Saturday, 28 November 2015

New players? Use premade characters.

Dominic Matte
After years of introducing people to D&D and seeing where people want to engage and struggle to do never involve creating a character.
so, I've come to the conclusion that a person's first ever RPG session should

When you want to try something new, you want to actually try it. A new player who wants to try D&D wants to start roleplaying, experience awesome action and tense encounters and root out intrigue - not spend an hour referencing rules and copying text and doing math and cross-referencing. I ran a session for a new group recently, and even 5th edition's very simple and streamlined character creation took over an hour because none of the players had ever touched a tabletop RPG and every rule and many basic concepts were new to them. In fact I've actually watched potential players get bored and leave the table during character creation who never got to actually try the game.

When a newbie tells you they want to be a dwarf wizard who used to be in the military, it's much better to hand them a sheet and get started than it is to sit down and explain how Vancian spellcasting works and ask them to choose from a vast list of spells with no frame of reference. Handle the rules as they come up - don't say "before we get started, here's a quick overview of how combat works". Do say "you are ambushed by a foul-smelling gang of orc marauders! Roll initiative! Which means..."

In fact, new players are often more creative before they know how the rules work. When you have a list of options you tend to choose from the list, even if the list items are suggestions and not your only choices. A player who has no list of combat options is more likely to say "Can I do this crazy thing?", in which case your job as DM is to reply either "Yes, and here's how that works" or "No, because of X, but you could try Y".

This is all a long way of saying that over the years I've become a big fan of pre-made character sheets. Don't fuss over choices the new player doesn't understand and filling out numbers that have no meaning yet. Hand them a complete level 1 character (or the system equivalent) with a minimum of backstory and get started.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Introducing Aseir (Al'Farok) Aerendgast

We've started a new D&D game here at D4sign! Don't worry, we'll continue playing The Long Game, but we're also playing a game run by fellow D4sign blogger, Mike! Today's post is all about my character for the game, and how he came to be!
Dallas Kasaboski

Saturday, 21 November 2015

The Long Game: Intrigue with a Side of Indigestion

Greetings, fair traveler, and welcome back to D4sign! Let's continue The Long Game! When last we left our adventurers, they had barely sailed their ship to an outpost in Aes, Kalgar's home country. There, they were recuperating, and waiting to speak with Admiral Draksha concerning Kalgar's fate...