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Triple Advantage
Triple Advantage

Season 2, Episode 3 · 2 years ago

Ep. 15 - Beginnings of an Adventure

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Continuing the storytelling conversation, in this episode we discuss everything regarding session 0, styles of play, and how we set the tone for the start of our stories.

Wow, oh shit, are we live? Welcome everybody to the episode that you've all been waiting for of triple advantage. We're on season two, episode three, and we're continuing our quest to dive into the world of storytelling within your campaigns, how we generally incorporate rule sets and how he's try to mix and match game mechanics with the storytelling aspect of this RPG and any tabletop gaming session. Today, guys, we have Jordan and Braden back again and myself, Carlos, hosting Braden. I believe you're talking about play style as well for our defining DMG. Yes, we are perfect. So that's going to be a little bit later on the episode if you want to tune into that. We've been going from start to about page thirty four right now on the dungeon master's guide. We're starting to read it for to back because we figured that we have never actually done that. This is just some information for any new listeners that might be out there that don't know what exactly what's going on. So the for their ADO, guys. With regards of storytelling, I am starting another campaign brain. I know you get a little sneak peak of this beforehand. But I'm running another beginning campaign with some new players, some old players alike, and I just wanted to get your guys's perspective on this. How do you guys normally start a new campaign with players from session zero onwards to session one, but it can take the micare and just the go along with it. Session zero is definitely a super important element in setting up a new campaign. In my opinion, it's important to kind of establish what the tone is, what is going on in the setting so the players can adequately craft their backgrounds and whatnot. Is Important because there are house rules that vary from game to game, point via versus role for stats. Some in combat options, some out of combat options are available or not, some classes are available or not, high magic, low magic. Super Important to my opinion, though, is also really getting a feel for what your players want out of a campaign. I was recently. I'm in several sessions. On Tuesday we kind of rotate out DM's depending on WHO's available, but one of our players is think about doing another session. We were talking about US talk about is there anybody that has something specific that you really don't want to see in a campaign? Like you really like you'll leave the campaign if this is present in it, and I I was like it doesn't I don't think it needs to be pointed out in our group. But the one thing I said was like really taboo sexual stuff, like something like raper, something like that, which again I don't think the DM would have included and I don't think that the players would even think about crossing into. But we've all read RPG horror stories about players who do find themselves in those settings. So I think that that's one of those things that it's super important to just kind of open that dialog before starting a campaign about like what do you absolutely not want to see in this campaign? Because it could be that seems like a fairly obvious one, but there could be several other things that your players really are opposed to in a game, for sure, for sure, and that like open communication with the players, like you have to make sure. I guess when I was starting a campaign I actually looked up different things that you can talk about in in session zero just to make sure everyone's on the same page. It took a while to get through the list, but I think it's really important because it makes sure that the players know what you're comfortable with. And then also you kind of can say, okay, so will allow such and such a thing, but if it gets to you know, grusome or too bad, I guess, for the players, then you can all beak up like do not hesitate and say sorry, this is too far for me, let's try and do something else here. And and the DM has to be willing to kind of be like okay, yeah, totally, let's move on and and create a new narrative here. I think some of the things that I went through as well was things like like slavery. Slavery in medieval fantasy campaigns is something that comes up, for sure, in different ways, and...

...sometimes it's look down upon. Sometimes it's like Oh, that's part of the natural world or whatever. Like today in our society we obviously do not condone slavery, slavery, but does that mean it can't be part of the campaign? Like sometimes that can create a really cool backstory for your character. I don't know. I don't know whether it's something like that's like something that's definitely like on the table for people to discuss and say, okay, how do we feel about this? And obviously we're not going to go into detail about too much of that stuff, but you want to make sure that there's open communication there. That's an interesting one because I do have players that have crafted slavery influence backgrounds and I think even you guys ran up against it at one point in my campaign. MMM ME. Yeah, yeah, so, I mean it's something that I don't mind including in a background, but I'm not sure I would want to run it in person. Does that make sense? Yeah, like sure, a lot of those like really horrible things that can happen in the world. I'm okay with having those kind of things like in the background, but I would never actually run it on the forefront or actually describe any of those kind of scenes, just because it's that's not what the Games about really. You know, it's about having fun and you know it's nice to have those those backgrounds that can really drive your character, but I don't want to like see that kind of stuff during the campaign. That makes sense for sure, and these are pretty intense topics. For the first point of conversation on it said three of season two, of triple advantage, but all good, all good points. Nonetheless. I think what you guys are really driving for here is the communication between players, right, the the expectation between whatever you what everybody brings to the table right. As a DM, it's not only just your role to, you know, adjucate the rules of the game, but also to make sure that everybody's getting along and that the party, I mean like both in game and, you know, in real life, it's getting along and wants to play with one another and cooperate right. So I think that that definitely a factors. I mean, I haven't really encountered too many of those more serious topics and the campaigns that I've played, but definitely things like balancing how many combat encounters versus our p encounters you want to have, and especially with new players at the table right, because I find URP is something that people get into a little bit later, perhaps, but then at the same time we all know how boring it might be to run a really long combat session the first time you're playing the game right, like you're trying to get these people especially, and like my focus is especially with new players here, I think it was. You're trying to get them to engage immediately, right, like hey, I'll throw an Arrow at this Goblin. That's cool. What happens what action happens and you know how it is. You how do you move along based on that action, versus like, okay, cool, that's six damage. Now it's the GOB let's turn. They shoot you and now you shoot them again. Right. I feel like that kind of like step sort of breaks the immersion a little bit. Perhaps not so much, I think, like in our campaigns now we've gotten a little bit more accustomed to longer, longer fights, but I definitely found that was definitely something that I found that was kind of boring at first and I started playing the game and it's just I mean it's part of the mechanics, but it's I'm trying to think of club our ways as a DM that I can sort of maybe change the mechanics a little bit to fit a better narrative. Have you guys ever done anything like that? Have you guys have her used certain rules within the game to drive the story or maybe admitted rules outside of like like fudging die rolls, for example? I feel like we've some of US might have done I've definitely done that before. What sort's like this party is about to die, but they don't. I wouldn't know. Especially you most definitely go for the TPK. Yeah, it's an about having fun. Okay, let's take it a step back, everybody. Yeah, it's all about reality. If you want to be the first level adventurer that goes up against the Dragon, you do it, but you will die. And now, mind you, there is something to say about that. Like something that I've really wanted to do is maybe get a couple of you more experienced players and play a very hard campaign, something to the level of, if I have intelligent characters, I will actively plot against you as a...

DM. Yeah, that extent, right, it's not so much like, oh enemy, is there ago? Is there no agger? It's Oh, enemy, you're in a trap, like this was planned and you're gonna die. Like that kind of going after the heeler first, followed by Oh yeah, like it makes you cast a spell, like they're all going to switch targets immediately, like you know what I mean, that kind of campaign. So I think it definitely takes a different kind of player, right, like it takes both people playing together and knowing what abilities my characters might have. But I think that would be really fun to just some like a meat grinder level. Yeah, that's interesting, because I definitely. On that note, I definitely have moments where I am it'll depend on what I'm playing as in terms of a an NPC that the characters are faced with. If I'm playing with like some beast store, like some you guys were facing lizard folk and hold of the Dragon Queen, and they weren't exactly a super intelligent bunch for the most part. Right, it's probably going to be super instinctual combat where it's like, Oh, you're the thret in front of me, or Oh, I can identify you quickly as like the bigger one. We're going to swarm you right, versus like, if you're faced with a wizard that is well versed and fairly intelligent, as wizards tend to be, they're probably going to have the nuance to be able to go okay, I'm not gonna run straight into a shocking grasp against the frontline barbarian. What I'M gonna sit back here for a minute and pick up the people that I noticed or hanging back, because they're probably going to be a little weaker but maybe have some other tricks up their sleep. So it's all about nuancing that. In terms of going back to your first question about altering mechanics. It's interesting because what you guys are currently playing hold of the Dragon Queen and you're currently you stumbled across a White Dragon. Stumbled across the stumbled a literally stumbled across and drags. It was very out of nowhere. But there's a bunch of moments are where I was clenching on. I was I had the STAP block up, but it's a that would have been a very, very, very tricky challenge for you guys at your level, at I'm pretty sure that what the party stride like with there's no way we fight that. where a level six. What are you talking about? Yeah, absolutely. So I did some I was doing some research afterwards. Just yesterday I was looking into some stuff towards that and because I was like, do they expect them to fight this white drag? Because you guys are even like this. This just a parties for you guys are five and I still don't think you would stand a chance. And most of what I came across is basically like, Oh yeah, no, a lot of combat in this module was just broken. So take a really critical eye to what you can possibly tweak, even if you're not going to tweak like the flavor like. It's still an adult white dragon. Maybe tweak the stats behind that a bit, MMM, so that it's a lower health so that it's maybe encaping in it is as certain. Yeah, maybe it's incapable of using certain abilities. Maybe you drop it down to a full lower dragon level. Like it's still flavor wise and adult White Dragon, but maybe it's not a stat wise and that a white dragon, it's a yellowoint. Yeah, I mean the the one nice thing about that encounter and the session that you ran for us is, I've mentioned this before, and it's having a high wisdom care or a higher wisdom character is I feel a little bit better about metagaming a little bit more with that and just knowing that, like in game, for example, the the whole thing about the cult was there bringing wealth to this dragon right like it wouldn't putting two and two together, that there's like lots of diamonds and gold and treasure in this horde or right of this White Dragon and we just stumble across it. Jordan, I literally just told Braden I walk up and I dump all of my gold in front of this dragon, say something about worshipping it. And then walk away. But I was very concerned that the rest of the Party wanted to fight this dragon. I think that that's that's a great point and it was pretty much the perfect move to have made there. But really I think that that's also a frenchiating factor between playing with newer players and playing with older players, because I don't like I don't like to read the Monster Manual of my spare time because, like, I play in several campaigns on top of DMING. So I don't want to have like this soul in depth back knowledge exactly. I don't want to really met a game almost unintentionally, just by knowing as much...

...as I can about these creatures and then entering into combat. But I mean, I didn't really know the specifics on a white, adult white dragon before I pulled up the STAP block to run it against you guys. But if I'm entering a cave and there's a massive white dragon on the ceiling, my first instinct is, Oh man, that would look good on my wallet's No, let's see, let's get out of this room where this Gargantuan threat exists. Let's just let's go somewhere else and deal with that later. Like yeah, centuries later, I might actually go in there and just test it to see what happens. That's that's how you end up frying. Yes, yeah, but it's fun, I think, sometimes to just kind of be like, Oh, oh no, it didn't do any damage, let's get out of here now. But I find that that's where, you know, as a player, those decisions are really hard. I as a player, it's super easier to kind of just hey, can I just poke this, like what will have? And Right, yeah, and I think you got to be really willing to just lose your character out right, because there's certain scenarios where like if, if we're talking, like if I were to run a meet grinder campaign, right, if you go into the horde of a dragon and you throw a stone at it and you're like what will this do? And the dragons like not, you know, described as will talk to travelers because it's board. You know, it's probably just going to try and eat you. You know, odd sir. Yeah, so things like that, to me is where I have to start getting creative as at the end, because, okay, you guys, I like I mean I've definitely had this experience before where I know that this encounter is harder, like the the encounter you guys had on the ships in the early stages of Tomb of annihilation when you lost Le Beaux. That encounter was a difficult encounter for sure, but ultimately, as a DM, I felt that the pirates that were on board had sort of overwhelmed you guys, you know, like from behind the screen. So, as pirates they're looking you know, logically it made sense that I could save you guys by saying like, as a pirates, you know they're going to take you in, take all your shit and try to hold you for a ransom. Right, but you guys decided to continually fight and, you know, get a pillar killed. Yes, I I presented the out, but it's one of those things where it's like, okay, well, like on the other on the other hand, these pirates could just straight up kill everybody and there goes the campaign. You know, I think, fine, I'd be interested to find a group of players that might want to run like a dark soul style game like that. Maybe, and this is where I'm saying like maybe the the the the mood of the campaign could be like the mechanic is you can respawn for example, yeah, right, where you can turn planning something about that right, right, and respond campaign. That's exciting. That's exciting just because, like to me it would be exciting to pursue something like that. But as a game it's not fun if you know you're having these extremely hard parties and you have are extremely hard fights, you have only one attempt at them and then once you lose, you lose. Right. Like there's got to be a change in mechanic to, you know, encourage beating at some point. Yeah, for sure, and I think, like with that respawn thing, you kind of I'm working on different mechanics as far as like what can make it interesting, because you also don't want to like just keep throwing the characters into the same combat over and over again, right. So I'm trying to like find ways to to work with a respawn system that doesn't make it completely boring, I guess for the for the players, ain't really grindy, you know. So I think it more of it almost might be more of a psychological kind of campaign where you start to mess with the players a bit more that way. Just I was thinking with regress to response, because I'm going to have given this a little thought and like I do like the way final fantasy handles it, with the Phoenix downs like some sort of item that has like a spell, like a like a vivified spell immun in it, to like giving the players like a little bit of a fighting chance or something like that instead of just like maybe outright respawning. But I don't know, it's a weird mechanic because, like if you want to run a campaign, then your enemies would recognize that these players are back. So like the whole feel of it, I would think, has to change, you know, yeah, yeah, exactly. So it is interesting but at the same like I don't know, because because the players, I think veteran players are better at this. They're better at getting into character and understanding that their character has survival instincts, you know, they don't...

...want to die generally speaking, then they can kind of get involved in that where and like if their character doesn't have survival instincts, then they're better at role playing that aspect as well, where they're like okay, well, this you know my if my character dies, my character dies, but that's because he's kind of messed up in head or whatever. Right, right, right, right, whereas I think like with with with some like newer players, it just feels like, oh well, I'm just a player, right, and my character is just kind of this thing that goes and does things and if he dies, it doesn't really hurt me, like yeah, it just means that I have to restart and it kind of feels like Ah, Oh, you know, that kind of sucks. Yeah, so I think this part of it is also getting your role as a DM is also getting the players excited aboundantors and how exactly some sort of an investment into the characters, because otherwise, yeah, you're right, it's easy to just throw away. Yeah, so in my campaign that I'm building right now, I'm like, I'm putting a lot of for thought into the campaign and trying to get the players to make like backstories ahead of time and I'm kind of getting them to become invested in these players. It means a lot of extra work for the players, so I kind of feel bad about that, but at the same time I know it'll pay off as far as like, they they will want to play these characters through to completion. You know, they will want to have them survive, and so it makes the campaign more immersive in the end, right, whereas if you just kind of give them a pregenerated character, there's you know, there's no attachment there. Right. So I think I think the investment is worth it at the in the end, even if it feels like a bit of extra work. Yeah, no, no, for sure, but I think it. Yeah, like you mentioned it, right, it's not only just like a vetteran player thing, but also, as I start dming more and more, there are things that I want to explore more in the game. Right, so that also requires me to invest more time in and in doing so, you know, you, you, you, I feel like you get more keen on fun little mechanics you want to introduce and how to engage your players better. Right. Yeah, because he usually, when I when we, like when we all started out, it was okay, I'm interested in DND. WHO WANTS TO BE THE DM? Hey, I'll do it, and you kind of just read the rules quickly, you know. But now that I'm kind of more into the hobby, for sure. Okay, what can I explore? You know, what can I what kind of games can I run? What kind of, you know, worlds can I build? And how can I connect everything right, like I think that that kind of architect brain takes over a little in every one of us when we start playing more seriously, you know. HMM, yeah, it's I just want to get you guys as a little input on that. I'm I'll keep you guys updated on how this campaign is going. So the the gist of it is I'm trying to get four players to start the campaign and they're both kind of set up in pairs and I want to have shared back stories between these pairs and then they come together. That's kind of something that I'm attempting to see if I can get better cooperation right off of the start of a campaign. You know, even if, like, even if two halves of the of the party kind of operation, it's separately, they kind of know how to fight with one another, you know, and seeing how maybe these two groups come together is both part of this story, you know, but also part of the earlier game mechanics where they can figure out, okay, we can take out goblins. We've done this before. US characters right, we know how to fight these things, and seeing if that's sort of helped along the earlier stages of the campaign. So I'll get I'll keep you guys updated on that, because it's definitely fitting with the theme that I want to go through with this with the season. But that's that's pretty much it for that. I think for this week. We're on a schedule here, everybody, for our listeners, and I think it's Braden's time to to tell us a little bit about the Dundon Master's guide. Rapper. All right, yeah, schedules got to keep moving. Let's let's take a look at the DMZ for this week. Last week we talked about tracking time and how we deal with that in our universes, and also about ending a campaign and what that looks like and what that means teach of us. So this week we're going to take a look at placed out because, as we've kind of just touched on nicely tying it together in the first session, there's kind of a little bit for everybody and not everybody wants to play the same way. So it's all about finding that balancing act of how you want your campaign to run and how your players want to campaign to run. This talks about three kind of overarching placetyles and obviously there's small niches and variants of all...

...of these and one of them specifically takes up the majority, I think, of what players find in DD. But let's just take a look quickly at each of these very broad categories that they got here. The first that they have is hack and slash. This is your typical like it's nonstop, it's very black and white. You're playing, as it says, facing clearly evil monsters and opponents and occasionally running into good and helpful NPC's. I would say you could probably even flip the script if you're running an evil campaign, like if you're evil characters, you're running into very, very defined good people that you need to hack through. I think the idea is basically like you're playing a very rigid archetype and you're facing a got off against your opposite rigid arch type throughout the entire thing and it's just going to be backtoback, encounter, encounter, encounter, mowing through, moing through. Mowing through, which is not combat, is admittedly probably my least favorite part to DD. So this is definitely not for me. I'm wondering how you guys fair with players that like this type of campaign. Carlos, will turn to you first, because I know we do have the the brief Cheek Leer team in our in our chilled party. It's so personally, the difficulty between that is that it's not so much that it's juggling between hack and slash and, you know, some other version of Gameplay, it's that only half the party is committed to that. So, you know, running combat encounters definitely in game time takes a short amount of time, but in session time takes up a big chunk. So my difficulty between that is I understand the need of hack and slash within the campaign. I know that Jordan and braiden our. I don't Jordan and Morgan. Yeah, you guys are pretty much spearheading that hack and team. I know for a fact that more than likes that more strategy based combat mechanic in the game and I know, I guess, that Jordan you want to have that as well, but it's difficult when it's a separate kind of group doing it, because you know what ends up happening is maybe predetermined encounters and locations become would take way too long right and if like the biggest examples would be like if you're across town, for example, there's no way that the other group can participate in that. So I try to find clever ways to maybe introduce things that pushes the party back together. Sometimes it's not successful, sometimes it is, and when it is I'll try to, you know, have the climax of the session try to be an encounter of some sort or an encounter that's been sort of premeditated throughout the campaign as well. I just because I know that, again, even within this party, everybody kind of wants to participate in combat in a different way. Now, that's not to say that Hackns to me. To me, Hackenslash is actually a pretty fun part of the game because I also like that rts style of play, but it's as a DM it is hard to like balance out like the pace of play and how you can move forward with a story and how you can introduce new things right like, for example, I think the last I think, personally, I think the last can't. The last session that we ran into was pretty fun. Everybody was engaging pretty well with one another, but objectively, it wasn't really much that happened. The entire session right, absolutely very far right. I was a bizarre session, but it's but it's weird because I I felt as a DM that everybody seemed to be engaging with it right, and that's a good sign to me that everybody's enjoying the game. But on the other hand, there was really not too much combat and they got kind of weird at the end. But again it I can see that in this case, you know, players might want to push a certain narrative or a certain a certain you know, gameplay into the session. So it's trying to balance that out a little bit. But now I find hacknslash pretty fun, especially once you I think especially once you have more advanced players, for example, like in your hoard of the Dragon Queen. For me, hacks is really fun because I'm pretty confident in knowing what my monk is capable of. So I feel like hey, if there's very little of me asking you...

...what a certain spell does, if I can cast certain abilities, you know. So the pace of the combat seems to be moving a little bit faster in that campaign, I find. So it's kind of Nice to try abilities out as a monk and a hacks environment, especially because I don't have the highest charisma. So it's all like social encounters are really going well for me in that campaign either. You know. So I'd rather resolve conflict with my fists, which inherently means more combat. Jordan. Any cuts on this? Yeah. So actually, as always starting my new campaign, asked the players kind of what they were interested in doing as far as like what kind of setting they wanted, and I was actually kind of surprised to hear that over half the crew was interested in a dungeon crawl type of campaign. I was like really, like, it doesn't involve a whole lot of like the storytelling aspect of it. If you're going through dungeons that are significant, unless you kind of build that into the dungeon. But it's definitely an interesting thing. I I personally enjoyed the storytelling part and then having like the Hackensa aspect as like, oh, this is the defining like moments that kind of like move the story and progress it, and then the the the in between parts are kind of more like the social aspects and the Oh okay, where we going next? What are we doing next? Kind of thing. So right, well, I think that's also part of really because we're all true or at least we've all been trying to run long farm campaigns. Right, so we I think because of that, I think I've been a little bit more invested in the story side of things, not just the Dungeon Crawley parts, because I feel like I could just introduce a you know, you're all adventures, you're here for a job and then next week we'll put another job in front of you and there's the story in between. Doesn't really matter that much, right right. The next section that it talks about is immersive step storytelling, which, as you can probably guess, is pretty much just the exact flip of Hackenslash, if focuses more on dialog, on exploring interactions between characters and NPCs and between characters and characters and things like intrigue and things like making checks, to do more social things versus more combat things mentioned specifically, like you can go through entire sessions without anybody attacking anything at all, without really encountering combat. The next section that we're going to talk about after this is kind of the in between, which is a fusion of the two, but I'd say if I had to choose one of these, I definitely lean more towards the immersive storytelling, definitely as a DM and probably in my player preference to just recently. I mean I think the last two sessions we played in my homebrew campaign of gun by entirely noncombat. Is that correct, Ordan? Nope, I don't think so. I think it's been one session so far noncombat. I think. Didn't. We have been at the circus for two sessions now. I don't know if you did, in that case Sept since you got there. You're right. Okay, so that's been that's been fairly narrative versus anything else, and I'm wondering what you guys think about doing that those sessions versus always happen to kind of put combat in there. I can always enjoy that. I are. I mean, I think speaking from both the DM Lens and a player Lens, I think I definitely enjoy those goofy kind of sessions. They were. We've gone over this, I think in DMG or I've heard this somewhere, but it's talking about like the importance of downtime in a campaign, even in a story, even in a story type of campaign. Right. Like again goes back into what kind of the what the players want. But if you are running a long form thing, there is going to be downtime at some point and I've I've definitely enjoyed those sessions as well. You know, I think one of the sorry, Glad God, I was just going to say. I was thinking it kind of like like you said, it kind of comes down to the players, because if the players kind of know what they're doing and they enjoy that immersive storytelling part, then they can move the story along themselves. But I find when it comes to the storytelling aspect, the DM is almost less involved with how the story moves. There are certain aspects that the that they DM can can do, but then sometimes, I've yield that the players can get stuck almost, and so the action or the the HACKENSA aspects kind of gives them something that's like...

...a kickstarter, like Oh, something is happening, I have to take care of it. Boom and now what's the after effects and what happens now? That kind of thing, and so that kind of can kickstart the the story telling aspect of it as well. But I do think it would be really cool to have a fully political campaign, almost if you were all born into like some sort of noble family and now you got to like almost like a gner food and Shit, yeah, where you got to like try and take the throne or or keep the or keep to two nations from warring or or something along those lines, where you're kind of more in charge of people and maybe you send people off to do different things like assassinations or or go to war, or maybe you're a general and you have to come up with the tactics for the the soldiers in the infantry and that kind of thing. I think the only thing that I could see that having an issue is with regards to outcomes of encounters a player might not necessarily have been involved in. So sure, you say I send a group of rebels to fight my opponents group of rebels, who rolls the die for that? You know, does the DM roll the outcomes? Because I feel like if that happens, a player of might you know if it's a negative outcome, well, that it was the player ever in control or was is it expected? Like I feel like it takes away a little bit of that direct control of player might have. So I don't know how that would fit in with most players. I that's that's my concern with that. I flayers again definitely have to have perseverance. It's well, the thing is really yeah, like you're taking away the the the the play aspect of it right like you're almost adding another layer of variability. I don't know if that's inherently good. I don't personally see that being too effective right away. But again, you can probably find somebody who's, you know, into this tactical combat warfare count you know, plays risk, play, play like risk a little bit. Yeah, I definitely will agree with what you said on the storytelling, on how combat can be a kickstarter, because I've found certain moments, both as a DM and as a player, where, in a very RP environment with somebody, nobody is nobody makes actions, you know, nobody makes anything actionable within the campaign. Everybody's just talking about what else do I see? Is there something off about this? And then some other players like I will go and watch the door. Is there like trying to find that hint of information to safely act on an encounter? You know, I find that that happens a lot when it's just to our p heavy sometimes it kind of gets into a stale made of like nobody wants to take or make a mistakes and nobody's really making a decision with their character. But then at the same time as a DM. You know, if you're running that URP session, the enemies would also be like why are these players just like not doing anything and like just wasting time? I'm you know, yeah, so I do like that. I've definitely using yeah, I definitely use combat to just be like Oh, and then this happens. What do you do? And then okay, we're in it again. Tell like a carrot on a stick, but I don't like to use that too much to like to drive the players places. You know, the final kind of area of play that it talks about here is just marked as something between, and this is really with a vast majority of campaigns tend to fall. No, I've never seen a campaign that is one hundred percent hacks or one hundred percent just storytelling. There's always some kind of a variance in there, and I think that that is because neither one of those things can really sustain itself without the other. Like if you just wanted to do a more immersive storytelling, you could probably read a book, and if you just wanted to do hack and you could go play some kind of like a beat him up or shoot them up or something. It's kind of the the ability to interact within the space between those two. That makes dd a little bit more unique. Maybe not unique unique. I guess there's games like Sky Rim and whatnots that allow you to kind of walk that line as well. But go ahead or I will say that some of the one shots that I've played have been kind of like arena style and and those are very like almost just a hundred percent hack can slash, where you go in and your objective is to kill or defeat everyone else in the arena and that's kind of it. And I've had that in the middle of a campaign even right where like you have a full session of just okay, there you go, you're in this arena, this is going to be the thing that's going on. DVP kind of sessions...

...can last pretty long that way. So I think that that's when you might run into you know, like but a full campaign that's only hack can slash very unlikely, for sure. It just said. I just I got a game mode epiphany, as we always do in this podcast and just generally in life, but a some form of arena one V one, DM versus DM kind of battle royale per se. You know, it's like a gladiator match, but as a DM or as a like. It's weird because I get I wouldn't want to have somebody adjicating over the rules of like Hey, can I do this to the other player. I would just want to be like hey, I'm going to do this and then the other dam taking in a cupping the rules saying there like maybe you find a balance of it, but then you have like I launch a fireball and then I want to run around and well, I don't know, I'm thinking of this is a really rough idea here, but one V one arena's far DND. Just make a fifth level character and go to town. You know, I kind of fun I don't know, some Super Smash Bross right thorn of it. Yeah, anyway, the final thing that it ends off up here with is just some questions to consider when trying to decide which play style leaning towards is preferable for your party. It asks are you more of a fan of like realism, like something like the souls games, where it's just like gritty and there's always consequences your actions, or are you more focused on kind of the end result, where you just kind of want to get them to that next wavement? Medieval fantasy or like more modern thinking? What's your preference? Serious or humor, lighthearted or intense action, thorough planning and advanced or improvisation? This is something that the three of us have talked at in lots of length varied elements of things. Or do you want to narrow in specifically on one topic, like is horry r jam and that's all your campaigners, or do you want to kind of switch it up between several different genres? And the one that I really like is moral ambiguity versus like very black and white? Do you want your players to see like yes, this is the way that things should be done, we're going to do that, or is it like no, you're a person in the world and that's always going to be at least a little bit great, so deal without the way that you would personally. I guess there's a lot of questions there, so I don't really know where to start with an answer. He but okay. For regarding the first part, with regarding the realism of the game, I don't mind consequences in my campaign. I think it's important for I think it's really easy to get carried away into a murder Hobo campaign if you don't have any consequences within the game itself. Right. Again, depends if you're running a long form story versus a on shot. But you know, if the players are constantly just using fireball to clear rooms that have and it's in people in them, people might start looking at them weird right. So that's so some sort of in game consequence of the players might have. With regards to realism, I like to keep try to keep it with like, I don't know, I have like the like the science and physics brain that kind of always lingers around with regards to my campaigns. So I like to have it as real as possible within the realms of you know, no, actually, that's funny that you say magic, but like just in general with the game, just try to keep the physics of it as real as possible just so that it's easier for a player to sort of feel like they're playing the game persone. Yeah, it's easier to imagine yourself in the game if you kind of understand how you feel within it. That's kind of an odd thought, but like if you know how much your character weighs, you know it's a reasonable amount. You know. You know, playing some two hundred pound character. Yet as a new character, as a new player, you know, like to be able to put your mindset in the game. And then magic is kind of what breaks those rules a little bit. You know, magic is what lets you get into that supernatural and feel like a hero, you know, or those like the the extraordinary abilities that your character might have, is what breaks those normal bounds, you know, makes you special when the game in general, I like bold actions in my campaigns. I like players taking the reins of the story. But again, that can be it depends how much warning I put in front of the player because again, like we mentioned before, a dragon encounter,...

...you know, your party could just be like charge, like well, and that was the last of the story. And moral ambiguity I'm comfortable with if the players are aware of it beforehand. I would never do something like I said, I would never make a situation where, like, the players complete a quest and then I hit him with like a moral twist to their actions and et Cetera. So I think that that's a little Tropian, a little shitty to do. It's like, Oh, you guys say this village and then this village continued making drugs for everybody kill like that seems like Shitty. Like the players need to be aware of where the moral you know, where the gray areas lie. So then I, as a player, can introduce our as a DM, can introduce mpcs that can be, you know, little little moral guides chirping in the background. All right. So I believe that wraps it up for this addition of divining the DMG. Those of you listening, what do you think? What's your preferred play style? What do you think about those questions that we just asked? Let us know at Real City Society Jordan, what are either right? Moving on to our critical thought of the day. So, guys, I had this weird thought the other day and I was wondering what you guys thought about it. So in most DD campaigns you set up a world and you have specific gods or you just say any God is real or whatever. In most campaigns, I guess you kind of say, okay, these are the ones that are the main ones that are worshiped. What do you guys think about like having a world where the players are actually wrong about the gods, in the deities and and all that kind of stuff? Like what if you know they worshiped a variety of different ones, but there wasn't actually one or there was only one. Or what if they only worshiped one but there was a variety of them? How do you guys kind of like? Do you think that that's an interesting idea and like you could kind of like develop a campaign around that, or do you think like that's just kind of I mean, if you're talking about the campaign of planet Earth in general, I feel like a direct example from there. Yeah, like that campaigns coming to close sometime soon. We should probably not try and replicate that one. Yeah, we're definitely getting into endgame content here. Yeah, the global plague happening, possible possible aliens on confirmed under and you know general the world wants to get flooded again. Who knows? Meteor next month? Keep me posted. I'm subscribed to world ending feeds. I just wish level twenty didn't involve us being stuck in our house for the full duration, but it is what it is. I think like I think, like any MPC in game, you kind of hope that level twenty involves you directly and not just you as a passive observer. I hate that we're the NPCs. That's a silver but to actually answer your question, Jordan, out of what you've proposed, I think it would be interesting to take a group of experience players and put them in a world where the gods don't necessarily exist, because it's just in a lot of pretty much every campaign actually, like it's assumed that the gods exist, right, it's a fact. It's not just part of like those part of the DMG. Remember. Yeah, we have gone through that. It's really established facts of your world that God's exists, like it's just something you kind of have to deal with it. Versus I think it would be interesting to play it where the gods don't actually exist. But maybe you don't make that so clear. You introduce the world and it's more like it's exactly like the world that they're used to, where there's different Pantians worthy worshiping, a different gods, are different religions. MMM, but you don't necessarily get the return. Maybe there's no real clerical powers, right, there's no real Paladin Channel and Holy Divinity, because there is no holy divinity. They just have this they have this belief, but it's completely unfounded. You actually just give me another idea, kind of Oh no, introducing well, that again, it would depend on your players right in what they're rolling because if, for example, they are priests or Paladins or some of that draws on divine energy, it might be shitty if they can't access it, all right, but if you don't have any of those players, may bee a question. Game is something like in the season two of...

...legend of Cora where her connection to the spirit world gets severed. So as a players continue their campaign, part of the campaign is they turn off or they destroy something and all of a sudden it's severs the divine connection on the material plane and now all priests, all Paladin's, all of a sudden are depowered. How does that tip the balance of power in your world? Who knows, you know, but I think that'd be cool because that's as players all of a sudden they get back into this world where they're like, Oh shit, I know what I did. Everybody's fucked. But that, you know, that also means you can't resurrect people anymore. Right exactly, like all that is just disconnected. No getting like divine you know, guidance or anything like that. You know, you can't like just ask someone, Hey, what's going on in the world over there. Nope, that's no answer. Sorry. It would definitely make for some interesting plot lines, like how do we can we re connect these hmm, these cut tethers? How do we do that's like just a campaign just in general, like you're like a researching group and you have found the item that restore that whatever. This is the thing that I love about storytelling is you can really take any idea and grow your own plant out of it, you know. Yeah, take a terminals and propagated a different way. But yeah, that's an interesting concept, especially because I think a lot of the mechanics of this game are rooted in some sort of divine power. You know exact you could do that. You could do that with anything, right, like the you could go the opposite Rd and do like a magicalist world right, like all of a sudden, everybody's connection to the weave is severed. No more magic, magic items do not work anymore. Nothing magical occurs. MMM, only divine energy, you know, or some of them, I don't know. Yeah, it's it's easy. This is I'm find easy, just like, oh, another dot connect, another dot connect. Yeah, so that was my crazy thought for the day. Thanks everyone for listening. I hope you enjoyed the episode. Season Two, episode three completed. Guys, whoot. Yeah, so, for those of you listening, we'd love to hear from you. Send us a message at our instagram account at Ross is city society. And, yeah, look forward to a few different things that we might be publishing coming up, probably in a few weeks, and hope everyone's doing well. I'm Jordan, I'm Carlos and I'm ridden, and we'll see you guys next week.

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