6 Ways to Save Your Campaign from the Holidays

This week is Canadian Thanksgiving and my campaign is taking a week off. Halloween, U.S. Thanksgiving, Christmas and the New Year are all right around the corner too. Holidays are awesome, but they can create challenges for GMs running a scheduled campaign in the weeks at the end of the year. Today on the Campaign Trail I’m providing 6 ways to save your campaign from the holidays.

4 Lessons Learned by a Rookie DM Before My First Session

This column is for rookie DMs by a rookie DM. As I’ve been scouring the Internet for tips and tricks to help me prepare for my first session, I noticed that there is a lot of instruction available. Much of it is great information, and will likely be very helpful. But there’s a distinct lack of narrative-based advice.

A lot of experienced DMs forget what it’s like to be new to this whole gig. Sometimes very well meaning Dungeon Masters assume a certain level of knowledge or experience when talking about the craft. “The Misadventures of a Rookie DM” will be different. It will be different because it’s a first-hand account of my giving dungeon mastering a try for the first time. No prior experience. I’ll tell some stories, and let’s see what we can learn together. Hopefully, I’ll make some mistakes so that you won’t have to.

Exploding Dice!

I’ve been play-testing adding Exploding Dice as a house-rule to my game. Exploding dice are when a player or GM rolls the maximum on a die for damage, they then can roll that die again and the new die roll result is added to the original. This can be done once as I discuss in this article, or sometimes this is repeated for every time that a maximum is rolled (chain reaction). The reason to do this is because:

4 Tips for Running Published Adventures

If you are playing D&D, Pathfinder or any of the many other tabletop roleplaying games, there are some pretty good published adventures out there. Who are published adventures for? Anyone really… first time gamemasters, world builders looking for an adventure to run in their campaign or somebody just looking to have something to play Friday night. This week on the Campaign Trail I’ll look at 4 tips to help you run a published adventure the whole table will love.

5 Ways to Save Your Campaign from the Summer

This week on the Campaign Trail, I’m on vacation and writing from the family cottage. Summer is awesome, but it can create challenges to running your scheduled campaign each week, month or whenever. I thought I’d look at some ways to save your campaign from the pitfalls that GMs can face in the summer months. Keep reading for tips on how to keep your campaign alive through vacations, students moving home, weekend camping trips, family BBQs and more.

Stop Rolling All those Dice!

The most crucial aspect of role playing is the story, but we waste a lot of time with administration of the game.  And the most time consuming aspect of some role playing games is ROLL playing.

I have been in some games where the dice are rolled at the end of almost every query made by a player; right after a player explains what his character is attempting he is asked to roll a die. It was very frustrating, and I could see the life force drain from the new player’s face. Sometimes, we may find ourselves in that same scenario; where we are rolling the dice for everything that comes, because that’s what the rules say. Or the GM believes that is how the game is played. Rolling the dice can be fun but we should start looking at ways to minimize dice rolls.