D&D With Eric the DM #15: Story Time
Eric the DM
I have been busy as always! Planning new adventures and traveling from realm to realm! I’m planning a great adventure for all of you too!
So, take a quick break with me and lets have a drink by my fire. We can share stories from last year and talk about our plans for the new!
When last we talked, we were still discussing things you can do to help immerse yourself into your story. We have covered a lot and I hope it has helped you! Here is a bit more!
So, when we talk about story immersion many think that the whole of the story telling is done by the DM. Moreover, they think that it is the DM’s responsibility alone. And this is not only false its detrimental to your gaming experience! The truth is while it is the DM who tells much of the story, the players are equally responsible for making that story come to life! Not only that but they should make stories of their own!
So lets talk about this from both sides. Let’s start with the players. Some players think its fun to be difficult in game. They go out of their way to cause turmoil and to try and ruin the DMs story. These players usually (hopefully) don’t last long. And they shouldn’t! Most DMs put in a lot of work to make exciting and fun stories for you to live in, and players who seek only to destroy ruin it for everyone. Instead be an “active listener” when your DM is telling the story. Think about what your character is thinking. Try and picture the scene in your mind. One of the most awesome things about gaming is you get to use your imagination! You are creating the world and all its characters, plants, and animals inside you! And the more you do it the better you will get at it!
This is not to say you can’t have your character act how you think they should act. If a situation arises where your character needs to take an action or say something, then do it and say it! Live in the moment! Living as your character is part of the fun! But there is a difference between taking a decisive action and being a troublemaker. Over time you will learn the difference. When it comes down to it though if you are willing to allow your DM to tell the story you will not be disappointed.
Players can also add to the story by allowing their character to have a story! The DM is opening a gigantic and fantastical world to you. Be open to experiencing it! Don’t be afraid to create relationships with NPCs and even entire towns! Growing a romantic relationship or a friendship with an NPC does NOT subtract from the story it adds to it! You are living in a very real world with your friends and you can and should interact with the people there! By interacting with the people, plants, animals, and towns you adventure in you are creating your characters own personal story! You are making a history for your character and more than that, you are making amazing memories.
When it come to the DM, they can be open to this and do their part to make it come to life for the players. If your players are showing an interest in an NPC, or a town, or a mystery you can latch onto that and let your players help you tell the story. One of the greatest skills to learn as a DM is to be able to strike a balance between the story you want to tell, and the stories your players want to live. It takes some practice but once there is a true yin and yang between the players and the DM, THAT is when gaming become truly magical!
This end the initial “tips and tricks” part of our discussion on story immersion. The truth is though that this aspect of tabletop gaming is something we never really stop talking about. Even amongst ourselves! As such in future talks we will return to this concept among others.
I’d also love to talk to you about anything you want to hear more about! I am here for you! We are building a community together! Let me know in the comments about things that interest you. Questions and concerns you have! We can talk about anything here!With that I’ll pour you another glass of mulled wine and be on my way. I have a feeling this new year is going to be action packed and I’ve got to get ready too! I wish you happy travels adventurers! Have fun out there and keep rolling those dice!