Any word on the Lair assaults, etc

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Several months ago, I remember the RPGA preview/report page mentioning some supposed new LFR adventure types including Lair Assaults. A few months later, someone asked about them and we were assured that they are really awesome and a lot of fun and coming soon to a table near you by people who said they had been working on playtesting them. Does anyone know what their current status is? Are they canceled, put on the back burner, or is there more information about them that I have simply missed seeing.
I wonder if Wizards of the Coast ditched Lair Assualt and LFR Excursions in favor of the forthcoming D&D Encounters. I guess that D&D Encounters is going to be a weekly play program offered on Wednesdays which offers one encounter per week in an ongoing mini-campaign that is suppose to play out over the course of a few months. The program tackles Undermountain, so I wonder if that's how it ties into Living Forgotten Realms in place of the Lair Assualt and LFR Excursions.

But, I am just guessing. Since the origial Lair Assualt and LFR Excursions announcement in August 2009, all we've heard was that there was suppose tobe play testing at a few locations. Is anyone in contact with those locations to see if play testing even happened?
-------- Don (Greyson) -------- Non-smoker, White, Non-golfer, U.S. American
I thought LFR Excursions = D&D Encounters (Undermountain)
I think the Thursday, 3 pm, seminar on D&D Organized Play (at DDXP) may answers those and other exciting questions.  I plan to attend.  If I get any hot news, I will try to go online and summarize.

Keith
Keith Hoffman LFR Writing Director for Waterdeep
I think the Thursday, 3 pm, seminar on D&D Organized Play (at DDXP) may answers those and other exciting questions.  I plan to attend.  If I get any hot news, I will try to go online and summarize.


Cool. You'll have to keep us posted.
-------- Don (Greyson) -------- Non-smoker, White, Non-golfer, U.S. American
And while summaries from the show will be awesome - I've been told that the Seminars at the show will be made into Podcasts as well.

So, while the news may be delayed in getting to us - we'll all have a chance to listen in.
WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

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For those who hadn't noticed, Greyson's 'guess' about D&D Encounters is a close paraphrase of a section of the instructions which come with the March Worldwide D&D Gameday kit, which I downloaded this morning. 

I'm not sure what I think about the 'runs on Wednesdays' bit - though I'm encouraged that elsewhere in the instructions organisers are encouraged to run a 'catch-up' D&D Encounters session! 
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Currently running LFR and D&D Encounters events in Sheffield, UK. Contact me for more details.

Yes, I am told the seminars will be podcast (or at least recorded).  Don't know if that is live, or what the delay is.  If you want blow by blow, look for it.  I will only capture a summary of what I perceive as news or key info.

Keith
Keith Hoffman LFR Writing Director for Waterdeep
Yes, I am told the seminars will be podcast (or at least recorded).  Don't know if that is live, or what the delay is.  If you want blow by blow, look for it.  I will only capture a summary of what I perceive as news or key info.

Keith



I'm trying to get info on the regulatiry of the podcasts, but so far, nobody's talkin.

WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

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No mention of anything called Lair Assaults.  See my posts under the RPGA General forum.

Keith
Keith Hoffman LFR Writing Director for Waterdeep
No mention of anything called Lair Assaults.  See my posts under the RPGA General forum.

Keith



As far as I know, lair assaults are replaced with the D&D Encounters. The first one (Undermountain) is LFR related and those characters can be exported into the LFR campaign.
I thought LFR Excursions = D&D Encounters (Undermountain)


I think this is correct. It looks like LFR Excursions was re-branded as D&D Encounters. The two programs are exactly the same if you compare the LFR Excursions discussion from August's GenCon to the recent D&DXP announcement about D&D Encounters. I guess the program was just renamed to promote the larger D&D brand.

So, maybe their is still some hope that Lair Assault is forthcoming for those interested in that program.
-------- Don (Greyson) -------- Non-smoker, White, Non-golfer, U.S. American
I, too, recall there being TWO programs mentioned - Encounters and Lair Assaults.

I haven't heard anything new/recent about Lair Assaults, which usually means there's nothing to say, but I can always ask Chris when he's back in the office next week.  
WolfStar76 Community Advocate (SVCL) for D&D Organized Play, Avalon Hill, and the DCI/WPN LFR Community Manager DDi Guide

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The first one (Undermountain) is LFR related and those characters can be exported into the LFR campaign.

I am curious to see how this will work.

Since the characters can be exported into LFR, I would expect that everyone will start with 1st level PCs and only advance based on experience they earned.  At one encounter per session, that's 8-10 sessions before you hit 2nd level, which would likely feel a bit repetitious to me.

I am also interested in seeing how they deal with the obvious problems of single encounter sessions.  Either they will only be doing extended rests every four sessions or so (with attendant issues of bookkeeping and dealing with players dropping in and out) or everyone starts fresh each session (which skews things in favor of daily powers with encounter-long effects and benefits those with few healing surges).  Each seems problematic.
I was wondering about both of those things myself.  I'm betting that the encounters will be bigger than your standard encounter, to make it worth going out to the game store for one fight and so you don't have to wait 9 weeks to go up a level.  But too much XP in one fight could make it really deadly.  Since it's Undermountain, there could be a lot of traps and hazards incorporated in, making for interesting combats and potentially more XP.  Stances, Rages, and Guardian Forms FTW?  Also wizards will be scary- all their dailies in one encounter. Surprised
A season could conceivably have you start at a higher level as well.  Unliekly if it's FR and you can port the characters over to LFR.
Sorry WOTC, you lost me with Essentials. So where I used to buy every book that came out, now I will be very choosy about what I buy. Can we just get back to real 4e? Check out the 4e Conversion Wiki. 1. Wizards fight dirty. They hit their enemies in the NADs. -- Dragon9 2. A barbarian hits people with his axe. A warlord hits people with his barbarian. 3. Boo-freakin'-hoo, ya light-slingin' finger-wigglers. -- MrCelcius in response to the Cleric's Healer's Lore nerf
From what I remember, Chris told us that you would start with a first level and end at 2nd. Each encounter is really 1 encounter. The extended rest is somewhere after the xth sesion (halfway). How the rules deal with some of the issues of attendence and how to determine daily used I don't know, although at 1st level that is not a particular big problem. Remember, the program aims at getting new players into the game and they are supposed to last only 1 to 2 hours. I know that at my local shop the fact that you have to sit down for 4 hours is a serious draw back to the casual gamer and the customers who want to give it a try. I do know there are some special rewards for players who attend everything, but Chris did not go into the details of what that reward would be.
From what I remember, Chris told us that you would start with a first level and end at 2nd. Each encounter is really 1 encounter. The extended rest is somewhere after the xth sesion (halfway). How the rules deal with some of the issues of attendence and how to determine daily used I don't know, although at 1st level that is not a particular big problem. Remember, the program aims at getting new players into the game and they are supposed to last only 1 to 2 hours. I know that at my local shop the fact that you have to sit down for 4 hours is a serious draw back to the casual gamer and the customers who want to give it a try. I do know there are some special rewards for players who attend everything, but Chris did not go into the details of what that reward would be.


Short sessions are likely to work better for stores that aren't open late, as well. I know the store where I'll be running is only open till 9 PM, which is not enough time for weeknight LFR. The other two LFR weeknight game days I've played at both tend to run into closing time problems. So, yeah, I like it.



The first one (Undermountain) is LFR related and those characters can be exported into the LFR campaign.

I am curious to see how this will work.

Since the characters can be exported into LFR, I would expect that everyone will start with 1st level PCs and only advance based on experience they earned.  At one encounter per session, that's 8-10 sessions before you hit 2nd level, which would likely feel a bit repetitious to me.

I am also interested in seeing how they deal with the obvious problems of single encounter sessions.  Either they will only be doing extended rests every four sessions or so (with attendant issues of bookkeeping and dealing with players dropping in and out) or everyone starts fresh each session (which skews things in favor of daily powers with encounter-long effects and benefits those with few healing surges).  Each seems problematic.

I was figuring, using LFR as my example, that since each LFR adventure has roughly four encounters that the D&D excursions might be broken up into three "acts" that make up a story arc. Each act being analogous to an LFR adventure. An extended rest is assumed to take place between each of these "acts".

I'm curious if for the undermountain excursion, if you have to use the pregen characters, or if you will be allowed to generate one using the LFR rules?
-Sartredes
The estimate was if you played all the encounters, your PC would be halfway between 2nd and 3rd level.  I think you can create a LFR compatible PC, although I don't recall if that was explicitly stated.  The idea is one encounter, takes about an hour.  Good for a weeknight.

Keith
Keith Hoffman LFR Writing Director for Waterdeep
Gonna shed a little light on things here, not that I have many more answers than you all.

1) As others have said, it really IS going to run as 1 encounter/week.  Chris mentions in a blog post (here) that you *can* opt to run more adventures, but there are downsides to doing so (IE - if you run all 4 weeks (one chapter's worth) of adventures in a single day/night - you'll have nothing to play for the following weeks).

2)  When you opt to export your character from Undermountain: Halaster's Last Apprentice into LFR, one of the ways/reasons you'll be able to do that is because of the new Retraining rule.  I suspect (but don't know - this is ALL me/my speculation) that D&D Encounters characters will use the "base" RPGA Character Creation Rules, or the D&D Adventures will have its own appendix for creation rules.  It's been said that the CCG is going to be split into multiple documents in the near future: General, LFR "appendix" and I would expect a "D&D Encounters" appendix as well.  That's just my personal speculation, however.

3) It's been said you can either grab a pre-gen character (most likely options for walk-up and new players) or you can bring your own 1st level.

4)  It's possible that future seasons will start above 1st level (though, being aimed at casual/new gamers, I doubt we'll see play that goes beyond Heroic Tier) however the first two Encouters program (Undermountain and DarkSun) are for 1st level characters.
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