View Full Version : Great DM moments - Praise where praise is due

Jay R
2017-05-23, 11:35 AM
We spend a lot of time complaining on these forums. But we can offer praise, too.

Please post moments when your DM did something - huge, small, anything - that struck you as excellence in DMing.

Here's my first one:

I was asking if I could use a particular feat, from a splatbook. [The DM's policy is that we have to ask if it's not in a core book.]

His response:

... that feat is a little broken. It's in there and you made a great build!

I can either learn to adapt for smart players or go back to just playing. My characters tend toward the strongest in a group, so it's a good bit of karma. :-)

FYI, I've already figured out scenarios where you will shine and where that nice combination of yours will be useless, so it's all good. ;-)

What I consider excellence in DMing is that he was already planning both situations where my PC will shine, and ones where his build will be useless. I get both the advantages of a strong build, and the challenge of situations where he's in trouble.


So when did your DM really impress you?

2017-05-23, 12:33 PM
So we're playing L5R, we're in a tense situation, and it doesn't feel like we're going to be able to talk our way out of it.

Now I'm playing a poet and the GM told me that I could get a free raise on any poetry recitation if I wrote an actual poem, with the caveat that poems had to be constructed outside of game time. So I decided to do a poetry travel diary, I'd write a haiku for each session we had, recapping and commemorating bad ass stuff the players did.

So it looks like one of our party members is going to be executed and I'm flipping through my notes trying to think if there's anything I can do when I remember my travel diary so I look up and ask the GM if my poet could attempt to sway the enemy with a recital extolling the virtues and epic deeds of the PC and basically begging for amnesty on the basis of "he's just that badass"

GM: You can certainly try that.

Me: Do I still get a free raise if I provide an actual poem?

GM: Yes, provided the poem is actually about the character in question.

Me: *quickly thumbs through travel diary picking out poems about that PC in particular* Ok new question, if I have 4 poems can I have 4 free raises?

GM: ....That is shenanigans but ok. Just this once.

And that is the story of how I saved a party member with the power of art.

2017-05-24, 12:07 PM
It is, in my opinion, quite a bit more difficult to tell a good story about something done well, than it is to rant about failure. But, this is a noble quest, so I will try.

Hmmm... I'm a rules lawyer. I enjoy playing by the rules, understanding my characters capabilities and being able to predict their abilities rather than "mother may I" light a cigarette with the Human Torch. I enjoy a good rules debate, because, if we find the correct rule, it means we accomplished something. And we don't have to retcon someone jumping to the moon. But, even so, I once played with a DM who made arbitrary rulings an acceptable option.

See, this DM allowed for brief discussion about the rules. There were two forms of acceptable argument. The first was pointing out the rules in the book. Straight forward enough. The second was explaining the (il)logical consequences: "if we allow a skill check to succeed on a 20, then I can take a 20 and jump to the moon".

If no-one could provide an acceptable argument within "5 minutes" (I never checked, but I suspect actual times may vary), he would flip a duplex cookie. White side up, it worked in whatever way most favored the party at this moment, and became a house rule. Black side up, it worked in whatever way least favored the party at this moment, and became a house rule.

This method caused minimal disruption to the flow of the game, encouraged everyone to bring their books and participate, and prevented the horrible "jump to the moon" horror stories one often reads about.