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Youth DM Masterclass in Videos

So, I'm pretty confident at this point that I can point new Dungeon Masters, particularly those who want to DM for a group of Kids, to a set of videos on Youtube, and have them pretty darn equipped to start running games this weekend. 

Seriously, these videos pretty much sum up what I think one needs to know to get a group of kids sucked into a game and rolling dice in pretty short order. If you're getting ready to DM for some kids for the first time, and you have no idea where to start, I'm hoping that you will find this post to be a life saver!

Photo by Nika Benedictova on Unsplash
 I listen to these videos on my commute (like a podcast). If there's a visual I really need to see, I just revisit the video later.

Bear in mind, these videos will help you run the game. You will still need some basic components to get going, but I've got those covered in these posts:

The Absolute Basics

These are the videos that teach you the core mechanic[s] of the game. Understand these fundamentals, and you can probably make up the rest of the details. Literally, all you need to understand to be a great DM for your players is in these first two videos. Yes, there's still character creation and combat and all of those things, but if you get this core mechanic, you are 70+% there. The rest is the surface details that flesh out the game. These first two videos are the skeleton / internal organs... basically the entire innards / foundation of the game. 

Understanding the Core Mechanic  

If you need more on this core mechanic, see The Quest for Improvement section below, which has more videos on each of these topics.

The Core Component - Helping your players make a Character

If you need more on this core component, see The Quest for Improvement section below, which has more videos on each of these topics. 

Game Space - Making a Safe Environment. 

The Essential Pillars

These videos outline the details you will likely need to play the game. These are the rules that support the core mechanic of the game, allowing you to build great experiences for your players. 


Yes, your players are going to want to fight and kill things... That's a big part of D&D. Here are the basics from encounter building to what exactly happens in combat. 


Role Playing

You don't have to be a professional voice actor to provide solid role playing experiences for your players.  


In other words, see "Understanding the Core Mechanic" above. 

Why these videos?? 

So, why did I choose the above videos as being representative of the entire D&D experience? I find them the most useful. There are a ton of folks making videos about playing D&D from Colville to Mercer, from the Dungeon Dudes to Ginny Di, and all are great! The above videos, from my perspective, most succinctly explain these ideas to a new DM, without a lot of fluff and fiddly bits. I love the, "This is what you need to know" approach. Now, that said, I branch out a lot more in this next section, which I consider to be the next steps. This is where you reflect and improve on this new-found skill.

The Quest for Improvement

These videos are ones you should check out after you've tried running a game. They will help you reflect on your experience and improve / expand your DM toolbox. I actually watch and re-watch the above videos frequently as well, and I've been playing and Dungeon Mastering off and on since 1992... 

"Level Up letterpress" by artnoose is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Improving your Understanding of the Core Mechanics 

A deeper look at Character Creation

More on Safety Tools and Session Zero

The Pillars - Advanced Combat

The Pillars - NPC's and Role Playing

The Pillars - Exploration

Playlists & Channels for new DM's & Players

There are tons of creators out there providing really great content that gets into the finer details of running and playing the game. I am subscribed to so many of them, and I don't want to leave anyone out, but these are the go-to playlists / channels for folks who are just starting out.

  1. Handbooker Helper - from the folks at Critical Role, this is a super-helpful & simple rules primer.
  2. Dungeon University - All of PDM's videos on playing the game stolen from his playlist.  
  3. Most Useful SlyFlourish Videos - The 8 Steps of the Lazy Dungeonmaster is a life-changing revalation... and that's just the first video.
  4. DM & Player Tips from Bob Worldbuilder
  5. VTT Resources - My Playlist of videos by myself & others on playing online.  

Again, there's so much more. I'm just trying to get you started. 



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