D&D Rules School - Learning the Basics (5th edition)

Sharing buttons:

hi everyone you're watching WASD 20 my

name is Nate today's video is intended

for newcomers to D&D to give you a

little more comfort with the game and to

help you understand what the heck this

game is and how it works for this one

I'm assuming that you have a character

sheet that maybe you've seen some of my

character creation videos and our goal

here is really to understand now that

you have a character sheet now that

maybe you've created a character how do

all these numbers and words work and

actual practice in the game what do they

mean and how do we apply them to the

game so to do that we're going to

actually be playing a sample session of

Dungeons & Dragons I will be both the

player and the DM and we'll give it a

shot here should be kind of fun if you

don't have a character sheet I recommend

you check out my website WASD 20 net on

the resources tab there and I'll put a

link to this in the description I'll

have a section there with some pre

generated characters including the one

that I'm using today and you can

download those check them out and follow

along with me what I'm doing or if

you're feeling adventurous you could try

to create your own character sheet I

also have a whole series of videos

dedicated to that now I just want to say

that this video is totally optional

let's say that you've been invited to

play Dungeons and Dragons for the first

time and you're wanting to learn all the

rules before you show up to actually

play well good luck with that the rules

are pretty dense there's a lot to learn

about the game and I'm I would never

attempt to do something like that in

this video it would be hours long if

you've been invited to play in a game

one of the best things you can do is

just show up with an open mind if you

have a good dungeon master and a good

group they're gonna welcome you and

teach you the rules on the fly as you go

that's how I learned but that said if

you want to learn how some of the basics

of the game work in practice this video

is for you

so keep watching with that out of the

way let's get down to the game

here we have our battle mat you don't

always play D&D with a map like this but

some people prefer to if you're not

playing with a map you're just kind of

imagining things and we call that the

theater of the mind but for our sake

today just to have a visual we playing

with a map and we'll be playing with

minis too

first I'd like to just say a word about

the Dungeon Master the DM in dungeons a

dragon is the lead storyteller the rest

of the players should also be a part of

the storytelling and depending on the DM

it could be a very big part of the

storytelling but the DM is the lead

storyteller in general the DM is also

the adjudicator of rules they make the

calls on what goes and what does not and

sometimes they can choose to bend the

rules a little bit for the sake of the

game they don't normally play a

character but they do play multiple non

player characters so they're not going

to be a party member in general but they

do get to play lots of characters the DM

also describes scenes creates obstacles

and adventures for the players all the

while trying to adapt to player actions

so usually you begin a session of D&D

with a Dungeon Master setting the scene

in this case when I'm speaking as the DM

I'm going to do my best to have the read

d20 out here and when I'm describing the

actions of the player and speaking in my

players voice I'll have the purple d20

out here now today I'll be playing as

aired on cero shent who is a wood elf

fighter he happens to be a character I

play in the provokers campaign and he's

level 3 usually you'll be starting at

level 1 but I just happened to have this

level 3 character sheet handy so I

figured I'd use this and it'll give us a

few more abilities to play around with -

during the session so we generally start

with our dungeon master setting the

scene with a little exposition a little

narration if you will so now the dungeon

master is going to set the scene you are

aired on cero shent

a young wood elf soldier who has been

tasked with scouting the position of a

fierce orc vagabond known as he lost the


rumor has it he has moved into the area

and everyone knows he is no good the

village elders have tasked you with

finding his location so that a raiding

party might be sent to root him out all

right now air Don is a bit of a brash

soldier shoot the arrow now and ask

questions later type of guy so I have a

feeling he's not going to be so into the

task of scouting but he's going to try

to take out a loss himself

if I'm playing in character that's what

I'll probably do now as the player one

of the first things you need to know

about D&D is you just narrate your

action so I am going to say I walk down

the path to the river to see if I see

any footprints

now the DM might say you see footprints

scattered about in the mud and they're

going in many directions okay well I

think I want to move a little closer

here and see if I see anything on or

across the river anyone across the other

side perhaps you don't see anyone but

you do see a fishing line out in the

middle of the river looks like it's

coming from your side of the river okay

well I think I want to try to sneak

along the the back here and see if I can

see anyone from further back so it's not

to alert them now the DM might decide

that I need to be stealthy but in this

case the sound of the river is loud

enough where I can do it without making

a stealth check so I sneak along here

and the DM says on a rock you see with

his back to you a man he's wearing

leather and he is holding a fishing pole

hmm a man well I have a feeling he might

be able to give me some good information

so I'm just gonna knock an arrow just in

case pull out my short bow nock and

arrow and I'm gonna call out to him you

there now what I just did is I spoke in

my character's voice rather than just

saying I call out to him I said I call

out to him and then I actually did call

out to him in character voice now your

character might actually have the same

voice as you you don't have to put on a

funny accent some people enjoy that some

people don't but the point is you're

speaking in the first person kind of

well you're speaking from a first-person

perspective you were immersed and so

that's that's a style I prefer but

everyone has different styles some

people might just say I call out to him

to try to get his attention

anyway I call out to him you there and

the DM says he turns around looking

quite startled and he says what was that

who goes there

I say

have you seen anyone traveling around

here any any signs of well uh no work a

narc well hmm no no I can't say I have

I'm just here minding my own business

you know trying to catch some fish

so as the player I have a feeling this

guy might not be telling me the truth I

feel like he might not be totally honest

with me so I'm gonna try to figure out

is this can I tell if he's nervous as

he's shifting and can I tell if he's

telling me the truth now the DM is going

to say make an insight check alright so

we have our very first skill check this

is an essential part of D&D our skills

are all listed on the character sheet

right here and in air Don's case we find

that insight has a +2 bonus for all

skill checks and this is true of most

d20 games not just D&D you're going to

be rolling a d20 and then adding the

appropriate modifier for insight which

is how I would tell if he is telling the

truth or not I'm going to roll my D 20

and add 2 so here we go alright I have

my assistant here five-year-old Caleb

and he rolled a 17 for me excellent work

Caleb so 17 plus 2 is 19 so the DM is

gonna say you can tell that he is not

being very truthful he's shifting he is

twitching and looks very nervous okay so

he's not being totally truthful with me

well err Donegan is kind of a brash guy

I think I'm gonna move up and I'm gonna

try to intimidate him I'm gonna not keep

my arrow nock and I'm gonna move closer

glaring at him raising my bow just

slightly and tell him you had better be

truthful with me I can tell you know

something else make an intimidation

check alright so now I'm going to make

my second skill check intimidation for

aired on you can see I have a plus 1 to

intimidation actually Caleb's gonna roll

for me

alright you rolled a seven which

intimidation plus one that's an eight

and I'm going to say that this guy is

probably not going to be intimidated by


so as the DM I will say he stares you

down and says don't you threaten me elf

I have powerful friends what to do what

to do so he's just staring me down well

I think I'm gonna back off I don't think

I want to provoke a fight with this guy

I'm gonna back off and say all right

well I'm gonna be on my way and you stay

out of my way and he's going to move

move on - keep looking for this orc I

move away but I continue to watch my

back as I move alright so I failed to

intimidate that guy wasn't able to get

any information from him so I'm going to

keep moving and I'm just going to try to

you know kind of sneak around and and

see what I can see you see if I see any

other tracks or anything out of the

ordinary I think I'm going to move this

way stop when you get right here you

hear a sharp twang and you need to make

a dexterity saving throw alright so

saving throw this is my very first

saving throw and they're similar to

skills in some ways they are based on

our abilities ability scores and ability

modifiers just as the skills are they're

more general so in this case I'm going

to be making a dexterity saving throw

and I have a plus two bonus there so

saving throws are things that you know

you'll face that you need to resist in

some way whether it's through the force

of mind and will or through through the

just brute strength or Constitution or

whatever in this case it's it's kind of

quickness and agility so something is is

going to be falling on me

just tell you it's a falling net trap so

I have to make a dexterity saving throw

and I make a five plus two gives me a

seven which is not going to be enough

the DC on this is ten that's the

difficulty so that's not going to be

enough so a net has fallen on me all


I am knocked down and I am going to try

to get to my dagger and try to cut

myself free from this all right so I'm

going to reach for my dagger and see if

I can't hit this thing it says in my

book here that the net has an armor

class of ten so I have to get 10 to hit

this is kind of like combat here I'm

going to be using my dagger and I have a

+4 attack bonus so I'm going to roll my

D 20 and I'm going to add my attack

bonus of 417 plus 4 is 21 I had to get

10 to get this net and so that that is a

hit my damage for my dagger is 1 D for

which I have here plus 2 so here we go

all right I got a 2 plus 2 is 4 and that

is not quite enough so I'm not able to

cut a big enough gash in this with my

dagger I think I'm going to try to just

throw this thing off it's probably

weighted down in some way I'm just going

to try a strength check to throw it off

so in this case this is just a

straight-up strength check here it's not

really a saving throw so much and so I

have a plus 2 to strength and I need to

get a 10 in order to throw this thing

off I got it - all right so that's not

working so well I'm stuck in this net

I'm going to give it a shot with my

dagger again all right 16 plus 4 is 20

so I definitely am able to hit and now

I'll roll one D 4 plus 2 damage 3 plus 2

is 5 you cut a gash that is big enough

in the net slashing it with your dagger

in order for you to be freed from its


all right so I'm out of the net there a

bit of a struggle I think now I'm going

to actually try to climb this tree that

trap is made to be suspicious and I'm

going to try to climb the tree and see

what I can see see if I see anything out

of the ordinary in this area the DM

might decide that I need to make a check

in order to climb the tree but in the

interest of time here I'm just going to

say I'm able to climb the tree so what

do I see from up here I'm looking for

anything out of the ordinary straight

ahead you see a cave opening and you see

light flickering from within the cave it

has become dark outside but you can see

light clearly flickering from within the


oh I'm sorry to leave you on a

cliffhanger there what could be in that

cave hmm

well so far in this one we've covered

the role of the DM we've covered how to

narrate action how to make a skill check

how to make a saving throw and the next

one we're going to get into some real

combat against something that hits back

something that is not made of rope and

does not simply fall from a tree so that

should be fun until then make sure you

give this one a thumbs up if you enjoyed

it leave me a comment below let me know

what you think and everybody take care

until next time happy gaming