Improv for Dungeon Masters
Teacher: Adam Hembree
Time: 3 hours (with a short break)
Table-top roleplaying games have never been more popular than they are now, and
none more so than Dungeons and Dragons. No matter what system you and your friends
use to build other worlds and play in them together if you are running the game (bless
you for that), then you are going to find yourself on the spot. You’ll need to create that
bartender, that baroness, or that blood-soaked cultist with no prior warning, no matter
how much you plan.
Improv for Dungeon Masters will give you tools to make up engaging new characters on
the fly. Participants will have a safe and judgment-free place to try out simple
improvisation techniques that have been tailored to make your role-playing less
stressful and more fun. You will practice finding realistic character desires and then
using them to react honestly to whatever your players bring to the table. The goal is to
help you to fill your world with living, feeling creatures that are both recognisable and
surprising to your players. That world may be a fantasy, but compelling characters can
make it real.
You do not need to be an experienced Game Master or an experienced improvisor to
attend. While the workshop will be held on Zoom, skills practiced will be applicable to
both online and in-person gameplay.
Adam Hembree is a Melbourne-based performer and a Ph.D. candidate in English and
Theatre Studies. He has performed with Impro Melbourne and The Improv Conspiracy,
and in 2015 he co-founded Soothplayers, presenters of Completely Improvised
Shakespeare and Completely Improvised Potter. When the theatres shut in 2020, Adam
spent a locked-down year running two weekly D&D campaigns with fellow castmates,
and he will happily nerd out about tabletop games, improvisation, genre fiction, and
Shakespeare with anyone who’s keen.
This course will be taught via the online platform Zoom and requires no prior improvisation experience.