DM are a key element to Living Eberron; they run the exciting adventures players will be talking about. In addition, their adventures enrich the setting with new places, people, and organizations. This guide outlines how to propose and run games in Living Eberron; for details on playing a PC, see the Player's Guide.
Basic Conduct Edit
The rules for DMs are the same as for players in terms of conduct. LEB is one of ENWorld's play-by-post forums, and thus all regular rules for the message boards are in effect. If there is any confusion on this, consult the ENWorld FAQ or email any moderator or judge.
In order to participate, we request that you set your settings on the message board so that private messaging is available to other participants in the game. This can be done by editing your options to Enable Private Messaging. Allowing private messaging is important because if you do not allow them, DMs and judges will have a much harder time contacting you.
Proposing Adventures Edit
- Main article: LEB:Proposing Adventures
Once you have an idea for an adventure, you should contact the judges with the details. The format of the adventure proposal and its process for approval may be found here.
Starting the Adventure Edit
When an adventure is approved, then you can begin recruiting if necessary. The tavern thread is the usual place to go to find a party of adventurers, though the you may arrange a different beginning by discussing it out of character in the discussion thread. You need not take all comers; you may choose as they see fit from among the characters who express interest. We strongly encouraged that you offer openings to players that do not already have a character on an adventure.
After the adventuring party is formed, you need to find a judge that is not playing in that adventure to watch the adventure. This judge has the responsibility to step in if you disappear, and can override you if necessary. This should be very rare, and would only happen in response to abuse by you.
Finally, once you start a thread in the forum for the adventure (it is customary to prepend the title with the tag [Adventure]), create an entry for the adventure on the adventures page. Note the game name, thread, the DM, the judge, and the players. This entry should be updated as rewards (XP/gold) are given.
Running the Adventure Edit
When proposing or running your adventure, you are not as limited as players in terms of what sources they may use. Feel free to use monsters from non-approved sources, or custom monsters, as long as they fall within the DMG's guidelines for customizing monsters. When in doubt, consult a judge. The exception is items; if you intend to have items in your game that might possibly fall into the players' hands, they should either be from approved sources or you should clear the item with the judges first.
You should make clear any playing assumptions to your players earlier on: How they will roll actions (or whether you will handle that), expectations on the frequency of posting, and so on.
Handing Out Rewards Edit
XP Awards Edit
You may award XP and treasure when you see fit as approved in the adventure proposal. Generally, it is a good idea to award treasure after the encounter where the parcel was acquired and to give XP either after each encounter or when the total XP earned would push character to earn a new level. Remember to use LEB's XP reward system for determining XP rewards; these should have been detailed in your proposal.
Treasure Awards Edit
For awarding treasure, we utilize a modified treasure parcel system. Over the course of five adventures (half a tier), a PC is expected to earn four magic items ranging from level one higher than their level when they received it to four levels higher. In addition, it is expected they will earn a parcel of gold equal to the cost of a magic item of the their level when the parcel was received and additional split of gold as part of their share equal to 1/5th the same cost. We make sure that this distribution is consistent across players and DMs by requiring players to indicate what parcels were received and having DMs only award unallocated parcels.
So, how do you reward treasure during an adventure? Each player receives one treasure parcel per level while adventuring. To determine which parcel to award a given character, examine their wish list of items (if they have one) for suggestions and what items parcels they have already received during their current half-a-tier (levels 1–5, 6–10, 11–15, and so on). You may reward them any parcel they have not yet earned during that half-a-tier. The eligible parcels are:
- A magic item of level n+1 (where n is the level of the character when they gained the parcel)
- An item of level n+2
- An item of level n+3
- An item of level n+4
- An amount of gold equal to the cost of a level n magic item
As an example, consider Harbinger, a 4th level Avenger on adventure. Harbinger, during character creation, chose a parcel at level 1, one at level 2, and one at level 3. His choices were:
- 1st: A level 3 item (He chose the n+2 parcel for level 1; 1+2=3)
- 2nd: A level 5 item (He chose the n+3 parcel for level 2; 2+3=5)
- 3rd: A level 7 item (He chose the n+4 for level 3; 3+4=7)
Thus, when a DM awards Harbinger a treasure parcel during his adventure, Harbinger earns either an item of level 5 (the item level n+1 parcel) or 840gp (the gold parcel); similarly, sometime during level 5, Harbinger would earn the final remaining parcel (an item of level 6 (n+1 parcel) or 1000gp (the gold parcel)).
Remember, each character earns one parcel per level.
In addition to the parcels listed above, each character receives gold equal to 1/5th the cost of a magic item of their level. For example, during 4th level, Harbinger should be awarded 168gp, 1/5th of 840gp (the cost of a 4th level item).
As noted, you may award parcels when appropriate for your adventure; for example, you might save several parcels for the end of the adventure. If a player has not received a reward that they should have received for a level by the time they level up, the DM should indicate what parcel the player will be getting when next treasure is distributed. If a DM should abandon the game, it is part of the judge's duty to ensure these 'IOU' parcels are properly distributed to players. If a player abandons the game (i.e., leaves it without notifying the DM or judge), any outstanding 'IOU' parcels are forfeit.
Awarding Player Rewards Edit
Player rewards may be rewarded either at the end of the adventure or when other rewards are given. It is important to note when given awards what part of it came from the "adventure" and what part came from any player rewards; this is mainly for bookkeeping purposes. Any treasures earned from player rewards count as the parcel the character would earn at their currently level. For example, if Harbinger earned enough RP level from 4th to 5th and gain a treasure parcel, the parcel he earned from his RP would count as his 5th level parcel. If he had not yet received his fourth level parcel, the DM would owe him that via an 'IOU' parcel as normal.
Concluding the Adventure Edit
After the adventure is completed, you will give the final awards for experience and treasures, and resolve how the PCs leave the adventure if it is site based. If there is an option for a continued adventure, it is important to plan for some players to be able to leave and for new members to join a group, because this is the nature of the forum. In addition, you or a PC should update the adventure list with the final results of the adventure, the final player awards, and any DM awards earned. Writing a summary of the adventure (including important NPCs, locations, and so on) is also requested.
If you must terminate the adventure earlier or cannot continue running it for unforeseen reasons, contact your judge as soon as possible. This will allow the judge to coordinated the continuation or termination of the adventure smoothly and ensures you earn any accrued DM rewards. Real life happens, but we greatly appreciate your help in keeping LEB running smoothly.
DM Rewards Edit
- Main article: LEB:Rewards#DMs
DMs earn rewards for their vital efforts in keeping LEB running; these rewards may be used to benefit your other PCs as a thanks for your efforts. For details, see DM Rewards.
World Building Edit
The setting of LEB—its geography, backstory, NPCs, regions, and so forth—is described elsewhere on the wiki and in the material provided by the Eberron Player's Guide and the Eberron Campaign Guide. As a living persistent world, however, the setting is designed to grow and change over time. DMs take a very active role in world building: You create new areas, dungeons, organizations, towns, NPCs, and so forth related to the adventures that they run. Since there are many adventures in LEB, and not everyone will read them all, setting elements that you create may be forgotten if no one takes the time to transcribe them into the wiki—we prefer that you or one of your players make these changes; also add links to the appropriate sections of the Setting Guide. Judges will want to see an outline for this kind of content in the adventure proposal, and may request changes to help it fit with the existing world better. Major changes to the setting may benefit from a full, formal proposal.
Fixing Problems Edit
If you have any problems, the first people to go to are your players. Explain the issue and try to work something out. If an agreed upon solution cannot be found there, you can speak to the judge overseeing the adventure. Judge decisions are final.
Helping Out Living Eberron Edit
Players who DM for a while (and other, very active players) wonder how they can contribute to Living Eberron. Besides continuing to play and run games, the chief way to contribute are:
- Help maintain the Wiki. Flush out setting details, record successful adventures, clean up grammar and spelling mistakes. All of this is greatly appreciated.
- Create new setting or mechanical material. Create proposals to help flush out our living Eberron setting or to propose interesting game elements such as paragon paths or feats.
- Assist with running LEB. The easiest way to do this is to become a character approver; look over characters requesting approval, validate the character, mark up issues or acceptance on the character sheet, and email the character and the judges. Players who consistently show dedication to LEB may also be invited to become a judge.
Where to Go from Here? Edit
Now that you have your adventure approved, visit the tavern thread to begin recruiting your party. We appreciate your dedication to LEB!