A while ago I heard about this great game, which had defined culture and which had been
the basis for video games that at that time for me were the best I had ever tasted. So I said, ” how hard can it be?’ and I tried to enter the world of Dungeons & Dragons.
Like many, my interest began from a friend who told me that I had ever played it and that it was all I had heard and even more. So we got together some friends, borrowed some dice and tried the game, although the experience was amazing, I didn’t know my love of the game was just beginning. Unfortunately, as many people do, my group dissolved and few of us still intend to play.
With that friend who taught me the existence of D & D, we set out to take a D&D edition that no one knew and try to enter this world with magic as Dungeon Master (DM). These are our experiences in the spirit that you, who are reading this, are encouraged to narrate a DnD beyond coupon codes and, hopefully, not make the same mistakes that we made.
The Dungeon Master
D & D has two fundamental roles on the table: the player and the Dungeon Master. The Dungeon Master is the one that prepares the story and the environment in which the players develop, reacting to the actions of the players. This sounds intimidating, and at first, it really is, but it shouldn’t be. The DM is simply a storyteller, which tells us about the world around us and the myths that give meaning to its supernatural events. Although I am one who thinks that being a DM is not for everyone, everyone should try to be. And if you don’t consider it your thing, there’s always the player role waiting for you on the other side of the screen.
The Dungeon Master is not an encyclopedia of rules, you should not know all the rules before running your first game of D&D. Many become encouraged to be Dungeon Master and come across three expensive books, probably in another language, to read so you can even start playing. It is recommended that you read them, and if you like being DM you will read them gladly, but it is not mandatory at all.
So what do I need to be DM? First, need players (Dahh). It is recommended that they be friends of yours and that you tell them that, like them, you will probably not know the rules when they need them and that they will have to stop from time to time to look for them in books or on the internet. Second, you need an adventure, which you find in piles on the internet if you know where to look. However, I recommend that you create your own adventure, much of the fun of being DM is to be able to create your own stories and see how they are carried out (or destroyed most of the time) by your players.
One thing I’ve seen many DM’s do, and I can’t disagree more, is to think they’re opponents of the players. The DM’s job is to make everyone have a good time and have fun, not to defeat them in combat with the creatures we control. If that were the goal, everyone would throw ancient dragons at a first-level group and save us a lot of time. Remember, you’re part of the group too, your job is to make the world feel realistic and entertaining. ; when your players stop thinking about fantasy and think what just happened was unfair, all the fantasy you created falls apart and looks like a simple game. Remember, this isn’t your story, it’s the whole group’s.
But the best advice I can give you is, Have Fun. Many who take care of being DM take it as an obligation or as a job, at which point it stops being fun. Being DM allows us to play Tolkien or Martin, allows us to create worlds, villains and complex plots that leave our players with their mouths open. To be DM is to tell your players that they have just defeated the great enemy of the campaign and that the hall is filled with cries of victory, making them jump and celebrate as if they had done it with their own hands. Being DM is making your players have epic adventures and making you feel responsible for it.
I said earlier that it’s not important that you know the rules of the game to be DM, and I keep thinking about it, but it’s important that there are rules on the table. How would you feel if you spent hours and hours training for a battle in a video game and the boss shot you dead? It sounds unfair, doesn’t it? The DM should be responsible for making the game feel realistic and just at all times, keeping the fun of the players.
Many ask me what the function of the DM screen is, and it’s simply a way to keep the game fair to everyone, that’s why everyone uses it. When players cannot see the results of your dice you can change them if you think the result would have damaged the fun of one of your players. The dice are an important part of D&D, it gives us that feeling of the unknown, that everything can happen; but it should not be an impediment for the group to have fun.
The above does not mean that you should be soft on your players. They will never believe that the world is a dangerous place, with dragons that can destroy you with their flame of fire if they never have consequences. Sometimes you have to see where the dice fall and observe the result without intervening. Your players will be proud of their character dies resisting the horde of orcs while their friends escape, that story will be told even to their grandchildren.
Just like dice, rules can sometimes be an impediment to the fun. If you and your group think that a rule is dumb and does not add to their game style, unzip it, fast and easy. Your job as DM is to be aware of what is entertaining to the players keeping it fair. If players want to have modern weapons in their game, perfect! but the enemies also will.
As DM you will find yourself several times reading the rules of the game over and over again, trying to understand them correctly. There are many online communities where people talk about their DM styles and seek advice. Join these communities, being DM is not easy, let’s try to make it easier for everyone. Talk to your players, ask them if they were immersed in the story if they think the game was fair, be open to criticism. Your players always have points of view to give and you must be the one who looks at how to incorporate them in some fun and fairway.