Giving Red Box a Try

Sarah Darkmagic - Posted on 28 May 2010

Even though I swore I wouldn't play anything other than 4e, I'm giving the original Red Box a try. The truth is the game mechanics still make me weep, at least so far, but my fellow players are awesome and I really want to play with them. They're promising me a good time and I have no doubt that they will deliver.

Obviously the first thing I needed to do was roll up my character. My DM, @NewbieDM, gave me permission to change my ability scores a little, if necessary, to make a cleric work. With that in mind, I rolled my 3d6 in order from top to bottom. The rolls actually weren't too bad with the notable exception of Strength: Str 8 Int 10 Wis 12 Dex 14 Con 13 Cha 13. Sure, I wish my strength and wisdom were just a tad bit higher so I could wipe out that -1 penalty to attack and damage and I could get 5% more XP. But then I remember it's balanced out by lowering my AC by 1 with dex, an additional hit point with her constitution, and perhaps the ability to hire an extra loyal helper or two with her charisma. Besides, if I fudge the numbers too much, I won't be able to complain as much later when she dies.

Next up, determine hit points. If I remember correctly from the audio recording of the first game, the DM is allowing the players to take the max for the first round and then roll for each additional round. After doing that, I ended up with 14 hit points, not too shabby. Last night I thought it was 12, but that's because I didn't see the part where I get to add my con bonus every level. I'm feeling a little better about her already.

Now it's time to go shopping. Normally I would roll 3d6 and multiply it by 10 for my starting gold, but I think he's allowing us to take the maximum amount of gold and he is figuring we already have our weapon. This still leaves me a fair bit to buy, but I should be able to get everything I need:

* chainmail
* shield
* mace
* sling with 30 sling stones

* backpack
* long cloak
* boots, riding or swash-topped
* mirror
* rope
* holy symbol
* 2 torches
* tinder box
* 2 waterskin
* Clothes, middle-class

These are a good start, although I might refine the list before the game on Tuesday. Now that I have my equipment, I can figure out my armor class. We are using the descending system, so lower is better. My chain mail gives me 5 and the shield brings it down to 4. Once I add in my dex bonus, I'm down to 3. Not too bad.

Now I just have character story creation. Cassidy the cleric needs a god and reason for existing. More on that later.


I love! Basic Edition DnD. I've owned several red and blue boxes over the course of my teenage years. I still find myself in the toy aisles of drug stores and dollar stores hoping I'll find a copy with an inch of dust on it. I'm just a touch jealous.

Have fun!

Yes, it should be a lot of fun.

This will be my first-well, technically second-time running a red box session. I am looking forward to it.

I hope we can make it last. :)

Sounds like you are well on your way. What sort of world setting? Choosing an interesting god for your cleric is always a fun part of the 'clericing'.

I would recommend a backup holy symbol though.

I'll definitely buy a backup symbol. There isn't a world setting, but I asked the DM if she could be a follower of Apollo to fit with the type of character I really wanted to play and to keep things simple overall. So she'll own a lyre that she can play and she''ll walk that fine line between civilization and wild, which will be a lot of fun for me. Besides, I'm the only girl in the group so being able to play the feminine a bit will be a good counterpoint I think.

Uh-oh, you forgot the 10' pole! ;)

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