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5E Streams or podcasts where the groups complete a "standard adventuring day" in a 4 hour session?

When people start discussing what they get done in a certain amount of time, examples always come up of people getting through a lot more than any of my groups (whether I was player or DM) has ever gotten through in the same amount of time. I'm very curious as to how this happens, and with modern online experiences, I realized the easiest way would probably be to actually watch it take place.

So can anyone point to any games I can watch that actually get through a recommended standard adventuring day (6-8 encounters, plus all three pillars) in a single session of around 4 hours?

I'm primarily thinking of an ongoing campaign that does this regularly, not that one session where it it just ended up working that way.
 

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Li Shenron

Legend
I would also be interested in this.

I have got nowhere near 6-8 encounters per session. Recently I was able to run a one-shot adventure in less than 3 hours: a mini-dungeon with 7 rooms, 3 combat encounters + 2 combats avoided, and one trap. But notably the social pillar was missing (except for the Druid talking the group out of a fight with a swarm of rats). I think social interactions and information gathering is what drags my games slow most of everything, but I am sure it can be different depending on the players, if they're extremely careful or almost paranoid then exploration can take forever. I think my average is more like 2 combats per session, although I rarely play longer than 3 hours in a row nowadays.
 

Jack Hooligan

Explorer
I run two hour sessions and we got through 4 encounters in the last one. That’s about average for me. I run Theater of the Mind games so that saves a lot of time.
 

aco175

Hero
In some of the games I try to have a self-contained adventure run about 4 hours. It is typically only 3 encounters with the other pillars though. One encounter is more difficult, so maybe that counts as more than one 'average' encounter. If I had 4 hard encounters over 6-8 average, not sure if that is implied.
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
The online game I've been running for a couple months plays for 4 hours (1-5 PM on Sundays). Yesterday we got through 7 encounters and it was the "adventuring day" consisting of 2 easy, 1 moderate, 3 hard, and 1 deadly encounter, so it is certainly possible. In that game, we probably average 6 encounters though and that consists of our adventuring day. Because it is online and we have less time, I try to keep the game flowing more quickly.

Our live group averages about 6-8 encounters per session, be we play for much longer than 4 hours (usually about 10 hours). In the live game, we tend to joke more and such, but that is also because I know we will have 10-12 hours. :)
 


We haven't had any examples to watch yet...which makes me think those sorts of things are at least rare. Still, I really want to see what it looks like when it happens, to see if that pace would even be something theoretically desirable.

Does anyone know of streams/casts that do it?
 

We haven't had any examples to watch yet...which makes me think those sorts of things are at least rare. Still, I really want to see what it looks like when it happens, to see if that pace would even be something theoretically desirable.

Does anyone know of streams/casts that do it?
I think you have answered that yourself: it's "no".

If anything, streams are going to move through content slower than an average table, since they are full of actors showing off their role play skills.
 

Mecheon

Adventurer
Yeah. Even the one I heavily watch (Arcadum) tend lower than the number of encounters, though he's good at balancing the various pillars (Though, social and combat take the cake for obvious reasons)

Mind Arcadum's homebrew monsters tend to run a lot less 'normal' and more 'so, how's about having to do three sessions to take down a single bossfight'
 

pogre

Hero
The all 3 pillars requirement is going to be tough in a four hour session with that amount of encounters. We easily do that number of encounters and do hit the exploration pillar. However, I'm the first to admit roleplaying and character development (social interaction) tend to take a backseat in those sessions.

While it is exciting and enjoyable at the table - I doubt it would make a very engaging stream or video.
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
My regular group does this quite frequently, but I doubt most groups do based on the many games I've played in or observed. And even fewer of the groups that do will be streaming. Most streaming I've seen is very slow paced with not a lot of action to begin with. It doesn't look like you'll find what you're looking for, but I'd be interested to watch one that does fit the bill.
 

My regular group does this quite frequently, but I doubt most groups do based on the many games I've played in or observed. And even fewer of the groups that do will be streaming. Most streaming I've seen is very slow paced with not a lot of action to begin with. It doesn't look like you'll find what you're looking for, but I'd be interested to watch one that does fit the bill.
I would love to hear how you do this.

Because that's less than 2 minutes per party member turn without any monsters doing anything and only encounters, no other description or non-encounter actions.

Assumed 4 hours of play, 6-8 encounters, average encounter lasting 3-5 rounds, average party 3-5 PCs
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
I would love to hear how you do this.

Because that's less than 2 minutes per party member turn without any monsters doing anything and only encounters, no other description or non-encounter actions.

Assumed 4 hours of play, 6-8 encounters, average encounter lasting 3-5 rounds, average party 3-5 PCs
In one of my less regular groups, we did 10 combats in one session recently.

Basically we cleave to the basic conversation of the game outlined in "How to Play" and the players get out of each others' way such that decisions get made fast with no debating. Everyone's ready on their turn. And we use electronic dice rollers.

Just this past weekend I ran a pickup group and we did 6 fights in 4.25 hours. But that was 4 PCs instead of my usual 5.
 

This is an interesting question. I know we are all experienced, but honestly, in my 25+ years of playing, I have never seen it happen; that includes dozens of conventions and playing once or twice a week with regular tables. I can say, I have never had a group that has all experienced "ready to go on their turn" players. There is generally one thumbing through the spell book, etc.
I have seen some roleplay, four encounters and a cave exploration piece completed in four hours with a group of four. But it wasn't D&D. That is about the best I've seen. D&D, from the groups I've played with, would probably only get through the roleplay and two fights. That's at low level. At 10th level, almost no way you're getting through two fights.
DM's have a lot to do with this also. They can definitely slow the pace down. It is difficult to speed it up the actual player.

So the factors seem to be:
- Player awareness (are they ready? do they change their mind upon seeing a previous action? are they experienced? do they know their character?)
- DM (flavorful explanations? knowledge of NPC? roleplay? understanding the opponents tactics and abilities? superfluous skill checks or sticking to ones needed? dissemination of key details?)
- Visuals (grid use? minis? checking out the cool paint job/new mini? etc.)

I too would like to see just one combat filmed at fifth level with four players fighting an average opponent that only takes 20 minutes. Because I have yet in my years to see it. I don't doubt it, but my eyes have never seen it.
 

One last thing. Four hours of play almost always includes time for snacks, drinks bathroom, saying hello and asking how everyone is doing, etc. That's thirty minutes right there.
 

iserith

Magic Wordsmith
One last thing. Four hours of play almost always includes time for snacks, drinks bathroom, saying hello and asking how everyone is doing, etc. That's thirty minutes right there.
With a pickup group, I do 4 hours, 15 minutes which includes three 5-minute breaks, page-setting, and character introductions.

With my regular group, I do 4 hours which includes three 5-minute breaks. Any socializing is done 15 minutes prior to start. We have a hard stop at 11 pm.
 

With a pickup group, I do 4 hours, 15 minutes which includes three 5-minute breaks, page-setting, and character introductions.

With my regular group, I do 4 hours which includes three 5-minute breaks. Any socializing is done 15 minutes prior to start. We have a hard stop at 11 pm.
I'd love to experience on of your sessions sometime. I think it will help me grow as a player and DM
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
This is an interesting question. I know we are all experienced, but honestly, in my 25+ years of playing, I have never seen it happen; that includes dozens of conventions and playing once or twice a week with regular tables. I can say, I have never had a group that has all experienced "ready to go on their turn" players. There is generally one thumbing through the spell book, etc.
The key is to be strict about enforcing it. If you tell the players they will lose their turn if they don’t declare an action immediately when their turn comes up, and you follow through on it, it won’t take long before they start being ready to go on their turn. A few players may end up losing a turn or two at first, but they will adjust very quickly after that.
 


iserith

Magic Wordsmith
I’ll second that.
I'd love to experience on of your sessions sometime. I think it will help me grow as a player and DM
Pickup groups can be a mixed bag. By and large I've never had any real issues. It's just a bit harder to get as much accomplished since some habits have to be broken. On average, once the group figures itself out, it's pretty smooth sailing. With my regular group, it's just as smooth as can be from the jump.

I am on D&D Friends Discord server which is pretty active. I put up a game for Sunday afternoon and got 10 sign-ups in 10 minutes and more will follow. I don't therefore schedule games via enworld or Roll20 anymore as it's not as efficient. I won't stream my regular games either because there's no upside and lots of downsides. But maybe we'll run into each other on Discord sometime. :)
 

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