Thursday, 19 September 2019

Basic D&D: Solo Adventure, Author Notes

The entire Cadman Cadsson narrative is constructed from a single play-through of the Solo Adventure using the rules-as-presented in the section. I recorded each entry in a single column with a note in a second column about the choice taken. So, I could see in referring to it throughout the drafting how I played Cadman. 

Soon, I had a third column when something happened, like the Rust Monster's attack that destroys the shield. It would have have short note like "lost shield, opfor attacks +1" (yes, I wrote "opfor," Opposition Force, Opposing Force, mil-slang I picked up in college). Combats were recorded in rounds with To Hit, miss, and damage recorded. In the narrative, "misses" might be described as ineffective hits, building on how the abstraction is presented by Mentzer and I believe is played out in the Mind's Eye.

In this short story, the power of the narrative is brought forward and shown developing in the game play. What if Cadman died in the fight with the Rust Monster? Unlikely, but an outcome certainly in the fight with the skeletons, and certainly the outcome with the goblins. If we're to live in Cadman's head, he would not take the bet, but abandon the adventure to heal. The dramatic moment of Cadman seeing the Aleena's tabard on the goblin builds on his established narrative. Death means this narrative ends after one chapter; or possibly it's not written at all and the blog makes the discussion of the Solo Adventure more clinical. Fair, but far less enjoyable for you.

I'm not trying to create new fiction, but trying to demonstrate how the fiction and story become a natural extension of the game. The dice drive the narrative in a way that develops creative friction in the writing process, something that extemporaneous fiction cannot, or certainly without a lot of practice in the craft.

Posted by caffeinated at 9:53 AM in d10
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