Season 2, Episode 6

This episode focuses on the Delve game format, a concept that has been pushed forward by DND 4th edition but is good for any gaming system.  The idea is to have a combat-only, role playing-lite three-battle night that focuses on education for new players, ground-breaking for experienced players, solid experience for new DM's and fun for everyone.

This was the episode that we recorded 1.5 hours of content for only to lose half of it to some sort of repeatable microphone driver setting in our recording software.  We included some of our content that wasn't hosed up in the outtakes.  The first outtake is what our first try at S2E6 sounded like.  For an hour.

Our Top 10 list of Worst Character Concepts headlines the podcast, all inspired by actual characters we've had to DM at our tables.  (False.)

Show notes:

  • The ID DM's series No Assembly Required at http://theiddm.wordpress.com
    • Don't miss Chad's Orcus 3:16 joke.  Begin the engines of Photoshop now.
  • We also mention that DND5 is coming out as a sidenote.  It's like two years away people.  Stop arguing.  Muy unexcite.
  • Thanks for the #FF's.  Sorry for the deception about the Fondus Fellatigellinate stuff.

A summary of our tips on prepping and running a Delve.  Listen to the whole podcast for more, and for lots of ideas on how to explore the Delve as a one-night gaming concept.

  • The Three M's of a Delve: map, monsters, mechanic
    • The map - make sure you use diverse terrain to open up melee and ranged characters.
    • The monsters - reskin, use minions, use variety
    • The mechanic - prevents everyone from just doing math and allowing creativity.
  • Be sure to give opportunity for every character type to succeed - so include an opportunity for the minion-sweeper but also for the ranger who specializes in focusing on one-target.   Don't crowd the characters, have a varied map type.
  • Beware of breeding dungeon crawlers - make sure they know that a Delve isn’t what DND is. DND is a highly social, interactive experience that is a lot more than pure combat.
  • Failure in a campaign is story. Failure in a delve can be really frustrating.
  • Take it easy on the role-playing with n00bs- that's why combat-only Delves are a great intro. 
After a jaunty bumper from The Kobolds, the second half of the main topic is ideas about extending and being more creative with your Delves.
  • Seasonal (Dark Kringle), news-related (Qaddafi) or the Roadhouse Delve are popular successes for William.  (All in the high fantasy genre of course.)
  • Tell a short story with the Delve.
  • Combat-skill challenge-Combat instead of Combat x 3.
  • Invite your players to describe things creatively, "more than a swing and a miss".  Then say "yes, and."
  • Insist players play something new.  (You heard Michael email about this in the last episode.)
  • Have confidence to pull this stuff off.
Gadgets of the Podcast:
Big Thanks:

For music, once again big thanks to the Diablo String Orchestra and The Kobolds! Back to our normal format in S2E6.   A big thanks to Dubyawife, who gave us lots of insight, tips and content for Delving.  She's a pro.  Also big thanks to super-fan Joshua Bentley, who provided some NEW voice work for us.  We are blown away to receive his enthusiasm and support!  We welcome him and everyone else to give us some home-made voice work, especially Intros to the Gadgets of the Podcast, which as we have proven time and time again, we suck at.

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