Instructables

The Final Result in a 3 Month Study... How D&D Works.

Picture of The Final Result in a 3 Month Study... How D&D Works.

I have been away from Instructables for about 3 months now...in those 3 months I have studied how D&D works...and in that time, I have learned how the game works...and now I share that with you!

Lets get started.
 
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Step 1: Step One: Beginners Guide to D&D (1357 Paged PDF)

Picture of Step One: Beginners Guide to D&D (1357 Paged PDF)

I have gathered all of the text and tutorials by WotC (Wizards of the Coast) website, to make a powerful 1357 Paged PDF all on D&D and a new website...It should be the most time consuming thing that I have done so far...but after 6 grueling hours, I have finally put work and effort into reward and I have shared my reward to the world on my new website!

BTW: My other websites have taken up too much bandwidth, so I have deleted them to correct my bandwidth problem...they weren't all that popular... sorry :(

Here is the website...

http://www.yourdndanswers.webs.com/

If you are in need of dice, some websites sell role-playing dice for next to nothing, and you can buy 100 role-playing dice for 28 USD... (called pound o' dice)

And the downloads section stores the download to this monstrous 1,357 Paged PDF
(6.05 MB in size) (45 Kilobits per Page of Disk Space)

This should take some time to completely read, but in a legal note... I did not create the text of the PDF, I just took the free online D&D tutorials that were on free download on the WotC website, and just copied and pasted them onto a Word Document, and from there proceeded to export the huge document as a PDF.

Well now that you have gotten the PDF lets move onto the next step...


actinoidlanthanoid (author) 3 months ago

It seems as if the servers at webs.com have purged my websites from their database around the ending of 2012.

I wasn't anticipating such a drastic measure, but I still have records of the document on my Mediafire account.

http://www.mediafire.com/download/ztuog1whuqwljlz/...

actinoidlanthanoid (author) 3 years ago
I have answered your problems, from Dice Issues to Having your Rule-Books with you, I am still going to constantly update this Instructable, so if you see an error (that has nothing grammatical) I can update it for you...

Constructive Criticism is always accepted, and updated on my Instructables, nasty and rude comments are unnecessary, and will not go anywhere on the Instructable...
For anyone reading this article. The information in here is VASTLY outdated and needs a complete overhaul to the game.

Playing 2nd, 3rd, or 4th edition I would say over 75% of this guide doens't apply anymore.

From the very Weird ways of rolling dice, to the suggestion of stats on a wizard (con 7/ low int), Terminology, ect... has many errors in it. I would do a complete revamp of the entire guide. The guide isn't very old, 3rd edition was out before this was created.
adamazing3 years ago
To figure your stats, you take a d4 die (or according to my method, take a single d6 die, and modify your result by 1d6 - 2 to have the maximum of 4 and the minimum of 1)


This bit is very suspect. If you mean, roll a d6 and take 2 off of any number higher than 4 ( i.e. 5 or 6) this is wrong. You'll end up with a bias toward higher scores. There are now 2 ways to make "3" (by rolling a 3 or a 5) and 2 ways to make a "4" (by rolling a 4 or 6). This gives a 1/3 probability of "rolling" a 3 or a 4 and a 1/6 probability of rolling a 1 or a 2. This means you're twice as likely to have a 3 or a 4 come up.

Equally if you take 2 off of every roll, and impose a minimum value of 1, you end up with a 1 in 2 chance of rolling a "1". (1,2,3 all map to 1 giving a probability of 3 in 6). With all other numbers being a 1/6 chance.


To see why your d30 substitute of rolling 5d6 is wrong, go to Wolfram Alpha and look at 1d30 and 5d6. Compare the probability distribution graphs. You will see why this is a bad idea. But adding or subtracting a bias is a really bad idea. From another example you give, iIf you try to get a d30 by taking 3d6s and adding 12 everytime, you've just removed the possibility of getting any number below 15!!

If you're really desperate for a d4, or you're just starting out and don't want to go out and buy a set of dice you could go to Wolfram Alpha and click Roll Again 6 times, or go to one of the sites you get by searching for "d&d dice app", such as this one (from WotC incidentally). Or download a dice app for your smart-phone etc.. But these solutions will not be totally random, only pseudo-random. However they won't have the whopping biases seen above.


Sorry if this comes across as really critical, but it's quite a fundamental part of the game, i.e. generating random numbers using dice in order to determine outcomes. If the numbers cease to be random (combining lower-numbered die rolls), or become consistently slanted (by using "modifiers") then you're kicking the legs out from under the game. There *are* certain modifiers that are legitimately added to die rolls, with the express intent of biasing them, e.g. you have a sword that gives you a +1 modifier to attack rolls, but these are part of the game. Using "modifiers" to make up for not having the right dice is not part of the game. Hope this helps.
actinoidlanthanoid (author)  adamazing3 years ago
I know, I need to work on it some more, i was figuring that I could just buy the regular dice set for next to nothing... but I will update this Instructable with a bunch of links to dice roll simulators...but thanks for the positive feedback :D
No worries! There's a lot of mathematics that is counter-intuitive, and it's easy to get tripped up by something that looks sensible on the face of it, e.g. 5d6 vs. 1d30.


Another alternative to a d4 would be to make a "spinner", a square of stiff card with a pencil through the centre point and numbers 1 to 4 on the sides. Spin it like a top/dreidel and whichever side it lands on is the number you use. :) You can do this with other die by picking regular shapes with an appropriate number of sides. Once you get up to a d30 though making a balanced spinner might be a tad tricky!
actinoidlanthanoid (author)  adamazing3 years ago
That is a way better idea on how to make dice, than Dean Hale from Expert Village trying to tell people to sculpt dice from crumpled up aluminum foil with a butter knife and painting over it...
Abilities:
Newcomers 4D6 drop the lowest (gives them room for error)
Vets Classic 3D6

This is the tried and true method that any DM with years under their belt will tell you. Most of the DM's who played in Second Edition have excellent math skills and can vouch this is the perfect method.

For any ODD rolls. i'e 1d3 1d30 1d45 ect.. Just get a APP....
Android, Iphone, PC every platform has free dice roller apps... Trying to rig dice to do it just ruins the probability table.

A Wizard of any kind would have his highest scores as CON & INT.
Mana doesn't exist in Classic D&D world. Proper terminology helps newcomers here. I would never put a negative number (or allow a newcomer) to put a negative modifier in a CON slot. The idea is if a Ability score hits 0 you die. Evey time you resurrect a character their Con decreases by 1 permanently.

Come play with us anytime. IT's a game that you learn by playing. : )
the simplest way to simulate a d4 using a d6 without spoiling the probability's would be to roll a d6 and re-roll on a 5 or 6.
to roll dice you can bring a laptop and go to http://www.wizards.com/dnd/dice/dice.htm and use an auto dice roller
something about rolling d4 for abilities just rubs me wrong...
I haven't kept current on the rules, but nothing says D&D like rolling 3d6.
and d6 can be had ANYWHERE... Yahtzee, craps, monopoly...just to name a few.

House rules sometimes change things, but usually for the better.
and by that time, at least the GM will be familiar enough with the game to set reasonable rules.
Kiteman3 years ago
If you have all the tutorials, do you actually need the rule-books?

actinoidlanthanoid (author)  Kiteman3 years ago
I would recommend the rule-books, just because I myself made some mistakes in the making of this tutorial (the dice was a perfect example)

I am only human, and all tutorials are made by humans...so there could be some mistakes... But it really depends on what version of D&D you are playing, the older versions aren't as complicated, and you could rely mostly on the tutorials, so you wouldn't have to buy the rule-books...

It just all depends on the version of the game you are playing, It is just a necessity these days in D&D to carry around legitimate proof of the rules and guidelines, in which my PDF came from the official website...

http://www.wizards.com/dnd/

WotC are the people who own the rights to Dungeons and Dragons, therefore they are paid to know this kind of stuff...

But I would recommend some sort of proof... some books that are used, but in good or excellent condition are selling for around 5 to 10 dollars (USD)

And Role-Playing dice sell for next to nothing... but I would be afraid of the criticism of carrying around Role-Playing dice...especially the neighborhood that I live in...

But i would recommend solid proof, so that you know the tutorials that you are getting are legitimate... I make mistakes, every human makes mistakes...its only natural...second-nature...
They have really improved game play in the 4.0 edition, I highly recommend. But if you want a game to kick back and drink try Dungeon Squad or Microlite 20, really easy simple rules. D&D goes for depth and reality, the others I have mentioned can be played by brain-dead monkeys.
as an old-school player (started playing back in the 80's)...
though I stopped right around the time Advanced rules went to the 2.5 version...

I can say, without a doubt, If you are thinking of taking up the game, either borrow a copy of the players guide book, or get your own.

You COULD start with the "quick start rules" on http://www.wizards.com/dnd/TryDnD.aspx. It's enough to get you started... but inside of a session or two, your group will want at least a copy of the players guide, dungeon masters guide, and the monster manual.

At the risk of sounding like a commercial, Half-priced books usually has a nice stock of everything from the really-old school "basic D&d" through AD&D 3.5 rule books. Cheap.


As for dice... the net contains more random number generators than you can shake a stick at(like http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dnd/20040517a). There are also a couple instructables that deal with making your own, super-cool dice.
I'm as old-school as you are (I remember when WoC were an upstart little company with a fancy new card game) - I just wondered if the tutorials would replace my long-lost books.

Looks like a LOT has changed since the first edition. *grabs cane and hobbles off*
yip
I like the older versions better, but I also like the newer monsters of D&D... its a fence worth straddling...

(Figurative speech, meaning that there are 2 sides and the neutral person is always "straddling the fence")