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  1. #1

    Question about how to learn the rules really well

    Hey Everyone,

    It's been brought to my attention several times lately that I do not know the 5th edition rules as well as I'd like to. I think I'm a decent DM (I've got a campaign that's been going on in FG for over a year now, and I doubt the people in my game would stick around if they hated it), but I'd like to know the rules, really, really well. I mean, I know the rules pretty much, but not all of them. For those of you that know the rules really well, how did you learn them so well? Any tips/help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Dosey the Clown

  2. #2
    Trenloe's Avatar
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    RTFM! ;-)

    And after a session, RTFM specific sections to do with what you encounter in a session. Don't just assume you have it right, check after until you know the rules really, really well.
    Private Messages: My inbox is forever filling up with PMs. Please don't send me PMs unless they are actually private/personal messages. General FG questions should be asked in the forums - don't be afraid, the FG community don't bite and you're giving everyone the chance to respond and learn!

  3. #3
    LordEntrails's Avatar
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    For me, I found that I have to not only read them, but then walk through various scenarios. Such as a rogue hiding in magical darkness and trying to attack with advantage. Or a mage that's trying to counter spell, or... Also, the other thing to do is after you play an encounter and you wonder if you got the rules right, go back afterwards and replay it on your own and dive into the rules to think you got them right.

    And then, most importantly, don't sweat it. Play the game, have fun, stick to the intent, and make rulings. Ignore the rules lawyers.

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  4. #4
    aside from reading the material a thousand times, there are numerous videos out there on youtube, Dave, The Digital Dungeon Master, has KILLER videos about this, as well as the youtube channel How To Be A Better GM. In fact if you just search youtube for "how to GM 5e" you will find a ton. I am on phone otherwise i would have given you links for days...If you need more help finding videos then let me know.
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  5. #5
    LordEntrails's Avatar
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    A bunch of the links that Wookie talks about can be found here; https://www.fantasygrounds.com/forum...6014-GM-Advice

    Not only are there good links there about the rules, but about how to be a better GM, no matter how long you have been doing it.

    Problems? See; How to Report Issues, Bugs & Problems
    On Licensing & Distributing Community Content
    Community Contributions: Gemstones, 5E Quick Ref Decal, Adventure Module Creation, Dungeon Trinkets, Balance Disturbed, Dungeon Room Descriptions
    Note, I am not a SmiteWorks employee or representative, I'm just a user like you.

  6. #6
    Trenloe's Avatar
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    But don't believe everything you read or watch on the Internet! ;-)
    Private Messages: My inbox is forever filling up with PMs. Please don't send me PMs unless they are actually private/personal messages. General FG questions should be asked in the forums - don't be afraid, the FG community don't bite and you're giving everyone the chance to respond and learn!

  7. #7
    Thanks!

  8. #8
    I found the best way is to play as a player a lot, in games with GMs that know the rules really well, and ask questions. Do the unusual stuff that you don't know the rules for so that you experience them.

    It's also good to re-read the PHB once every 6 months or so. Take a major chapter a month or so as a reading exercise. You learn something new every time you do, surprisingly.
    I never claimed to be sane. Besides, it's more fun this way.

  9. #9
    TMO's Avatar
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    For some of us retention is not as easy to come by as it once was and the rules have only become more complex since the 1e days that I started in (although I'm told some versions, like 4e, have been far worse than 5e!)

    I have resorted to creating my own cheat sheet for the most frequently used rules and scenarios that I come across. It's akin to what the old school Dungeon Master Screens used to provide, but tailored to my own needs.

    I also let my players explain what their character's race and class can do rather than attempt to memorize every nuance. After each game I'll do a little bit of a review (as suggested above) to make sure I understand items that were a bit fuzzy to me or that I might have disagreed with but didn't think it was important enough to halt game flow to adjudicate.

  10. #10

    Thumbs up

    I have been playing since the early 80's. I usually play as a DM. Aside from the guides, videos, internet, and software now available, you can just keep playing, reading inspiring novels, watching Fantasy movies, writing your own materials for your game, making maps with pen and pencil and then maybe use Campaign Cartographer like software, playing A LOT with supportive friends in real life pen and paper style DnD RPG games. I have the years in for DnD and I am still relearning everything as we speak. Just now, I have learned that I am no further along than you are. I am in my personal quest at becoming a better DM, a more prepared DM, and a more flexible DM. You are probably doing just fine, you may just need some inspiration. I read a ton of FR books, a few of them over, and over... and that is a part of the magic that has given me color and dimension to the FR Genre. I struggled more on names, places, and made up things as a DM because I could not recall half the stuff I threw at all my players. Now, in FG, you have access to the HTML log as a brief summary of the in- game mechanics...! As far as the Role-play aspect with capturing in game details from voice or chat, you can record your sessions on your computer and then go back and listen, take notes, make adjustments....then, delete or archive the said sessions...

    Keep up the hard work, but fun work!
    Laerun~
    Last edited by Laerun; May 16th, 2017 at 13:21.

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