How do you plan your gaming sessions to incorporate DF

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derekjr
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Re: How do you plan your gaming sessions to incorporate DF

Post by derekjr » Mon Jul 17, 2017 2:04 pm

Thank you both for the detailed responses!

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HeroQuestFrance
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Re: How do you plan your gaming sessions to incorporate DF

Post by HeroQuestFrance » Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:30 am

I play several game systems with different groups.
So mainly it are boardgame including miniatures.
(HeroQuest (the remaster), Advanced Heroquest, HeroQuest 25TH and Descent 2)

The maps including the bestiary, the traps, the events & the treasures are always done in advance.
(dungeon crawl rulezzzz :lol: )
I prepare rooms and I place it on a strong cardboard. (I cut to the size of the room/corridor)
I place it under the table (I have some shelves just below hidden by the sheet).
When the heroes are entering a new place or enter the line of sight of something new, I just take the new section (with care) and place it on the table. I win time by doing this and the players have always the surprise of what's behind the door. (huge place or a tiny closet)

I have one gaming room with 2 tables : one large (2m/1m20) where we play the scenario.
I own a second mobile table (1m50/1m20) on which I use to put a town/village with some shops, a market, their house and a tavern/inn where players can rest, buy/sell gear, potions, take new adventures, deposit items etc.
It's in a corner of the room close tpo the fridge. (yeah beer are important, ice cream more)
I just move it by convenience.
Sometimes it can happen the town is attacked and it can also can be used as the main table.

I try to use the 3D scenery a maximum for the most wanted games. The only bad point to me are the walls on the squares. I hate it. You lose space and it doesn't suit perfectly to the main game systems I use.
I avoid the use of the curved or diagonal corners for instance.

Gargs454
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Re: How do you plan your gaming sessions to incorporate DF

Post by Gargs454 » Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:36 pm

Welcome to the forum!

I'm not a veteran DF user, but I am a long time GM and I can tell you how I plan to use my DF stuff.

In general, I don't map out things in advance unless I am reasonably certain that it will be used in actual gameplay that session. So in your village example, if the party is just passing through town, possibly resupplying but otherwise there's no real intention of having an encounter in the village, then I don't see the need to construct said village for that session. So if the village is just there to provide a couple of NPCs and maybe serve as a jumping off point for the adventure du jour, then there isn't a need to build it -- especially since you anticipate the party leaving the village and going to the actual adventure site relatively soon.

That said, I do see where the village could be useful as a constructed space. There are numerous adventures out there that take place in a village or that at least have notable encounters in one. You can then use the CBS system to create the assorted homes and shops in the area of said encounter(s). This gives a greater sense of realism, while also allowing for more dynamic gameplay as your players (and your NPCs) look for avenues of escape, cover, ambush, etc. I don't know how many times I've mapped out a basic village square on a wet erase mat and then have a player ask "Is there anywhere I can take cover while still getting an angle on the square? How about high ground?" etc. Usually this results in "Uhhhh, sure, you can find a cart to take cover behind over here, and Fred, you can probably climb up atop this building there." With a good collection of DF (and other accessories) you can actually have all of that out there already.

As for dungeons, yeah I do anticipate some pre-building -- especially with the new terrain trays that will make that even easier (for those of us that travel or who don't want it on the table). As for covering it, that kind of depends on your group. My current group is a bunch of long, long time players (as in going back to the early days of TSR and the like) and a couple in particular were big in the early days of RPGA, etc. The point? They are very good about not letting player knowledge mix with character knowledge. On the other hand, I've had other players who even if I describe the dungeon as being magically dark, defeating even their dark vision and magical lanterns, etc., would never enter the hallway that had Doomroller perched on the end because they can't separate player knowledge from character knowledge. For a group like that I would either a) build it as it goes (and likely this won't be much slower than using a wet-erase map) or b) simply cover the dungeon with a towel, sheet, whatever and reveal as I go.

derekjr
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How do you plan your gaming sessions to incorporate DF

Post by derekjr » Fri Jul 14, 2017 1:57 pm

I'm relatively new to D&D, new to DF, love the idea of it, love the product, spent way too much on KS5 :D I have lots of questions.

I have the kind of personality that wants to buy EVERYTHING, but also have this skepticism about how much I will actually use the tiles. When I see large setups -- full dungeons, towns, etc. How do you prepare those things with all the uncertainty of what players will choose to do? Say you have an entire village laid out. Are you hoping they will spend the entire session there? If they're just going to be RP-ing in town, what do the tiles actually add to that? Do most people who do that just have enough living space to leave it setup for a long time?

My space is very limited, so I just pre-build boss rooms or unique locations for special moments of the week. Encounters that I know will definitely happen. Yet even if I had more room, I struggle to see the use of a fully-realized, sprawling location in actual gameplay. If they're crawling through a large dungeon, don't they see you've built something hidden over there -- ruining the mystery -- even if you have it covered? Do you have a blueprint laid out, and build it as they go? can't see my players having the patience for that! :lol:

I have a similar misgiving about the tiles making every dungeon/cave/whathaveyou feel similar. Do your players express any fatigue about a dungeon of Dwarven make looking architecturally the same as a dungeon under a human castle? I can see how to make a unique layout with all the varied pieces, but they will always be brick dungeons, and damp-walled caverns, no? I'd be excited to see different styles in the future, like the Shrine of Sysuul.

I started rambling there, but I'm just looking for thoughts and tips from hardcore DF users/collectors about these issues. Or if they're not issues at all for you :)

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