I love GM'ing more than anything! It is the thing in life that I am most passionate about. Telling stories together, watching characters and worlds unfold and change infront of us every week is the most rewarding thing that I have found in a hobby. So it is my life goal to make that hobby my career. I first played D&D in 2011 when I was 21. I only played 2 or 3 sessions as a player before I started my own game with 6 of my closest friends from high school. That game went on weekly for almost 2 years, from level 1, to level 23 (D&D 3.5e rules). I had no idea at the time just how rare that was. After that game ended, in 2013, there was a dry spell for a year or so, as half our group moved away, and moved on with life. But in 2014 we decided to try this new shiny 5th edition, got motivated to go find new players to form a new group and ever since then I have not gone more than a month or so without running D&D. Can't Stop. Won't Stop. I live by the rule of cool and above all else, the most important thing for me as a GM, is that everyone is having fun, telling kickass stories together.
The first thing I have to say is that for me, this hobby is all about having fun with a group of people. I require my game table to be 100% friendly and inclusive to all people from all walks of life, LGBTQ+ friendly. This also includes a zero tolerance policy for creepy, hateful, or trollish behavior. D&D is meant to be a safe space, we are all here to escape into a world of fantasy, free of judgement and harassment. CAMPAIGN CREATION STYLE - I find that the very best stories I have experienced come from games where the Players create their characters first, mostly together with me, fitting them properly into the setting and its lore. Then I make the story hooks and adventures, drawing from the back grounds and current plans/desires of the characters in game, whenever possible, weaving them all together so that every PC that wants to, has some involvement or personal stake in the over arcing story of the game. NARRATION STYLE - I like my games to feel similar to watching a movie whenever possible. I strive to set the scene for players to easily imagine everything thats going on, and play each NPC with distinct voices and mannerisms to draw in and immerse the players. During combat, especially, I do my best to constantly narrate how everything is happening at the same time, so that we can invision the combat more like an action scene from Lord of the Rings or Star Wars, and less like a slow game of chess. REALISM - I am a huge proponent of the Rule of Cool. But I don't like to get carried away with it. A quote I love from one of my favorite DMs is "The characters are Legolas, they are not Buggs Bunny". This is exactly how I feel about realism. I like things to be grounded enough in reality to apply logic still.. but, if an elf wants to surfboard a shield down a flight of stairs?? All it takes is a good enough Skill Check lol. That being said, this IS a world of high fantasy with Magic... and when magic gets involved? I do have to admit things CAN get a little looney tunes, and thats okay too. DA RULES - I prefer to say Yes to players as Often as is possible. For me, the rules exist to keep balance in the "Game" Aspect of the ttrpg. But it's important for me to never allow the rules, which are necessary for game balance, to kill the creativity of the players. To that end I try hard to make the rules match what the player wants to do. An example would be, If a Player spellcaster would like to use a spell in a manner it is not intended for. The 'Web' spell casts a large amount of spider webs in a large area to slow or stick down enemies. However the player wants to use Web to glue down an enemies dropped weapon before they can pick it back up. So the Players goal is "stop the enemy from attacking next turn." Now, I know that there are many other equal or weaker spells that could accomplish this, so power-wise, this is not unbalanced. But many of those require a dice roll of some kind. So I just apply a little logic, and my ruling is, "Yes, your character can attempt to use web in this way, however it takes much more precise aim, so, you must make a successful ranged spell attack to hit the dropped weapon." Whenever I use rulings in this way I am always sure to also open it up to the players and ask them if this sounds fair. If anyone at the table has some other bit of logic, or knowledge of a game mechanic that I have not thought of at the moment, I am aways willing to work with them and come to an agreement about rules interpretation whenever possible.
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