Split Personality: The Early Days

2009 March 10
by Stupid Ranger

In honor of the newly received preview copy of the PHB2, I could not resist the urge to try out one of the new classes.  No, I’m not pre-emptively reviewing one of the classes; today’s tale is one of split personalities.

Two Personalities
Dante allowed any of us in the group to roll up a new PHB2-class character to be introduced into our Keep of the Shadowfell game.  My first character is an Eladrin Wizard; she’s been fun so far, but I was really interested in trying out one of the new classes. So Saturday night, I’m sitting at the table with one new character and one old character, trying to divorce myself from Eaerenel, my wizard, so I could enjoy Rynna, my new character.  Then Dante gives us the good news: we can run one or both of the characters.  
One Player
So there I was, with two great characters and permission to enjoy them both.  And that’s when things got interesting.  How do you manage two characters engaged in the same battle?
One of the easiest ways to keep my characters separate was something I determined during my second character creation.  My wizard is mostly ranged; Rynna is mostly melee.  This helps keep battle strategies for each character separate.
The second step was to move my wizard personality into the background.  I decided to make Rynna my primary personality, and I made it very clear to the rest of the group that my in-character actions would be from Rynna unless I stated otherwise.  This helped avoid a lot of confusion and didn’t leave me trying to maintain two prominent personalities.
The third step, which really helped me maintain what sanity I have, was having notecards prepared with each character’s powers with descriptions and bonuses already calculated.  The cards had different colored borders, so they were easy to keep separate.  Overall, these cards really helped me keep each character’s abilities separate, and I didn’t have to flip between books and pages checking on things.
Sanity Maintained
All in all, my first split-personality session went really well.  I’m looking forward to more adventures with my two characters.  I suspect it will be more difficult as they gain levels and additional powers, but I think these initial steps will help keep things from getting too crazy.
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