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Reason&Truth
06-10-2011, 05:25 PM
So, I've been DM'ing a game of DnD 3.5 for a group of local friends. None of them truly know the rules and I've offered to teach but they all find some way to put it off. They wished to play an evil campaign (keep in mind they've never played before) and I didn't want to hamper the situation by telling them it was rough to do that with no prior game exp.

So far all they've done is burn towns, kill people for no reason, and sought out combat at any cost. One of the characters literally challenged an entire Metropolis city guard, said if his character died he would stop playing (consequently, meaning the whole group), and blamed it all on his character's "personality". He got fiat'd out of the situation.

Things have only gotten worse since with them recently taking over a small thorp at level 10, expecting no repercussions. I don't know how to handle the situation, seeing how this the only group in my town. So here I am asking very, very humbly: What do I do? :confused:

Q-man
06-10-2011, 11:39 PM
My suggestion would be that its not worth playing in that group. If ever a player told me "I'm going to do this ridiculous that should kill my character, but if he dies I'm quitting the game", I'd be sure his character died in the attempt. There's a certain amount of craziness you can let happen during a game, but you have to draw the line somewhere.

Its important that the players be able to direct the campaign to some extent, but it needs to be done in character. I would not tolerate a player trying to derail or take over the campaign with meta gaming or entirely out of character like that. At that point the game would no longer be fun for me. The bottom line is: If you're not having fun then you shouldn't play. So you need to ask yourself if you're still enjoying the game, if not then its time to leave.

It sucks that there aren't any other groups you could get involved in. I'm actually surprised to hear that theres nothing else out there. Poke around on here a bit and ask around at the local hobby shops, you might get lucky and discover another group you didn't know existed. If that doesn't work then I'd suggest having a go at an online game, there's tons of those starting up that are advertising for new players on here. As you're already a DM its not out of the question to start one yourself I suppose.

wizarddog
06-11-2011, 12:16 AM
Well, you seem to have gotten involved with a hedonist bunch of role-players who seem to have lost the spirit of the game. If one player basically states he will stop playing when his character dies, that seems to be good indication he does not take the game as serious as you do. If said player never has to fear his character will die, then he will do whatever he wants. I don't know if the group is having any fun with the game BUT IF YOU ARE NOT, then your wasting your time and energy.

Now if you want to keep playing and looking for what to do then you have to do the following:
1. Stop having them allowing them to disrupt lawful societies.
Make up societies and civilization you could give a rats arse about. If they were good guys slaying goblins in a cave you would not have given it a second thought. Make the area more remote so they don't encounter those area or make those places hard-arse evil societies themselves being run by a half-fiend tyrant.

2. Consequences decided by their actions, not a reaction to their behavior.
They took over the small thorp--good, now everything that happens to the thorp is their responsibility. They kill the local blacksmith? "Oh well, I guess you guys can't getting any new weapons or equipment. The only blacksmith was killed." Having situations result from their decisions. "The Ogre bandits from the north heard their is trouble brewing in the small thorp, so they go and start making raids on the town. You guys once had a nice vineyard..now it looks like it is burning." "The local healer has been slain, unfortunately, he was the only one seriously fighting the plague that has been sweeping the region. People are getting sick and dying. You don't care? Who is going to tend the fields and how are you going to get your gold from your taxes?"

3. Always have someone who is more badarse than the PCs.
Thats what villains are about. He can be good or evil-it doesn't matter. And he need only be there for the duration of the adventure (i.e. don't fall in love with him-but make the players think you did ;) Players like killing off the DM's badarse and the tougher the fight, the more rewarding.

4. Encounters are encounters. It doesn't matter what alignment. Being evil does not mean weak good creatures are your only encounters. Evil organizations, thieves guilds, monster hoards, orc tribes, evil dragons are all still nasty encounters. And if you do send good creatures at them, then you need angles, celestials, half-celestials, and archons to send up arse whooping.

5. Don't bother threatening them with death of their characters.
It obviously doesn't work. Threaten them by losing power and wealth. That's why they are playing evil in the first place: power and wealth. Reward them for going after that and not for slaying innocents and the dregs of society. Don't even bother rolling dice if they want to kill a town guardsman or serf. Describe the quick scene and be done with it. If they complain, tell them when they are ready to fight real challenges and do some real playing, you will roll your dice.

5. Don't railroad (seriously).
Part of the idea of an evil PC is you don't have to follow the script of being the good guy. So you may approach something totally differently because you have no scruples. They may want to talk to the wizard that kidnapped the dukes daughter to try an go in cahoots with him; later betraying him at the right moment. They may allow a town to be overrun by undead creatures and follow behind raiding houses and looting bodies as the army marches on. They may join the local thieves guild, slay its leaders and take over the entire operation. Those are interesting adventures/stories you can work with.

6. YOU MUST FUN.
This is a wasted exercise if you feel miserable about being a DM. If this is not the campaign you feel you can run then you need to give it up. However, if by my suggestions, you think of some new types of encounters and adventures, then you should change your strategy. Try looking at a published module and think about what would happen if you changed things a bit. What would these evil players do if presented with the tomb of horrors or other high level adventure. What would their motivation be if not to destroy evil?

Hope that helps.

Reason&Truth
06-12-2011, 12:04 PM
Thanks so much for the help! The ideas to take away power and wealth worked IMMENSELY. When one of the characters got subdued, he lost a very precious magical item. He replied by saying "So if, every time I get caught or challenged, I lose an item?" His face -> :eek: was priceless when I said: "Most likely, be glad he wasn't a spell caster, chances are you would end up with a negative level.. or stat drain"

The table near-instantaneously got serious when threatened at that level. The rest of the night was fun as the players conducted sly plots to get back the item, AND revenge on the man who stole the item. Hopefully things might stay this way! Even if they don't this kinda revitalized my passion for this game. I gotta admit, they were pretty freaking creative.

nijineko
06-12-2011, 05:55 PM
guess it shows which is the more dire, death or taxes... ;D

rabkala
06-13-2011, 09:18 PM
wizarddog gave some very good advice.

Why are they evil? That is the question. Many players want to play evil alignments to give them flexibility and freedom in the game world. It can be a response to sadistic controlling DM's and railroading. They say, "You can't motivate me with that normal junk. I'm sick of rescuing the stupid townsfolk and saving the princess just because it's the 'good' thing to do!" Some want to play evil due to immaturity and a real lack of knowledge of true evil. Real world evil is easy to ignore when it becomes a cartoonish caricature in the game. Often times people just want to blow off steam and break the shackles of their real life prison. I know when Gary down in accounting shuts down my project, I want to go thrash him around his office and hang him in the courtyard. Of course I can't get away with that in real life world, but may be able to in the game world. I suppose there are tons of reasons, but you can combat it if you figure out the 'why'.

Keep them goal oriented, with an adventure that suits them, so they don't have the time to sit around and act stupid. If it gets worse again, make the world a horrible place (more evil than the players can be). Play it "evil stupid", it will get dull and empty after a while. Use them against each other (they will gladly stab each other in the back if the reward is great enough). Or you could start creating rules to govern everything from hand-jobs in the tavern to ED when they try to rape the orc prisoners...

Reason&Truth
06-13-2011, 09:42 PM
@ rabkala: I've talked to them about why they wanna be evil, and their answer left me saddened. It seems that they've played Fable one too many times and think the only 'evil' is the guy who goes around and kills people like an idiot. After trying to explain that in certain cosmologies of DnD, Good and Evil are actual forces that bless, corrupt, and fight constantly, rather than notions, ideas, or labels; they kind of got the picture. Even still, they didn't care to play a 'serious' game.

@nijineko: Taxes, by the gods, taxes ;)

Sascha
06-13-2011, 10:13 PM
Even still, they didn't care to play a 'serious' game.
If that conflicts with what you want to run, you're not likely to find compromise. In-game behavior modifications have, in my experience, never worked; easier to let the game die, than try to fight play style differences with little common ground, especially after you've talked with them on their expectations.

wizarddog
06-14-2011, 05:28 AM
@ rabkala: I've talked to them about why they wanna be evil, and their answer left me saddened. It seems that they've played Fable one too many times and think the only 'evil' is the guy who goes around and kills people like an idiot. After trying to explain that in certain cosmologies of DnD, Good and Evil are actual forces that bless, corrupt, and fight constantly, rather than notions, ideas, or labels; they kind of got the picture. Even still, they didn't care to play a 'serious' game.

I'm glad from your previous post you got something out of them with the plotting. You don't have to play a "serious game" in order to have fun. In fact, for an evil game, I would never take it seriously--it would drive me batty. I personally would for at least one adventure, show them what REAL EVIL is. And not the Orcus or Asmodeus evil. I am talking Tharizudun, Ghaundaur and other Far Realm Gods that are just foul and insane.

cplmac
06-15-2011, 11:17 AM
Could always keep them on their toes and now that they have done all these evil acts, they are being hunted by a large force of knights and paladins. The paladins could have holy weapons that do extra damage to evil aligned foes. Imagine their surprise when they walk into a town that this force has arrived at before them. The ruler of a large and very strong and wealthy kingdom would certainly find out about this group and would want to take measures to ensure that they don't try to start doing thier actions in that kingdom as well.

Another possibility could be that a rival thieves guild of the one that you said they joined could be aggressively trying to eliminate their guild.

nijineko
06-18-2011, 02:40 AM
i would be for the forces of law and order starting to hunt the law breakers down angle for a while, myself.

Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
06-18-2011, 08:32 AM
My suggestion would be that its not worth playing in that group. If ever a player told me "I'm going to do this ridiculous that should kill my character, but if he dies I'm quitting the game", I'd be sure his character died in the attempt. There's a certain amount of craziness you can let happen during a game, but you have to draw the line somewhere.

Its important that the players be able to direct the campaign to some extent, but it needs to be done in character. I would not tolerate a player trying to derail or take over the campaign with meta gaming or entirely out of character like that. At that point the game would no longer be fun for me. The bottom line is: If you're not having fun then you shouldn't play. So you need to ask yourself if you're still enjoying the game, if not then its time to leave.

It sucks that there aren't any other groups you could get involved in. I'm actually surprised to hear that theres nothing else out there. Poke around on here a bit and ask around at the local hobby shops, you might get lucky and discover another group you didn't know existed. If that doesn't work then I'd suggest having a go at an online game, there's tons of those starting up that are advertising for new players on here. As you're already a DM its not out of the question to start one yourself I suppose.

I'm going to have to side with the Q-man on this one. Perhaps it's time to look for some other players.

Best of luck to you, Reason&Truth. Time to initiate an ad on this site.