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DM Tips, tools -

I have a confession: I always forget how conditions work when I’m running a game. There are fourteen conditions in 5th edition ; blinded, charmed, deafened, frightened, grappled, incapacitated, invisible, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned, prone, restrained, stunned, and unconscious. I lose game time looking up how restrained is different than grappled. Is it worse or basically the same? I never can remember. Recently I sat down and read through all the conditions in an effort to remember them, and I started to see a pattern. The reason I found them confusing was that many conditions where worded similarly with only small...

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DM Tips -

Whats the Hardest Part of Being a DM?   Earlier this week, over on Instagram, I asked this question: What is the hardest part of being a DM? I got hundreds of responses and as I started to sift through and answer them, I realized something. I was seeing responses that could be basically organized into 5 broad categories.   Interpersonal Issues- things like out of character fights, people deliberately derailing the campaign or people acting like they are the central character. Preparation- not enough time and over thinking the prep. Scheduling- How do we all find the time to actually...

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campaigns, DM Tips -

Whether you are a player or a DM, you will eventually have a complaint about your group.Maybe your DM is railroading you. Or he is trying to kill your party (the TPK knuckle tattoos were the first clue). Perhaps your players love to derail your perfectly crafted story arc by fixating on a complete rando NPC. Or they constantly run off into the waiting arms of danger claiming it’s just them “playing their character.” I need to tell you something (Don’t skip this part because it may just save your game and your sanity): The goal of the game is to...

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campaigns, DM Tips, writing -

Where do ideas come from? If you are like me, you struggle to think up interesting and challenging adventures for your gaming table. Even though there are over 100 ideas on the  Critical Dice Instagram page they had to come from somewhere. Honestly, I still get stuck sometimes. Maybe you’re out of ideas today, maybe not, or maybe you’ll get stuck next week. Whatever creative place you’re in, I hope you’ll love these 3 ways to get your creative juices flowing and get your gaming group jumping again.1) Books (non-fantasy)Yep. Books. Paper. E-books. Audio books. No matter how you read them, books are packed with ideas. My...

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campaigns, DM Tips, tools, writing -

Game hooks are a great way to destroy writer's block and get your creative juices flowing! Having trouble creating your next adventure? Got writer's block that even a quad shot espresso won’t fix? This is the book for you.  This is a table of 100 short adventure ideas called game hooks. You can just pick one that tickles your fancy or roll 2d100 and combine the ideas as the framework of your next campaign.  For the last 6 months we've been creating these hooks on our Instagram page (@criticaldice) and now the list is finally complete. We complied all the posts into an...

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