To everyone who wants to play Dungeon and Dragons, should know there are two ways to play that are easily accessible. Homebrew, which is talked about in detail on another post of mine. While Dungeons and Dragons Adventurers League, which is meeting with people in an official organized play.
Then the question becomes, which would should you play Adventurers League or Homebrew? Well, you can certainly do both if you have the time, but if you have to choose one or the other, look at these few things to make your decision on what is right for you.
Adventures league is for players to join up with people they know or random people to play in premade games made by Wizards of the Coast (the owners of Dungeon and Dragons). This means that those who want to play but don’t have a Dungeon Master, those who are new to the game, or those looking to spice things up by playing with new people have the chance to try it out without committing to campaign long adventures that take months to complete.
Downside of Dungeons and Dragons Adventurers League
Since anyone can join sessions at any time in Adventurers League, it causes for games to be run stricter than in homebrew. For instance, in Adventurers League, you only use the options given to you for character creation in the player’s handbook and one of the other books released. This means when creating a character, you must rely on your entire character to be limited to only two books rather than the current five books available. According to Mike Mearls, lead designer for the books, “It’s so, a new player can join the D&D Adventurers League without needing 20 books first.” However, an additional point is it prevents more overpowered than anticipated characters. Thus, ruining the fun for people when someone else takes out the boss quickly.
Another rule that must be enforced due to multiple people running Adventurers League, is that there can be no deviation from the script written. This means that after a massive battle, a DM must follow the rules and give the designated amount of treasure out. So even though the group found ways to export valuable artifacts, they earned no gold. Making that unique idea and others useless in other adventures. This prevents people from altering adventures to where they no longer have the meaning created for by Wizards of the Coast. Now, this may sound like a bunch of rules that can bog down the game, and it is a lot of rules. That said, these are to ensure that there is less chance of someone cheating and abusing the system in place to preserve the fun for everyone else.
Why Is Dungeons and Dragons Adventurers League Great?
“Then what is a good reason to play Dungeons & Dragons Adventurers League?” you might ask. Well, there are as many reasons as there are rules! As mentioned earlier, Adventurers League is a great resource if you want to mix up the people you play with. I have made some great friends through Dungeons & Dragons Adventure League that never would have happened if I stuck to a homebrew. Moreover, Adventurers League is great for meeting new people to see different ideas on how to play characters or give you insight on spells that can be cast.
Inspiration From Others
For example, Paladins are overpowered. They have solid hit points, great defense, solid healing, and a mind-boggling amount of damage from their smite. This means almost everyone usually plays them as a front line that takes care of all enemies why everyone else supports them. Then, I came across a character, let’s call him Rick, Rick is a front-line Paladin taking the blows for us and doing everything he can to aid his party by healing, giving them advantage, and buffing us up. You would think I would be ecstatic at the support I was seeing by him helping my fighter land hits and survive debilitating attacks.
Yet I was not! I was confused and distracted because NOT ONCE DID HE DRAW HIS SWORD!!! That’s right the paladin designed for damage did no damage. I was taken back, to say the least. After the game asked him all about why he chose to play that style. He told me that it was because he believes Paladins are OP and always played the same way of tanking and attacking. He prefers playing support and wanted to mix it up. Then he noticed that the paladin can be a great support. It was an idea that never occurred to me and is now an extremely fun way to play a class I never liked to play because it felt easy. This is one example of me learning a new way to play something out of countless stories I could tell by the way.
Great For Beginners
Now, let’s say that you are brand new to Dungeon and Dragons, none of your friends play the game and you have no idea how to play. You do a quick google search typing in dungeon and dragon’s books. Lo and behold you find over 10 books for the game and have no idea where to start. Then you come across this blog talking about dungeons and dragons. Suddenly you read about Adventurers League and how it’s great to try for new people. A quick search tells you there is a place that plays weekly that you can join and try out. You drive there and meet some friendly people who show you the fun of the game and now you are reading all my articles because I did such a good job telling you about Adventurers League. Your welcome.
In all seriousness though, this is exactly how I got into Adventurers League. I read an article that told me to come to a store where they did this weekly. I found out it was close by and figured “why not”. Spent a Wednesday night talking to a bunch of people completely out of my depth with no dice, character, pencil, books anything. A few awkward conversations in, they took care of it all for me. They helped me understand my character, how to play him, and hooked on the game. Years later here I am typing this blog telling you it’s great. In short, if you’re new, try it. It is lots of fun and they can really help you in learning the game. You can find a website that reveals places that host Dungeons and Dragons Adventurers League here.
And yet another reason on why to play!
One of the other reasons you may want to play Adventures League is that you want to play the game but there’s just one small problem. No one you know wants to DM or know how to. In this case, Adventurers League is great as it relieves a lot of the burden of being a DM. If no one wants to DM, then you can just form a group and join adventures that people post and play them there as a group while a random person oversees the game. This is great as sometimes you meet exceptional DM’s that make the game extremely fun and you incorporate into your group so that now you have a DM in your group who is fun and gets along well with everybody.
Another reason is that you or someone else is new to being the Dungeon Master and wants to see if they like it before being the one in your group. Then Adventurers League is a great way to try it out since you do not have to create the adventure as it is created for you. Curveballs are settled by how the story is. Also, sometimes you will have a random join your group who is an experienced DM and gives you tips and pointers on how to do it. As is the example with me when I began to DM and was afraid of messing up I would practice at Adventurers League to get an understanding of how to best story tell and build the world around me for adventures.
So why not fully inclusive, here is a brief introduction on what Dungeons & Dragons Adventurers League is, and what are some things to be wary of when playing and some reasons why it might be a good fit for you. If you liked this article and want to know more about homebrews, then click here to see an article I did for that. As always, just keep on rolling and I hoped you enjoyed this article.