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Messages - FingerRod

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He was stopped short when somebody asked him, "How do you roleplay that?"

What a great example. There is absolutely no hiding from that question.

This has been done a variety of ways across the editions, the main differences being how experience and treasure are handled. NPCs are typically controlled by the GM, but like all things, do whatever is fun.

The Rules Cyclopedia has a really good system for hiring retainers, and I have used a version of it for years.

If I am a player at the table and you are asking me to roll, I sincerely hope there is a chance of random failure. Fake maps and being found while trying to hide is part of what I signed up for.

Could you elaborate a little on the player agency part? I would think random failure also comes with random success, but I am curious to hear more.

The idea is, if the players do well, accomplish the tasks, beat the enemies, what ever that the goal is accomplished. Charon's Little Helper gave a great example in that accomplishing X tasks might still only result in Y percent chance of failure. Say the bad guys are summoning a demon. Instead of pass/fail, it's a dice to see if the summoning is successful, and the characters can increase or decrease the odds by accomplishing whatever, knocking over braziers, peeing on runes, etc. But it still comes down to a random dice roll.
What I'm saying is, say you knock over all the braziers, and pee on all the runes, but that still only gets the odds of disrupting the summoning up to, say, 80%. Roll over an 80, and the PCs fail despite doing everything they could.

Perfect explanation, thank you. I would be disappointed for sure, but also appreciate that you are building a better game. It would make the next time we knocked crap over, peed on some things, etc. but was successful, that much better.

If I am a player at the table and you are asking me to roll, I sincerely hope there is a chance of random failure. Fake maps and being found while trying to hide is part of what I signed up for.

Could you elaborate a little on the player agency part? I would think random failure also comes with random success, but I am curious to hear more.

I don't think I was trying to 'get' you! :)

I guess in my GMing a locked door 99.5% of the time is a simulation element - yes, prison doors would logically be locked & yes - likely the key would be nearby. I sometimes GM published adventures where a door is set up as an obstacle to the players, but I don't think I do that much in my own stuff. I occasionally worry there aren't enough traps in my homebrew D&D games, since I normally only put traps in a dungeon when & if I think someone would have put them there. My players don't generally seem to realise this though, and will freak out at the sight of two facing serpent statues in the tunnel that I only put in for dressing...

Very fair. Given recent behavior from newer members I would certainly understand if you were skeptical of my intent. I am glad you are not.

If traps are your blind spot, giving out magic items is undoubtably mine. Holy crap I take a lot of heat for being stingy on the magic items. For very similar reasons too. You are looking for logical reasons why a trap would be placed, and for me, if something was so magical and great, why would somebody leave it locked up?

At any rate, interesting topic and good read.

As a GM I want to limit the use of previous obstacles as solutions.

Why's that? Is it that you don't want to make it easy for the PCs?

Thanks for the question. My goal is to neither make things hard nor easy for a PC. My goal is for game elements to be fun and compelling. I find action moving forward more compelling than action moving backwards.

The statement you quoted was a supporting statement to the existence of a present obstacle (locked door). If I put a locked door in front of the PCs, it is an opportunity for something interesting to happen. If we are just going to pretend the solution to that locked door was already to be found on something already conquered, why put it there in the first place?

Real story from this weekend involving a locked door... One of the PCs asked me, “Does the door open into the next room or would it open towards me?” I told him it opened towards him. He then wanted to know if it had two or three hinges. At that point I already knew where he was going with it. I told him there were two, he made a shitty face and said, “I want to pop the door off the hinges.”

Now don’t get me wrong, after thousands of locked doors over the years, they are hardly compelling. I have been foiled by which way the door opens a hundred times. Because the PC stayed in the moment he was able to make fun of my shitty door, see that look in my eyes when I knew that he had gotten me, and that made it fun. I did not have to place a key that never existed on a body, and he did not have to evoke his Aspect of Opening Locked Things.

Looking back at your posts, I don’t believe we are entirely disagreeing. I think you want to make sure I am not advocating being a dick for the sake of being a dick, or intentionally finding fun in making things hard for people. I can assure you that type of GMg is not fun. Am I off here or missing something? If so, hit me right between the eyes with it, I am having a Monday of Mondays hah.

Narratively wishing a key on a guard previously encountered to get past a locked door, an example from the video, is lazy and not interesting.

"I search the guard for a key" is fine though, surely - not establishing facts about the world. Most players either say that or "Does the guard have a key?" to which GM should say "You see one" or "You don't see one - are you searching him?"

Absolutely fine.

The example guard Sandy was talking about did not originally have the key. He magically placed it on the body after a player suggested there should have been a key on the guard. He agreed and thought it was a good idea, and then concluded the example saying the players were co-creating the world.

That is certainly a viable way to play a game, almost like a mini aspect of Blades in the Dark or other story games where flashback mechanics can influence the past, present, and future. While viable, I don’t find it compelling.

The locked door is the present obstacle. As a GM I want to limit the use of previous obstacles as solutions. In that example, I might say, “Good idea. It is reasonable some guards would carry keys. The one you dealt with did not have one, but that does not mean another might not.”

When building the scenario, if I had determined the guard had a key and they just forgot to search the guard, that is different.

Edit:  It's a good thing that the players agree with me, because I don't particularly enjoy the whole, "Player throws a monkey wrench into the basis of the campaign and now I need to somehow work it in," activity.  Which might be strange, because I don't mind monkey wrenches tossed by actions of the characters.

This is a great distinction. Character action puts skin in the game, and I will take those monkey wrenches all day too.

Narratively wishing a key on a guard previously encountered to get past a locked door, an example from the video, is lazy and not interesting. This holds true whether I am a player or a GM.

A player in a biweekly game my wife and I also play in probably does this 3/4 the time. One of three things typically happen, the DM allows it, the DM does not allow it, or the player gets a roll without consequences in the event of a miss. Yawn.

Not my tempo.

The players have enough to worry about. If it is something clearly within the nexus of their character, great. I don’t need them making up wars, conflicts between NPCs, or using flashback mechanics to change some aspect of the world.

Want there to be a war? Figure out how to start one. Conflicts between NPCs? Tell the sheriff that the shopkeep is plowing his daughter.

I almost never care, just do not be lazy about it.

First, absolutely agree on the impact and usefulness of the 1e DMG.

One of my favorite GM tools to come out of the OSR is the Random Esoteric Creature Generator by LotFP/Raggi. If I ever need to come up with some random seeds for the campaign, I just roll up 4-5 monsters. They are super fun to create, and easy to insert into the campaign.

I like Phil a lot—and SJ has a brilliant mind for mechanics and building games. I backed TFT, picking up the legendary edition (or whatever it was called) and gifted a second one to my brother. It took around a year to get it, and after, they immediately launched another KS for add on items to further support the system.

I found the way they were bringing it to market annoying, and I don’t want to fill out my SJGs Christmas list each year. I get it..if you can do math and understand the business at all, you can almost guarantee to not lose money with KS. However, they have resources and are an established company. They could have been producing that shit and putting it in their stores.

That said, I hope there is a GURPS 5e. We need talented people to continue to make games. I would also support the idea of full games over a 5e.


So, it begs the question - how much were Bob Bledsaw and Judges Guild paid for the rights to Dark Tower? Is that money being earmarked for the floundering CSIO Kickstarter, or is it going to be spent on hookers and blow - or some other such nonsense?

Yeah, when I read that, my first response was, no, it does not beg a question. It is nobody’s fucking business. People begging for that answer are only in search of their next outrage. Those IPs were around decades before BBJ’s meltdown.

Curious what SJWs are. Haven't scanned these forums in some time.

Empty voids of self-misery.

The political spectrum is not a straight line drawn from left to right. The further you go in any direction the closer you get to wrapping around and meeting the other extreme.

Real SJWs are miserable people who lack any real tie to society, so they continuously push and pull everything to the left. Once it reaches critical mass, they turn on themselves or move on to the next environment to poison.

Look at any RPG forum after it has been infected. Message boards or subs that were once vibrate with topics and conversation retain a small fraction of their activity, with the arsonists, of course, not participating. They never really wanted to.

Yesterday in the /rpg sub a user requested ideas for creating a most-likely doomed character storyline (there were planned ways to avoid actual doom, and the request was for ideas for a fevered dream state). They were immediately accosted by a user obsessed with wondering if they had “permission”, continuously berating the poster in a barrage of baseless assumptions. After 5-6 of these replies, the user deleted the thread, and their account. I quickly scanned the history of our valiant warrior, and their job done, they were already onto the next person.

Running two games, one using Cthulhu Dark and one using my own Frankenstein’s monster of a system. One is a family game, the other family and friends. Both in person.

Playing 5e every other week with friends and the old lady. It is our adults only game. This one is unfortunately on Roll20 until we all get chipped.

Alot of people say that of the Tyranny of Dragons set too. But its fairly open to how you approach it. Problem is it presents alot of stuff as if they should or even will happen. Jettison that and just use the stuff as a guide in case the party does follow the course, or adapt as they veer off.

Example. The PCs are "supposed" to join a merchant trek and spy on the cult. Instead my players continued theur guise from before of pretending to be cult members and followed this through all the way to the cults swamp base, and then beyond. If things happened that were "supposed to happen" then that was only because the players themselves veered the course that way before promptly going back off and proceeding in their own way.

Do that with any of the 5e modues when they start to sound too linear.

I did a very similar thing with the first half of Tyranny when running Hoard of the Dragon Queen. We zoomed way in and slowed down the timeline. We still did the caravan, and hit all of the locations, but it felt a lot more organic. I also brought horror elements into the cult. I want to say we were able to get 10-12 months out of Hoard.

Something like B/X or Lamentations would run really well with that module.

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