Ohh, boy, that was a lot of work.
I had to delay the start of game nights due to this horrible cold that has had me coughing for three weeks now, but we finally had our inaugural game night of Season 2: Only The Good Die Young.
To get there required hours upon hours of prep work on my part. First I had to find a suitable storyline and get that modified to work with 5e. Then I had to do remodels and paint jobs on the miniatures– a LOT of work went into that. The minis didn’t come out too badly considering it was my first time painting minis, ever, but hours. Hours and hours. Layers and layers of paint. Correcting mistakes. Trying to mix paints. yeowch
Anyway, after that was done, I had to make up character sheets. My printer died, however, so I ended up writing out character sheets on 4×6 index cards, in multicolored Sharpie. Ten character sheets, by hand? A real pain in the arm. Most of the info came with the auto-calculations that the page made (thanks to Dungeon Master Assistance for the great sheets. Wish my printer had just allowed me to print them!) Some of the stuff, though, had to be added in by hand, with me poring over the Player’s Guide for the stats on weapons and weights and weird little things like that. So that took a few hours.
Then there was all the map drawing. We’re adventuring into the Undermountain, and even the entry level is huge. Couldn’t draw it precisely to scale, since my map is only 32×46, but I got it pretty close. The Adorable Baby wanted to help and screamed bloody murder whenever we forced him to stop drawing all over my map in purple, but after another hour or two of baby-wrangling, the map was finally done.
And after all that, there was the music to select (thanks to Tabletop Audio for the atmospheric music and backgrounds.) The house to straighten up. My daughter decorated a cookie cake for us with a lovely beholder. Okay, it was scary looking, but cool. That’s it, up above.
And, last but CERTAINLY not least, I had to get into suitable clothes and makeup for dungeonmastering. I can’t cheerfully kill people without my eyeliner and mascara and perfume. It just gets me in the mood.
And the game went pretty well. A few disruptions from the Tank, who really didn’t want to play this season but DID require more snacks than were provided. The storyline included the characters being “roofied” and kidnapped, so there was some grumbling, in character and out, about the hijacking. They did well, though. They played in character much better than last season, anyway, even if they didn’t notice my nice little touches (like the goblin that escaped them later ending up as a snack for a daunting otyugh. Luckily, they were smart enough to turn around and run when they saw the otyugh.
I’m encouraged. But super tired. It’s a lot of prep work to run a good campaign and the players basically never see it. Which isn’t the point– you want them to have fun, not feel guilty. But, boy, sometimes I wish I could have gotten them into an easier hobby! But nothing’s quite as fun as improv theater at home with random dice to make things interesting.