Frequency Counter – How A Web Series Got Me Into Dungeons and Dragons

Growing up in a small county with friends who had no interest in my hobbies meant very little room to discover and embrace new things without having someone to discuss it with. (Although it was nice having a friend who got me into the Nostalgia Critic back around 2010/2011). Roll onto 2015 and the release of Fallout 4, I was had been part of the gaming scene for a while now and while having never played the Fallout series, decided to check it out and bought the game on PS4. I own the PC version now with all the DLC’s and have modded it to hell but that’s another Frequency Counter for another day.

During the time I was playing Fallout 4 I got attached to the companion MacCready. He has ultimately become my favourite companion because he loves getting as many caps possible for a job and also approves of and encourages my desire to steal everything (I get that from Skyrim). So out of interest I was looking up the voice actors of all the companions and discovered that it was Matthew Mercer who voiced MacCready. Naturally I went through his filmography to discover he had done a role in the original Sailor Moon dub, Attack on Titan and also headed up a show called Critical Role as the Dungeon Master.

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Title Card For Game Master Tips With Matthew Mercer

Now I knew nothing and I mean zilch about Dungeons and Dragons, so I had no idea what the show was about but then as luck would have it I found his miniseries Gamer Master Tips, on Geek and Sundry, which gave advice on how to create and manage a Dungeons and Dragons campaign as a Dungeon Master. So cue the growing interest in Dungeons and Dragons and the buying of expensive but beautifully made Cthulhu dice from America, buying the Players Handbook and Game Master’s Guide and developing a Warlock to use for a campaign.

But there was just one problem, I had no friends who like Dungeons and Dragons and I was stuck at home with a job that required early hours and early nights. I was a Dungeons and Dragons player with no campaign, no Dungeon Master and no way to find one.

Fast forward to September 2016, I had started watching Critical Role from the beginning (I’m only at episode 19, these episodes are really long), and I had moved up to London to begin my Master’s Degree in Creative Writing. It was at the Fresher’s Fayre wandering around when I discovered the Anime, Sci-Fi and Table-top Society which specialised in Anime viewings, Sci-Fi viewings and playing any matter of Table-top games. And they were advertising a Dungeons and Dragons taster session for new members to the society. I signed up and this was where I met the Dungeon Master of my current campaign and one of the members who would join our official campaign group.

I was quite proud of the Warlock I had created, despite knowing nothing about how Cantrips and Spell Slots worked or well anything else on the character sheet. During that taster session several things happened:

  • I one-hit KO’d a Kobold before it had a chance to use its turn
  • One of my associates created a character so that when they used a certain spell they would ‘Flame On’
  • This character also fell into a hole with a slime but discovered a sword which he gave to the Elven Fighter (From my campaign)
  • We also found a Bag of Holding which in hindsight I should have kept because I never saw that person who took it again.

The second session went a little differently, there was inter-group conflict and about ten of us altogether, in the end while we did rescue the Knight we had been sent to find, we had to narrow down the group. So by session three it was:

  • My Human Warlock (Who, until I retired her, was pretty much the squishy one who nearly died at one point and was heading up a personal quest)
  • The Half-Orc Paladin (Our Tank and Healer)
  • The Dragonborn Bard (Who, thanks to me, got her own motherfucking Dragon)
  • The Dragonborn Sorcerer (He’s gone now)
  • The Tiefling Monk (The One Punch Monk)
  • The Elven Fighter (We met during the taster session)
  • The Rock Gnome Tinkerer (Homebrew Class and he ended up getting with the Sir Knight we rescued)

A smaller group but we had some crazy adventures up until the end of the first semester. Ultimately both the Dragonborn Sorcerer, Gnome Tinkerer and my Warlock have all been retired and because our Elven Fighter has been absent for a few sessions, it’s up in the air if she’ll return when the semester starts up again. But currently the Gnome has been replaced with a Half-Elf and the Dragonborn Sorcerer with a Cleric.

And now that I’m a little more familiar with how the rules and character mechanics work, I created a whole new character who at level 5 already has 20 Dexterity, I can’t introduce her until our first session back when the semester starts up next week but I can’t wait.

My introduction to Dungeons and Dragons has been a thoroughly positive experience and it was thanks to Critical Role that I began to learn and love Table-Top RPGs. I hope to do many other campaigns and hopefully make my own Bloodborne themed Campaign one day in the future.

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