D&D WITH ERIC THE DM #32: Let's Fight!
Eric the DM
Salutations adventurers far and near! Welcome back! Come sit by my fire and I’ll pour you a warm glass of mulled wine. I want to hear about all of your adventures! What new monsters have you vanquished? What new treasures have you sought? It looks like you have been busy!
I myself have been battling terrifying monsters in the outer realms. Luckily, like you I don’t travel alone! My adventuring party always backs me up when its time to head into battle!
Battle is a very big part of tabletop gaming! It punctuates adventures with action and allows us each to show off our special skills! Today I thought we might go over some tips to help prepare you for battle!
From the moment your DM says, “Roll Initiative” you know you are in for a fight. How can you be best prepared for this? What can you do to make yourself a stronger person in battle? Well there are a few things you can do to give yourself an edge!
First really know your character. I have mentioned before that even for seasoned players it can be helpful to review your entire character sheet before each game. Read all your spells, skills, items, stats, etc. and have them fresh in your mind. Knowing what you can do without having to search for it every time can really help you out!
Spend some time between games thinking about possible scenarios and how your character will react. What would I do if I was surrounded? What would I do if I was caught one on one with a strong enemy? What if I saw a friend in this situation? By thinking thru these scenarios ahead of time you can have an idea of what you will really do when it arises!
It can also be fun to go over these scenarios with your friends! By talking about things together you can create cunning and devastating Combo Attacks that you do together! What spells do you have that can complement a warrior’s strike? What item do you have that you can use to powerup a rogue’s backstab? Tabletop gaming is meant to be played with a group and once you start getting into it you may be surprised how many cool ways you and your friends can combine your skills and abilities to make them stronger and more deadly!
It can also be helpful to think about (and talk about) past battles. What worked well? What didn’t? If a situation went well what can you do to repeat that success? If it didn’t go so well what COULD you have done to make it better and what will you do next time? Learning from the past is a great way to prepare for the future! (This is true in real life too!)
Pat attention to you DM and learn how they tell the story. Clever DM’s will usually give you plenty of hints about what is to come. A stray word from and NPC, or some elaborate graffiti scrawled onto a wall may be just the clue your DM is giving you about some plot point coming soon! If you become involved in the story and listen to your DM you might be able to predict when a battle is approaching and take actions to ready yourself!
Another very important thing to learn is how to choose your battles. Good DM’s wont usually throw things at you just to try and kill you. But there will probably be times in your story when you come up against enemies that are too strong for you and your group to face. Know when to retreat! Not only should you know when to retreat but you should have a plan to do so. This is another place that it will be helpful to talk to your fellow adventurers! Does your wizard have a smoke screen they can throw up to hide your escape? Does your rogue have a flash bomb they can use to blind your enemies while you run away? Work out these scenarios with your friends as well and when you need to make a quick getaway you will do so gracefully.
What are some things you do to prepare for battle? Do you have tips and tricks of your own? Let us know! We always want to hear from you! Leave some comments below and tell us what you think!
OK adventurers all this talk of battle has got me ready to jump back into the action! Let get out there and fight the good fight! I’ll see you again soon adventurers! Stay safe out there and keep rolling those dice!