Your GM Archetype is

The Explorer

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Introduction

The Explorer is a GM Archetype characterized by Introversion, Intuition, Feeling, and Perception traits. Your mind is creative and open; you approach life with a gentle warmth when interacting with new experiences, people, and ideas. Life is a canvas in which people express themselves, and you absorb these stories to help forge a new path.

Life is a canvas in which people express themselves

You can draw inspiration from all aspects of life. You can’t help but feel a surge of creativity when you find yourself in new or unfamiliar situations. You are an adventurer with a heart, mind, and spirit that drive along the road of adventure. 

Game Mastering Styles

Gaming is a way to express yourself, and RPGs let you do that through the eyes of others. As a GM, you can see the world from endless perspectives.

 

Your creativity may be free-spirited, but having a framework to organize your ideas gives you the comfort to explore. Systems with many options and a solid core may appeal to your heart.

players can discover dozens of details about a character by exploring their world

With a simple concept ready, you favor intimate gatherings rather than large groups or multiple games. A long-term experience gives you a wealth of ideas that stem from a solid foundation. In addition, the ability to develop increasingly complex ideas over time makes for satisfying campaigns.

 

The benefit of having players with an established history is that you can explore their backgrounds each time you play. For example, players can discover dozens of details about a character by exploring their world.

 

You’re an expert at games emphasizing roleplaying and story over mechanics. You are willing to try most games, but you have preferences, and they will always find their way to the surface. Regardless of the circumstances, if people at a table want to be there with you, there is no doubt that you will give a great story.

Storytelling Style

You can read the emotions of the people at the table and adapt your play to them. You know when it’s time for a dramatic moment and when it’s time for comedic relief. There is a lingering desire to feel approved if not appreciated, which can weigh heavily when not received. However, you are focused on working with where life is in the moment, allowing you to take those burdens and amplify your storytelling.

There is beauty in even the worst moments if you know how to find it

 

Tension and release of emotion are carefully orchestrated in each session so that each session offers a moment of connection between people. What matters is not the story or the narrative elements but how people connect and grow together. There is beauty in even the worst moments if you know how to find it.

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The game will never leave players wondering where to go next, as you present every location poetically enough to make everyone feel connected to their surroundings. The most significant aspect of your stories is the life they possess. NPCs and monsters all have distinct personalities. You portray NPCs as real people with individual emotions and describe every location in the game with enough sensory details that players can imagine being there.

Table Management

When you have a table of people that you enjoy, there is a burst of enthusiasm as you push for them to express their characters as they see fit. The enjoyment of having essential core elements for the game means that everything else beyond that is not just flexible but nonessential. You establish firm boundaries for yourself from the start and expect the same from your players to ensure clarity down the road. Once that is established, you remind people that the Rule of Cool is front and center.

You're not one to have confrontations, but that's why you set boundaries

You understand what players want, and you can consider that when you make decisions. However, this giving behavior can be out of hand, as you are less likely to deny wild ideas. So you make it fair by giving everyone a slight advantage, encouraging them forward. Unfortunately, some people may see this generosity and take advantage of it. You are not one to have confrontations, but that is why you set boundaries and remind people.

 

TTRPGs are a collaborative experience; although you guide the way, you want everyone to feel like they are contributing to the journey.

Session Resources

Some would describe you as a passionate experimenter driven by a unique perspective and a simple desire to be true to what feels right. Dozens of systems are available to supplement adventures, from battle maps, virtual tabletops (VTT), audio for ambiance, and so many more. You know them all, you have used most of them on more than one occasion, but few are considered part of your immediate tool belt. You thrive on adventure, and the fact that it may call you suddenly in a different direction means you have to be adjustable.

Some would describe you as a passionate experimenter driven by a unique perspective

You might have a collection of maps collected or created. There are moments when you find yourself playing music from an online playlist, and several sessions later, you’ve completed the perfect gaming ambiance. Finally, you plan campaigns with limited foresight; in these stages, it’s best to use tools that help establish the baseline.


When players at your table reveal a preference, such as maps or visual references, to aid in their experience, you are quick at showing a nearly magic affinity for crafting. This response is when your adventuring experience and resource collections come in handy. Your goal remains to make everything around you a little more beautiful each time you interact, and you believe a happy heart is truly a mark of beauty.

 

The Game Master's Toolbox:

  • World Anvil: A worldbuilding program that helps you create, organize and store your setting with detailed wiki-like organization and interactive maps to store your notes.
  • DnD Beyond: An excellent place for digital character creation and creating a campaign group for easy roll shares and sheet management.
  • Notion (TTRPG University Notion Templates)
  • Evernote
  • DnD Beyond’s Encounter Builder: I’ve heard it’s helpful. You can build an encounter and determine its difficulty level based on math. 

Role Generator: You can randomly generate everything from cities, to magic items, to herbs, to NPCs. https://www.rolegenerator.com/

  • Inkarnate: For fantasy world and city maps. Yearly subscription.
  • Wonderdraft: For fantasy world and city maps. One-time purchase.
  • Dungeon Scrawl: For creating flat and isometric dungeon maps. Completely free.
  • Dungeondraft: Building and Dungeon crawl maps, full color.
  • Azgaar Github Fantasy Map Generator
  • Dungeon Fog: Free map-making tool
  • Dungeon Map Doodler
  • Spotify: There are so many D&D playlists to choose from, or, pick your favorite video game tracks to play.
  • Syrinscape: With Syrinscape, you can control the master playlist and players can decide their preferred volume from their end.
  • YouTube Premium: Put on a 3-hour ambiance video without commercial interruptions.
  • DMs Guild: A place to find supplemental guides and campaigns to enhance your official D&D content.
  • Drive Thru RPG: The all-TTRPG sister of DMs Guild.
  • The Monsters Know: A book series about monster tactics and strategies to help enhance gameplay.
  • Reddit
  • Point Buy Calculator: Doing a character sheet from scratch? This will help so much with the number crunching. https://chicken-dinner.com/5e/5e-point-buy.html
  • DnD Beyond: The best place to build a digital character sheet. Fully connected to all the official D&D content. Makes leveling up take about 30 seconds.
  • Wild Shape Tracker: Super helpful for druids. https://arcaneeye.com/apps/wildshape-tracker/
  • Character Backstory Template: https://arcaneeye.com/dm-tools-5e/dnd-character-backstory-template/
  • Xanathar’s Guide to Everything: I use this particular book ALL the time to help build my character backstories. There are roll tables in the “This is Your Life” chapter.
  • Google Dice Roller: Super simple. Go to Google, type “dice roller,” and you have a dice roller.
  • Roll Dice With Friends: You can give your temporary room a custom name, share the link with your friends, and all roll together!
  • Owlbear Rodeo (straightforward and intuitive)
  • Canva (DIY, simplified VTT)
  • Roll20 (complicated learning curve)
  • Foundry VTT
  • Norse Foundry
  • Shard
  • Tablespire
  • Tabletop Simulator
  • Fantasy Grounds

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