When planning a #dnd5e adventure ask: If every player failed every single skill check in this adventure, could they still complete it and could they still have fun?

If either answer is 'no' - I urge you to rework your adventure with that in mind.
"A character must succeed on a DC 17 Wisdom (Perception) check to notice the trap door in the floor."

Okay, everyone fails. Now what?

"Uh... UHHHH... i guess roll again?"

Hard pass.

And dont try the "make the DC 5!" i said assume they FAIL, not roll low.
"Characters who succeed on a DC 17 Wisdom (Perception) check notices the trap door in the floor. Otherwise, the doctor's mad shrieks leads them to the cellar, where a helmed horror with a +1 halberd guards a descending staircase."

Trap door = safe, easy
Cellar = dangerous enemy

Tweet: "notices"


Tweet: "notices"

some of y'all would happily drown arguing with a river over which way it's running.

Never said "remove failure"
Never said "make it easy"
Never said "railroad"
Never said "homebrew"
Never said "the RIGHT way"
Never said "force them to roll checks"
Never said "you should"
Enough people are posting questions or good comments that I don't want to mute this, but I am going to start just blocking you if you come into this thread willfully misinterpreting this thread.

Just gunna be up front about it.
Let's address this:

I chose "complete the adventure" not succeed for a specific reason. If the party never GETS to the climax of the adventure, it's not a failure, it's a STALL.

Frodo and Sam got lost and had to trust/rely on Gollum. They didn't just walk in circles forever.
That doesn't mean there's no risk or potential FOR failure. There's usually MORE risk after failed checks, by design.

Frodo nearly died in the marshes, nearly starved on the road, was nearly eaten by Shelob, finger bitten off, went mad. But didn't REMAIN STUCK IN SOME ROCKS.

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More from @DropTheDie

22 Apr
I miss playing pool, going to the gym, shopping with friends, and going shopping without looming fear.

It's one if those things where I was getting antsy in March 2020. And now I'm just... Ugh.

Butt gerblins.
Used to be: Friday, see if Phoenix wanted to go shopping around town, maybe Bed Bath and Beyond, Ikea, pick up stuff from Sam's Club on Saturday or Sunday when Brandon was free, too. Go to the gym every few days, remind myself what real weight feels like.
Go to one of those oldschool pool halls where the regulars sit at the bar all night and watch sports or talk about old times and I'd just rack up 3-4 games and play alone, smell the french fries and beer on the air. Maybe invite a friend.
Read 4 tweets
21 Apr
#dnd story time

Once I was playing a Fighter named Braxus von Uldrick, a Rashemi human who worked as a mercenary and father of three young boys, one of which traveled with him as a squire.

By level 14, we were trying to stop the avatar of a long-dead elder god named Toloph.
We fought our way through cultists and ogres, trolls and orcs, chasing after this crazed warlord who craved might and power more than anything and drove those around him through sheer fucking force of will. Like a cross between a paladin and warlock, he was a powerful leader.
We finally cornered him atop a mountain at the ruins of a temple to Toloph. We were already pretty battered from fighting his flunkies, but it was a "kill him now or Toloph will breathe once again" situation.

There was no talking to him, he was already yoked out of his mind-
Read 21 tweets
7 Jan
CW Nightmare

In the torn out belly of an old, sprawling hotel, I found myself investigating strange happenings in the fledgling restaurant that sprouted in the blasted ruin.

Swarthy men gutted the collapse, using every nail & timber to build the eatery and it's long tables.
I swear to have seen a spider, large as a dinner plate, with an ape-like face and twitching human fingers for legs, ground down to bloody points. But only a flash witnessed in a broken pane of glass. The bike thing was some illusion. A twisting of light and color, nothing more.
It was then , in the darkening hours of the day, that six young travelers entered, seating themselves at the single large feast table. Colorful, happy, bawdy souls in all, they seemed unaffected by the haze of terror that lingered among the workmen.
Read 14 tweets
27 Nov 20
#dnd5e - Let me talk to you about non-combat conflict.
Problems that don't get resolved from murdering someone.

Combat can be part of it or part of the solution, but here's a quick run-down of my 10 session types. Works best serialized, but can influence whole plots too.

1. Survival Against Danger.
A quickly devolving situation puts the party in fight or flight.

The volcano is about to explode, they have only minutes to find out why or escape.

An assassin has framed the party for the prince's murder, the guards are coming from all directions.
2. Unknown Magical Upheaval.
Some magical effect has changed the rules wildly, the party must stop it.

The town of Gold Hills, where the party is staying, has its gravity inverted. The young sorcerer responsible is unaffected but can't control it.
Read 13 tweets
27 Jun 20
When you're writing an adventure for #dnd5e, try present the quest/job/bounty in the following order.

Tagline: "The gargoyles have come to life!"
Reward: "For each of the creatures you slay, I offer 80 gold pieces. If you find my missing men, I'll double the reward."
Guidelines: "Their roosts is irreplaceable. If damage comes to the repaired church, you'll answer to the Duchess."
Description/Background: "One of my men, Salfax, saw the creatures coming to life with his own eyes. There was no enchantment, no mage casting spells, just a stroke of lightning that hit the church. A moment later, death descended on the town."
Read 8 tweets
27 Dec 19
Dumb #dnd story time.

I once gave my players "A Tome of Absolute Knowledge." A thick wood-bound ledger full of tiny 3pt font script. There was a wooden mouth carved on the front that spoke (without moving) to anyone who wished to read from the book.

The players found it in an old abandoned library of a city that was swallowed by a swamp, so they were pretty hyped to pick it up and hear "I am one of the Tomes of Absolute Knowledge. I have the power to answer 4 more questions before the magic ebbs from my pages. Ask."

I could not make this up. The PC holding the book immediately said "Did this book just talk?" in their character voice.

Obviously, no DM could resist: I replied "Yes. I spoke. 3 answers remain open to you."

Instead of laughs, the table erupted in PANIC.

Read 12 tweets

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