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D&D Party Composition: Cohesion & Tactics| D&D Player Tips

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It’s important for a D&D party to be able to work together inside and outside of combat. It can be a roleplay tool within Role-Playing Games. We go over player tips for gamers of any level of experience. We try to break it down by expereince levels, in game, out of game, in combat, and out of combat.

D&D Party Composition: Cohesion & Tactics| D&D Player Tips Video

D&D Party Composition: Cohesion & Tactics| D&D Player Tips Video Transcription
Ted: “When the, you know, what hits the fan, how does your party react?”

Dave: “Are they more of Captain America during the battle of New York during the Avengers movie or is it a little bit more like the bad news bears when they first started playing baseball together?”

Ted: “When should your gaming group even have to worry about this?”

Dave: “Join us as we discuss getting more out of your D&D party. Welcome to Nerdarchy, for nerds by nerds. I’m Nerdarchist Dave. And today I’m hanging out with this nerd”

Ted: “Nerdarchist Ted. And today we’re talking D&D player tips, party tactics, and cohesion”

Dave: “Practical D&D content and advice. He can just drop right into your D&D games?”

Ted: “If the answer is yes, don’t forget to crit hit that subscribe button and attune to that notification bell so you don’t miss a single video.”

Dave: “So we had a request to talk about D&D party tactics and having a cohesive adventuring group.”

Ted: “ All right. So I guess we got to have, I guess we have to start off with a, a, a disclaimer here.”

Dave: “Sure. I mean, this is completely an opinion piece and this is advice for interested people. Maybe we go through this video and you’ll decide this isn’t for you and your group and that’s not how you play. Uh, and you could tell us all about how you do it in your game, in the comments below. The thing is, it’s totally optional. If party cohesion and combat tactics aren’t a thing that your group is worried about, you can totally disregard it. These, these suggestions are all optional.”

Ted: “Now we have gotten over the years, you know, in the comments, emails, social media, you know, players who come to us and say, Hey, I’ve got a problem in my game. How do I make my players do? How do I get my, you know, my party to do? you know, there are lots of things that can be filled in the blanks. Uh, so like, you know, here we’re going to talk about different ways that the party can all get along and how you might be able to get more out of it.”

Dave: “We got to start with what actually is, you know, the D&D party cohesion or D&D party tactics. What, what does that even mean?”

Ted: “Well, I mean I guess it’s going to break down even further, you know, into, in combat as well as out of combat you know in combat. You, you, you’ve got things that affects are going to stack or you know, different tactics are going to synergize. You’ve got different actions that can be taken, different spells that can be cast. There are different ways to be more helpful in combat, but there are other things that can be done outside of combat.”


Dave: “Yeah. Outside of comment to me it really means kind of like staying in your lane, right If you have a party face character and that player has dedicated a lot of resources and mechanics in the game to do that thing well if it’s not a specific moment and meant for your character, don’t try and jump in front. Like, don’t try and jump in their lane and, and hog the spotlight. Let their character do it. There are designed to do because there’s more likely those characters have other areas where they don’t shine and that’s going to be your opportunity or someone else’s opportunity in the party to step forward. Basically, take over the spotlight for that instance.”

Ted: “ So, speaking of the spotlight, how about we spotlight the sponsor for this particular video and that’s going to be hero forge.”

Dave: “Ted has actually finagled to deal for you guys where he’s been given three promo codes to giveaway, which we’re going to run a gleam contest. There’s gonna be three different winners and you’re going to be able to go over to hero forge and build your own party from the ground up.”

Ted: “But hero forge if you’re not, if not particularly familiar with them. They are a miniature design a company and you have the complete ability to go in and design the miniature down to all the little nitty-gritty details, how they’re positioned, what they’re holding, what race and if that is not enough. Every Tuesday throughout the year of 2019 they are adding new features, new items, new positions. There’s always going to be new content. Every Tuesday hero forge as a company that I’ve been using for years. I’ve bought way more money than I showed from them. Uh, but they are super awesome. I love, I love everything about it. And there are many times and I’ll just sit and, you know, I’m like, I need something to do right now. I’m bored and I’ll, I’ll go on to hero forge and I’ll start, you know, making up minis. I’ve made, you know, characters that I larped. I’ve made characters from novels, I’ve made characters, you know, for current campaigns and future campaigns and I just have lots of fun playing around with it. I think you will too. So go check out hero forge. Uh, as Dave says, we’re going to run a gleam contest. Three winners are going to get a promo code that’s going to cover the cost of the mini and worldwide shipping. So three winners are going to get to make whatever they want and you know, regular plastic, miniature and it, it’ll get shipped to them for free. So go check out hero forge the link to hero forge. And that contest is going to be down in the description.”

Dave: “Yeah, nearly every gamer I know whether they buy hero forge or not, they at least go to the website and play with the character builder over there because it’s just a lot of fun.”D&D Party

Ted: “Absolutely.”

Dave: “So now getting back into the video and discussing, you know, party tactics and cohesion, I think we should look at what level experience player is this for not experienced player as a level and experience and the game, but how much experience do they have with tabletop role-playing games and Dungeons and Dragons in general?”

Ted: “ So I mean we, we can break this down to a beginner, an intermediate and an advanced and you know, depending upon, you know, where you fall into, how much time you’ve spent playing D&D or RPGs in general is going to determine where you really fall on that.”

Dave: “Now, step one, I would say for the, for the beginner anyway, is just knowing what your character can do that, you know, and that’s like the perfect place to start. And if the table is full of beginners, the only thing you should really worry about the start off with is just understanding your character and how your character plays. And maybe you have other players in your group that aren’t as knowledgeable as you, and that’s okay and it’s fine. And I would recommend letting them come along at their own pace until they figure it out. It can be a lot to take in if you’re new to role-playing games.”

Ted: “So this is where, you know, you talk about staying in your lane, um, you know, can come into play, learn your character, learn your abilities, you know, maybe before the game starts, you know, reread what you’ve got. You know, I’ve definitely seen players who have been playing, you know, for multiple sessions, like, oh, I didn’t know I have that ability. I, I’ve watched other games and I’m like, wow, that’s really cool. And I later learned that, oh, every one of that class gets that ability. And even at a low level. And I’m like, well, I feel like an idiot. Uh, you know, but you know, there are lots of things that you can do to become a better player by just knowing your character.”

Dave: “It’s a huge help. And if you are one of those more advanced players and you want to help a newer player, the only thing I would say is to get permission first. Ask them for permission. And I feel like most people would, but you know, just by doing that it changes the whole dynamic of the conversation.”

Ted: ”Absolutely. So I guess the next is going to be intermediate. Uh, and, and honestly this is where you’ve got a little bit of experience. So where do we go next?”

Dave: “So as far as intermediate and advanced players, they actually kind of go right together on, in this instance, in my opinion. And that is because you, you essentially know what your character can do and you know, depending intermediate to advance, you may also know what the other player characters are capable at the table as well. So this is where you as a party begin synergizing and meshing your abilities. In my own game that I’ve been running for the past five years or so. The battle master is always given the assassin, you know, an extra attack, which at the very beginning of an encounter is devastating.”

Ted: “ Those powers combined it a really, uh, it really does make for a lot of damage that they get the, uh, the ability to throw out there. So sometimes some abilities do really work really well together. And if you figure out how those things connect and how those pieces of a puzzle fit together, then you can actually impact the game more than just the pieces standing alone together. They really are stronger.”

Dave: “Right. And another great example would be often times you see warlocks take devil site and then they, with the intent, they want to use darkness to, you know, put their opponents at disadvantage. They gained advantage. A problem with this for a warlock is they don’t get a lot of castings of spells. But what if the cleric, the wizard, sorcerer, or you know, any other spellcaster in the party, we’re gonna actually cast the darkness for them. They get a lot more castings and then also the warlock doesn’t have to worry about concentrating on that ability. They could do other things. You’re helping, you know you’re helping the party. You’re also creating an area of concealment that on your side of the battlefield, you’re a team. There’s only a person that can actually see through it. So that gives an advantage. They can act as a spotter calling things out or they could just go, go to town and just be fierce and wreck house within that darkness. But they would all, we’ll also have many more options because now they don’t have to concentrate on the darkness spell and they can cast other spells and use our spell slots for other things.”


Ted: “Absolutely. So these are small little pieces of a puzzle where working together and planning your characters outside of the game, you know, even you can, you can talk about abilities and how, how the characters might mesh and work together. You know, in combat you have to understand that, you know, we live the lives of these characters in such short times and then the characters themselves, they live their lives. When you travel for an hour, well what happens in that hour? Do you really walk in silence or does conversation happen? You know, in some cases silence might happen cause you need to be stealthy.”

Dave: “Ted. Forget an hour, like literally when we would play a session for four to five, six hours, whatever and the character’s Wa and just a portion of that will travel for weeks together.”

Ted: “That is true.”

Dave: “Like so you can even expand on that even further. What are they talking about? Do they know they’re going to be in dangerous situations together? Why would they not be like, well what can you do? Oh, this is how I do things. What are you think about it? Do you have an actual leader in the group who is actually a tactician Who It’s going to take all these puzzle pieces and trying to, yeah, put them together?”

Ted: “I was going to lead up to that, but you know, yeah, you’re battering rammed your way through. Uh, but it’s absolutely true. You know, there’s no reason why, you know, the characters would not have a conversation and you know, you pull out your character sheet, just like a wizard would be pulling out their spell book. It’s like, well, I happen to know this and I happen to know that. And unless you’re purposefully playing that secretive character and it’s like, no, no, no, I don’t want to, I don’t want to share and I don’t want to assist the party. You know, there’s, there’s no reason why you wouldn’t be doing these things to maximize, you know, your, your tactics.”

Dave: “Well, and that’s a thing you can do as the player. But the thing you can do is the characters as you can actually have role-playing discussions, in the game if you want it to when you know you’re beginning you’re setting the watch. You guys are, you know, had having a meal or you’re taking that midday break, you’re taking a short rest and you want to do some role-playing with each other. This is a good place to do it, especially when the party first comes together.”

Ted: “Absolutely. It’s a great, you know, great. Uh, you know, session one kind of thing that you know, wouldn’t, what would naturally happen, you know, any, any intelligent group would be like, all right, you know, we need to know what skills we have? Who do we set for this? Who Do we set for That? only makes sense to me. We’ve touched on a variety of different ways that you can achieve party cohesion in combat, but they have, how do we go about getting out of combat?”

Dave: “All right, so this, this can be a little bit trickier and a part of that is we discussed earlier, it was kind of like staying in your lane, but another area where we’re talking where you’re talking about party cohesion, and this isn’t really tactics per se, but it’s like inviting the other players at the table to roleplay with you when there are things going on and say you’re the face character and you’re discussing a diplomatic situation and something gets mentioned. And so your character, the face character turns to the wizard who is studied in lore and history. And can go, hey, what about that event? What do you know about that? And what it does is opening up an opportunity for the wizard to use their skills but not just that for them to roleplay with you and the other NPC you, you know, and you might discuss that for a little bit and be like, oh well that involves, you know, this famous battle where they use this tactic and that player may then turn to the fighter or battle master and be like, you’re all about tactics and battle. You’re a master tactician. What do you think Is that still a valid maneuver? Do you think the army that is approaching, we’d use that or would it work against them? Can we, can we learn from history and have it repeat itself in a good way for us?”


Ted: “So conversation, conversation, well maybe we need to check the terrain? You know, we turned to the barbarian or ranger and say, Hey, what do you think here? So you can pull, you know, multiple characters in into a conversation you’ve got, you can really reach out and get the certain players involved.”

Dave: “I mean even my own game, the gobblers do that in a very backhanded way with your character all the time. And because he’s a knowledge cleric, but they always called him the wizard and let’s ask the wizard, let’s figure it out. This information, which is a, you know, it’s a little bit of a comedic effect within the game, but at the same time it’s still them going and bringing your character into whatever’s going on for better or ill for that character, for a Relion your character.”

Ted: “There’s sometimes I question, you know how that, how that group manages to stay together just because of the sheer absurdity of it. But we work well together. We understand the party tactics or the, you know, they know the character tactics of, of being together. So, you know, maybe the in and of itself, it’s like what, we’ve got this job, we’ve got this mission and we’re going to see it through to the end.”

Dave: “Yeah. So for out of combat, you know, just to wrap it up, it’s basically just, you know, extending the olive branch of role-playing to the other players at the table as often as possible. And also talking to each other. Role-playing with each other that, you know, these are going to build bonds with your characters. And just make them a stronger unit together inside of combat and outside of.”

Ted: “Absolutely. So definitely ha recommend, you know, you follow these easy steps and work together. Uh, but while you’re doing that, make sure you remember to stop by the description and check out that link to hero forge and that gleam contest that you have a chance to win in your own mini.”

Dave: “And, uh, while you’re down in the description, you might as well keep on going right to the comments. Let us know what you think? Let us know how this works in your game and you’re with your adventuring party? We’d love to hear about it. Why are there, don’t forget to like, share, and subscribe.”

Ted: “So until next time.”

Both: “Stay nerdy!”

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Follow Dave Friant:
My name is Dave Friant I've been gaming off and on for over 27 years. But here is the thing it's always been a part of my life I've kept secret and hidden away. I've always been ashamed of the stigma that gaming and my other nerdy and geeky pursuits summon forth. Recently I decided screw it! This is who I am the world be damned. From now on I'm gonna be a geek, nerd, or however folks want to judge me and just enjoy life. Currently one of my greatest joys is introducing my 13 yr old son to table top RPG's.

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