Lost Mines AL

KahlessNestor

Adventurer
I am going to be starting a run of Lost Mines of Phandelver for at least one college group this week (maybe 2). It's essentially an intro to TRPGs/5e for the college Board Game Society.

I had the thought that it might be interesting if coming out of the end of the adventure that their characters would be AL legal so they could continue on with them.

This is essentially a home game, so what would I have to do to make sure I run the adventure legally? Is there an AL breakdown of the adventure? Do I have to register as a DN, or is it enough to print out some logsheets and make sure they record things? How do I get them AL numbers? Any other advice?

Thanks!
 

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kalani

First Post
If you print the logsheets, use AL-legal characters, and run the adventure generally as written you should be fine. You can scale encounters up or down by adding/removing the same creature(s) (you cannot substitute different creatures however), but unlike the DDAL adventures, there is no exact guide as to how each specific encounter should be scaled. As such, either just eyeball it (as you want to maintain the difficulty), or use p82 of the DMG to determine encounter difficulty that way.

Also, keep in mind that the end-game reward (a share in the mine) can be considered a story award, but it has no mechanical benefit at this time.

DCI numbers are not needed unless one or more of you also play at stores (in which case those specific players and/or DMs will have DCI numbers they should use). Your characters will remain AL-legal if you follow the above guidance (and don't use any house rules or add extra encounters/equipment), and can then move on to any other AL-legal adventure within their tier (which is likely to be Tier 2). The characters can also play other Tier 1 adventures between sessions if they wish, but should be mindful of their levels.

Characters playing in Lost Mines can be of different tiers, but their level difference should not exceed APL +/- 2 at this point.
 
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Tyranthraxus

Explorer
one thing to keep in mind is that its designed for a 5 player group. Ive seen a 3 player group have serious problems in the first Goblin cave because the GM did not scale it for having 3 players and it was a TPK. The players more or less gave up 5e because of it.
 

Coredump

Explorer
You can scale encounters up or down by adding/removing the same creature(s) (you cannot substitute different creatures however),.
Please stop telling people what they 'can't do' unless you can provide a rules reference in the ALPG or other AL official resource. We all realize you have very strong opinions of the 'right' way to play and run, but that does not make them requirements.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
I think this is where it would be good to remind all posters affiliated with the AL to clearly display this in their posts (such as with a. sig or similar).
 

kalani

First Post
Please stop telling people what they 'can't do' unless you can provide a rules reference in the ALPG or other AL official resource. We all realize you have very strong opinions of the 'right' way to play and run, but that does not make them requirements.

When I mention that, I am quoting an article on the AL website called DMing and DM Empowerment - which provides a list of do's/don'ts to DMs when it comes to adjusting encounters, and was written during season 1 by Arthur Severance (former RC for Far West region).

In particular, I am referencing the following:
DMing and DM Empowerment said:
Dos and Don’ts of Modifying Adventures

Adding and Subtracting Foes: Do add or subtract foes of the same type from a combat to keep the challenge level appropriate to the group. Don’t add foes of a different type or switch out combat encounters entirely.Different types of foes have different abilities that can make combats much harder or much easier than substituting one foe for another of the same challenge rating may otherwise indicate. D&D Expeditions explicitly states which monsters can be added or subtracted for each encounter, however, D&D Encounters/Casual Games are a bit looser and rely on the DM to modify the encounters per the guidelines in the Dungeon Master’s Guide on encounter building.

Changing the Intended Difficulty of a Combat: Do try to keep combats at the intended level of difficulty when modifying them; make sure combats written to be easy for the group remain easy and combats written to be difficult remain difficult. Making an early easy combat too difficult uses party resources, turning later difficult combats into bloodbaths. Similarly, making an early hard combat too easy preserves resources, making later combats too easy.

Adding Encounters: Be very careful when adding encounters. Most adventures are written to be played in a certain amount of time. If you add encounters, you run the risk that the players will not have time to finish the actual adventure. Add only those encounters that the characters actually trigger, such as being confronted by the town guard after they break the law or speaking to an NPC whose assistance the characters seek. When you add encounters, be very conscious of the time. Play them out only if there is time; narrate past them if there is not.

Cutting-off Encounters: Similarly, be very careful when cutting-off encounters. If you are pressed for time, such as when a convention slot is ending or a store is closing, you can waive the last few rounds of a combat that the characters will obviously win or narrate through an encounter. However, doing so deprives the players of the chance to play the game by deciding what their characters do and by roleplaying their characters. It can also deprive them of the feeling of success that follows a combat or the opportunity to interact with an NPC. To avoid taking the game out of the players’ hands that way, don’t cut encounters short or narrate through them unless you must.

Eliminating Encounters: Don’t eliminate encounters. As a DM, you don’t know what later events the designer and the campaign staff are setting up by introducing an NPC, a foe, a location, or an object in an adventure. The material you eliminate could be very important later in the campaign.

Modifying Encounters: For the same reasons, avoid modifying encounters. However, do modify them to account for the characters’ actions. If the characters befriend someone, make an enemy, or come up with a creative solution, reflecting that fact in the encounter gives the players a sense of accomplishment. As noted above, if players somehow inadvertently miss an encounter or a reward, you may modify the adventure to insert the encounter or reward later in a way that makes sense in context. Such a change is often a good way to get an adventure that has gone far off track back in the intended direction.

Subtracting Rewards: Do reduce awards if circumstances warrant doing so. If a character does something that would anger his or her faction, you may choose not to award renown that the character otherwise would have earned. Similarly, if characters take actions in an adventure that would result in them spending time in jail or on the lam, reduce or eliminate downtime awarded to reflect that fact. Be careful in reducing wealth and magic items, as tempers can run high when that happens. However, if circumstances warrant, NPCs can withhold rewards, and the authorities can fine characters.

Adding Rewards: Don’t add any rewards to adventures, and don’t award rewards that the characters did not earn. The level of experience, wealth, magic items, renown, and downtime in the campaign, and the particular magic items available have been intentionally set by the designer and the campaign staff. You cannot change them. Moreover, characters must earn their wealth and advancement. If a character steals from an NPC or otherwise obtains extra wealth, reduce wealth found in other parts of the adventure so characters don’t receive more wealth than the adventure permits. Similarly, if an adventure is subject to limits on experience rewards, such as D&D Encounters and D&D Expeditions, make sure you don’t award experience in excess of the applicable limit.

This is further reinforced in the following FAQ entry:
[h=5]Rise of Tiamat does not include enough experience for characters to reach the anticipated levels for each episode and relies heavily on the milestone rule, which the D&D Adventurers League does not use, for advancement. It also leaves some treasure distribution to the Dungeon Master and to random die rolls. How should DMs handle these issues when running League games of Rise of Tiamat?[/h]There are two solutions to the experience issue. First, DMs running Rise of Tiamat in the D&D Adventurers League should use the rules presented under the heading “Building Combat Encounters” in the Dungeon Master’s Basic Rules (pp. 56-58 in version 0.3) or under the heading “Creating a Combat Encounter” in the Dungeon Master’s Guide (pp. 81 to 85) to adjust foes to make them appropriate for the characters’ levels. However, DMs should not create new encounters to try to make up the experience deficit, nor should they use the milestone rule.
Alternately, or in conjunction with that solution, DMs may wish to wait to run some episodes of the adventure until characters reach the appropriate level and may want to run other adventures, such as D&D Expeditions, between episodes to help characters reach the appropriate level.
As far as treasure goes, DMs must only award magic items listed in the adventure and must not award random magic items. DMs may award appropriate consumable magic items, gold, gems, and art objects within the limits set by the tables on pages 136 to 139 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide.

I have quoted these rules references so many times in this forum (and previously in the defunct wotc forum) that I sometimes answer such questions without providing the rules reference as it can be quite time consuming to re-quote things (especially when I am extremely pressed for time, which is usually the case when I provide a small single-line answer).
 
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