Arriving at the Dungeons & Dragons area in the expanded offsite part of PAX Prime I wasn’t to sure what to expect. Sure, there’d be Dungeons & Dragons, but I hadn’t had time to research the game I’d be playing past the universe and that it’d be some sort of co-op experience. My world view was quickly shattered. I was ushered into the Dungeon Master’s chair. Anxiety, fear, ineptitude, power. These are all feelings that quickly swept over me. I meekly stated that I didn’t think I’d be an interesting DM, having never messed with the game or rarely taken on the role in the fleshy world (I like digesting lore and critiquing. I don’t feel I’m creative in the sense to make new worlds, characters, etc.). A developer assuaged my concerns, letting me know he’d be there holding my hand the whole time.
Nerves settled I began poking around. I quickly learned that the experience is meant to parlay the table-top universe it’s based on as best as possible, but in a digital space. That means Sword Coast Legends isn’t your typical co-op game. It’s not a group of players rolling together. It’s “four with one”. Certainly not, four versus one. Power quickly went to my head. First it was spider eggs. I placed them all over the place after the first pull. The party was swarmed, but I’d used almost all my threat power. Seeing the imbalance I recalled a few minions, enabling the party to struggle through the encounter and save myself power for later. I played around with doors, traps and colors. Really, I kinda let them roll along at this point. I was busy with my master plan. A weak looking goblin that had 4 summons, heals and AE spells galore. He cost only five threat. I grouped them together like fire imps. I watched the mayhem cackling like a made man. On the inside.
I think I’m hooked.