What Dungeons and Dragons has Taught Me

 

 

D&D (or DnD) has made a major comeback in popular culture today. I have been playing with friends for months, and I have learned a lot about the game and about life

 

It requires quick decision making.

As an extremely indecisive person, this was a major learning curve for me. The first session took way more time than necessary because I and other members were too indecisive on each and every decision. The truth is, there are infinite ways to meet the ends, and spending ten minutes to decide which move to use or what space to land on doesn’t make the result any better. Some decisions do require planning, but the majority of decisions don’t really. Make the choice, roll the dice, and then see what’s next. Most of the time, a decision is never too wrong to fix.

 

Canceling D&D plans is highly inconsiderate.

With most things, dependability is essential to success. With work, school, and other responsibilities you can’t cancel plans and leave other people hanging and scrambling. Just because Dungeons and Dragons is with friends, doesn’t mean you are exempt from responsibility. The DM has to put a lot of time into designing each campaign, and every member is essential. You can’t degrade the work that’s been put in and let the group down. If you committed to a date and time, always try to keep the commitment.

 

Not every character will survive to the end of the campaign. And that’s okay.

You grow to love your the characters you create and the characters in your party. But even if you’re attached to them, they are still just fictional characters. No one survives life, and it’s even harder to survive when your world is riddled with monsters and violence and problems. The first time one of my characters died, I was shook. What now? But with anything, you move forward, make a new character, and keep the memories. Besides what better way to go than being a pyromaniac fire-based mage that willingly sacrificed myself to a massive fire elemental lord?

 

It doesn’t always go your way. And that’s what makes it fun.

If in every fight and situation, the party just went and rolled over the competition and taking no damage, campaigns would be 20 minutes and boring. What makes D&D so exciting is the struggle and the possibility that you may not succeed. The failures and tough times highlight the successes and the totally badass moves.

 

Constantly questioning the DM’s decisions is unhelpful and rude.

As I said earlier, the Dungeon Master spends hours to create and perfect each campaign. And creatively interpreting rolls and actions to fit the numbers and storyline takes a lot of talent and energy. I would say that the DM has the hardest job, no doubt. And as the crafter of lore and results, they sometimes have to give bad news and unwanted calls, but that’s part of the job. And arguing every roll and choice wastes time and ignores the difficult job they have. Appreciate your DM (Or that necromancer might accidentally target you the whole fight).  

 

The role-play less traveled makes for the best memories

It gets boring going through the same motions, with the same tactics, and the same moves every fight. D&D is so great because you can do anything. It’s expected to throw attacks at the bandits and thieves breaking the city’s infrastructure, but it’s way cooler to convince them you work for their boss and get them to fix the damage. The rogue may have told you it was a stealth mission, but lighting the stables on fire and riding off with the stolen horses makes for a better story anyway. Don’t always take the expected route.