GM Mentoring Project

Mar 13, 2018 8:02 pm
@Keleth often says this and I completely agree: what sets GP apart from other PbP sites is the community.

One of the best things I've seen happen on this site is people volunteering to run with the specific intent to teach a system to new players.

I consider myself somewhat of a veteran player. I've been playing D&D for more than 30 years (and numerous other systems for several years thanks in part to Gamers' Plane) but never have I DM'd.

Here's an idea I've been mulling over since November: What if we set up some games for newbie GM's? I was considering setting this up the same way @Naatkinson has set up D&D 5e Boot Camp, where it's one "game" but it's really set up as a bunch of separate groups. Each group would be an adventure being run by a newbie DM, possibly with one or several veterans as co-GM's.

Currently I have this setup with the working title "First Foray" through which I've just started running my very first D&D game, mentored by @Naatkinson, @CancerMan, @HypCo, @DMJ, and @Lenpelletier and I must say I am already learning A LOT! I think it would be a good idea to eventually set the forums to Public so people who would like to "watch and learn" without necessarily participating can subscribe to it if they wish.

1. Is anyone interested in signing up as either a learner GM or as a mentor?
2. My idea is to have this wide open in terms of game system (one "learner" could be learning to DM D&D 5e, another learner could be practicing to GM Numenera or what have you). Do you think that's a good idea?

I'm open to any and all suggestions!
UPDATE:
Based on everyone's input it looks like the best way to go is to set up your own games, using this thread as a place for Mentors and Learners to come together.
UPDATE:
The GM Mentoring Project now has its own Discord channel on the GamersPlane server! Hope to see you there!
I've set up these lists which I'll try to keep up-to-date:
[ +- ] Mentor GMs accepting Learner GMs
[ +- ] Learners seeking Mentors
[ +- ] Willing Test Subjects/Guinea Pigs/Crash Test Dummies
[ +- ] Ongoing GM Mentoring Games
[ +- ] Helpful Resources for GMs Old & New
Last edited April 15, 2020 3:09 pm
Mar 13, 2018 8:09 pm
I love this idea Jabes. It has the added benefit of letting some of those "always a DM, never a player" folks get a chance to play.

I would love to participate in pretty much any capacity. For 5e and Pathfinder, I'd be able to do more of the mentoring kind of feel. Other systems I'd definitely be a learner in.

The one difficult part with having it all in one game area would be the submitting character sheets and such could end up having some hefty bloat once you get beyond a game or two in the same area. If one person was involved in multiple, keeping it straight which person to select when could get cumbersome.
Mar 13, 2018 8:21 pm
Thanks for the input, @Dramasailor! Yeah I imagine managing such a beast would be tough. I'd love to hear how @DM_Apexwolf and the other GM's at Venatus: West Marches are handling it!
Mar 13, 2018 8:28 pm
Sounds interesting. If people wanted to try to learn Dungeon World/Masks/Urban Shadows/Savage Worlds (pick your setting)/GeneSys/Cypher I'd be inclined down those roads to teach/train.
Mar 13, 2018 8:30 pm
Great idea Jabes. DMing is the best, and more people should try it. Giving peeps the opportunity to do it with mentorship is awesome.

I am not sure how well it all would work in a single "game" on GP, but if you want to expand to include an additional system, I'd be willing to help mentor someone.
Mar 13, 2018 8:42 pm
I can tell from experience that having three groups in my Boot Camp game has made it somewhat difficult to use the bottom red bar to manage characters well, which I ALWAYS use as a GM. Honestly, it would probably be best to have them be separate (public) games, just to keep things more manageable.

Others may have different thoughts on the subject, but that's my two cents based on the way I run games and navigate the site.
Mar 13, 2018 8:43 pm
Gosh, I'd really like to Mentor for anyone interested in learning how to run FFGs Star Wars system (Edge of the Empire, Age of Rebellion, Force &a Destiny), but don't know that I can commit the time.

Not clear on exactly how this is envisioned to work though... is it just that the Mentor kind of "shadows" the Student? And sends them PMs or in-game Notes, or something? Or is it in effect just a bunch of GMs playing in a Students game, with a bunch of back-and-forth about the system mechanics/dynamics, and game theory, etc.?

How exactly are you and your Mentors implementing this, Jabes?
Mar 13, 2018 8:57 pm
For now, it works as the latter. Jabes is tasked with setting up the world and something for the players to do, and the players stand ready to answer questions or provide insight whenever needed. It's also more than just being able to run the game, as we involve the PbP aspect: organizing forums, managing character information, figuring out effective methods of tracking posts, etc.

Most of the experience is gained by just running the game and seeing what works and what doesn't, and having a pool of trustworthy players that will offer honest critique without being patronizing or condescending.
Mar 13, 2018 9:23 pm
this indeed piques my interest.
Mar 13, 2018 9:25 pm
You people are amazing.

That's all, keep doing what you're doing, which is being amazing.
Mar 13, 2018 9:59 pm
Great idea, Jabes!
Mar 13, 2018 11:51 pm
Wonderful idea!

I'm happy to participate as a player, though I'm far from expert. I'm pretty maxed on my GMing duties at present, though I do have lots to learn.

To that end, for anyone who is one of my games and wants to give constructive feedback, I always welcome it!
Mar 14, 2018 1:20 am
I would also love constructive feedback in my games! I never know if I am doing it well.
Mar 14, 2018 1:32 am
Maybe a way to kick this chicken to the next bingo is to:
- establish a few best practices
- open up a "Looking For Mentor" list.
Mar 14, 2018 2:03 am
I want to learn how to GM...
Mar 14, 2018 2:38 am
I'd definitely be willing to be a part of this. Maybe we should make a pool of games we could be willing to mentor for?
Mar 14, 2018 4:11 am
This is fantastic. Being a new GM is always hard. Our hobby kind of expects us to just jump into the deep end of the pool and start to swim! I've seen several people in my home group and online do that and have an experience where their head goes under water and they swear GMing off. Having a veteran nearby to pull them up when that happens is a fantastic idea.

I volunteer for tribute! I like to think I'm a good GM. I've had some fantastic successes with games (and some turds, let's be honest) and I'd love to help someone out who's looking for help. Also, I plan to learn a TON from mentoring.
Mar 14, 2018 4:51 am
I'd also totally be down to help new DMs/GMs/STs learn dem some rules real gud. Here's a quick list of systems I feel comfortable enough teaching, though many of them are somewhat dated:

* Cyberpunk 2020/Mekton Zeta
* Twilight 2000
* Tales from the Floating Vagabond
* Cypher System (and its subsidiaries)
* Powered by the Apocalypse (and its various subsidiaries, such as Dungeon World, Monsterhearts, Masks, et cetera)
* Legend of the Five Rings & 7th Sea
* Mutants & Masterminds 2e
* Risus
* Pathfinder (Starfinder, Wayfinder, etc)
* D&D (1st through 5th Edition... I'm so old q_q)
* Shadow of the Demon Lord
* World of Darkness (+ Vampire, Changeling, & Hunter)
* Dust's Final Fantasy d6
* A Wanderer's Romance
* OpenD6 (+ MiniSix & WEG's D6 Systems, by extension)
* Top Secret: SI
* Straight to VHS
* Feng Shui 2e
* Warrior, Rogue, Mage
* Trollish Delver Studios' Minimalist RPGs (In Darkest Warrens, Wired Neon Cities, et cetera)
* The Window System

As an aside to future Game Masters: remember that everyone has their own distinct manner of "Game Mastering," whatever that title might actually be. I would also want to preface that for many games the rules are merely guidelines, and that finding your "voice" as the narrator or Storyteller or whathaveyou is something that comes with time and passion. And most importantly, remember the Golden Rule: the players should be having fun, and you should be having fun because they're having fun :)
Mar 14, 2018 5:03 am
Welp, it's time for the rest of us to pack it in. SaucyWaffle has it all covered! XD

Making a list is a great idea. I'll have to do that, as well, in the near future.
Mar 14, 2018 1:20 pm
Shark_Bone says:
Welp, it's time for the rest of us to pack it in. SaucyWaffle has it all covered! XD

Making a list is a great idea. I'll have to do that, as well, in the near future.
Just find one he's not doing. ;)

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