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Jan 21, 2015
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Hey all

So I wanna get my kids into D&D, though I've never played myself

My son is 11 and of course loves video games too much, I'm hoping to nurture his non-e imagination. My daughter is creative and is interested via watching 'Stranger Things', she might make a really great DM one day if she digs it.

I thought it would be a good option to spend more time with the kids, and maybe get them into something else non-electronic.

So I got this Starter Set which is supposed to be genius, and I've been going through it and it does appear to be brilliantly put together. I am planning to DM, but the more I look into it the more it seems I have to learn before ready to launch a fun campaign.

I've learned a lot but have a bunch of things I don't understand that I can't seem to find in the rulebook.

Is anyone here familiar with D&D? If so, anyone willing to help a total noob out with some questions to help me prepare?

Thanks!
 
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Rambo John J

Formerly 'Inside Job'
First 100
Jan 17, 2015
43,312
48,474
played it on lunch break a few times in grade school
was fun to learn some of the stuff

never fully understood it though

Liked the cool Dice/Die
 
Jan 21, 2015
3,248
6,026
To be honest I am quite overwhelmed at what a fantastic system it is, I can see how big it can get and how much fun

-So Creative!! There is genuine story writing/story telling here, apparently hundreds of campaigns out there crafted together with skill. Or if you get good you can make your own. Whole worlds, histories, maps, legends, etc etc etc It must go deep, man. Plus all the artwork! So much artwork, what a world for creative people to dive into, my god

I remember learning to draw as a teen studying D&D artwork, but I never actually played the game
 
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Jan 21, 2015
3,248
6,026
For anyone willing to help me out with a few learning curves, I offer a custom illustration of your D&D character in exchange.
 

maurice

Posting Machine
Oct 21, 2015
1,344
2,267
My kids are 12 and 8, and I recently bought the 5e starter set (pictured above) to give them an activity that isn't electronic or sports. So far, so good. Before this, I hadn't played since the 1980s. Millennials have jumped all over D&D in the past couple of years, and it's far nerdier now than it was then. When I was a kid, it was just another boy thing to do, like playing football and riding bikes. We'd often do all 3 in a single Sunday.

My general advice is to not worry too much about the rules. Use the pre-generated characters that came in the box. That will take them up to level 5. Just focus on telling an improvisational story based on the broad outline in the Lost Mines module. The goal of the game is to tell a fun and interactive story, not to "win" and certainly not to kill everything you see. What else do you want to know?
 
Jan 21, 2015
3,248
6,026
My kids are 12 and 8, and I recently bought the 5e starter set (pictured above) to give them an activity that isn't electronic or sports. So far, so good. Before this, I hadn't played since the 1980s. Millennials have jumped all over D&D in the past couple of years, and it's far nerdier now than it was then. When I was a kid, it was just another boy thing to do, like playing football and riding bikes. We'd often do all 3 in a single Sunday.

My general advice is to not worry too much about the rules. Use the pre-generated characters that came in the box. That will take them up to level 5. Just focus on telling an improvisational story based on the broad outline in the Lost Mines module. The goal of the game is to tell a fun and interactive story, not to "win" and certainly not to kill everything you see. What else do you want to know?
Wow thanks that's great man.

here are some noob questions to start:

1. what do the parts circled in green here mean? +4 to hit? does that mean this creature has to roll 4 HIGHER than a player's AC to hit?
And what does Hit: 5 mean? I'm guessing the (1d6+2) is what to roll for damage if it hits.


2. What happens if the party splits up? Is this possible or they have to stay together?


3. It seems so easy for players to get killed (?) that first battle with the goblins or whatever, I was attempting to do the math and even 1 good hit can seriously fuck up a player's hit points. How do you deal with that? Let them die? Lots of saving throws? Healing from other players?

That's it for now, I hope to figure out as much on my own but sometimes I just can't find certain answers


If you're willing to follow through with more noob questions I'll make illustrations for both your kids' characters :D


PS: sounds like a great childhood
 
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maurice

Posting Machine
Oct 21, 2015
1,344
2,267
1. +4 to hit?

Roll d20 and add 4. If the total matches or exceeds the targeted player's AC, then the goblin hits.

what does Hit: 5 mean? I'm guessing the (1d6+2) is what to roll for damage if it hits.

5 is approximately the average damage a goblin causes, which the DM can use if he doesn't feel like rolling. Otherwise, yes roll a d6 and add 2 to determine damage caused.


2. What happens if the party splits up? Is this possible or they have to stay together?

The game is completely open ended. The players can try to do literally anything. The DM determines the outcome. It's harder for the DM if they split up and usually harder for the players. Much easier to die if you don't stay together.

3. It seems so easy for players to get killed (?) that first battle with the goblins

1st level characters are extremely glassy, but they'll level up quickly. The starter set is designed to teach a variety of game mechanics, and one of them is character death. Best to teach that at 1st level before the players are emotionally invested in their characters. If the players don't spot signs of the obvious ambush, a couple of characters definitely could die (which also teaches them not to rush in and to look out for ambushes). Thing is, death is rarely immediate in the game. A player can't go below zero HP. They simply fall unconscious and, if you heal or otherwise tend to them right away, they almost certainly will survive. It's important to have a healer in the group, usually the cleric. Soon they will get potions of healing. Worst case scenario, the DM can improvise. For example, the surviving characters can load the unconscious bodies onto the wagon and rush them into town screaming for help. Assume that the priestess at the shrine is essentially a cleric who will heal them. For another example, if the party is getting lit up like a Christmas tree, goblins are dumb and might try something dumb like foregoing their attack turn to loot the unconscious character's body. At the end of the game session, you can point out a couple of things that the beginner players could have done differently, but mostly let them learn to role play organically.

4. why is there a (2d6) next to the Goblin's hit points (7)?

Pretty much the same as the damage answer above. 7 is the average number of HP a goblin has, but there can by variation when it makes sense. 2d6 gives you the general range, which the DM can roll or, more typically, just decide based on the circumstances. 2 goblins in a generic encounter? Just give them 7 HP. Goblin boss? Feel free to exceed the range and give him 15 HP. Fighting a dramatic scene against a horde of goblins? Give them 2 HP each. The DM is god and the only firm guideline is to make it fun for the players.

Along the same lines, think about how you want to use the NPCs. When I ran this with my kids, Sildar and some others were recurring characters who developed personalities. The game has 3 main components: fighting, investigation, and social interaction. NPCs can be involved in all 3, but they're the main focus of the 3rd one.
 
Jan 21, 2015
3,248
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^^ amazing, thank you!!

Seems like creativity and keeping things flowing is the key, no need to reference every rule all the time
 
Jan 21, 2015
3,248
6,026
Any tips for that specific starter set in terms of story/characters that you found works better or worse?

This is great, maybe this weeked
 

maurice

Posting Machine
Oct 21, 2015
1,344
2,267
There are a few that you will certainly use, so you might as well start thinking about their personalities now. It sometimes help to match them up with famous characters in TV / movies / books. The back story for the town is that it was wiped out years ago but is being rebuilt because there's ore in them thar hills, so you could make it like a Wild West town or one of the settlements in Walking Dead, for example. Whatever you'd enjoy playing.

Gundren Rockseeker: He's involved before the game even begins. The Rockseeker brothers are the most ambitious of the miners, looking to maximize profits by obtaining much more than simple ore at great personal risk. They're basically high-risk, high-reward entrepreneurs, but they're also dwarfs so not exactly white collar types. More like adventurers who travelled far from home to make a big profit, which matches up well with most parties who are doing essentially the same thing.

Sildar Hallwinter: Also involved before the game begins. He's the only "hero" in the area before the characters arrive, but he's past his prime. Everybody in town looks up to him, but will their opinion change when they find out that he got captured by fucking goblins? Will the party usurp his role in the town? (probably) How will he react to that? Generous mentor or grouchy old dude? I killed him off in dramatic fashion at the end of the campaign to put over the green dragon and show the party that the encounter was extremely deadly. This also had the effect of letting the party replace him as town heroes.

Harbin Wester: The dude in charge of the town and the primary person giving them missions. I told my kids that he was "the mayor." What kind of leader do you think he should be? I played him as being in WAY over his head and in serious need of help from the characters. The town has no walls and no police force, so they're sitting ducks for pretty much any bad guy. On a long enough timeline, he probably will be deposed by a more competent person like Halia Thornton or the Redbrand leader or even a party member. I may eventually have the townspeople vote him out of office and replace him with another character, like Daran Edermath.

Various Boss Villains: IMO, they're all kind of flat, but maybe you can spice them up more than I did. I pretty much only got interesting use out of the Doppelgangers, which are inherently full of potential. I probably could've done more with the Dragon Cultists. Working on that now.

The rest should emerge organically based on the players' decisions and character backgrounds. Did they need Sister Garaele to heal them, as in my example above? Well she's going to want something in return, and what she wants is spelled out in the module. That mission also involves little or no combat, and will help the players level up without the risk of dying. If somebody is playing the dwarf cleric, then he was hired because he's the Rockseeker brothers' cousin and will want to rescue them. Maybe one of the fighters got the job because he's Sildar's nephew. Maybe the wizard worships the same deity as the town priestess. Maybe the Rogue is related to Qelline Alderleaf or maybe he's a former Redbrand or a member of Halia's secret organization who wants to help her take over the Redbrands and/or usurp Harbin. Whatever you think will enhance the game.

Like I said before, D&D has really taken off with Millenials, so there are a ton of helpful resources on Reddit, Youtube, etc.
 

Onetrickpony

Stay gold
Nov 21, 2016
13,658
31,032
I haven’t played dnd since I was a teenager but I got heavy into board games a while back and now have a weekly game going for Gloomhaven. It’s basically dnd without a dungeon master. It’s ridiculously fun and well designed. I play with my 11 year old son and a few friends.

Also, mechs vs minions is amazing and well worth the 75 bucks.

Here’s a thread I made with pictures of both.

General - Board Game
 
Jan 21, 2015
3,248
6,026
This is great
There are a few that you will certainly use, so you might as well start thinking about their personalities now. It sometimes help to match them up with famous characters in TV / movies / books. The back story for the town is that it was wiped out years ago but is being rebuilt because there's ore in them thar hills, so you could make it like a Wild West town or one of the settlements in Walking Dead, for example. Whatever you'd enjoy playing.

Gundren Rockseeker: He's involved before the game even begins. The Rockseeker brothers are the most ambitious of the miners, looking to maximize profits by obtaining much more than simple ore at great personal risk. They're basically high-risk, high-reward entrepreneurs, but they're also dwarfs so not exactly white collar types. More like adventurers who travelled far from home to make a big profit, which matches up well with most parties who are doing essentially the same thing.

Sildar Hallwinter: Also involved before the game begins. He's the only "hero" in the area before the characters arrive, but he's past his prime. Everybody in town looks up to him, but will their opinion change when they find out that he got captured by fucking goblins? Will the party usurp his role in the town? (probably) How will he react to that? Generous mentor or grouchy old dude? I killed him off in dramatic fashion at the end of the campaign to put over the green dragon and show the party that the encounter was extremely deadly. This also had the effect of letting the party replace him as town heroes.

Harbin Wester: The dude in charge of the town and the primary person giving them missions. I told my kids that he was "the mayor." What kind of leader do you think he should be? I played him as being in WAY over his head and in serious need of help from the characters. The town has no walls and no police force, so they're sitting ducks for pretty much any bad guy. On a long enough timeline, he probably will be deposed by a more competent person like Halia Thornton or the Redbrand leader or even a party member. I may eventually have the townspeople vote him out of office and replace him with another character, like Daran Edermath.

Various Boss Villains: IMO, they're all kind of flat, but maybe you can spice them up more than I did. I pretty much only got interesting use out of the Doppelgangers, which are inherently full of potential. I probably could've done more with the Dragon Cultists. Working on that now.

The rest should emerge organically based on the players' decisions and character backgrounds. Did they need Sister Garaele to heal them, as in my example above? Well she's going to want something in return, and what she wants is spelled out in the module. That mission also involves little or no combat, and will help the players level up without the risk of dying. If somebody is playing the dwarf cleric, then he was hired because he's the Rockseeker brothers' cousin and will want to rescue them. Maybe one of the fighters got the job because he's Sildar's nephew. Maybe the wizard worships the same deity as the town priestess. Maybe the Rogue is related to Qelline Alderleaf or maybe he's a former Redbrand or a member of Halia's secret organization who wants to help her take over the Redbrands and/or usurp Harbin. Whatever you think will enhance the game.

Like I said before, D&D has really taken off with Millenials, so there are a ton of helpful resources on Reddit, Youtube, etc.
This is GREAT! Thanks tons man

Send me bios of your kids' characters, I will make em some drawings :D
 
Nov 21, 2015
6,848
9,463
Hey all

So I wanna get my kids into D&D, though I've never played myself

My son is 11 and of course loves video games too much, I'm hoping to nurture his non-e imagination. My daughter is creative and is interested via watching 'Stranger Things', she might make a really great DM one day if she digs it.

I thought it would be a good option to spend more time with the kids, and maybe get them into something else non-electronic.

So I got this Starter Set which is supposed to be genius, and I've been going through it and it does appear to be brilliantly put together. I am planning to DM, but the more I look into it the more it seems I have to learn before ready to launch a fun campaign.

I've learned a lot but have a bunch of things I don't understand that I can't seem to find in the rulebook.

Is anyone here familiar with D&D? If so, anyone willing to help a total noob out with some questions to help me prepare?

Thanks!
Man I haven't played D&D in years. I was really into it when I was a kid too
 

maurice

Posting Machine
Oct 21, 2015
1,344
2,267
With the 5th edition rules taking off, now is a good time to jump back in. I wasn't expecting to enjoy it this much.

Assassins are crazy powerful in 5e. You can consistently sneak around to the back rank while the fighters are tanking and then backstab the boss for something like 8d6 damage at level 3. Or, alternatively, stand in the back rank yourself and cause the same massive damage by sniping anybody who is engaged with another party member.
 

Ryann Von Doom

The Man
Jan 28, 2015
5,843
6,617
If you want to keep them off drugs introduce them to warhammer fantasy battles and warhammer 40k.. They'll forever be too poor to do drugs. Will also strengthen bonds when you all are painting minis together.
 

Leigh

Professional Fighter
Moderator
Pro Fighter
Jan 26, 2015
10,130
19,112
I played a bit as a kid. Oriental adventures had ninjas and samurais. maurice @maurice has you covered