DM Forge: Dungeon Master Language (D&D Tips & Tricks)

Hey all welcome to a fistful of dice my name is Matt in this episode of Dungeon Master forged we're going to be talking about Dungeon Master language I'm not talking about foul language at the table that's up to for you to decide talking about the language that you use in response to your players chepe from fonte rod actually did a video on this little while back i'll put a link down in the description of his video but I thought he had some good thoughts about it and I kind of wanted to weigh in as well I've been wanting to make a video like this for a while the three techniques that I'm going to be focusing on our yes and yes but and no but and what these three things are are they are responses to your players attempting things in your game or asking you questions yes and is where you affirm to your players that what they have attempted or what they're asking is correct it's happened it exists in the world and you're then going to expand upon it yes but means the exact same thing but there's a downside to it or it's going in a direction they didn't anticipate no but is where it hasn't come to pass it hasn't happened it doesn't exist in the world but you're going to compromise with them and give them a little something in exchange now I know I know I made a video a while back dnd pitfalls saying know where I said Dungeon Master's shouldn't say no and I still agree with that but no buts and no are two very different things no is just shooting your players down and not accepting their collaboration and the world building and the scenario and the quest no but is allowing them a little bit it's giving them that compromise.

Let's take a common general scenario and apply these three techniques the party of player characters enters a room in your dungeon do you briefly describe the barest of details about the room and then allow the players to ask questions to fill the rest of the room in what's the first question player characters asked is there a light source in this room now you can say yes and and you decide that yes there is a light source in this room and it's bioluminescent mushrooms they're actually mushrooms that are glowing this sort of vivid blue color and.

The room is fairly well lit but it gives you kind of an eerie strange feeling having this light sort of emanate from these from these mushrooms from this fungus.

Now the players know ok yes there is light and in addition it's something they weren't necessarily expecting you have taken their question their query and expanded upon it to further build the world to further expand upon what the players are seeing and interacting with now let's take another example the players into the room and say is there a light source and you say yes but yes but it's a dying dwindling campfire in the center of the room and you see that at one point fairly recently there was a group of creatures camped out here sitting around the fire they've left in a hurry though and have just left the cinders of their campfire there in the center of the room.

It's very dim.

Right there you have made what the players ask real but you have done.

In a way that imposes some sort of restriction or downside to their query now let's take the third one the players into the room say is there light source and you say no but there are torches on the wall if you want to light them.

Right now it's dark but you can see that there are torches on in sconces on the walls they can easily come up with their flint and tinder or whatever and light it.

No you haven't just given the players what they want but you have given them the possibility of getting what they want or the possibility of furthering their actions let's take a little bit more dynamic scenario in a combat the players are fighting a bow DAC one of the most feared creatures and Dungeons and Dragons capable of killing a character on site the players recognize the creature and proceeded to ask are there any mirrors or glass in the room now you as a DM take a moment to stop and think because you hadn't planned on there being any glass or mirrors in this scenario but it's a creative enough solution you know using the mirror or the glass to reflect the Botox stare back at itself that you think about saying yes.

What do you do well you could just outright give it to them you say yes and it's on the far side of the room you can go pick it up and have it you could say yes but it's really dirty and grimy and it's going to take a little bit to get the smudges off.

That you can actually use it or you could say no but there is a pool of water on the other side of the room that is slightly reflective.

With those three options all of them are giving the players something it is rewarding their creativity their strategic thinking their teamwork but you're not necessarily just handing it to them as a dungeon master as a game master get in the habit of using these three three techniques rather than just saying yes or no because yes is kind of boring no is boring and withholding.

Get in the habit of doing yes and yes but and no but I think you'll find that it makes the game more rewarding for everybody and your players will get more and more comfortable with asking questions trying creative things and just basically being more immersed and involved in the game as a whole try it in your next game tell me how it goes take care guys happy gaming all.

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