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4

Some games (mainly Indie-Games) involve the players in the job the game-master is usually doing: telling what is happening and inventing details of the world. If you were OK with sacrificing your prepared encounter, but would have liked some colorful storytelling, you could have tried this way: Rogue: Ok, we go there. GM: Hm. OK. Four days later ...


40

Take charge, respectfully Treat your players' action declarations as statements of intent rather than a completed part of the narrative. Feel free to slow things down to insert details and intermediate steps when needed. What they are doing isn't always a problem. When a player says: "Ok, I go there." ...treat what they said as: "Ok, I intend ...


10

Short version: Ask questions. Abstraction The first thing to be aware of is that everyone has a different level of detail that they want or are comfortable with in their narration. Both your version and the rogue's version ultimately accomplish the same thing: the blacksmith's request is accepted, and the rogue is on her way to take care of it. Your way ...


8

There are two distinct possibilities that spring to mind when dealing with this particular problem. But, as was mentioned in the comments, make sure that this style of play will contribute to your players having fun, and not force them to do things that they don't want to do. To that end, the standard advice of "Talk to your players!" is applicable. With ...


0

Have you considered that exploration is not their thing, just your thing and you are trying to force it upon them? In any case the best approach, as is always in TTRPG's is to communicate with all of the involved. Start by asking what they expect from your game, after having listened to them explain your view. Then discuss any differences, like are they open ...


0

I have refereed the Lost Mine of Phandelver twice. The essential trick is to think of what you would be seeing if you were actually there and then roleplay that as the referee. Since you are presenting a situation that leads to adventure this will provide a natural way to hook into the information that the player need to proceed. There two broad ways for ...


3

I would simply tell them — out of game — that a big part of the game is exploring and looking for hidden stuff, just like searching fallen foes. This holds true in any RPG, even the video game ones. One of the big differences is that in the table top RPGs you don't get anything given to you (hints or other information) unless you ask.


16

Give them a reason to explore You are most likely correct that a mini-lecture on the benefits of exploring in game will not get your players to explore more (and may annoy them, as well). You telling them that exploring is a good thing will never be as good as them realizing that they need to explore on their own. But what you can do is provide ...


7

The Angry DM has a good article about non-combat encounters, generally. Speaking to dialog with NPCs in particular, his advice (which I've started using, to good effect) is to give each NPC a(n): Incentive: why might they help the PCs? Objection: why might they not help the PCs? Alignment (even if the game/system doesn't use alignments; they're more ...


2

As a new DM, this has been a learning process for me as well. Here is how I personally have improved (and am continuing to improve). Spend longer before the game than you think is necessary. Approaching this like a writer has helped me significantly- make sure you write down the NPC's motivations, recent history, personality, and other details. Anything ...


10

I think of this as a two part issue: "How do I work out what NPC expresses with their answer?" and "How does the NPC express themselves in that answer?" Given that you're only worried about major NPCs, the first part is the easy one: At all times, bear in mind your NPC's motivations, both localised and general. Which is to say, have in mind a rough idea of ...


21

I'll never claim to be the greatest GM, but here's a few things that I've come up with after a couple of years running a game: Describe how instead of just saying what Sometimes all you need to do is give the players the gist of the NPC's message if you add in a description of how they say it. Say something about the nervous tick, the furtive glances, the ...



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