April 15, 2021

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Evil Characters in D&D - Taboo?

Matt Colville's company, MCDM, released a new character class for D&D 5e this week, the Illrigger. It's an extremely interesting concept, and I'm sure lots of people will want to be trying it out. There is, however, a small problem. They are knights of the hells, loyal to those who live there, and are (by default) evil-aligned. While you might consider re-aligning the character and playing as...

April 1, 2021

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D&D Note Taking - How Much Should I Write Down?

It might seem odd to take notes for a game that you play for fun but it can be an important part of the game, especially for long-term campaigns. Places you have visited and people that you have met might come in useful to you later in the campaign when you need allies. The type of game you are playing and the way your DM runs their game will dictate how important your notes are, but it is...

March 18, 2021

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What Check do I use?! | Telling a Convincing Story Using Dice

Setting DCs and figuring out what types of skill checks to ask for is one of the more intimidating aspects of running the game for new DMs. Players will inevitably come up with crazy plans and it's the DM's job to figure out what they need to roll (or if they need to roll) to accomplish it. The rules for combat are quite specific and don't leave a huge amount of ambiguity (check out this article...

March 4, 2021

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How-to Create Tension in D&D

With the recent announcement of Van Richten's Guide to Ravenloft, there will soon be much more opportunity to explore one of the most popular settings of this game we all love. The release, due in May, promises to have us all quivering in abject horror (vampires and zombies and ghosts, oh my!) with new Domains of Dread to explore and all sorts of fun we can sprinkle into our homebrew campaigns as...

February 25, 2021

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How to Prep for Your First Session as a DM

"Spectacular achievement is always preceded by unspectacular preparation" -Robert Shuller Dungeon Masters are often hard to find and, unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your personal perspective I guess), you can't play the game without one. There are tons of people coming into the hobby who just want to play, but have nobody to DM for them. As a player who has never been a DM (or even...

February 11, 2021

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Session 0 - Start Your Campaign Out on the Right Foot

“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings Starting a brand new D&D campaign has a special feeling. The world laid out before you, undiscovered. The characters around you, their secrets and motivations unknown. There is an air...

February 4, 2021

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Better Descriptions - Give Yourself Narrative Super Powers

More Description-y Descriptions Picture this: You and your friends are sitting around a familiar table, laughing, snacking, and telling stories with dice. You have prepared for your friends an exciting adventure this Saturday afternoon. Their characters are out trekking across the vast wilderness on an epic quest, but a storm is approaching. The horizon darkens and the scent of rain is in the...

January 28, 2021

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How to Make Travel More Interesting in D&D

3 Ways to Run Travel in your D&D Campaign As adventurers, you will likely search out many new and interesting destinations, but how do you get there? Whether it's across oceans, through forests or jungles, or over arctic tundra, your characters need to get to that exciting destination somehow. Unfortunately, travel can be a bit boring. There will be large spans of time when absolutely nothing...

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