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78

In my opinion, It's much easier NOT to think of Dungeons and Dragons as a game. There's no winner, no predefined goals, and no rules that the DM can't change. As if that weren't enough, there's no limits on what you can do during your turn (and often no turns at all)! In order to understand the appeal of Dungeons and Dragons, I find it best to throw out all ...


62

They did however love it and want to continue next week. I am afraid you have answered your own question. The first rule of playing RPGs (or anything) is to have fun, so just make sure you also have your share of it. Now, you are new players, so it is obvious you are going to spend time learning the system, learning how to play with each other, ...


52

Dungeons and Dragons is an example of a "tabletop" roleplaying game, and you are correct that D&D can be played very much like a board game. Your confusion comes from the fact that it isn't always played like that. (Ask 100 players 'how is it played' and you'll get 150 answers...) So I'll start with the basics. A simple description of D&D ...


51

"So, what's everyone's hobby?" John asked that evening, opening a beer. "I love gardening," Kyle said. "I'm into assassinations." Nick was apparently trying to be funny, again. Making a face even. Nobody laughed. "I play roleplaying games," Zora said. Some started chuckling about that. "No, I don't mean the leather and whips and French maids stuff you're ...


51

You're not having fun. Since the entire point of role-playing is to have fun, you need to do something about it. In particular, it sounds like the character he's playing (called a GMPC) is seriously distracting him from his GM task of running a fun story for the other players at the table. You have several options, depending on whether you're willing to ...


48

What the answer comes down to is "exercise your social networks, both online and offline." You can be both looking for gamers/groups of gamers you can join and also registering your interest so that groups of gamers interested in a new player can find you. Decide what you want to do and prep your pitch Do you care what game(s) you will play, can you ...


43

Sigh, I think others are making this more complicated than it is and aren't answering the right question. Perhaps it will make more sense if you restate that brief blurb as: The players determine what their characters say, think, and do. The GM describes everything else in the world. You "say" what your character does, the GM "says" (aka determines) ...


35

It’s a problem but perhaps not as bad as “ECL 5” suggests You are probably more powerful than a 1st-level character should be. You are not, however, as powerful as a 5th-level character can be, or even should be. Moreover, even as a 1st-level character, Wyrmling White Dragons have some glaring weaknesses that don’t seem appropriate. ...


34

Children don't have the depth of view or span of attention that adults have. If your players are young, it's not a bad thing to railroad them a little bit. You might do this by simply "replacing" the information via some other means: an old beggar they show kindness to tells them he's heard a rumor about the gang, a respected character lovingly chides them ...


30

Flat out tell them (as GM) that the best debriefing possible, after the mission has inevitably failed, is to blame the failure (likely, multiple failures) on the treasons of dead teammates who aren't there to defend themselves. Have a secret society order one PC to kill another, or to frame then kill them. If they don't do it, have their own secret society ...


30

Read To Him You should be doing this anyway because reading to kids is good for them in general, but it's really handy here. Both to encourage reading, and by mixing in stories of adventure you can let him use his imagination and foster that type of development. Play Games With Him You're already doing this. Keep it up! Make believe games are great, as ...


29

If you are expected to bring a character you should definitely bring that. If you're going to make a character there you should come with an idea about the following things (but remain flexible, you idea may not be exactly what you end up with). Character name Character race (Human, Dwarf, Elf, Halfling) Character archetype (loyal knight, scheming wizard, ...


29

What kind of game is a roleplaying game? No matter how many times this is asked, it's always a tough one to answer. A roleplaying game is a fascinating mix between a bunch of other games and mediums you're already familiar with. At its core, roleplaying is probably most strongly linked to children's games of make-believe. Think of playing Cops and Robbers, ...


29

As a GM, there is one thing I hate that new players do above all other things: Don't Be Afraid To Ask Questions Or Speak Up One of the things that new players do a lot is... nothing. They don't feel comfortable yet, so they don't say a lot. That's to be expected, and it's okay. But then you get the ones who won't ask questions when they're confused, won't ...


27

Dungeons and Dragons is very much a social game. As such, there is no real "by yourself" to it. The only things you can really do separate from a group in D&D is to educate yourself on the rules of the game, and prepare for whatever sessions lie ahead. Toward that end, I recommend two things primarily: Learn the rules. Study all of the ...


27

That's his attack bonuses The entry you're seeing is a stat block for the character. The headings there under his attacks indicate his various attack options, their accuracy (that's the +2/+3) and their damage. So, in this case, we have: Melee longsword +3 (1d8+3/19–20), short sword +2 (1d6+1/19–20) or longsword +5 (1d8+3/19–20) This means that his ...


26

This entirely depends on your game, and your gaming group. What you are referring to (acting as yourself instead of your character) is called "meta-gaming" and involves making decisions that are outside of the purview of your character's personality or knowledge. Whether or not this is an acceptable practice depends in part on your group and in part on the ...


25

Role Playing At their most basic, role playing games are essentially like the games of make-believe you may have played as a child. You get a group of friends together (five or six people is a common number, although these games can be played with many more or far fewer). A common format is for each player to control a single character, with one player ...


25

To answer the primary point first: Sounds like you did a good GMing job, especially for a first time. The most important question is the one you answer yourself: Did your players have fun? (And the matching question, did you have fun?) If everyone's having fun then by definition you're all doing it right. With that said, some analysis of your more ...


24

Welcome to roleplaying! I know it can be daunting; there are literally thousands of RPGs on the market as well as out of print ones that people still play. What is roleplaying? Many a roleplaying game has a "What is roleplaying?" section in the front, and they all have different takes on it, but the most common summary is that it's a formalized version ...


24

Mentoring If you have a mixed group of experienced and green players, you can save yourself a lot of trouble by engaging the veterans to help the newbies. Let them suggest stuff and guide their apprentices, and even throw in some game-tangible bonuses like mentoring XP. And if a mentor happens to screw up and put his apprentice in a tight spot, he will ...


22

As you play, the players say what their characters say, think, and do when it's relevant or interesting to the story. A good exercise would be to imagine you are reading a book. On a book you usually knows when a character feels fear or anger, but their evil betrayal is kept until the finale. Normally, characters' thoughts are shared like in these examples: ...


22

First, stop railroading them when they don't do anything. You're here to make the world do stuff, not make the players or the PCs do stuff. Making their decisions for them just teaches them that it's not really important to make those decisions themselves, and that's the last lesson you want people new to roleplaying to take away from the experience. ...


22

Engage Your Kids in Shared Storytelling Just as reading to your children is hugely important to foster a future love of reading, I think story-telling is an important activity, too. When my kids were little, I'd sometimes engage them in shared story-telling. Give them an opening theme - "One day, Prince Jacob rode out of his castle early in the morning to ...


21

Sadly, I suspect this isn't the answer you hoped for... D&D 4E is highly combat focused. Not that it can't be used otherwise, but the rules and the product line both focus on the battle aspect far more than anything else. The Retail Play You are unlikely to find extant modules for your desired style of play for D&D 4E below 10th level. That said, ...


21

Yes, there are some pretty major problems with this from a balance perspective. Dragons have supernatural and spell-like powers, unusual defensive and attack features, and racial hit dice. If you're looking for a mechanical prohibition on playing a dragon at level 1 (instead of just comparing all the goodies they get to the features of a typical level 1 PC ...


20

Dungeons & Dragons 3.x – Too Many Traps The first tabletop RPG I played was Dungeons & Dragons 3.5ed. I recommend against 3.5 (or Paizo’s “3.75,” Pathfinder, which is really not all that different). It’s complicated and has a ton of rules, plus a lot of options that are (apparently intentionally) “traps” ...


20

"Natural" means an unmodified roll. The number you see printed on the die when you just throw it. Not adding or subtracting bonuses, penalties or rerolling. Just the number you see. Terms will differ in individual games and groups, but usually the total result (natural roll plus any modifiers) is just called your "roll," or we'll say "I got a 25." In some ...


19

By nature, a kender is always a pain to the rest of her adventuring party. :) So I'm going to look at how to roleplay a kender in such a way that you don't annoy the rest of your gaming group. Use the curiosity as motivation and justification for what your character is doing. That means you should still move to maximize your effectiveness, but describe it ...


19

On the one occasion we started a new group from scratch, we all went out to dinner together, during which we talked about what we were looking for in a game and did some basic worldbuilding. Also, it meant hanging out in a social situation and just getting to know each other. If it didn't end up working out, I believe it would be a softer rejection this way, ...



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