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AJ Haines

Less than a year on StartPlaying


2 games hosted


Highly rated for: Voices, Sets the Mood, Storytelling

About me

• DM For Over 8 Years! • Voice Actor with a Background in Theater • Experienced Running Monster Hunts, Mysteries, Spy Games, Dungeon Crawls, and More! Greetings, fellow adventurer! My name is AJ, and I've been the forever DM of my friend groups for 8ish years now, and in that time, I've learned how to write engaging stories, creating interesting NPCs to roleplay off of, homebrew challenging and interesting monsters/enemies, and most silly voices. Lots...and lots...of silly voices. As a teacher and a long-time player and DM, I welcome players of all experience levels! • Newer players, get ready to have a great experience creating characters, learning combat, learning how to roleplay with NPCs, and most importantly, having a great time meeting new people or enjoying D&D with your friends! • Veteran players, be prepared for custom monsters that go WAY beyond the Monster Manual, challenging but fulfilling encounters, interesting storytelling, and stakes like you've never seen before! I run custom campaigns in homebrew settings and the Exandria setting from Critical Role, whether it's a short 3-session jaunt or a dedicated story over multiple months. I'm just as comfortable at the table as I am on a virtual tabletop or online! Join me at my physical table and you'll have my very best DMing skills at your disposal, including (but not limited to): • Face-to-face interaction with NPCs that have unique voices, motivations, quests, and resources. • Music and ambience, with dedicated playlists for backgrounds, combat, and character moments. • Access to dice, physical battle maps, condition markers, item and resource cards, and props! Join me on Discord, Owbear Rodeo, or Roll 20 and you'll have a wonderful digital tabletop experience, including (but not limited to): • Interaction with NPCs that sound even more amazing thanks to my handy voice changer! • Music and ambience provided by a discord bot that allows for better immersion. • Access to digital world maps, battle maps, and item and resource cards through virtual tabletops. I run $5 per person Character Creation Sessions (also known as Session 0), where the players meet with me all at the same time and discuss general rules and expectations. • All players of all walks of life welcome! • I'll walk you through character creation regardless if you're a newbie or a veteran! • If you decide during Session 0 that my DM style or game isn't for you, I'll refund you! Session 1 is always $10 per person. Session 2 and onward is $15 per person. Prices are subject to change. Scheduling is done via StartPlayingGames for now, regardless of whether we play in person or virtually. If any player goes against the established rules or violates personal boundaries at the table (or virtually), I will bar them from continuing in my campaigns in order to maintain an open and friendly environment in my games.

GM style

🎲General Style: I prioritize roleplaying and problem solving first, combat second, and exploration third. These three pillars of play are all vital to my storytelling and your experience, so if you enjoy one or all of these things, I'm your guy! 👍Friendly and Open Table: My table is a safe space for anyone to enjoy playing D&D. Anyone found harassing my players will be removed from my table. All players are welcome. 🎭Roleplaying and RP: Roleplaying is the core of my storytelling. I love doing voices and sound effects, and have many years of experience doing them. From burly barkeeps to sultry spies, you'll interact with the most interesting NPCs you could think of! 💭Problem Solving and Puzzles: Not all problems can be solved with violence, so negotiations, persuasion, deception, careful planning and research can all lead to victory in my games. More than this, I enjoy crafting puzzles and mysteries for my players to solve, so if you enjoy investigations over fisticuffs, I'm the DM for you! ⚔️Combat: I absolutely LOVE combat, whether it's designing custom homebrew monsters or making things as cinematic as possible by describing the effects of battle with vivid imagery and sound effects. I run custom rules that optimize combat, including the "crunchy crits" rule to give Natural 20s extra oomph. If you love slaying monsters and harvesting their scales to make weapons and armor, you'll be right at home in my campaigns, as I'm inspired by games like Monster Hunter and Dauntless. 🌎Exploration and Worldbuilding: I have two homebrewed worlds you can explore, Renova and Yvara, as well as access to the continent of Tal'Dorei in the world of Exandria created by Matt Mercer and Critical Role. If you want to discover secrets, go to unexplored areas, fight new and exotic monsters in strange lands, I'll be your tour guide! 💀Dungeons, Dungeon Crawls, and Challenge Gauntlets: For those of you who want the classic Diablo-style "kill shit, get loot" experience, boy have I got what you need. I make and borrow dungeons from many places, filling them with custom encounters, puzzles, and more! I even have Challenge Gauntlets in some areas of my settings, mini-dungeons for specific rewards that level up along with you! 🛠️Homebrew: I homebrew a lot of stuff, including subclasses, monsters, weapons, magic items, and much more! If you can dream it, we can build it together! 📖Rules: I only have a few rules for you the players: Be kind and courteous to each other, don't hog the spotlight, and most importantly, be on time! We establish our rules and limits as a group during Session 0. If you break them too many times, I'll ask you to leave the group. ❓Questions and Concerns: Feel free to message me if you have any questions or concerns about anything above!

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