Content of the article: "Dm Help – Guiding My Players"
Good morning everyone! First post here! I hope everyone is keeping cool and safe throughout these crazy times. Great to be here!
So I've been playing D&D for over a decade, but very on and off. A year ago I tried getting a group together and began a home-brew campaign. It's been throught a lot of changes, but I have a core of four players now – one audience member and three roleplayers.
The thing I need help with is that at this point, we are roughly 12 sessions in, and my players seem somewhat engaged but more reactive than proactive. They are all pretty new players. Thing is, I think they need a lot of guidance – usually if I don't lay out the answer for them, they'll tend to forget things and just wait for the story to take them. For example, they have several magical items for some sessions now – I've told them how to identify them, but they simply… forgot it. I've had to remind them several times of spells they have, of healing potions they've had for several sessions and can use (in order to … not die). They tend to ignore side-quests and just go straightforward;
They are about to arrive at their first big city, and there's several "quests" there that could use a little finesse – such has a heist, tailling someone, or investigating clues.
My question is: should I guide my players? I truly don't have the experience to know what hand-holding is enough? Should I remind my players to identify their items, remind them of spells or healing potions – is that healthy? Or should they also be responsible for that.
A big example is the heist mission – should I tell them "hey guys, so, its better if you stake out the house, investigate around, maybe go to the Thieves Guild and ask their help?".
Also, if I may ask fellow DMs, when do you feel your players become more independent? I love my players to death and I'm worried I may be reading this all due to inexperience – maybe my players want a different type of game, or they are more passive and just want to listen to the story.
Sorry for the wall of text – thanks everyone! Stay safe!
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