Dungeons and Data – An Analysis of The First 15 Sessions of The Tanius Campaign

The Tanius Campaign Journal
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With the 15th session officially on ink, it is time to bust out the charts and graphs!

Much like the last time we did this, I am going to do a detailed analysis of some key in-game metrics. Since the session count hasn’t ballooned up that badly yet, we’ll continue analyzing data from the entire campaign up until this point.

The Secret To Getting A Raise Is Changing Jobs Often(Or Leveling Up Past Lvl 4)

As expected the rate at which the party is acquiring currency has been accelerating fairly quickly. In sessions 11 through 15 the party collected 3.33 times more coin than in the first 10 sessions. While some of this is a bit of a misnomer because a good chunk of the bump that happened in session 11, which featured a treasure horde earned during the previous sessions, the fact remains they are starting to make some serious cash.


Coin_Acquired_By_Session_01_15

For the sake of illustration, here is another graph with copper removed so you can see some of the movement from coins with larger currency values.


Coin_Acquired_By_Session_Without_Copper_01_15

As mentioned above, the overall rate at which their wealth has grown is increasing dramatically. Interestingly the amount of platinum has stayed relatively flat, but if you dig into the details the reasoning makes sense.


Coin_Acquired_Over_Time_01_15.png

While platinum is a rare roll, the overall body count from the earlier sessions is very high. This means there were enough chances to get some platinum to roll early on, and with the smaller sample size of killed creatures in the most recent session it simply hasn’t shown up yet. I expect over time for platinum trend to catch up with the rest of the coins.

And of course to go along with their pay increase, they have also been acquiring some more hard assets.


Treasure_Acquired_By_Session_01_15

While the amount of artwork obtained dropped a bit, the magic item and gemstone count went up. In this case both the gemstones and the artwork are following a pretty straight-forward trend, however like many things in this game when they were dished out was a result of DM intervention. The initial bump of artwork was due to the party acquiring an old mansion with a great deal of free artwork. Session 14’s gemstone increase simply because the horde was given in a treasure chest, so I decided to skew the drops a bit to feature more gemstones.

The increase in magic items is largely due to timing. The 11th and 14th sessions were the end of plot important dungeons that featured treasure hordes. This concentration of payouts results in a slightly higher than usual magic item count. I expect rate that treasure drops to stay fairly flat for the time being, however it might be time for me to start tracking the overall treasure quality in future write-ups.

A Little Less Cuddly, A Lot More Dangerous

Not surprisingly, as more members of the party cross the all important level 5 threshold, their killing power starts to go up significantly.


Damage_Dealt_By_Session_01_15

This makes sense because a lot of important class features such as multi-attack and cantrip damage scaling take place at level 5.

Interestingly enough while the overall damage count is going up, the number of encounters is actually going down. However, the fact that the party has been in exclusively violent encounters since session 6 has certainly helped make up for the lower encounter count.


Encounters_By_Session_01_15

Along-size the reduction of encounters, there has also been a reduction of enemies killed. However, this switch from killing less little guys to more big guys has actually helped contribute to the increase in overall damage done.


Enemies_By_Session_01_15

Part of the reason this is happening is simply due to enemies having more health to hit, but the other important factor is how these types of encounters impact a player’s table time. When the party is fighting fewer baddies, each party member gets a larger share of the turns in combat. This results in the party as a whole dishing out more damage over time as long as the rate of play is sustained.

Padding The Resume

While experience growth hasn’t gone parabolic quite yet, It should be no surprise that the rate at which the party is gaining experience is continuing to increase.


Experience_Gained_By_Session_01_15

In this case the reason for this relatively linear trend has less to do with how 5e is designed, and more to do with me the DM.

In the early phases of the game I have been pretty liberal in doling out milestone rewards. This resulted in quite a few early gains that the party wouldn’t have had otherwise.


Experience_Gained_Over_Time_01_15

Despite the fact that I continue to dish out milestones, relative to the first 10 sessions amount of experience earned from combat relative to all other sources is increasing dramatically. As this trend continues, I expect the session by session experience to increase at a higher rate as long as the sessions stay relatively bloody.

Final Thoughts On The First 15 Sessions

I am definitely noticing as each player gains more options in combat, the rate of play is starting to slow down. The main reason this is happening is because spellcasters have a much wider list of spells to sift through. On top of that, the enemies are starting to become more nuanced, so my time double checking the rules is starting to slow the game down as well.

At the end of the day the main way to work through this issue is for everyone to come to the session prepared. Answering questions between sessions helps quite a bit as well, and as time goes on I expect players to become more familiar with their options as well.

Overall the campaign is progressing at a wonderful rate, and as far as I can tell everyone is having a good time. At the end of the day I really can’t ask for any more than that!


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