My next session of Lost Mines of Phandelver will be a week today. The characters have made it to the town and have been picking up rumours. There were three possible ways that they could have chosen to go from what they learned, and I picked the one that I thought was most likely to appeal to the players.
I am recreating all the maps in the module using DungeonDraft and then importing them into Fantasy Grounds for us to play. DungeonDraft has a trace image function so I can easily screenshot the PDF map, save it as an image and then draw over the top. It makes building maps quite quick.
I assumed that they would go after the bandits, and two of the players immediately latched on to those clues, but then the most stubborn player decided that they needed to head back and deal with the goblins and help rescue their NPC patron.
I, of course, had planned and mapped the bandits and set up all the encounters on Fantasy Grounds. The effort isn’t lost because I know that they will come back and deal with them.
There was more than enough to do in town to keep them amused during the session and it was only at the end of the game that they finally decided on their next course of action.
I now have this week to build all the maps, encounters, and loot parcels for Cragmaw Castle. I also copy’n’paste the adventure text into Fantasy Grounds Story boards so that I can link from those to the encounters, maps, images etc all from within the VTT.
My prep looks to be 8 planned encounters, one map to create, one trap, and about 10 parcels of things that could be found and looted. Then just copy the text over.
So far I have been pleased with how the conversion from D&D to RMC has gone. I have had to increase encounter numbers because the characters are tougher than first/second level D&D characters but apart from that it has been easy to find equivalent monsters, spells, and items.