- File Size: 258 KB
- Print Length: 123 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: November 25, 2012
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00ADV2H8O
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Not Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #56,506 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
The Lazy Dungeon Master Kindle Edition
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|Length: 123 pages|
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Top Customer Reviews
And man does it succeed!
The advice in here amounts to about 10-15 main "tips", most of which are "Things you can and should fit onto a 3x5 notecard to keep preparation to a minimum and utility at a maximum." There's a few other tips and tricks, but the vast majority revolve around that. The thing of it is that the tips are highly specific, and concisely stated regarding what goes on the notecard, and in what order, allowing it to be an excellent tool at the table.
Other tips and tricks include having portfolios of different information -- maps, monsters, stats, personality ideas for roleplaying -- so you can literally pick and choose every element of an NPC, monster, trap, or encounter on the fly, and make it all work. Dozens of quotes from professional game designers, long-time Dungeon Masters, and other bloggers help to clarify or customize these tips, so you know you'll find stuff that's useful for how you DM and how you prep. One person might be OCD, while another totally wings, and there are good tips for both types (and everything in between) in this book.
As the introduction states, this book is more for experienced DMs, though I'd say it's worth reading almost immediately, even for newbies. You may not understand the advice right away if you're a n00b, but you'll have several "Ah-HA!" moments once you get a few sessions under your belt and refer back to this book.
As a 25+ year veteran gamer, I can honestly say this book is worth every penny, and every bit of advice is good. There's little -- maybe nothing -- I won't use from this book, and that's rare in RPG books filled with tips and advice.
Now if you are an experienced GM, most of the advice is sound and I wish I had heard it on some occasion (many) years ago when an impromptu game was thrown on my lap on an afternoon and I didn't have anything with me but pen and paper - not even dice.
The essence of the suggestion is: have seen it all many times and you don't need to prepare, reason why it won't work with inexperienced GM.
First, nothing dispenses you from knowing the rules inside and out. Even if you play "permissive" systems such as AD&D 2e or even Pathfinder (as opposed to 3e or 4e) you still need to know enough of the rules to be able to keep the balance while fudging.
Second, lazy GMing requires access to much prepared material (NPCs, monsters, locations, encounters etc.) for which you need (1) access to the material right there at the table and (2) knowing your way around to find the needed information without searching.
Third, this mostly applies to role-playing, not mechanics. Inexperienced GMs tend to rely on mechanics because the rules are math and give them a sense of mastery when pure role-playing cannot be codified that easily, hence more combat and less personal interactions.
The real value of this short book, to me, is in the appendices where a few experienced GMs are interviewed with a set of standard questions about preparation and the value it brings tot heir games - even though I thought the questions were biased towards "preparation is not that important".
There are a few tables aimed at providing ideas for campaign arcs or short on-the-spot adventures, but if this is what you are after I would strongly suggest getting the Pathfinder Game Mastery Guide, even if you are not playing Pathfinder. It is much more elaborate and addresses aspects barely touched here, such as the players archetypes and how to address them, a subject that would deserve more attention.
Thanks for the great, easy-to-read, non-preachy advice, Michael Shea!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I found a lot of good tips and resources in this blood and the layout and pacing was accessible and made it easy to get back to points I wished to revisitPublished 9 days ago by Kindle Customer
I always try to live by the manta "work smarter, not harder" when it comes to work and such projects. Read morePublished 17 days ago by Harmony Scott
Not the best read I've ever encountered for DMs. In fact I disagree with a lot of what this guy says... I prefer DMs that are well prepared... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Johnny in Texas
So informative help a lot for new DM that want to run good game in short time .fop 5.99 it like you buy junk food but this book will make you god of dmingPublished 4 months ago by smallsmall
A DM years ago, I recently got back into D&D when 5e came out. After a brief session with friends, I couldn't wait to run a campaign again. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Richard F Joseph Jr
Tons, and I mean TONS of great, useful advice to help make lots of fun games!Published 5 months ago by J.T. Thompson
Great suggestions to keep your campaign planning from getting too overwhelming. Reminds you not to overburden yourself with the subtleties and focus lightly on the elements that... Read morePublished 5 months ago by Ryan Dugan
If I'd have started with this I could have skipped the steep learning curve and gone straight to the comfortable summit of DM-ship. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Christie medrano