This week has been a non-play week. So I’ve been prepping for next week and what Tuesday evening will bring. I think I’ve reached a small level of understanding with Pathfinder. A small, insignificant level of understanding.

I think I know how basic combat works

That’s right, I think I’ve figured how basic combat works. It’s taken a long time and the journey to this moment of clarity has been hard, and is still tainted with a huge lack of understanding. When I say basic combat, I’m saying that I get everyone to roll for initiative, swing their weapons, loose some arrows, cast some spells, move around a bit 0 I think I understand this now.

What I perhaps don’t understand so well is how critical levels of damage are figured out when 1) a character scores a natural 20 on d20 roll and 2) manages to confirm a critical hit – how to figure out from there the extra damage that is done. It’s no that easy to interpret from the rule book.

Pathfinder fighter diary entry 6 Moving the story on

The last play session was left on a cliffhanger with an unconscious half-orc lying at at the feet of the player characters, having just burst into the library of the mayor they were talking with. So, today I’ve been figuring out where to move them all on once the session on Tuesday starts.

Due to figuring out combat just that bit more, I’m hoping to have a few combat encounters as well as some more story driving moments, though the combat I’m planning won’t be happening just because I’ve figured out how to do it. The combat will be necessary exposition, giving them greater insight into the effects of the earthquake that occurred at the beginning of the last session.

Sure, combat would be a basic way to help everyone level-up, but I’m not awarding experience based on just combat encounters. I’m handing out experience based on how they deal with non-combat situations as well.

Trying not to worry about…

If there’s one thing that the last session reminded me of, it was improvisation tasks in theatre class. I haven’t wanted to be too pushy with where the player characters will go and what they’ll do, but of course that means being able to think on my feet. So I’m getting into the habit now of having bits and pieces of material to draw on if they need to suddenly talk to someone or something I haven’t planned for.

I’m also using Dingle’s Games  to help me create NPCs and monsters for encounters, so that I can spend more time on ensuring story elements are in place.