17 January 2016

The First Gathox Play Report, with some extra details

So today over at the Gathox blog I posted a brief recap of the first two play reports, from sessions back in late summer/early fall.

You can find that here. 

The group I began the campaign with was of typical size, starting with 5 players, and was comprised almost entirely of players new to RPGs. Only one had previous experience with roleplaying, and the rest weren't exactly the most likely candidates for gaming. This led to a slower character generation process, but provided continual surprise for me, as they chose ways of interacting with each other and the game world that were very different from the modes of play you'd expect from seasoned gamers.

This cost $10 at Target and makes the whole group of first-time players happy.

For example, instead of immediately sussing out clues to the mission at hand, they chose instead to spend their first hours exploring the environment of Gathox, trying their hand at interacting with NPCs and testing out the limits of their characters. Occasional reminders were given that they could attempt whatever they wanted, which really gave them the chance to establish their group dynamic without excessive risk.

Another surprise for me was their hesitation at entering the first dungeon. I chalk it up to first game jitters, as well as a fear of consequences for their first characters. Once they  began to investigate in earnest, they managed to assemble a solid array of clues and intel fairly quickly. Despite this, the players hemmed and hawed at the most obvious entrance to the dungeon before finally throwing caution to the wind.

The beauty of that first mission was the blossoming of the players' strategic mind - upon finding an oil fountain in the first room, they immediately began to devise uses for it. They treated every square inch of the first room as a potential resource, scouring moss from the walls, sampling the crusted mud, stealing hinges off doors. For folks that had never played before, I was really excited at how quickly this habit developed, and diminished not at all across later sessions.

The session ended with the team learning about floor traps - we finished with a cliffhanger where one of the Mentalists in the group fell through one, coming close to death, and the rest of the team trying to decide whether to save him or cut losses.

Too much fun!


  1. It is always nice to hear the behind the scenes reports, associated with Session logs.

    1. I think so too - not just the summation of in-game play, but how people react to those things. In the future, there'll be more table observations to go with the reports.