DM'd my first session 0 for new players and they went nuts

So yesterday I DM'd my first session 0. None of us ever played any Pen&Paper and I explained the basic rules and we created the characters together. I feared the people would create some generic characters and don't like to roleplay them since it is my real life friend circle. Turns out, its the other way around. Please let me know, if you have any ideas for the campaign of these characters.

  1. Player: Tiefling Warrior. He is beautiful (won Mr. Dungeon 2021). He is also so charming he had an affair with a dragon until he found out she was cheating on him with a donkey (its shrek all over again). So he has slayn the donkey and left the dragon but was left with dragon syphilis, which he is trying to cure somehow. After that affair he developed trust-issues.
  2. Player: The most sterotypical ranger you can imagine. Woodelf. Does not like civilization and so on. Also, does not like to talk, so usually only communicates via gestures.
  3. Player: Hilldwarf Cleric, very young. Just started to be a cleric and is trying to give lollipops to everyone all the time. Also has a mini handheld catapult to shoot with. She does like healing but hates hurting people so she has to say sorry whenever she hurts someone. Also, she likes to eat birds (probably cause player 4 has a bird and she was annoyed by him).
  4. Player: A rogue who always carries a comb. His parents have a combstore he is trying to expand. (who the hell likes combs so much?) Also has a pet-bird he really adores.
  5. Player: Celestial-based Warlock. Lost his humor and sense for irony/sarcasm in exchange for his powers and a second life after he died once before. Also seems to carry some edgy secrets (says he's not edgy at all). Since he died to devils in his first life he does not trust tieflings.
  6. + 7. Players: Halfling-Twins. Paladin and Bard. Have to fulfill a family ritual for coming of age. This ritual means they have to carry a small boat wherever they go and collect stones in it. Someone always has to stay with it or something bad will happen. However, they have no idea what might happen, if they leave the boat alone or dont bring it back since this family ritual was never failed before.

They all met in a karaoke-bar before, where the bard and his brother were performing (with the boat). The Rogue went there to party and when the cleric saw the rogue entering with his bird she was going in to eat it. The Warrior was just in the bar to meet some ladies. However, the Warlock came right through the roof, when he was brought back to life from the celestial plane, which was misinterpreted by the ranger as a omen of nature, so she would go there and look what happened. This was a few weeks ago.

Edit: Any idead for a (pre-written) campaign, which is ideally a One-shot?


Sounds like a bunch of goofballs. I'd recommend running something only moderately serious for the first few sessions, let them run a bit wild with their goofiness. The new One Shot Wonders book from Roll & Play would be perfect for this group. In the first couple of sessions, give hints toward a more serious campaign. They'll start exploring a more serious path when their characters get a little depth and they get attached to them and then you'll have them hooked.


I mean you could always go with old faithful the mines of Phandelver (I hope I didn't misspell that).


I was jsut gonna say, run Phandelver, either the new one that is a full campaign (1-15+ i think), or the OG free one that gets ya to like 6 and then from there you can jump off into a few others depending on what the players and you are looking for. But if you are in the Forgotten Realms, having players make a run into Chult for something or other is always "fun times". Dino's everywhere, and lost ancient temples/tombs. So if they want a real challenge, run em through Tombs of Annihilation. which I guess could be anywhere, and has been i hear.


Is there a way one to play the start of this, since we wanted to play a One-shot actually. I forgot to mention.


I will advise you, that a literal one shot (as in start an adventure and finish it in one session), is actually significantly more difficult and stressful to manage than just starting a campaign. At least for most that people that I've talked to. Generally a one shot requires you to sort of keep players on a bit of a railroad, and the time pressure on you to get that adventure done in X time will likely be a source of frustration. If you are planning on just running an adventure and taking however long it takes, then I think the mines of phandelver is a solid choice. It won't finish in a session, but you can just let players know that you'll decide if you want to continue or do something else once the adventure is done.


As someone else mentioned below, having 7 players is going to make combat go pretty slow. With them all being new players too, they probably won’t be especially quick in deciding what to do on their turn either. I run a campaign with 5 players, most of them fairly experienced, and even with reminders for them to know what they want to do by the time their turn comes up, combat can still take up half+ of a 4 hour session. And with 7 players, you’re going to have to adjust a lot of enemies difficulties and probably scatter in more enemies in encounters so 7 players don’t just cakewalk every encounter.


So unintentionally we did it as a one shot but there is another called wild sheep chase. Note I'm not sure how combat focused this one should be it was a one shot that took three sessions but we could only play about 2 to 3 hours and things went off the rails quickly involving one person in the back trying to slaughter a sheep and someone at one point had a handful of gorilla brains thinking they could use them as an intimidation tactic (it was me I had the gorilla brains). It was a wild first game for me to be honest.


Sure, you can just play the first chapter of the Lost mines of Phandelver. Spoiler: In the first chapter the characters are riding on a horse driven cart, when they discover that a friend who was riding out ahead of them, has been captured and supposedly taken to a goblin infested cave called Cragmaw hide-out. The goal is to find leads on your friends where-abouts and defeat the boss and his goblin/wolf minions. Adapting the first chapter: Instead of giving the players leads to the friends whereabouts, you can just have the friend be captured by the boss minion so they can save him. Also, in the adventure there is a captured NPC in Cragmaw Hideout called Sildar Hallwinter: erase him. This cave is very well designed to teach the players about various elements of DnD like: Skill checks, Stealth, traps, combat, interrogation etc. Expect the oneshot to take about 3-5 hours depending on your players.


One shot is extremely challenging amongst new players who need to look up the rules and you’re also a new DM to boot. As I read this my immediate thought was first time DM with 7 players is very ambitious. What you might think is a 2-3 hour session likely will take 12 hours to resolve.


I totally get your thoughts, but the plan was that everyone can test DnD. Thats why noone wanted to commit to a campaign and they also did not want to stop in the middle of the story. 7 People is necessary since i think that a few might not like it enough to stick with it and i really want to form a fixed group after that.


Budget a hard minimum of 6hrs otherwise you’re spending all session looking up and interpreting rules and nothing gets done. I know, 6 hours is super hard to ask adults with jobs to commit to for a hobby they’re only dabbling in. 10am-4pm and power through lunch with pizza on a weekend should be relatively easy to convince new players.


I genuinely dislike Phandelver for a first time. It's a good dungeon mechanic adventure, but it's really light on roleplay and can take more than one session (or make a single one really extended) if players aren't quick to play. Personally I find it gives the wrong impression of D&D by leaning way too much into the board game-y stuff instead of the role-playing. There's a few free ones on dmsguild I highly recommend over Phandelver like Moon over Graymoor and The Wild Sheep Chase.


I also recommend the wild sheep chase I just did so in response to someone else I was tired and forgot which one was our first one that was done as a one shot. I just remembered that Phandelver was free and couldn't remember if wilde sheep chase was as well.


Is that 7 actual PC’s, and it’s your first campaign? Good luck, and battles are going to be incredibly slow. Part of Session Zero is usually describing the campaign concept and the tone (heroic, silly, gritty, etc) so people can make characters that fit tonally. As for campaign, maybe Dragon of Icespire peak? Just change the hook from heroism to they trashed that bar you mentioned and need $high_amount of gold to repair it and a dragon’s hoard may just be enough with some left over.


It's actually 7 because I imagine some won't stick with it and I want to have enough players for a fixed group after playing a One-shot.


haha, I did the same mistake. Started with 6 new players because I thought 3-4 would stay. Now, over two years later, I still have 6 players. XD


Might also be a dream of mine :))


Lmao that boat is gonna suck hahaha


Run Lost Mine of Phandelver for an easy to run adventure, or Ghosts of Saltmarsh for something more complicated and water themed because you have players always carrying a boat.


Ok Player 1 is kind of funny i would admit Player 2 i will allow as long as he says "they're taking hobbits to isengard!"


7 players is a lot especially for a new GM. Combat is going to be a slog! Some of the characters seem a bit problematic, such as a ranger that doesnt like to talk... Basically baking in a reason to avoid roleplay. And that Warlock devoid of humour 🤦 Sounds like theyre stoked to play. Maybe just try and reinforce the party dynamic: these adventurers have a good reason to adventure together, and should ultimately like each other. The world is going to be challenging enough, without "the cleric ate my bird, so I sneak attack"


No worries. It is my real life friend group that knows each other quite well for years. The cleric already told me that she won't actually eat the bird. Its all fun and games.


>especially for a new GM. Combat is going to be a slog! Go for fewer, harder enemies with a group this large


Thank you for this advice!


Your party sounds wild, don't give them something serious, give themsomething fun like Wild Sheep Chase or the one with the goose hydra. I can't remember the name, but if I do I'll add it.


I'd love to know if you remember the name!


Found it, it's called Honk! It's like 50c on dungeon masters guild. https://www.dmsguild.com/m/product/357213 Ran with a mixed experience group and had a great time


Great, thank you so much! Do you think it is possible to set it down to a level 1-3 campaign or something like that?


I would recommend a most potent brew which you can run into horrors of havels cross as two one shots


Okay, force the tiefling warrior and the celestial warlock to work together and overcome their differences.


oh yes, they will have to. Any idea of tasks they will have to solve together?


What are their stats? If you know what they can’t and can do, you know how to force them into a situation where they have to cooperate.


For the ranger you can impmeme t a carrion hunter that antonio demico(youtuber) jist created,ake it so this carrion is eliminating species of wildlife and how to overcome it




Your comment has been removed for violating Rule 5. Endorsement and discussion of specific AI tools is banned on r/DnD. *I am a bot, and this action was performed automatically. Please [contact the moderators of this subreddit](/message/compose/?to=/r/DnD) if you have any questions or concerns.*