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Game Master Tips

Nerdarchy > Game Master Tips (Page 9)
5E D&D Halloween ghost bar

D&D Ideas — Halloween

Welcome once again to the weekly newsletter. This week’s topic is Halloween, which we discussed in our live chat. We hangout every Monday evening at 8 p.m. EST on Nerdarchy Live to talk about D&D, RPGs, gaming, life and whatever nerdy stuff comes up. You can get the Nerdarchy Newsletter delivered to your inbox each week, along with updates and info on how to game with Nerdarchy, by signing up here. Speaking of Halloween we treat our awesome Patreon supporters with treats throughout the month including automatic entry into giveaways for RPG swag. We package up $50 or more in games and accessories every month, not just in October. No tricks! Patreon supporters also receive exclusive magic item cards and maps, digital books with content for Game Masters and players alike, opportunities to game with Nerdarchy and more. Check us out and discover the tier that fits best for you here.

5E D&D Kobold Press Tome of Beasts 2

Surprise, Entertain and Terrify 5E D&D Heroes with Tome of Beasts 2 from Kobold Press

Kobold Press knocks it out of the park once again with a collection of over 400 new monsters for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Tome of Beasts 2 follows a tradition of stunning monster books from the publisher filled with creatures to surprise, entertain and terrify 5E D&D characters and their players. I couldn’t wait to tear through my copy of the book along with Tome of Beasts 2: Lairs for a big boost of imagination and ideas for incorporating new creatures into my own adventures. So let’s get into it.

5E D&D bytopia kobolds worldbuilding

Creating 5E D&D Bytopia Kobolds Through Worldbuilding

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted look closer at the craven reptilian humanoids that worship evil dragons as demigods and serve them as minions and toadies in fifth edition Dungeons & dragons. Kobolds remain a staple of D&D from the very beginning and while their appearance changed over the decades from rat-dog humanoids into a more draconic form they’re still small, crafty and dangerous in large numbers. Volo’s Guide to Monsters punches these little buggers with lots of lore and rich material to strengthen their position in the 5E D&D multiverse and Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything all but guarantees a surge in popularity so I’d better get to work reimagining kobolds for players and Dungeon Masters alike with some razzle dazzle.

Top 5 Ways to Stop Your RPG from Getting Boring

It’s not unheard of for Game Masters to experience what authors refer to as a “sagging middle” and grow tired of preparing material for the same world time and again for players. And players may become frustrated when they hear a GM say they don’t really prepare and instead let players run with things, or become jealous when a GM states they’ve over prepared while you’re struggling to keep things engaging. None of these need be the case! Let’s discuss five ways to avoid a boring middle of your tabletop roleplaying game campaign.

5E D&D Deception skill check Stealth skill challenge

5 Sleight of Hand Skill Challenges for 5E D&D

Salutations, nerds, and we’re back with another 5 skill challenges for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. This time it’s Sleight of Hand’s turn in the skill challenge spotlight and I’m going to be honest with you, this one was kind of difficult because Sleight of Hand is one of those 5E D&D skills characters typically instigate themselves by pickpocketing or trying to pilfer small objects in plain view. However, I wasn’t about to skip this one just because it’s difficult. Be prepared though, because things are about to get a little bit wacky and I’m hoping you laugh as hard as I did about it.

5E D&D nerdarchy dark paths

D&D Ideas — Starting a Campaign

Welcome once again to the weekly newsletter. This week’s topic is starting a campaign, which we discussed in our live chat. We hangout every Monday evening at 8 p.m. EST on Nerdarchy Live to talk about D&D, RPGs, gaming, life and whatever nerdy stuff comes up. You can get the Nerdarchy Newsletter delivered to your inbox each week, along with updates and info on how to game with Nerdarchy, by signing up here. Speaking of starting a campaign our Dark Paths starts down a new path for our monthly rewards and presents a new being of malediction each month to exert their malignment on your Fifth Edition worlds. Each of these entry points can kick off a new campaign or creep into your existing adventures. It’s been a blast developing this new content and playing these adventures in our monthly one shots with Patreon supporters who get exclusive sneak peeks and playtest opportunities prior to receiving their rewards and before they’re available to anyone else through Nerdarchy the Store. Become part of the Nerdarchy community and get early access to new products, live chats and gameplays, our exclusive Discord channel, giveaways and more right here.

Everyone Knows 5E D&D is the Best RPG. What This Post Presupposes Is…Maybe It Isn’t?

We think about games a lot around here. It’s no surprise since we built Nerdarchy as a tabletop game centric business from the very beginning. Every single day we’re creating and sharing our news, view and homebrews here on the website, on one or both of our two YouTube channels and through our Patreon. Primarily we focus our efforts on fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons for several reasons. We all love the game and 5E D&D in particular. It also happens to enjoy unprecedented success and attention worldwide, something our audience clearly gravitates towards along with untold others. But of course it’s not the only game around nor the only game we play. And after some soul searching and several long conversations and introspections it’s not even my favorite version of the game. How can this be? Let’s get into it.

Tasha's Cauldron of Everything

Adherence to Canon — Fast Tracks for the Fastidious Game Master

Isn’t it a delight to crack open a new roleplaying game setting book for the first time? It’s wonderful fun discovering how the creators have reinterpreted classic tropes or generated genuinely unique ideas to delight their audience. I enjoy the fictional timelines, legendary people, ancient origin stories and so much more. It’s a pleasant waltz through someone else’s imagination and it’s inspiring! Although when it comes time to Game Master a campaign or write a new product for the setting it can be agonizing to get every little detail correct. Not long into the endeavor I invariably find myself wondering: How will I keep all of this lore in my head?

RPG sound music out of the box girl with the dragon snafu

Make Your RPG Epic with the Power of Sound and Music

A scream shatters the midnight quiet. The distant peel of thunder forebodes a coming rainstorm, welcome among the red rocks of the desert. Cloth rustles against leather, metal occasional clinking as the merchant shuffles through her pack. These present scenarios, each evocative and distinct from the next. Whether it’s Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder or any other tabletop roleplaying game each session is just as much improv theater of the mind as it is a codified game. Fans of live plays like those found on Critical Role, Nerdarchy Live and any number of other streams know the value of evocative descriptions and setting the scene. And when it comes to immersing players few senses are as captivating as the sense of sound.

5E D&D endings shadows

Threaten Your 5E D&D World with Horror Monsters If You Dare

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted dismiss the abstraction of hit points and delve deeper into monsters who don’t care how tough your character is in combat and other dangerous situations. Instead these threats target something much more precious — and difficult to recover. Monsters causing ability score damage, loss or reduction in 5E D&D are few and far between and thankfully so since recovering from these effects ain’t no walk in the park. At the same time they represent a different kind of horror and a campaign highlighting these awful creatures might just make players never look at things the same way ever again. So let’s get into it.

D&D Wizards

Play Your Next 5E D&D Game as a Blood Magic Expert

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted tap into blood magic and discuss whether the concept is evil by its very nature when it comes to fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Also Ted crushes one of the best video intros to date, so it’s worth a watch for this alone. But did you know Nerdarchy already put together our ideas for a 5E D&D blood magic expert? In fact there’s more than one iteration of blood magic floating around. So let’s get into it.

5 Religion Skill Challenges for 5E D&D

Salutations, nerds! Buckle up and cross your fingers I don’t burst into flames about three quarters of the way through typing this one because today we’re going to be talking about Religion skill challenges for fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons. Per the usual these are meant to be momentary stumbling blocks for 5E D&D characters and chances for them to show off their skills rather than the hooks to some other grand adventure, though as we all know the plan never survives first contact with the players. That said, get ready and try not to get smote.

D&D Ideas — Hordes and Hoards

Welcome once again to the weekly newsletter. This week’s topic is hordes and hoards, which we discussed in our live chat. We hangout every Monday evening at 8 p.m. EST on Nerdarchy Live to talk about D&D, RPGs, gaming, life and whatever nerdy stuff comes up. Speaking of hordes and hoards Friend in Need includes a hoard even the greediest adventurers may not dare to claim while Devil’s Hospitality puts a hoard of diabolical creatures between the party and eternal damnation in Out of the Box. These and 53 other dynamic encounters ready to drop right into your game continue flying off the shelves and out of the warehouse. We love seeing people showing off their copies and sharing awesome stories from their gaming tables so keep it up! Check it out and add Out of the Box to your collection of awesome RPG stuff here.

Never Let Them See Your 5E D&D Mobile Archer Coming

Over at Nerdarchy the YouTube channel Nerdarchists Dave and Ted reveal the secrets to challenging various highly specialized and powerful fifth edition Dungeons & Dragons character builds. Like so many RPG players we’ve been brainstorming and theorycrafting character builds for years and years because frankly it’s fun to talk about these things with fellow nerds. In the video Dave and Ted cover five different 5E D&D character build concepts with tips for Dungeon Masters on how to provide adequate challenges for these characters to overcome. But the one left on the planning room floor is the one I’m most interested in exploring so yay for me! Let’s get into what it means to be a long range mobile archer.

5E D&D mason's tools

Are You Ready to Rock? | Tool Time with Mason’s Tools in 5E D&D

Masonry is everywhere in Dungeons & Dragons. From elven spires towering into the sky to ornate dwarven halls literally carved into the mountains the stonework of fantasy worlds are staples of the genre. Before we begin let’s remember while proficiencies are a core mechanic of fifth edition D&D, tool proficiencies don’t really fit neatly into the idea of proficiencies when it relates to skills and are more nebulous by design. When playing a character with an intrinsic tool proficiency, make sure to talk with your Dungeon Master about how you want that to look for your character. And with that out of the way, let’s talk about mason’s tools in 5E D&D!

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