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Frenth Alunril
2015-01-14, 11:20 AM
Technically, you always have the OOC option of, "Dude, you're ruining the game. You are dis-invited to participate. Okay, everybody else, we're going to do some meta-discussion and narrate how we get out of this, and I'd like your input on how you think would set up the most interesting tale going forward..."

Oh, I know this is a "worst player" thing, but when I warned him he was ruining the game, I gave him a last chance rp, "let's get this right" situation. While breaking into a magical warehouse on the plane of fire, I abducted him to a pocket dimension where a genie got him to agree to help steal a specific item. He agreed, and the moment he returned, he attacked the genie, so when everyone at the table facepalmed, I proceeded to murder the party.

Kicked him out the next week. I asked the players to retcon, but they felt he had ruined the game so hard they weren't even interested because they didn't even remember who they were anymore.

I can't imagine how terrible his DMing must have been.

DontEatRawHagis
2015-01-14, 12:46 PM
Well there was that one time when we all came to the DM's house to play...

"Um, guys, I actually didn't prepare anything."

"But DM, why?"

"Eh. Too hard."

And this was after he promised us a cool story and asked questions on the roles of our characters. Suffice to say, he never DMed again.

Once had a DM who did this 100% of the time. He kept the games consistent that we did have but he lost interest within 2 games.

Knaight
2015-01-14, 04:21 PM
Well there was that one time when we all came to the DM's house to play...

"Um, guys, I actually didn't prepare anything."

"But DM, why?"

"Eh. Too hard."

And this was after he promised us a cool story and asked questions on the roles of our characters. Suffice to say, he never DMed again.

:smallannoyed:

I'm all for no-prep improvisation if you can do it, but not prepping and then canceling the game without warning anyone beforehand, when your reason is sheer laziness? Not cool.

Milodiah
2015-01-15, 12:49 AM
Could be worse. She could show up with a boyfriend and a krakken or something.

Man, don't you hate it when your kids flaunt a parade of oddly promiscuous mythical beasts before you just to piss you off? I know I do.

Svata
2015-01-15, 01:02 AM
I'm just trying very hard not to say "We're in an infinite recursion of time."

The Higurashi characters aren't consciously aware of the time-loop enough to make for good sound-bites about it. Also in Higurashi the time-loop is a good thing. It's the mundane reality literally everything else outside of the main characters (and sometimes even them) that's malignant.

Ftfy. Characters and such madness.

Togath
2015-01-18, 06:44 PM
I have sometimes wondered if I'm a bad gm...
I tend to have trouble remembering to actually plan encounters ahead of time, and am bad at scaling fights.
I usually make maps... usually... But I'm bad at predicting where my players will wander, and tend to stumble if they go in an odd direction.:smallredface:

I am very open to character concepts and classes, but I do wonder if I made a bad choice in having the characters encounter an alternate material plane(the game was set in Ebberon. It's now in a homebrew setting, with them working to get back to Ebberon, and a plot that the party is mostly unaware of, since I can't figure out how to introduce it without having the villain appear and give a monolog).

Sorry if I sidetracked the thread a bit...
Realized halfway through writing that this post might have been better as a thread on it's own...

YossarianLives
2015-01-18, 07:48 PM
Man, don't you hate it when your kids flaunt a parade of oddly promiscuous mythical beasts before you just to piss you off? I know I do.
I think I'd be more worried about the fact that my daughter is attracted to giant squids.

Solaris
2015-01-20, 01:06 AM
I think I'd be more worried about the fact that my daughter is attracted to giant squids.

Hey, with all that naughty tentacle hentai they make, somebody's gotta have that 'interest'.

Alberic Strein
2015-01-20, 01:31 AM
"If you can think about it, it's someone's fetish"

Ps: Which brings us to the sorta-disturbing-conclusion that someone not only likes those godawful games but they are even one's fetish.

Arbane
2015-01-20, 02:53 AM
"If you can think about it, it's someone's fetish"

Ps: Which brings us to the sorta-disturbing-conclusion that someone not only likes those godawful games but they are even one's fetish.

You mean besides the GM?

nrg89
2015-01-20, 03:33 AM
I think I've messed up as a DM more than I've seen other DM's mess up, but there was one DM who was absolutely awful.


1. It was a city whose gimmick was that no magic was allowed. He'd spent many days working on it and really wanted us to go there. Our characters was pursuing a fellow party member who had betrayed us (played by this DM) and we felt we should stock up since he took a lot of our gear and there was absolutely no big plot happening or anything, finding him to reclaim our gear was the entire focus of the campaign now. But, he pleaded that we should go to the city and we did.

2. We learn that the guy we're chasing, a level 14 assassin, has blackmailed a level 23 wizard into working for him now, in the span of just two weeks. Ok.

3. We're walking around in the square and this guy's minions attack from every direction. This was done to counter the fact that one of the players was a power gamed gish who was really good at taking out one guy, but not a whole lot of them. My previous character was dead and I had very recently rolled up a cleric who promptly made every single one of his minions deaf and blind with Holy Word.
"What?", he exclaimed. "Let me see that!"
As he read the spell again and again you could see the cogs turning in his head.
"Ok, they all remember how they got here, so they turn around and go back."
"Ok", I said. "I can buy that they're not in shock for suddenly losing their vision and hearing, and I can buy that they remember exactly, down to the square feet, they were at when the spell struck. But shouldn't they at least be impaired when they run back?"
"No, why would they?"
"There's a reason blind people have canes even for places they're familiar with, you can't possibly tell me they run and take corners at their normal, full running speeds just as well after losing their vision and hearing, the latter of which is also used for balance?"
Well, apparently they can. These guys didn't need Jesus.

turbo164
2015-01-20, 10:14 AM
I think I've messed up as a DM more than I've seen other DM's mess up, but there was one DM who was absolutely awful.


1. It was a city whose gimmick was that no magic was allowed. He'd spent many days working on it and really wanted us to go there. Our characters was pursuing a fellow party member who had betrayed us (played by this DM) and we felt we should stock up since he took a lot of our gear and there was absolutely no big plot happening or anything, finding him to reclaim our gear was the entire focus of the campaign now. But, he pleaded that we should go to the city and we did.

2. We learn that the guy we're chasing, a level 14 assassin, has blackmailed a level 23 wizard into working for him now, in the span of just two weeks. Ok.

3. We're walking around in the square and this guy's minions attack from every direction. This was done to counter the fact that one of the players was a power gamed gish who was really good at taking out one guy, but not a whole lot of them. My previous character was dead and I had very recently rolled up a cleric who promptly made every single one of his minions deaf and blind with Holy Word.
"What?", he exclaimed. "Let me see that!"
As he read the spell again and again you could see the cogs turning in his head.
"Ok, they all remember how they got here, so they turn around and go back."
"Ok", I said. "I can buy that they're not in shock for suddenly losing their vision and hearing, and I can buy that they remember exactly, down to the square feet, they were at when the spell struck. But shouldn't they at least be impaired when they run back?"
"No, why would they?"
"There's a reason blind people have canes even for places they're familiar with, you can't possibly tell me they run and take corners at their normal, full running speeds just as well after losing their vision and hearing, the latter of which is also used for balance?"
Well, apparently they can. These guys didn't need Jesus.



Blinded

The character cannot see. He takes a -2 penalty to Armor Class, loses his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any), moves at half speed, and takes a -4 penalty on Search checks and on most Strength- and Dexterity-based skill checks. All checks and activities that rely on vision (such as reading and Spot checks) automatically fail. All opponents are considered to have total concealment (50% miss chance) to the blinded character. Characters who remain blinded for a long time grow accustomed to these drawbacks and can overcome some of them.

Blind-Fight feat improves speed to 3/4 normal...

Wonder what was so special about those minions that he changed the rules to save them rather than just "Um, 17 more come out while you're chasing the first batch!" lol... maybe they were limited in number like the Ringwraiths! :P

satcharna
2015-01-20, 11:49 AM
Going by the fact that a rogue managed to get a wizard into submission, and that said wizard was level 23, I doubt that they're using 3.5.

hymer
2015-01-20, 11:58 AM
Going by the fact that a rogue managed to get a wizard into submission, and that said wizard was level 23, I doubt that they're using 3.5.

Remember it's two NPCs run by a bad DM, and nrg89 implies that it's something that needs to be glossed over rather than thought about with a dry 'Ok' after stating it. :smallbiggrin:

Honest Tiefling
2015-01-20, 12:42 PM
I'm just amused by the image of a gang of thugs somehow all thinking to themselves that 'Well, this is a bit unpleasant. I'm going home'. They all calmly shuffle away from the battle without bonking into each other, without even saying anything to either the people they were hired to kill or each other.

Lord Torath
2015-01-20, 02:28 PM
I'm just amused by the image of a gang of thugs somehow all thinking to themselves that 'Well, this is a bit unpleasant. I'm going home'. They all calmly shuffle away from the battle without bonking into each other, without even saying anything to either the people they were hired to kill or each other.This is a public square, yes? That means they don't trip over any cats, dogs, carts, wagons, horses, or small children that have moved into their path since they were blinded and deafened.

I'd have told the DM to let you blindfold him, put some loud music on his MP3 player's earbuds, and send him to the bathroom without touching the walls. At a run. If he can do that, then I could see letting him get away with that. Unless there was some magical/psionic thing going on with the thugs...? Because that could be an interesting development. But I'm guessing their semi-magical blind-and-deaf navigation was just swept under the rug and ignored. There was probably just some reason you couldn't be permitted to capture and interrogate anyone, right? Which is why he appears in this thread!

Honest Tiefling
2015-01-20, 02:30 PM
I also like the idea that none of them think that the armed people they were just facing might have something to say about this? No surrendering, no taunts, no nothing, just all flee as a blind clumsy herd?

Spojaz
2015-01-20, 03:43 PM
I think the DM's idea was for you to beat most of them, then follow the fleeing survivors back to their leader for the real fight. You took the plot significance out of the fight by blinding them, and he was trying to salvage it, not thinking of interrogation or other ways to get back to the leader in the heat of the moment.

Honest Tiefling
2015-01-20, 04:01 PM
Everyone makes mistakes. But the fact that he did not admit once the hilarity of the character's actions were pointed out makes him a bad DM. There is no shame in admitting to mistakes, and most people prefer it, especially if they have made a good or clever move. People will understand if they have thrown you off a bit.

nrg89
2015-01-21, 03:46 AM
Wonder what was so special about those minions that he changed the rules to save them rather than just "Um, 17 more come out while you're chasing the first batch!" lol... maybe they were limited in number like the Ringwraiths! :P A DM is only one guy, and the players are many who can play different ways of thinking off against each other when they face a problem. They are better equipped at solving problems than you are making them, so if I was him I would've sent more minions just like you said. Just fess up that you built the encounter around one member of the party and didn't expect that the new cleric would throw off the plans completely, we would've understood that much better than a horde of Dare Devils.


Going by the fact that a rogue managed to get a wizard into submission, and that said wizard was level 23, I doubt that they're using 3.5. This happened during down time. I questioned the NPC who gave us this information how in any of Hells Layers a 14th level assassin could threaten a 23rd level wizard with anything other than a five minute delay on her trip to the market? He told me that he was assassinating her customers and had kidnapped the last of them. Seeing as this woman was having an affair with the mayor, was a war hero and filthy goddamn rich why didn't the city watch (made up of powerful gishes) help her? They are enforcing the ban on magic done by unauthorized wizards, they don't have time.
I went to get a bowl of snacks then because I might as well try to get some answers from that.


I'm just amused by the image of a gang of thugs somehow all thinking to themselves that 'Well, this is a bit unpleasant. I'm going home'. They all calmly shuffle away from the battle without bonking into each other, without even saying anything to either the people they were hired to kill or each other. I was mostly pissed off when it happened because that encounter basically says "your suspension of belief is not that important, actually", but now, I can see how hilarious it is! :smallbiggrin:


This is a public square, yes? That means they don't trip over any cats, dogs, carts, wagons, horses, or small children that have moved into their path since they were blinded and deafened. Come to think of it, I distinctly remember that they appeared "from the crowds" and stuff like that. That crowd was even more impressive than the minions, because they must've run away and hidden faster than the wind!


Unless there was some magical/psionic thing going on with the thugs...? No. They came less prepared than Hansel and Gretzel, at least they had bread crumbs...


I also like the idea that none of them think that the armed people they were just facing might have something to say about this? No surrendering, no taunts, no nothing, just all flee as a blind clumsy herd? Nope, though we managed to capture almost every single one of them (they were all rogues in very light armor, and he at least knew that dex disappears from the AC once you can't see [we had an even higher level rogue ourselves]) and interrogated them. People have already bitched and moaned about DMs who don't know what intimidate does in this thread to death, so I'll spare you the story about that and summarize it with the fact that 10 thugs being interrogated with an elixir of truth did not reveal their base of operations even though they knew how to get there blindfolded (literally).
"It says right here, they don't have to answer your questions when they have the elixir!"
"Are you kidding me? We rolled 29 on our intimidate check! What the hell does that do?"
"Well, they scream of terror, but not something that makes sense."


I think the DM's idea was for you to beat most of them, then follow the fleeing survivors back to their leader for the real fight. You took the plot significance out of the fight by blinding them, and he was trying to salvage it, not thinking of interrogation or other ways to get back to the leader in the heat of the moment. I think he was either trying to set the tone by having them take even more gear from us or kill another one of us (preferably our tank, the gish, because another DM had complained very loudly about how he was slaughtering villains 2 or even 3 steps above the designated CR). But, I don't know, it was a long time ago.

goto124
2015-01-21, 04:27 AM
"Well, they scream of terror, but not something that makes sense."

Okay... that cracked me up.

(Un)Inspired
2015-01-21, 11:35 AM
"Well, they scream of terror, but not something that makes sense."

Okay... that cracked me up.

Yeah that's pretty hilarious.

Honest Tiefling
2015-01-21, 12:13 PM
Ah yes. I too, when confronted with people who will kill me if I do not give them information, often resort to singing the song of my people: screaming like a howler monkey.

Segev
2015-01-21, 01:50 PM
Ah yes. I too, when confronted with people who will kill me if I do not give them information, often resort to singing the song of my people: screaming like a howler monkey.

Could be worse. The 17th level necromancer's response is also a scream. Well, more a wail. Of the banshee.

GoblinGilmartin
2015-01-22, 09:18 AM
I've just remembered a story to add to this thread.

My first experience with Skype games, and my first experience being DMed in VtM.

The Storyteller, besides running it like D&D but with vampires (he completely skipped over feeding at the beginning of every session). He would include celebrity cameos. And then he was SUPRISED when I decided "Yes, Christopher Walken DOES need to be embraced into the Malkavians".

Don't include throwaway jokes that you can't cash...

Anonymouswizard
2015-01-22, 10:36 AM
I've just remembered a story to add to this thread.

My first experience with Skype games, and my first experience being DMed in VtM.

The Storyteller, besides running it like D&D but with vampires (he completely skipped over feeding at the beginning of every session). He would include celebrity cameos. And then he was SUPRISED when I decided "Yes, Christopher Walken DOES need to be embraced into the Malkavians".

Don't include throwaway jokes that you can't cash...

Currently running a game of Vampire the Masquerade. Last session I asked all my players to give me a description of their houses, and the Giovanni immediately pick the house next to where Sir Ian McKellen lives. I had her roll 1d10, and consulted the following table:

rollresult
1-9Celebrity does not live at that house in-universe
10Celebrity does not live in that area in-universe

She rolled a 1, and we avoided both me having to pretend to be a celebrity and a 14th generation Giovanni Gandalf running around (actually, I have an urge to get him embraced as a Malkavian and Christopher Lee embraced as a Tzimisce...).

But I don't see how anyone would think a celebrity cameo would be a good idea in a game of vampire, as someone will want to embrace them, probably the Malkavian or Toreador. Or why anybody would gloss over feeding, it's become the done think among my group to specify how you're hunting and what kind of prey you seek in order to retain your full abilities during the session, or just to get drunk.

Togath
2015-01-22, 08:11 PM
My worst gm was in an online game a few months ago.
It started normally enough, though it was a little hard to contact him.
He was very open to unusual races and third party classes, letting me build my own race of insect winged human sized fey(which matters to this story), and letting me play a warlord (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/path-of-war)(basicially a pf adapted warblade/bard fusion, which again matters to this story)

The plot was present as a fairly normal one, with us escorting a caravan through a desert.
I ended up playing a neutral good "faerie" warlord, amidst a party of two mages, a ranger, and (iirc) a Dhampir swordsman of some sort.
The first session seemed normal enough, he were walking through a desert and saw a tent on the horizon, manned by drow and paper golems.
It was when we walked into an ambush by giant scorpions that the first issue happened, the gm had apparently planned to use a weird partial round system, essentially splitting turns in two(he never did answer how full round actions would work...).
Now, I had come into this assuming a normal pf campaign, since he made no mention of using a custom combat system, and me and the other players pointed out that it was unorthodox, and that he hadn't explained how certain action types would work. He eventually got us to try it... And it didn't work well, combat was very very messy.
After a several hour slog we defeated the scorpions(the gm was a little miffed at me trying to avoid them via my flight...), discovering that the gm used homebrewed fumble rules(he said he knew it was an optional rule, but had figured he didn't need to say he used them, for some reason).
The first session closed here, with us investigating the drow's tent, and finding out they were in search of bounties.

The next session started with me attacking one of the drow showing us the bounties... One of them for the (as described by the gm) "kind" elderly camel herder. Given that he had showed nothing but kindness, I assumed the drow might be up to something(and they were, you know, drow, and the gm had refused to say if they were commonly good or not here). I did use nonlethal damage, since I thought it might be a good idea to question them...
And here's where it starts to twist into my worst campaign ever.
The rest of the party refused to take them alive, even torturing them(and the "kind" camel herder joined in).
One of the party even started to eat one of the drow alive.
No, I'm not kidding.
Somehow the gm couldn't see how this was messed up/gross/all around bad.
I tried to have my character stop him by attacking, but he kept torturing and eating the drow, even offering drow bits to the other players(who saw nothing wrong with him or the camel herder).
At least at first the gm let me try to knock out the cannibal party member, but the group quickly got angry at me using one of my maneuvers repeatedly, asking how many time per day I could use it(the gm was the main one asking...)... Despite them having all ok'd Path of War(it's ToB, but PF).
I answered "once per encounter, but I can refresh it through certain actions or waiting"... Which made them flip out.
After a long argument, I quit to session and campaign.

I still haven't a clue what happened... But I'm glad I've had better luck since then.

Ravian
2015-01-22, 11:24 PM
...

I still haven't a clue what happened... But I'm glad I've had better luck since then.

God I hate those parties that act more like the monsters than the actual monsters. It gets to the point where dnd parody comics like Goblins aren't even innacurate.

Marlowe
2015-01-22, 11:45 PM
The Storyteller, besides running it like D&D but with vampires (he completely skipped over feeding at the beginning of every session). He would include celebrity cameos. And then he was SUPRISED when I decided "Yes, Christopher Walken DOES need to be embraced into the Malkavians".

Don't include throwaway jokes that you can't cash...

What a marvelous opportunity missed.

Surely Christopher Walken already is a vampire, and significantly more powerful than the party. He could have had Chris Walken as his surprise BBEG, and he missed it.

Kid Jake
2015-01-23, 12:00 AM
What a marvelous opportunity missed.

Surely Christopher Walken already is a vampire, and significantly more powerful than the party. He could have had Chris Walken as his surprise BBEG, and he missed it.

I had a player that all but begged me to let him play Nicholas Cage as a vampire when we started our Requiem game. His hope was to start out in ancient Rome and then follow the character until present day where he would finally change his name and go to Hollywood just to screw with the other players' heads.

Sir Chuckles
2015-01-23, 01:08 AM
What a marvelous opportunity missed.

Surely Christopher Walken already is a vampire, and significantly more powerful than the party. He could have had Chris Walken as his surprise BBEG, and he missed it.

I actually homebrewed a "God of Gambling", or more specifically the creator and holder of the Deck of Many Things, as a minor deity in one campaign. When the players asked for a physical description, I decided that Mr. Walken was now part of the D&D pantheon.

Named him John. Two campaigns later, we had a Cleric of John/Fortune's Friend tag teaming with a Beguiler/Fatespinner. Good times.

LooseCannoneer
2015-01-23, 02:07 AM
I had this DM who was a bit Elf Master race-y. Our party consisted of a human sorcerer (me), a dwarven fighter, and the metagamer played a elf ranger. Most combat went as follows:

Fighter: I swing my axe at it. 24.
DM: You miss.
Ranger: I fire an arrow at it. 18.
DM: The arrow pierces its neck, causing it to die quickly.

Then the DM decided that all magic items anyone produced were either quivers or bows.

ComaVision
2015-01-23, 11:01 AM
...

Drives me nuts when DM's approve things they don't understand, then get angry at their result.

Ceiling_Squid
2015-01-23, 06:01 PM
Drives me nuts when DM's approve things they don't understand, then get angry at their result.

Yup. Granted, a DM can regret his approval if he initially misunderstood something, but at that point they have to honestly and calmly talk to the player about an unforseen issue, not start raging about it.

But this DM was apparently okay with cannibal torture, so...probably can't expect a non-ragey response out of him.

"I'm sorry, Mr. DM, I didn't realize that the Reavers were the true heroes of Firefly."

Those players creep me right out.

YossarianLives
2015-01-24, 12:41 PM
I had this DM who was a bit Elf Master race-y. Our party consisted of a human sorcerer (me), a dwarven fighter, and the metagamer played a elf ranger. Most combat went as follows:

Fighter: I swing my axe at it. 24.
DM: You miss.
Ranger: I fire an arrow at it. 18.
DM: The arrow pierces its neck, causing it to die quickly.

Then the DM decided that all magic items anyone produced were either quivers or bows.
Man, that really sucks. I'm so sorry you had to deal with an idiot like that.

LooseCannoneer
2015-01-24, 01:49 PM
Man, that really sucks. I'm so sorry you had to deal with an idiot like that.

When he was a player, he would only play an elf. The first character he played could only be described as elf Hitler. I'm not kidding. He tried to build concentration camps before the paladin decided he was irredeemable. He moved on to elven Stalin.

To be honest, I don't know what we were thinking:
1) Letting him DM.
2) Not all playing elves.

Togath
2015-01-25, 04:14 PM
Another tale;

It was a pbp naruto-themed game a few years ago(using narutod20 for the system)
I decided on a wood element(very uncommon, but not especially strong, and it only actually gives a benefit once you hit about 8th level, out of 15) assassin/summoner-type(not complimentary themes) character.
It started normally enough, my character was at his part time job at a tea shop when he received a message that he was requested for what should have been an easy mission, retrieving a fugitive alongside an experienced ninja and another trainee.
We arrived to see him(he was basically Uchiha Itachi) engaged in battle with the ninja we were sent to help(some sort of not quite dead, not quite living, not quite a golem puppet oriented character).
I somehow got it in my head that the "definitely not Itachi" character was actually a good guy(because how could the gm really be bad enough to directly copy a character from the manga/anime?), and tried to fight the ninja I had been sent aside in order to help him(because she seemed insane and cruel).
We succeeded, and moved back to the city...
Where I promptly found out he was evil(I joined late-ish in the campaign, so I didn't know he was the BBEG) when he started slaughtering citizens instantly via gm fiat.
He outran us, and when we got to he building he was heading to, we found his super powerful npcs allies fighting similarly powerful guards. I tried to run past them, assuming they were distracted, only to be nearly one shotted(thankfully, I had a super high con[stats worked the same as in dnd and pf]) by them.
After being dragged from the city, we time skipped three years(during which I couldn't interfere with matters because railroading).

Three years later, my character had been exiled from the clan he tried joining during the timeskip, due to treason(I had thought that the princess of the clan had assassinated the leader, and I had apparently missed a clue on one of my cases[an npc said that a person, probably male--the npc giving the mission hadn't gotten a good look--had been doing shady things, and I had assumed it was a shady seeming female npc because she fit the description, and the person had said they hadn't gotten a good look], and tried to break into the palace to look for what happened to the leader of the clan).

My character then became a grave robber during the massive war that happened in the timeskip, and eventually got a job at the tea shop run by the guy who had owned the other tea shop my character worked at, and rejoined with the group a few in-game months later to try to stop the final villain(who planned to do something involving demons and the moon and weird eye magic).
After having two party members dye due to the enemies being super over powered, we reached the final boss battle...
And the gm ended the campaign, and started a new one, without letting us actually play the boss battle, since he didn't feel like running the campaign any more.

Still, it wasn't all bad~
I got one of my favorite characters out of it, the inept summoner Keita, and his companion; Lizard.

Anxe
2015-01-25, 06:55 PM
At least the OPness fits the Naruto world?

Togath
2015-01-25, 07:00 PM
I suppose that's one way to look at it~

I've never been quite sure if it was really a bad gm, or if it was just a quirky campaign.

Sir Chuckles
2015-01-25, 07:47 PM
Judging by the actions and reactions by the DM, I'mma go with both.

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-02, 11:18 AM
I'm not gonna tell y'all about my worst GM, because I'd be nearly inarticulate with rage about halfway through.

But I am gonna tell you about one of the worst GMs I ever gamed with.

Disclaimer: He was a bad GM (and had some bad habits as a player too), but he was a respectful roommate and a helpful person in general, so I don't have much ill will toward him.

Now, first off, he didn't have a head for mechanics; he actually had, at one point, picked up a stack of adventures on the cheap side and tried to run one for me as a solo 3.5 game without realizing that they were 4e modules, so we started having trouble within about ten minutes.

Second, he didn't have a head for improvisation; if he was working with a module and we did something he didn't expect or wasn't covered in the module, he'd try and say, "You can't do that."

Third, he didn't have a head for "how much information to give PCs," so he defaulted frequently to keeping them utterly in the dark.

Now, I only have these details secondhand; he'd wanted to run a low-ish-level 3.5 game, and several people I gamed with joined, but I was focusing on a different game at the time, so I didn't opt in. I want to say it was six or eight players, but it was years ago, so I may be misremembering; either way, it was more than enough people, so his decision to have a Gnomish rogue DMPC in the party was pretty blatantly him wanting to eat his cake and have it too. He wasn't as bad as some of the DMs in this thread, though - the rogue was the same level as any other PC and, while a bit obsessed with trickery and decks of cards, wasn't a blatant back-stabber. I can't say how things went early on (because I don't know), but apparently tensions rose, and came to a head when a few sessions in, Olidammara himself, as in "the trickster god, the Laughing Rogue," showed up in-person to give the PCs a Deck of Many Things.

Did I say "give?" I meant "make them draw from." Apparently the Cleric, who worshipped a different god, objected for some very understandable reasons (worshipping a god opposed to Olidammara on the Law/Chaos divide, Olidammara's a trickster, it's a gorram Deck of Many Things), and the DM told him flat-out that he was going to do it. Also the DMPC rogue decided to draw multiple times, and unfortunately for the other PCs, he wasn't sucked into oblivion or anything. :smallsigh:

Anyway, as soon as that session was over, his players started approaching me; they told me how bad things were getting. They had unanimously voted him out of the DM chair, and had asked me if I was okay taking over.

Naturally, when the former-DM heard that I was going to be running a game for the others, he asked if he could bring in his gnome. And then persuaded the rest of the players to ask if we could keep the "good" results from the Deck of Many Things in my game. Then asked if he could play the fourth-level Fighter he drew from the Deck in addition to the rogue, instead of having me NPC him. :smallsigh:

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-02, 11:24 AM
Now I really want to hear about your worst DM.

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-02, 11:33 AM
Sadly, that'll have to wait for another day.

I'll say this, though - he was an unpleasant enough person that in my first game with him, I vowed to myself that I'd never game with him again (a promise that was sadly forgotten).

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-02, 11:38 AM
Sadly, that'll have to wait for another day.

I'll say this, though - he was an unpleasant enough person that in my first game with him, I vowed to myself that I'd never game with him again (a promise that was sadly forgotten).

You're taunting me with what sounds like an amazing story.

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-02, 12:30 PM
You're taunting me with what sounds like an amazing story.He wasn't even the GM in that one. :smallsigh:

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-02, 01:08 PM
He wasn't even the GM in that one. :smallsigh:

So you have multiple stories of how awful this dude is? You're killing me.

Knaight
2015-02-02, 01:55 PM
Sadly, that'll have to wait for another day.

I'll say this, though - he was an unpleasant enough person that in my first game with him, I vowed to myself that I'd never game with him again (a promise that was sadly forgotten).

This sounds like a fun story. The other GM sounded pretty impressively inept, and this promises to be worse.

As for me, the worst I've had was a GM who totally ignored character abilities. Characters would be made, you'd roll for things, and the unmodified dice roll would be taken into consideration and interpreted without going through the character first, and with no attention to the rules. Said GM also was improvising, and really, really bad at doing so.

Clearly I've been lucky, as that's hardly a horror story.

Ceiling_Squid
2015-02-02, 06:16 PM
I should consider myself lucky. My bad GMs bore me to tears rather than infuriate me.

One guy had us on a semi-unusual world, where there were supposedly massive floating continents that formed a secondary overworld, two suns, and no nighttime.

Why do I say supposedly? Well, I didn't find out until after the campaign ended, and another player told me about it. I joined in to fill a slot about halfway through, and never got brought up to speed. Six levels with these guys on some grand military campaign (by which I mean we all played second fiddle to a player who played the heroic general with ambitions of kingship, and who did all the talking with important NPCs), as we went from generic railroady battle to generic dungeon crawl over and over again, and these major world details never came up once.

Maybe they were a mentioned footnote prior to when I joined the game, but you'd think those odd world features would come up in descriptions, or influence the logistics of war in some way (we were based off one of these floating islands, not that I knew at the time). The DM didn't give me much of a setting introduction, if any.

Nothing else about this campaign world even sticks out in the mind anymore. Well, except maybe the blasted magical wasteland on one of the continents, but we never actually went there, only heard about it secondhand from our NPC scouts and diplomats.

My character was an historian, an elven bard who concerned himself with chronicling events, and who went along with the human general as a sort of embedded biographer (since there was no point trying to share spotlight...upon joining the group, I quickly saw who the real main character was). At the end of it, my bard was forcibly retired, and I was told exactly by the GM what happened to my character (became a court orator or somesuch), with hardly any input.

When it came time to play the followup epic campaign with new characters, I turned him down and left the group.

I probably shouldn't complain, since I was a latecomer to the game, but it started to feel like a waste of my time. Since then, I've got little patience for DMs who can't describe a scene to save their lives, and who play favorites with a single character over all others.

It was such a lifeless experience, you could feel the table slump in boredom a little between endless combat turns and hours-long shopping trips back at our home city. We got endlessy bogged down.

All in all, not too bad compared to most DMs on this list. So I am lucky in this regard.

Sith_Happens
2015-02-02, 07:17 PM
So I got a small bit of the way into catching up on the last month of this thread before having to go someplace in a few minutes (EDIT: And subsequently came back and finished said catching up) and feel like responding to something that is now really old (EDIT: Make that a lot of somethings of varying oldness):


I don't know if this is a typical White Wolf thing, but the ST insisted on granting us experience points based on what we had learned. I was not aware of this rule when I made her, so her intelligence was...Bad. So of course, she never learned anything and I think I got a grand total of 1 EXP for several sessions while others were sometimes getting 2-3. I know the system isn't made for everyone to be equal, but I sure wish I had known that.

Here's how gaining experience points normally works in New World of Darkness First Edition*:


1 point — Automatic. Each player gets one point for participating in a chapter.
1 point — Learning Curve. Ask the player what his character learned during the chapter’s events. If you agree with his response, award his character one point.
1 point — Roleplaying. The player did a good job of portraying his character, either entertainingly, appropriately, or both. If he veered too far from his character’s concept, he might not deserve this reward, but don’t be stingy here. Indeed, superlative roleplaying might be worth two points.
1 point — Heroism. Characters who rise to the occasion with truly heroic actions or feats of survival and sheer persistence deserve a point. Do not reward characters who act in stupid or suicidal ways just so they can gain the accolades of the hero.

1 point — Success. The characters achieved all or part of their goals.
1 point — Danger. The characters survived against harsh odds and grave dangers.
1 point — Wisdom. The player, and thus his character, devised a brilliant plan or came up with a spontaneous solution that enabled the group to survive or succeed when it might have failed.

If you want the characters to advance in talent more quickly, feel free to award extra points to get them to the desired level of competence.

So you should have been earning at least 1 EXP per session in theory and 2 in practice (since the requirement for the second one is essentially "Did you refrain from doing anything severely out-of-character?"). As explained in a more timely fashion than this post, "Learning Curve" is also pretty loose. And if your character was the only one with much of the way in combat skills then that should have more or less ensured you the "Heroism" point after any session in which there was a significant fight.

In short, yes, you were being unfairly shortchanged big time.

* Second Edition (which the free God Machine Rules Update and all books published after it are officially called now) changes the experience system nearly completely.

EDIT: Holy quote backlog, Batman!


OK, pages from it, but I actually got an idea from Beige's wall of text that sounds kind of neat for a puzzle,
The PC are sent to get help from the only truly immortal human. They find him in tower filled, and I mean filled, with books. Reading each one, reveals cramped hand writing describing someone's life story in methodical detail. Each book ends with 'And then he wrote this book'. In fact, it is repeated over and over, occasionally interspersed with 'And then winter came', or 'A sparrow flew into the tower' with what happened then before returning to 'And then he wrote this book', There will probably be some combat with things you'd expect to find in a tower of books, but eventually you come to a room with a man with a long, long beard and hair, trailing over his back and the desk in front of him. His wizened, pale face darts between one book filled with the same cramped handwriting and a half filled volume, while an ink-stained hand hurriedly copies the events from one book to the other.
The idea is to distract him while they write an edit into the copying book to say he helps, (the writing is not magic, though the ink pot is, giving an eternal supply of ink) switch it for an otherwise blank book found along the way saying that he helps them, Heck, they could just erase the whole book being copied from, and he'd stare there blankly, almost a blank slate until they tell them what they need) and how they distract him is up to the players. It could be combat, it could be a really good slight of hand check, it could be some kind of display of magic or performance, it could be a conversation. Thoughts, Playground?

The question is what someone in that sort of condition could possibly help you with, besides telling you how to find the book whose contents you're actually there for, of course.


Given that she expected the Wizard to throw MM and Fireball, it makes sense that she sees them as "blasters." Not that what she did was right (it wasn't), but I can see where she was coming from.

From what I've heard of 4e it is in fact still possible to make a Wizard good at blasting if you specifically build for it, it's just that that involves compromising your ability to turn enemies into yo-yos and if I ever hear someone say that they're deliberately passing up the chance to turn enemies into yo-yos I will assume they're lying.:smallwink:


[Snip]

Just as an aside, I read on Ynetnews a while back that the IDF will more or less blacklist you from ever having a decent security clearance if they find out you've ever played D&D, because it's apparently possible for one of the most cutting-edge militaries on the planet to have higher-ups who see tabletop gaming the same way that certain segments of the US did in the 70's. Don't know how relevant that is to you specifically, but I felt like pointing it out (and am pretty sure that doing so is within forum rules, it is currently 3 AM where I am though so I might be wrong).


This was their fifth time running this exact campaign.

Congratulations, sir, this sentence right here is officially the single weirdest thing I've ever read.


Now I'm imagining a player, provoked beyond all endurance by terrible GM-ing, shouting "But this test is STUPID!" and then the GM and other players all applaud him and say "That was the test!" and then they all gamed happily ever after.

This, on the other hand, is the single thing I've ever read that most makes me think "There is something incredibly wrong with this at a deep, barely conscious level but damned if I can figure out what it is."


As long as we're making anime references, ever seen Higurashi? It's slightly more relevant...

Personally I'm thinking more along the lines of the Endless Eight.


"If you can think about it, it's someone's fetish"

Ps: Which brings us to the sorta-disturbing-conclusion that someone not only likes those godawful games but they are even one's fetish.

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/288/434/f18.jpg


I'm just amused by the image of a gang of thugs somehow all thinking to themselves that 'Well, this is a bit unpleasant. I'm going home'. They all calmly shuffle away from the battle without bonking into each other, without even saying anything to either the people they were hired to kill or each other.

*cue Yakety Sax*


Ah yes. I too, when confronted with people who will kill me if I do not give them information, often resort to singing the song of my people: screaming like a howler monkey.

Don't mock, the Fighter in one of my current parties is just such a person (strictly in-character, thankfully).


"Yes, Christopher Walken DOES need to be embraced into the Malkavians".

http://i0.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/newsfeed/000/550/771/7ac.jpg


I had a player that all but begged me to let him play Nicholas Cage as a vampire when we started our Requiem game. His hope was to start out in ancient Rome and then follow the character until present day where he would finally change his name and go to Hollywood just to screw with the other players' heads.

Does this player also happen to be in control of an ill-tempered hydrokinetic?:smallwink:


I decided on a wood element(very uncommon

Read: Requiring you to have been grafted with the cell lineage of a specific historical figure.


You're taunting me with what sounds like an amazing story.


So you have multiple stories of how awful this dude is? You're killing me.

My sentiments exactly.:smalltongue:

Loxagn
2015-02-03, 04:54 PM
I've got one. It by and large stands out as the worst moment of my gaming career.

We were all new to tabletops, and had been playing in a 4E campaign for the past several months. The party was quite large (we had seven or eight in total depending on attendance) so one of the DMs appointed a 'co-DM' to help pick up the slack. Said co-DM had more than a few curious quirks, and it became quickly apparent that he liked the spotlight a little too much as he had an eladrin ranger who was literally a princess that he liked to play in a decidedly creepy manner. This should've been our first warning sign, but we were all teenagers and had no idea what we were doing.

The real issue came when we decided to host a Halloween party. Everybody was psyched to have a horror-based one-shot, and the co-DM volunteered to run it, saying he had some pretty good ideas.
So we made our characters, myself creating a female cleric of the 'smite them with holy light' variety. Very devout follower of Pelor, various vows tying her to her power. I was expecting her to be challenged by horrifying, potentially lovecraftian situations. What I was not, however, expecting, was for Co-DM to have an Epic 3.5 Wizard (yes, it was specified to be a 3.5 Wizard. We were level 10.) appear out of the blue and kidnap us before dragging the party on a tour of the 'Plane of Lust' from the Book of Blue Magic.

Co-DM proceeded to talk at length about various 'perverse' things the 'encounters' were doing to our characters, while the rest of us looked on in mute horror. I'm not sure why nobody spoke up until we were a solid hour into this. For obvious reasons, I won't go into detail about what was described, but by the end of the hour we asked to take a break, and I think everyone felt too awkward to actually go back to the table. The party ended early, mostly because nobody was really in the mood for it anymore. We later brought it up with the first DM, who was shocked and appalled at what had happened (he'd had to miss the party for family reasons). Co-DM was asked to leave the group, and we haven't actually heard from him since.

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-03, 05:25 PM
-Another story of a rape enthusiastic DM-

Reading some of the posts on this and the Worst Players thread confuses me to no end.

I just don't understand. The purpose of a game is to provide fun. D&D is a game. D&D should provide fun. I can't comprehend how someone could find it fun to spend an hour describing someone's character getting raped to them. I keep involuntarily shaking me head even as I write this.

How can someone reach the conclusion that other people will enjoy hearing about their character being raped.

What on earth is the appeal?

EDIT: also, you have my sympathy Loxagn. That sounds like it sucked tremendously.

Dycize
2015-02-03, 05:34 PM
Because RPG players are all kindred souls that share the same interests, including various kinks and their willingness to talk about it in the open, duh!

At least he succeeded at one thing : horrifying you on Halloween.
Too bad it had to happen... That way.

Loxagn
2015-02-03, 06:01 PM
That sounds like it sucked tremendously.

You've hit the nail on the head, there.

Of course, I've also been a fairly terrible DM, although I think most of it was due to inexperience. The first game I ever ran was 3.5. I started the party at level 1, with plans to take them all the way to 20 (did not realize what an undertaking that was going to be). Of course, I also had this BBEG lady who was this gestalted level 20 abomination because I wanted to be a threat. Psion||Wizard 20. The campaign was plagued with issues from the start because I made 'clever' puzzles based a lot of the time on silly video game logic. Eventually ended when I put the BBEG in front of them with the express purpose of having her gloat and start rampaging around. I also took on way too complicated a premise involving time-travel shenanigans and it was just a big, fat, mess. I regret it tremendously. Thankfully I can take that as a learning experience, and am told that the game I'm currently running is genuinely fun.

Ravian
2015-02-04, 03:32 AM
How can someone reach the conclusion that other people will enjoy hearing about their character being raped.

What on earth is the appeal?



It's generally not that they want others to enjoy it, it's because they enjoy it and they expect others to play along because it's presented in the context of a normal game.

Lots of people see Role-playing in general as a sort of power-trip, where they can go about their fantasies without fear of consequences. On it's own this mindset isn't necessarily a bad thing. (That's what escapism is essentially. The Table-top gaming industry wouldn't exist without people wanting to pretend to be a person with capabilities beyond their own.)

Lots of people can get carried away with this sort of thing. The Worst Player's thread is made of this kind of overload. It's where you get all kinds of self-centered *******s that want to do what they want to do without consideration for the people around them. (This is also pretty central to the concept of Role-playing games, a single person going through their fantasy unrestricted is a daydream, add in more people though and you're going to need some form of arbitration (typically rules) or people are going to start stepping on each others toes.)

One of the worst problems that occurs is when this overboard escapism goes into the hands of the GM who has to arbitrate the situation. If they are entirely committed to their own enjoyment, than the other players cease to matter, they might as well be interesting victims for a capricious God, at least as far as the GM is concerned.

In essence, this kind of behavior occurs when people prioritize their own enjoyment over others. They don't think that the description of another's character being raped would be fun, they likely didn't think about it all outside the context of their own enjoyment. At best they might have hoped that the player would simply ignore the fact that they had invested a part of him or herself in the character and enjoy it as an observer, much like he himself was doing.

It's not a misconception that Role-playing rape would be enjoyable for them, so much as it represented the ability for them to control their environment. That's why it's often considered a form of sexual assault. (The only difference is that the victim is separated from the abuse by a thin line dividing character and player. But since effective Role-playing actively encouraging a person to cross that line, it becomes an even more transparent division.)

Sliver
2015-02-04, 05:36 AM
Just as an aside, I read on Ynetnews a while back that the IDF will more or less blacklist you from ever having a decent security clearance if they find out you've ever played D&D, because it's apparently possible for one of the most cutting-edge militaries on the planet to have higher-ups who see tabletop gaming the same way that certain segments of the US did in the 70's. Don't know how relevant that is to you specifically, but I felt like pointing it out (and am pretty sure that doing so is within forum rules, it is currently 3 AM where I am though so I might be wrong).

Well, that would be wrong... As part of my process in the IDF, I was interviewed for a program that would put me in the position of an officer. I told the interviewer about me playing D&D and she was very curious and interested, and I passed that part of the process. Besides, I had a moderately high security clearance while actually serving, and me and a bunch of others serving together played D&D a few times, while at the base.

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-04, 11:30 AM
So you have multiple stories of how awful this dude is? You're killing me.

You're taunting me with what sounds like an amazing story.

My sentiments exactly.:smalltongue:Okay, fine.

It was a Star Wars Saga Edition game; my character was a Twi'lek Crime Lord who focused on persuasion and deception.


Now, lemme interrupt my little narrative to tell you guys something... to be honest, I haven't liked [this guy] for a long time. The guy swears like he got them on sale somewhere, and does it loudly enough to make truck horns jealous. He's one of the worst kinds of rules-lawyers, where he is willing to look up any rule that will give him an advantage, only to conveniently forget about those that are problematic (or at least try and word them in a way as to totally twist the intents). Not to mention the fact that he's spent a good portion of the session on his laptop, looking at humorous pictures on the Internet...

[He] starts loudly berating us for our choice of actions. [That guy] then starts making [Jedi PC]'s decisions for him, telling [Jedi PC]'s player and [GM] exactly what [Jedi PC] was going to do...

When we get out of the situation, [his foul-mouthed, chain-smoking character] loudly berates us for our choice of actions, and says that [my PC] was probably too busy "looking at his nails" to contribute. [His character] essentially proposes that we use a ton of thermal detonators and the hole in the ceiling to solve our lizard problem, and does so, leaving the area a giant crater.

We encounter a Dark Jedi that was a recurring villain for us as we proceed deeper. We fight her for a while, with her tossing off Force Lightning and lightsaber tricks, but she's looking worse for it than we are.


Once again I feel I must break narrative.

I'm never letting [that guy] into any of the games I'm GMing. I made that mistake once with the last half of one of my games last year, and I still regret it.

I declare to [GM] that [my PC] will attempt to get her to back down with a Persuasion check. IMMEDIATELY [that guy] calls foul, declaring that there's no way in the rules I could do such a thing. When I point-by-point prove him wrong, he counters with, "But it's (censored) STAR WARS. It's not about (censored) TALKING. You (censored) SHOOT things or slice its (censored) off with a (censored) lightsaber. If you built a (censored) character for (censored) TALKING to people, YOU'RE DOING IT WRONG."

That REALLY ticked me off. EVEN if he was right about the power of persuasion having no place in the Star Wars universe (which he wasn't, IMO ), he was entirely in the wrong for saying that to me.

Keeping my temper, I countered with, "So, Luke saying that he still believed there was good in Vader had no impact on Vader's later actions in Return of the Jedi?" [that guy] continues to swear and complain about how you shouldn't be able to use social skill checks in combat (although if you really shouldn't be able to, then why does the book bother telling you what kind of action the check is?).

Luckily, the GM agreed with me, and when [my PC] levelled his blaster pistol at the Dark Jedi and told her to get steppin' (and his Persuasion check beat her Will Defense by a whopping 20 points), she beat a hasty retreat.

That didn't stop him from spending the rest of the session grumbling at me. I wish that was where it had ended.

Maybe on the bus ride to work I'll write up a post about how we spent three months in a Vampire game with his 2000+ XP GMPC.

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-04, 11:36 AM
Okay, fine.

It was a Star Wars Saga Edition game; my character was a Twi'lek Crime Lord who focused on persuasion and deception.



We encounter a Dark Jedi that was a recurring villain for us as we proceed deeper. We fight her for a while, with her tossing off Force Lightning and lightsaber tricks, but she's looking worse for it than we are.



That didn't stop him from spending the rest of the session grumbling at me. I wish that was where it had ended.

Maybe on the bus ride to work I'll write up a post about how we spent three months in a Vampire game with his 2000+ XP GMPC.

You should have bit him really hard and told him that you were just LARPing.

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-04, 11:45 AM
You should have bit him really hard and told him that you were just LARPing.One of the Big Rules in vampire LARPing is "no touching," actually.

Diachronos
2015-02-04, 11:48 AM
One of the Big Rules in vampire LARPing is "no touching," actually.

Who says it's Vampire LARPing?

Arcades
2015-02-04, 11:50 AM
The sad fact of the matter is, you are essentially right for all the right reasons. The only difference is that where I live, "basements" don't exist (in fact, due in large part to the past history of hurricanes, tsunamis, and constant flash flooding, residences atop entire sections of the island are on stilts).



Now I'm curious... may I ask you where are you from?

As for the worst DM I've ever had... I was a pretty bad DM when I was 14-16, but I think that's to be expected. i got better, though.

Almost 1/2 of my gaming acquaintance (I've got a lot of them) have tried dming, and most of their attempts have been awful, thanks to railroading, dmpcs, and very stupid rules interpretation, but they aren't really horror dms.

The only one of them worthy of this thread is a guy that, while being a pretty bad dm, is also a nazi. We played in his room which is decorated with swastikas and SS flags. Awkward (for the two session I played before GTFO).

Laughingmanlol
2015-02-04, 01:06 PM
Awkward (for the two session I played before GTFO).

What, so the first session in the Führerbunker didn't put you off attending the next time? :P

Arcades
2015-02-04, 01:40 PM
What, so the first session in the Führerbunker didn't put you off attending the next time? :P

Problem was that both DM and the players were old acquaintances of mine and they really wanted to play together like the "old times" (of course, during the old times we were 16 and the DM guy didn't have swastikas in his room...).
As soon as I could I made up an excuse and left for good (the group disbanded a week or two later anyway).

Ceiling_Squid
2015-02-04, 01:51 PM
What, so the first session in the Führerbunker didn't put you off attending the next time? :P

Maybe he thought the guy was displaying war trophies taken from the Nazis.

Or perhaps he was a really big fan of Hugo Boss' fine uniform designs.

And perhaps the mustache was just because he was a Charlie Chaplin enthusiast?

I smell a comedy sketch coming on. :)

Wacky hijinks ensue in this week's episode, "Hitler Is My Dungeon Master!"

Edit: Not to make light of it, of course. It must have been incredibly awkward at the time, Arcades. Especially seeing an old acquaintance go so far off the deep end.

Kid Jake
2015-02-04, 02:05 PM
Does this player also happen to be in control of an ill-tempered hydrokinetic?:smallwink:

Yep. He always comes up with the greatest concepts.

Solaris
2015-02-04, 05:57 PM
Well, that would be wrong... As part of my process in the IDF, I was interviewed for a program that would put me in the position of an officer. I told the interviewer about me playing D&D and she was very curious and interested, and I passed that part of the process. Besides, I had a moderately high security clearance while actually serving, and me and a bunch of others serving together played D&D a few times, while at the base.

I'd heard they were doing it for a while back in the '80s-'90s, then realized how incredibly stupid it was.

I know the US military doesn't have a problem with D&D. I was the only person at the game I DMed in Kuwait who didn't have a TS-SCI Clearance.

Arcades
2015-02-04, 06:41 PM
Maybe he thought the guy was displaying war trophies taken from the Nazis.

Or perhaps he was a really big fan of Hugo Boss' fine uniform designs.

And perhaps the mustache was just because he was a Charlie Chaplin enthusiast?

I smell a comedy sketch coming on. :)

Wacky hijinks ensue in this week's episode, "Hitler Is My Dungeon Master!"

Edit: Not to make light of it, of course. It must have been incredibly awkward at the time, Arcades. Especially seeing an old acquaintance go so far off the deep end.

No problem, the jokes were actually quite funny =P

Milo v3
2015-02-04, 09:45 PM
Now I'm curious... may I ask you where are you from?

Sounds like Queensland Australia if not for the fact they said hurricanes rather than cyclones.

Either way, I'm lucky that the worst GM I've had was really minor. It was a Pokemon tournament game, and my assigned opponent was Bugsy the Gym Leader, but then out of nowhere the GM changed it to a rock type gym leader without telling me at all. So I sent out a flying type believing it would give a type advantage only finding out my opponent was swapped when suddenly they sent out a tyranitar, which he then effortlessly one-hit K.O.'d my pokemon, caused it to fall into lava, and permanently die.

Sith_Happens
2015-02-04, 10:32 PM
Maybe on the bus ride to work I'll write up a post about how we spent three months in a Vampire game with his 2000+ XP GMPC.

...There are literally not enough things in the game to spend nearly that much XP on in the first place.:smalleek:

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-04, 10:45 PM
...There are literally not enough things in the game to spend nearly that much XP on in the first place.:smalleek:There are when you diablerize your way to sixth generation, get access to the Salubri healing Discipline, Tzimisce fleshcrafting, Tremere thaumaturgy, and Akashic Brotherhood martial arts, then find a daiklave and attain Golconda (in spite of not being on the Path of Humanity), and get to go walking 'round in the sunlight.

(He claims that all of this stuff happened in-play in his years of previous Vampire gaming; I don't particularly care, orbiting half the plots in the city 'round him made the character insufferable.)

Cazero
2015-02-05, 12:48 AM
There are when you diablerize your way to sixth generation, get access to the Salubri healing Discipline, Tzimisce fleshcrafting, Tremere thaumaturgy, and Akashic Brotherhood martial arts, then find a daiklave and attain Golconda (in spite of not being on the Path of Humanity), and get to go walking 'round in the sunlight.

Hu. My friend tried to diablerize his way to Tzimisce fleshcrafting, and all he got was his vampire turning into some kind of malevolent goo, an awkward talk with the ST who basically told him "yeah, Tzimisce really are that ugly inside", and the opportunity to make a new character sheet.

Dimers
2015-02-05, 10:38 PM
I'd heard they were doing it for a while back in the '80s-'90s, then realized how incredibly stupid it was.

I've heard the same general sort of thing about the Society for Creative Anachronism ... theoretically, all the officers got FBI files because of their advancement in the world's largest private army. Snopes has nothing to say on the matter.

My worst GM was a filthy man, living in a filthy house filled with unwashed clothes, greasy hairs (how to say this ... "both straight and curly"), roaches and unfinished pizza. I have no idea how he survived day-to-day because all he was ever seen to eat was cheese pizza and french fries. He was obsessed with Japanese culture and thought everything Japanese was superior to everything from the rest of the world; he tried to use games to re-enact anime and video game stuff. He had no personal social skill and not infrequently would get emotionally withdrawn from social anxiety. He wasn't entirely unskilled as a storyteller, though the stories he wanted to tell rarely had anything to do with the PCs and he tended not to recognize cues of discomfort or boredom.

I've had quite the run of good luck when it comes to GMs, really. My worst wasn't violent or boundary-crossing or untalented, just gross. Most have been dramatically better.

Togath
2015-02-06, 06:25 AM
A story of a case of bad gming I did, involving a "magical realm" kinda thing.

It start when a relatively new player(who, at the time, I had a crush on) found out about elixirs of love in 3.5 dnd.
Now... For whatever reason, I basically turned them into elixirs of lust(I later found out they were grossed out by the idea and would've preferred "elixirs of friendship")...
I then let the player buy everlasting ones(again, the player said that the idea of enslaving people with lust as weird to them, but that they had used them because they were so powerful)...

The first issue happened when they met the eldest daughter of a local shopkeeper, and decided to use a potion on her(because the player thought she was cute, and could be a fun ally to have...)
I ended up deciding she became very submissive(in the bdsm sense), and somehow convinced the player to buy a collar and leash for their new "pet"(which was really how I described her and what I had the npc call herself[the player wanted her as a good friend or sister, but not a sexual relationship, especially not one based on mind altering magic]). I eventually changed her personalty(during these events) to fit with her reaction to the potion once the player explained that the person would still have their normal personality even while affected by an elixer of love(I didn't get the hint, though looking back it was a fairly obvious one...), having the player find a collar,, a cat tail, and cat ears in her closet, as well as a large amount of clothes(many of them skimpy or lingerie...).

The second incident happened when they used one on a merchant, who I had already described as being a little bit of a pervert. He... Got much much worse once he had the potion. He offered the character money and items from his shop if she "did things" for him, and gifted her magic items up front, a moderately skimpy outfit(which I described as magically enhancing her figure while worn... yea...). The offered rewards were too good, and the character did end up doing some stuff... Though the player was grossed out a little, and eventually clarified that she wouldn't have done any stuff involving contact with him.

Incident number 3 was when part of the party(the pc mentioned above, and her dragon boyfriend, who didn't know about either of the last two events ic or ooc)captured the leader of the local faerie mafia(well, basically yakuza)...
The pc mentioned above started to interrogate the the captured faerie)who was a little bit of a self insertion character). She started fairly normal with verbal interrogation, moving onto threats... Which also didn't get very far...
So they moved onto torture... And due to various kinky reasons, I got kind of wrapped up in rping the faerie, who seemed to actually get aroused from being tortured, though she did give information to the party.

The 4th thing(and second to last) was when they were trying to decide what to do with her...
I can't remember whether it was me or the player who suggestions selling her as a slave to the perverted merchant I mentioned in part 2. I'm goign to guess it was me.
So the player took her to a clothing shop(before applying the potion) in order to get her clean clothes(her others can become dirty because of... "stuff" during the interrogation). The player asked me to come up with a pretty outfit for her... I for some reason took that to mean lingerie... Though the character did still buy the lingerie.
once at the merchant, she fed the faerie the potion... Who I had actually start humping the merchant's leg...:smallfrown:
Various things led to another and the merchant bribed the character with an absurd amount of loot if she did more stuff than last time with him and his new "pet" faerie, and even gave another gift... Enchanted(probably a little op) lingerie. The bribes were enough, and the player said yes.
We did timeskip over much of it, but the player actually had to leave for a bit after, because they felt too weird after their that event, and needed to take a short break.

And finally the 5th incident, which ended with my players talking to be after the session, and making me realize just how perverted I had twisted the campaign to be, especially when involving their character or the dragon pc, and which resulted in retconning a lot of the perverted stuff into not happening("pets" became friends, the merchant became normal, and unknowing that he was buying a mind wiped faerie, and the person selling the potions ran out of stock).
It started when they met the shop owner's younger daughter(the eldest daughter's younger sister)...
Due to wanting to rescue her from her father(since the player had found evidence that he was going to either turn her into a sentient construct, or do something out of fullmetal alchemist to her[a plot which I had actually come up with before all of the perverted stuff happened]), she fed the girl the last potion... And was disturbed when I had her ask about when she could "play" with the dragon pc...:smalleek:
The session ended there, and I realized just how out of control things got gotten when my players explained how weird things were to me.

We retconned a lot of stuff, and things are better now, but the event does make me consider myself one of the worst gms I've encountered, due to that incident.

goto124
2015-02-06, 06:49 AM
Glad to hear you learnt your mistake, and tried to fix them too :)

Ravian
2015-02-06, 11:24 AM
Yeah, so much of GMing is about understanding what works for your players, and so bad GMing is often more of a result of mis-communication than anything truly malicious. (Since it's often is difficult to seperate what's ok with you with what's ok with others)

Glad you were able to smooth things over with your players instead of ending up as the subject of a creepy DM story somewhere on the internet. :smalltongue:

Susano-wo
2015-02-06, 06:46 PM
RE Kinky dnd story: Yeah, a lot of that stuff is overboard and unnecessary if everyone isn't on board for it.



But! I call BS on the players who are using this stuff anyway trying to blame you. (some things, like not thinking to just describe to you the outfit they bought rather than asking you to come up with it) can be chocked up to player blind spots, or having experience wherein GMs got too controlling of the environment, but using the Lust Potion? AAAAALLL on them/him. Its just too powerful is about as good of an excuse as "its what my character would do."

Also, making someone a BFF/sister figure by mind controlling magic potions is still pretty creepy, even if it doesn't reach sex slave levels of creepy

Togath
2015-02-06, 07:06 PM
Does it help any that the player is chaotic neutral and the sort of person to ask about me homebrewing pregnancy related magic since they wanted to have cat(as in, catfolk)-dragons with the dragon(well, "Taninim", but it's close to a dragon) pc?

As for the mind slave thing... They did say I could have them break free, but I ended up changing the npcs personalities so they wouldn't try to escape(in all honesty, part of it was due to how much I would have had to retcon if they broke free... And I had made the original personality changes while I was still including kinky elements)...

*also, regarding the outfit, the players words were(slightly paraphrased); "they didn't really have much idea of what would look pretty, and hadn't expected me to actually go into detail about what the outfit was"

Kalmageddon
2015-02-06, 07:37 PM
Does it help any that the player is chaotic neutral and the sort of person to ask about me homebrewing pregnancy related magic since they wanted to have cat(as in, catfolk)-dragons with the dragon(well, "Taninim", but it's close to a dragon) pc?

As for the mind slave thing... They did say I could have them break free, but I ended up changing the npcs personalities so they wouldn't try to escape(in all honesty, part of it was due to how much I would have had to retcon if they broke free... And I had made the original personality changes while I was still including kinky elements)...

*also, regarding the outfit, the players words were(slightly paraphrased); "they didn't really have much idea of what would look pretty, and hadn't expected me to actually go into detail about what the outfit was"

Just out of curiosity, how old were you when you DM'd this? That could mean a lot... Otherwise... Well, I guess we all make mistakes, at least you had the guts to admit it and as far as I can tell you didn't traumatized anyone.

I... actually have a far worse experience with a kinky DM, but I'd have to be really careful and vague to tell you about what happened in that campaign, due to the very... graphic nature of it.

Togath
2015-02-06, 07:44 PM
This happened...
About three to four months ago...

And yea...
I really regret having done such a weird thing, and am doing my best to keep any of the weirdness from creeping into normal rp.

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-06, 09:31 PM
I'm with Susano-wo on this one. Yeah, that stuff is bad, especially if none of the players are even remotely interested. But to put the blame upon you because you enticed them with loot? Regardless of the loot or whatever rewards are offered,the player still has to make the conscious decision as to whether they take the reward for doing whatever deed is required.

There is nothing wrong with powerful loot or an NPC offering rewards in exchange for whatever, but the player is still the one who decided to use it or take that offer. Unless of course you forced to make that choice, or just flat out said they took the offer. Like others said, at least you've owned up to the mistake and are trying to fix it.

As for my own worst DM story, there was the case of the DM not planning anything - normally not a problem. Both her and my DM style generally revolves around not planning things too far in advance. Usually, there is a minimal plot to allow for the PCs to do what they do and be the true stars - generally some specific monsters and encounters planned, some skill challenges on hand, and the NPCs decided - but plot is minimum to account for the players never being predictable. This particular campaign was not like that. There was zero plot as far as I can tell, and two new players were picked on (well one in particular, the other got lumped together due to being a couple). I helped create these characters and put them on paper. One was a gnome oracle (heal-bot) and a half-orc barbarian (beat stick) - the gnome rode around on the half-orc's shoulders. No real backstory to them, other than she found him and healed him, and they've been together since.

Anyway, this particular dungeon was an on the spot decision to have us go crawling. No big deal, we figure. Well, like I said, nothing was planned, so there were a number of issues. Magic doors, hallways, and rooms that appeared or disappeared at random because the DM either forgot they were there after we were in a new area or decided to add them randomly. Still not a huge issue (super annoying, but we figure we can deal with it - we had no way to game otherwise at the time). Next problem: at every door - EVERY SINGLE DOOR - was a trap. Not lots of variation. Literally the same trap over and over. A pit. Sometimes with spikes, sometimes with water, and sometimes with both. The problem is the half-orc only had two skills: climb and swim. He could do neither to get out of the pits, we had to fish him out with a rope which eventually snapped. So we stop opening doors, and somehow we end up in a room with some weird combo demon-dragon-ghost-witch-thing - it's not a lich, in case your wondering. It's creating zombies out the wazoo, and so the gnome player starts to use create water - the room fills with water and the dead can't swim. We figure now we can get out, since earlier we had (unintentionally) created a big ass hole in the roof/floor of the next level. Most of us got out, except the gnome and half-orc. Apparently, he was not allowed to swim and have her her sitting on his back at the same time. We got lucky with a rope rescue for the gnome, but we had to wait for the room to keep filling up so he could swim and climb out. The game died after that session, during which the DM decided that the zombies we didn't kill got out and demolished the town (this dungeon was built into a basement??) and the bard in our group lost her home town (I forget the bard archetype that selects a town and gets powers based on it).

Personally, because I know both the DM and player closely, I think it was personal feelings effecting game play and the DM was out to get those players (why she allowed them to play when she didn't like them is beyond me). We haven't gamed with the DM since then.

I've made plenty of mistakes as GM - ask my players. Usually, it's because I give out too much loot, treasure, and XP, but I do put them against too much at times as well. I actually almost killed a player due to this two days ago.

goto124
2015-02-07, 01:23 AM
"I actually almost killed a player due to this two days ago. "

EDIT: I hope you meant 'character'. Your reply proves this though :smallbiggrin:

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-07, 01:37 AM
In this case, it was my usual luck. As a player, I roll poor. As a GM I roll excellent. I either can't do anything or I'm killing my players. Fortunately, i can at least say it was the dice rollers fault since we were using maptool, but even that seems like a feeble excuse. It wasn't a hard fight. a handful of CL1's and a surprise CL8 versus 3 level 4 pc's - If you added them up it wa something like a total challenge of CL15. Not hard at all, but challenging.

I've done worse. Often, I tend to think the encounter I put together will be easier than it is, and then the dice go way too much in my favor and so I end up almost killing them. Almost being key, since I find fudging the dice to keep the pc at lower health is dramatic and can serve the plot. I try not to kill them - though I won't hold back if they do something really stupid.

hymer
2015-02-07, 03:04 AM
a handful of CL1's and a surprise CL8 versus 3 level 4 pc's - If you added them up it wa something like a total challenge of CL15. Not hard at all, but challenging.

I don't know what system this is, but as a multiple editions D&D DM/player, this trips quite a few alarms. It could, in fact, be spectacularly unreasonable in at least two ways.

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-07, 03:13 AM
Star Wars Saga Edition is the system. Why would it be alarming?

hymer
2015-02-07, 03:31 AM
Star Wars Saga Edition is the system. Why would it be alarming?

Ah, much less problematic then, especially assuming the opponents were not heroic characters. In 3.X, it would be close to a death sentence for the level 1s to face level 4s.

BeerMug Paladin
2015-02-07, 05:26 AM
This happened...
About three to four months ago...

And yea...
I really regret having done such a weird thing, and am doing my best to keep any of the weirdness from creeping into normal rp.

At least you became aware of it when your players talked with you. I once made a female favored soul of Bacchus and was totally out of control as a debauched party animal, often making overt passes at party members, random strangers and even once a prisoner NPC that we had captured. I took that silly birth control spell for the character that was in that adult book and made frequent use of it.

Way, way after the game ended, I wondered if maybe the character was a little much, but none of the players or the DM really said anything about the character's behaviors to me then or since. I was just doing what I thought my character would do as a loyal servant of her god. It wasn't like I derailed the campaign for debauchery.

At least in your case, it sounds like your players were arguably partly responsible and didn't realize they were goading you into further craziness. I don't think I had that excuse. Although in retrospect, I think my behavior was partly tolerated because I'd been gaming with that group for a while and this was (I think) my only overtly sexual character to date.

I think the only detail I asked my DM for about the fade-to-black timeskips were whether the experience was good, bad or mediocre. So I don't think I was quite as bad as other stories I've heard.

Luckily, as a DM, I don't ever recall having a player make a character like that. But if a player did, because of that history, I think I would probably end up doing a lot of the same things as a DM. So I'm probably only not guilty of the same thing (or worse) merely by happenstance.

Palegreenpants
2015-02-07, 07:05 AM
This happened...
About three to four months ago...

And yea...
I really regret having done such a weird thing, and am doing my best to keep any of the weirdness from creeping into normal rp.

I'm just saying, the stuff was weird, not necessarily bad. You'd think a player would have called you out on it before it got weird, though. Also, you know, the players decided on using potions of love in the first place. I'm laying at least 20% blame on the party. :smallamused:

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-07, 04:58 PM
Ah, much less problematic then, especially assuming the opponents were not heroic characters. In 3.X, it would be close to a death sentence for the level 1s to face level 4s.

Yeah, all the opponents were non-heroic, while the CL 8 was a Beast, so no heroic there either. The pc's are all level 4, and they aren't really optimized. Or, perhaps it's they're not min/maxed. One pc is a swashbuckling smuggler - dual wielding a pistol and a vibrocutlas (custom item designed by me to better fit his 'pirate' theme'), and two Jedi: a Force wizard and a melee master. My CL1's gave them a good run, even though they were just the stock 'Thug' npc's from the back of the Core book.

I have killed players in Pathfinder from the same situation. When we switch systems, the first couple combats are skewed cause I forget that the the levels are different and that not all CL's are the same in each system.

Traab
2015-02-07, 06:49 PM
Did anyone think your friend did this intentionally? Created something that horrible to get out of ever running a game?

Growing up, my brother would purposefully leave food or grease on dishes to prove that he 'was no good' at it. I was the designated dish washer quite often as a result. Your post just reminded me of that :smallfrown:.

Just wanted to reply to this. My sister tried that. She spent the next hour and a half rewashing every dish until our parents felt it was good enough. Im talking full scale drill sergeant "look at all this invisible dust on my finger" type cleaning. (it didnt help she tried to rush the second wash too) Oddly enough, she did better the next time she had to do dishes on her first attempt. Doing a crappy job does not get you out of chores in my family, it makes the chores take ten times as long and you miserable for trying such a blatantly obvious stunt.

Mr Beer
2015-02-07, 07:32 PM
Just wanted to reply to this. My sister tried that. She spent the next hour and a half rewashing every dish until our parents felt it was good enough. Im talking full scale drill sergeant "look at all this invisible dust on my finger" type cleaning. (it didnt help she tried to rush the second wash too) Oddly enough, she did better the next time she had to do dishes on her first attempt. Doing a crappy job does not get you out of chores in my family, it makes the chores take ten times as long and you miserable for trying such a blatantly obvious stunt.

I agree with not letting kids get away with this kind of BS but 90 minutes of Gunnery Sergeant Hartman sounds a bit OTT.

goto124
2015-02-07, 07:32 PM
I've been the person who's so bad at doing things, people thought I was messing them up on purpose. But that's off-topic.

Traab
2015-02-07, 08:25 PM
I agree with not letting kids get away with this kind of BS but 90 minutes of Gunnery Sergeant Hartman sounds a bit OTT.

Ok, I may have exaggerated the time she was forced to rewash the dishes, the main point was, she learned quickly that the fastest way to get out of doing something isnt to tank at it, its to do it right and get it over with. Half assing a job just costs you way more time in the long run. A pretty good life lesson imo.

Solaris
2015-02-08, 12:26 AM
I agree with not letting kids get away with this kind of BS but 90 minutes of Gunnery Sergeant Hartman sounds a bit OTT.

If it's crazy but it works, it ain't crazy.
The problem isn't that the kid half-assed the job. The problem is that the kid lied to the parents while half-assing a job. That sort of thing needs to be not merely stamped out, but crushed to a runny goo.

Mr Beer
2015-02-08, 02:57 AM
Ok, I may have exaggerated the time she was forced to rewash the dishes, the main point was, she learned quickly that the fastest way to get out of doing something isnt to tank at it, its to do it right and get it over with. Half assing a job just costs you way more time in the long run. A pretty good life lesson imo.

Agree with this.

ExLibrisMortis
2015-02-08, 08:33 AM
The problem is that the kid lied to the parents
I once heard of an example of interesting modern parenting. The idea was that the kids' (under-tens, I forgot the precise age) weekly allowance would be reduced if they did bad things. The kids had set the prices themselves, I don't know exactly, but things like 20 cents for not eating your vegetables and whatnot. The price of lying was 'everything in the pot', so immediately zeroing out the allowance for that week. To which my reaction was: "Oh, so the second time lying is free?".

satcharna
2015-02-08, 02:15 PM
It seems you're all missing the point. You don't punish them to dissuade lying, you punish them to dissuade lying poorly and getting found out. Lying well is an important social skill and hampering its development is just going to affect your offspring negatively later in life.

Mr Beer
2015-02-08, 09:34 PM
I once heard of an example of interesting modern parenting. The idea was that the kids' (under-tens, I forgot the precise age) weekly allowance would be reduced if they did bad things. The kids had set the prices themselves, I don't know exactly, but things like 20 cents for not eating your vegetables and whatnot. The price of lying was 'everything in the pot', so immediately zeroing out the allowance for that week. To which my reaction was: "Oh, so the second time lying is free?".

This is a retarded method of parenting under 10s, since they require instant consequences in order to learn, much like dogs. I would favour spanking over this and I'm not a fan of that either. Plus as you pointed out, the system is inherently flawed.

Anxe
2015-02-09, 01:23 AM
This is a retarded method of parenting under 10s, since they require instant consequences in order to learn, much like dogs. I would favour spanking over this and I'm not a fan of that either. Plus as you pointed out, the system is inherently flawed.

Close the can of worms! Quick!

Dimers
2015-02-09, 06:11 AM
It seems you're all missing the point. You don't punish them to dissuade lying, you punish them to dissuade lying poorly and getting found out. Lying well is an important social skill and hampering its development is just going to affect your offspring negatively later in life.

Wish more people appreciated this concept. Knowing when and how to cover up the right things socially is vitally important in maintaining a sane and functional society, and it has personal benefits as well.

Plus, y'know, everyone using this RPG forum plays creative-fiction games. :smallsmile:

Fiery Diamond
2015-02-09, 08:53 PM
Wish more people appreciated this concept. Knowing when and how to cover up the right things socially is vitally important in maintaining a sane and functional society, and it has personal benefits as well.

Plus, y'know, everyone using this RPG forum plays creative-fiction games. :smallsmile:

You know, there is a distinction between acknowledged fiction and deception about real life. Calling them both by the same term, lying, is disingenuous. Lying typically only refers to the latter.

Not to say that lying can never be beneficial, but it's misleading at best to pretend that crafting a fantasy story and lying about real events are even remotely related.

Exediron
2015-02-09, 09:24 PM
Ah, wacky authoritarian parenting advice in an RPG story thread! Cheers! Glad that's over!

Anyhoo...

Like anyone else who started out DMing very young, I was my own worst DM in the early years. I'll pluck another one from the vault to get things back on topic, if I can:

Probably the all-around worst campaign I ever ran was in MERP; it was infamous at the time for taking 4 months (of almost daily sessions) and containing essentially no real content at all. The party journeyed all the way from Greenwood to the far Eastern edge of the continent, passing only two locations of any note: one was an unexplained enclave of super-powerful elves hiding out from the world, beset by cave dwelling humans who made a member of the party their field marshal for no reason. The other was a terribly opulent city-state of slavers who lived under a huge dome and all had access to improbably powerful magic items (which they didn't use to make any impact on the world). The highlight of the campaign was when a PC with no personality was dropped from the back of a Fell Beast and splatted on the mountains below.

Mr Beer
2015-02-09, 09:25 PM
Close the can of worms! Quick!

LOL, sorry, agreed.

Back to awful GMs ASAP.

Solaris
2015-02-09, 10:07 PM
LOL, sorry, agreed.

Back to awful GMs ASAP.

But aren't bad parents awful GMs in the game of life?

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-09, 10:31 PM
Bad Solaris! No biscuit! :smallannoyed:

Okay, let me churn out another one. One where I was the bad DM. It was my first time DMing, so of course I was horrible. Didn't realize it of course; I was full of high-minded ideas that were original and totally kickass (except that, in hindsight, they were pretty trite and cliched even then).

I don't even remember what the village elders were asking the PCs to do, but one of the PCs was a Paladin, and one of the village elders was secretly an vampire monk that was going to be a plot hook later. Thanks to my RPing of the village elder coming off as "suspicious" and the poor wording of detect evil causing the monk to read as strongly evil, the Paladin felt obligated to smite him; the monk retaliated and landed a flurry of blows on the first-level PC that would've killed him with hit point damage if it didn't kill him with the energy drain.

The session kinda fell apart after that, though the player and I continue to play together to this day, so I guess it wasn't that catastrophic.

Anxe
2015-02-09, 11:18 PM
Bad Solaris! No biscuit! :smallannoyed:

Okay, let me churn out another one. One where I was the bad DM. It was my first time DMing, so of course I was horrible. Didn't realize it of course; I was full of high-minded ideas that were original and totally kickass (except that, in hindsight, they were pretty trite and cliched even then).

I don't even remember what the village elders were asking the PCs to do, but one of the PCs was a Paladin, and one of the village elders was secretly an vampire monk that was going to be a plot hook later. Thanks to my RPing of the village elder coming off as "suspicious" and the poor wording of detect evil causing the monk to read as strongly evil, the Paladin felt obligated to smite him; the monk retaliated and landed a flurry of blows on the first-level PC that would've killed him with hit point damage if it didn't kill him with the energy drain.

The session kinda fell apart after that, though the player and I continue to play together to this day, so I guess it wasn't that catastrophic.

That's why my suspicious NPCs always have misdirection cast on themselves. (Warning, this spell is not compatible with non 3rd edition games)

Dimers
2015-02-09, 11:40 PM
You know, there is a distinction between acknowledged fiction and deception about real life. Calling them both by the same term, lying, is disingenuous. Lying typically only refers to the latter.

Not to say that lying can never be beneficial, but it's misleading at best to pretend that crafting a fantasy story and lying about real events are even remotely related.

Mind you, I didn't actually say the word "lying" myself. Regardless, I do see a link between active lying, pro-social obfuscation, and crafting collaborative fiction. My skill in all three has progressed at the same rate as I learn to present what is believable and desirable for my audience and leave out what would not be helpful. I guess that's not everyone's experience, though, based on your reaction.

LooseCannoneer
2015-02-10, 12:18 AM
I personally give all of my plot-important NPCs magic items to avoid detection or a +50 bonus to bluff to obscure alignment.

Sith_Happens
2015-02-10, 12:21 AM
But aren't bad parents awful GMs in the game of life?

[saved for future sigging]

Nerjin
2015-02-10, 12:24 AM
Guys, this is not the Lying & Parenting thread. Either talk about Worst DM's ever or take it somewhere else please.

[hr]

As for my worst DM that would have to be my friend in High School who we will call Divad. He wasn't bad as it was literally his first time. Just a bit... lenient. He had purchased the 4th edition Red Box [the one with the VERY bare essentials]. Me, My Girlfriend, My Friend, My Sister, and Sisters Friend were Cleric, Warrior (Greatsword), Warrior (Greataxe), Rogue, Wizard respectively.

Obviously we were following the pre-written adventure and came into a room filled with statues on a chessboard. I had already read this part but I let the others goof it up. The statues came alive. This wasn't the first incident of him being lenient but... it was certainly the most obvious. The reason being that the following was allowed to happen:

- Greatsword was able to carve a mustache on an elephant statues and immediately gained the title of "Mustache King, Lord of All Mustaches"

-Greataxe was too far away to attack a statue and so taunted it. She literally made it so sad that it got depressed and got a -1 on rolls. She did the same thing next turn and it cried dealing water damage. A few turns later she used a free action to taunt it one last time. It was so sad it went emo and cut itself to death.

-My cleric was even allowed to tie a rope to his Hammer (mace maybe?) and use it as a ranged weapon as though I were adjacent.

It was fun and all but... Obviously very 'clown shoes'. I thought for a long time that it was because of the edition but... In 3.5 he was running a Dragon Age themed campaign for both myself and My girlfriend (Same as before) where he allowed me to play as a 300+ lbs beardless dwarf and my girlfriend to play as an Elf Sorcerer.

It was going well. We saved the wardens [they were apparently supposed to die and us take their place but... Best laid plans.]

So during the Daelish Elf thing we came across several Lycantheropes (Level 2, I believe, is what we were). One of whom was a Small elf who was a wererat. He is important because he was injured enough that he couldn't flee with the rest of them.

I had been rolling poorly and decided to be a weirdo and bellyflop the elf-formed Lycantherope (he had surrendered). Nat 20... He decided this was lethal damage. Crit 300+ pound dwarf (+Armor) on top of a lithe little elf... not pleasant.

Again the campaign was entertaining [until he dropped it... As he always does] but he was a bit too lenient on what he'd allow.

Anxe
2015-02-10, 12:48 AM
Sounds more like he enjoyed a slight comedic bent in his campaign. Not bad for a worst DM story!

Palegreenpants
2015-02-10, 09:10 AM
So during the Daelish Elf thing we came across several Lycantheropes (Level 2, I believe, is what we were). One of whom was a Small elf who was a wererat. He is important because he was injured enough that he couldn't flee with the rest of them.



Wererats, in Dragon Age? Andraste, forgive this GM of his sins.

Spojaz
2015-02-10, 11:16 AM
My worst DM just refuses to pay full attention to anything. Doodles while we roll-play, texts while we resolve inter-party conflict. At our last game, while we were in combat, he was painting miniatures! It's not like we play at a glacial pace either.

Synovia
2015-02-10, 12:04 PM
Bad Solaris! No biscuit! :smallannoyed:

Okay, let me churn out another one. One where I was the bad DM. It was my first time DMing, so of course I was horrible. Didn't realize it of course; I was full of high-minded ideas that were original and totally kickass (except that, in hindsight, they were pretty trite and cliched even then).

I don't even remember what the village elders were asking the PCs to do, but one of the PCs was a Paladin, and one of the village elders was secretly an vampire monk that was going to be a plot hook later. Thanks to my RPing of the village elder coming off as "suspicious" and the poor wording of detect evil causing the monk to read as strongly evil, the Paladin felt obligated to smite him; the monk retaliated and landed a flurry of blows on the first-level PC that would've killed him with hit point damage if it didn't kill him with the energy drain.

The session kinda fell apart after that, though the player and I continue to play together to this day, so I guess it wasn't that catastrophic.

This sounds more like "Bad Paladin" than "Bad GM" to me - attacking everything that reads as evil and suspicious isn't lawful at all.

TheCountAlucard
2015-02-10, 01:20 PM
Nah, believe me, it was my fault. I didn't play the NPC particularly well, misinterpreted rules, and killed off two PCs to get the plot going.

zinycor
2015-02-10, 01:58 PM
Guys, this is not the Lying & Parenting thread. Either talk about Worst DM's ever or take it somewhere else please.

[hr]

As for my worst DM that would have to be my friend in High School who we will call Divad. He wasn't bad as it was literally his first time. Just a bit... lenient. He had purchased the 4th edition Red Box [the one with the VERY bare essentials]. Me, My Girlfriend, My Friend, My Sister, and Sisters Friend were Cleric, Warrior (Greatsword), Warrior (Greataxe), Rogue, Wizard respectively.

Obviously we were following the pre-written adventure and came into a room filled with statues on a chessboard. I had already read this part but I let the others goof it up. The statues came alive. This wasn't the first incident of him being lenient but... it was certainly the most obvious. The reason being that the following was allowed to happen:

- Greatsword was able to carve a mustache on an elephant statues and immediately gained the title of "Mustache King, Lord of All Mustaches"

-Greataxe was too far away to attack a statue and so taunted it. She literally made it so sad that it got depressed and got a -1 on rolls. She did the same thing next turn and it cried dealing water damage. A few turns later she used a free action to taunt it one last time. It was so sad it went emo and cut itself to death.

-My cleric was even allowed to tie a rope to his Hammer (mace maybe?) and use it as a ranged weapon as though I were adjacent.

It was fun and all but... Obviously very 'clown shoes'. I thought for a long time that it was because of the edition but... In 3.5 he was running a Dragon Age themed campaign for both myself and My girlfriend (Same as before) where he allowed me to play as a 300+ lbs beardless dwarf and my girlfriend to play as an Elf Sorcerer.

It was going well. We saved the wardens [they were apparently supposed to die and us take their place but... Best laid plans.]

So during the Daelish Elf thing we came across several Lycantheropes (Level 2, I believe, is what we were). One of whom was a Small elf who was a wererat. He is important because he was injured enough that he couldn't flee with the rest of them.

I had been rolling poorly and decided to be a weirdo and bellyflop the elf-formed Lycantherope (he had surrendered). Nat 20... He decided this was lethal damage. Crit 300+ pound dwarf (+Armor) on top of a lithe little elf... not pleasant.

Again the campaign was entertaining [until he dropped it... As he always does] but he was a bit too lenient on what he'd allow.


Where is the problem with this DM?

Togath
2015-02-10, 02:59 PM
Where is the problem with this DM?

I'm honestly confused how that's a bad gm story as well.

Ceiling_Squid
2015-02-10, 03:08 PM
I'm honestly confused how that's a bad gm story as well.

Might have been expecting a very different tone from the Dragon Age setting, which is much more serious. It sounds like a rather poor fit for a goofy game.

Not a bad DM by any means, but I can see why a fan of the world of Thedas might be annoyed. Depends on the player.

Nerjin
2015-02-10, 03:09 PM
Oh don't get me wrong. I had fun and all. I was just sharing the story of my 'worst' GM. Honestly my biggest problem was that he would DM two or three sessions and then just drop it.

runeghost
2015-02-10, 04:32 PM
I just remembered one from summer break during college that was pretty bad. The old high-school gaming group gets back together, and one guy volunteers to GM - he says he has this awesome new high-level adventure he wants to run for AD&D (2nd Ed). (I think it was purchased, but I'm not sure.) We agree as to how that's pretty spiffy, and we do all have some appropriately high-level characters.

Now, we're talking six level 18+ characters, with a few weaker PCs in the low to mid teens and henchmen tagging along. While I don't think we were great roleplayers, neither were we muchkins, this was a powerful, well-geared party with characters leveled through years of play; deadly in combat and with a massive arsenal of magic, tricks, and clever ideas, along with plenty of sheer brute force. This is a party that's not above blowing a Wish if they're in big trouble.

After a little prep (for spell selection, mostly) we boldly set off to the mysterious, ominous, undead-spewing and definitely Evil tower that had suddenly appeared overnight on a high hill overlooking the capital of the kingdom which several of the PCs called home. We swiftly fought our way through the tower (which was immune to all spells), and found a massive dungeon complex beneath it.

As best I recall, we did indeed get through all the combat encounters in the complicated but extremely linear dungeon pretty easily. But that's where the linear part comes in. The guy running it had GM'd before, but he wasn't a 'regular' GM. And the adventure pretty obviously had a path we were supposed to follow. No matter what. Which is where things started to go *off* the rails.

Bear in mind that though all the place we searched high and low for clues, items, hints, anything that would guide us in any way, shape or form, and found nothing, nor was there any treasure besides occasional item used by an opponent, most of which disintegrated or exploded or were cursed. (Writing this up, I can't help but wonder if there was an item key or something that the GM just plain old missed.) Just monsters and "puzzles" that involved taking damage, sacrificing items, or just randomly doing exactly the right thing to get past.

Locks that cannot be opened by a level 20 thief, or level 7 spells, and have no other way to be opened that we can find? Okay, we'll go around, sure. Even if that involves miles of water-filled maze and a dragon-turtle. (Walls, doors, pools, traps, etc are apparently all 100% magic resistant.) Magical darkness that's proof against Limited Wish, and max-level clerical spells? Okay... we'll carefully probe our way through. No divination spells work, at all, but the bad guys can still spot our invisible characters? Well, dang, but that's what cover and healing is for. A grate that can't be budged by a +6 adamantine crowbar wielded by a character with 24 strength? And breaks said crowbar without warning or an item save? Um, dang. That fighter went through quite a bit to get that particular piece of gear.

It went on that way for a while, with nothing except "whatever the module says" working, and valued magic items trashed in an eyeblink, particularly if it looked like they could short-circuit the railroad. And then we got to a spot where the script called for everyone to be knocked unconscious by poison gas. With no warning and no save and no avoiding, naturally, even for the character who wasn't breathing, had appropriate contingency spells, or the Master of Winter (monk 13), who was immune to poison AND in possession of an item that granted him a save against poisons with no save.

We revolted. Told the GM it wasn't working, and we were all retroactively un-running his module. (The only time I've ever done that.) He later told us it was supposedly about defeating a ultra-powerful lich's attempt at godhood (although there was no indication that I remember to lead us to think anything of the sort). And no, it wasn't Vecna Lives! which has its own, different railroading problems. I played occasionally with the guy who ran it for years afterward, but never let him GM again. :smallsmile:

Khedrac
2015-02-10, 05:09 PM
...And then we got to a spot where the script called for everyone to be knocked unconscious by poison gas. With no warning and no save and no avoiding, naturally, even for the character who wasn't breathing, had appropriate contingency spells, or the Master of Winter (monk 13), who was immune to poison AND in possession of an item that granted him a save against poisons with no save.

This sounds to me like it might have been A3 - the third of the 1st Ed Slavelords sequence which was a tournament module where at the end you were all knocked unconscious by a poison gas trap and loose all your gear ready for A4 (which was the final round of the tournament), that or more likely, A1-4 which was re-issued as a combined volume. However it wasn't for high level characters (more like 4-8 iirc) and therefore it could have unpassable things because the characters wouldn't have access to alternatives routes. Given you said Dragon Turtle it was probably someone's idea of how to up-level it for high-level characters without bothering to think about how many new options that adds in.

Sad.

Milo v3
2015-02-10, 09:07 PM
Where is the problem with this DM?

Me and my friends would've hated a DM being so silly, especially with the emo thing, that'd probably get at least two people to walk out immediately.

zinycor
2015-02-10, 09:21 PM
Me and my friends would've hated a DM being so silly, especially with the emo thing, that'd probably get at least two people to walk out immediately.

for what i did read, the GM only reacted to what the players wanted, and it was the DM choice to take the tone of the game as a funny one. Which can be awesome if you are into that kind of game.

Obviously you or your friends don't have to play like that, but it's a valid way to play RPGs

Milo v3
2015-02-10, 09:51 PM
for what i did read, the GM only reacted to what the players wanted, and it was the DM choice to take the tone of the game as a funny one. Which can be awesome if you are into that kind of game.

Obviously you or your friends don't have to play like that, but it's a valid way to play RPGs

Yep, merely saying how that could be being a bad GM, because ridiculousness isn't to everyones tastes. Though, my players do do silly stuff like throw longswords at their enemies, make magic items with Profession (Farming), taunt their enemies with stupidity, and one often wears an owl-suit. But the emo thing would be definitely crossing a line.

Traab
2015-02-10, 10:12 PM
for what i did read, the GM only reacted to what the players wanted, and it was the DM choice to take the tone of the game as a funny one. Which can be awesome if you are into that kind of game.

Obviously you or your friends don't have to play like that, but it's a valid way to play RPGs

Too be fair, that could be said for a lot of these worst dms ever type stories. After all, some people LIKE rails! Just go back and reread the entry of the dm and his buddies who have run the exact same campaign 5 times now the exact same way each time and are just as stoked to start the 6th. And considering how often we have seen different dms and their absolute love of rape and general molestation, there is clearly a measurable portion of the tabletop realm that finds that type of game awesome. We have people who love heavy roleplay light combat games, and those who love heavy combat light roleplay, we have fans of the sandbox, fans of the absurd, fans of the ultra realistic, fans of the fumble chart. One mans heaven is another mans hell.

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-11, 02:13 PM
I was talking to a close friend the other day, one from a game I ran back in 2010. Apparently, I am considered a emotionally manipulative GM and one you can't trust by a specific other player. All for one plot twist that I have not done since.

So here's the deal, it was a Savage Worlds fantasy setting, complete with some custom premade spells to help give them out - sometimes they lack creativity when given reign over how it looks or effects it does. So in the game they started to have trouble figuring things out and getting the job done, so to help them, I gave threw an NPC their way and they took her and her quest to heart. Porum was a wizard, one that specialized in healing and buffing (like any good white mage should) and she and her brother, Palom (a black mage), were on a quest to defeat (insert bbeg). But Palom had been lost at sea, and she knew he had ot be on the continent they were on- Porum was just so sure of it. So they took it upon themselves to help her find her brother, it just so happened that the bbeg the two twins were going after was the right hand man of the bbeg my players were going against. So que the overwolrd music, and the cutscene as the adventure takes place.

I initially intended them to be there for a brief adventure, maybe two depending on things, but then the group would have to part ways for some reason - I forget what I originally had planned. But my players, at this point now emotionally attached to these two 5 year old twins (I didn't realize how attached they were) decided they must protect them - despite being shown that the twins can take care of themselves (Palom alone survived a typhoon after being thrown into the water off the ship the twins were on). Nothing I did could separate them, so I figured I'd already "borrowed" the twins from a certain game, I might as well "borrow" a lot twist that involved them as well.

The next part is a spoiler for Final Fantasy IV, so spoilers - you've been warned, plus the game is 24 years old.
OK, so the scene is set. They are going to a castle/dungeon combo, even after being warned numerous times not to - explicitly stating they will die if they go. They go anyway. At this point, I figured if they are going to go no matter what, I will do this bit no matter what. Now in the castle, and after defeating the minor bbeg that the twins were after, they get into a hall and the bbeg comes back. He's got no life left, just enough to trap them in this short hallway. The walls start closing in, slowly. My players are freaking out, trying everything to get out. The twins are relatively calm. They give say how it will be OK, they know what to do. They both go and appear to be pushing the walls back - but instead turn to stone. My players are stunned - jaws hanging open and everything. I'm feeling confident they will want revenge and to return them to life (after all, you can do this in the game as well so I will let them do it if they want to quest it). My players ask questions, and find out they didn't do it through magic alone, but through sheer will. It can't be magically undone with normal means.

Here comes the attachment part. One player, whom I've spoken about before in the other thread, M the bard player, begins to cry. Like, seriously cry. If you walked in, you'd think her mom just died. The game was over for the night anyway, and after that the game died. In hindsight, I should have picked up on things along the way, but I didn't. If I had, I don't think I would have done that. I like pulling stuff like this, but not at the expense of my players emotional or mental state.

I suppose it makes little difference now, but it probably explains why she never seems to have an open seat at her table when she GM's or why she never seems available for my games. She's still a good friend though.

zinycor
2015-02-11, 07:36 PM
I was talking to a close friend the other day, one from a game I ran back in 2010. Apparently, I am considered a emotionally manipulative GM and one you can't trust by a specific other player. All for one plot twist that I have not done since.



well, that was one tough plot twist, as you describe it the player is completely right to not trust you

Milo v3
2015-02-11, 07:47 PM
I was talking to a close friend the other day, one from a game I ran back in 2010. Apparently, I am considered a emotionally manipulative GM and one you can't trust by a specific other player. All for one plot twist that I have not done since.

I see no issue with what you did, except that you wouldn't let them quest to try and fix it.

goto124
2015-02-11, 08:59 PM
To be fair, he is a great GM for managing to make the players FEEL for the NPCs. As opposed to 'how much XP for that?'

Lord_Burch
2015-02-11, 09:11 PM
I see no issue with what you did, except that you wouldn't let them quest to try and fix it.

It sounded like the campaign fell apart after that, though maybe I'm reading it wrong.

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-11, 09:12 PM
well, that was one tough plot twist, as you describe it the player is completely right to not trust you

I don't blame her. I've gotten attached to characters, just not quite as much as she did.


I see no issue with what you did, except that you wouldn't let them quest to try and fix it.

Sorry if it was unclear, but I never stopped them. I would have happily supplied them with the quest. The game just ended that night. The next couple sessions they just couldn't get back into it and so it just sort of flaied and that was the end of it.


To be fair, he is a great GM for managing to make the players FEEL for the NPCs. As opposed to 'how much XP for that?'

Thanks. My group is pretty good about it, and I do feel bad about it - I didn't know how hard she took it until earlier. the player and I had talked about it after the game and said she was OK after awhile. Generally, they don't beg for XP, and get a better kick out of RP than just getting loot and XP.

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-11, 09:13 PM
It sounded like the campaign fell apart after that, though maybe I'm reading it wrong.

Nah, you got it right.

Milo v3
2015-02-11, 10:04 PM
Sorry if it was unclear, but I never stopped them. I would have happily supplied them with the quest. The game just ended that night. The next couple sessions they just couldn't get back into it and so it just sort of flaied and that was the end of it.

Then I'm not exactly sure what you did wrong.

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-13, 12:57 PM
Then I'm not exactly sure what you did wrong.

Technically, from a game/mechanics/story standpoint, nothing. But I do feel I was a poor GM if I broke the trust of a friend. Even unintentional, I feel it's my responsibility to not break my players in anyway I can. I'm the GM, the guy responsible for a good game, and for providing the story and world for them to interact with. Some of that also falls upon them, but as GM I feel more of it falls on me. After all, if I'm not running it, then there is no world, no story, and no characters.

Ceiling_Squid
2015-02-13, 03:10 PM
Technically, from a game/mechanics/story standpoint, nothing. But I do feel I was a poor GM if I broke the trust of a friend. Even unintentional, I feel it's my responsibility to not break my players in anyway I can. I'm the GM, the guy responsible for a good game, and for providing the story and world for them to interact with. Some of that also falls upon them, but as GM I feel more of it falls on me. After all, if I'm not running it, then there is no world, no story, and no characters.

*sigh*

Aside from dealing incorrectly with an overly-sensitive player who got WAY too invested emotionally, I don't see any reason to beat yourself up over it. It's a game, and the only thing you could have done better would be to have served up a quest hook in a more obvious and immediate fashion, and turned that sadness into motivation. Oh well, you learn and move on to better GMing techniques.

All that talk of breaking trust and emotional manipulation strikes me as rather melodramatic and eyeroll-worthy, however. I get the sense that the other player probably has an unhealthy trust issue, since they're responding to a genuine connection to a fictional character by acting cagey and betrayed.

It's fine to admit you were made uncomfortable by the thought of emotional investment, and good enough reason not to game with a particular type of group. It's incredibly immature, however, to get suspicious and blame it on malicious action by the GM instead of your own foibles.

In essence, saying "Your type of game makes me uncomfortable" is much more acceptable than "You betray trust and manipulate people." That's ascribing villainy and making an accusation where it doesn't belong.

Knaight
2015-02-13, 04:40 PM
Aside from dealing incorrectly with an overly-sensitive player who got WAY too invested emotionally, I don't see any reason to beat yourself up over it. It's a game, and the only thing you could have done better would be to have served up a quest hook in a more obvious and immediate fashion, and turned that sadness into motivation. Oh well, you learn and move on to better GMing techniques.

Beating yourself up is unhelpful here, but there are things to be learned here. One of them is that there are certain subjects that have a disproportionately likely chance of triggering a strong reaction, and these are best handled carefully. One of these is bad things happening to kids - particularly if you have parents in your group, and particularly if the kids in question are close to the same age as their kids.

Sith_Happens
2015-02-13, 05:25 PM
To be fair, he is a great GM for managing to make the players FEEL for the NPCs. As opposed to 'how much XP for that?'

Yeah, this basically sounds to me like his being such a good GM that he screen-wrapped to "total killjoy.":smallwink:

Milo v3
2015-02-13, 09:35 PM
Technically, from a game/mechanics/story standpoint, nothing. But I do feel I was a poor GM if I broke the trust of a friend. Even unintentional, I feel it's my responsibility to not break my players in anyway I can. I'm the GM, the guy responsible for a good game, and for providing the story and world for them to interact with. Some of that also falls upon them, but as GM I feel more of it falls on me. After all, if I'm not running it, then there is no world, no story, and no characters.

I'm honestly not sure how you broke their trust though... I'm assuming you didn't tell them "These NPC's are immortal " soo.. how did you betray their trust. NPC's can die in games with combat and traps. They overreacted, and you didn't foresee said overreaction.

Anxe
2015-02-13, 10:21 PM
It wasn't really a trap though... It was more a "rocks fall and kill the twins"

Sparx MacGyver
2015-02-13, 11:05 PM
Thanks for the support, but in truth melodramatic was not my intent. I just put down as it came into my head. After posting here, I decided to call up that player. We went and got lunch, and we talked for awhile. While she did admit and explain that the game is what made her feel that way, she also revealed it was other personal issues also in effect here. Suffice to say, I'm simply the straw that broke the camels back. She also won't be gaming with me anytime soon. she didn't go into detail, so what I'm left to understand is her personal issues are whats causeing her grief - I presume that me at teh table triggers some depression orweird flashback or something. It's just an assumption since she didn't give me anything concrete. I'm sad to not have her at the table, but shes still a good friend.

Best of luck to her, but I'm moving on. I am not going to start second guessing myself now, I'm running 4 games so theres not time for it. Not sure how else to put it, so I'm just going to put this incident behind me. Make note of it for future refernce, and just move on.

goto124
2015-02-14, 03:50 AM
Ouch. It's just plain bad luck. Neither of you did anything wrong. *comforts both of you*

Obak
2015-02-14, 06:14 PM
Used to have this DM called T. T was an okay DM but he was fixated with insulting the players intelligence, humiliating their PCs, never giving enough information for coherent plans (my guess was because he as wining it most often, remember one time we played DnD around level six and goth thrust into a room with six beholders, he never bothered with the CR apropriate table) and allways throwing wrenches into the machinery, forcing players to min/max their characters to even stand a chance. Worst part is he hated roleplaying, everything was just supposed to be like a bizare road movie with crazy encounters, witty remarks and ultraviolence. He never listened to player advice or suggesttions in how they wanted the campaign to evolve and was fixated with the notion that if he didn't understood something, no one else in the world would do so either. Investing in skills such as legedermain, knowledge or statecraft was allwas a waste of points.
Worst part was that he allways played rampat favourites, especially another guy called K that was a notorious cheater, in game thief and playerkiller that allways tried to make games into his personal bizare clown fest exposes. Tjis was especially frustrating when we had a campaign going for a while, had actually succeeded in advancing the plot and building a power base when K would storm in, steal the wizards staff, knock the thief unconcious and stuffing his mouth full of feces, killing the main PC contact, raping his daugjter and setting the tavern we lived in on fire. T would giggling cheer him on and any atempts to stop this madness was met with utter disregard. The next meeting, K was gone and we where left with the mess while T gloated over how much "how bad you morons ****ed up".

Solaris
2015-02-14, 06:24 PM
... You and I have different benchmarks for 'okay DM'.

Obak
2015-02-14, 06:30 PM
The quality of his quests or his DM pcs never came into question (except that it allways featured a sexy self-insert female elf warrior mage), and as long as he didn't decided to act like a complete ass we all had quiet a good time. He was kind of an introvert though and openly despised almost everyone and everything that didn't agree with him, this in combination with DM omnipotence was sadly enough to push himself over the ledge occasionally. He was a terrible player though...

Obak
2015-02-14, 06:31 PM
Well okay, he was kind of a terriblw person, but he had his moments.

The Glyphstone
2015-02-14, 07:14 PM
Well okay, he was kind of a terriblw person, but he had his moments.

Were those moments all when he was asleep? I can't think of any reason you would want to be in the same room as this person while awake.

Obak
2015-02-14, 07:57 PM
He was an old friend, the only DM in town amd he could be hysterically funny.

Kid Jake
2015-02-14, 09:09 PM
I've sadly had very little experience on the player side of the screen, but one of the few DMs I've ever had provided an excellent example of how NOT to run a game for me. He wasn't really a horrible DM, from what I saw of him I'd imagine that most of his games were probably pretty fun, but the only time I ever played with him he let his entire campaign come apart over a single die roll.

It was an Eberron game (back when Eberron was new and flashy) and we were playing a group of explorers hired to go spelunking in some far off hole in the ground for reasons that escape me now. We were taking an airship to our destination when we were suddenly hijacked by a bunch of guys in uniforms we didn't recognize that seemed to be after a specific passenger on board.

They were delaying our progress, so like any good group of adventurers we figured 'Screw that noise, we don't get paid by the hour!' and started murdering them; which was a lot of fun. They had some weird tattoos, they fought like men possessed, we had some cool scenes where I pretended to be a terrified child (I was playing a halfling rogue) getting chased by a bloodthirsty priest (LG half-orc cleric/Paladin) which confused the hell out of the hijackers long enough to let us butcher them and made us all laugh.

All in all it seemed like things were going as planned until the Changeling Bard decided to try some diplomacy/bluff. I don't remember exactly what he said IC, but it basically amounted to "We didn't mean to murder so many of you guys, I'm pretty sure we're on the same team."

The DM seemed more than a little confused by the halfassed lie, but let him roll for it and our romp'em stomp'em good time ground to a halt as the hijackers lead five men literally drenched in the blood of their fallen brothers in arms to their leader who didn't even bother rolling his own sense motive check. He was just like 'Yep, you guys that I've never seen nor heard from before and who stumbled into my private quarters while I'm in the middle of directing thievery and murder seem pretty cool. Wanna help us do secret villain stuff?'

We never got a chance to answer him because the DM called it quits for the night and asked for some time to sort out his plot before we played again, and we just never heard from him again.

So nowhere near as bad as most of the ones on here, but you've either got to know how to keep a reasonable reign on your players or adapt to their choices and he couldn't do either; which killed his game.

Gritmonger
2015-02-15, 03:38 AM
I've had mostly good GM's, but the few bad experiences I have had were eye-openers, and have informed a lot of my own role as GM over the years.

I was playing in a series of short one-shots using second edition with my brother and some of his friends, so we were all taking turns GM'ng short encounters or adventures. I GM'd a few, one of which turned into the infamous "Journey through the Lower Intestine" - but the one that stood out for me was one where I played a true neutral thief, with my brother and his friend as fighter and ranger, and another friend as a mage, all first level.

Other friend was the GM - and he started it off like so many adventures do that do not start in a tavern, with us in a King's throneroom, told to bring in the big bad evil guy. Oh, and DMPC would be accompanying us to make sure we knew the way.

Now a little background, for those who don't know or might not remember - the Second Edition DMG had rules for setting up custom classes, including multipliers for level advancement and such based on restrictions. Some, like me, tried to get all of the abilities and restrictions to zero out or near zero, so one could level to third level by killing one kobold. Others, like our current in this story DM, did other things.

So, we start out and already a morning's ride away, the first signs of trouble appear. We have to eat lunch. Now, I'm a packrat by nature, so I had bought all sorts of things to stuff in my pack, including flour and honey, and with water could make myself some really poor cakes to eat. But the other players hadn't, and so the GM ruled that they each took a hitpoint of damage from hunger. Remember, these are first-level 2nd edition, so our four-at-most-hitpoint wizard has been quartered by the morning munchies.

That aside, we run into some hobgoblins and manage to fend them off with a few lucky rolls, but we are fast approaching BBEG lair. So DMPC, a halfling with no obvious armor or weapons, starts egging us on, and by the time we reach the lair of BBEG is positively livid that we aren't outright attacking immediately. So mage mouths off to him, about how he could help, and why wasn't he doing something if it was so important.

So DMPC punches mage.

For 32 points of damage.

No roll. No save, no supernatural ability. See, this DMPC was a DM homebrew class a-la 2nd Edition, so it had 50 hit-points per level, and did 8 damage per level hand-to-hand. Not 1d8 - just a straight up 8 hp per level. So mage is stone-dead. I'm true neutral - whatever strength the baddie has, this seems like it's balanced to me, so I grab mage's corpse and scarper. My brother and his other friend, however, figure that this DMPC is worth a lot more experience than the BBEG, and proceed to initiate combat. And the situation quickly devolved from there. I think I was the only survivor, but it was opined that it was probably best not to continue.

Sith_Happens
2015-02-16, 06:34 PM
his... self-insert female...

Um, okay. Not that you can't gender-swap a self-insert character I guess, but I've personally never heard of it done.:smallconfused:

Nerjin
2015-02-16, 06:39 PM
Hm... I would think that it might have something to do with him possibly wanting to be a woman perhaps? Sort of how a Mary Sue will have the qualities the author wants instead of the ones they have?

It's possibly an interesting view into the psyche of your DM or maybe they just felt like having a lady self-insert as a smoke-screen or because they didn't quite realize it at the time.

I dunno. That'd be kinda interesting if that was the case.

Ravian
2015-02-16, 06:48 PM
Might be more of an idealized girl-friend. Lots of guys make female characters based off of the kind of woman they'd want to date. It's not even just damsels or femme fatales. Some people enjoy a girl that can kick butt and take names. (You certainly see enough of them in fiction.)

Sith_Happens
2015-02-16, 10:33 PM
Some people enjoy a girl that can kick butt and take names.

*raises hand*

Solaris
2015-02-17, 08:39 AM
Might be more of an idealized girl-friend. Lots of guys make female characters based off of the kind of woman they'd want to date. It's not even just damsels or femme fatales. Some people enjoy a girl that can kick butt and take names. (You certainly see enough of them in fiction.)

I know I've done that with some of my writing, though not so much with female characters in games. The one time I did do that in a D&D game, it turned out another player and I have similar taste in women and blech awkward roleplaying.

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-17, 12:09 PM
I know I've done that with some of my writing, though not so much with female characters in games. The one time I did do that in a D&D game, it turned out another player and I have similar taste in women and blech awkward roleplaying.

Haha I a player in an Eberron campaign try to lure me into a drawn out roleplay session with me Roleplaying a Warforged prostitute his character was soliciting for the evening.

It's like, Hey buddy, I'll roleplay a robot, and I may even roleplay you picking up a hooker; both at once is asking too much of me.

Ravian
2015-02-17, 12:57 PM
Haha I a player in an Eberron campaign try to lure me into a drawn out roleplay session with me Roleplaying a Warforged prostitute his character was soliciting for the evening.

It's like, Hey buddy, I'll roleplay a robot, and I may even roleplay you picking up a hooker; both at once is asking too much of me.

:smallconfused:

I can't imagine there'd be much demand for that. Warforged aren't exactly equipped for that sort of thing. (They don't even have any variation between genders, it's entirely a mental decision on their part if they even choose a gender at all.)

Still, as the player in question proves, there are some people with the damnedest interests.

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-17, 01:23 PM
:smallconfused:

I can't imagine there'd be much demand for that. Warforged aren't exactly equipped for that sort of thing. (They don't even have any variation between genders, it's entirely a mental decision on their part if they even choose a gender at all.)

Still, as the player in question proves, there are some people with the damnedest interests.

I gave an example of a warforged that was trying to understand and explore this thing called sexuality. It wasn't even an npc, just flavor text as I was setting the scene in a bar that the PCs frequented and the player leapt onto it with lightning speed; immediately hounding me for more questions including price and availability.

satcharna
2015-02-17, 01:40 PM
You've only got yourself to blame for making the scenery more interesting than the plot.

Kid Jake
2015-02-17, 01:59 PM
I gave an example of a warforged that was trying to understand and explore this thing called sexuality. It wasn't even an npc, just flavor text as I was setting the scene in a bar that the PCs frequented and the player leapt onto it with lightning speed; immediately hounding me for more questions including price and availability.

You can't expect to mention a Warforged Prostitute (http://youtu.be/3SgND89KUWE?t=38s) and then just move on with your life; this is the stuff that 'adventure' is made of.

Mr Beer
2015-02-17, 05:22 PM
You can't expect to mention a Warforged Prostitute (http://youtu.be/3SgND89KUWE?t=38s) and then just move on with your life; this is the stuff that 'adventure' is made of.

I'm thinking of those metal skanks Bender would pick up whenever possible in Futurama.

Ravian
2015-02-17, 10:12 PM
Yeah but that's just the thing. A sexbot is at least expected to have some degree of equipment for the task. Warforged are exactly what it says on the tin, created for the purpose of fighting. The only reason they're sapient at all is because it allows them to improvise and make their own plans on the battlefield. They didn't even have their own names, they had to come up with them on their own. I can understand a Warforged trying to understand sexuality, since they do have emotions and feelings like desire, but I can't imagine there would be a ton of demand for their services since they weren't designed for any sort of physical function then what would be necessary on the battlefield.

They'd probably have the install a lot of padding at the very least.

JNAProductions
2015-02-17, 10:25 PM
*grind grind grind crunch*

"That will be 20 gold pieces."

To be on topic, I'm my own worst DM. I'm pretty new to it, so it's to be expected, but I've managed to kill the same player 3 times in 2 sessions. He had to make a brand new character during dinner because his Paladin got killed off beforehand.

To writ, we're running Hoard of the Dragon Queen, and on the first Langdedrosa fight, he gets absolutely wasted in one shot of lightning breath, which I, as a crappy DM, used.

The second time, he challenged Langdedrosa in the hatcheries, and while I did make it so just Langdedrosa was fighting him, he didn't have any chance to flee when at low health. (Admittedly, he didn't try to flee, and there was an entire army between him and safety, but still.)

The third time, I encouraged him to make a Half-Orc Barbarian, so he wouldn't die once per long rest. He then proceeded to assault Gleamsilver (Zhentarim gnome) while in a caravan train, so I had all the caravan guards start attacking him. He was vastly outnumbered and lost, naturally, but I chose to have him killed (for being a Half-Orc, which I recommended to him... *facepalm*) due to racism and the fact that he was a raging barbarian attacking an innocent woman.

Part of it was the party's fault, since he was playing the only brave character in a aprty of craven cowards, but I really should be less deadly.

Gritmonger
2015-02-17, 11:06 PM
...They'd probably have the install a lot of padding at the very least.

Considering that the race as written isn't adventure-worthy without dipping into body modification, I can't see where this would be a barrier... Suddenly I'm having visions of "Five Nights at Freddy's" in a whole new vein...

Let me out! How did I get here!?!

Dimers
2015-02-17, 11:35 PM
A sexbot is at least expected to have some degree of equipment for the task. Warforged are exactly what it says on the tin, created for the purpose of fighting.

"Whoreforged." :smallcool:

Anxe
2015-02-18, 12:30 AM
"Whoreforged." :smallcool:

Welp. That's enough internet for tonight. GOODNIGHT

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-18, 12:33 AM
Ok, I guess I'm the Worst DM Ever for creating a Whoreforged.

Hahaha oh well.

Solaris
2015-02-18, 02:17 AM
It's not like I needed those SAN points anyways.

Diachronos
2015-02-18, 02:38 AM
That reminds me of the first 4e campaign I was ever in. One of the players was a huge fan of the Eberron setting and the Warforged, so he rolled up a Warforged character (can't remember for the life of me what his class was, only that he broke my warlock's jaw for saying nobody cared about his homeland).

I don't recall what exactly led up to it, but one of the few things that I can remember clearly from that campaign was that Kommander Vulcan had a "piston-p****", and it became almost a meme among our group after that.

Kid Jake
2015-02-18, 02:44 AM
I don't recall what exactly led up to it, but one of the few things that I can remember clearly from that campaign was that Kommander Vulcan had a "piston-p****", and it became almost a meme among our group after that.

I imagine it being shouted with the same urgency as Charlton Heston shouting "Soylent Green is peeeeeople!"

ComaVision
2015-02-18, 11:27 AM
*grind grind grind crunch*

"That will be 20 gold pieces."

To be on topic, I'm my own worst DM. I'm pretty new to it, so it's to be expected, but I've managed to kill the same player 3 times in 2 sessions. He had to make a brand new character during dinner because his Paladin got killed off beforehand.

To writ, we're running Hoard of the Dragon Queen, and on the first Langdedrosa fight, he gets absolutely wasted in one shot of lightning breath, which I, as a crappy DM, used.

The second time, he challenged Langdedrosa in the hatcheries, and while I did make it so just Langdedrosa was fighting him, he didn't have any chance to flee when at low health. (Admittedly, he didn't try to flee, and there was an entire army between him and safety, but still.)

The third time, I encouraged him to make a Half-Orc Barbarian, so he wouldn't die once per long rest. He then proceeded to assault Gleamsilver (Zhentarim gnome) while in a caravan train, so I had all the caravan guards start attacking him. He was vastly outnumbered and lost, naturally, but I chose to have him killed (for being a Half-Orc, which I recommended to him... *facepalm*) due to racism and the fact that he was a raging barbarian attacking an innocent woman.

Part of it was the party's fault, since he was playing the only brave character in a aprty of craven cowards, but I really should be less deadly.

I killed one of my players twice in two sessions a couple months ago. I felt bad about it because he had literally spent more time making the second character than playing it. I warn all my players that I'm a lethal DM before they join my game though.

goto124
2015-02-18, 11:38 AM
I tried to transfer a plot from a computer game into a freeform (you can see how bad this is). I made the hints so obvious it felt like railroading, and it turned into railroading when the players chased after an NPC. Because unlike CRPGs, you can talk to people and actually expect them to give reasonable responses. Not wanting the NPC to actually answer any questions the players had, I made the NPC run away. Repeatedly.

I later had the NPC return to be interrogated in a brutal and impressive way at least.

Sliver
2015-02-18, 12:07 PM
I tried to transfer a plot from a computer game into a freeform (you can see how bad this is). I made the hints so obvious it felt like railroading, and it turned into railroading when the players chased after an NPC. Because unlike CRPGs, you can talk to people and actually expect them to give reasonable responses. Not wanting the NPC to actually answer any questions the players had, I made the NPC run away. Repeatedly.

I later had the NPC return to be interrogated in a brutal and impressive way at least.

Heh, that reminds me of one game I played... I was getting a bit tired of DMing so I asked my friend if he could DM a session or two, to which he agreed. It's worth noting that by this point, he mentioned how he liked that one place in Fallout with the cannibal families and wanted me to do a quest with that, though I refused. Guess what he had prepared for us to play? Yeah...

After the game, he actually told me that he had to give us more hints than he had planned to, because we weren't getting it quick enough and he was afraid we'd get stuck. I realized the entire "plot" moments into the game, so I really don't know.

The next session, he picked up a few side-quests from Oblivion. No real disguise or twist to those either.

The only other session he ever DMed for us was an oneshot which went "you are all friends who have known each other for a long time. A mysterious stranger teleports you into an enclosed arena. Kill everybody else to be allowed to leave!" That... Didn't go well either. If he just went with "let's play a deadly arena battle, fight." people would have been more open to it... Since it was planned that way. He decided to add a bit of RP to it, without actually planning for anything that we might try besides MURDER MY CLOSEST FRIENDS.

Feddlefew
2015-02-18, 12:35 PM
I once played Call of Cthulhu d20 with a killer GM.

I know, I know, CoC is by design a high lethality game. But I think we each went through 4 or 5 PCs before reaching the TPK at the end of the tunnel. By that point, instead of being afraid of the horrible things that were happening to our characters, we were busy making new ones while we played.

The deaths were also stupid. For instance, how many shoggoths can fit in one shack? About 20 in various nooks and crannies. One character got their head bitten off when they looked in the fridge, no warnings, and another lost a hand to one hiding in an overcoat draped over the banister. After the third one popped out of the kitchen sink, we set the place on fire and sped off into the night, with a large pack of flaming goop monsters in our wake.

Then the local police tried to pull us over, eventually running us off the road. The shoggoths ignored police and treed us, and it wasn't until after we drew the conclusion that the police must be in a cult that the GM realized the shoggoths should eat the police, and they did so.

We died in a raging forest fire instead of by shoggoth, funnily enough.

Edit: Fixed paragraphs.

Arbane
2015-02-18, 03:40 PM
The deaths were also stupid. For instance, how many shoggoths can fit in one shack? About 20 in various nooks and crannies. One character got their head bitten off when they looked in the fridge, no warnings, and another lost a hand to one hiding in an overcoat draped over the banister. After the third one popped out of the kitchen sink, we set the place on fire and sped off into the night, with a large pack of flaming goop monsters in our wake.


That is impressively stupid, given that shoggoths are SUPPOSED to be about the size of a bus. Just because they're amorphous doesn't mean they can hide in a refridgerator.

Traab
2015-02-18, 04:00 PM
That is impressively stupid, given that shoggoths are SUPPOSED to be about the size of a bus. Just because they're amorphous doesn't mean they can hide in a refridgerator.

Clearly the entire cabin was actually a single shoggoth, and it had various tendrils in those locations to insta gib people with. When they set it on fire, it called up some nearby buddies and started the chase.

Milodiah
2015-02-18, 04:04 PM
Clearly the entire cabin was actually a single shoggoth, and it had various tendrils in those locations to insta gib people with. When they set it on fire, it called up some nearby buddies and started the chase.

Given shoggoths are horrible black seas of protoplasmic eyes, mouths, and sludge, someone must have rolled a nat 1 on their Spot check for that explanation to be valid :smalltongue:


Yeah, CoC is supposed to kill you. CoC is not one of those Choose-Your-Own-Adventure books where one seemingly rational decision kills you instantly 80% of the time and you're supposed to read through it several times until you "win" by process of elimination. It seems like your GM/Keeper failed to grasp that distinction.

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-18, 04:06 PM
Clearly the entire cabin was actually a single shoggoth, and it had various tendrils in those locations to insta gib people with. When they set it on fire, it called up some nearby buddies and started the chase.

Worst timeshare ever.

Anonymouswizard
2015-02-18, 06:10 PM
Clearly the entire cabin was actually a single shoggoth, and it had various tendrils in those locations to insta gib people with. When they set it on fire, it called up some nearby buddies and started the chase.

I now have the plot for my next Call of Cthulhu session. Thank you sir.

Feddlefew
2015-02-18, 07:02 PM
If I remember correctly, the general consensus was that one shoggoth had somehow gotten divided into mini-shoggoths right up until the burning shack literally burst like an overfilled water shoggoth balloon.

I distinctly remember the one veteran player making this face: :smallannoyed:

Necroticplague
2015-02-18, 07:17 PM
Aren't some shoggoths able to 'condense' themselves, so to speak? To the point they can basically sculpt themselves to human shapes? Of course, a whole house of them would be ridiculously implausible, but it might explain one or two.

YossarianLives
2015-02-19, 12:32 AM
Plot twist: everything is actually a Shoggoth. EVERYTHING.

The Glyphstone
2015-02-19, 12:47 AM
Plot twist: everything is actually a Shoggoth. EVERYTHING.

Including the Investigators?

Kid Jake
2015-02-19, 01:00 AM
Including the Investigators?

Especially the Investigators.

(Un)Inspired
2015-02-19, 02:03 AM
Dun dun DUUUUUN!

Gritmonger
2015-02-19, 08:19 AM
Dun dun DUUUUUN!...wich Horror...

goto124
2015-02-20, 05:47 AM
"No plot survives contact with the PCs" sounds like good advice? Which means don't bother with a plot? Replace plot with puzzle and it still applies?

Which makes me wonder, if we went over this thread, what percentage of DMs are bad due to railroading, or otherwise being very heavy-handed?

Knaight
2015-02-20, 09:05 AM
"No plot survives contact with the PCs" sounds like good advice? Which means don't bother with a plot? Replace plot with puzzle and it still applies?


There's a reason I use neither of these things, though some sort of narrative will emerge through the interactions between the PCs and the setting (and the PCs and the other PCs) as will situations which are much better handled by thinking one's way through than other approaches. Having a predetermined plot and trying to make the players stick to it is the sort of thing that ruins games for just about everyone.

Synovia
2015-02-20, 02:38 PM
Set up a situation and then see what happens - let the players steer.

I have a lot of problems with systems that make it difficult to stat out NPCs - if it takes me 20 minutes to stat out an NPC, then I either have to do it before the game, or I'm going to be trying to prevent the players from doing things that bring those stats in to play - remember - there's not really supposed to be a right answer in these situations - just different answers with different consequences.

If your players want to kill an NPC that you had as plot centric - you should be asking "what would happen if they tried" not "how do I prevent them from doing it" . Too many DMs get way too attached to their plots, and when the players start trying to do their own thing, they start trying to rearrange things to get them back on track.

BootStrapTommy
2015-02-21, 12:32 AM
Recently my oldest nephew renewed his interest in RPing, so on my birthday he decided to attempt DMing, first time he's tried since AD&D days. His first campaign was fun. A quirky dungeon (the only source of light was a candle which rendered the holder invincible, but useless). Afterwards a walk through Arcadia put valuable information in our hands. A good first session.

It was the second session he lost control. Balanced encounters eluded him. We flew through with ease, or were forced to flee violently over powered encounters. Yet somehow, the information we possessed (the troop locations of a invading demon) we sold violently over value to Arcadia. And then we sold it again to a devil (whose emissaries we had pretended to be when we obtained it) to take advantage of. Then we sold all that back to the demon.

Result: Arcadia and the devil met a violent end and our 3rd level characters emerged the wealthiest mortals in creation.

I've no problem with generous DMs, but 3 sessions later we players voted unanimously to strip ourselves of our OWN magic items, because encounter balance had became neigh impossible.

Almarck
2015-02-21, 02:18 AM
Well, I'm guilty of a degree of railroading on top of making some really questionable scenarios to speed things along, os I think I might qualify to get here on someone's list.

My only defense is I need practice at the craft, especially when it comes to managing multiple characters all at once as I've only really DMed a handful of times now.

It's like my sixth session in and now I'm giving my players the ability to choose what quests they take where as before everything was all in one big progression.

Ceiling_Squid
2015-02-21, 02:17 PM
Well, I'm guilty of a degree of railroading on top of making some really questionable scenarios to speed things along, os I think I might qualify to get here on someone's list.

My only defense is I need practice at the craft, especially when it comes to managing multiple characters all at once as I've only really DMed a handful of times now.

It's like my sixth session in and now I'm giving my players the ability to choose what quests they take where as before everything was all in one big progression.

Sixth session ever, and already you're aware of this and offering a semblance of choice?

You'll be fine. Not even close to terrible. Keep practicing, and listen to the input of your players. Good seat-of-the-pants non-railroady DMing is a skill that takes a long time to develop.

Zyzzyva
2015-02-21, 09:16 PM
My worst DM was, for various reasons mostly related to personality, basically incapable of retaining control of or even directing the players. First session was two hours long, and we got nowheres near the plot, three of the six PCs had engaged in interpersonal battle, resulting in two deaths, and a fourth had joined the Nazi Party. It was, admittedly, a game set in 1920s Europe, but that's still kind of a bad sign for keeping things in hand.

Plus side: at the end of the first session he said "ok, I'm not cut out for DMing", we burned the game to the ground and he returned to being a pretty good player. So definitely better than it could have gone. :smallsmile:

Gritmonger
2015-03-22, 06:54 PM
My worst DM ever.

Okay. So by this time in my life, I had DM'd a few times, and knew how players felt being railroaded, and had even gone so far as to DM for an entire group of 9 at once, with various players exhibiting various afflictions of typical problem PC behavior, and managed to keep them together as a group through several sessions - including one where everybody played level 0 commoners, and would level up to first based on their actions in the campaign (that one was a blast...)

So I wasn't coming at this from the standpoint of being a power gamer, or somebody who didn't understand DMing, just so I can make a few points clear.


So...
We gathered together a group of us to game - a lot of us with experience in storytelling (it was a group of comic book artists - I was one, there were several other guys I'm still friends with even today, oh so much later) but we weren't there to be snobs or pick or anything. We were gamers - we all loved tabletop, and were looking forward to gaming in what was still good old fashioned 2nd edition AD&D, something most of us had grown up with.

And the GM was a guy who we all knew, who had come up with a unique setting he wanted us to try, and he would GM it and we would play through his unique setting.

So we start on the edge of this island in the sky, near a tavern and a farm, and I'm fuzzy on the details, but basically deus-ex-DM the section of the island cracks away, and we start floating up.

It's a vertical railroad. The DM is expecting us to sit back and enjoy the ride while we float to near the top of the world, because apparently depending on how much and where different materials are located, bits of land settle at certain heights.

And we were there to ride along and admire it while we were helpless. Because it was a work of art to be admired, and pondered at how wonderful and unique it was. This was well before Avatar, so he can say he thought of it first.

Now, I asked why we were floating up. I was playing a monk (yes, a 2nd edition crippled monk - don't judge me!) with very few proficiencies other than rope use (I loved using lasso - again, don't judge me!), and a relatively high INT.

So when I was told "there are two kinds of rocks here - those that fall 'up' and those that fall 'down'," I immediately formulated a plan to get some of these rocks, tie them off in bags around each of us until we were nearly neutrally buoyant, and jump to safety.

"You can't find any of the rocks where you are."

Okay, so this is a farm, it has a well...

I abseil down and start digging. Eventually, when it becomes apparent I'm not going to give up, I gather enough to make myself neutrally buoyant.

But apparently it won't work for everyone, because several of the commoners with us aren't keen on jumping.

So I ask what's nearby.

"Oh, the inn. But you are still all rocketing upward."

So I ask if the inn has a sturdy roof.

"Yes, but I don't see why that would matter."

I start a fire-line passing "floating" rocks over to the inn, to be stuffed into the attic. Until I think we have enough.

Then we cut the Inn free.

The DM starts to sputter. "You can't do... okay, you cut it free, but you're still on top of the island going up, and have no way to move it..."

I pull out bedsheets (it's an inn) and cross-beams from the lower floor (it's an inn) and fashion some sails and controls (I have rope-use)... and shortly, despite the one-way elevator railroad, we are off.

We managed to escape the railroad, and finally everybody could start playing again... except that no players returned for the next session.

Anonymouswizard
2015-03-22, 08:08 PM
My worst DM ever.

Okay. So by this time in my life, I had DM'd a few times, and knew how players felt being railroaded, and had even gone so far as to DM for an entire group of 9 at once, with various players exhibiting various afflictions of typical problem PC behavior, and managed to keep them together as a group through several sessions - including one where everybody played level 0 commoners, and would level up to first based on their actions in the campaign (that one was a blast...)

So I wasn't coming at this from the standpoint of being a power gamer, or somebody who didn't understand DMing, just so I can make a few points clear.


So...
We gathered together a group of us to game - a lot of us with experience in storytelling (it was a group of comic book artists - I was one, there were several other guys I'm still friends with even today, oh so much later) but we weren't there to be snobs or pick or anything. We were gamers - we all loved tabletop, and were looking forward to gaming in what was still good old fashioned 2nd edition AD&D, something most of us had grown up with.

And the GM was a guy who we all knew, who had come up with a unique setting he wanted us to try, and he would GM it and we would play through his unique setting.

So we start on the edge of this island in the sky, near a tavern and a farm, and I'm fuzzy on the details, but basically deus-ex-DM the section of the island cracks away, and we start floating up.

It's a vertical railroad. The DM is expecting us to sit back and enjoy the ride while we float to near the top of the world, because apparently depending on how much and where different materials are located, bits of land settle at certain heights.

And we were there to ride along and admire it while we were helpless. Because it was a work of art to be admired, and pondered at how wonderful and unique it was. This was well before Avatar, so he can say he thought of it first.

Now, I asked why we were floating up. I was playing a monk (yes, a 2nd edition crippled monk - don't judge me!) with very few proficiencies other than rope use (I loved using lasso - again, don't judge me!), and a relatively high INT.

So when I was told "there are two kinds of rocks here - those that fall 'up' and those that fall 'down'," I immediately formulated a plan to get some of these rocks, tie them off in bags around each of us until we were nearly neutrally buoyant, and jump to safety.

"You can't find any of the rocks where you are."

Okay, so this is a farm, it has a well...

I abseil down and start digging. Eventually, when it becomes apparent I'm not going to give up, I gather enough to make myself neutrally buoyant.

But apparently it won't work for everyone, because several of the commoners with us aren't keen on jumping.

So I ask what's nearby.

"Oh, the inn. But you are still all rocketing upward."

So I ask if the inn has a sturdy roof.

"Yes, but I don't see why that would matter."

I start a fire-line passing "floating" rocks over to the inn, to be stuffed into the attic. Until I think we have enough.

Then we cut the Inn free.

The DM starts to sputter. "You can't do... okay, you cut it free, but you're still on top of the island going up, and have no way to move it..."

I pull out bedsheets (it's an inn) and cross-beams from the lower floor (it's an inn) and fashion some sails and controls (I have rope-use)... and shortly, despite the one-way elevator railroad, we are off.

We managed to escape the railroad, and finally everybody could start playing again... except that no players returned for the next session.


Ummm.... was there any plot other than magic lift? How long was it before you started trying to escape, was it the first 5 minutes, or did you let him have a good long ramble about this world he's constructed (which seems fairly bland to me, I'm sure floating islands have been around as long as literature about going to the moon, but I may just be from Cloudcukooland), before getting off the one way trip to asphyxiation? It's not the railroading that is the problem, because it can be done enjoyably (although I'm never playing with that GM again, Mr 'you can't be more intelligent than the psychic even though this character is technically an air mage and therefore should be a scholar and in fact has a good in character reason to take Expertise (Mythology) but you still can't because the psychic has it', although thankfully it didn't put me off mutants and masterminds), it's the fact it just sounds boring.

Gritmonger
2015-03-22, 08:33 PM
Ummm.... was there any plot other than magic lift? How long was it before you started trying to escape, was it the first 5 minutes, or did you let him have a good long ramble about this world he's constructed (which seems fairly bland to me, I'm sure floating islands have been around as long as literature about going to the moon, but I may just be from Cloudcukooland), before getting off the one way trip to asphyxiation? It's not the railroading that is the problem, because it can be done enjoyably (although I'm never playing with that GM again, Mr 'you can't be more intelligent than the psychic even though this character is technically an air mage and therefore should be a scholar'), it's the fact it just sounds boring.

I did leave out twenty minutes of us going "what's going on" floating up then another twenty minutes of "so, is there anything we can do?" with all of us trying to come up with ideas and being told "no" floating up before we started settling into something of a fugue state as we waited for whatever deus-ex came next. And I got tired of waiting.

So, the long version:
We have made a set of simple first-level characters, being told it will be an adventure on floating islands. We figure it will probably be us wandering one of the continents, with maybe air-pirates and strange, giant floating behemoths, or cities that are only loosely anchored to the lands they control...

"So, where are we exactly?"

"You're on the [insert long archipelago name here], on [some continent name here]. You all are here for a celebration, at one end of a small town, where there is an inn and a farm, when a sudden rocking crash tears the part you're on away. You start rising above the continent." This was about as much description as we got, actually. There were tons of place-names, but it really was not much more than continents without water and separated on a third axis. Nothing unique other than the fact that rain fell from some void overhead to some void below, and was mystically recycled.

"Well, do we have any time to react?"

"No."

"So, do we have airships, or life-vests, or something for when something like this happens?"

"No."

"So, is there anything we can do?" (Low level wizards, a cleric, and a fighter and a monk, all of us asking).

"No."

"Wait, you mean nobody has any way of getting off of a floating island, and we live on them all the time? And nobody has invented a parachute or a glider"

"No."

"Well isn't there a feather-fall spell? I could cast feather fall and go for help, right?"

Checks feather fall, only lasts for rounds per level, so only for falling for one round at his level.

"It will wear off long before you reach land"

[Long pause, uncomfortable looks around the table as we kind of talk about how we're not able to do anything]

"You guys are still going up."

"Is there anything nearby we could jump to, above us, as we pass?"

"No" [didn't even look at his 'map']

[Another long uncomfortable pause]

"So, could we make an anchor and throw it at some nearby piece of land we pass, if we can't jump?"

"Nothing is going to come within miles of you."

[Another long pause, we talk among ourselves, try and get to know one-another, while there is nothing to do, several characters get drinks at the inn.]

More of this, as we wait on the DM, who seems content to continue describing our ascent.

Players start to get up from the table and go get refreshments (we were playing in a comic book store)

More delay, as we ask if there's any special properties to wood, or trees - do the trees float? What about clouds, how do clouds stay where they are if there's no apparent air pressure (since it wasn't decreasing as we went up)?

"Oh, things stay where they are because of the balance of [heavium] to [floatium]." He seems quite pleased about explaining this part, because it means it's a "logical" floating island setup, and he came up with it himself.

"What does [floatium] look like?"

"Oh, uh..." Seeing we were starting to try and get some use out of this "It looks just like normal rock."

"Yeah, but - if I take some of it, it's going to fall up, if I have a pure bit, right?"

"Yes, but there's none of it nearby. It would have floated up already if it was a rock nearby."

"Okay, so there has to be some in this piece of land, and if it's not at the surface, it has to be below - and if it's indistinguishable from normal rock, there has to be more of it than normal rock for us to be going up..."

"Well, yes...but it's pretty far underground where you are, and you can't dig some of it up right under your feet or anything."

"And when you started describing this area, you said there was an inn and a farm..."

"Well, yes..."

"So where do they get their water?"

"A well, I guess."

"Okay, so I go down the well. And I start digging"

...

Rad Mage
2015-03-24, 04:49 PM
I did leave out twenty minutes of us going "what's going on" floating up then another twenty minutes of "so, is there anything we can do?" with all of us trying to come up with ideas and being told "no" floating up before we started settling into something of a fugue state as we waited for whatever deus-ex came next. And I got tired of waiting.

WOW! So what exactly was the game supposed to be? I mean I read some other entries in this thread and I can kind of see where the DMs are going. But I have no idea what this guy was trying to do.

Zyzzyva
2015-03-24, 05:37 PM
WOW! So what exactly was the game supposed to be? I mean I read some other entries in this thread and I can kind of see where the DMs are going. But I have no idea what this guy was trying to do.

Sounds like he read the first book of the Weis/Hickman Death's Gate Cycle and wanted to put it in his game, and then... didn't make any effort. :smallconfused:

Gritmonger
2015-03-24, 07:30 PM
Sounds like he read the first book of the Weis/Hickman Death's Gate Cycle and wanted to put it in his game, and then... didn't make any effort. :smallconfused:

You know, given the publication date and the timing of the campaign, it is entirely likely... he also had a number of suns that floated through at the top of the - tube - or whatever his world was.

Gritmonger
2015-03-25, 01:28 AM
WOW! So what exactly was the game supposed to be? I mean I read some other entries in this thread and I can kind of see where the DMs are going. But I have no idea what this guy was trying to do.

None of us did. Which was why it was so strange to the lot of us. We were all supposed to be professionals at storytelling, coming up with character motivation and story and understanding narrative pressure, and none of us dedicated to out-and-out ruining the campaign...

So we were, well, polite in waiting for some indication of where the story was going. The only answer seemed to be: "up."

Milo v3
2015-03-25, 01:37 AM
None of us did. Which was why it was so strange to the lot of us. We were all supposed to be professionals at storytelling, coming up with character motivation and story and understanding narrative pressure, and none of us dedicated to out-and-out ruining the campaign...

So we were, well, polite in waiting for some indication of where the story was going. The only answer seemed to be: "up."

Could you wait till it stopped going up? Was that an option or was he not allowing fade-to-black time skips?

Luminestra
2015-03-29, 03:13 AM
I have a few worst DMs, but the one that comes to mind is James.

James is an alright guy, he is even an alright DM. I appreciate the amount of time and effort he puts into his games. But man do they annoy me. The really annoying part was that James and Andrew usually played just by themselves (with James DMing). They lived out in the country but sometimes me and my friends would venture out and spend the weekend. These stories all took place before we could drive, so we depending on Andrews dad to ferry us back into town. James also has a loose understanding of the rules and plenty of homebrew stuff I could never read. Also, he prides himself on not letting players die in his campaign. In the hundreds of ingame years he has never had a player die.


This was probably the third or fourth time I played with these two. The other session where actually fun in a way. This session marked the start of a decline. Andrew, Me and Kevin where all playing while James DM'd. James likes to give his players gifts/powers during character creation. Kevin wanted to be a succubus. Andrew was royalty (as usual) and I could shoot water arrows (he vetoed all my other ideas) the water arrows did an extra D6 against the mummy enemies we fought. We also had a DMPC with us. But not a self-insert kind. Just a robbed figure who was mysterious.

Kevin had somehow convinced James to let him be a succubus and that his racial HD granted him free sorcerer levels. We where level 6ish and Kevin was basically a level 12 or somthing. Then, first town we reach, Andrew douses the place in oil and then kills everyone in it with a javelin in the name of a dark god. The javelin become and artefact that will drive anyone it strikes insane. Oh, he also got a few wishes. We take a small break after Andrew got wishes and I asked the DM if I could rework a few aspect of my character, he said it was fine.

During the break, I retooled myself into a four armed archer of doom. I took favored enemy(mummy things) and rapid shot and many shot. Enchanted my bows to have bane (mummy things) and a few other things. At the end of it I was basically dealing over 100D8's a round(I forget the specifics). I even cleared the character over with the other players and the DM. They all ok'd it. Several times. Then once combat hit, they saw how much damage I was doing and veto'd it. I kinda just followed the party around not doing anything for the remainder of the session (eight hours or so)


I know that James likes to give powers out during character creation. He frequently told me that he could handle any player or power. We started this session a little differently, James wanted us to write out backstories. He wanted at least four pages each. So I wrote out how my character stumbled into a divine rank of 0 and became his tribes god of fire. I did not hide this in the story, It was blatant. I wrote atop of my sheet "GOD OF FIRE" and below it "DIVINE RANK 0". I had also written my powers on the back of my sheet. I did not inform the other party members that I had made a god. I handed him the sheet and he read over it. Looks at my character sheet, nods. Looks up at me and winks "I got somthing special planned for your character" So I assumed he read and understood what I wrote. Well, not too far into the game we come across this massive fire blocking our path. I tell the party not to worry and step into the fire. The party is alarmed. The DM is alarmed. I tell the DM I use my powers to put the fire out. He looks at me blanky and says "what powers?" I give him an equally blank stare "the ones in my backstory and on my character sheet. He then informs me that he didnt actually read my backstory or character sheet. Or anyones BS/character sheet. and was incredibly mad at me for trying to "cheat". The rest of the party was kinda pissed too. I still don't get how that was cheating.


So it's Andrews birthday and we all head out to his house. James has a campaign planned out for us.
The players:
Me - A bard
Tom - A bard (he lived in my characters backpack and didn't actually play at all)
Andrew - A warlock
Harold - I honestly forget
Kevin - a succubus sorcerer. monster HD still gave sorcerer levels.

At the start of this, he gives me and Tom a flute with can create illusions so real that they can do actual damage. Kevin got the succubus thing again, Andrew was royalty. I forget what Harold got. Anyway, We start the game and get hired by the same DMPC from before. He leads us to a mine and we are told to kill the mummy things(like from the last game, it was a shared setting) inside. We discuss flooding it, smoking them out or even collapsing the mine. But the DMPC vetoes it all and says we must fight them in melee. One player says screw that and goes to start demolishing it. Only to have the DMPC stop them. Eventually we make it to some sort of battle against the mummy enemies and get into this 'epic fight'. Everyone went down to do their fighting and I worked at making an illusion of a massive tidal wave to scare the enemies while Tom works on making a massive weight to drop on them. We figure this should kill a large portion of the army. Then the DMPC teleports to us and no roll/save hits us to make us unconscious. At that point I had my character snap the flute and I left the game to go upstairs and watch TV. If that was where the night ended it wouldn't have been so bad.

About five minutes into watching TV James comes up and informs me that if I am at Andrews house, I HAVE to play. He then turns the tv off. "I'm not leaving until you come and play and you are not allowed to watch TV". This angered me. But I didnt yell or anything. I just grumbled and went downstairs. Intent on ruining this game.

I agree to go back to the game. I'm in the battle and a massive tornado comes down. James informs me that its going to kill me if I dont move.
I simply informed him that my character was the Avatar(from last airbender) and I commanded the tornado to stop. it did. I then proceeded to abuse my new Avatar powers all throughout his game. skip forward a couple of hours and I was actually having fun. I had almost forgotten that I was angry. I even managed to earthbend into a golem that has a decent SR. cue the final battle. We meet some big golem boss and we try to fight him. Only to learn he is immune to magic and can only be damaged by some rare element(we do not know this IC). Andrew pulls out a sword made of the rare element (he picked it up earlier in the game) and starts to kill the boss. I jump out of my golem and into the boss. Inform the DM that I am either immune to all attacks or dead. He stares at me stunned for a few seconds and in a barely audible whisper says "umm....your dead". I was asked to not return to his games.

Jornophelanthas
2015-03-29, 12:33 PM
To be brutally honest, I find Luminestra's misadventures with DM James to be mostly a case of Luminestra being a disruptive player, while DM James is merely a mediocre DM who happens to have players who have found ways to abuse his weaknesses.

(Luminestra is far from the only one - Kevin seems to be a problem player too. But Luminestra's actions actually disrupt the game the most.)

Milo v3
2015-03-29, 07:27 PM
To be brutally honest, I find Luminestra's misadventures with DM James to be mostly a case of Luminestra being a disruptive player, while DM James is merely a mediocre DM who happens to have players who have found ways to abuse his weaknesses.

(Luminestra is far from the only one - Kevin seems to be a problem player too. But Luminestra's actions actually disrupt the game the most.)

How?

The first story was just trying to match the other player who had been given the same goodies.

The second story Luminestra admitted they were being abit of a jerk, but the GM was still a pretty big idiot for pretending to read the sheet and backstory and then Ok'ing the character.

The final story is one where they tried to quit since "not gaming is better than bad gaming", but was forced to play.

Keltest
2015-03-29, 07:31 PM
How?

The first story was just trying to match the other player who had been given the same goodies.

The second story Luminestra admitted they were being abit of a jerk, but the GM was still a pretty big idiot for pretending to read the sheet and backstory and then Ok'ing the character.

The final story is one where they tried to quit since "not gaming is better than bad gaming", but was forced to play.

Neither of them handled it particularly well.

Luminestra
2015-03-29, 09:11 PM
I agree, I did not handle those situations the best. I would handle them much differently nowadays, Probably by not playing with them anymore.

SiuiS
2015-03-30, 01:54 AM
I see no issue with what you did, except that you wouldn't let them quest to try and fix it.

Oh, no. He would.

Hey, you should run a game wherein these two show up and are fixed, having had other people find them in a dungeon and revive them, and let word get back to the player. Some minor closure. Proof that things are only bleak when you stop in the dark.


Um, okay. Not that you can't gender-swap a self-insert character I guess, but I've personally never heard of it done.:smallconfused:

Yeah, that's kinda creepy.


Ok, I guess I'm the Worst DM Ever for creating a Whoreforged.

Hahaha oh well.

Man how would that even work?

Lose your armor playing, gain physical sexual dimorphism for either A) charisma and interaction bonuses or B) qualifying for the willing deformity feat lines?


Worst timeshare ever.

Now, hold on... I can think of some worse places to go.


Plot twist: everything is actually a ShoggothOrcus. EVERYTHING.

Fixed!


My worst DM ever.

Okay. So by this time in my life, I had DM'd a few times, and knew how players felt being railroaded, and had even gone so far as to DM for an entire group of 9 at once, with various players exhibiting various afflictions of typical problem PC behavior, and managed to keep them together as a group through several sessions - including one where everybody played level 0 commoners, and would level up to first based on their actions in the campaign (that one was a blast...)

So I wasn't coming at this from the standpoint of being a power gamer, or somebody who didn't understand DMing, just so I can make a few points clear.


So...
We gathered together a group of us to game - a lot of us with experience in storytelling (it was a group of comic book artists - I was one, there were several other guys I'm still friends with even today, oh so much later) but we weren't there to be snobs or pick or anything. We were gamers - we all loved tabletop, and were looking forward to gaming in what was still good old fashioned 2nd edition AD&D, something most of us had grown up with.

And the GM was a guy who we all knew, who had come up with a unique setting he wanted us to try, and he would GM it and we would play through his unique setting.

So we start on the edge of this island in the sky, near a tavern and a farm, and I'm fuzzy on the details, but basically deus-ex-DM the section of the island cracks away, and we start floating up.

It's a vertical railroad. The DM is expecting us to sit back and enjoy the ride while we float to near the top of the world, because apparently depending on how much and where different materials are located, bits of land settle at certain heights.

And we were there to ride along and admire it while we were helpless. Because it was a work of art to be admired, and pondered at how wonderful and unique it was. This was well before Avatar, so he can say he thought of it first.

Now, I asked why we were floating up. I was playing a monk (yes, a 2nd edition crippled monk - don't judge me!) with very few proficiencies other than rope use (I loved using lasso - again, don't judge me!), and a relatively high INT.

So when I was told "there are two kinds of rocks here - those that fall 'up' and those that fall 'down'," I immediately formulated a plan to get some of these rocks, tie them off in bags around each of us until we were nearly neutrally buoyant, and jump to safety.

"You can't find any of the rocks where you are."

Okay, so this is a farm, it has a well...

I abseil down and start digging. Eventually, when it becomes apparent I'm not going to give up, I gather enough to make myself neutrally buoyant.

But apparently it won't work for everyone, because several of the commoners with us aren't keen on jumping.

So I ask what's nearby.

"Oh, the inn. But you are still all rocketing upward."

So I ask if the inn has a sturdy roof.

"Yes, but I don't see why that would matter."

I start a fire-line passing "floating" rocks over to the inn, to be stuffed into the attic. Until I think we have enough.

Then we cut the Inn free.

The DM starts to sputter. "You can't do... okay, you cut it free, but you're still on top of the island going up, and have no way to move it..."

I pull out bedsheets (it's an inn) and cross-beams from the lower floor (it's an inn) and fashion some sails and controls (I have rope-use)... and shortly, despite the one-way elevator railroad, we are off.

We managed to escape the railroad, and finally everybody could start playing again... except that no players returned for the next session.


Did you ever just sit back and let him finish?


None of us did. Which was why it was so strange to the lot of us. We were all supposed to be professionals at storytelling, coming up with character motivation and story and understanding narrative pressure, and none of us dedicated to out-and-out ruining the campaign...

So we were, well, polite in waiting for some indication of where the story was going. The only answer seemed to be: "up."

Ah.

Have you considered asking him what he was doing? Just to know?

Sparx MacGyver
2015-03-30, 09:08 AM
Oh, no. He would.

Hey, you should run a game wherein these two show up and are fixed, having had other people find them in a dungeon and revive them, and let word get back to the player. Some minor closure. Proof that things are only bleak when you stop in the dark.


That was the idea. I was literally ripping off different older Final Fantasy games for that plot. I think that one is from FFIV, the twins were Palom and Porum. In the video game, they come back. I was going to do the same, but just never got the chance.

irian
2015-04-02, 10:12 AM
I just hope to not whinning too much...

At the start of the new campaign, the gm told us "There will be few magical items".
We accepted it, thinking it would challenge us and thinking how many adventure the pcs would live looking for magical items. We were wrong, terribly wrong.

Keep in mind that the pcs wanted to create a guild, so they needed money and couldn't spend too much in equipment.
The oracle of life, played by the gm's girlfriend, oversaw the party's funds.


At level 5, my pc, a magus, had a scimitar +1, a mithral chain shirt a masterwork morningstar.
The fighter had a spiked shield +1, a short sword +1, a masterwork morningstar and a spiked medium armor.
The oracle of life had the bracers of armor +2, the Dusty rose prism ioun stone that the pcs found in a previous dungeon and a masterwork morningstar.
The party got a bag of holding level 1, a mule, a bunch of utility items (bedrolls, waterskins, normal backpacks), 2 or 3 potions of Cure Light Wounds, no wands, no rods, no rings.

From this point (level 5) to level 9, the enemies had treasure only 6 times. It was always something the pcs had to sell, because they couldn't use it (except the Handy Haversack that the oracle kept).

The magical items weren't rare, but the pc simply didn't have enough money to buy it.
The authorities of Greengold would hire the pcs to get something done and offer small amount of money, with no refunds for traveling cost.
For example: the pcs had to transport a piece of an artifact from a state to another. The authorities offered each one 500 gp as down payment and 500 gp at the end.

After discovering that the oracle was lying about the party's funds (they had 7k gp), the pcs created the guild, but they still hadn't enough money to upgrade their equipment.

At level 7 the fighter refused to go on if he couldn't buy a Full plate using the party's funds.
At level 8, my pc asked (and paid with the party's funds) for an Headband of Vast Intelligence +2. She was using her 2nd-level spell-slot and her Arcane Pool to cast Mount Communal.
Then there wasn't money for anything else, because they had less than 2k gp.

At level 8, my pc had a mithral scimitar +1, a masterwork morningstar a mithral chain mail +1, an Headband of Vast Intelligence +2 and a masterwork gauntlet. She lost her scimitar +1 and a temple loaned her the mithral scimitar +1.
She had bought 2 3rd-level scrolls, 2 2-nd level scrolls and 2 2-nd level spell.
No wands, no scrolls, no potions, no rings.
The fighter had a spiked shield +1, a short sword +1, a masterwork morningstar, a Full plate and an efficient quiver.
The sorcerer had an Handy Haversack, a lesser ectoplasmic rod and a Cloak of resistance +1.
The oracle of life had the bracers of armor +2, the Dusty rose prism ioun stone, the Handy Haversack, a masterwork morningstar and a pair of platinum rings.
I don't remember what the bard had, but I don't think it was much.

The pcs were going on, with us expecting only XP from the fights and the gm announcing loudly when the pcs would get any treasure.
Then the gm decided to end the campaign. He tells it is not true, but I don't believe it.
He sent against the pcs a Vrock (CR9) and a Bone Devil (CR9), expecting the pcs to beat them.
The pcs survived only because the gm forgot the safe check for Terrible remorse on the Vrock and that it could move after attacking itself: the Vrock nearly killed itself, while the fighter could only do 1 or 2 points of damage. The Bone Devil got away, but only after poisoning everybody.
During the next session, the gm sent against the pcs the Bone Devil (CR9), 16 Draugr and a Worm That Walks (CR14 and I think he is the BBE).
The pcs survived because the sorcerer gave the item they were looking for to the enemies.
(The oracle of life got killed, but the gm retconned something to not make his girlfriend change pc.)

It was awful. We knew that the pcs won the previous battle only by a gm's lapse of memory.
I'm not sure how did the gm expect us to deal with this failure.

After that session, 3 players changed their pg. Gone were the fighter, the sorcerer and the bard. An inquisitor, a druid and an Arcane Trickster were added to the party.
The gm told us to level up and use WOL for level 8 to buy the equipment.
Now our pcs find treasure, but they cannot sell it because they are on a infiltration mission in Razmiran.


I really didn't like to have money problems in a Pathfinder campaign.

Keltest
2015-04-02, 11:26 AM
I just hope to not whinning too much...

At the start of the new campaign, the gm told us "There will be few magical items".
We accepted it, thinking it would challenge us and thinking how many adventure the pcs would live looking for magical items. We were wrong, terribly wrong.

Keep in mind that the pcs wanted to create a guild, so they needed money and couldn't spend too much in equipment.
The oracle of life, played by the gm's girlfriend, oversaw the party's funds.


At level 5, my pc, a magus, had a scimitar +1, a mithral chain shirt a masterwork morningstar.
The fighter had a spiked shield +1, a short sword +1, a masterwork morningstar and a spiked medium armor.
The oracle of life had the bracers of armor +2, the Dusty rose prism ioun stone that the pcs found in a previous dungeon and a masterwork morningstar.
The party got a bag of holding level 1, a mule, a bunch of utility items (bedrolls, waterskins, normal backpacks), 2 or 3 potions of Cure Light Wounds, no wands, no rods, no rings.

From this point (level 5) to level 9, the enemies had treasure only 6 times. It was always something the pcs had to sell, because they couldn't use it (except the Handy Haversack that the oracle kept).

The magical items weren't rare, but the pc simply didn't have enough money to buy it.
The authorities of Greengold would hire the pcs to get something done and offer small amount of money, with no refunds for traveling cost.
For example: the pcs had to transport a piece of an artifact from a state to another. The authorities offered each one 500 gp as down payment and 500 gp at the end.

After discovering that the oracle was lying about the party's funds (they had 7k gp), the pcs created the guild, but they still hadn't enough money to upgrade their equipment.

At level 7 the fighter refused to go on if he couldn't buy a Full plate using the party's funds.
At level 8, my pc asked (and paid with the party's funds) for an Headband of Vast Intelligence +2. She was using her 2nd-level spell-slot and her Arcane Pool to cast Mount Communal.
Then there wasn't money for anything else, because they had less than 2k gp.

At level 8, my pc had a mithral scimitar +1, a masterwork morningstar a mithral chain mail +1, an Headband of Vast Intelligence +2 and a masterwork gauntlet. She lost her scimitar +1 and a temple loaned her the mithral scimitar +1.
She had bought 2 3rd-level scrolls, 2 2-nd level scrolls and 2 2-nd level spell.
No wands, no scrolls, no potions, no rings.
The fighter had a spiked shield +1, a short sword +1, a masterwork morningstar, a Full plate and an efficient quiver.
The sorcerer had an Handy Haversack, a lesser ectoplasmic rod and a Cloak of resistance +1.
The oracle of life had the bracers of armor +2, the Dusty rose prism ioun stone, the Handy Haversack, a masterwork morningstar and a pair of platinum rings.
I don't remember what the bard had, but I don't think it was much.

The pcs were going on, with us expecting only XP from the fights and the gm announcing loudly when the pcs would get any treasure.
Then the gm decided to end the campaign. He tells it is not true, but I don't believe it.
He sent against the pcs a Vrock (CR9) and a Bone Devil (CR9), expecting the pcs to beat them.
The pcs survived only because the gm forgot the safe check for Terrible remorse on the Vrock and that it could move after attacking itself: the Vrock nearly killed itself, while the fighter could only do 1 or 2 points of damage. The Bone Devil got away, but only after poisoning everybody.
During the next session, the gm sent against the pcs the Bone Devil (CR9), 16 Draugr and a Worm That Walks (CR14 and I think he is the BBE).
The pcs survived because the sorcerer gave the item they were looking for to the enemies.
(The oracle of life got killed, but the gm retconned something to not make his girlfriend change pc.)

It was awful. We knew that the pcs won the previous battle only by a gm's lapse of memory.
I'm not sure how did the gm expect us to deal with this failure.

After that session, 3 players changed their pg. Gone were the fighter, the sorcerer and the bard. An inquisitor, a druid and an Arcane Trickster were added to the party.
The gm told us to level up and use WOL for level 8 to buy the equipment.
Now our pcs find treasure, but they cannot sell it because they are on a infiltration mission in Razmiran.


I really didn't like to have money problems in a Pathfinder campaign.

Just do what my party did and buy a tavern. Sell special druid-brew. Proceed to buy every tavern in the continent and have limitless funding.

SiuiS
2015-04-02, 11:32 AM
That was the idea. I was literally ripping off different older Final Fantasy games for that plot. I think that one is from FFIV, the twins were Palom and Porum. In the video game, they come back. I was going to do the same, but just never got the chance.

No, I mean same players, different game, different world even, they make a cameo. If anyone investigates explain the recovery quest.

lytokk
2015-04-02, 11:39 AM
That was the idea. I was literally ripping off different older Final Fantasy games for that plot. I think that one is from FFIV, the twins were Palom and Porum. In the video game, they come back. I was going to do the same, but just never got the chance.

Yeah, it was Palom and Porum from FFIV.

Most confusing part about those two is the fact that when you select them, you get an item subscreen, which hints that there is supposed to be some way to revive them. Been probably 20 years now and I don't think anyone figured it out. More than likely a sidequest that the developers forgot to put into the game, something like having to talk to yang's wife to get the frying pan to hit him with in order to bring him out of his coma in the cave of the sylphs.

ComaVision
2015-04-02, 12:30 PM
Just do what my party did and buy a tavern. Sell special druid-brew. Proceed to buy every tavern in the continent and have limitless funding.

My group wants to start a business in the game I'm DMing. I don't have a problem with it but I don't really follow the logic. They want more money, so they're going to put up a massive capital investment for small returns over time. You don't make back the principle investment in a business in a couple months.

Keltest
2015-04-02, 12:47 PM
My group wants to start a business in the game I'm DMing. I don't have a problem with it but I don't really follow the logic. They want more money, so they're going to put up a massive capital investment for small returns over time. You don't make back the principle investment in a business in a couple months.

At that point then, its a patter of DM patience. How accurately are you willing to simulate a real business venture, and how tedious is it to keep track of party funds? In my campaign, I used their tavern empire as a convenient handwave for not keeping track of the sums of gold the party has available to them, and therefore of the price of any given doodad. That's one less thing I have to pay attention to, which is perfectly fine for me.

Anxe
2015-04-02, 12:59 PM
You could switch to using d20 Modern's system of wealth. I don't remember the specifics of it and I only read it from a book my friend had. From what I do remember, you had a wealth number. Items had a cost number. Anything under your wealth number was free. You could get things above your wealth number, but it actually cost a little bit of your wealth. So you can probably get all the +1 swords you want, but if you want that big magic staff that can blow up dragons, then your wealth will decrease. This represents selling out one of your business ventures or something.

If that sounds right maybe someone else can chime in on that system who knows more about it. Or maybe this should be moved to another thread... Whateves!

Sparx MacGyver
2015-04-02, 02:02 PM
No, I mean same players, different game, different world even, they make a cameo. If anyone investigates explain the recovery quest.

Oh, I got ya. Yeah, I could try that, but I think being several games past that one, that idea might have expired. If I try something like that again, I'll keep this option in mind.


Yeah, it was Palom and Porum from FFIV.

Most confusing part about those two is the fact that when you select them, you get an item subscreen, which hints that there is supposed to be some way to revive them. Been probably 20 years now and I don't think anyone figured it out. More than likely a sidequest that the developers forgot to put into the game, something like having to talk to yang's wife to get the frying pan to hit him with in order to bring him out of his coma in the cave of the sylphs.

I had so much fun with these two, and considering in the original '91 release of the game they are 5 years old. Seems a bit young to me, but I got to annoy my players to no end with them and give them a taste of there own antics and shenanigans in the form of the twins. :smallbiggrin:

FFIV came out in '91, so just in case
I think there might have been an option if you did certain things in the game, or got a certain item, but it's just an assumption. Maybe it was planned and scrapped for time or something, I dunno. I do know that the Elder heals them off screen and brings them to one of the later end battles.

Zyzzyva
2015-04-02, 03:11 PM
You could switch to using d20 Modern's system of wealth. I don't remember the specifics of it and I only read it from a book my friend had. From what I do remember, you had a wealth number. Items had a cost number. Anything under your wealth number was free. You could get things above your wealth number, but it actually cost a little bit of your wealth. So you can probably get all the +1 swords you want, but if you want that big magic staff that can blow up dragons, then your wealth will decrease. This represents selling out one of your business ventures or something.

If that sounds right maybe someone else can chime in on that system who knows more about it. Or maybe this should be moved to another thread... Whateves!

Sounds like the WoD resource dots system.

Necroticplague
2015-04-02, 03:31 PM
Googling 'msrd wealth' produces a word document explaining it as the first thing that pops up, from wizard's own website.