Adventurer and Tabletop Etiquette

Or How to Get Invited Back

All good relationships are built upon respect. In order to have a good relationship with the IAtD society and your fellow Adventurers, respect is of the utmost importance. What follows is a broad outline for Proper Etiquette and Respectfulness Becoming of an Adventurer and General Purveyor of Epic Awesomeness. Follow these guidelines and all will be well!


  1. Be punctual.
    1. Chronic tardiness is disrespectful to all other members involved.
    2. RSVP appropriately.
      • Do not RSVP to private events you have not been approved for.
      • Do not show up to a private event without an RSVP.
  2. Be prepared.
    1. Have your character sheet as updated and ready as possible prior to sessions, unless your GM specifically states otherwise.
    2. Keep up with emails and communications from your GM.
    3. Keep up with your character’s own inventory and XP.
    4. Keep up with your character’s marker (mini) on the map and during play.
    5. Have your own dice and keep up with them.
    6. Keep up with your own character’s abilities and modifiers during play.
  3. Be courteous.
    1. Do not take up large amounts of table space. That is prime real estate!
      • Keep your papers, pencils, dice, supplies, etc., organized.
    2. Limit cell phone use that is not directly related to adventuring.
      • If it’s not important enough to answer at a theater, don’t answer it at the table.
  4. Respect your fellow players
    1. Do not violate other people’s personal space.
      • Unless you are a large group meeting in a sardine can, there is no reason to ever be elbow-to-elbow with another player.
    2. Do not touch or use another person’s dice without permission.
    3. Do not touch or use another person’s miniatures without permission.
    4. Be mindful of other players’ sensibilities.
    5. This is a team game.
      • Not the Grand Adventures of Bob and those other 4 people following him.
      • Be patient during the parts of the adventure that are not your favorite; don’t rush other players through encounters they enjoy simply because you don’t.
    6. Understand the difference between helpfulness and arguing/rules lawyering.
    7. Do not be disruptive; if you have a disagreement, work it out outside the game.
      • Be mature enough to admit if a group is just not a good match for you.
  5. Respect your GM
    1. Much work goes into setting up a campaign (even a prefab) and the general rule of thumb is the GM is the final authority.
    2. Never attempt to look over or go behind the GM’s screen.
    3. Be mindful of your GM’s sensibilities.
    4. Understand the difference between helpfulness and arguing/rules lawyering.
    5. Do not be unnecessarily argumentative; if you disagree, work it out outside the game.
    6. GMs are people too, and have different play styles; be mature enough to admit if a group is just not a good match for you.
  6. Respect your host.
    1. Be mindful of your hosts’ sensibilities.
    2. Be mindful of your hosts’ efforts and supplies, especially for on-going groups that regularly meet at the same residence.
      • An occasional bag of Cheetos or a 2-liter of Mt. Dew goes a long way, and is a small tribute compared to the hours of effort put into running a campaign.
    3. Many games are held in private residences; abide by your hosts’ house rules.
    4. If not at a private residence, someone still took the time to arrange it; don’t abuse that.
    5. Many times your host and GM are one in the same. Doubly respect that.
  7. Respect the game
    1. Do not bring outside disputes to the table.
    2. Do not be habitually disruptive with unrelated conversations or activities.
    3. Give the game the proper attention that it deserves.
      • Know when it is your turn.
      • Pay attention to what is going on.

Know What’s Expected

  1. Every DM and every campaign is different. Make sure you understand what is expected of you before your first session.
    1. Do you need to have a character already, or will you create them at the first meeting?
    2. Are there any restrictions for characters (such as race or class restrictions)?
    3. Is the campaign purely core rules, homebrew, or somewhere in the middle?
    4. What is the most important aspect of play to the DM?
      • Knowing a DM’s style will determine if it’s a good match before disputes erupt.
  2. Avoid metagaming, unless the DM and other players specifically okay it.
    1. This could break encounters.
    2. This could spoil the endgame for other players.
    3. This could spoil another character’s story (and leave them sorely insulted).
    4. This breaks the suspension of belief and deflates the game/story.
    5. This could fly in the face of a DM who worked very hard to put together a story.
    6. However, sometimes DMs do hide clues in plain sight and break the fourth wall; if in doubt, ask!
  3. You are responsible for having fun.
    1. DMs give players opportunities to have fun; players must engage in meaningful ways in order for meaningful interactions to happen.

Adventurer and Tabletop Etiquette

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