Thoughts about my D&D game:

I am done with the individual xp experiment. Pretty sure I am going with static xp so we don’t have spreads of 10% or more. Which I guess kills the incentive for the players to do their IC posts, but I’ll trade that in for “no party level gap.”
I’m not really sure how to deal with some of the game’s problems… We have such a short play time, the scenario I put together for the first two sessions just took 6 or 7.
The problems I’m seeing are:
We’ve drifted from starting at 7 to starting closer to 8:30 or 9. That foreshortens the pre-game social time which tends to make it leak into game time making everyone more distractable.
The shorter sessions mean that we tend to only have one or possibly two encounters a night, which causes them to tend toward set-piece fights instead of smaller fights and social encounters, and the small number of encounters per night means that if, from a fun standpoint, if an encounter doesn’t go well, there is no real chance of fixing the session.

We are suffering from a lot of analysis paralysis as the party tries to find ways to take only actions that are optimally likely to succeed. Or even worse “this is the most likely thing to succeed, so I will do it instead of the other things that are less likely, and I will do it over and over again” because that analysis doesn’t change from round to round.

The current party mix is Debuff Bard/Rogue/Control+Tank Fighter/Combat Priest/Warlock/Barbarian (in theory)

The debuff bard means I really really have to keep track of (and include) more creatures that speak her language since outward facing language requiring abilities work less often than the inward ones.

We seldom have more than 4 players, and never the barbarian (I miss having the barbarian).

That means that the rogue is the primary damage dealer absent the barbarian. The fighter doesn’t do a lot of damage unbuffed, though he is tanking pretty well, he tends not to use his control abilities unless the situation is optimal.

I’d like to get the party moving around a bit more in combat. That probably means more active battle fields and opponents that adopt wolf pack tactics on occasion.

I’m also facing the problem that all of the grid based editions of D&D have. My party tends to try and break things into round by round grid actions, even out of combat. (Well, social is pretty good, but chases and skill challenges and such are still a problem. The answer, I think, is doing more of that sort of thing.)

Getting complaints about lack of social stuff, but a lot of that is the small number of encounters a night. The current adventure had 3 scenes.

“Get to town and stop the monsters attacking the people outside the walls.”

“Go into the keep and help save the guards outside the inner walls escape the Destrachan”

“Stop the Destrachan.”

Scene 1 was combatty with some talking and a bunch of opponents who were susceptible to the bard and the warlock’s powers.
Scene 2 was a skill challenge that had some people doing tactical things and some doing social things (going out and sneaking around and motivating groups of trapped people to get them to safety)

Scene 3 was a boss fight. 

In a single session, all of that would have been a good mix. It took 3 and a half sessions to do over 5 weeks. Didn’t feel like a mix at all.

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