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Brent P. Newhall @BrentNewhall

Advice requested!

Tomorrow I'll be running a "Let's Play Dungeons & Dragons" panel at a local anime convention. It's pitched towards people with either no exposure to D&D, or who maybe watch some Critical Role or similar.

I'll start with a quick "What's Role-Playing" intro, then dive into a simple adventure with audience volunteers, explaining D&D 5E rules as we go. Then I'll summarize rules and point the audience to resources.

What would you do in a panel like this? What am I missing?

@BrentNewhall I can't imagine not mentioning ways that D&D has influenced Japanese media, from obvious examples (Slayers, JRPGs) to less obvious ones (Fate/stay Night stat sheets).


@BrentNewhall The biggest thing that comes to mind for me is to explain that while certain things are well defined, there's always a place for creative solutions & actions. Also, character sheets should be pre-generated & limited in scope and made visible to the audience (projector/slides?). Name, Class, Core stats, and 2-3 simple special abilities at most to avoid overwhelming your volunteers. I would also spend more time on RP scenes than combat.

@BenKramer @BrentNewhall I'd make sure you push the idea that it's a collaborative fun experience, not a DM trying to defeat the players. Sometimes players want to act non-optimally for better rp

Probably worth throwing a shoutout to Chaos Dragon:

It's an anime based off a role playing session had between a couple of writers in the anime industry.

It's OK. But you can definitely see how role playing and anime intersect when you watch it.

@BrentNewhall when I've done this I let the entire audience participate, using shared characters and tossing a beachball around at each decision point.

@BrentNewhall Have you already practiced this in front of people who are like your target audience?

@brainwane I've run through the material, but not in front of an audience. I don't have access to a group of people similar to my target audience willing to sit through a 2-hour practice run.

@BrentNewhall Personally, if I'd understood sooner that RPG's are essentially cooperative, not competitive, I'd have been a better GM.

Talk about setting? Ways it will attract and any warnings that might be useful? Recommend some safety tools?

If you've only a couple hours then the combat needs to be fast but still demonstrative. Encourage the players to use a wide range of abilities to show off key mechanics.

At least one fireball should be thrown.

Are you going to start the action in media Res?