Category Archives: Play Advice

Dungeon Master Tips: The Power of a Second Wave

As your players get more experienced, they get very good at destroying the monsters you set in front of them. Unless it’s a surprise attack, players are great at identifying the main targets and using their swords and spells to … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, Play Advice | 2 Comments

Preparing for Tomb of Annihilation

Tomb of Annihilation is a big book, isn’t it? It feels really heavy. I mean, it should weigh about the same as Storm King’s Thunder, but for some reason it feels heavier to me. Guess what I start running this … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, D&D Adventurers League, Play Advice, Tomb of Annihilation | 7 Comments

Examining Phandelver: Getting Back on Track

My latest session of Lost Mine of Phandelver found the player characters in the hills, having run out of clues and not sure of where to go next. Whenever a mystery needs to be solved for the plot to progress, … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, Lost Mine of Phandelver, Play Advice | 3 Comments

Greyhawk Campaign: Scouting the Lands of Iuz

My ongoing Greyhawk D&D campaign continued last night with the characters scouting the borderlands of Iuz. Iuz, for those of you unaware with the World of Greyhawk is a land ruled by an evil demi-god (Iuz!) that borders on one … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, Greyhawk, Play Advice, Session Report | 2 Comments

Examining Phandelver: Side Quests

One of the excellent aspects of Lost Mine of Phandelver is that it includes a number of side-quests. These are quests which don’t advance the main storyline that you can get from NPCs you meet. Side quests allow a Dungeon … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, Design, Lost Mine of Phandelver, Play Advice | 4 Comments

Dungeon Mastering Tips: Hey! That wasn’t in the adventure!

I run a lot of published adventures. I’ve run most of the official D&D adventures, most of the D&D Adventurers League adventures, and a few adventures I’ve acquired from other publishers. And one thing happens to me again and again: … Continue reading

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Dungeon Master Tips: Funny Voices and Roleplaying NPCs

There are people in this world who are great at role-playing NPCs. They imbue the characters they assume with passion, vitality and bring forth the true essence of their personalities. That’s not me. I do funny voices and occasionally remember … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, Play Advice | 2 Comments

Examining Passive Perception and Opposed Checks

In Dungeons & Dragons, there are many times you don’t want the monsters to see you. The rules for hiding are written deliberately to leave a lot of power in the hands of the Dungeon Master. Basically, if the DM … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 5E, Play Advice | 2 Comments

The Total Party Kill I Remember Best

I occasionally think of myself as a “Killer DM” – you’ll find it on my profile at RPG Geek, for instance. However, when you get down to it, I don’t kill that many player characters. The fact is, I’m far … Continue reading

Posted in D&D, D&D 3E, D&D 5E, Play Advice | 3 Comments

Running the Sunless Citadel: The Grove Level

While the upper level of The Sunless Citadel presents a typical dungeon-delving experience, the lower level shifts gears into one of horror. The concept of evil plant-creatures is already creepy, and the body horror of the transformation of Sir Braford … Continue reading

Posted in D&D 5E, Play Advice, Tales of the Yawning Portal | 5 Comments