New Adventures Beckon, and I’ve Taken the First Step.

Welcome to my blog. I aim to share my journey in DnD and RPG (and yes, I’m going to write games soon), as well as share about Artisans Cooperative, my other new adventure!

I hope you’ll enjoy my blog and pop around whenever you feel, or like to share your own experiences or advice.

Most of all, enjoy!

Scenic Sea Fiord Panorama, Lofoten Inslands, Norway

First Entry of A Mostly-Clueless DnD Newbie

In which Leenna learns DnD is not as intimidating to get into… Well, except for the which-dice-when and stuff like that.

Episode 0/Session 000

I’ve always been interested in, and very intimidated by, DnD and similar games. Back in the early 2000s, I used to often pass a group in session around a table at Brightwater Commons. Too shy (and did I mention intimidated) to ask about the game or permission to observe and too broke to buy dice anyway, I would walk wistfully away.

Twenty years older, the interest in the gaming and RPG (role playing games) is now stronger in me—so much so that when I found out about a nearby hobby stores gaming sessions whilst doing research for yet another project of mine, I immediately made enquiries. Yes, they ran sessions—with very limited availability. Yes, I could sign up and join a waitlist. Yes, I could book online as soon as sessions are announced. And yes, the fee is as per the booking form. And, of course, I could come observe a session as long as the DM (Dungeon Master/Game Master) and players agreed.

It all seemed too good to be true even though the places to the month’s session were sold out. Plus, everyone was so nice about everything!

For my first official DnD session (as an observer) I opted for the morning session run by DM Ernst. Half the players appeared close to my age with only one student. The easy-going group were welcoming and most didn’t seem to know each other. It wasn’t at all intimidating! I took lots of notes and spent half the time trying to figure out the whole when and how to roll what dice… Sadly, I was none the wiser about which-dice-when by the end of the three hour session. It had been a very interesting game though—a one-shot I think it was (a full story or adventure). Speaking with the other players during the breaks (yes, there are refreshment breaks), I learned that not all the players had been playing for long and that at least two wanted to be DMs. Perfect! Because I’m still aiming to write a proper video game and a few Interactive Novels, and DnD has such a wealth of resources available and easy ways to get into it!

DM Ernst was very kind and patient with my questions (after the game) and suggested I sign up to I did. It’s a great resource, and I was very chuffed to get some character sheets and stuff from the movie that came out last year (or was it the year before?) I love that movie because the one character is so my PastLife Bestie! But I digress. All in all, it was a very educational and fun morning. The Bard even composed a ballad about the adventure and sent it to all of us, because DnD players are cool that way.

I wasted no time and hurried to get my dice set. Then I discovered that the box is childproof or something ‘cos I have the worst time trying open it. All I wanted to do was get the feel of them, for dragon’s breath sake! I suddenly knew why so many players have those bags/pouches for their dice.

Session 00

Lucky me! By being in the loop, I discovered that once a month, there’s a DM’s workshop at the store! The free workshop was on a Sunday morning but not goblins, nor primordial beings (foreshadowing), could keep me away!

DM Jarryd and DM Pete ran the three-hour workshop, which didn’t feel that long at all. We got a wealth of tips and information from these awesome DMs. Best of all, the workshop catered to newbies, wannabies, and alreadymies, so I didn’t feel out of place.

During the practice session (yes, we had to create a boss enemy), I had a failure in accessing a stat sheet to modify (that means looking it up (hate going on the net on mobiles—so aggravating with those dragonbreathed menus hidden from view!)). Fortunately, my fellow tablemates helped me out and I was able to create a… (wait for it)… A telepathic Werewolf-but-more-human boss! My tablemates were extremely polite about it.

Afterwards, I talked to DM Jarryd and DM Pete, and was happy to hear that they were planning a newbies-only session.

Not long afterwards, I got the news I’d been waiting for: the next gaming session was open for booking! I do believe it’s the fastest I’ve ever filled out a form online. I had the dice. I had some idea of what the game might look like (or the table at least). I mean, I’d been up to the gaming area twice already, right), and all I needed was my character and a character sheet!

So, as a writer, I was tempted to write out a character profile like I do for book outlines. Taking into account my persistent confusion over which-dice-when and other things like modifiers (yes, there’s algebra in character sheets and stats), and the lack of time because my Coop post (find it below) and ghostwriting and job applying… Hands down, the hassle-free way was DnDBeyond’s character sheet app. And yes, those movie ones where I could play Chris Pine’s bard character, if I wanted to. But it wasn’t me. And even it this is role-playing, you still got to be true to yourself (or your shadowself) (or your extraterrestrial/interdimensional/pastlife self). You know what I mean, right? Right…? Okay, moving along.

Introducing my character: Sycamora Forrestthorne–Ranger/Sage. Yes, Sycamora like the tree, because… oh never mind, there’s much more interesting things to talk about. So, thanks to the character app, I was able to not mess this creation up… but I did, kind of. But more about that in the next session.

Once I’d downloaded the PDF, all that was needed was to print it out. I opted for an A5 booklet form, which looks cool and convenient, but the writing is a little small and maybe A4 is best, but I’ve got new glasses now, so it shouldn’t be a problem in future… I hope… Peering like mole at the sheet during play isn’t much fun. But! Isn’t that an awesome idea for my next character—a Mole…. a Mole… wizard? Barbarian? I’m not doing the elf-thing. Seriously. No elf characters. Why? Because NDAs, that’s why.

From the Journal of Sycamora Forestthorne

Day 924

Last night I reached Goodrun*, a northern town set among snowy mountains, icy fjords, and misty forests. The trees are not as high as my namesakes and I tried not to look at the pines and birches lest I be overcome by severe homesickness once more.

Goodrun is surprisingly warm compared to the snow-filled countryside and waters around it. For that I’m as grateful as the folk who wander through Goodrun’s streets or languish in its town centre.

Over breakfast (rough bread, butter, sausage, and warm milk) from my new quarters overlooking the town square, I observed dwarves in rich finery, humans like myself, and bands of adventurers hurrying to their business or looking for some. Townspeople stop and read notices of a festival in a few weeks time. The town is offering a reward for deer meat for this festival. I am tempted. My purse has grown considerably lighter since I left home, but still, I feel compelled to seek my answers. I have few clues left, only that the one who may reveal much more is here in the north… Mayhap, my approach has been wrong…

Now is not the time to miss Sage Ashmika. She taught me well, yet it is her mothering and scolding that proves my undoing. This is no place for a ranger (or a sage) to cry over loss, but she would be right. Mayhap, I should join a band of travellers or adventurers. They might have helpful news, or lead me to answers I do not yet know the questions to… At the very least, I might earn some coin to feed my depleted purse.

To be continued…

*Thank you, DM Jarrad, for setting the scene and the adventure to follow.

In Another Dimension

Have you heard about the Artisans Cooperative?

I joined the marketing team in January and I’m so chuffed that I got to write this fun piece 🙂

It’s my first official DnD-inspired writing. What do you think? Feedback most welcome 😀


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