Thursday 16 February 2012

I made this! Homemade Basic D&D Dungeon Masters (sic) Screen

I've been seized by the desire to play some (very) old skool roleplay so we're kicking off a Basic D&D campaign tomorrow night with me as DM. Yes, you read right, BASIC D&D.

As the game was so simple in the basic form I figure I can just about run it using only the module in play plus the various charts and tables i.e. a DM's screen. But where to get one? They're OOP and subject to a fair bit of use being used for every game by anyone who owns one. Chances are any I find will be overly expensive or in pretty awful shape.

Sooooo... rather than bother trying to find one I decided to have a bash at making my own. I found all the charts and tables easily enough on the web in text form, massaged a few and added the bits and pieces I wanted. Somewhat enthused by the whole process I also made a "cover" based on the red box set covers.

And here she is in all her glory. Double sided, on thick black card with joints of heavy fabric tape. She has character type info on the outside for the players and the critical info on the inside for the DM. Just the ticket!

Outside showing "cover" and character type data tables i.e. level progression and saving throws
Inside showing DM type data and tables i.e. combat, cleric's turning, thief's skills and item costs
Here's all the individual pages including the "cover". Note the stern instruction to players regards their obedience and also the deliberate lack of punctuation regards ownership, just like the original books. :-)

I should point out that the images and data are all copyright of the authors and publishers, even if it is from the very mists of time. You can download a copy for yourself here.

So now I'm ready to rock. Time to roll some dice, check that THAC0 and give a carrion crawler what's coming to him.



  1. Nice Idea! Simple to construct, too! Glad you took the time and effort to do this; it's inspired Me to try it...wish me luck, huh! Lol!

  2. looks great. Could you please comment on how it was made?

    1. Hello Unknown! I assume you're referring to the layout of the tables and text. It's all done in MS Word with the copy re-keyed from my copies of the original game books. I was going to us InDesign but it turned out easier to manage tables in a word processor. Once it was layed out I output to PDF and then printed from there.

  3. This is an awesome resource. I have just started to teach my son how to play and we are starting with the basics, my old TSR Red Box from the 80s. This is going to help out a lot, thanks.

  4. This is very cool. I'm playing/running my first game of basic next weekend. This will help a lot. So far I've Played 4e, 5e and pathfinder. It will be different running a game that doesn't rely heavily on skill checks. My plan is to keep the to-hit tables, and use 3d6 and 4d6 for the ability checks, but keeping these limited.


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