The Realms Resurgent

Welcome to my little corner of the Realms. For stuff having to do with PC creation or the campaign setting, go to the Main Page in the wiki.

If you are still reading, I will guess that you missed the link above. That’s OK as I am going to talk about some stuff.

Not long ago, I read an article that suggested that GMs should discuss their campaigns with players before the campaigns start. The idea was that giving players an idea what the game will be about let’s players make informed decisions on what types of PCs to play. That knowledge also informs players about possible PC personalities. For example, if I say I am creating a campaign looking for proactive heroes who help the “common man”, then it would be somewhat silly to bring a mercenary PC to the table since doing so might mean for less roleplay.

That said, I have tried to detail this on the main page of the wiki. If anything is not clear, ask me questions.

Now, about your GM… I have been GMing off and on (mostly on) for over 15 years. I have probably run more D&D (3.5 and 5e combined) than anything else, with Dresden Files RPG (and other FATE games) coming in second. I am also familiar with D&D 4E and remember parts of 2nd edition AD&D. I do NOT subscribe to the thought that any single system is the best system. Instead, I believe one should match the system and the setting together.

Over the aforementioned decade+ of GMing, I have learned that a D&D campaign is a cooperative effort both on the part of all the players as well as the DM. We have an unspoken social contract. After reading an article about a formal contract (here), I think it would be worth discussing what players are looking for before we start play.

To start that discussion, here are two thoughts…

1) Electronics at the table: Please avoid excessive web browsing, smart phone, & tablet use during the game. Playing other games and engaging in other conversations is rude to the rest of the table. It also wastes time as the group will have to stop what they are doing to explain to you what you missed. (This is true even when your PC is ‘absent’ as the group loses the option to say, “we tell him what we learned.”) Using a device or computer for books, character sheet, dice, or anything related to the game is perfectly acceptable.

2) Assumptions are not my fault: If your PC makes an action based on an assumption, that’s too bad. Years ago, I stopped listening to, “But if I knew…” and the many variations of that statement. If you are not sure, ask a question. If you honestly feel that I made the mistake, make a note of it, and bring it up after the session. We’ll figure something out then. Otherwise, we will continue with play with the action having occurred. That said, I do not believe a GM should withhold information that a PC would have simply because the player did not “ask the right question”. I will always try to inform you of facts your PC would know. However, as I am human and as prone to errors as the rest of the human race, you should always feel free to ask questions as I am always happy to answer.

In terms of style… My philosophy is that a DM should be “tough but fair”. My chief priority is to entertain you. I believe that players receive the most long-term satisfaction when they know they have earned everything they have. Because of that, I actually believe I do a disservice if I pull punches. On the other hand, if I write something that TPKs the party, I have failed as a DM. I will endeavor to walk that line carefully. All I ask is that you trust me when I say that I am not out to get you. In the same vein, I trust that players are at the table to entertain each other and me.

Part of my philosophy on DMing, on entertaining all of you, is this: I do not believe every encounter should be appropriately matched to the party’s level. It is up to all of you to determine when you can kick someone’s ass and when they can kick yours. So, don’t expect to get the same array of challenges all the time. Some will be easy, and some quite difficult. Some will be much worse than that, so talking is sometimes a good option. Think of it this way… I Report; You Decide.

On the non-combat side of things, I feel that many fights should be optional. I like the idea of people role-playing their way out of having to fight. On the other hand, I also like people picking a fight because it seems like the “in character” thing to do. Ultimately, I suppose that what I like the most is seeing a player make a decision in-character and sticking to it.

With regard to rules, I try to be reasonable while following the RAW (with some exceptions). I do this as I feel predictability & constancy with the rules is a benefit to players as they know what to expect which lets them plan ahead. So, please feel free to ask for clarifications sooner rather than later. I am happy to answer questions as I want the game to be as successful as you do.

The biggest exception I make is with XP. I prefer to use XP instead of milestones. I should point out that XP is given for overcoming challenges. Sometimes, this means combat, but sometimes not. In fact, I typically place a premium on XP earned through cleverness and/or diplomacy. So, while killing every enemy will earn you XP, negotiating or outsmarting enemies will earn more as it has a small premium added to it. (Similarly, killing your 100th orc earns you less than killing your first orc as repetitive tasks teach us less.)

Anyhow, if you made it this far: Thank You. This entire page ended up being so much longer than I planned, and I appreciate your taking the time to read it.

Campaign Status: Recruiting is on hiatus as of 5/6/16 as I have 0 players. Eventually, this campaign will be in the Kennesaw, Acworth, or Woodstock areas. Interested parties can message me through OP or fan the campaign for details.

The Realms Resurgent

mrroderick locvil_rogue