UPDATES, RULE CHANGES, ETC.

RULE CHANGE (9/28/17)

In reviewing the Players' Handbook, I realized I have been doing critical hit damage incorrectly. I was using maximum possible damage for critical hits, but the rule is actually to double the damage die rolled. I will be using the RAW from now on.

UPDATE (9/28/17)

I started using Initiative cards last session. The cards hang over the edge of my DM screen and allow the players (and me) to see the Initiative order so that players can anticipate their turn and think about what actions they want to take. Although we only had 3 players at the last game, I think it did speed up the process. I will be really interested to see how it works this Friday (September 29th) with almost everyone there.

CONTEST

I know we have unofficially been doing this for some time, but I'd like to officially announce the "Storm King's Thunder Weird Snack Flavour Contest". I will award an Inspiration point to the person who brings the weirdest (voted on by the group) snack. I have brought some chips from Canada, so consider yourselves challenged!

Winner 9/29/17 - Jim with Hot and Spicy Skittles. Not quite as nasty as it sounds…

RULE CHANGE/CLARFICATION (10/3/17)

There was some disagreement about the critical hit damage update from 9/28/17. I quote from PHB, pg 196 "Roll the attack's damage dice twice and add them together" so I stand by having players roll double the dice and not just doubling the damage from a single die.

TERRIBLE ACCENTS OF FAERUN (10/6/17)

I like to use accents for my NPCs, with varying degrees of success. Accents to date:

Dwarves - all dwarves are Scottish, of course
Frost Giants - Russian. Harshnag sounds kind of like a drunken Russian with bits of… something else thrown in, due to my inability to maintain a proper Russian accent
Barbarians - I started making the Barbarians Russian as well, but Jim pointed out that this was unlikely. I wanted a "northern" accent, so Jim immediately suggested Canadian and I went with it. Unfortunately, this made the barbarians somewhat less than intimidating ("I'm going to get you, you hoser…") so I may have to rethink this one.
Fire Giants - we have only encountered a few Fire Giants and I didn't really give them an accent. I'm thinking Italian, for some reason…
Hill Giants - all Hill Giants sound exactly like the Incredible Hulk.

RULE CHANGE/CLARIFICATION (10/16/17)

There was confusion (in my mind, at least) about adding proficiency bonuses to damage from attacks from weapons with which the PC is proficient. The PH is somewhat ambiguous, but Mike Shirley was of the opinion that the proficiency bonus is added ONLY to the attack roll and not the damage roll, whereas I was of the opinion that it should be added to BOTH the attack roll and the damage roll.

Tie breaker was the auto-generating PDF character sheet I started using, which adds the proficiency bonus to the attack roll only - so that's the new rule going forward.

WEIRD FOOD CONTEST (10/16/17)

The winner (from among a formidable array of weird snacks) was the bizarre glutenized rice/peanut butter snack brought by Mike J. and MC. I am awarding Inspiration to both!

RULE CLARIFICATION (10/17/17)

In reading the DMG about scrolls, it's a little confusing as to how they work, who can use, etc. As a result, I thought about it for at least 90 seconds and have decided to use the following rules:

  1. Anyone who can read can attempt to read and use a scroll
  2. Scrolls are single use only; they are destroyed when they are read.
  3. If the reader is NOT of the same spell casting class (or not a spell caster) as the scroll's spell, they must roll on the Scroll Mishap table (DMG, pg. 140)
  4. If the reader is of the same spell casting class of the scroll's spell AND they prepare spells from a spellbook, they may choose to copy the spell into their spellbook during the reading of the scroll. The caster must have appropriate level spell slots to cast the spell thereafter.

Confused…?

MAGIC ITEMS (10/17/17)

I was going through the adventure summaries (thanks again, Jim!) and realized that I haven't been doing a great job of keeping track of magic items. I am trusting the players to keep track of the items, but, in an attempt to both remember what I gave out and how the items work, I have gleefully ripped off some internet person's magic item template (thanks to Mike Shirley for suggesting this, and providing a template that I ultimately did not use). I will print out the item cards and distribute them at the next session.