Just curious on a Sunday afternoon: Why do those of you who DM games do so? It’s a bunch of work (well, it is for those of you who don’t just scribble something on the back of an envelope), you don’t get to play a character, you sometimes wind up in a trainwreck … so, why do you DM?
I think that to create something that other players will enjoy… is fantastic!!. To have the opportunity to select music, cities, monsters, challenges, situations, riddles… it is amazing. It is like writing a living story!.. but a story that is being written by itself… and only you have the big picture; I like to wait what are my players going to do!!.. to see how they change history.
On the other hand, in fact, you role so many characters… I think is nice. You have to change your entire personality when they meet a bartender, or the captain of the city guard, or the “evil” necromancer… so, it is quite fun to enter into the new role of so many NPC. In addition, you have to also create important NPC… it is giving backgrounds… it is like playing characters inside your mind.
Last, but not least, you also get to know the players in different ways… a DM always is able to see everything from a different perspective… I think, in general, is nice.
Those are the main reasons why I like to direct games.
I have always loved telling stories. I a no good at writing, sadly, but through DMing, I can invent and share stories with my friend.
I mean, I like the tactical part of the game, and it can be fun to design an encounter with cool tactical elements, or imagining how the smartest creature make use of their surrounding (put the archers on top of the hill behind covers, dig a trap on the path that climbs toward them…). But, mostly, it is about stories.
I also enjoy the intellectual puzzle of fitting these stories into the pre-existing canevas of the established setting and of my players’ backstories…
I like coming up with NPCs and giving them past and motivations, although it is often lost on my players:
“Can we kill and loot him?”
“What? No! He is a city guard!”
“Can we provoke him to kill in self-defense and then loot him?”
sight* -"I ask him if he knows where to find monsters… to kill and loot them…
And not a shit was given about the guard’s story as a shy and nerdy guy that hangs in the tavern because of his secret crush on the waitress…
Also, something I discovered a while ago, I love designing treasure. Finding, or designing myself, just the right items for their PC, or just a cool object they will enjoy. Putting them in the adventure and “giving” them to my players… File like nerdy Santa.
I really like DMing.
Plus it comes on top from most of the perks one get’s from playing, after all, I do get to spend time with some friendly nerdy people, roll the bones and eat candies while quoting “Holy Grail”.
I love being the DM.
I like to invent a tons of memorable situations, characters to “love to hate” or “fall in love” with, with unique backgroundstories, epic settings with histories, and entire cults …
but creating interactive stories together with other people is even better.
Playercharacters can push a story in directions, i would never dreamt of, if i would have written a novel just on my own.
In fiction i like surprises a lot,
and there are tons of surprises with a group of adventurers tearing through your story.
I love forcing playercharacters to choose fast & often, and then confronting them with the result of their choices for the rest of the campaign. Therefore creating a morphic and dynamic setting - together.
Additionally i can relive the experience of my creation process, when I see the reaction of my fellow players. This adds to the satisfaction-level of my couriosity, how players would react in such a situation.