Matt Mercer's advice for critters on becoming D&D players and DM’s - Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount

  • Published: 13 January 2020
  • Matt Mercer gives his advice for fans of Critical Role who want to play in or run their own D&D campaigns using the Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount.

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Comments • 154

  • D&D Beyond
    D&D Beyond   1 weeks back

    Did Critical Role introduce you to Dungeons and Dragons? Will you be playing a campaign using the Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount?

    Pre-order today from D&D Beyond to receive exclusive bonus content!

    • satansbarman
      satansbarman  1 weeks back

      Heroes of the Vale was my introduction (other than D&D video games like Baldur's Gate and Planescape: Torment), Todd and the Heroes are all amazing 😁 now my only problem is finding a group to play with or DM for (I've been working on a one-shot set in Sigil with the possibility of turning into a campaign if it goes well)

    • Prana Khan
      Prana Khan  1 weeks back

      I've already started a Ghosts of Saltmarsh campaign set along the Menagerie Coast. Digging for info. wherever I can find it, and adding my own creative vision to fill in the gaps. This book is one I have been looking forward to for some time.

    • Dylan Gerig
      Dylan Gerig  1 weeks back

      I've been planning on running a campaign in Wildemount for the past year anyways, so this guide is going to be a boon for me

    • Chris Shepard
      Chris Shepard  1 weeks back

      It didn't get me into D&D/Gaming, been there since 81 but it did make me want to be a better Gamemaster.

    • D&D Beyond
      D&D Beyond   1 weeks back

      @WiredKamikaze The pre-order bonuses are 6 backdrops and 6 themes that will unlock immediately with your pre-order!

  • Isaac Hudson
    Isaac Hudson  9 hours back

    can we talk about how shiny todd's head is?

    • TigerKirby215
      TigerKirby215  2 days back

      It's so humbling to see Matt excited to share his world as well as his love for D&D.

      • Monto Morton
        Monto Morton  5 days back

        Great video but I wanted to know more from this interview.

        • Strokirch
          Strokirch  6 days back

          Imagine running a game paralell to CR as the crew of the Ball Eater! xD

          • Khopesh86
            Khopesh86  6 days back

            I'm curious if Caleb's unique spells are going to be added as well.

            • Green Inferno
              Green Inferno  6 days back

              Khopesh86 pretty sure they are just redline or official spells

          • Rivers RPG Channel
            Rivers RPG Channel  7 days back

            Sounds interesting

            • BubonicCraig
              BubonicCraig  1 weeks back

              When Matt was talking about people using his world he got so happy and emotional! That was a really wholesome moment.

              • Steven Prather
                Steven Prather  1 weeks back

                Critical Role got me to start playing Pathfinder 2e.

                • CLARK is/a/FallOut/fan
                  CLARK is/a/FallOut/fan  1 weeks back

                  Congrats Matt!

                  • Ash Rowland
                    Ash Rowland  1 weeks back

                    How can people not like this guy?

                    • a person
                      a person  1 weeks back

                      if i were to run a game in wildemount it would be centered around darktow. the pirate arc is still my favorite part of campaign two and i feel like there's so much to explore around and offshore from the menagerie coast that the critical role campaign won't delve into because it isn't involved in the war.

                      • Aaron Lew
                        Aaron Lew  1 weeks back

                        I am a Critter long before I even tried or done anything with D&D.
                        1+ year in and I am now in a campaign with an amazing DM and party of a few weeks.
                        The only Lawful Good PC among mostly Chaotic party members is costing my character his sanity.

                        And as a Ranger with Speak with Animals, he will rant to random animals to get things off his chest. XD

                        • Slightly Smaug
                          Slightly Smaug  1 weeks back

                          Watching Matt has helped me with my DMing chops. Watching him week after week and then finding channels on youtube has opened me up to a very different style of DMing that I would not have done 10+ years ago. I'm constantly learning new things as a DM.

                          • FidosWideWorld
                            FidosWideWorld  1 weeks back

                            From the entirety of this interview, I personally think that the most important advice he gave for up and coming Dungeon Masters, is that HIS way of being a DM isn't necessarily THE way of doing it, that you doing your own thing, experimenting on your own and creating something that belongs to you, is far better than trying to imitate him. He's great, and he's an amazing narrator, but that's because he's got his own style, being yourself and doing your own thing will in the long run fetch both you and your players the best results, and it'll be an exhilarating and interesting journey for you as a DM yourself. Everyone sucks in the beginning, makes silly mistakes because they get flustered or stressed due to not knowing the rules back to back, but you'll learn, give it your best, I know you can do it, and so can Matt, inspiration is fine, but create your own style, as my former martial arts master once said: "Never aim to be as good as your teacher, aim to surpass him"

                            • JLlo64
                              JLlo64  1 weeks back

                              According to other people, I’m fairly good at impressions. I can’t wait to try and bring characters from the show into my campaign to surprise my players. Specifically Pumat Sol

                              • Joseph Boyle
                                Joseph Boyle  1 weeks back

                                0:13 i need one of those....

                                • Wristan
                                  Wristan  1 weeks back

                                  I got into D&D before Critical Role and to be honest it is a very intimidating game. Every time I sat down and played I felt lost at what to do. I tried it on both fronts, DMing much later in my life and it fell apart. I ran a module for Pathfinder and it was a mess, but a fun mess. My friends seem to have fun with it and I felt I could continue to DM. How wrong I was. Game after game, I tried, but I couldn't grasp even a fraction of that first time I DMed.

                                  I couldn't figure out what was happening for the longest time, but that last game I attempted to run finally made me realize it wasn't all my fault. I tried running a Sci-Fi setting in Starfinder and found that one of my friends was personally the cause of each and every game falling apart. It wasn't so blatant in those other games, but in this game it showed me full on that their heart wasn't in it. I talked to them and life issues had seeped into the games we played.

                                  He let me know that it's been like this for a while and his all wasn't in it for the longest time, not since that first time. I was of course upset, all this time I put so much effort into each game and thought I personally failed the players at our table and kept doubling down every session afterward in hope to bring some excitement to the table. I talked to the other people at the table and none of them wanted to do much rping, they just weren't that type. Everyone was to afraid of saying another, because they didn't want to disappoint me. It's not about me, it's about us.

                                  If they had just let me know that they didn't want to play or they wanted a more hack and slash type game I would've been happy to accommodate. The group disbanded shortly after. The player with the life issues had severe depression and decide to escape by working non-stop so as not to have to think about these issue. The other two found different groups to join and sadly I wasn't able to join or form a new group. I have my own issue and that's I'm very timid when trying to talk to new people, either online or IRL. I tried for a few years after the group split, but I kept shying away.

                                  It took me most of 20+ years to make the 3 friend I did have and it was tough to do that. The fact I was still in school meant I had to sort of interact with people daily, but now, now it's just so easy to shut one self away and not interact with people at all. I'm currently a 24/7 caregiver for a family member and so have been stuck inside as much as them. My social skills which were already bad are pretty much non-existent these days. Having food deliveries and things like Amazon make it so everything can come to you. CR is what I wish I could have, but with my current life situations is impossible.

                                  By time I get another shot at life I'll probably be in my 50's and a gibbering mess of a person. If my crippling over-weight body doesn't do me in at that point I'll probably die to something else. Someday's I wish life was more like a video game. I had started a new game by now with the knowledge I currently have and do better in the next run, but life isn't like a game and once you go down a certain path you're almost certainly stuck on that path for life. You may get lucky and find a way off that train-wreak, but not everyone is able to get that second shot.

                                  Mostly to achieve that above you have to have motivation and want to do so, but if you don't have that then it may as well be carved in stone. I've never had a relationship, I got really no one in life to give me such motivation. I'm just living to get to the end, because I'm to much of a coward to see myself out of the world in another other way. CR and the internet is my last bit of enjoyment in the world, if I every lost the means to it, I'd just curl up and wither away.

                                  • Lilith Henry
                                    Lilith Henry  1 weeks back

                                    3:19 this just... makes me smile. This is such a beautiful way to be. "I love this thing, and I love that other people love it." Its a selfless joy that I really appreciate. Matt is an amazing person.

                                    • Maximum DM
                                      Maximum DM  1 weeks back

                                      He’s a treasure I hope he’s not too stressed about all this

                                  • Niko K
                                    Niko K  1 weeks back

                                    When I started dnd I jumped in the deep end without knowing how to swim
                                    In my first session of dnd I was the dm for a group of players that had never played and I used a setting I created myself.
                                    I had watched about 10 eps of cr and the first season of dimension 20.
                                    It was great. Even though we made a lot of rule mistakes and my players destroyed the planed story in the second session we had sooo much fun.

                                    • Quadraxis
                                      Quadraxis  1 weeks back

                                      As many others have pointed out, the Mercer effect is a real thing and as a veteran player and novice DM, I highly recommend each and every player and DM out there, fresh and experienced: do NOT attempt to copy Critical Role or expect your game to be like it. It won't, no matter how experienced you are. As Matt himself has said, find your own play style, your own way of doing things, and run with that. That is what D&D is about. And D&D is, above all else, a game. And games are supposed to be fun.

                                      • Robert Pettigrew
                                        Robert Pettigrew  1 weeks back

                                        So are we just ignoring the first book?

                                        • Aaron Hunter
                                          Aaron Hunter  1 weeks back

                                          I think so, though perhaps some of it will be retread and updated in this one.

                                      • Kyle Louthan
                                        Kyle Louthan  1 weeks back

                                        When is this available? I can not wait for the full lore dump.

                                        • Elana Kadish
                                          Elana Kadish  1 weeks back

                                          Kyle Louthan available for preorder now, comes out march 17 2020

                                      • Dontez
                                        Dontez  1 weeks back

                                        "A very high standard of play" .. aka ...the Mercer effect... It's very hard to DM as good as Matt... I still don't have my 105yr old Black Powder Merchant down yet...

                                        • Tntfag
                                          Tntfag  1 weeks back

                                          @Ryan Anderson Absolutely, I've personally borrowed from both Matt's(Mercer and Colville) from Webdm and Nerdarchy amongst others, and in the end my DM style is mine and no one mentions any other big DM because of that, because I also feel that once someone sees that you are trying to mimic another DM you will be forever compared to that DM rather than seen for your own skill.

                                        • Ryan Anderson
                                          Ryan Anderson  1 weeks back

                                          I absolutely agree. My first long running game was one that I DMed after only playing once before. My players had no idea what they were doing, same as me. I tried to do some things that Matt does, but I did not try to be Matt. And my players had no idea who he was, so there was no expectation put on me. We were all pretty much brand-new. Just do what you can. Steal, I mean “Borrow” things you like from others and adapt it into your own style. Matt has DMs that he looks up to. One day you might inspire someone else to DM like you do.

                                        • Tntfag
                                          Tntfag  1 weeks back

                                          I think it's very hard to DM as someone else overall. And I believe that it's that mindset which hinders people from actually becoming the great DM's they want to be. Because if thinking that they want to be a great DM as someone else, they often forget where they already are on their own DM journey compared to where they were when they started it.

                                      • BlindedLight09
                                        BlindedLight09  1 weeks back

                                        Critical Role is actually the reason I wanted to give DMing a try about two-three years ago. A lot of my DMing style is influenced by Matt because I love the way he does it so much. I try to not emulate him and I'm still learning a lot with every session but I can safely thank CR for me the courage to give it a shot.

                                        • Nitewulf
                                          Nitewulf  1 weeks back

                                          I'm a writer professionally and come from the world of homebrew written rpgs where I'm primarily the GM and have been for over 10 years. I discovered Critical Role 7 months ago (thank you Twitch front page) and lemme say, the past 7 months have completely changed (for the better) my writing and storytelling style and ability. That is primarily thanks to Matt, who has been showing me every week that my love of deep lore and cinematic detail is not only okay, but appreciated and interesting. I now look forward to the day I can DM an official Exandrian campaign, and eventually my own homebrewed world that has been stewing in my head for years. Thank you, Matt

                                          • Jacob Abrahamia
                                            Jacob Abrahamia  1 weeks back

                                            Do people believe the book will have many spoilers to critical role like how the Tal’Dorei Campaign Setting Spoiler the chroma Conclave?

                                            • Jacob Abrahamia
                                              Jacob Abrahamia  1 weeks back

                                              Aaron Hunter but do you believe it will have spoilers for events that have already happened as I am very not up to date on campaign 2?

                                            • Aaron Hunter
                                              Aaron Hunter  1 weeks back

                                              Probably around religion and religious dynamics, as well as the extent of Dunamancy and spells that Caleb might get, but not necessarily the motivations and natures of key NPCs. Since all the adventures are introductory, it shouldn't go that deep.

                                          • Betsy
                                            Betsy  1 weeks back

                                            CR did get me into D&D and I thank them for it. I’ve been playing for two years now and I love it!!!!

                                            • Ol’doge Snozfox
                                              Ol’doge Snozfox  1 weeks back

                                              When you realise that Wildemount was hinted at to be an official universe, when Arkan took the hand of vecna to avernus.

                                              • Ol’doge Snozfox
                                                Ol’doge Snozfox  1 weeks back

                                                Yea ,true. Hehe I forget things a lot

                                              • Michael Rose
                                                Michael Rose  1 weeks back

                                                Technically, that was a different continent during the end of the first campaign. Not Wildemount.

                                            • Sarah M
                                              Sarah M  1 weeks back


                                              • Zethren527
                                                Zethren527  1 weeks back

                                                As someone who was playing long before hearing of this wonderful series, I approve and appreciate this message.

                                                • ian reclusado
                                                  ian reclusado  1 weeks back

                                                  I have purchased the core three books, a module, and have lucked across a bunch of old books from a family friend, all thanks to CR and MM. I’m now DMing two campaigns and have already finished a one shot and a shorter three-session campaign. If it wasn’t for critical role, I’d never have felt like I could handle learning all the rules and whatnot. But a few years of four plus hour episodes has made it all so (relatively) easy to put into play. I’m very grateful to Matt Mercer for all his work, his openness, and the inspiration he has brought me.

                                                  • Dylan Gerig
                                                    Dylan Gerig  1 weeks back

                                                    Low key, I've been planning on running a campaign in Exandria, Wildemount specifically, for the past year now

                                                    • s409921 6
                                                      s409921 6  1 weeks back

                                                      4:21 Todd going full "midday TV salesman voice" literally gave me a heart attack.

                                                      • bse523
                                                        bse523  1 weeks back

                                                        CR got me back into TTRPGs and I thank you Matt for giving me the inspiration to try to DM. For those wondering what it's like for the first time, it can be intimidating. Realize that you will make mistakes, it's part of being human. But if you use this book or the Tal'Dorei campaign guide (like I did) since you love and know there world you're playing in, it'll inspire you to at least try and DM. Don't be afraid of it! It's time consuming and challenging but rewarding at the same time!

                                                        • Marissa
                                                          Marissa  1 weeks back

                                                          I you liked this video LIKE this video. Get CR and D&D on youtube's homepage, c'mon folks

                                                          • MagickP00dle
                                                            MagickP00dle  1 weeks back

                                                            Is The Chair in this book?

                                                            • Cody Mckindsey
                                                              Cody Mckindsey  5 days back

                                                              We still need answers hopefully this book has those answers

                                                          • Roman Penna
                                                            Roman Penna  1 weeks back

                                                            Super excited for this. Thank you Matt for everything you do, and for being incredibly humble. :)

                                                            • Metal Steve
                                                              Metal Steve  1 weeks back

                                                              all I need to know is this: Is Pumat Sols in the book?

                                                              • Ryen
                                                                Ryen  1 weeks back

                                                                I. Would. LOVE. That. So Much

                                                              • Landis963
                                                                Landis963  1 weeks back

                                                                If Zadash is given an entry, the Invulnerable Vagrant will be in there, and therefore Pumat will be there. All of the Pumat will be there.

                                                            • Cristian Irribarra
                                                              Cristian Irribarra  1 weeks back

                                                              I'm an astrophyisicist and this fills my non existent soul to the top

                                                              • hollowbag oogiesboy
                                                                hollowbag oogiesboy  1 weeks back

                                                                So the setting is campaign 2?

                                                                • Optimistic Writer
                                                                  Optimistic Writer  1 weeks back

                                                                  Oh snap, that's some really good pointers for beginners.

                                                                  • ryan rhino
                                                                    ryan rhino  1 weeks back

                                                                    Shut up& take my money already. Also when it coming out

                                                                    • Lobstie
                                                                      Lobstie  1 weeks back

                                                                      far as I know 17th of march

                                                                  • Kar Z
                                                                    Kar Z  1 weeks back

                                                                    Just remember folks, you and your players/dms don't have to be the second critical role, it's alright if you don't describe things like Matt does or are shy to roleplay, you don't need to be actors to play D&D!

                                                                    • Nick Williams
                                                                      Nick Williams  1 weeks back

                                                                      @Marvin Hubregtse I dunno man. If someone's "fun" involves disrupting other people's fun, I think it's fair to use that phrase seriously.

                                                                    • Marvin Hubregtse
                                                                      Marvin Hubregtse  1 weeks back

                                                                      your fun is wrong.
                                                                      should only be used as a joke and not taken serius ever :)

                                                                    • Nick Williams
                                                                      Nick Williams  1 weeks back

                                                                      A major thing to remember is that speaking in character is only _one_ way to roleplay. Obviously if everyone at the table is a professional voice actor that's probably the way people are going to choose, but first-person and third-person are completely valid ways to go as well.

                                                                  • ShmilS
                                                                    ShmilS  1 weeks back

                                                                    "...maybe some other people will start streaming."
                                                                    That's awesome, we'll get the Critical Role Expanded Universe.

                                                                    • ShmilS
                                                                      ShmilS  1 weeks back

                                                                      @Lilith Henry That would be hilariously amazing XD

                                                                    • Lilith Henry
                                                                      Lilith Henry  1 weeks back

                                                                      Cue the Gentleman showing up in other streams like "I'd like to talk to you about the R.O.L.E. Initiative..."

                                                                    • Hell Bent
                                                                      Hell Bent  1 weeks back

                                                                      @ShmilS They already have an animated series coming up! ;D

                                                                    • ShmilS
                                                                      ShmilS  1 weeks back

                                                                      @Hell Bent I expect feature films XD

                                                                    • Hell Bent
                                                                      Hell Bent  1 weeks back

                                                                      If it is canon, I expect novels!

                                                                  • GorillaGluu
                                                                    GorillaGluu  1 weeks back

                                                                    Im hooked on DnD thanks to Critical Role, watching through the first campaign, episode 44, i never want it to end

                                                                    • Amber Stevens
                                                                      Amber Stevens  1 weeks back

                                                                      My husband and I are in the 1st one too (around episode 70 I think). We only get to watch it for about 30-40 minutes at a time after the kiddos go to bed. It's what introduced me to dnd and now my husband dms a couple campaigns and I dmed a few one shots to see if I like dming.

                                                                    • Jacob Valentine
                                                                      Jacob Valentine  1 weeks back

                                                                      @Elvin Tan Hope you guy's enjoy! You'll be caught up before you know it though so be sure to take your time, both campaigns are really unique from each other so it's nice to absorb both stories.

                                                                    • Elvin Tan
                                                                      Elvin Tan  1 weeks back

                                                                      Oh wow. I'm at the exact same episode, then I saw a link to this. HIGH FIVE CRITTER

                                                                  • ULTIMATE G SQUAD
                                                                    ULTIMATE G SQUAD  1 weeks back

                                                                    I came to this video to learn how to get my cat to play D&D

                                                                    • tomisabum
                                                                      tomisabum  1 weeks back

                                                                      You can't just casually introduce a giant fantasy-esque exosuit like that, guys. I'm weak, weak to that.