Critical Hit: A Major Spoilers D and D podcast
Four Against The Void

This episode: You asked for it, and we’re delivering – a series of episodes walking those who want to become a Game Master through the process. This time out: All the goods and materials you need to bring to the game.


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  1. Chess sets (the pieces, namely) make for a great and cheap DM’s miniatures starter. I’ve never used them myself but I’ve known folks who have and swear by them.

  2. I liked when Stephen started coming up with names for NPCs like “Bill the Baker”. There was a time in my DMing and storytelling life when I thought this sounded artificial, but like any other storytelling medium, in D&D, you have to pick your battles and where you’re going to try and be realistic (ie. profession surnames don’t necessarily persist longer than a couple generations) and where you’re going to go with what’s quick and easy. It’s the same reason I never have my D&D fantasy kingdoms outlaw magic use, nor invent any kind of paper identification or paper money.

    It is an artificial world where the majority of the people carry the surname of their actual profession, avoid the use of paper money and letters of credit, and avoid outlawing dangerous activities like being an adventuring wizard.

    I also noticed a couple of times, (and Rodrigo pointed it out too) where Stephen just started going crazy with the improvisation, and you can just tell that in a lot of ways he is going to be a cool DM. It remains to be seen whether he can get it all together of course, since DMing is a lot of different skills, and the only true test is to run an actual game. I just thought it was cool.

    Also, Stephen, I recommend you come back to these podcasts in a few years’ time and see where your mind was at today. Because while it’s cool to take Rodrigo’s advice on a lot of these issues of Dungeon Mastery when you’re a beginning DM, some of the ideas that you have would be an awesome variant and an awesome addition to the craft of Dungeon Mastery (as well as storytelling in general). I’m saying try not to lose some of the cool ideas you have now, even though you probably shouldn’t try and execute them now. And save them for when you have a lot of DM experience under your belt. Because the danger that can happen to DMs is that they learn to do it all by the book, and then they get stuck in their ways, forgetting the cool ideas they had when they were just learning.

  3. Well, that was a nice vacation: good luck Stephen! I know my first DMing was- well, not horrifying, I’m nicely immune to stage fright, but it was challenging.
    However, waiting bores me, I shall go find out how you do directly…
    Personal timeline jump in 3..2..*pop*

  4. Can you provide a link for the printable miniatures Stephen talked about in the episode around 22:30? He referenced Red Dragon Games, but I can’t seem to find anything pertaining to printable miniatures on the site. Thanks! Great podcast! Keep the adventures coming!

  5. Please, please, just post the next episode right now! I can’t stand the wait. I think this new direction for Critical Hit, and I really enjoy your podcast a lot. I really can’t wait to find out what kind of characters the players will bring this time!

    Keep it up!!!!

  6. I guess you guys are really busy with the site, etc, but it would be great to have meatier show notes… or any show notes. They’re so many things you guys talk about and I either miss the name or never heard a name… so I can’t look it up. Besides that, great show. Lots of content!

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