturday, at the youth center where I worked for 8 hours and then we would pack up our stuff and go for our Night game. He had been on the fence a bit. Plus the fact he was moving back home, it only made sense to wait until he settled in to the new abode.

Now Kevin and I have sort of been figuring things out as we go. But now the dynamic has changed. My concept was to set up a tutorial. I had been working on learning to create maps a bit more professional by watching Geo Quester's tutorials. I found the explanation of his process really helpful. (He streams and reruns them on You Tube) I thought it's just sitting there ... why not actually use it? So I added a few more elements ... dressing it up a bit more and throwing together what I hope would offer a simple dungeon to give a taste of possibilities.

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The concept was there had been a string of kidnappings. Children snatched right off the streets. As the players are meandering, they are witness to another such crime. They would follow the man through the neighborhood, but can't keep up. (the cultist is wearing boots of speed) As they try to pick up the trail again, they hear the ringing of an alarm bell. When they investigate, the party finds an old man trying to get the attention of the city guard. He explains that he saw a man carrying a struggling child disappear down a deserted alley way. Upon investigation, the party would find a trap door leading to the dungeon. (at this point they players have 14 minutes to stop the ritual that will sacrifice the child. I would then drop an urgency die ... 1d4 to determine how much ahead they were in minutes when they started down the alley way. the clock then starts.) The drop was 30' and there was a rope to get down and up. (note the broken ladder scattered around the chamber.) It is populated by 10 goblin minions (half archers/swordsmen) and a goblin boss. (as the players ascend one goblin will light the rope 6hp 1d6 fire damage per 10' per turn) After they are dealt with there is a locked gate (goblin boss has key) After that there is a battering ram trap, another locked gate, a swarm of rats, and an encounter with the cultist supported by two skeletons. After that is an alarm and the boss battle against a priest, two more cultists, a skeleton and a zombie. (the priest is sacrificing children to Orcus for undead.)

This was my second FG primer. I probably should have stuck with my first one ... which Kevin and I started on. I called it Pitfighter and it is basically gladitorial games with some role playing. (below is my first FG map)

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We fumbled our way through our Google hangout connection (I think we may go to the phone call mode rather than web cam to save band width.) FG loaded like a champ. My first mistake was that we tried to roll characters all together. Definitely a one on one situation. With Pitfighter I had characters done and just handed them out. Fun was instantaneous. Last night was a bit of chaos. Everyone was talking over the other. People couldn't find things. <sigh> Not so much fun. Will had technical issues, (they may have to run a cable to the computer rather than try over their wireless connection. I wonder if since they are in the same house whether they can just share the computer that Kevin plays on.) The technical issues brought us back down to one player.

Jim eventually got his Barbarian to a playable state and we ran it through a round or two with the goblins in the first chamber. What little was done was epic. The brute was a killing machine. I think Jim enjoyed the ease and freedom of 5E as he threw goblins around. We may have even convinced him it is worth the price to become a licenced member.

I'll take that victory.

After all ... before you can run ... you have to learn how to walk.


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  1. LordEntrails's Avatar
    Sorry to hear you didn't have as much success as you hoped for, but glad you did have some.

    As you found out, character generation is best done (the first time at least) one-on-one.

    As for multiple users on the same wireless node. I do this, but it is best if they connect at slightly different times. i.e. have the second player wait to join until the first one finishes connecting. Also, make sure your maps and images are too large, either in file size or pixel size.

    Looking forward to hearing how your next session goes
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