D&D 5E People don't read the 5E DMG for a reason

pogre

Legend
We covered this, its one less book to sell. While folks aint reading the DMG, they are buying it...
Sure. It's a long term strategy to get more DMs going in the game. Like I said upthread, it is my impression there is a 5e DM shortage. Hasbro probably has the numbers, or at least a much better idea than I do. More DMs, means more games and players, and further spread of D&D. Long term that is better for their brand and profits.

All with the caveat that I am basing this on what may be a flawed assumption.
 

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Elvish Lore

Explorer
See, my thing is if you want to solve the "DM crisis" (I don't think there is one really, most people are just lazy), combine the PHB and the DMG into one book and about 1000% more people will actually at least skim if not read the DM part of the book. Don't put in another hurdle for folks interested in running D&D to have to buy another textbook and read all of it to believe they're ready to run a game.

Yea, I know... WotC wants to sell books... they're not going to get rid of the DMG. But make it incomplete, a taste of things, and people can then spend money on ancillary books (or, really, D&D Beyond micro-supplements).
 

payn

He'll flip ya...Flip ya for real...
Sure. It's a long term strategy to get more DMs going in the game. Like I said upthread, it is my impression there is a 5e DM shortage. Hasbro probably has the numbers, or at least a much better idea than I do. More DMs, means more games and players, and further spread of D&D. Long term that is better for their brand and profits.

All with the caveat that I am basing this on what may be a flawed assumption.
Its 20% according to Hasbro. So, take whatever they say is the number of players and there you go.
 

It’s fine. Lots of useful tidbits. The best dungeon I ever made was from the random generator near the back end of the book.

I think calling it a “core” book is a mistake. Core implies it is essential for running/playing the game, and the only book you need for 5E is the PHB.
 


el-remmen

Moderator Emeritus
Most people only read what they think they need too in order to play. The DMG mostly isn’t necessary other than a reference book for many people so it goes mostly unread.
That's why I haven't read it and have only referenced it as (rarely) needed. I never read the 3E one either or even BOUGHT the 3.5 one! (despite running 3.5(ish) games). :p
 
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Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
It’s fine. Lots of useful tidbits. The best dungeon I ever made was from the random generator near the back end of the book.

I think calling it a “core” book is a mistake. Core implies it is essential for running/playing the game, and the only book you need for 5E is the PHB.
That basically the problem.

The essential aspects of DM knowledge were either reduced to a level that they were barely usable or completely left out.
Because the DMG was filled to the brim with nonessential nostalgia tool, magic item and treasure rules, and dressing for an official background for a standard pseudo-FR setting.

All this should have been shifted to 4th and 5th book.
 

Clint_L

Hero
5E wasnt supposed to be someones first RPG, or game mastering experience.
One of the first things they published for it was Lost Mine of Phandelver, which is widely considered the best starter set they've made for any edition. The updated DM's Guide could have more stuff like that - little adventures that gradually get a bit more complex and explore different styles of play.

Edit: I would argue that "Lost Mine" is a much better DM's Guide than the actual DM's Guide. Certainly for new players!
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
One of the first things they published for it was Lost Mine of Phandelver, which is widely considered the best starter set they've made for any edition. The updated DM's Guide could have more stuff like that - little adventures that gradually get a bit more complex and explore different styles of play.

Edit: I would argue that "Lost Mine" is a much better DM's Guide than the actual DM's Guide. Certainly for new players!
The issue with LMOP is that it more or less was a great starting adventure... for people who wouldn't actually be new players.

LMOP is a stating adventure for Grognards. The 5e DMG is a good DMG for Grognards. Grognards don't "need" LMOP & the DMG 5e offered.

That essentially was the issue. The 5e DMG wasn't designed to teach you how to play D&D. The 5e DMG was designed to teach veterans DMs how to convert to 5e. That's one reason why many people didn't read it
 

Clint_L

Hero
The issue with LMOP is that it more or less was a great starting adventure... for people who wouldn't actually be new players.

LMOP is a stating adventure for Grognards. The 5e DMG is a good DMG for Grognards. Grognards don't "need" LMOP & the DMG 5e offered.

That essentially was the issue. The 5e DMG wasn't designed to teach you how to play D&D. The 5e DMG was designed to teach veterans DMs how to convert to 5e. That's one reason why many people didn't read it
I don't really understand why you claim that Phandelver is designed for veterans. It offers a simplified version of the rules, with pre-made characters, and constant tips for how to run encounters. I would say that it is a very good starter set, and it seems to have been very effective at bringing new players into the game, given that 5e has been flooded with new players and many of them started with it.

What makes it great is that it is also good for veterans, not because of the simplified rules, but because it is an outstanding little sandbox adventure world and wonderful little 4-5 game campaign.

I also don't follow your argument that the DMG is designed to teach veteran DM's how to convert to 5e. Can you give an example of what you mean? I would argue that the problems with the DM's guide go right back to the first version of the DM's Guide for AD&D, which was the least essential of the core books even back then.
 

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