DnD Group Rules

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I am planning on starting a new DnD campaign after I read the 4E rules. I have completed some peliminary work for the campaign itself then I thought of things that I wanted to outline and communicate to my group of friends before we start playing. I want to create a document that explains what I am expecting each player to do while we are playing the game.

I want to start by briefly explaining each point then I am asking for help from members of the forum to help me refine and expand each point. I don't mind criticism as long as it is constructive. The age of my target audience is between 28-50. Guess what? The 50 year old is the more difficult person. Btw, I am 40 with not much patience if people keep doing things that frustrate me.

1. 1 DM and Many Players: Over the course of my game career I find the game goes smoother if only one person has the DM hat on instead of everyone at the table. If you are a player I expect you to leave your DM hat at home. If you would like to DM then by all means do it because I would like to be a player some times. Otherwise I expect to not hear, "I wouldn't make that ruling if I were DM."

If you disagree with a ruling then address it before the next game session, after the current session or during the session. If you plan on addressing it during the session then I would suggest that you do it in a non-confrontational manner.

If you disagree with every ruling or a pattern exists where it seems like you are disagreeing with every ruling then I suggest that you take up the mantle of DM.

2. Cooperative Play vs. Competitive Play: The DM is not in competition with the Players! The Players are not in competition with the DM! Dungeons and Dragons is a cooperative storytelling game. It works best when the DM describes an environment or situation, preferably with minimal background noise, then have the players react by describing what the characters are doing.

If I, as DM, want to WIN then I can set the situations up to do it. I won't have fun in that type of game and I know you, the players, won't have fun either.


3. DM Responsibility before a Game Session:
a. Review the rules for mistakes made in the previous session.
b. Prepare new adventures based on information gathered from the
players after the previous session.

4. DM Responsibility during a Game Session:
a. Make fair rulings based on my current understanding of the rules.
b. Look up a rule if it can be done without a large lull in the session
c. Listen respectfully to the player's nonconfrotational concerns

5. DM Responsibility after a Game Session:
a. Ask the players for feedback concerning the session.
b. At the completion of a story arc the DM will ask the players for
feedback concerning where to take the next session. This is the players
chance to influence the direction of the campaign. After a story arc
there could be loose ends that can be left hanging or if the player(s)
wants their character to explore the loose end(s) then this is the time
to tell the DM. This point is trying to avoid a situation where the DM
spends time creating an adventure but the players really don't want to
do it.

6. Player’s Responsibility before the first Game Session: The players should come to the first game session with a concept in mind for a character to play. This concept should always be kept in mind when choosing a character's attributes, powers, skills and feats. It would be helpful to have it written down. It is a concept not a background.

I do expect the player to write a background for the character. The background should be at least a 1/2 page on colleage rule paper. I will have a template available that can be filled out instead of free style writing the background. This is another opportunity for you, the player, to help build the campaign world. For example, if you provide a name of an organization then I will use it eventually during the course of the campaign and I may even ask you to flesh out the organization a bit too.

7. Player’s Responsibility during a Game Session:
a. Be respectful to others.
b. Respect the time and effort the DM has put into the adventure.
c. If you decide to call the DM on a mistake that favors the Player
Characters then be sure that you call the DM on a mistake when the
mistake favors an NPC too.

8. Player’s Responsibility after a Game Session:
a. Provide feedback on the session.
b. When a story arc is over then be sure to suggest story path's for the
DM. This is your opportunity to help shape the direction of the
campaign.

Suggestions to improve?

I am going to try to check this every day but I may end up doing it every other day since this a busy time at work and at home.

Thanks, in advance, for your help.

RayOMan