by Mike Shea on 4 March 2011
Below is an archive of all of the Sly Flourish DM Tip Twitter posts for February 2011. Get daily DM tips at http://twitter.com/slyflourish!
#dnd tip: Powerful villains should have some protection mechanism that can be disabled with skill challenges. Think healing fonts.
I love the Deck of Mortals in the Iron Lich preview by @saveversusdeath http://j.mp/gZxV0l
#dnd tip: The instance bosses from World of Warcraft can be scraped for some pretty fun D&D encounters.
@Squach So like a maze would represent the picking of a lock. Hand a player a maze and they have to complete it in 30 seconds or it triggers
Studying up on my #fourthcore #dnd in preparation for my next game: http://t.co/AaIDR6r
Building an awesome #dnd dungeon for next Wednesday night with lots of old school traps and Monster Vault monsters. Can't wait.
#dnd tip: Professor Moriarty of Sherlock Holmes might be a perfect villain. Model yours after him: http://bit.ly/1xFKtK
There's a lot of awesome #dnd tips (which I plan to steal) from @chattydm's excellent article on skill system hacking: http://j.mp/fLYfln
#dnd tip: Every good Dark Sun game should begin with blood spraying in the arena.
Just bought RPGKids for a friend with four children. It's better than his plan to turn them into WoW gold farmers: http://j.mp/96RKGN
#dnd tip: The Beholder Gauth in the Monster Vault can be reskinned into an awesome alien or robotic probe in Gamma World.
@Alive30 I'd probably stick it up on Obsidian Portal. That's where I keep my campaign info.
@chattydm I love the monster vault. It's my favorite monster book ever.
#dnd tip: Need some powerful Epic-tier dragons? Check out the excellent Prismatic Dragon by @rjschwalb: http://bit.ly/e2LoQF
@newbiedm It's nice to keep all your campaign notes digitally so you can archive them easier.
Research for an upcoming article. Thank the gods my wife has such an awesome 1e collection. #dnd http://yfrog.com/gyulvuamj
Time to sit down at my table, one night early, and "visualize" my #dnd game to see what's missing. How very zen self-helpy of me.
Adding "The Out" to my #dnd Encounter checklist. Every battle needs an "out" to end it early when needed without breaking the story.
#dnd tip: Dark Sun is the perfect campaign setting to give characters difficult choices with clear consequences either way.
@squach Forced movement into damaging terrain doesn't damage the victim. They take damage at the start of their turn.
@Squach No crits except on natural 20s regardless of feat, weapon, or power.
I'm not sure why I'm so excited about a new DM screen with the same numbers as the one in the DM Kit, but I am: http://t.co/MWrEtJQ
#dnd tip: If you don't have a lot of time to prep an adventure, jot down the important details on 3x5 cards so you remember them.
#dnd Dave Chalker and Mike Shea on Paragon D&D http://goo.gl/fb/9YMhT
.@FaustoReluctant (the Dragonborn in the Epic book cover) recommended the Tank Girl soundtrack for Dark Sun. Looks pretty good!
.@maverick0023 Demonomicon, MM3, Monster Vault, Dark Sun Creature Catalog all have updated damage and are awesome. #dnd
#dnd tip: The Tron Legacy soundtrack works well for a Gamma World high-tech soundtrack: http://amzn.to/hsR8L8
Whoever at @wizards_dnd that came up with the name Arisphistaneles in the Dark Sun Campaign Setting needs to come apologize to us.
I'm going to skip writing the flavor text for my next #dnd Dark Sun game to see how well I can ad-lib it. Saves me a bunch of time.
#dnd tip: Don't take over control of dominated PCs. Let players run the PC in the best interests of the dominator.
#dnd tip: Always keep your group rolling. If people start to look bored, do some group history or insight checks to reveal story bits.
Going with a mix of the 300 soundtrack and Iggy Pop for my Dark Sun soundtrack. #dnd
Great thread on EnWorld for good music in your #dnd Dark Sun campaign: http://t.co/FBCJ3UY
Just ran my first Dark Sun mini campaign adventure: Children of Blood. Started in the arena the day Kalak died. Great fun. #dnd
#dnd tip: A few hours before running a game, go through the whole game in your head step by step to see if anything's missing.
.@KatoKatonian I'll do a post but this is a good start for a #dnd walk-away bag. http://j.mp/i5TkTi
#dnd tip: Keep a mobile DM kit in a small ziploc bag like you're a bank robber and this is your emergency geeky walk-away bag.
I want a gaming table that has a huge flat surface up top and a bottom shelf that goes all the way around for drinks, food, and supplies.
.@mercutio531 Actually I agree. They should be hidden for the first round or two and then revealed with monster knowledge checks.
Some DMs flip out about revealing monster defenses. I say get over it. It saves a ton of back-and-forth discussion in
.@gamefiend I think there are three great procedural changes to speed up combat: visible initiative, visible monster defenses, a coaxing DM.
A question for you master DMs out there. How do you get your players to look outside of their trained skills in skill challenges? #dnd
This is too wacky, even for Gamma World: http://t.co/QpUHndf
#dnd tip: Hand out a list of classes, races, and allowed sourcebooks at the beginning of your campaign to limit complexity. #toomanypowers
Very cool event track progression for #dnd by gaming guru, @davethegame: http://t.co/OPNuCr2
@Alive30 "it sucks to wait a round" is why rounds need to be faster, not the just whole battle. How do we speed up rounds?
Excellent ideas for Gamma World head protection from Egypt protesters: http://j.mp/ezNR0Z
#dnd tip: Gnolls and Eladrin from the Monster Vault make for great mid-level Gamma World humanoid monster templates.
Cool stuff by @rjschwalb on embedded skill challenges: http://j.mp/h1TjLy I use these often in big battles. Works great!
@digitaldraco Polymorphed dragon became their bar matron. Neogi became accountant. Vampire became bouncer at the bar.
It's amazing how many defeated monsters ended up working for the PCs in my Shieldbasher #dnd campaign. Always give players choices.
#dnd tip: Add conspiracy groups to your campaign to keep things interesting. Good become evil, evil become good, and PCs in the middle.
@DeathByDragonry Yep, I trust the recorder to get HP right and he doesn't give any other intel than bloodied to the rest of the group.
I am still really terrible at remembering all the interrupts of my solo monsters. I need some sort of visual aid.
Today I also successfully delegated monster hit point tracking to one of my players. Made life much easier. #dnd
@loganbonner Example: Sorceress was actually the Princess of Fire primordial who lost her memory. Ranger was a godhunter hunting Orcus.
@loganbonner A little bit. The PCs all had epic-level story-lines but they weren't always tied perfectly to Epic Destinies.
Just ran an awesome level 26 variant of the Elder Black Dragon. The 30 damage burst every time it gets hit was brutal. PCs still won. #dnd
Interesting ideas on how a DM can track health of the PCS: http://j.mp/fxKXJ4
#dnd tip: Try giving your solo a terrain-altering effect when it becomes bloodied. Pour out minions or add lava pits or both!
Really enjoyed being on the DM Round Table tonight. We answered a bunch of questions and talked about a lot of interesting topics.
Thanks to @GSLLC for all the Sly Flourish love in the Expert DM Podcast! http://t.co/utULe6N
#dnd tip: You can't go wrong digging into Michael's craft store for all sorts of interesting terrain and props.
@BruceCordell @sarahdarkmagic @newbiedm I will say, that cover to Legion of Gold is bad-ass. http://t.co/xT3PsNX
If you enjoyed these tips, take a look at Sly Flourish’s Dungeon Master Tips book or Sly Flourish's Running Epic Tier D&D Games. You can also use these links to purchase the Dungeon Master's Kit, the Monster Vault, the Heroes of the Fallen Lands or bookmark this link to buy anything from Amazon.
Send feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.