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Geode
06-25-2009, 07:54 PM
A couple months ago, I was in my first DnD group. I was so excited to try it out! Here's the breakdown;
1st & 2nd session-- making characters. I had so much fun just planning out my warlock, his personality, and how his star magic fit into his background. (we had 8 players)
3rd n' 4th session -- We got into the game. We were basically beaten up and dragged onto a ship bound for some distant tropical island. It was slightly bothering me that we were being forced into this story, but I didn't really say anything.
5th session -- Doom! Our party accidentally blew up the world! We covered the world in some sort of dread mist that created blood-thirsty monsters at night. By now, I was sort of feeling... crushed... under the storyline. Not only did we not have any elbow room to make choices if it didn't go along with the main story, but now we destroyed civilization as we knew it... No going to town anymore.

Up 'till now, he had been talking to me in a chat room after I went home after the game sessions. He would ask me what I thought of his game. I was pretty guarded in my responses even though he told me to be critical; I had resolved to be completely positive. After all, I was the newbie -- What did I know?
When he mentioned that the mist would remain for at least half of the storyline, I related my concerns to him. He was surprised that I felt that way.

6th session -- Pretty much, our characters found a magic stone that purged the world of all mist. Can you say Deus Ex Machina? I'm sure he did that just to please me... but I felt like such a jerk for bringing it up.

A couple days after the session, we were all talking at school. One of the players had made a backup bard character just in case her paladin died.The DM took it as a sign that she didn't like her current character and wanted to start up as a bard. He said that he'd be able to kill off her character with the storyline. She gave a negative response. He started to joke about it. The rest of us gave a firm negative response. He continued to foster the idea and he made fun of us for getting so defensive.
Well, I'll just say things got awkward. Eventually our group disbanded. >_<


In the end, I feel like there's something to be learned for both DMs and Players. Since I'm going to take the roll of DM in a couple days, I feel like I should take a moment to take note of what went so wrong as to kill the game.

-- Taking away the players' power to make choices in the name of the main quest can make things less fun. If the DM uses too much power, then he/she might as well be controlling the characters. >_>

--It's important to communicate what's going on so that there's no mistaking what you mean.

--Make sure that others can tell when you're roll playing and when you're not, or when you're joking/not.

--Most of all, it's just a game. It's meant to be fun! If it's not, let the DM know. If it's just not your kind of game, you don't have to keep playing.


So... Now that I've made my contribution to the ever-growing tome "Tales of DnD Fail," I've got some concise questions to ask the general public.

What would you like to add to the DM/Player Advice list? What actions have you or someone else done to kill a game? Was it on purpose? >=D

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
06-25-2009, 08:23 PM
Well, had a DM that favored a player, his brother, so i waited till the big ending of a particular module. It was obvious, to me, anyway, that doing the wrong thing would kill the party, So good ole Thoth did that very thing: killed the party. Damn the DM was pisses. My response: Sucks doesn't it! Next time quit favoring your brother. DM tried to get the rest of the group on his side, to no avail. We never played there again. This was 10 years ago this year.

cigamnogard
06-25-2009, 08:34 PM
Well, had a DM that favored a player, his brother, so i waited till the big ending of a particular module. It was obvious, to me, anyway, that doing the wrong thing would kill the party, So good ole Thoth did that very thing: killed the party.

:eek::eek::eek::eek::laugh:

Geode
06-25-2009, 08:42 PM
Well, had a DM that favored a player, his brother, so i waited till the big ending of a particular module. It was obvious, to me, anyway, that doing the wrong thing would kill the party, So good ole Thoth did that very thing: killed the party. Damn the DM was pisses. My response: Sucks doesn't it! Next time quit favoring your brother. DM tried to get the rest of the group on his side, to no avail. We never played there again. This was 10 years ago this year.
Oh wow! *LOL* Nice work! Great example of "don't piss off the players"

Razmus
06-25-2009, 08:42 PM
<snip>
3rd n' 4th session -- We got into the game. We were basically beaten up and dragged onto a ship bound for some distant tropical island. It was slightly bothering me that we were being forced into this story, but I didn't really say anything.
<snip>
-- Taking away the players' power to make choices in the name of the main quest can make things less fun. If the DM uses too much power, then he/she might as well be controlling the characters. >_>

I'm not a good GM, but am trying to learn to be better.
To take this one element and run tangent with it:
If a GM plans an adventure, or even several possible adventures, but they all require the players to take a ship, or agree to rescue the princess, or agree to fight off the dragon/bandits/pirates and save the village, and they don't want to, what should the GM do?

cigamnogard
06-25-2009, 08:43 PM
3rd n' 4th session -- We got into the game. We were basically beaten up and dragged onto a ship bound for some distant tropical island. It was slightly bothering me that we were being forced into this story, but I didn't really say anything.

Sounds like a good Conan adventure!


5th session -- Doom! Our party accidentally blew up the world! We covered the world in some sort of dread mist that created blood-thirsty monsters at night. By now, I was sort of feeling... crushed... under the storyline. Not only did we not have any elbow room to make choices if it didn't go along with the main story, but now we destroyed civilization as we knew it... No going to town anymore.


Not so good adventure but the End of Days can be cool...



6th session -- Pretty much, our characters found a magic stone that purged the world of all mist. Can you say Deus Ex Machina? I'm sure he did that just to please me... but I felt like such a jerk for bringing it up.


Ah, sounds not so good.


A couple days after the session, we were all talking at school. One of the players had made a backup bard character just in case her paladin died.The DM took it as a sign that she didn't like her current character and wanted to start up as a bard. He said that he'd be able to kill off her character with the storyline. She gave a negative response. He started to joke about it. The rest of us gave a firm negative response. He continued to foster the idea and he made fun of us for getting so defensive.
Well, I'll just say things got awkward. Eventually our group disbanded.

Really not so good. Well, to be honest I would take it as a lesson in DM'ing - you know what he did wrong - do not make those same mistakes.
Good luck and above all have fun with your group.

Q-man
06-25-2009, 08:48 PM
I think you've nailed the key advice with communication amongst the group. The whole point of the game is to have fun, if its not fun then either the DM or the players need to make some adjustments.

Its a fine line to was as the DM. On one hand you've plotted out this story you'd like to tell; and on the other you have the players who have these characters with their opinions that they want to play. It takes a bit of skill to get them to follow along the story path you've written without making them feel forced.

A lot of the time you have to come up with ways to give them the illusion of choice, but still be forcing them down your path. Kinda like putting them at a fork in the road, but make both paths loop around to the same destination. The players feel like they've made a decision, but really you were directed them all along.

The real trick from what I've seen is getting together a good group. Seems like all it takes is one player hogging the spotlight to ruin the group. Which is basically what Thoth was referring to. Either the DM puts them front and center or the player just always jumps in and takes over. If your players know when to step in and out of center stage the group will last a long long time.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I'm not a good GM, but am trying to learn to be better.
To take this one element and run tangent with it:
If a GM plans an adventure, or even several possible adventures, but they all require the players to take a ship, or agree to rescue the princess, or agree to fight off the dragon/bandits/pirates and save the village, and they don't want to, what should the GM do?

You're basically stuck at that point. You just have to explain it to your players that this is the adventure you have prepared, we can either play it or give me a couple of weeks to rewrite it.

If you can talk your players into explaining what they have in mind to do, often you'll be able to retool the adventure to suit them. You can save the encounters, just change the setting from taking a boat to saving a princess to; to assaulting a castle/dungeon (where ever the princess was) in the hopes of acquiring some great treasure.

You'll still have some rewriting to do, but adapting an adventure is a lot easier than starting over from scratch.

cigamnogard
06-25-2009, 09:02 PM
I'm not a good GM, but am trying to learn to be better.
To take this one element and run tangent with it:
If a GM plans an adventure, or even several possible adventures, but they all require the players to take a ship, or agree to rescue the princess, or agree to fight off the dragon/bandits/pirates and save the village, and they don't want to, what should the GM do?

Let them do what they want...try this though:
What is in it for the players?
Land?
Loot?
Life = let's say for example if they do not rescue the princess the king sends out his guard to kill the party

Geode
06-25-2009, 09:32 PM
I'm not a good GM, but am trying to learn to be better.
To take this one element and run tangent with it:
If a GM plans an adventure, or even several possible adventures, but they all require the players to take a ship, or agree to rescue the princess, or agree to fight off the dragon/bandits/pirates and save the village, and they don't want to, what should the GM do?
That's a good point. It's something that should be used sparingly though. In the game I was playing, he wouldn't let us even try to find a way off the island, we couldn't look for help from the local tribes. The only way we were allowed to go was towards the altar at the top of the volcano. They were reasonable things to do, but for the sake of the story we couldn't do them. I could see some discrete ways he could have sent us back to the altar using our ideas, but he decided to strong-hand us through the story.

I dunno... On one hand, we should be trying to help the DM by following along. On the other hand we want to think for ourselves.

mrken
06-25-2009, 09:48 PM
So... Now that I've made my contribution to the ever-growing tome "Tales of DnD Fail," I've got some concise questions to ask the general public.

What would you like to add to the DM/Player Advice list? What actions have you or someone else done to kill a game? Was it on purpose? >=D


Well, most of us old time GM's know that players want about 1000 gold pieces every game night they play. The old 100 gold just no longer cuts it with modern players. 100 gold just ain't what it was just a few years ago.

Players also want at least one magic item per game session, each. Don't ruin their fun and run a game that doesn't have enough magic in it. Everyone knows that magic is cool and the more the better, at least for the PC's.

And each session needs at least 90% combat where the PC's kill at least fifty high level monsters, unless they are dragons, then one each might do it.

And they all want to kill the king as marry the daughter/son and rule the kingdom so make sure there are at least enough offspring to go around and the kingdom is large enough.

Ok, now that I got that out of the way, the real stuff for the real players. The kids want all of what I have mentioned, but most role players want some role play, some combat, some choices and some impact.

My game is very open. Yes I do have some main story lines floating about, but it is not uncommon for the PC's to blow off everything I have worked months for to decide to so some mundane little thing I never expected. That's ok, as long as the PC's decided that is what they want to do. The challenge to the GM is to make going to the store for a gallon of milk exciting. lol No matter what you do, let the PC's do what they want. Then do what you can to make the game fun. Yes, it is hard for the GM to do sometimes and players complain there is too much combat in this session and not enough combat in that session and there is never enough treasure in any of them.

As for asking the Players what they want, well I have opinions on that. If they want me to run modules they need to give me the module, paid for not with my money. And module after module after module is fine, but not for me. And if they want me to run a game that goes by a formula they write I would rather they run it themselves as I might not run it the way they want it run. I let the players run their characters as they wish, in my world. I just try to keep one step ahead of them, if they let me know where they intend to go. If they don't, well, in my opinion the game does suffer some from lack of planning, but I don't read their minds or the characters minds, just the NPC's minds.

Deadone
06-25-2009, 10:26 PM
To me it sounds like the DM is trying too hard with the Doomsday drama. They need to work more on the story and slowly work into something of that type of magnitude.
Perhaps let someone else DM for a few months and give him/her a break.

wizarddog
06-26-2009, 01:25 AM
Well...destroying the world is kinda crazy, epsecially if you were not prepared for it.

I like to know what I am in store for when I make a character. With the world destroyed, I think my ranks in profession went down the toliet.;)

RoryN
06-26-2009, 03:04 AM
The communication aspect is very important, at least to me. But if I had a problem with a DM, or someone had a problem with the way I did something as DM, we would always try and talk about it "out" of the group. Sometimes it was the whole group who got into the discussions, sometimes it was just one or two people and the DM, but we tried very hard not to let it distract from our game time.

Some people take it far too seriously and lose sight that it is just a game afterall. I did that early on in my D&D career, and I learned quickly to just let things go and have fun. When something really bothered me, I'd say something, but most of the time, I was just along for the ride and having fun.

This group sounds like there may have been some less experienced players in it? Maybe I'm reading too much into it being your first group, but I am wondering how much experience the DM had. Enabling the characters to be able to destroy the world on thier 5th meeting seems a bit odd to me. Even when my old group was adventuring with characters in the 15-18 level range, never did they have a chance to do something on that kind of scale. Maybe kill a lesser demon or two, or a middle-aged dragon, but never "world threatening" actions.

Oldgamer
06-26-2009, 09:38 AM
Being the DM is walking a fine line, you have a world to play with whether it be homebrew or published. You have created a scenario, or are following one in a module. Here's the tough part: How to keep the PC's on the storyline without actually railroading the game like your DM did.

Dragonlance often would give subtle hints when getting off track, to use a published series of modules as an example. In DL1, the first module, the party was leaving their hometown of Solace with smatterings of info telling them of a direction to head that might be useful to their goals. In the module, if the group got more than a few miles off track to the north, they would encounter increasingly larger number of the evil dragonarmies ... hinting that they were heading towards a problem and not a solution. Eventually, the mod said, if they go 20 miles too far north, they encounter the front line of the entire army as it camps in wait for the next days march ... right towards the heroes!

There has to be a middle ground where the players still have room to move, make decisions, breathe, etc ... but truth be told .. their is a plot to stick to. If the world is too open and the PC's can do anything they want, the game often tends to get chaotic, out of hand, and has no goal in sight; often times becoming just a dungeon crawl whether in an actual dungeon or not ... kill monster for xp, loot it's treasure ... repeat ...

Razmus
06-26-2009, 09:59 AM
Dragonlance often would give subtle hints when getting off track, to use a published series of modules as an example. In DL1, the first module, the party was leaving their hometown of Solace with smatterings of info telling them of a direction to head that might be useful to their goals. In the module, if the group got more than a few miles off track to the north, they would encounter increasingly larger number of the evil dragonarmies ... hinting that they were heading towards a problem and not a solution. Eventually, the mod said, if they go 20 miles too far north, they encounter the front line of the entire army as it camps in wait for the next days march ... right towards the heroes!
Actually Dragonlance sticks in my mind as one of the more egregious examples of railroading from my High School days. Apparently if you'd read the books, players would have a pretty good idea of what we were suppose to do. I hadn't. Only one of the players had, and he would frequently attempt to keep us away from 'the one true path.' We would always find ourselves firmly put back on the 'correct' path. It wasn't my regular gaming group, and I stuck it out until the end of the campaign, but we lost half the players within a couple months. It's one of examples I keep in my mind, and I'm sure a lot of it was that we were rebellious teenagers rather than any failing of the modules itself. But I guess it does go back to: figuring out a path for the players if they don't choose to follow the path plotted out in the module or planned adventure.

I did discover what happens to a cockroach in a microwave at one game session though.

Oldgamer
06-26-2009, 10:10 AM
Actually Dragonlance sticks in my mind as one of the more egregious examples of railroading from my High School days. Apparently if you'd read the books, players would have a pretty good idea of what we were suppose to do. I hadn't. Only one of the players had, and he would frequently attempt to keep us away from 'the one true path.' We would always find ourselves firmly put back on the 'correct' path. It wasn't my regular gaming group, and I stuck it out until the end of the campaign, but we lost half the players within a couple months. It's one of examples I keep in my mind, and I'm sure a lot of it was that we were rebellious teenagers rather than any failing of the modules itself. But I guess it does go back to: figuring out a path for the players if they don't choose to follow the path plotted out in the module or planned adventure.

I did discover what happens to a cockroach in a microwave at one game session though.


Yeah, that's why I said there needs to be a middle ground. There's a story to follow ... just how do you do it and allow the players freedom as well? In most cases, if there is a plot to the campaign ... a little railroading will have to be done, even if it's in something as cheesy as dropping a solid note found on a dead body giving obvious clues. Often times characters aren't played to their true stats; the physical stats are easy to roleplay, but Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma are not often played very well. A rogue with an Int score of 12 being played by someone with a 180 IQ ... or vice versa ... a Wizard with an Int score of 18 being played by someone with average IQ. Sometimes the player doesn't get what the character would, or the other direction would almost be metagaming. And sometimes clues are just missed entirely ... either due to bad rolls or something a player didn't think of. So hints must be dropped from time to time or the game could go stagnant or chaotic, depending on the player's personalities.

Lucian-Sunaka
06-26-2009, 11:20 AM
In response to all this talk regarding players who go off the beaten path, here's the best advice I could give a DM. Roll with it. Maybe it's 'chaotic' at times, but my campaigns are entirely about the players choice. I give them plenty of little action sequences, interactions and random plothooks without any personal forethought into what they will turn into, and let the players react accordingly.

From there, things just expand into an adventure, the meeting with whoever leads into an adventure, or they end up chasing the street urchin that picked their pocket, or they kill said urchin and the town guard come after them, the sky's the limit. (Literally lol, one time my players ended up saving Sky Island from an Effigy Master in a Sonic the Hedgehog 3 inspired campaign)

I don't know how many DM's are able to do it that way, but I advise you try to learn at least a little of that style for use when your written adventures get ignored. It can suck having your work ignored, it's happened to me in other media, but the best thing to do is to find a way to reach your audience, even if what you made isn't what they want.

Harwel
06-26-2009, 11:32 AM
In response to all this talk regarding players who go off the beaten path, here's the best advice I could give a DM. Roll with it. Maybe it's 'chaotic' at times, but my campaigns are entirely about the players choice. I give them plenty of little action sequences, interactions and random plothooks without any personal forethought into what they will turn into, and let the players react accordingly.

From there, things just expand into an adventure, the meeting with whoever leads into an adventure, or they end up chasing the street urchin that picked their pocket, or they kill said urchin and the town guard come after them, the sky's the limit. (Literally lol, one time my players ended up saving Sky Island from an Effigy Master in a Sonic the Hedgehog 3 inspired campaign)

I don't know how many DM's are able to do it that way, but I advise you try to learn at least a little of that style for use when your written adventures get ignored. It can suck having your work ignored, it's happened to me in other media, but the best thing to do is to find a way to reach your audience, even if what you made isn't what they want.

Honestly, I've found that giving your players a lot of freedom makes GMing a lot easier when you inevitably start getting writer's block for a session or two. Letting the players do their thing will invariably give you an idea, and they write their own adventure to an extent. One thing you can be sure of is that your players are doing more or less what they want, and happy players stick around.

Q-man
06-26-2009, 12:26 PM
In response to all this talk regarding players who go off the beaten path, here's the best advice I could give a DM. Roll with it. Maybe it's 'chaotic' at times, but my campaigns are entirely about the players choice. I give them plenty of little action sequences, interactions and random plothooks without any personal forethought into what they will turn into, and let the players react accordingly.

From there, things just expand into an adventure, the meeting with whoever leads into an adventure, or they end up chasing the street urchin that picked their pocket, or they kill said urchin and the town guard come after them, the sky's the limit. (Literally lol, one time my players ended up saving Sky Island from an Effigy Master in a Sonic the Hedgehog 3 inspired campaign)

I don't know how many DM's are able to do it that way, but I advise you try to learn at least a little of that style for use when your written adventures get ignored. It can suck having your work ignored, it's happened to me in other media, but the best thing to do is to find a way to reach your audience, even if what you made isn't what they want.

This is certainly an option if you are really good at improvising things. For a newer GM its tough to pull this off since you'll have to flip through a lot of books to pick out the pieces and stats that you need.

Sometimes playing in a big sandbox world like that can be a lot of fun. Personally though I like a story with a bit more structure to it. I've found that players left one their own often have such diverse goals that its a wonder the characters stick together. With a story they all have some fixed goal, so regardless of character personality they have a reason to work together.

The bottom line is that you have to have a style that works with your players. You can't force them to follow the scheme you have in mind, if they want to go somewhere else you have to let them. So regardless of what you have planned out, you still need to be ready for them to go the wrong way.

Lucian-Sunaka
06-26-2009, 12:31 PM
Agreed Q-man. Though honestly, for my personal reasons, I've got no problem with party turmoil. Players will play their character's personality and goals to the best of their ability.

How many times have you guys had characters with really interesting backstories and plans for the character that never happened because there was a general plot to the campaign? In my games, characters pursue what they wish. Either they successfully bring the other characters with them, or they leave the party (and the action until the party has finished what their working on at that time) to do their own thing.

I run things on on one (or for a small group) for them, we complete it, etc etc. It requires alot of personal involvement from the DM, but in my mind its ok, I'm not burning hours and hours a week planning my campaigns, so I can afford to give my players a few more hours of devotion at game time.

CobraKai
06-26-2009, 01:56 PM
I had a DM that was notorious for putting you against monsters or in situations that you had no way of getting out alive. Then when he figured out that you're character had no hope of survival then some miraculous Hero or chain of events would take place so you could survive. He was great at making up adventures but sometimes well most of the time you could'nt survive his game without his devine intervention. And that isn't a DM's role in my opinion. They are to give you the adventure but let you have the choice of what your character does and not use the game to force you to game the way they want the game to go.

cigamnogard
06-26-2009, 04:59 PM
It's all about EL sometimes.
However, I stand by my last post.

tesral
06-29-2009, 10:51 AM
I make it clear fro mthe start where the game is going. If I wanteda post doomsday game, I would tell the players ,and start after the "big event" not drag them through it. In video gaming they call it a cut scene. You don't have anything to do but go along for the ride. Why give the illusion of choice?

I prefer keeping things open. Right now I'm running a city game. The characters are members of a gang in a chaotic and uncareing world. The yare trying to protect the negiborhood they live in and the residents from those that would rob and kill, including the ones with badges.

Goals? Get everyone light, water, and sanitation. Make the corporations play nice and treat their workers well. It's a world where people would rather work for Klicka Klicka Zoom Zoom than Ironshield because Kaizzzs kills fewer workers a month in industrial accidents.

They are not a powerful faction currently, although that has been changing. They have by negotiation and judicious fighting managed to unite the Southwest side of the city.

However they have nothing to do with the meta plot. Some events will proceed without them as they should. Recent die rolls have indicated that His Luminance the 47th is due to die of a terrible shaving accident that nearly decapitates him. The characters will get news of this of course, but they will have nothing to do with it, and it is unlikely to affect them in the least.


Hmmm, I sense a plot here with a bit of Imperial connections. Time to fire up Open Office.

Baldwin Stonewood
06-29-2009, 01:55 PM
I like to provide the group with a theme first: currently pirates/seabased and that evil is permitted but not required in pc alignments. Then, I like to create several story arcs within the campaign that tie into the overall theme. Within each story arc, I prepare a half dozen or so mini stories/adventures depending on what the players choose to do. For instance, the players can choose which direction they want to go - or which, of several, job opportunities they want to do. Depending on their choices certain scenarios open up or close down to them.

I always have several side stories created and easily dropped into the game, if the players choose to do something totally unexpected. This also limits the frantic rolling up of new random encounters, NPCs or monsters by the DM. Basically, I know the backdrop of my campaign world better then the players do, so its not too hard to have a couple filler scenarios in my pocket.

Ultimately, I do like there to be an overall theme and story. I prefer a beginning, middle and end from the preparation point of view. I enjoy all the time that I spend developing the game.

tesral
06-29-2009, 07:29 PM
Plots take two basic directions. Reactive and proactive. City game has both. the PCs decide on goals and seek to carry them out, proactive. An event happens they react to, reactive.

cigamnogard
06-30-2009, 05:46 PM
I aslo appreciate the GM informing us what kind of campaign we, the players, are in. You work towards a Dread Pirate but never get to get out of the harbour as you are in a city campaign for example.

WhiteTiger
07-08-2009, 11:27 AM
There are just too many scenarios over the past 25 years to list as far as what can kill a game. Although It can be generally ruled down to a couple of reasons. 1. Personality clash or 2. Personality defect.

list of possibilities:

1. GM Railroading (Personality defect)
2. GM vs player argument (usually over rules) (Personality clash)
3. GM vs player argument (personality clash results due to one-upmanship
& poor quips which result in insults, bloodletting, etc.)
4. GM-player favoritism (causes Personality clash with other players)
5. player vs player (rules argument) (personality clash ensues)
6. player vs player (personality clash results due to one-upmanship & poor
quips which result in insults, blood-letting, etc.)

the list can go on and on but you get the idea.. :biggrin:

Grandore The Giant Killer
07-08-2009, 12:44 PM
Well for one thing your DM pretty much made the game pointless. I mean he took away your freedom of choice! This is the beauty part of D&D the ability to choose and do what you want. If you want to walk up to a king and kick him in the groin then go for it! Not saying that he'll be too pleased about it but hey I have yet to see a video game with that option available. And as far as him killing off that player's Paladin he was an idiot for assuming she wanted it dead. He should have absolutely talked to her about it first to gain permission.

cigamnogard
07-08-2009, 05:54 PM
Well for one thing your DM pretty much made the game pointless.

Bingo

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
07-08-2009, 08:10 PM
Bingo +1

cigamnogard
07-08-2009, 09:22 PM
LOL Bingo +2

Dark
07-08-2009, 09:27 PM
:confused:

WhiskeyFur
07-09-2009, 02:37 PM
Something I've found that works is if your going to railroad the players, let them know about it! Explain that the storyline you have in mind, it could work but it requires you to put them into an uncomfortable situation where they won't have as much freedom as they might have enjoyed before.

I've found most players are reasonable enough that if they know about it ahead of time, there isn't so many hard feelings.

I played a kender to the hilt one time when that situation came up ad the DM didn't bother to ask if it was ok. He just did it.

He was trying for the doom and gloom scenario where we're all dreading where we're getting taken. Not my kender.

Kender: Oh, are those chains? Great! I never been in chains before, can I be first?

The DM sat there a few moments, stunned while the rest of the players were laughing their tails off. Several times he tried to make it seem hopeless and my kender would just absolutely ruin it for him. He finally gave up on that storyline after a couple hours.

Then we went back and kicked those pirate's asses from one end of the world to the other, which is what he wanted us to do anyways!

cigamnogard
07-09-2009, 04:02 PM
Now that's an opptimist!

templeorder
07-09-2009, 10:26 PM
I had a GM who ramrodded us into the story, never let us choose any direction, and even bragged that some characters were set to die (we all had 2 - dual story line in 2 geo locations). I tried to get my character killed by stupid actions and all i did was fail, but it was the GM's wife and best friend that got all the glory. Needless to say, it lasted a few months before i confronted the GM and the game fell apart.

Oldgamer
07-10-2009, 11:52 AM
I had a GM who ramrodded us into the story, never let us choose any direction, and even bragged that some characters were set to die (we all had 2 - dual story line in 2 geo locations). I tried to get my character killed by stupid actions and all i did was fail, but it was the GM's wife and best friend that got all the glory. Needless to say, it lasted a few months before i confronted the GM and the game fell apart.



That's horrible dude. The GM needed to be confronted, that's the worst case of railroading I think I've ever heard. I hate to walk into an existing group of friends as a stranger ... they always stick together regardless of logic or rules ... you usually feel like an outsider.

cigamnogard
07-10-2009, 03:02 PM
That does suck!

Grandore The Giant Killer
07-10-2009, 03:28 PM
Thank god my DM believes in freedom and instead of just doing 1 story he does realms. If everyone starts complaining that the realm we're playing in is getting boring then he simply changes realms and has the proverbial giant hand pick us up through a portal and plop us into the game. That's how the game we've been playing has lasted for 4 years and is still going strong. Also he doesn't entirely play 100% by the rules seeing as how he takes aspects from all books he owns and combines it into one game that the other players seem happy with. He figures that "The rules state that I run the game. Technically that means I can do whatever I see fit and if I don't like a rule then I don't have to use it."

Another reason why our games are so succesful is because he doesn't play favorites. If you are a noob or a vet he'll attempt to run you through that proverbial gauntlet. He figures that if you are a noob and you can take the heat then you're a good player.

cigamnogard
07-10-2009, 03:44 PM
Thank god my DM believes in freedom and instead of just doing 1 story he does realms. If everyone starts complaining that the realm we're playing in is getting boring then he simply changes realms and has the proverbial giant hand pick us up through a portal and plop us into the game. That's how the game we've been playing has lasted for 4 years and is still going strong. Also he doesn't entirely play 100% by the rules seeing as how he takes aspects from all books he owns and combines it into one game that the other players seem happy with. He figures that "The rules state that I run the game. Technically that means I can do whatever I see fit and if I don't like a rule then I don't have to use it."

Another reason why our games are so succesful is because he doesn't play favorites. If you are a noob or a vet he'll attempt to run you through that proverbial gauntlet. He figures that if you are a noob and you can take the heat then you're a good player.
Glad that works for you but I hate house rules. I like to go to the book when in doubt and then have the DM rule if it is not clear.