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Triple Advantage
Triple Advantage

Season 2, Episode 5 · 1 year ago

Ep. 16 - The First Encounter

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

How does player dynamic change between groups? Is it driven by the DM or the players. In this episode we talk about social dynamics in game, especially dealing with new parties. We continue our divination of the DMG and explore the various types of narrative styles. Finally, our critical thought of the week is discussed.

Hello welcome everybody to the everdeveloping, still somewhat without a schedule triple advantage: podcast yoursource of all things, table, top role, playing game, DND and so forth, I'mCarlos and to day we have Jordan and Braden yet again for another episode,guys, hello can't wait up a day that the viewersare not surprised to hear that it's both Carlos Jordan Ann Breden on thePoou this week, Ri got to keep everybody on their toes.I think another one is, I'm surprised our viewers are still getting podcasts in general.So there's that for good notes today, for you guys we have samegeneral structure as we've had for the past couple of weeks, we're going to in the later sections of the podcastware, going to dive right back into the DMG with brain. Taking point on thatand Jordan has yet another critical thought he just keeps coming up withthem. That's just an endless font of creativity here, but more on that later right now guys,I actually want to talk to you about something really exciting. I startedanother campaign. I started TM another campaign for a brand new group ofpeople, and this time I actually curiated the group a little bit. Itwasn't just an open invite to our facebook group. It was more so pickingout people that I knew would maybe work well together and picking other pop,but in general, like the group, doesn't really know everybody else in the grouptoo much it's for people, and I have the pairs of people essentially knoweach other, which I, which I thought would be a good ideawith regards to getting some engagement and you don't want to throw in a bunchof random people together and expect them to interact right away, but in general I think the firstsession went really well. I I'm running a hybrid version of thelost mines of Fan delver with dragon of ice spire peak because they both takeplace in the same city, so I figured May as well mix a match, but yeah with that in mind, guys. Onething that I really found interesting when dmming was it was a completelydifferent player experience right. It was it, wasn't you guys and not to saythat, there's anything inharently wrong with you guys, because we tell eachother that all the time, but it's just such a it, was a differentdynamic and it was kind of Nice. So I wanted to talk to you guys about thatplayer dynamics at the table and how you guys, within the first couple ofsessions, may be figure out the rhythm of your campaigns. Do you guys doanything in particular? Do you prep it, or do you just kind of go with the flowand figure it out as you go I'll? Let Braden go first on this one and 'rasking from a DM perspective right now from a plaer perspective, I'll open itup to a play, a perspective as well, but O for DM asser from the DMSperspective. First, it's really it's tough to say, becauseI, the group that I play with, contains a lot of the same people that areplaying across several of our campaigns that we played with as DMS and playersin the past. So some of the dynamics are already there and you just kind ofhave to let them happen. I find that a lot of the time it doeshave to do with how well people know each other,because I know for my for my homebrew campaign. You'll getcount of the boyfriend and the girlfriend pair always pairing up andagreeing with each other on different things. The people, the long time like tendveterans, will occasionally pair up and have some more creative ideasversus se en a morn recent players joining the campaign versus. I know like in the campaignthat I run with: U Carlos The hold of the Dragon Queen Campaigne, you guys,know evh nother, but it's not like not as closely especially in a DNDcontext as they do in my homebrew Campin. So thedynamic is still like you guys are together as a party but you're, notexactly you're, not exactly having these like close groups of twoor three, where your really clicking with another player in your really exploring those avenues. So I don't. I don't like to kind of impose my ownideas as to how the dynamics should work. I like to just kind of let itwork if it does as a player pretty much the exact samething. I like to kind of Sussut the group in my character and feel like who,what character does my character like Jive, with like what what's a good Meshand then I'll, try and play off of that, and if it keeps working, then awesomeif it doesn't back to step one of we...

...dragon. So for me, okay, so I play in both of yourcampaigns. For the most part, I try to find outwho my character would be associated with. Most, for one of them was verydifficult, but for the other one, my character is a bitmore chaotic and it was easier to find the chaotic person that was in linewith that same character. Mesh. My other campaign actually is reallyinteresting, because it I play it with my three brothers and then some familyfriends that we've known for a long time. So the like, I guess, like we're allfriends there ar we'e known each other for a really long time. We know how weact and we know like all the little buttons that we can push to mess witheach other and that kind of stuff. So it's really interesting to see thatcomingto play. It is true, actually that a lot of the like players will stickwith whoever they know the most outside of game. I've always kind of found that you knowthat doesn't always work with your characters, but people like to do it because it its it's it's the real life kind of crossing over right, yeah yeah. I think that that's with regards to the campaign that Ijust started, it's going to be like a four session campaign, type of thing.It's just an introductory story, but one of the things that Idefinitely planned out initially was getting them to pair up, because oneplayer was absolutely new to the game. The other one had been playing for acouple of sessions, but nothing nothing long term. So I thought it would beeasier for them to create a car crat characters together and in the campaignthey actually come from the same origin. One of them is a very royal blood type of person and the companion who the other PCthat's playing. It is his guard, so it was really fun to just immediately havethat RP element within the dynamic of the group. And againit's not. I mean it's always up to personal preference as a DM. I guess ifyou want to maybe shoehorn certain people together, but I'm finding I'm finding a little bitmore fun with with doing that in the sense that therewas very it was smooth. You know the the R for a brand new player to come in.I think it was really helpful for them to have a buddy to go back on and tohave that to have a rhythm already establishedwith them on how they're going to at least interact with one another incharacter which really gave it gave half the group. You know a sense offlavoring and the other half they kind of knew each other as well.So the whole campaign with I think for me,my goal- was: How do we make adventures that are, you know essentially meetingthem each other for the first time in a bar, for example, have that sort of real in betweenplayer feeling of okay, we're just startingthis and we're all just meeting each other, but how doo we not make it weird.So that's a little, maybe I'm not! MaybeI'm not describing that well enough there, but O it's. It totally makessense. Like often times like it's like it's like using Meta gaming, a littlebit to bridge the in game to the player, youknow yeah exactly I so the campaign that I am about to run.I have two pairs as well that have kind of combined backstories a little bit,which is awesome. It always makes for really interestingRP like right off the bat just because they have some sort of history thatthey can go off of in character, and that really helps to kind of kickthings off. With my other campaign with my family, it was easy to get kickedoff because we already knew each other, and so there was already like thatchemistry like we knew how to act, and we knew how to you know be together orwhatever, and we could kind of pick up on different cues that way when youreally really know each other, you can kind of get into that RP, but it's alittle bit more difficult and I definitely recommend like based on myexperiences, doing some sort of a shared back storywith someone it's it's. I don't know it's just better.

I think it was a lot more fun as a DMto run in general. So'll. Give you guys a little bit of more detail in thiscampaign. He the biggest things with the guys, isstarting. It was getting those linkd stories sort of established before the firstbefore the first session. Even though the quest that they're running is likehey adventures, here's some gold go, get it all right, but another thing that I that I did-and this was more of a game mechanic choice again for trying to sort ofmitigate this new player. This wall that you might have as a newplayer is all the characters are actually at the Max hp that they couldpossibly be. For that level. I did not let them roll their hidpoints. So, for example, one of the charactersis a fighter, and it's level three, so it has with the Constitution modifierand the level I've given them all Max, HP,CH, imyou level up you're, just getting whatever maximum possible hpy wouldhave. So what what? What that did, I think, isit lets them. Take a couple extra hits in combat. You know that I found was critical when thethird component of this adventure comes in, which was actually running themonsters like they would attack. You know I hadscoblins. The first was it's lost, mines of Fen, delver right, so thefirst encounter was goblins and instead of just hey four goblins pop out andthey're, just shooting at you, it was hey, a volley of arrows comes out ofnowhere and you can't see anything because these golands immediately wentback into the shrubs, so they had to figure out how to find them.You know it wasn't difficult, but there was that extra layer of difficulty inthe combat which wasn't just I attack they attack. I attack in a first likelevel of one encounter, so I'm really excited to see what this Max hpoplewill. Let me do as a DM, because I think I'll be able to more easily runmultiattacks on opponents without worrying that I might accidentally, youknow, kill someone in session one or two right, which I think was one of themore difficult things that I hav that I that I found, especially in the earlydays of DMING. I was fudging a lot or I was futching a lot of rules justbecause I didn't really know how to balance encounters. You know interest, so I'm letting you guys know because I'llkeep updating the viewers and you guys as to the listener. Sorry, it's not avisual podcast yet, but it's definitely been a little bit morefun. I'm actal also running the average damage when monsters attack the PCS. Ijust take the average instead of rolling each time. I found that itspeeds up a little bit just a pace of play, but again that's just a flavoredecision on my part, but it's been pretty fun like as for a first session.It was actually you know, it ran really smooth and, I think is like I don't want to Toke my ownhorn here but, like you, can definitely feel the experience as a DM kind ofgrowin. You know the ability to sort of like pull the story along e's becomingso much easier. Now. Have you guys found that I guess like?I know that I know that we've been running pretty long term campaignsthroughout the majority of our DMI anyways. So it's kind of hard to say,but I think it was. It was nice to do this for me because the only othercampaign that I really ran as one that I play with you. U Guys so right, it'snice to see it's aprogression. What ID the? What did your players?Think of the average damage? Don't know, I didn't tell them up its no mechanicthat the players need to know. I just told them how much damage they'retaking, but wouldn't they figure it out after you know a couple shots hidden,it's the same damage every time yeah. I think they made a comment with er atto like expecting it, but I think again it's kind of usingthat Meta gaming a little bit right, because if you know a Goblin is goingto deal four damage a turn on average, then the threat level of a Goblin isalmost immediately established as a player right right. So I don't know I'll see how I might notcontinue to do that. I don't know, but it was. It was nice because t there's alot of Goblin, so I didn't want to be rolling for each attack either. Youknow I wanted te combat to move along because that's one of the biggest petpeeves that I have and not to knock it on breaching clear team, but combat ecombat in general takes a long time right. So I'm TRYINGTA as a DM I'mtrying to figure out ways to drive a...

...narrative, but also you know, keep itmoving along because it I find sometimes like that. Okay, let me rollfor seven enemies. Tell you how yhally you know it breaks the pacing of thecombat, or at least what I'm hoping to get out of it, and I think that's. Whythat's what I meat with the first question in in a sense to is like whatkind of choices do you guys make as dms to keep that pace of play? You know,keep that that rhythm in your games, but don't know, have you guys ever doneanything like that Anhy Metagami kind of hacks to playerpsychology. I wouldn't say that necessarily I tendto just in terms of encounterbalance I tend to especiallywhen there facing waves, if it immediately lookslike they're gonna just steamroll through this encounter. It's like Oh,look, three more emerge from the rock back there, Hu, not sure if that'sparticularly a hack or what we're referring to, but it's something I'venoticed it works not as well the other direction. When you overload theencounter because there's not much, you can do in that's case, except startpulling punches, but definitely did that before to yeah, like the you makean encounter, you break it up into wave, so you have a little bit more controlover what they're hiding it's allright wher. Were you going tosit an acput you off? No, that's that's pretty much it. I noticed that thattends to tends to at least on my end make it alittle easier like if they're looking really really rough. It's like okay,maybe maybe there isn't a three hiding behind that rock. Maybe maybe this isit I've I've. Also, though, I'm guilty of letting player choices frestrate me, especiallywhen they get really cocky, and then I immediately go. Oh, you want to getcocky. Here's all eight of the things that you're facing all at once. Insteadof the five and three separation I had originally planned have fun yeah, it's an interesting balance here.Right because I don't know, there's there is thatsense of a powerdynamic as a DM right like you, don't want to be it's likeyou, don't want to you, don't ant to play and act as if you're, this God inthis game, but you technically are too right like but like I find thatsomething. I've had moments where, like there's player, Ha, there's frustrationbetween player, choice and like things, things like you're, clearly metagaming,and you know that this is a dangerous thing. Why are you trying to kill yourcharacter? Those are the things that frustrate me as a DM, and I think I'vegotten a little bit better at handling that this new group has not even in the picture there, but moreso choices with certain characters and other campaignsguys it's like you're trying to die, and I guess like this is death yeah I mean personally, I I tell my groups straight up beforehand,like I'm not going to pull the punches. I'm sorry guys if you go in and you'refighting something that you can't handle run just do it like that's what you have todo or or don't fight them in the first place, like whatever you doing, I'm notgoing to pull any punches here. So if your character dies, your characterdies like that's it. I think I think I hit at one of thehardest moments that I had when Dming, to be honest, was in Tom, a dilationwhen half the party got petrified no fuck to do as a DM, because at that moment, if you guys would havechosen to continue fighting, you would have died for sure yeah. ButI can't tell you that right. I can only allude to it so much.You know I mean I as one of the petrifiedcharacters in that I kind of had the gift of Hindsights, because I wasn't inthat followup session, but I feel like especially for our group of experiencecharacters you walk into a room. Half your party is instantly petrified andthere's not at least a little voice going like. Oh maybe this is a dumbidea. Then you get what's coming to you, but I think that that's that's that'swhere I'm trying to get to at least my personal goal is at Dm is to find thatnice little niche in between the metagame and the character choices andthe player choices that that connection of this is dangerous. You know, becausethere is a disconnect between a player and his fictional character, going intoa room and it's Oha Medusa. You don't know that right. Oh, if Fros half theparty, I can still do it because I'm...

...the hero in this story. Well only so much. So it's that's! That's where thebalance. I think this little balance comes from right because, like I wantto keep a storygoing, but events happened that petrified half theparty, but if the players want to attack the remaining creatures, I haveto let them right, even though I know it will end the story. So it's true and it's a weird balance,yeah yeah one of the potentials might be to aforshadow. I guess I guess the powerof this creature or whatever or whatever thing you're about to run intowhether that's through different, like books that they've come across or ifthey actually see it like absolutely obliterate something it'll help to likepaint that picture in their head like. Oh, maybe we shouldn't do this. Youknow, even if, like you, don't obviously haveto like you, don't do that for all things but like if you were to do thatkind of stuff, it might be something that that the players might be able todo figure out like Oh yeah. Maybe weshould yeah yeah absolutely and I think it's a information delivery as wellright. I, like that's one of those encounters that I thought saying:lifelike statues, often enough, would have been really direct as to whatyou're encountering, but I was leveraging player knowledge,not character knowledge, and I think that was my fault as at tm, because you are supposed to find out, or atleast allude, that it is a medusa that you're fighting or you're going tofight. But again it's just. I didn't know how to handle thesituation up until that point yeah, so you almost have to like make NPCs thatare more powerful than e than the Party and then run them in and have them getobliterated and then make a new NBC that somehow it gets entangled withthem every time you have something like that: Yeah Yeah, but yeah. You know what this this. Thisconversation ou can continue, and I think we've taken up enough time withthis short discussion, but next week I'll talk to you guys a little bit moreabout that which is more. So, how do you deliver exposition in astory to drive that narrative even Fr even further, so we'll get to that nextweek? I think it's a pretty good time to move on to our next segment, Braitn, Carlos, all right, I'm distracted! Now, I'm excited forthat next conversation. Let's take a look at the dungeonmaster's guide. Last time we met, we discussed playstyle and balancingbetween hack and type combat, just kind of nonstop will to all go. Go Go, comeat all the time versus immersive storytelling more episodic and focused on the iner struggles of the differentcharacters and how you can make that come to life, im your gapes and wherethe balance is Werey, the balances N. each of our campaigns this week we're going to take a look atsome some ideas to get some things flowingin how you might decide to run yourcampaign. The first thing that we're going totalk about is character names, and I find it interesting because it's talking abouthow everybody should kind of be on board, with names kind of as anextension of what the theme of the adventure is, it mentions, you could have names likea Sethis Trevok, I'm not going to try and pronounce that third one Cayronstuff like that, and then it's naturally going to look pretty weirdwhen Bob rules up to join the adventure OAPLAC the Mageman AK, the Magemat, notthe one. I was thinking of that. I was thinking of the same flayers previousdruid character, who walked in with Bill Iremember. We had Phoenix O no way itwas. We had build. Yes, because after we derided him, he decided that it wasbuill with three LS since that the Mageman's not a badexample as well, but I'm trying to think of any that we've had in ourrecent campaigns that just kind of don't Mesh as much, I will say themajormen is kind of a wild name, but on the same time the background for Thisourcer is bulkuro. So...

I think that's okay in that sense, aslike the addressed name of this person- and I think if, if this Contin, if thiscampaign continues further than just the Tomb of annihilation, storyline wowill explore some of that a little bit. There is some plan in mind withregarding your actual character, back sories, because you guys some of youguys have given me actual threads to pull on a W, which is, you know, really fun forme, but yeah. I think we've had a character.That's had a couple of quarter, life, crases and just esams acouple of time, which has also been interesting but yeah. I actually didn't think ofthat too much Braden, because I ev like when I think ofbout character creationwhen I think of naming things right like for me. It's pretty easy to justsay: Yeah, I'm making a real character in this world, but as a player rightlike the options, are hey I'm making someone fun that I want to playussright. Of course, I'm want to name them Johnny with a silent X. Jordan, do you experience this at allin your campaigns or is it the ar they a pretty just just the previous examples? I've beenin both of those campaigns? Oh, I know a bunch of people likeputting in like punny names. Oh sometimes those can can really bug me. I'm curious! Now, Oh okay, like so one one character, was Ling Gweeny, I hate I yeah, I'm sorry, I asked Ni family has been established inwaterdeep for a long time, eaas a as a brief aside. This is tangentiallyconnected at best, but I don't know if I'll get another chance to tell this onthe air. I have the same character that playsboth bill and the machman. His current name is not so much a name. We refer tohim as jl because he plays his character as having tarets, because if foree does, ofcourse, and in the delivery of his name, he startshe goes yes, my name is, and then it devulves into a series of expletives and on his character, shoot when hegave it to me. It said J and then three expletives and then ll, so we just started referring to him asjail, and then I give them a hunters permit,which is something that they need in this fictional universe, in order tocomplete officially sanctioned bounties and I actually went through, and Iprinted off, like physical hunters permits, for them to have just as kind of like a fun thing thatwe were doing. I was like yeah, you just need to sign it as your characterand everybody whois signing it and he's sitting there pensively. I was like what's wrong me a penny'slike no I'm just trying to decide. If I want to sign this with my real name ornot somewhody, your real name he's like well, that's not my real name. I waslike so what's. Your real name is, like I haven't told anyone an I'm like, butyou should tell me I'm the DM Yeah L Woin. Let's do a quickinterjection here and a PSA to all seven or ten audience, members that wehave. You are not playing against the DM Esyou're, also not playing with the DMte DM is just there to get the game moving. Iyou have if you have storyhooks thatyou want to throw into the campaign let your DM no thit's Ust, not a ecretyou're, not pulling surprises on the DM, because it's hard to drive a narrative. If allof a sudden, you have this other long lost family and insane background thatyou're suddenly pulling out- and I have to improvise on. Let me establish thatin the world with you, you know you're, not again, players, please. You are notplaying against anybody in this game other than the tasks. Ahand very well said very well so, and I saythat because I don't want to say you're not playing against the DM you'replaying agaist. Other players- that's not true either! Your not collhaboration is key and that'sactually something that I did with this new campaign. I took them in. I startedthem Oui'm the same way I did...

...in the Tomb of annihilation with theAdventuris guilt, except the little anecdote that I gave. The NPC was hey.You guys are a new party. Let me give you some advice, stay together, so thatis good advice. It was a way to you know, sneak Meta game into. You know areasonable setting right like hey this guy's, giving people quests these guysclearly don't know each other. Let me give you some advice: New Adventurers Mirht. I feel like outside dractice entirely.Let's move on next Stup we've got whether you want to run a continuingcampaign or an episodeic campaign. Now I think that what the three of us runwould generally be considered: continuing campaigns, a continuingcampaign being you kind of move along with a a large arc type idea, butyou're kind of like, like the story, is one continuing story versus an episodiccampaign. Think of like an like something out of like a s, car tube orsomething where, every week, it's the same characters back with the samedynamics, but every week is like a completely different, disjointed storythat they're going on kind of, like kind of like how I kind of run oneshots when you guys bring back the same characters yeah. I think that, generally, ourcampaigns collectively would be considered continuing, but Thi Hav anyof you ever run an episode of campaign or would you I would actually and I'm actuallyplanning on building a larger scope B. This goes ingeneral for just the boral city society as a whole, the ability to be able to create acharacter and then just jump into a story that somehow ties in to thisgrander world is really exciting to me, and I think,like you mentioned right, it is more like a show like each session. The characters go onsome form, like some long form, adventure that has a resolution. At theend of the session no mind you, I think that that doesrequire a little bit more time commitment, because even now I would be hard pressed to create a full and enriching narrative with like a two hour time slot. I feellike that kind of episodic campaign might require you know three hours,four hours of playing which not everybody is willing to sit down and dojust so just so. You can explore more than just the one dungeon you know, but yeah gnintohours yeah, and that's what Imean right like it's Iti would I would be hard pressed to dothat without you know these big sort of wipe cuts per se a like you justfinished this room, and now you went back to the in and handed like. I meanyou work out with the players. Maybe that could work. That could be somegood pacing for a stort, but I would prefer to have more gametime. Ithink, to you know, start a story and finish it like like it. Like I mean I just thinkof like Lord of the Rings, for example, like all these things are kind of like one one, one like like the first Lordof the rings right like you start in the Shire and you move along and all ofthat takes place in like three hours I feel like you could do that and acampaign, but you need that time. You know to establish initial plot toestablish you know some mid story and then a climax, an and a finish.Otherwise, you don't have a story right, and I think that would be kee for anepisode of campaign, as you need to have a story each time you playotherwise it's just Oh. What do we accomplish? I don't know yeah exactlyit would it's. It would have to be a pretty planned out campaign and it would have to be like I'd almostlike avoid dungeons in general for something like that and just have likesmaller battles, because battle sakes so long and then try and have some sort of,like I don't know, like meedy story in there instead of combat. If I were to do an episodiccampaign, that might be where more of a like and sorry what's it called the storytelling immersive storytelling type of campaignmight be more suited for an episodic type of thing than like a Hackin Lash. So moving on to our last section, ittalks about the campaign theme and when I read this the first time I figured itmeant a theme almost like genre like is it a horror setting? Is it a fantasysetting or what's the no theme, more...

...meaning like? What's the what's the deep kind of idea? That'sunderpinning all this is the idea related specifically to mortality and actually looking at Teomof annihilation, I think thit's a really good example of that's the ideaof these these undead or previously having Bein resurrectedpeople now dying again. And what are you going to do about that? How are yougoing to stop? Essentially, how are you going to stop deaf campains revolving around evil andIntrinsic Evil at the center of everything not just focusing on outside features,but campaigns focused on the players themselves and the playersbeing troubled? Like maybe that's the theme ti the flaws within the heroes and how would one run that essentially- and I thinkthat's the last thing we're going to discuss so my question visv? That would probablybe, would you guys identify a theme in any of yourcampaigns right now? I don't think I can. The campagn I just started, for example,is just brand new, there's no general theme associated to that, yet I think from a DNSE perspective intoannihilation. I guess a theme would be like Dungeondelving at this point, but I wouldn't necessarily put it like agood and evil type thing. I'm not sure I'm hard pressed to findthat I'll. Think about that. It's hard to put us is good neeval type thingwhen Mi e Caltf the party is not good. Well, I mean more so like it's one of those realizations thatI've had where I think, maybe the gravity of wire on this quest hasn'tbeen emphasized enough. These are just things that I kind ofnotice, based on retention of information, for examplelike players like the big ticket item here, is likethe soul, monger and each time it's like what is that again, like fuck an I why that name does not stick withme. They no Soit, but the name is dis not, and it's not to your fault oranything. It's just. I think like as a DM. I have noticed that we're gettingto this point in the campaign where you're very close to the final act per se, and we still don't know what we'rereally looking for. You know it's US iterative things that I try towork on, but you were going to say something: Jordan,Yeah. So with my campaign that I'm building on wild mounts, I actuallyasked the players ahead of time what they were expecting out of the campaign and what kind of things they would liketo see, and so I've kind of used that as like theyre their responses to that asa way to build a theme for them. So I don't want to like give away too muchon that kind of stuff, but I've used the answers that they gave inorder to build a theme that I think kind of matches what they were lookingfor and then also I've noticed some of thethings that they've put into their characters, and I think that I willstart to use that as part of the theme as well or as almost two two separatethemes that are running at the same time and I can introduce both of them at atat different times. So I really like the idea of having a theme, because itkind of makes it feel like a a story likethere's one story that that the group is kind of following my du, that I'm more of a planner than I am animproviser. So that kind of makes sense why I would enjoy that kind of stuff.So yeah that that's kind of I don't wantto say too much I want to. But I don't want to that's. Okay, like I'll, be updatingyou guys with new chapters of that new campain that I'm running as it happens,you know and arector and like maybe you can talk about it retroactively like Ihave been with him adihilation. I don't think I've been spoiling anything withthe CONVERSATIONSA 've been having, but I also I'm not going to tell you guyswhat comes next. You know man, no insider details on triple advantage.If that's what you're expecting you guys got to go, find it somewhereelse. Whole reason I'm here, but if you do want insider information on thethings that weare releasing go check out our instagram page at Royal CitySociety, we're publishing content on DM...

...skild, semiconsistently and Witd love for you guys to go check itout and give us any feedback that you guys have it's all irrative, it's all for fun, sodon't be afraid to just check out what we have and you know Halla at us. If you have anyconcerns or comments or whatever I don't know, how do you engage withpeople online when you record previously, and then your post a daylater Strang but anyways go? Do that Arigt? Continuing on off of that, Ithink that that brings us to an end of divining, the DMG for thisweek, while you're over there checking out our stuff at real cuty society,leave a comment on the post for today's episode. How do themes factor into your campaign?What are the themes? Tell us a fantastically hilarious character, namethat you've had run in your campaign or that you've had as a character, but nowI think it's tame to move on Mister, Jordan, yeah, all right so going on to criticalthoughts, guys all right so for this week, I'm going to go off of the the themethat we were talking about a little bit with Carlos earlier and session onesand stuff like that. So for you guys, do you DM differently for new playersas opposed to experienced ones? And if so, like? What kind of changesdo you make I'll answer and say that I don't DM differently for either group, but I have mad drastic changes to how IDM atcertain points of a story or between sessions. Maybe as I'm ruaning acampaign, I read something interesting that I think I can introduce. So I dothat, but I don't tend to DM in a differentflavor between groups. I think maybe that's part of the allureof a DM in a sense right, like you, have your the unique the unique take on a storythat a particular DM might give you, I think, is part of the art of this gamein general. Right, you wouldn't necessarily say. Oh this person, youknow ye like, for example, like like personally right, like my d style, is definitely a hybrid of otherDMS that I've seen and other things th that I've that I want to incorporate.So you know little things like everybody saying.How do you want to do this right, like maybe that became more popular becauseMatt, Mercer and critical role, but it's such a great line to give aplayer right like it's. Such a great and engaging thing to say to someone hey, you justsaw a monster. How do you want to kill this right? Get that Seratonan bumpwhen n, when you get that choice, you know it's like. Oh, this isn't just anattack. It's you know, coop a GROPS, Kuta grap. I don't knowit was butchered sorry any French speakers out there, but and then I have a littlemikemurrals in there. I think that's when I started introducing the rule for either perception or insight.You know youll determine different aspects of this story. Based on thatchoice, and I saw I think it was heroes of the Vale whenI started watching Mice Mars. Do that and then just after watching him andhow his little happy fun hour that I, like, sadly, it doesn't happen as often anymore butseeing him and how he thinks out, like balancing mechanics in game, hasdefinitely influence a little bit on how I develop mechanics, an game and yeah. So it's I think it's like anyform of art really with regards to you know you might draw your musicalinspiration from a certain artist right in the same way that you draw. You know,game, mechanics that you like to use from other dms and from other things,you've seen. Don't know, that's that's my take on it. I think I've I've founda little niche on how you know I talk and how I expat it like at how Iexplain situations, but I don't know what about you. Brid I'd echo pretty much the same thing. Idon't change up my style really from campaign to campaign, and I do alsotend to echo a lot of my influences and I think we have pretty much the sameinfluences for the most part. I will say anecdotally. That isoccasionally to my detriment, because when I do have new players,especially new players that are coming in to an experience session like werecently had,...

I really don't slow down the pace atall for them when I probably should, and it's a lot of kind of whiplash on their end, whenthey're suddenly being tossed into this, and I'm just like throwing out words that are probably meaninglessbuzzwords to them that everybody else is seeming to pick up on rightand. It's definitely something I feel like.I do need to be a bit more compassionate in that regardess towords the fact that they probably don't havemuch of an idea o what's going on beyond the very very basics, but I don't know it's it's something, I'm not fantastic at yet forsure, Idon now jod. What about you whers?Your am instration from. Do you change it up? I I'm definitely have the oppositeproblem as Braden there. I think I might change up things a bit too muchwhere, if there's a new player in the group or new players, plural, I definitely takeit a lot easier on them. With regards to just everything I leteverything slide and my Dt, my NPCs are a lot dumber or the DCS are lower or anything along those lines just to kindof like give them the idea. I guess of success and kind of give them an ideaof like this is how the game is run, and you don't have to worry too muchabout these kind of things yet and hopefully down the road. I start to geta little bit more like okay. Now your experience, I'm going to startincreasing the difficulty here. It's it's not it's not very good damming. I don't think because if I amlike changing the difficulty based on how many R, how many new players thereare and that kind of thing then it kind of you know- I don't think the DM issupposed to do that. I think, if they're really running a story, thatthe difficulty shouldn't change at all, but I can't help myself so then I think, and then it goes allback to that general conversation that we had, which is just how do you get your players andespecially new players, to engage with the story right if they're failing at every moment,it's not going to be fun exactly, but at the same time I could see thatbeing the case as well. If you have a mix of players and it's clear thatcertain actions by some party members have seemingly succeeded more often than others, so doyou change like DCS between you know players in one session or do you do it in separate sessions and stuff likethat? Well, so I would definitely like I would set the DC to be the same forthe group at that time. But if there are new players in the group, then tthe whole difficulty for everyone kind of decreases, and so it just like. I don't know, I think, for theexperience players. It takes a little bit of way for them because you knowthey've seen success and they know what that feels like, and they know all thatkind of stuff, and so sometimes failure being added in there kind of adds totheir like anticipation or or fear or kind of. Like. Oh, no, like what'sgoing to happen, I don't know a little bit of anxiety there, which can getyour blood pumping and, like you know, that's how they can get theirrush, whereas I think the new players, like you know they don't want to belike. Oh No, I fail, and now the group is looking at me like. I did somethingbad you know, or that kind of thing. So I don't know what the right mix isthere to yet I'm still kind of feeling it out so yeah and then for sure. Imean like, for example, right like in he inthe session that I ran for this new campaign. One Goland ran away and once they gotto Crag Malhaidaut, I just had the GOPLINS that were on guard, be sleeping objectively right, that one goblinwould have ran and warned everybody, but at the same time what they haveright like it like in early level campaigns vert, like is a Gobin justgoing to run away. Maybe I don't know so. Maybe that's what I'm tellingmyself as a DM, that I didn't change. Difficulty Sartings for themodule based on you players, but I think in general right it got everybodyexcited and, for example, you guys remember who was was it anybody that ran lostmines? I think definitely great n yeah? I was in that. Was it you turdn yeah? Ithink I was in that one. I don't know if I ran it. No, I don't know I'm talking about likewhen I dmed it the first time, yeah M, I'm pretty sure I was part of it aswell. Yeah. Well,...

...because a certain narrative changes andhow I explored it, we were able to get through the Krag Mahidout in onesession, which I wasn't able to do. The first time I damed it was that there's someone where I I was one of the like last standers,and there was the one bug bear left over in the in one of the mines orwhatever yeah yeah yeah. It was actually that bug. Bearencounter was really funny, because the drew thos playing did a thunderwave anddid fifteen an like kill, kill two goblins and dealt somuch damage to the bug. Bear in one turn that it wasn't able to get that much damageand, like, objectively speaking, a bug bear really crits every time it hitsright. So it's kind of nasty, but I'm going to leave that one as asurprise for players when they do get hit by the bug. Barleer first time, but, like I'm saying like it's just I don't know, I didn't change thedifficulty of the encounter in general. I just you know they didn't interactwith the wolves they kind of just let them be so. Okay, we don't have to runthat combat encounter. They managed to scare or pretend thatthere was a giant monster in the cavern that prevented certain goblins frommoving forward, and I don't know just in general as aDM. It was nice to see that I can run that kind of dungeon in one session andjust get through ith it, because I really wanted them to get to Fan Dellerby the end of the first encounter the first session, but I didn't want tochange how the encounters within the hieout were to facilitate that right.An kind of this works into what you were saying right, like I didn't, wantto make the goblins all of a sudden too stupid right. I just established a level ofstupid and kind of stuck with it yeah. I can't help but think like sorecently I rewatched community- and I keep thinking like you know, Abedin that show runs dunges an dragons, I think twice Orat the seasons and every time he's like super, like no seo the rules. That's it. I don't care if you've played before. If you know whatyou're doing you know this, this is what happens. That's it period and of story, andthat's kind of cool to to me because it's like Oh yeah, like real worldconsequences like if you do something there will besomething that happens to you, whereas, like I think I might tend to like fudgethings just to make it easier on people and I'm like yeah, maybe not so great. I remember I was actually watching thatepisode earlier today, because so doing probably the thing did ou watch, but one of the quotes of the vary anreally got to me because at the end of that episode, he they take too long arguing out front ofthe big bads Ily Burstin he's left through the back door. Yeah he's likesorry, that's it for the session and one of the players just goes like. Youcan't do that, like Youo, Wis and ending- and he goes- I don't know youanything like I create a world and that world has consequences. For example, ifyou stand out here, fighding each other for an hour arguing about who gets tokill the guy inside the tower, the guy inside the towers going to leavethrough the back door M- and I just remember, like we had one session onetime where these guys did not end up really, it was a one shop, butthey didn't end up arriving really at the destination they would have wantedto. They didn't they defeated the evil person, but they never really foundwhat they were. Looking for within this House that they were exploring and ts like we were packing up. I waslike Yep good session guys and somebody was like well what what should havehappened. Twas like you, have no idea. Ocant tell us like you gotta, I waslike. I absolutely can not tell you. You youve made choices that resulted innot figuring out. That's right, I was so mad an this. Wasn't you actually, this wasaanother session, but but it's like yeah the choices that you made have led usto this particular ending. Like this isn't a video game, you don't just getto go back and figure out what you did wrong and do it again like this was theadventure the adventures over, but going back to that to the divining theDMG segment and that last section of episodic versus long formed story. I'll disagree with you I'll say that ina one shot, if you're doing a like an episodic kind of thing, there should bea some sort of resolution right and like maybe maybe we'll disagree on that,but it's more so onlike the the playerreward as well. Right like I wouldn't want to slog through threehours of game to not kill the big baddy.

You know if we're continuing the storythat entices me to come back to the table, but if I know it's a one shotthand, okay, like I wouldn't do that. Personally, I don'tthink but again, like Juran's Qushion said like Everydm is different rightlike it's just what flavor of table do you want to have you know if we show upto brains table you know clearly these consequences are established and thatmight be way of playing that you really enjoyright MM. I think it's interesting it'sinteresting, especially because we play with each other, and that sounds reallySuper Sse, especially INE, especially since we run the ND gameswith one another from time to time. It's interesting tosee how our dming styles have evolved a little bit like I personally, like Ilike to do more of the improve style of running an adventure, because it's fun for me as a DM allright, but there is something to say aboutplanning and knowing what your campaign has to hold right. Yeah for sure I don't know it's hat's a really openquestion nd, I feel like we could talk about that. Sorry, Nsiyes s like everyother topic, onsupo manage yeah, but for now I think we've talkedenough about it. Thank you for answering guys. This has been critical thoughts ontriple advantage with Royal City Society. Again, thanks to all the listeners outthere, we just want to say you know, send us a message. Let us know what youthink and we'll try and respond to you and maybe put some of the stuff thatyou say on on our next podcast. So Yeah Sen is te DM at Royal City Society onour instagram account and we'll see you guys all next week, I'm Jordan, I'm Carlos and I'm still Britan man. I don't know about thes, sendingguys okay, you can just cun it ten. I willnot this O and love behold, Syou guys in a coupleof days.

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