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Polyhedral Pretend Time!

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    DichotomyDichotomy Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    god damn that looks good

    Dichotomy on
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    FishmanFishman Put your goddamned hand in the goddamned Box of Pain. Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I swear to God, there are times I just want to throttle my players.


    So, this week they discovered a wealth of information on a secret Cult. The Cult is sorta interesting, but it's just one of a dozen factions trying to kill the PCs while searching for Big Artifact of Doom.

    However, the Dragon who knows the next step to find Big Artifact of Doom is very interested in the Secret Cult. I thought I had signposted this enough to be an obvious information exchange, right?

    Apparently not. The party go off to see Prince of Other-faction-also-trying-to-kill-the-PCs, in an attempt to get a single extra piece of paper about Secret Cult. Bear in mind they have just captured multiple letters, a chest full of personal journals, rituals, arcane calculations and the encryption/decryption stones necessary to forge their own (fake) letters between cult members.

    The meeting goes about as good as it possibly can, where, roughly, Prince lets them live in exchange for them spying on About-the-only-faction-not-trying-to-kill-the-PCs.

    They then go to see Dragon-with-information. They give over their wealth-of-information in exchange - not for information-everyone-wants, but a single extra piece of paper that he had them get for him earlier.
    I have to shake my head at this, because they knew that piece of paper was worthless, yet they seemed to do it out of a desire to build rapport with a Dragon they are openly hostile towards, and the last time they met Dragon, he sold them into slavery. Not out of any malicious intent, but because he is a Dragon, and therefore greedy and capricious. I mean, slavery got them out a bind they couldn't otherwise escape, but still, slavery.

    Knowing they might be just that stupid, I had also given them one other tidbit they could trade with Dragon: the location of another Secret Cult base.

    What I hadn't counted on them doing was outright telling him about the base and asking what he knew about it (nothing, although he was very thankful that they had just handed over this information for free).

    Only then did they ask about the Single-most-important-piece-of-information-in-the-game. Once they had run out of information to trade. And agreed to spy on one of the few factions that still likes them for a faction that is trying to kill them.


    Urge... to choke... rising...

    Fishman on
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    The Black HunterThe Black Hunter The key is a minimum of compromise, and a simple, unimpeachable reason to existRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Best way to handle that, is to let them do it and have it all pile up on top of them

    The Black Hunter on
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    TankHammerTankHammer Atlanta Ghostbuster Atlanta, GARegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Kill 'em and hope the next group of adventurers is a bit smarter.

    TankHammer on
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    OminousLozengeOminousLozenge Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Best way to handle that, is to let them do it and have it all pile up on top of them

    I agree with this wholeheartedly. When I run games, I usually take a pretty even hand with the plot. I give the players a good amount of slack, and as long as they're roleplaying their characters consistently I'll let them get into some stupid problems of their own creation and come out with significant-but-not-catastrophic consequences. But there's a point where they've just been plum dumb, and after I feel I've given them plenty of chances, handed out more than enough information to help them make intelligent decisions, and especially upped the ante with some clear signs that consequences for failure or stupidity are rapidly getting dire... well, it's on them what happens next.

    Maybe they allow a dark god to be resurrected, or let some nefarious organization or entity get its hands on the Doomstick, or whatever. Suddenly this becomes a campaign about redemption while the group whose wrong actions or inactions brought about a major apocalyptic event seek to right their own wrongs. Either that or they end up going out in a blaze of misplaced glory throwing themselves at the now-nigh-unstoppable bad thing.

    Another alternative, especially if they fail and die in the process of allowing the bad thing to happen, you have them roll up fresh new characters some number of years post-cataclysmic event. Then their new characters have to go right the wrongs wrought on the world by their old characters' failures. It'd be especially devious if the source of the problem was something of a mystery, and they learn along the way that it was their own characters who did this.

    However, all these options assume the players are largely capable and have either failed to realize that you're running a game with actual consequences (seems some DMs let the players get away with doing truly stupid shit again and again, so they forget about things like causality and consequence), or some other calamity of poor decision making befell a usually-solid group. Kind of a "when good gamers do dumb things" scenario that snowballed horribly on you. Regardless, I'm really curious to know how things turn out. :)

    OminousLozenge on
    Sometimes I have ideas for things.
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    EdcrabEdcrab Actually a hack Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Best way to handle that, is to let them do it and have it all pile up on top of them

    I agree with this wholeheartedly. When I run games, I usually take a pretty even hand with the plot. I give the players a good amount of slack, and as long as they're roleplaying their characters consistently I'll let them get into some stupid problems of their own creation and come out with significant-but-not-catastrophic consequences. But there's a point where they've just been plum dumb, and after I feel I've given them plenty of chances, handed out more than enough information to help them make intelligent decisions, and especially upped the ante with some clear signs that consequences for failure or stupidity are rapidly getting dire... well, it's on them what happens next.

    All this, a million times over. I have absolutely zero qualms about giving the party a break every now and then, but sometimes people do incredibly stupid things; the time a rifleman opened fire on a blastproof walking tank during a diplomatic exchange springs to mind.

    But the strangest and most brazen example has to be in a traditonal D&D game where the party's "silver-tongued" leader gave the baddies game-breaking information. Fishman's story really struck a nerve with me, because the leader did this not in return for safe passage, not to save some guys life, but he gave them integral information while undercover and in a position of safety just in return for some paltry supplies.

    Said information was the location of the fortified, hidden city where the good guys hid from the outside world's murderous status quo and all the jealous warring factions. It was also home to most of the party's family and friends.

    The main plot centred around the Evil faction having access to mass teleportation. Ergo, the Big Bad's army swept down on the city and everyone was dead or enslaved within an hour.

    Edcrab on
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    DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) What's up, bootlickers?Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I know many DMs prefer to let the players do stupid shit in the name of the game


    but my policy has always been to call out incredibly stupid ideas

    just to avoid the kind of stuff I've been hearing

    Doobh on
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    IvarIvar Oslo, NorwayRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I had a DM once that said stuff like "Suddenly, you realize that this would be a terrible idea"

    Ivar on
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    TankHammerTankHammer Atlanta Ghostbuster Atlanta, GARegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    One of our players is going insane from PTSD and the DM has been very accomodating when he decides to do things like scream and smash magical/alchemical devices used for traveling between worlds. There was some collateral damage, however. Somebody/ies got shredded while passing between worlds. Our avenger got covered in blood while my elf wrestled the hysterical bard to the ground and calmed him down.

    It was a fun moment. The DM was sad his dice never let him throw a wandering monster at us while we were separated and distracted.

    TankHammer on
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    WhytherWhyther Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    "I'm going to rob the alchemist!"

    "Are you sure that is what you want to do?"

    "Yep."

    "Remember those four statues in his shop that look like Iron Golems? I mentioned those, right?"

    "Yeah. So do I roll for initiative first or can I just make my attack?"

    ----

    "Okay let's give them the magic sword."

    "Are you sure?"

    "Yeah, they say they are the priests of Pelor."

    "They might just be evil highwaymen, though."

    "But I'm Lawful Good, this is what my character would do."

    ----

    "You're going to steal the living incarnation of a god's golden cattle to cross the desert of his worshipers?"

    "When Terrön Baird rides, he rides in style."

    "Are you sure that's what you want to do?"

    "I have never been more sure of anything else in my life."

    Whyther on
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    TankHammerTankHammer Atlanta Ghostbuster Atlanta, GARegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    "Okay the door does not appear to have any kind of physical lock that you can see, but there are splinters of wood and tool marks all over the surface. Little bits of the door are on the floor, as if they were knocked out by a blade or an axe."

    "We push the door open"

    "The door gives you some resistance, make a strength roll"


    *succeeds*

    "Okay, there's a body on the other side of the door. It looks like a soldier but it's very old and mummified. He is holding an axe that's also very old and rusted. It looks like he was desperately trying to get out of the room."

    "Anything else in the room?"


    "There are 4 bedrolls and the remains of some kind of fire. 4 packs sit against the wall and 4 other mummies are huddled together in the far corner."

    ...

    "We enter the room"


    "All of you?"

    "Yes."

    "As the last one of you passes through the door, it slams shut behind you and is held by an unseen force. There is no other exit to the room."

    "Shit. Let's see what's in their packs at lea-"

    "The bodies begin to animate."

    "Shit."

    "Roll for initiative."

    TankHammer on
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    HellaJeffHellaJeff FAB FRESH RAIIINBOOWWWWWRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Tonnkka, I been using krypton white spray primer

    HellaJeff on
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    MrMonroeMrMonroe passed out on the floor nowRegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    "all of you?" is such a terrible DM question to ask

    because immediately they all start metagaming trying to figure out whether they dislike being split up or dislike being together more

    MrMonroe on
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    TankHammerTankHammer Atlanta Ghostbuster Atlanta, GARegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I was paraphrasing.

    What actually happened is the bard rushed-in, thinking we needed help and the door shut but that would take too many lines of dialog so I personified the party as one voice.

    TankHammer on
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    DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) What's up, bootlickers?Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    MrMonroe wrote: »
    "all of you?" is such a terrible DM question to ask

    because immediately they all start metagaming trying to figure out whether they dislike being split up or dislike being together more

    that's why you switch things up by asking them the same question when it doesn't matter, and mixing up the encounters on a frequent basis

    so then they metagame their metagaming and realize it's no use

    Doobh on
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    HunteraHuntera Rude Boy Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ok. I was in my local Games-Workshop, and instead of just picking up a Dark Eldar codex for a a friend like I was going too, I also ordered Tiqtaq'to and bought some Tau stealth suits.

    Probably gonna expanding my Lizardmen army, and getting into Fantasy for actual game purposes, what units are totally irredeemably bad?

    (Lie to me if that unit is Terradons.)

    Huntera on
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    MereHappenstanceMereHappenstance Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Generally when the party I dm for does something stupid, I let them know that I have no problem killing their characters.

    Actually, I let the dice decide which one dies. I mainly do this for my own entertainment.

    MereHappenstance on
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    TonkkaTonkka Some one in the club tonight Has stolen my ideas.Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    HellaJeff wrote: »
    Tonnkka, I been using krypton white spray primer

    Do you mean Krylon?

    I have never heard of Krypton.

    Tonkka on
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    StiltsStilts Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Dubh wrote: »
    MrMonroe wrote: »
    "all of you?" is such a terrible DM question to ask

    because immediately they all start metagaming trying to figure out whether they dislike being split up or dislike being together more

    that's why you switch things up by asking them the same question when it doesn't matter, and mixing up the encounters on a frequent basis

    so then they metagame their metagaming and realize it's no use

    I actually did that during my last session.

    In some of the pre-made adventures I've adapted to fit my story, there have been statues that animated and attacked.

    So last session, there was a large room lined with statues that I described in detail. My players immediately thought, "These things are going to attack," so they threw some at-wills at the stationary statues.

    "Nothing happens," I say.

    "Okay, we walk into the room."

    "All right."

    "Does anything happen?"

    "No."

    "Oh.......okay. We leave the room and try the north exit this time."

    Stilts on
    IKknkhU.gif
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    DichotomyDichotomy Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    how many times in a fantasy setting do you come across statues that remain inanimate, though

    Dichotomy on
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    webguy20webguy20 I spend too much time on the Internet Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Dichotomy wrote: »
    how many times in a fantasy setting do you come across statues that remain inanimate, though

    its like asking how many times does a door not have a trap on it?

    webguy20 on
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    DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) What's up, bootlickers?Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    webguy20 wrote: »
    Dichotomy wrote: »
    how many times in a fantasy setting do you come across statues that remain inanimate, though

    its like asking how many times does a door not have a trap on it?

    If the DM's running a Gygax-styled game, these are the least of your worries

    Doobh on
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    OrikaeshigitaeOrikaeshigitae Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited May 2011
    i think i'm going to start running a d&d campaign for my friends back in ontario using masterplan, skype, and maybe google docs

    i sent out a message, i'm hoping that people will be interested (people will probably be interested)

    has anyone run online games before? what sort of problems should I expect/work against/design adventures to accomodate?

    Orikaeshigitae on
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    EdcrabEdcrab Actually a hack Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Skype sounds like a great tool to streamline encounters, otherwise you'll find online games to be a helluva lot more sluggish than the real thing

    Edcrab on
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    OminousLozengeOminousLozenge Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    i think i'm going to start running a d&d campaign for my friends back in ontario using masterplan, skype, and maybe google docs

    i sent out a message, i'm hoping that people will be interested (people will probably be interested)

    has anyone run online games before? what sort of problems should I expect/work against/design adventures to accomodate?

    I've run and played in a couple of online games. Skype would definitely have helped in many regards, although one advantage of all-text is that it's easier to just say, "This guy has a French accent," than ask people to hear your non-French voice and accept that the character you're portraying is speaking with an accent. It's a pretty small advantage, though, because on the negative side text takes, at an estimate, 2-3 times as long as verbal communication.

    One thing I would recommend is a virtual tabletop environment. Is that what Masterplan is? I've never heard of that application. As a point of reference, I used Fantasy Grounds II. There was document and image sharing functionality, maps with a removable fog of war via a masking layer, and a map with tokens that update for everyone in real-time. Also, a dice-roller and the ability to make dice scripts. I think there are free alternatives that accomplish these things (Maptools maybe). I really liked having a virtual tabletop, and in a lot of ways I think the virtual tabletop is much cleaner than playing on a physical surface. The dice never go off the table or land cockeyed, and there's no bumping the table that causes all your meticulously-placed tiles to shift.

    Assuming you all have good connections and Skype doesn't lag on you, that and a tabletop program of some sort should work pretty well. The only thing you'll probably be missing is the camaraderie of crowding around a table together. :)

    OminousLozenge on
    Sometimes I have ideas for things.
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    TankHammerTankHammer Atlanta Ghostbuster Atlanta, GARegistered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Our DM is a real pro and he's constantly torturing us.

    He sometimes rolls dice for (seemingly) no reason behind his screen.

    He asks us if we are sure about things all the time.

    I'll ask to inspect a door for traps and he'll ask what part of the door I'm inspecting.

    He'll ask us to randomly make D20 rolls if he feels we're hanging around in a room too long.

    The only thing he doesn't do is put useless architectural flourishes.
    He's a programmer by day so he can get pretty devious with his systems but his descriptions of the world are sometimes pretty flat.

    TankHammer on
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    HunteraHuntera Rude Boy Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Someone pick a Blood Bowl: Legendary Edition team to play, I feel like playing it today, but I'm horrible at picking a race to use.

    Huntera on
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    DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) What's up, bootlickers?Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    TankHammer wrote: »
    Our DM is a real pro and he's constantly torturing us.

    He sometimes rolls dice for (seemingly) no reason behind his screen.

    He asks us if we are sure about things all the time.

    I'll ask to inspect a door for traps and he'll ask what part of the door I'm inspecting.

    He'll ask us to randomly make D20 rolls if he feels we're hanging around in a room too long.

    The only thing he doesn't do is put useless architectural flourishes.
    He's a programmer by day so he can get pretty devious with his systems but his descriptions of the world are sometimes pretty flat.

    I get too lazy to do all the cool DM stuff

    rolling random dice?

    pfffff

    really, though, it's mostly because of the group in San Jose

    they ain't remotely "serious" about playing, mostly it's a chance to sit around the table and make a bunch of jokes

    which is all fine and dandy, but comedy is my weak point

    Doobh on
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    PiptheFairPiptheFair Frequently not in boats. Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    TankHammer wrote: »
    Our DM is a real pro and he's constantly torturing us.

    He sometimes rolls dice for (seemingly) no reason behind his screen.

    He asks us if we are sure about things all the time.

    I'll ask to inspect a door for traps and he'll ask what part of the door I'm inspecting.

    He'll ask us to randomly make D20 rolls if he feels we're hanging around in a room too long.

    The only thing he doesn't do is put useless architectural flourishes.
    He's a programmer by day so he can get pretty devious with his systems but his descriptions of the world are sometimes pretty flat.

    my dm once put an apple at the top of an illusionary staircase

    it took us over an hour to get to the apple because of fucking minotaurs

    then another hour trying to figure out what the significance of this apple was

    one of the evil wizards had dropped part of their lunch and it was just a fucking apple

    PiptheFair on
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    DarkPrimusDarkPrimus Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Fucking minotaurs for an hour? Must have been a lot of endurance checks.

    DarkPrimus on
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    DoobhDoobh She/Her, Ace Pan/Bisexual 8-) What's up, bootlickers?Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    not if it's 3e

    that's a lot of grapple checks to make

    Doobh on
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    StiltsStilts Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Ugh, grapple checks.

    Make it easy on yourself and use Pathfinder. Combat "Maneuver" checks.

    Stilts on
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    Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous Blame this on the misfortune of your birth. New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    (un)funny story.

    FATAL's combat rules are so fucked that apparently the best combat character is an ogre wrestler that rapes people to death.

    Because for some godforsaken reason one of the few ways to instantly kill someone is to rupture their rectum.

    Meanwhile the guy who's trying to kill people with a sword is going to waste most of his time giving utterly non-fatal wounds to specific minor internal organs.

    Der Waffle Mous on
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    Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous Blame this on the misfortune of your birth. New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    In saner news, Strands of Fate seriously looks like the best thing ever.



    Also, Garran Crowe vs. a 100 boy mob of Orks is the most hilarious thing.

    Der Waffle Mous on
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    StiltsStilts Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    As I was thinking up endgame scenarios for my current campaign, I suddenly realized that I'd really like to see a 4E Spelljammer book.

    It will probably never happen, though.

    Stilts on
    IKknkhU.gif
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    Der Waffle MousDer Waffle Mous Blame this on the misfortune of your birth. New Yark, New Yark.Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I used to think one might've been upcoming beyond the Manual of the Planes version.

    But no.

    This year the campaign setting they're releasing is essentially Forgotten Realms again.

    Der Waffle Mous on
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    StiltsStilts Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    I just checked the D&D website to find what book you were talking about and found they had just released a Shadowfell book.

    How convenient, my players are going to the Shadowfell next session.

    Stilts on
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    UrielUriel Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    (un)funny story.

    FATAL's combat rules are so fucked that apparently the best combat character is an ogre wrestler that rapes people to death.

    Because for some godforsaken reason one of the few ways to instantly kill someone is to rupture their rectum.

    Meanwhile the guy who's trying to kill people with a sword is going to waste most of his time giving utterly non-fatal wounds to specific minor internal organs.

    Doesn't the entire "system" rely on D1000 rolls?

    Uriel on
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    FishmanFishman Put your goddamned hand in the goddamned Box of Pain. Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Mostly the system relies on only being played by misogynistic assholes with a sense of humour that makes a three-year-old's potty jokes seem sophisticated.

    Fishman on
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    UrielUriel Registered User regular
    edited May 2011
    Well that is a given.

    Still the mechanics must be as stupid as the other stuff.

    Uriel on
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