Guides for a New Young DM?
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  1. #1
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    Guides for a New Young DM?

    I've been running D&D for a friend's family lately, and the 12-year-old daughter wants to run some games for her friends. She's got the germ of a campaign idea (assemble three dragon-related artifacts), but wants to know how to design adventures. Of course I've said I'll work with her on this, but I'd like to point her to some good advice on the web as well. Can anyone recommend any blog posts, articles, or videos aimed at helping a brand-new GM design and/or run her first adventure?
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    I don't know any guides geared specifically to young DM's but I do know that when I was starting out I found this: http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthr...t=adjudicating to be very useful.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jayoungr View Post
    I've been running D&D for a friend's family lately, and the 12-year-old daughter wants to run some games for her friends. She's got the germ of a campaign idea (assemble three dragon-related artifacts), but wants to know how to design adventures. Of course I've said I'll work with her on this, but I'd like to point her to some good advice on the web as well. Can anyone recommend any blog posts, articles, or videos aimed at helping a brand-new GM design and/or run her first adventure?
    Matt Colville on YouTube. Videos all about being a dungeon master, including coming up with and running adventures.
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    The Angry GM's book is perfect for this, if you're ok with implied swearing ($%#&@! and the like)
    https://theangrygm.com/game-angry-book-launch/
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  5. #5
    Matt Mercer has some how to videos on YouTube that are Fantastic

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    Matt Colville gives the best advice (Mercer is good too; personally I'd avoid Angry), but I think the best thing she can do is take a look at how the old masters designed adventures. B2 Keep on the Borderlands for dungeons, and X1 Isle of Dread for wilderness, are two good places to start. U1 Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh is also worth looking at, but omits the home base, whereas B2 and X1 pay lots of attention to the home base element. Orange B3 Palace of the Silver Princess is also a good tutorial module.

    She could also look at some of the free adventures at basicfantasy.org that riff off those, eg J N Neal's Monkey Isle (X1) and Chaotic Caves (B2), Fortress of the Iron Duke (in Fortress Tower & Tomb) riffs off B3, and has that romance/betrayal element from B3 the chicks dig. Groovy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by S'mon View Post
    Matt Colville gives the best advice (Mercer is good too; personally I'd avoid Angry), but I think the best thing she can do is take a look at how the old masters designed adventures. B2 Keep on the Borderlands for dungeons, and X1 Isle of Dread for wilderness, are two good places to start. U1 Sinister Secret of Saltmarsh is also worth looking at, but omits the home base, whereas B2 and X1 pay lots of attention to the home base element. Orange B3 Palace of the Silver Princess is also a good tutorial module.

    She could also look at some of the free adventures at basicfantasy.org that riff off those, eg J N Neal's Monkey Isle (X1) and Chaotic Caves (B2), Fortress of the Iron Duke (in Fortress Tower & Tomb) riffs off B3, and has that romance/betrayal element from B3 the chicks dig. Groovy.
    Also In Search of The Unknown. In Search Of The Unknown is my favorite "my first D&D" type module/adventure. Anyway personally I'd give her the same one piece of advice I give all GMs of any age and experience level: smile knowingly. Just smile knowingly. No matter what you've goofed up or how badly, just smile knowingly like it's all going according to plan. From a twelve year old girl's friends to grognards with 30+ years of dungeon delving experience, D&D players are must more likely to believe that anything that doesn't mad up or doesn't make sense is some kind of sinister plot against the party than simple human error, so long as you smile knowingly.
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    There is literally a book called the Dungeon Master's Guide. And the best thing is, you probably already own it! The abbreviated Basic version is also a great starting point.

    Experience is the best teacher.

    At dmsguild.com: GM Lent
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ath-kethin View Post
    There is literally a book called the Dungeon Master's Guide. And the best thing is, you probably already own it! The abbreviated Basic version is also a great starting point.

    Experience is the best teacher.
    This. Really, this is all you need. Rather than reading lots of how-to guides, browse the DMG and then watch some recorded live-play streams.

    I recommend anything run by Chris Perkins. A while back, Chris Perkins recorded some videos where he ran a game for the Robot Chicken writers that included voice over explaining what he was doing and giving other advice. The purpose was to help new DMs see how to run a game and give advice. It was for 4th edition, but I think they are still excellent and applicable.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HA92_Hp04Sk


    Another good one to watch is the Celebrity UK game with a group of new players, so he is explaining the rules as he runs the game. Again, it is for 4e, but still worth a watch. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FeiNEsLElA

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    I disagree about the Dungeon Masters Guide. The 5e DMG is really not a guide for dungeon masters. Its a pile of optional rules.

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