Support the GITP forums on Patreon
Help support GITP's forums (and ongoing server maintenance) via Patreon
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 50
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Bologna, Italy
    Gender
    Male

    Default Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Hi playgrounders. I come to you today for wisdom and advice.

    Who I am:
    I belong to a long time group of roleplayers who have played PnP together for quite a long time now. We have been through very different systems (ranging from D&D 2nd edition to Vampires Dark Ages Masquerade, and even Gygax's Dangerous Journeys).
    The group, with minor changes, is composed of quite skilled roleplayers. Me and Mr. X (let's call him this way) are the group's DMs, and we usually DM 6/8 months long campaigns. We both are experienced DMs, but after 8 months we usually end up feeling the urge to just roleplay a single character, so we switch and relax while the other one takes up the role of DM.

    The problem:
    Lately, Mr. X has became dangerously genre-savy, and exploits every situation from a very different angle. Not that there's anything wrong with it in itself, but it's becoming difficult to DM in front of such a character.

    Just as an example of his philosophy: The middle of the monologue makes a GREAT surprise round.
    Really, sometimes I wonder if he just read this list.

    The greatest problem comes from the fact that to "counter" his behaviour, I often have to resort to intelligent, competent and equally genre-savy BBEGs.
    Which can be good or bad depending on the situation, but makes the whole thing a lot harder. Because if I optimize the brain of my bad guys, my good guys end up dead.

    Let's face it: if BBEGs were an intelligent, prepared and competent bunch, there would be a whole lot of dead heroes lying around. Because the BBEG is (usually) stronger and richer, can have access to a whole lot more resources, is definitely ruthless, and had a lot of time to prepare and plan. It's just that "too perfect" BBEGs make pretty poor antagonists, imho.

    What would you do? Would you try and explain to Mr. X that genre-savyness is sometimes worse for the campaign, and creates more problems than it solves (because it solves situations but screws the "classical" feeling), would you adapt and make your epic world an equally genre-savy one, or what?

    Seriously, sometimes I am torn between my respect for the player's resourcefulness and the frustration I get for being unable to DM some serious epic.

    What's your take on this?
    (consider that I've been DMing for around 5/6 yers now, so I am no n00b and I can handle my players just fine... it's more a frustration problem on my part than a potential fun-breaking issue...)

    (that, and the fact that I find there's some serious double standard if I let my players shoot the BBEG during his polite speech during dinner, while I make him invite them for dinner with the intention of bribing them instead of - say - kill them dead in their sleep).

    Help!
    Last edited by Jan Mattys; 2010-11-15 at 10:49 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Eldritch Horror in the Playground Moderator
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Could always match him trope-for-trope - Talking is a free action in D&D, so you're perfectly justified in giving a long monologue without any chance of interruption.

    Asking him to cooperate with the narrative once in a while should be your first option though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel, on quest rewards View Post
    "Is a stack of ten pancakes too many pancakes to give to the party, even if most of them fell on the floor and one or two were stepped on? I wanted to give my party pancakes as a reward but I'm unsure if it's too much. The pancakes are also laced with blowfish poison so the party would have to get an antitoxin before they could eat the ones which weren't pulverized by shoes."

    I don't think anyone would want those pancakes even if you paid them to eat them.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    San Jose, CA

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    In D&D, being genre-savvy sometimes means ignoring your own genre-savvyness. Too bad Mr. X doesn't understand this.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Planetar

    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Ithaca is Gorges!
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Paralyzation, EVERYWHERE. Have your BBEG only ever give speeches after the party has walked into his trapped room, triggering 50 symbols of stunning and a couple compulsion effects requiring them to kneel and listen to his voice. It's a good compromise between a BBEG who is so prepared he's invincible to the party, and one who is so fatally flawed that he isn't watching the person charging toward him with a knife. If the spells are set to expire as soon as he's done his monologue, then it does not put the characters at a disadvantage, while still giving you the freedom to play up the moment without being exploited.

    I realize that the speech was only one example of the problems you're likely facing from this guy, but I find that most problems have quirkish solutions like this. It's all about finding ways to make your villains think creatively, without thinking intelligently.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Chicago Suburbs
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by The Glyphstone View Post
    Talking is a free action in D&D, so you're perfectly justified in giving a long monologue without any chance of interruption.
    This. If he keeps interrupting your monologues, start using it against him. Whenever he starts talking in character, have someone cast Slapping Hand on him.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    VA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    I have the same issue. I have been TTGing for some years now, and the most recent group i got together with is a trial to GM for, Namely because of their sheer expirience. I have found that you need to be flexible to a point, but if you feel that the player is distracting too much from the story you are trying to tell, Take him aside and mention something to him. If he is as expirienced as you say, he should understand.
    Basically you need to stick to your guns, and run the game how you see fit. Perhaps next time the fool opens his mouth you slap a shaped silence spell on him or something. Who knows. its really up to you. Stick to your BFG. seeing as you're the DM, your gun is always bigger.
    ____________________________________________

    A prisoner of war is a man who tries to kill you and fails, and then asks you not to kill him.
    ~Sir Winston Churchill



    I Am A: Lawful Evil Human Monk (4th Level)
    Ability Scores:
    Strength-15
    Dexterity-15
    Constitution-17
    Intelligence-16
    Wisdom-14
    Charisma-13

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jun 2009

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    You could go the other way and have both genre savvy enemies and good guys.

    That perpetually-grinning and idiotic shopkeeper is really a Good side guy pretending to be a ditz so he doesn't attract suspicion in the BBEG controlled town.

    The players have to be cautious when doing things, and occasionally, things will happen that they do not expect and cannot explain.
    "But... but he's the Archmage who always detects poison before eating! How did he get poisoned from the soup?!"
    - The Archmage's apprentice was taking over his position for that day and the BBEG saw an opportunity to cause widespread panic...


    It makes for a more dynamic world. It is harder to run, since you and your players have to manage more information, but you get an immersive game and far more believable setting to play in.

    Might want to remove the more "broken" information gathering spells and abilities. Or at least add counters to them.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Kurald Galain's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Jan Mattys View Post
    Just as an example of his philosophy: The middle of the monologue makes a GREAT surprise round.
    The obvious answer to this is the Paranoia mutant power, "Evil Villain Soliloqui That Stops Time While It's Going On". It does precisely what you think it does, and makes for a great moderately-leveled wizard spell, too.

    Aside from that, I would suggest giving players bonus XP for good roleplaying. Excessive genre-savviness is generally not good roleplaying.
    Guide to the Magus, the Pathfinder Gish class.

    "I would really like to see a game made by Obryn, Kurald Galain, and Knaight from these forums. I'm not joking one bit. I would buy the hell out of that." -- ChubbyRain
    Crystal Shard Studios - Freeware games designed by Kurald and others!

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    I would go with the approach of just talking to Mr X and explain that his reactions are taking away form your enjoyment of the game.

    I also have to point out one mechanic in the Torg Role playing system, as well as dice it also had cards. One card the Monolouge card was of course brilliant, able to be used by PCs and GM alike. It allowed you to monolouge without anyone taking an action till you had finished, beucase of GM fiat you could also once per session search for it in the deck and play it, worked well in the pulp superhero section of the game world.
    Spoiler
    Show
    Milo - I know what you are thinking Ork, has he fired 5 shots or 6, well as this is a wand of scorching ray, the most powerful second level wand in the world. What you have to ask your self is "Do I feel Lucky", well do you, Punk.
    Galkin - Erm Milo, wands have 50 charges not 6.
    Milo - NEATO !!
    BLAST

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Tavar's Avatar

    Join Date
    Sep 2009

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Here's a question; if you're goal is to kill/incapacitate someone, why wouldn't you attack them while their occupied doing something else, say, giving a speech?

    That's not genre savy, that's acting IC for any character with average Intelligence or Wisdom.

    One way to solve this is to put barriers between the PC's and the BBEG. Wall of Force it always popular, but anything that denies Line of effect would work. Heck, even a simple glass window would provide something of an obstacle.

    Or maybe have some sort of Magic speaker/intercom system, so the BBEF gives the speech while the PC's are going through his base, but before they reach him.
    He fears his fate too much, and his reward is small, who will not put it to the touch, to win or lose it all.
    -James Graham, 1st Marquess of Montrose
    Satomi by Elagune

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Jan Mattys View Post
    The middle of the monologue makes a GREAT surprise round.
    We deal with this via the medium of the mantra "Shut up: Boxed text!"

    Boxed text cannot be interrupted. The End.
    It's the Law of Dramatic Licence. Just like you can't gun bad guys down during cut-scenes in computer games. We always state that D&D's physical laws must be different from ours, and here's an example of it.

    If he whines, tell him it's a physical law in the universe that only bad guys can invoke. No save, no SR, no nothing. If he whines, drop a piano on his head.


    If he REALLY whines, just say 'ok, everyone is level 20 with 5 million gold's worth of loot. End of campaign.' and put your books away. If queried why, then you can reveal that is essentially what's going to happen in the game, and everything else is just fluff and storytelling. If he clearly doesn't want to deal with and interact with the story and plot, then you won't either and have just skipped to the conclusion for him.

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Shademan's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    raiding wales!
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    sounds like the player wanna win the game, rather than have fun
    Need a setting for your game? a character concept? any gaming related ideas? I make far to many to eat up myself, and therefor I am willing to share them. Free ideas! Get yer fluff here! PM me.


    The friendly neighborhood gentleman perv is always ready to help!

    on M&B:
    Quote Originally Posted by Celesyne
    oh, and looting villages is REALLY good money, if a nearby lord doesn't stop by and give you a daily dose of rape.
    http://baetzler.de/humor/meat_beings.html

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Earthwalker View Post
    I also have to point out one mechanic in the Torg Role playing system, as well as dice it also had cards. One card the Monolouge card was of course brilliant, able to be used by PCs and GM alike. It allowed you to monolouge without anyone taking an action till you had finished, beucase of GM fiat you could also once per session search for it in the deck and play it, worked well in the pulp superhero section of the game world.

    I was going to cite the Nile Empire as a great example of 'No: You can't do that because it wouldn't be cool, so the universe won't let you. Tough.'

    GM pulled that one on us when we tried to interrupt the Gaunt Man during a monologue.

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Shademan View Post
    sounds like the player wanna win the game, rather than have fun
    Which is why I like the option of letting them do so, in the least fun way possible.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Bologna, Italy
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Tavar View Post
    Here's a question; if you're goal is to kill/incapacitate someone, why wouldn't you attack them while their occupied doing something else, say, giving a speech?
    The problem with this way of thinking is that it HAS to go both ways to be consistent.

    So: here's a question: if your goal is to threaten the world with a stolen nuclear warhead, why would you tie Mr. Bond to your laser, say "I expect you to die", and leave, instead of ordering your guards to shoot him multiple times, and take an extra action to put a couple rounds through his already dead skull, just to be sure?

    See? That's what bugs me. If I make things interesting by inviting Mr. Bond to dinner, I expect him to politely accept and "play his role", for the sake of the story, or at least pull of some stunts, but with style.

    Thinking outside the box is cool. Exploting genre-savyness to gain an advantage is not.

    (But this is personal preference, and I am willing to listen to people who think I am wrong. Seriously).

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Shademan's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    raiding wales!
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Jan Mattys View Post
    The problem with this way of thinking is that it HAS to go both ways to be consistent.

    So: here's a question: if your goal is to threaten the world with a stolen nuclear warhead, why would you tie Mr. Bond to your laser, say "I expect you to die", and leave, instead of ordering your guards to shoot him multiple times, and take an extra action to put a couple rounds through his already dead skull, just to be sure?

    See? That's what bugs me. If I make things interesting by inviting Mr. Bond to dinner, I expect him to politely accept and "play his role", for the sake of the story, or at least pull of some stunts, but with style.

    Thinking outside the box is cool. Exploting genre-savyness to gain an advantage is not.

    (But this is personal preference, and I am willing to listen to people who think I am wrong. Seriously).
    We live by the code and we die by the code. Ignore it, and it will chew you up.
    Need a setting for your game? a character concept? any gaming related ideas? I make far to many to eat up myself, and therefor I am willing to share them. Free ideas! Get yer fluff here! PM me.


    The friendly neighborhood gentleman perv is always ready to help!

    on M&B:
    Quote Originally Posted by Celesyne
    oh, and looting villages is REALLY good money, if a nearby lord doesn't stop by and give you a daily dose of rape.
    http://baetzler.de/humor/meat_beings.html

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    BarbarianGuy

    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Out in The Sticks
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Grey McBannert View Post
    This. If he keeps interrupting your monologues, start using it against him. Whenever he starts talking in character, have someone cast Slapping Hand on him.
    wait, hold up, is this an actual spell?

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Titan in the Playground
     
    CarpeGuitarrem's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    If you guys are skilled roleplayers, it doesn't seem to me like the guy is trying to "win". Maybe he's just exploring the idea of being genre-savvy, something like "why does nobody actually think of these things?"

    In that case, it's either A) demonstrate why we invent these tropes or B) justify the tropes in the setting. Using a spell to freeze time for a monologue is a great idea.

    And maybe mix up the villains between realistic ones who have to be taken down right and ones who are arrogant, flaunt their genre, and have the capability to do so.
    Last edited by CarpeGuitarrem; 2010-11-15 at 11:39 AM.
    Ludicrus Gaming: on games and story | My Steam Account
    Quote Originally Posted by Saph
    Unless everyone's been lying to me and the next bunch of episodes are The Great Divide II, The Great Divide III, Return to the Great Divide, and Bride of the Great Divide, in which case I hate you all and I'm never touching Avatar again.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Oracle_Hunter's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    You have two options:

    (1) Ask Mr. X to Play Nice
    You're playing a Heroic Fantasy RPG and not a Deconstruction of the same; BBEGs like to have dramatic speeches and Heroes like to kill Dragons without being Scry-and-Die'd beforehand. By all means feel free to out-savvy BBEGs in the long run, but stop abusing tropes to get a measly Surprise Round.

    (2) Subvert The Tropes
    Keep using Tropes but switch them up enough so that a Dangerously Genre Savvy character wil trip themselves up more often than not. When plotting, this is simplicity itself - just don't make every Vizier Evil. For villains themselves, this really shouldn't be a problem: unless every villain acts the same way (which is boring on its own) you should have some natural variance of Trope usage already.

    Also: why are you granting Surprise Rounds in the midst of a Villain's Speech anyhow? Did the villain not expect to be attacked?
    Lead Designer for Oracle Hunter Games
    Today a Blog, Tomorrow a Business!


    ~ Awesome Avatar by the phantastic Phase ~
    Spoiler
    Show

    Elflad

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Shademan's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    raiding wales!
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    point 3: you can ttake full defense action while talking :D
    Need a setting for your game? a character concept? any gaming related ideas? I make far to many to eat up myself, and therefor I am willing to share them. Free ideas! Get yer fluff here! PM me.


    The friendly neighborhood gentleman perv is always ready to help!

    on M&B:
    Quote Originally Posted by Celesyne
    oh, and looting villages is REALLY good money, if a nearby lord doesn't stop by and give you a daily dose of rape.
    http://baetzler.de/humor/meat_beings.html

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Kurald Galain's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2007

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    "Okay, your attack hits, but it turns out that the bad guy was an illusion, and it dissipates. Twenty feet away, the bad guy appears in a cloud of smoke (or does he?), and continues his monologue."
    Guide to the Magus, the Pathfinder Gish class.

    "I would really like to see a game made by Obryn, Kurald Galain, and Knaight from these forums. I'm not joking one bit. I would buy the hell out of that." -- ChubbyRain
    Crystal Shard Studios - Freeware games designed by Kurald and others!

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Somerville, MA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Jan Mattys View Post
    The problem with this way of thinking is that it HAS to go both ways to be consistent.
    Agreed. You can't run a game with only one genre savvy person or group. It breaks in the way you've witnessed. Ask him to stop out of game or have the rest of your game roll with it. Maybe the villain's friends heard what happened and learn the folly of long speeches.

    There is another option though. Make the villain's speech into something the players want to hear. Of course they're going to kill him if he's babbling. If he has something to say though, they might hold off until he says it. You could even play on this to exploit their genre-savvyness (genre-suave?). Put them in a situation where they have to extract info from a villain, but can't resort to torture. They take advantage of his tendency to give villain speeches and use that to draw the info out of him. The players don't change their behavior and you get to keep giving the speech.
    If you like what I have to say, please check out my GMing Blog where I discuss writing and roleplaying in greater depth.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Oracle_Hunter's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    To be clear: I don't think you should focus on "countering" Mr. X with DM Fiat or things that look like DM Fiat. Obviously punishing him for his Genre Savviness is going to make him upset and provoke a more antagonistic relationship between you two.

    Better to simply structure plots such that Genre Savviness is not always the way to go. If he's the only one abusing Tropes, then when you start varying the Tropes you employ everyone else (who is simply using the story they see) will start looking at Mr. X funny since he's making assumptions which have no basis in the game. When those assumptions turn out to be false, he'll either give up on them (if he had been using Genre Savviness because you ran very Conventional games) or his play style will become marginalized by the rest of the group - not by DM.

    EDIT: Actually, having re-read the OP I wonder if the problem here is that the OP is simply using Tropes rather than understanding them.
    Spoiler
    Show
    For example, the villain invites the PCs to dinner for bribery purposes not because We Can Rule Together is a Tropes but because heroes out for gold & glory can usually be bribed. He doesn't kill them in their sleep because Why Don't Ya Just Shoot Him is a Trope but because he finds assassination dishonorable or he doesn't think he can assassinate the heroes that easily.

    Now, you can run a game where every villain carries a Villain Ball and it can be fun but that only works if everyone involved agrees to play that kind of game. If everyone else (including the OP) is happy with that sort of game, you have to talk to Mr. X about his behavior - it's no different than a PC in a "diplomacy" game running around and killing everyone who opposes him.

    However, if you aspire to DM a more "realistic" game then you need to come up with reasons why things are so. If there are good reasons for your characters to act in a particular way then it will either be harder to destroy them with pure Genre Savviness or their destruction will be perfectly appropriate as Mr. X will be exploiting the Fatal Flaw you gave the villain for just such exploitation.
    Last edited by Oracle_Hunter; 2010-11-15 at 12:08 PM.
    Lead Designer for Oracle Hunter Games
    Today a Blog, Tomorrow a Business!


    ~ Awesome Avatar by the phantastic Phase ~
    Spoiler
    Show

    Elflad

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Tyndmyr's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Maryland
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Im just gonna address the one example actually given, interrupting the monologue with combat.

    It's possible you're overusing the villinous monologue. Sure, it's common, but eventually, any hero with two brain cells to rub together is going to realize that these monologues are the prelude to combat, he already knows the dude is evil, and he may as well shoot first.

    Consider mixing it up. For instance, the monologue during combat. Have his mooks fight the players, while he utilizes spells to speak from safety. The monologue still happens, in an even more awesome setting, as they're killing their way to the bad guy.

    And don't use a monologue too often. It goes from being interesting and thematic, if a bit typical, to being boring. When you have a DM that likes to frequently read off long paragraphs of marginally relevant flavor text, speeches, etc, you can visibly see players tune out. The initiative roll always pulls them back in, though. So...balance it so they don't tune out in the first place, if that's happening.
    Back from a lengthy vacation from Giantitp. I've been dabbling with 3d printer technology and game design, PM if you're curious.

    "World domination is such an ugly phrase. I prefer to call it world optimization."

    New: Tyndmyr has a game shop!

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Bologna, Italy
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Just to clarify: my relationship with Mr. X is not antagonistic in nature. Yet.

    But that's because I grind my teeth everytime he shatters the unwritte rules of drama

    I'm asking for advice and wisdom because I am getting tired of grinding my teeth, of course, but I've been keeping the problem to myself so far, to avoid making mistakes out of my frustration.

    Btw: the other players don't seem to care much about Mr. X's attitude. They didn't pick up his bad habits, but at the same time they see him as a quite efficient fellow and a decision maker, so while they acknowledge he lacks style, they find him useful (something I can understand, after all).

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    GnomePirate

    Join Date
    Oct 2010

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Actually had a similar problem once when I was just a player, we were low level and found the BBEG and CR wise there was no chance of fighting him but during his dramatic monologue a PC acted very in character and attacked, he meant it as a symbolic defiance and didn't even expect to scratch the guy but when he triple critted the dm had to come up with something fast so that we could still have a campaign. Outside of some fumbling in shock that a level 5 paladin just dropped a level 20 vampire the rest of the campaign went great. Very likely your player is trying to play in character but another idea of how to stop him from doing that is to have a duped good guy king there at the dinner who would very likely arrest/execute the character if they try something like that. It would add to the drama and setting if you add likely restrictions where they can still act that way if they want but there are obvious consequences
    May all praise the oh so glorious, oh so benevolent oh so androgynous Sam!

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Banned
    Join Date
    Jul 2010

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by big teej View Post
    wait, hold up, is this an actual spell?
    Yeah. It's in the SC.


    Make the villain's speech into something the players want to hear.

    There's a lot to be said for putting something 100% plot essential in there, near the end. Then when the players 'fail' the entire campaign because they don't know the BBEG's de-activation codes or whatever, you tell them where they screwed up and whose fault it was.

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Somerville, MA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Psyx View Post
    There's a lot to be said for putting something 100% plot essential in there, near the end. Then when the players 'fail' the entire campaign because they don't know the BBEG's de-activation codes or whatever, you tell them where they screwed up and whose fault it was.
    That wasn't quite what I had in mind. If you're going to do it like that, the players need to know that the villain has the codes and that he is the only source who has them. 5 minutes of speech they don't care about followed by 1 sentence that is crucial is not how you make them want to listen.
    If you like what I have to say, please check out my GMing Blog where I discuss writing and roleplaying in greater depth.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Oracle_Hunter's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    Quote Originally Posted by Jan Mattys View Post
    Just to clarify: my relationship with Mr. X is not antagonistic in nature. Yet.

    But that's because I grind my teeth everytime he shatters the unwritte rules of drama
    It kind of sounds like you're relying more on Tropes than is heathy in these games then.

    I mean, it can be dramatic to invoke a Trope from time-to-time, but it usually helps if there's some in-game reason for its invocation. The Gnoll Warchief probably shouldn't spend his time Monologuing while it makes good sense for a Evil Senator to do so. Likewise, villains shouldn't invite heroes to dinner unless the villain has something to gain from it; only the most arrogant BBEG is going to invite an oath-bound killer into his inner sanctum. Likewise, when the BBEG does take such an action, it should be a sign to the Players that the BBEG is an arrogant bastard who considers himself a man of wealth and taste.

    How else does Mr. X foil your plots? If it's literally Genre Savviness (e.g. "The king is murdered? I kill the Chancellor!") then you just need to vary your plotting from time to time; there are plenty of people who may want the king dead - it doesn't always have to be the chancellor.

    Could you elaborate a bit as to the ways Mr. X has foiled you in the past?
    Last edited by Oracle_Hunter; 2010-11-15 at 12:17 PM.
    Lead Designer for Oracle Hunter Games
    Today a Blog, Tomorrow a Business!


    ~ Awesome Avatar by the phantastic Phase ~
    Spoiler
    Show

    Elflad

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    obliged_salmon's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Harrisburg, PA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: Serious Question for veteran RPers and DMs

    In my experience, players like to make an impact, make their own choices, even if they're completely unsure how to go about it properly. Some suggestions, at least for the specific situation of "villainous monologue," include
    A: give info before encountering the bad guy - the bomb under the chair is more interesting to the players if they know it's there.
    B: learn the players' intentions beforehand - do they see the encounter going a certain way? use that as the point of preparation
    i.e. "the dude invites you for dinner. do you go? why or why not?" then you know more or less what to expect
    C: whatever the players' choices, make them matter - they kill your bad guy at the dinner table under parley? show the consequences. they're murderers now. how do they FEEL about that?

    Ultimately, I'd advise looking at the problem from the player's perspective, and working at it from there.

    Hope this helps.
    Proud Happy Biscuit (TM) salesman

    avatar: Fence the gypsy halfling rogue by Sampi

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •