For D&D and its players, there always lives a Dungeon Master (DM), hunched over a table late at night with only a dim desk lamp to illuminate their works.
On pen, on paper, with rulers and grids, the DM stays awake. They place enemies in arenas, traps in the floors, and treasure in secret rooms no one will ever find. They tell their tales and craft their characters, making sure each has a different personality, trait and opinion. So the next day their players will fall down the rabbit hole of adventure.
One that begins with meeting a mysterious strider in a tavern and somehow eventually leads into a final confrontation with Grolantor, The Hill Giant God of War.
The stories DMs create are fascinating. Running your own homebrew story is an adventure that is purely yours, where you can showcase aspects of your personality and wit.
Or if you’re running an official campaign, you can take the moment to surprise your party with your showmanship. Maybe captivate them with twists and turns in the narrative that you learned the night before. Even if the twist is the death of a beloved character. It is a surprise to be sure, but a welcome one.
These twists won't be just new and exciting for your players but also for you, you will see how players react and what their characters do in the game.
Sometimes they will do what is expected but sometimes it will be unpredictable and the room will roar with awe or anger. If this sounds fun, if being a god of an imaginary world appeals to you, if being able to equally raise or ruin your players, or if you just like being the showman who brings characters and worlds alive, maybe try to be a DM.
Being the DM of your party is a lot of effort, there is plenty of work but an equal amount of reward.
You do have to spend the day or night before knowing the story and the Non-Playable Characters (NPCs) in it. You will have to know how to properly provide them with a voice that suits their personality and traits. And know how they would make decisions in response to your players. For the story aspects, you will need to know it all very well, as you will need to keep the story flowing based on your players unpredictable actions.
Finally DMs work as mediators and judges, so you must know the rules and when to bend or break them.
Unlike Players who need no preparation before a session (aside from levelling up their characters), some DMs do not have the luxury of being able to “wing it” and improvise story arcs without preparation. T
here is work in being a DM, but with the right players it will not go unappreciated. The stories you weave and the world you build will leave your players, even the most passive player, engaged.
Tell us about your best Dungeon Master Stories below we always love to hear your tales of wonder!