Workshop Notes: Theater of the Mind

Scriv the Bard

Combat is, for many D&D players, the most exciting aspect of the game. It is where the adventurers can test the limits of their curated abilities and become heroes of renown.

Capturing these heroics while sitting around a table can be a challenge. There are several tools available to us– grids and miniatures, tokens and terrain pieces– which can provide a visual aid to paint a picture of the battle scene. While these tools are certainly fun to use, they can sometimes break the narrative flow of combat. Many a session has become bogged down with concerns of movement distance, angles, and cover. The momentum of a moment can be lost quickly and, though the addition of music can help, the immersion is lost.

“Theater of the Mind” is a narrative-based method of combat in which the scene is described by the DM, without the use of visual aids. It is…

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