DM Guide - Newbie Nights


Hello, and thank you for being a DM for a Newbie Night event for TorontoDnD! This document will go over some of the guidelines we have for our group and what to expect at the event.

General Guidelines

The overall goal of our Newbie Night events is to teach people how to play the game we love in a comfortable, supportive and judgement free environment.

Be Newbie Friendly

As a group we strive to be welcoming to new players. D&D can be an intimidating game to get jump into, especially when you are surrounded by people you don’t know. Make sure that you give your players assistance as required with the rules and basic mechanics of the game. Be encouraging and try and foster a welcoming attitude amongst all your players.

Avoid Sensitive Content

Please avoid typically highly sensitive content including rape, racism, lynching, any sexual situations involving the PCs, sexual abuse, and explicit sexual content of any kind. Even if all your players say they want some of this content, it is simply not something we offer under any circumstances and it is not permissible to include it. If you have other content in mind that you think might be edgy please discuss it with your players at the start of the session to make sure your players are okay with it.

The intent of this guideline is to make sure that everybody feels comfortable at our tables, even if they are too nervous to admit some content makes them uncomfortable.

Be Flexible

New players can be even more unpredictable than many experienced players, which means it can be very difficult to estimate how long things will take. As they are new players feel free to give them more wiggle room in terms of hints and problem solving than you might give people you have payed with for a long time. Be prepared to add or remove content from your adventure as required in order to finish at a reasonable time. You may also be asked to add or move players after you have started if some players are late.

The Night Of: Step by Step

  1. When you arrive at the venue look for the host. If you don’t know who that is and can’t identify him/her just ask somebody working at the venue. When you talk to the host confirm the number of players you are expecting and what table you will be sitting at. Ask the host which class overviews you will be doing and make sure you are familiar with the features of that class at level one. Gather any supplies you need and start your setup.
  2. When the event begins the host will do a short overview of the basic mechanics of the game along with a few other items. After this speech is complete the players who have selected the class you were assigned will make their way to your table. You will have about 10 minutes to go over the basic class features and answer any questions that the group has. When you are finished let the host know that your players are ready.
  3. When all the class overviews are complete the players will form off into parties and make their way to your table. Once your table is full introduce yourself to your players if you haven’t already and show them the X-Card. Briefly explain its purpose and usage.
  4. Ask your players if any of them have a hard time limit. Assuming it’s a reasonable time to finish the adventure aim to have that be the end of the night. If they have to leave very early, you can write them out mid-adventure however you like.
  5. Keeping our general guidelines in mind, run the kind of game you want and have fun! If you’re not enjoying yourself it is unlikely your players are either.
  6. After your game finishes let the host know you are done for the evening. If you had any issues during your session including problematic players, concerns with the venue/staff or anything else please pull the host aside and discretely inform him of your concerns. If you have any issues with the host please contact

That's it! Thanks for reading, and thanks for running games for the members of TorontoDnD!

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