So you've probably arrived here looking to run your first D&D or RPG campaign (because D&D is just one of many awesome role-play games out there) and wondering how to begin.
In this guide, we have written some simple steps for you to take to run your first campaign including some common questions most people have.
- How to run a beginners D&D / RPG Campaign
- Here are some additional tips for running a beginners D&D campaign
- Equipment you may need
- Popular RPG Systems
How to run a beginners D&D / RPG Campaign
- Gather your players. The first thing you need to do is gather a group of people who are interested in playing D&D. This could be friends, family, or even strangers you meet online.
- Choose a campaign. There are many different D&D campaigns available, and further more even more different types of RPG games too. You'll need to choose one that is appropriate for your group's experience level and a theme which you will all enjoy. Most RPG publishers have pre-made campaigns so If you're all beginners, you might want to start with one of them.
- Create characters. Each player will need to create a character for the campaign. This means choosing a race, class, and background for their character. You can find more information on character creation in the D&D Player's Handbook, other systems usually have something similar to this with some variance, such as Call of Cthulhu, were your character is typically an investigator solving unknown horrors in the 1920's (though there is a wide range of settings too).
- Set the scene. Once everyone has their characters, you can start setting the scene for the campaign. This means describing the environment, the characters, and the situation they're in.
- Run the game. As the Dungeon Master (DM, sometimes known as the GM, games master), it's your job to run the game. This means describing the environment, the characters, and the situation the players are in. It also means resolving combat, skill checks, and other challenges.
- Have fun! The most important thing is to have fun. RPG's and especially D&D is a great way to let your imagination run wild and create your own adventures. So relax, enjoy yourself, and let the game begin!
Here are some additional tips for running a beginners D&D campaign
- Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes when they're first starting out. The important thing is to learn from your mistakes and keep moving forward.
- Be flexible. Things don't always go according to plan in D&D. Be prepared to improvise and adjust your plans as needed.
- Encourage your players to be creative. D&D is a game about imagination. Encourage your players to come up with creative solutions to problems and challenges.
- Have fun! D&D is a game, so make sure you're having fun. If you're not having fun, your players won't be either.
Equipment you may need
- Dice - most games requires dice. D&D uses a 7-dice poly set including the popular D20 (such as the ones here) whilst others may use D6's or D10's.
- Miniatures - no not necessary, it does give a greater element to combat and dungeon exploring. For D&D our Elfsera range provides great models for any player. We also have SciFi miniatures for SciFi RPGs and miniatures which work great for Cthulhu and horror-inspired games.
Popular RPG Systems
Dungeons & Dragons - Probably the most famous RPG system and typically the one most players start with. Fantasy led though there are hundreds of settings. Link to their site.
Pathfinder - A very similar ruleset and campaign set to D&D which typically plays like an older style of the D&D ruleset. Link to their site.
Call of Cthulhu - Inspired by the novels of Lovecraft, players typically investigate mind-bending mysteries and paranormal horrors. Link to their site.
Star Wars Roleplaying Game - you got it, players play a character in the galaxy far far away and a long time ago. Link to their site.