RPGsport: Online D&D Tournaments a new eSport?
16 players, 4 teams, 15 pre-generated characters, 3 arena’s, over 4 weeks, $5000 grant prize.
eSport’s have been competitive video game, and RPGsport is trying to add competitive PvP D&D games to the mix.
Its a fairly new concept and RPGsport is breaking ground with it. There’s a lot to figure out and organize, but it looks like its down to the competition representation and display now.
I watched my first match [heat?] Saturday, November 17th 2018. I was reading through the rules well watching it play out.
Two teams square off and take turns Banning and Picking their Player Characters. This is the first hurtle of the game and should really be more emphasized.
Ban 1 Ban 2
Pick 1 Pick 2
Pick 4 Pick 3
Ban 4 Ban 3
Pick 6 Pick 5
Pick 7 Pick 8
If more information was provided about the players, and as the game progresses I’d like to see player stats (time playing D&D5e, time DMing, # of events played, wins\losses, Kill ratio, etc.). I would even like to see the stats from play-testing the pre-generated characters.
Then reviewing the pre-gens and you could likely put down player scores for betting – first before character pick, and then after.
The order of play is done through Initiative. There are magical items (potions mainly) spread out, along with traps. I watched on player getting completely decimated by an attack that then pushed them back into a trap, ending their character.
There are three 45 minute matches on each event. players have 45 seconds to declare what they’re PC is doing each round. Then then have as much time as needed to resolve their actions (moving, attacks, dice rolls, etc.). I noticed there where quite a few pauses for the DM’s to clarify rules. There where a few DM’s, only one ‘live’ and active, at least 1-2 additional DM’s managing things behind the scenes (Roll20 stats, Character tracking, time-keeping, etc.).
Apparently the DM that managed the DNDBeyond interface (an overlay that game PC stats as well as HP) was in a hospital so no stat changes.
Changes I’d like to See
DnDBeyond has some issues with their spell displays. None of the spells requiring concentration make any mention of this requirement. Commonly the duration would\should read:
Duration: Concentration, Up to [X] minutes.
Roll20: I wishing I could manipulate the map as well, as I was commonly wondering what I was missing. I couldn’t zoom or have any interaction with the map as a visiting observer. I think this could be adjusted by the platform itself. Just allowing observers to review the map board as they like without interfering or making any changes. Granted I was watching the match on Twitch so it was just a live stream of video, but having a link to the tabletop to observe would add a lot of understanding for a visual person like myself. I was always getting lost in where people where on the board – mainly because I listened to the event more than watched it.
This type of game eliminates a few of the classes – characters are out when they drop to 0 HP. but brought back if healed. They then start in their spawn\starting zone with only the amount of HP as they where healed for.
Because of this, certain PC classes are nullified (grave domain cleric for one).
There are a few rules used, and the one that threw me was the optional flanking rule being referenced from the DMG. It really through me as that wasn’t mentioned in the rulebook as it currently is printed.
What would be really interesting:
Game and teams announced. All players have a certain amount of time to submit a pre-gen character for the event, likely only 1 week in advance before the event.
Would be more interesting if those pre-gens, and the existing pre-gens where all available, with the first round being to eliminate have of the characters. Could be even more interesting if the submissions where only released a day before the event, to limit the amount of play-testing that would happen with each character. Well the existing pre-gens players would have more knowledge about.
Future eSport RPG games
I was thinking about a scene from the Dark Sun series “Tribe of One” by Simon Hawke where the main character was playing a RPG in a casino, for money.
The character had to pay in to play, win money by defeating opponents and obstetrical. It got me thinking:
A set adventure where players picked pre-gens and had to buy in for their characters HP. You basically payed x amount have so much XP. Every character can then heal themselves by paying up their HP.
Just the beginnings of the idea…