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Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 7:22 am

How do you play Castles and Crusades at the table?
1 - Complete theater of the mind.
2 - Theater of the mind and occasionally putting some dice down to show where you're at.
3 - Using the best method as it makes warranted. A fair combination of both.
4 - Vast majority of encounters take place on the battle mat, markers, miniatures, etc.
5 - The level of "All Out". There's miniatures, terrain, trees, DwarvenForge, a flat screen monitor, a projector, etc.

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 11:46 am

5, with sound
https://goo.gl/photos/NgRv1ZN4PzmjyRLZ6

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 11:55 am

Whoah! Very nice!

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 12:39 pm

My face to face gaming is a solid 3. I never veer all the way to a 5. I try to push to go with a 1 (theater of the mind) as much as possible for expediency's sake. My GM style is largely improvisational, so "all out" normally isn't an option.

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 1:17 pm

Wouldn't "All Out" be more like renting a large warehouse, setting up the dungeon, and then LARPing the whole thing? ROFL

I'm a #4 myself. Never had the storage or gaming space for 5.

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 7:20 pm

Somewhere between 3 and 4.

R-

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 8:47 pm

4 to 5, depending on what resources I am wanting to use for that sessions encounters. I haven't ran a face to face game, aside from Cons, for a couple of years now. So my youngest son makes more use of my projector than I do.

Re: Playing at the Table

Fri May 11, 2018 11:57 pm

#3 I suppose as it is both all of them and the most accurate. I prefer #1 but there are times #2 makes sense. I would go #5 if anyone ever came to my house, but they don't, so they don't get that treatment. I actually dislike #4; for some reason, it takes me completely out of the game and turns into a "skirmish."

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 12:28 am

#1: Paper, dice, pencils, and the core book.

#4 makes it a board game.

#5 makes it a video game.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 12:43 am

Baldur's Gate Enhanced Edition, Siege of Dragonspear

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 1:29 am

Interesting. I was expecting a lot more 1-3 responses.
At one point, the group I played with did 2nd Ed Combat & Tactics.
It raised me up to a 4. Slowly I'm moving towards a 4-5 range. 5 for bigger battles, etc.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 1:31 am

Peter wrote:#1: Paper, dice, pencils, and the core book.

#4 makes it a board game.

#5 makes it a video game.


I've seen a lot of board game movements where players are counting and calculating the best approach, etc. If they do it more than twice, I'm typically giving the "you're wasting time" look. Very close to metagaming.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 2:25 am

Started out gaming in 1981 and we played 1 for several years, gradually adding minis. When we played a lot of MERP in the 1990s we went more towards minis because several of the players were new and most ran multiple PCs. So we eventually got to the 3-4 level where I stayed for many years. Later, one of our gamers was a professional artist and he could bust out the battle mat and sketch encounters really well. Then I moved away and bequeathed my large mini collection to the group. So now I'm back to 1-2 , where I'll most likely stay unless we start playing more to justify buying minis again.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 3:40 am

Started with just imagination in very late '76 during lunch hour in the school library and the three little white books. :) Have done chits or mini's since '79 and later. Found it was easier to keep people 'honest' in where their PCs were at in the room and what they could do when. I disagree about their use turning it into a bored..sorry...board...game when only used for combat encounters. Simply due to the prevalence of miniatures and such in tabletop wargames such as full thrust, starmada, micro armor, and napoleonics which are more modeled simulations. #5 is more of a board game simulation in by presenting a fixed field (the dungeon model) you automatically have a limited field like a game board...and no real mystery on the size of where you are exploring. But that's how I see it.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 4:16 pm

I just use electronics to portray the battle field and the mini's, because that is far easier than actually setting up all the physical components, and then putting them away. Plus I don't need to worry about someone breaking any of my painted mini's. Plus digital assets are far cheaper and easier to come by than the physical assets. Storage is on the microscopic level, instead of the boxes and shelves level as well.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 12, 2018 5:19 pm

I guess #3 .. Once we had miniatures (sometime in the early 80's) we used it for marching order. Combat was verbal. Eventually there would be a rough layout of Monster figures (or dice or whatever). Very rare their would be a "battle mat", if fact I think 2 or 3 times, the temple of the Dragon where the party threw down vs Timat is one, it's hand drawn on a huge piece of graph paper - because, you know, breath weapons are AOE :)

Re: Playing at the Table

Sun May 13, 2018 1:29 am

Mostly 3, but sometimes 4 when there is a lot going on.

-Fizz

Re: Playing at the Table

Sun May 13, 2018 2:40 am

Somewhere between 3 & 4. I find mapping the area helps me better describe what's going on (plus I just really get into maps). I use the battle map that came with the Pathfinder beginner's box and some dry erase markers (the really day glow ones). We really don't have a bunch of mini's, and definitely not for all the monsters, so I usually resort to "Theater of the Mind" for that that part, using dice if the players want to get a little tactical. Besides, I'm trying to describe the monsters by their physical appearance, instead of just saying 'Inside the room are 3 orcs.'

Re: Playing at the Table

Sun May 13, 2018 2:56 am

4 with a chalk board, but my new crew ALL have 3D printers.... the end is near old men... 5 is going to need a 6 soon!

Re: Playing at the Table

Sun May 13, 2018 2:58 am

Captain_K wrote:4 with a chalk board, but my new crew ALL have 3D printers.... the end is near old men... 5 is going to need a 6 soon!

Yeah, I've had one for close to 2 years. Haven't even set it up and made anything.

Re: Playing at the Table

Mon May 14, 2018 3:15 am

for me, back in the day, it was solid 3.

Now today, DMing for my girls it slides between 2 & 3.

Re: Playing at the Table

Mon May 14, 2018 11:54 pm

From 3 to 4 for me most of the time.

Re: Playing at the Table

Tue May 15, 2018 12:57 pm

I'm at a 3.

For quite a lot of the combats I go completely Theatre of the Mind. If I want to make the battle seem more significant or there's some cool tactical stuff I'd like to throw in for fun, then I tend to pull or maps or terrain. There is a fairly high correlation between the battle's significance / thematic coolness and whether I use props. A skirmish with goblins? No need for props. The final boss battle between the Death Knight and a horde of undead minions on a series of islands floating in the Astral Plane? Get me some props! It'll be fun!

I'm a big believer in the right tool for the job.

Re: Playing at the Table

Wed May 16, 2018 8:19 pm

I'm still at level 3, with leanings toward 2.

I just ran a game this past weekend at a convention, and I had the battle mat out and dice, markers, etc. None of the players seemed interested in using those devices and wanted theater of the mind. I personally don't see that all that much any more, but it was sort of refreshing, especially for a convention game.

~O

Re: Playing at the Table

Thu May 17, 2018 10:07 pm

Omote wrote:I'm still at level 3, with leanings toward 2.

I just ran a game this past weekend at a convention, and I had the battle mat out and dice, markers, etc. None of the players seemed interested in using those devices and wanted theater of the mind. I personally don't see that all that much any more, but it was sort of refreshing, especially for a convention game.

~O


I was surprised at the lack of miniatures and the use of miniatures at GaryCon. Even GenCon, most organized play rarely are miniatures used, IMO.

Re: Playing at the Table

Sat May 19, 2018 1:01 pm

So much time and money into buying and painting... listening to a radio show is great fun and a great story teller lets you paint in your mind's eye a great show.. but there's still nothing wrong with a movie with great special effects!

So I like the mini use.. it adds something plus with 6 PC and 12 little monsters its hard to recall where everything is....
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