Run games for ADULTS for $

Found this site called Fiverr that promotes online teaching. It claims to be the adult version of Outschool and only takes a 20% cut instead of Outschool’s 30%.

Could you use this to run RPGs for money?


Of the categories listed, DND or whathaveyou would probably fall under “Lifestyle.”

I probably won’t because I think adults have weird expectations about games that they pay for. With kids, their parents pay for it so they just relax. There’s no pressure to “get your money’s worth of fun.”

If adults paid me, I’d imagine they’d expect me to transform into Matt Mercer.

But I can’t.

Not due to dearth of talent, but my hair not being long enough.

It ain’t gon happ’n.


Thought experiment: what if you were to run a game online for adults for money? What would you run?

That got me thinking about what might irk adults about the more freeform/diceless adventures I’m currently running for kids. People who expect things to be more grounded expect the right rules. Not necessarily more rules, but rules that catch more than a simple, universal mechanic. It’s gotta have procedures and things to keep things balanced between players and the players and the world.

And I just so happened to pick up Old-School Essentials (OSE).


Naw, just watch Questing Beast if you’re interested beyond what OSE means for running games for adults.

Anyway, OSE fits the bill. Traditional rules, modern layout and design. It looks pretty and has the necessary rules for dungeon crawling. Send players the free Basic Rules, have plenty of pre-gens on hand. Put the emphasis on challenge, strategy, and mastery. This is a game about beating the game.

I would go with a published mega-dungeon adventure like Stonehell or Barrowmaze and call it a day. Reason being that if we’re exorcising arbitrary things from the ruleset, then using an adventure you wrote undercuts having a more neutral set of rules. Delegate to other designers. Keep yourself clean of tipping the balance in either direction…

So maybe you’re like Matt Mercer.

Maybe you ARE Matt Mercer.

Maybe it’s worth trying out.

Heck, even a small side gig of once or twice a week is good. That’s my schedule right now.

Again, here’s the Fiverr link. And here’s a step by step guide to teaching on Fiverr.

One thought on “Run games for ADULTS for $

  1. So I do actually run paid GMing for adults, I tend to charge $15-20 per player per session which is about the average rate on roll20 which is where I do the bulk of my advertising and very reasonable IMO.

    I’ve found most players aren’t looking for Matt Mercer or expecting that, they’re just looking for a consistently good game with a GM who is compotent, prepared and turns up on time and in business terms Matt Mercer would cost like $1,000 per player per session rather than $15 and most reasonable people realise that difference.

    Though Old School is my preference most people do want to play 5E D&D and that’s what I run, I’ve offered other editions but people are less interested, partly as 5E is new shiny and partly I think as it just offers a wealth of easily accessible material online with lots of different options that people like especially compared to old school games for better or worse.

    I’ve found from my own experience players care a lot more about having lots of cool different player options than they do about background rules and procedure, I tend to import a lot of procedure from the GM side from the likes of OSE and even PBTA games but players really don’t care what’s going on behind the screen that much, they care a lot more about using their new spell or ability or cool custom subclass or what not.

    They also care about playing with cool people and I think especially when finding pick up games online it’s a lot easier to find someone good and pay them than go through the grind of not only finding a GM who accepts you into the group but a group who aren’t lets say problematic.

    Unfortunately most of the consumer base as it were aren’t that interested in megadungeons these days, there’s a small hardcore group of old school players who do like that sorta thing but they’re also the ones less likely to pay for it… People want that wider narrative and storytelling and a lot of people get into it from critical role even if they don’t want you to be matt mercer they want it to feel a bit like that.

    Although I’m currently running the Tomb of Annhilation hexcrawl in one of my paid games which is pretty ‘old school’ in its conception at least so there’s certainly room for other games and it’s all so niche that you may well be able to find 4 people who’d want to pay for a megadungeon experience, the tricks in recruitment and 5e games tend to be the easiest to recruit for, especially new players as well as players looking for specific modules want to play like say Strahd or what not.

    I had thought about advertising on fiver but I’ve found roll20 does the job well enough. Though I do run games online at the moment and fiver could be an interesting place to advertise for in person games when the spectre of covid lifts.

    Anyway cool blog and best of luck with it all!

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