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D&D General Best DM Screen

Burnside

Space Jam Confirmed
I have to ask - the spray bottle on the table - was that to keep the cat off or spritz one of the players when they tried to do something dumb that’d get the party killed? I needed the latter at some of the games I ran...

lol!

It looks like they have a wet-erase grid on the table, so it's probably for wiping off the marker
 

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el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
I have to ask - the spray bottle on the table - was that to keep the cat off or spritz one of the players when they tried to do something dumb that’d get the party killed? I needed the latter at some of the games I ran...
I still have one in my current game room! It is for quickly wiping off the battlemat, of course! There is a stained dishrag that goes with it.
 

jasper

Rotten DM
I think that the best screen serves two purposes-

1. The DM's side. This is obvious. The original 1e DMs screen had everything you could need. It was invaluable for a game so reliant on tables and matrices.

2. The player's side. You can't overlook this. For the most part, players aren't looking at your screen for information. But it does set a mood. And nothing has ever set the D&D mood like the original screen. Sure, there was the iconic Otus piece (spear, critter) that people still remember. But if you show either of the two panels to anyone who played at that time, it triggers something deep and primal, from the hours, days, and weeks of seeing that image and thinking about it, and having it deeply associated with D&D.

The Trampier two-panel piece may not be the best image in D&D, but it is certainly one of the most iconic images. And that's not wasted space.
I loved the old 4 panel, 2 panel screens for 1E. Today I make my own. Inside is DM information. Outside is player information.
 

el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Here is my current screen front and back:

170914035_124344883002363_4591133953308217486_n.jpg
170362886_304306434455523_2562466382928525158_n.jpg
 



el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
It is a store bought folder-thing - made of faux-leather plastic with built in sleeves. I found the art online with a creative commons license and had them print it out on nice stock at office depot and slipped it in the front. The sheets on the DM side came with the product.

I might try another really homemade screen now that I am running 5E regularly and am more familiar with it. I got this screen when I first got back into D&D and was not sure how engaged I'd get.
 


I've gotten a lot of mileage out of my The World's Greatest Screen from Hammerdog Games. I had used the Savage Worlds Customizable GM Screen for some time, but I like 4 panels vs. 3 panels so I was very happy when I found TWGS. I used the landscape format one, then left it in my car on several hot summer days in a row. Like any thin plastic, I saw the hinges were cracked when I took it out; I cursed and bought another one I've taken better care of. On the other hand, I taped the hinges with packing tape and the damaged screen has held up remarkably well considering the abuse it's been through.

I also own one of the TWGS Mini screens, and I've never seen anything similar. It's ideal for certain gaming areas, where I've had to use tiny coffee tables; for example, when I used to run weekly games in a coffee shop, the Mini screen was ideal. And the hinges on the Mini are minimal and seem to be less vulnerable to cracking due to extreme heat.
 



jasper

Rotten DM
Was what I figured. Youd have to be wearing glasses so thick at high noon they could double as Archimdes Death Ray to read it from all the way across the table.
The other option is just make them a copy of the players sheets and hand it to them. The only one not in the book the Spell Cost for all the spell which require components.
 

The other option is just make them a copy of the players sheets and hand it to them. The only one not in the book the Spell Cost for all the spell which require components.
Tried that. Players look at once, spill beer on them or toss aside never to heard from again...until I comb through my notes that is.
 

pming

Hero
Hiya!

Well, other than "custom home made"... I'm going with Hackmaster 4th Edition. Has ALMOST absolutely everything I use as a GM during a game session, immediately before a game session, or right after a game session. The only think I wish it had that it doesn't is the tables for "Horse Traits and Markings". Yes...I use that a lot; anytime a horse becomes "important" to a situation...which is, surprisingly, quite often! I mean, the PC just bought a horse and is riding out of town when he is surrounded by a pack of hungry street dogs, all barking and nipping.... yup, I need to know how this horse reacts. The PC decides to go shopping for a new horse... definitely need them then! PC sneaks over to steal a horse from a camp of bandits nearby? Yup...I need that info! :)

But other than the horse thing... the HM4 GM Screen is AMAZING! 😍

^_^

Paul L. Ming
 

Hiya!

Well, other than "custom home made"... I'm going with Hackmaster 4th Edition. Has ALMOST absolutely everything I use as a GM during a game session, immediately before a game session, or right after a game session. The only think I wish it had that it doesn't is the tables for "Horse Traits and Markings". Yes...I use that a lot; anytime a horse becomes "important" to a situation...which is, surprisingly, quite often! I mean, the PC just bought a horse and is riding out of town when he is surrounded by a pack of hungry street dogs, all barking and nipping.... yup, I need to know how this horse reacts. The PC decides to go shopping for a new horse... definitely need them then! PC sneaks over to steal a horse from a camp of bandits nearby? Yup...I need that info! :)

But other than the horse thing... the HM4 GM Screen is AMAZING! 😍

^_^

Paul L. Ming
Thats the only time Ive ever loved a post I think. 100% agree. Not the depths I would go to in my game anymore but Ive been on both sides of that scenario. I still remember getting the nag, both in game (and in RL) as a PC. Sounds like you pay alot of attention to detail in your game, props. I've never played Hackmaster (Kenzer, Knights of the Dinner Table right?), but if the horse table is all its lacking, it sounds great.
 


I have a folder with player info that I put out each session. It only has one copy of everything and stays with me, but is available for anybody to go through.
I learned years ago if players take their characters and folders they will inevitably leave them home next session, or worse, lose them so I keep them as well. Not so bad nowadays because there's usually a digital copy but years ago it was a huge pain if someone lost there character as most times there wasn't another.
 




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