Storytelling, Tabletop and Pop Culture
Dungeons and Dragons is one of the most popular Tabletop Roleplaying Games in the world. It is littered all over pop culture, it helped birth many of today's favorite video game genres and D&D actual plays bring in millions of viewers/listeners every week.
But for such a popular game it isn't always entirely clear how to get started. So I've put together this guide for new and interested D&D players. We cover everything from basic rules and finding your group to simple tips to build a character and be a positive addition to your table.
We cover a bite size topic in each entry and you can check back every week for new topics!
In our first entry in the series, we go over the basics of Dungeons and Dragons and Tabletop Roleplaying games as a whole. This will get you caught up on the terms and rules you need to know to start playing the game. We also go a bit into the structure, goals and general vibe of the game.
If you're a new player this is your first stop! This will get you the basics you need to be ready to actually get into the action on your first session. It will also give you the terminology you need to do things like make a character.
In out second entry, we dig into one of the most requested topics for new players: How do you actually find a group? We go over some of the most popular and useful places to look for groups and even go a bit into how in-person and online D&D differ.
If you know the basics but don't actually have a place to play this is a great place to jump in!
In part 3 of our series, we dig into some of the most popular D&D actual play video series and podcasts out there today. Watching/hearing others play D&D is a great way to see how the game actually flows. Enjoying a wide variety of different actual plays is also a wonderful way to see the many different ways a game of D&D can actually run.
We've got all the most famous actual plays but we've also got different genres of D&D (like comedy and horror) and a whole gamut of experience levels and professionalism. This is a great way to kill time while you are finding a group or between sessions!
In our fourth entry, we start digging into Session 0 and Safety Tools. These are things that happen before and during the game to make sure everyone is communicating clearly and being kind and mindful of one another.
Safety Tools are systems that allow players to communicate topics or themes that are uncomfortable or off-limits for them. It also allows the players to decide amongst themselves certain behaviors or even rules/mechanics they want to alter or leave out of their game. An important topic to visit before you actually join a table!
In this entry, we continue our Session 0 conversation by diving into Genres, Themes and Settings.
When you're finding the right game for you, you have to know what you're looking for! Is it a high adventure, Tolkien-esque fantasy? Is it a fantasy noir, mystery story in a magi-tech metropolis? Is it a tense game of intrigue and palaces? These questions will also help you build the right character to fit into the world.
You'll also find a rundown of the official Wizards of the Coast published D&D settings so you can see what world you want to play in and a bit of what to expect. And of course we talk about the bespoke homebrew worlds that D&D is known for.
D&D is an awesome system but the rules as written can't cover every situation or style. That's what house rules are for! These are different rules and mechanics that individual groups add to their game. Sometimes it's for balance. Sometimes it's just because it makes the game more fun (for them) or creates a certain kind of vibe.
In this article we cover common house rules, why people use them and how they affect the game. A great primer as you look for games to join!
In this entry we dig into one of folks' favorite topics: coming up with a character! Character concepts are the seed that your PC will grow out of. Do you start with a cool mechanic and stats on a page and then create a persona to fit? Or do you think of a fun and interesting personality and then find the stats to match?
In this entry we talk about the two main approaches to coming up with a character and their pros, cons and best practices. This will get you ready to jump into character creation and crank out the awesome PC you'll be playing!
Hi! I'm Colby. DM, Nerd, IRL Cleric and Writer.