It all started with me being interested in playing Dungeons and Dragons. I grew up in a deeply religious household. My mother was a devout Christian and believed that anything that mentioned or included magic was from the devil and would damn me. She even went as far as throwing away all my Yugi-Oh cards. So I never got to play as a kid and now that I was an adult I had the freedom to explore my interests. My husband got the starter pack for “Mines of Phandelver” for me and when I looked it over I put it right back down. It was pretty intimidating for a beginner, especially after watching professionals like the cast of Critical Role play. For about six months I didn’t touch the starter pack.
We filled the time by watching youtube shows like PuffinForrest, CriticalRole, GinnyDi and Roll20. It was so wonderful to see the stories play out and learn how fun and rough it could be to play. By watching those shows it became less intimidating to learn how to play. I wasn’t interested in being the DM though and my husband offered to take that role to ease me into it. This was also his first time playing D&D so I commend him for stepping up and continuing to be our DM.
We started off with a simple pen and paper method. All of our maps were on 1 inch gridded laminated landscapes that my husband found online. And I helped occasionally draw out the maps as I have some background in art and love crafts. We found this awesome generator for 2D tokens and we made a bunch for npc’s, creatures, and villains. We also created tokens for our own characters. They were these 1 x 1 inch squares with little bubble people that were super adorable. We found some really cool item cards. Then we slowly graduated to erasable maps that we saw on a kickstarter. They were double sided and we bought 2, one with grass/stone and one with sand and stone.
It was supposed to be a group of 4 total but one of the original people interested ended up getting so drunk on the night of the game that he never showed. The story we got was that he got off work and started drinking at the bar, AT WORK! He got so drunk that he passed out in his car in the parking lot and woke up there the next morning. There was also some stuff with harder drugs so I had to put my food down on having him in my house. Needless to say, he never came in for a session and we moved on.
While our first foray into D&D started as a fun game it soon became the escape for one of our players as his mother was diagnosed with cancer. The family thought she would go quickly because the cancer had progressed too far so he had to take care of her almost full time. The game became an escape for Mulan, (I will be referring to any and all people mentioned, by their character names). We tried to make it as fun as possible for him and it really made a difference. He let us know that for a while, when we played, he could forget that his mother was dying.
Our first table consisted of my husband (DM), Mulan (pronounced Muh-lan, a human fighter), Necrolesian (another coworker and half-elf rogue), and myself (a tiefling named Vengeance). We got pretty far into it, to the point where we fought the thugs in town and raided the abandoned ruins in the back of town. There was even a conflict in the team when the rogue was being a blatant thief and Mulan, being lawful good, warned him that if he kept doing that around him he would be forced to turn him in or kill him. We also had some pretty fun times like pointing out to Mulan that even though he pronounced it differently it still looked like a certain princess on paper. He didn’t even realize this until we said something and then we couldn’t stop laughing about it.
There were some cool encounters with goblins and one owlbear. The last we saw was the shadow of a dragon as it passed overhead. After that session, about 2 and half months in, we had to stop because Mulan’s mother got worse and he thought that was it. He planned to move to Florida after she died so he was going to prepare for that. Just like that our new table was over. We took a bit of a hiatus while my husband figured out how to get a full table again. At this point he knew he wanted to DM our games and he hasn’t stopped since. That’s when he called his close friend to join our table. Then we waited to hear back…