‘If you want a remote Dungeons & Dragons player during these grim times, let me know. Happy to make like Geri and re-join the band.’ My brother WhatsApped me this message on a Sunday morning at the end of March last year. It was the day before Boris Johnson announced a national lockdown. Three days … Continue reading Our final session: playing Dungeons & Dragons in a pandemic
5th edition is simpler than previous editions of D&D, but it still has considerable depth built into its ruleset. Even after playing for half a decade, there are niche rules that still catch me out from time to time. That’s what this post is all about. This week, I’m mainly looking at Chapters 1 to … Continue reading Core Rules You Never Knew
The next official 5e adventure, The Wild Beyond the Witchlight, is set for release in two months’ time. It has been promoted as a ‘wickedly whimsical’ trip to the Feywild aimed at characters of levels 1–8. As part of this year’s D&D Live, Mica Burton chatted about the adventure with Chris Perkins, who said this: … Continue reading How to run D&D with no combat
A couple of months ago, I ran a Twitter poll asking ‘Which of these is the most annoying spell in 5e D&D?’ The options I gave were banishment, counterspell, and forcecage, with a fourth option for ‘something else’. It is striking that out of 66 votes, more than half were for counterspell. I can’t say … Continue reading Nine reasons why counterspell is not as annoying as you think
7 June marks one year since my first post on the site. And what a year it’s been! I want to say thank you to everyone who has commented on, shared, or subscribed to the site. What started as a vague idea last summer has since grown into something that brings me much joy. I … Continue reading Happy birthday, Scroll for Initiative!
What type of DM are you? Find out in this article!
How do your sessions start? Many groups find it helpful to start with a recap of the previous session. But who should deliver it? The DM – or the players? Option 1: the player recap In some groups, summarizing the previous session is a job for one of the players. There’s a lot to be … Continue reading How to nail a fantastic session recap
As with the term ‘rules lawyer’, there is considerable disagreement about what ‘metagaming’ actually means. The 3rd edition Dungeon Master’s Guide says that metagame thinking is ‘any time the players base their characters’ actions on logic that depends on the fact that they’re playing a game’. It gives the example of a player who assumes … Continue reading Metagaming is dumb: how to fix it
In D&D, playing a spellcaster is fun – as a player. As a DM? Not so much. Sometimes, in fact, running an NPC spellcaster can be a real headache. Fundamentally, NPC spellcasters use the same spellcasting rules as player characters. They have a spell list. They have spell slots, sometimes lots of them. But is … Continue reading Fixing NPC spellcasters
D&D is more popular than it has ever been. Part of the reason for this is fifth edition itself, which in many ways streamlined the game without losing the flavour that made it ‘feel’ like D&D. I am generally very happy with the changes 5th edition made to the game but feel that skill checks … Continue reading Hack the game: improved skills in 5e