Author Topic: Using miniatures... lightly  (Read 2693 times)

bpm

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Using miniatures... lightly
« on: November 30, 2012, 02:16:31 PM »
My group has been enjoying our very new game of DW thus far, but somewhat against the spirit of the thing, we've made a gentle use of miniatures and I wonder if others are doing the same. 

During some of the more complex combat situations, such as 6 opponents say, it became confusing as to where exactly everyone was, who could see what, etc. 

While we know the whole point of DW is to keep narrative flowing and not rely on minis and such, it just ended up being helpful to throw some down on the table to give a sense of who was where.  No hex lines or anything like that, more of a loose visual so people could remember which ork was where, who was ducking under the cart, etc.

Anyone else doing this, or using them differently?  Any arguments for not using them at all?  I'm just curious as to how people are handling complex combat.


tehnai

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Re: Using miniatures... lightly
« Reply #1 on: November 30, 2012, 02:28:00 PM »
Hey, I've used minis loosely for some old school DnD, back in the days. And in high school, we used to draw our characters as colored Xs on graph paper.

If it helps the players and yourself visualize the scene, nothing wrong with it.

Jeremy

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Re: Using miniatures... lightly
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2012, 02:35:38 PM »
I've used minis, in much the way you describe.  For us, it was a fight with like, 20+ cultists on a tower with swarming bat-things all around.  Worked ok, but given that my players are used to D&D 4e, there was definitely some bad habits that kept trying to rear their head.

higgins

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Re: Using miniatures... lightly
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2012, 02:59:01 PM »
I've used minis, in much the way you describe.  For us, it was a fight with like, 20+ cultists on a tower with swarming bat-things all around.  Worked ok, but given that my players are used to D&D 4e, there was definitely some bad habits that kept trying to rear their head.

Like what? Just curious. =)

Jeremy

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Re: Using miniatures... lightly
« Reply #4 on: November 30, 2012, 05:56:33 PM »
Having the minis all in place, with a physical marker of who was where exactly... I think it encouraged thinking in "turns" rather than jumping & cutting focus more cinematically. 

I also noticed that we weren't paying as much attention to fictional details, especially lighting.  The lights were going out one-by-one as the Eaters in Darkness snuffed them and the PCs tossed burning braziers onto the cultists to keep the busy.  But... you don't really feel the confusion and darkness when you can see where every single dude is.  Folks made decisions based on where the bad guys were, even if they shouldn't have really known where the bad guys were. 

With that said, for a big, chaotic fight... the physical markers were probably more helpful than harmful.  When the bard wanted to regroup with the fighter and the hostage, it was clear he'd have to Defy Danger to get past a bunch of cultists.  I also had a visual reminder for things like "Hey, that small group of cultists haven't done anything for a while.  They've probably got their wits about them by now, what are they doing?  Oh! They're blowing their whistles and summoning more Eaters!" 

zmook

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Re: Using miniatures... lightly
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2012, 06:44:22 PM »
Hey, I've used minis loosely for some old school DnD, back in the days. And in high school, we used to draw our characters as colored Xs on graph paper.

If it helps the players and yourself visualize the scene, nothing wrong with it.

+1 for this.  Having a sketch map and tokens for the characters and monsters helps clarify the shared fiction for everyone.  What monster is closest to me?  Does the archer have a shot?  Is there anyone in the way?  Sure you can charge him, if you roll Dex to vault the altar.

Pencil marks work, but things like coins and small dice are great, too.  

sage

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Re: Using miniatures... lightly
« Reply #6 on: November 30, 2012, 06:47:17 PM »
We usually draw marks on the map because we don't have a stockpile of minis. If you've got minis (or a good set of lego) handy they're a great way to track the action!

It says "draw maps" just because "create maps in the medium of your choice" isn't as catchy. If you're using some visual aid to help everyone keep track of the fiction, you're doing it right!