The Dungeon Master’s Handbook: Tips from February 2023

Here are the top ten Dungeon/Game Master tips that I posted to various social media channels in February 2023. These tips are great for almost any TTRPG like Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, or Worlds Without Number.

  • Instead of random one-shots, build one-shots that fill out a piece of the main campaign story as yet untold.
  • Don’t just call a battle over when it gets long. Have a plan to finish a battle early that makes sense in the story.
  • Inanimate objects that radiate death make great powerful bosses. You can’t stun a pillar!
  • We all make mistakes when running a D&D game. Relax and move on – we’ll all get better with every game we run.
  • Have players roll the recharges on monster powers so the others will blame someone other than you when Orcus kills them.
  • Watch your players’ reactions to the battle. Are they angry and stressed for the right reasons or the wrong ones?
  • Interesting villains might turn sides and become powerful allies. Leave open the possibility.
  • Whether to kill, capture, or release a defeated foe is always an easy and interesting choice to give players.
  • Don’t be afraid for a powerful monster to cast blasts on his own guys in order to hit a lot of players.
  • Just because all of your monsters are statistically the same doesn’t mean your players need to know that. Pretend one’s a boss.

These tips are courtesy of Mike Shea at

If you have any questions please leave them in the comments below. Cheers!

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