Lessons learned in Ludus Batiatus

My Retiarius had his first bout last night, in +Vaclav Tofl's G+ Hangout gladiatorial arena. He didn't acquit himself well at all, poor chap.

His opponent was well known and liked by the audience, while Gaius Aemilius was a relative nobody, but they liked his unusual armatura of trident and net well enough, and he got some cheers as well.

Combat was joined, and Gaius began by trying to sweep the feet out from under his opponent using his net. Instead of succeeding with that, he threw his net back behind him two yards, landing against the gate he'd just come through. Seeing an opening, his opponent attempted to slash at him with his sword, and bash him with his shield at the same time. A combination of a critical miss on one attack and a critical success on my defense on the other saw my opponent's shield swivel around on his arm, leaving it unreadied, while his sword flew six yards behind him to land in the sand.

Somehow, after the bloody contest that had preceded us, we were the cartoon gag reel.

It never got much better. I chased after him with my trident and I don't think I ever landed a single blow, even while his shield was unready. Eventually he got back to where his sword was, and took three turns to find it due to his enclosed helmet. After all was said and done, he was back to normal and I was there still without my net. Eventually he landed a critical hit on me and slashed my chest for 10 points of damage - out of my 12. I remained standing, but barely, and due to my high pain threshold, fought through it.

Right about then, though, we lost power in my whole neighborhood. It was nearly two hours until we got it back, and by then the last bout was over as well.

Notes:

  • Do not ever doubt the raw defensive power of even carrying a shield. You needn't ever block with it, the DB does it's work regardless. Totally worth the encumbrance
  • I've never seen so many criticals, in both directions. Failures and Successes in the same rapid strike was just comical. One rolls so often in melee combats that it is almost a foregone conclusion you're going to get one eventually. We saw something like eight of them. Makes me wonder if they aren't too easy to get in the current system, or if this is just one odd data point.
  • Roll20.net did everything I wanted it to do without trouble. Biggest issue we had was that Vaclav was on a slow connection and could do voice or video but not both, but we just trudged through with audio-only and it was still fun.
  • The use of incidental a cool addition to any game. The use of incidental crowd roarings is over the top cool.
If you can spare a Monday evening, you should totally check it out, even if you just pop in as a spectator.

Comments

  1. I meant to drop by, but the kiddos would have none of it. This sounds like a lot of fun.

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  2. It is a lot of fun. If you can make it happen, do drop by. If nothing else, you should be able to step into the role of one of the NPCs

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  3. Oh yeah, the GM prep was awesome :D

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    Replies
    1. It was my first time gaming with Vaclav, and I will totally game with him again.

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