Question about D&D

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JackSlack
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby JackSlack » 25 Apr 2013, 21:04

So, here's my D&D question.

Using any version of D&D alignment systems, please answer me:

What alignment would Deadwood main character Al Swearengen be?
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Mums » 27 Apr 2013, 01:34

Okay, so for the last few months I've started to become more and more interested in trying out a tabletop rpg. I've landed on DnD 4th edition, I think the PA podcasts are to be credited for that. So I'm currently reading through the DM's Guide and will start reading the Players Handbook afterward, but I have a few questions and thoughts that maybe someone could give their opinion on.

Firstly, I've picked up a DM screen but realized that it's a screen for essentials. Are the rules any different between those 2 or does the information on screen apply for basic 4ed?

I have a hard time finding people that I would want to play with or that would want to play it, mostly I think it's because of some kind of social stigma regarding D&D. I know two persons right now that want to play and try it out, none of us have played a tabletop rpg before but at least me and one of them feel pretty at home with other board games. How many do you think we should strive for to be? I guess going with just two players and one DMc an work but will probably take away from the experience.

What would your best tips be for a new DM? I'd like to focus on the RP-elements and the world/scenario building. I guess it will mostly evolve from learning how all players work and their preferences so I'll probably have to work it out after a few games and start of with just running the published games with maybe a few alterations.

the DM's Guide talks a lot about having extra encounters in case of players doing things you don't expect. In some cases from the examples it seems like they don't really need to put them in, like if the players are supposed to go to a castle in the forrest and they take a left (instead of going to the right where you've thought that it would be) can't you just switch the place for the castle and have it be to the left? Or would you feel like that is too railroady? Obviously one needs some extra encounters if people do something else in other events. Like if they turn right find the castle and then say "on second thoughts let's turn around and get the hell away from this ominous castle.

I some thoughts about after like two or three games running a campaign that they probably can't make, or basically, they will be screwed no matter what they do, and after they're all out they wake up imprisoned or something, this to make them a bit afraid and realizing they can be killed and also it could work towards creating a nemesis for later games. Do you think that it might backfire and make the players feel like "well, we can't die because if we do our DM will just find a way to save us from the brink of death", or that they might feel like I've cheated them?

Lastly, what tips can you give about enabling for a switch in DM for a few games? Since if we get a continual game going I would like to get in to some of that sweet RP action, at least for a few games?
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Taesarra
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Taesarra » 27 Apr 2013, 04:43

I've yet to actually DM myself but I've been playing DnD 3.5 for about...hell, three years now I think....And I'm starting a campaign of my own with advice from my former DM.

Firstly, there is a difference between Essentials and 4E, but a screen is a screen. You don't have to use one from the edition you're playing unless you wanted the information from the DMly side. If that's the case you may wanna go looking for a 4E screen.

Secondly, always have a plan B. Your players may not always do what you expect/hope they will do. You don't have to plot out every possible route in the world they could take, but have a general idea of what going left would do instead of going right. My DM had a handful of various monsters and encounters premade as a backup if we didn't do what he hoped.

As for ideal party size, I find the idea of running a game for 2-4 people good. And the ideal party size usually dances around 4-6. I'd say since you're all new players, keep the party small. As a DM you can make the world suit only 1-2 people if you'd like, it just takes a little planning. And for your world, start it as you please. Nudge them toward the general direction you hope them to go with suggestions from NPCs and stories of loot, but don't shove them there. Railroading isn't fun.

And yeah, instilling fear of their own mortality is going to happen. But this is more likely to occur in combat than in a jail cell. I'd say don't force it unless it's key to your plot to have them imprisoned, but do it instead to remind them that their actions have consequences. As for saving from the brink of death, it's your call since it's your game. My DM gave us a few freebies when we first started, and even gave us a free resurrection for a party member after we saved a Cleric's life.

Not sure what to say as for a switch, maybe someone more experienced as a DM can help with that.

Also, one last tip: Just have fun, dude :)
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Mums » 27 Apr 2013, 04:56

Thank you =)

Regarding the screen it's about the helpful rules on the backside, to have something to fall back on regarding fall damage and things like that. I've heard from someone that those rules where the same in essentials and 4E but I wasn't sure about his knowledge.
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Tzimisce » 27 Apr 2013, 21:22

I think the screen is similar. I memorized most of it and went screenless most days
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Mums » 28 Apr 2013, 01:49

I guess so too, but it can be nice to have something to lean against for the first sessions
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Tzimisce » 28 Apr 2013, 20:07

Ofcourse, but also winging it is great aswell. Some times rules are overwritten for flavor. How does magical healing affect your characters? I feel that since magical healing snaps bones in place and then instantly heals cut flesh. It would hurt like hell then get itchy.
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Taesarra » 29 Apr 2013, 04:56

Question for the masses.

Starting a 3.5 campaign of my own and first session is this thursday, spent last week helping my players make characters to the homerules (limited magic, using PHB, DMG and the Complete books only, other lil tidbits with DM approval) and I'm just sitting here thinking "I dont want to DM"

I think it might just be nerves, and the fact that one of my players is a former DM of mine. One who's sole joy was bending our characters over the counter with Illithids surrounding us. Note, we were first level when we had our first encounter against an Illithid. Level 4 when we kinda went 'no' and went straight to final boss after nearly being killed by ANOTHER Illithid. This DM also has a talent for making broken characters.

I allowed the Complete books to give my friends options since I basically removed Clerics, Druids, Sorcerers, and Wizards from the world. However, I nearly forgot said former DM's talent and now he's changed his character around from what we made together on Thursday to something different and he won't let me get a preview of his character so that I could plan for this week's session. I don't even want it for combat purposes, but for the mighty boss-ly person to give the characters some prepay incentive to work for them that will be useful to them down the line. I haven't heard from all but one of my players regarding seeing sheets, but I don't mind it so much since I helped make their characters so I know for the most part what could benefit them. But I'm still slightly concerned that he wont even give me a tl;dr version of his character.

Ok. Rambled. Rambling isn't good.

Long into short: How does grow DM backbone and make him show me the darned sheet? Or do I lay down the hand of justice? Or what? Or I dont even know what I'm asking for anymore apart from general advice/help

note: dmitriw, not a word D: i wanted help from you or tom for a reason
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Jamfalcon » 29 Apr 2013, 09:12

I'm pretty picky about what sort of characters I DM for, and I tend to have a variety of rules that vary from campaign to campaign about what can be played (for example, I'm currently running a very heroic, traditional fantasy game, so I've said no to an evil necromancer, and told the players right at the start this wasn't the world for samurai or dragonfire adepts). I think this is definitely a time where I'd be firm, and just tell the player that his character won't be playing in the campaign if you don't know what it is. You need to make sure you're don't come off as antagonistic, because a player that likes to break them game with a grudge against you can ruin a campaign pretty easily. That said, it's completely unreasonable, at least in the sort of game I play, to expect a DM to just be okay with whatever you want to run. I never want to be surprised by my players' abilities or backstories.

It sounds like this player has a very "players vs. DM" perspective, which is pretty much the antithesis of the story-focused adventures I like to run. Perhaps trying to explain to him rationally that you're not trying to figure out ways to kill his character can help if you tell him enough, but in the end I think you may have to just insist he lets you see if he wants to play. I'm not a very assertive person by nature, but when I'm DMing I have make myself be a lot more demanding in situations like this, in order to make the game the way I want it to be.

As for the general DMing nerves, my best advice is just make sure you're very familiar with the material you're running (whether it's a pre-written adventure or something you've created yourself) but go in to it aware of and open to the possibility that everything could go completely different than you've planned, and try to be comfortable with the fact that some changes will need to be made on the fly.

But most of all, don't forget to have fun with it. Good luck! :)
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Mums » 27 May 2013, 10:56

I'm trying to set up a D&D 4E group with me as DM and three friends, none of us have played a tabletop rpg before, but all except one are pretty seasoned gamers. Since I've been the one recruiting them for a group and have been the one pushing I'm basically the one trying to coordinate everything and I'm doing the heavy lifting on most things.
I'm trying to get them to pick classes they want to play and trying to steer them somewhat into a good mix of classes, I'm wondering what type of classes would be viable for a 3 player game, would it work without a defender? Like if they go leader, controller and striker. Is it better to go with a leader a striker and a defender or would that be boring with slow encounters and less interesting mechanics without a controller?
What they've talked about (based on the classes from PHB 1) is Cleric, Rogue and Fighter or substituting the fighter with a Wizard. Any suggestions? Would it be better to look into the classes in PHB 2?
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby DSmaster21 » 08 Jul 2013, 09:14

The DM's guide reccommends that you run a leader, and defender for sure and make a pick between controller and striker.
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Lumar » 19 Aug 2014, 12:04

Hello wise people of the LRR Forms, I'm starting a D&D game with inexperienced players, which is fine since I am also inexperienced at the game. Right now I have the 3.5 book set (something I picked up on a whim when 4.0 came out, and it was cheep). The question I have is should I start with what I have and see how things go or would it be better to upgrade to the latest incarnation of the game, and if so what would you suggest as the bare essentials to run a starting campaign.
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Jamfalcon » 19 Aug 2014, 13:19

3.5 is still a very popular system with a ton of excellent supplements available and a thriving online community, so I absolutely wouldn't feel like you need to pick up 4th or 5th just to keep up. They're different systems with different pros and cons, but since you already have the 3.5 books, I'd say you're fine sticking with them, especially if you're playing with other newcomers.

As for essentials, you can get by with just the Player's Handbook easily enough. The Dungeon Master's Guide is also very, very useful. The Monster Manual is nice, but a good chunk of monsters can be found online. One very useful resource, especially when you're learning, is tehe D20 SRD. It has most of the information from the core books in a linked, searchable format. A few things, like character creation, aren't covered there, but it's an excellent reference resource.
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Re: Question about D&D

Postby Lumar » 19 Aug 2014, 18:10

Thanks Jamfalcon it's good to know that there are still some resources out there. And the site will certainly help since there is only one players handbook for 4 people.
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