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Argent
07-29-2007, 10:31 AM
This was inspired by reading the tail-end of the stat generation thread...

As a DM, do you fudge rolls or do you let the dice fall where they may? What I mean is, if it is useful to the story to let the players accomplish something or not accomplish something, do you just roll a die and announce the result you want, or do you let the dice dictate plot?

I'm just curious, and I'll hold my answer in reserve...

Karui_Kage
07-29-2007, 11:19 AM
Never fudge. Whether or not it's useful to the story, if a roll goes astray, there will be a way to make things work in the end.

That said, I also use a "Fate Point" system so that the PCs have a couple chances before being permanently penalized by a bad roll. Still no fudging though.

Moritz
07-29-2007, 12:51 PM
As a DM, the die falls where it does. As a player, "OH MY GOD, I ROLLED ANOTHER 20!"

Really though, there were games way back when, that I (as a player - and in my teens to 20's) that saw a little fudge. Now that I'm an adult and almost into my 40's, it's a different animal.

As Karui notes, I too have a 'fate point' situation going on every now and again. The mulligan or re-roll from time to time for my players.

Edit Note: I normally don't have the need to fudge a roll, since I often roll very well. As NikoONeil may recall me wiping out half the party with a few "OH MY GOD, I ROLLED ANOTHER 20" 's.

NikoONeil
07-29-2007, 02:10 PM
As a DM I reserve the right to fudge to roll. Hopefully, I wont have to but if it is a difference betweed a TPK and someone surviving I will fudge it.

Ed Zachary
07-29-2007, 04:09 PM
As a DM, do you fudge rolls or do you let the dice fall where they may? What I mean is, if it is useful to the story to let the players accomplish something or not accomplish something, do you just roll a die and announce the result you want, or do you let the dice dictate plot?

As DM I cheat like hell... because I'm the god of the story and can get away with it.

I don't let the dice dictate direction, plot or encounters, those are all planned in advance or spur of the moment with sadist intentions. During combat and saves I usually roll the dice and let fate happen. But sometimes I want to smack around a character who deserves it, or I want to preserve a character a bit longer to kill them later on.

Karui_Kage
07-29-2007, 07:53 PM
choo choo?

Ed Zachary
07-29-2007, 07:55 PM
choo choo?

That's highly recommended when eating.

Skunkape
07-30-2007, 07:14 AM
I'll make decisions as to where I want the story to go, then roll dice to make it appear that I'm allowing chance to have a hand in what happens. I will consider the roll when I carry out the story decision, but I prefer the position of Storyteller over just being a GM any day.

So far, Iíve still got happy players, so I must be doing something right.

Argent
07-30-2007, 08:08 AM
I admit to a combination of both when I'm GMing. As Skunkape said, I prefer to be a Storyteller than a DM, so while I will let the dice have their sway 90% of the time, I do intervene if I think we'll have more fun with the story going a certain way. It is, after all, a game. If we aren't having fun, why do it?

As a player, I never fudge die rolls. Because, a) cheating and b) much more fun to let chance have a hand in the character's situations. Especially since I usually chose the heroic (read: stupid) action over the safe one, every time. And sometimes it is just as much fun to fail at those as it is to succeed.

starfalconkd
07-30-2007, 08:57 AM
I do when necessary. As much for the pcs benefit as for my bad guys.

Moritz
07-30-2007, 09:15 AM
As DM I cheat like hell... because I'm the god of the story and can get away with it.

I consider it part of my channeling some other reality. Dice are not random, but fated and are linked into the whole psychic experience.

Nah, not really. I just wanted to try and be mamby pamby. Did it work?

Inquisitor Tremayne
07-30-2007, 09:30 AM
I have a couple of players on these boards but here it goes anyway...

I would say 75% as the dice fall vs 25% GM cheating.

Sometimes the players just need to be taken down a notch and realize they aren't ALL powerful.

On the flip side, I've disregarded natural 20s to "save" PCs on occasion. They still get hit though.

Oh, and as someone mentioned a long time ago on the Wizards boards, the major NPCs (Elminster and Darth Vader for example) don't have the stats that they have been written up with in any of the books. So if a PC does try to take them on they have whatever stats I decide to give them at that particular moment! MMMWWWHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!

InfoStorm
07-30-2007, 11:03 AM
In my old age I've been more fate'ist and have just been letting the dice roll where they will, especially when the PC's are earning a thwomping from just plain bad choices. I have, on occation, fudged my bad guy's rolls in order to allow them to escape. It's SO HARD to keep reoccuring villians alive, while not having them so much higher in level they can kill the party in 1d4 rounds.

Brian Vilarino
07-30-2007, 07:03 PM
Nope, I never fudge rolls. In fact, I have an open rolling policy. Everyone, including me roll our die right in the middle of the table where everyone can see. This way no one can fake their rolls. It also lets the players know that I'm not purposely trying to kill them. ::evil grin::

Grimwell
07-30-2007, 11:04 PM
Players should never fudge rolls. Never. Ever.

GM's have the right to fudge when they feel it's necessary.

Personally, I rarely fudge as a GM - I like the random factor that the dice bring to my otherwise iron grip of doom on the story. :) I have, on more than one occasion, told specific players to reroll when they are having a horrible night and need some stress relief - but my rolls are mostly in public, and rarely fudged.

Caveat: There is no hard and fast rule for this, or a 'right answer' as to how it should happen. It's the GM's decision and should change from game to game depending on the GM's needs.

Argent
07-31-2007, 07:59 AM
Caveat: There is no hard and fast rule for this, or a 'right answer' as to how it should happen. It's the GM's decision and should change from game to game depending on the GM's needs.

Couldn't agree more! I was just sort of curious to see what the various GM takes were on this subject. And we seem to have gotten a good spread; some yea, some nay, and a whole bunch in the sometimes column. As statisticians would say, an acceptable and not unexpected data spread.:cool:

Brian Vilarino
08-01-2007, 11:32 AM
As statisticians would say, an acceptable and not unexpected data spread.:cool:

You sound like one of my players :D

rabkala
08-03-2007, 11:07 PM
Dice only dictate plot in my games when I am in a really bad mood or overtired. I usually hate to mess up months of storytelling and adventuring with some bad luck at dice.

shilar
08-05-2007, 08:46 PM
Well since most of my time behind the screen was as a WoD storyteller I've never been afraid to fudge the dice for good plot driven reasons. Another favorite trick is to check my dice to see if they are still rolling random. Players get nervous when they hear dice and don't know why.

Argent
08-14-2007, 12:33 PM
Players get nervous when they hear dice and don't know why.

And nervous players are the bread and butter of a good gaming session!:D

Farcaster
08-14-2007, 12:35 PM
Of course... It means they are invested in and care about their characters :)

Skunkape
08-15-2007, 08:21 AM
Yes, it's always good to roll the dice behind the GM screen at odd moments. Course, I sometimes snicker and jot down some notes as well after the dice come to a stop. That really gets my players going!

Oh and don't forget to act all innocent when the players start questioning you about what's going on, that'll really get them started!

TheYeti1775
08-15-2007, 11:33 AM
In combat, no. No fudging there.

For dramatic effect, possibly. Especially if looking for something specific to happen.

Ed Zachary
08-15-2007, 11:51 AM
And nervous players are the bread and butter of a good gaming session!

Try leaving the Monster Manual open to a page with a really nasty monster on it.

Moritz
08-15-2007, 02:16 PM
Speaking of Monster Manuals. When it came to wandering monster time, I'd have a friend roll his percentile dice + d4 to come up with a page number and MM to use for the specific monster. Sometimes if it didn't fit, I'd toss it completely and make him reroll. Other times, it would work out nicely.

shilar
08-16-2007, 12:03 AM
Speaking of Monster Manuals. When it came to wandering monster time, I'd have a friend roll his percentile dice + d4 to come up with a page number and MM to use for the specific monster. Sometimes if it didn't fit, I'd toss it completely and make him reroll. Other times, it would work out nicely.
I had a dm do this except even if it didn't fit he used it. We were in the garden of elemental chaos. Every 4 rounds a monster areared selected randomly off of a D1000 chart. Yes he did come up with 1000 seperate monsters for said chart. He rolled a whale one time. It fell on us. OUCH! He also had a d1000 chart of things that happened when we touched to chaos stuff he had floating around the garden. I rolled 142 which had the notation -nothing happens- others in the party were not so lucky.

Kell Tainer
08-19-2007, 09:41 PM
I try not to fudge rolls unless I realize that I have made a major mistake (like sending the party against a monster far too powerful for them). I will fudge some rolls for storytelling purposes or in attempts to teach the players to use that grey matter they have between their ears.

Moritz
08-20-2007, 09:35 AM
Kell,

You're admitting guilt by saying "like sending the party against a monster far too powerful for them". It is totally not your fault that they choose to fight the monster. They've the right to choose to rush in and die.
Never admit guilt, it's always the player's fault, never the DM's :)

Kell Tainer
08-20-2007, 05:23 PM
Ah, no. The occasion I was thinking of was my fault. I set up the encounter such that the only way out was through one specific room. If I had gone by my rolls then the 7 headed cryohydra would have obliterated the entire party. As it was the hydra killed one player in the suprise round. It got uglier from there, but a few people managed to survive, at least for a while.

Moritz
08-20-2007, 05:26 PM
Rule Number 1 - the DM is always right.
Rule Number 2- any questions, see rule number 1.

Don't admit fault. They should have run away, regrouped, and used tactics or something. And when they start whining about how you pitted them against a more powerful foe, see rule number 1. :)

Ya know, I'm so glad I don't play with that Clay/Sam guy anymore. Life is just... amazing now that he's gone and I can tell stories about him over and over.

starfalconkd
08-20-2007, 06:33 PM
Rule number 3: if you are actually wrong, lie.

rabkala
08-20-2007, 06:52 PM
Rule # 4: If you lie and are caught, insist the rule in question was addressed in the errata.

Rule # 5: If the player knows about the errata, complain about the new supplements and demand the game go core only.

Moritz
08-21-2007, 09:43 AM
Dang, how do yall know me so well? :)

Grimwell
08-22-2007, 12:49 AM
Rule #6: If all else fails, start a classic Battletech campaign "for a few sessions" to distract them with shiny miniatures.

DrAwkward
09-26-2007, 01:03 PM
I'm glad you asked, in fact that kobold has a (P-class / feat / template ) from "Complete Races of Supplements" that lets him re-roll a natural 1 once per day. No, you don't meet the prereqs for it, sorry.

Eddie - You mean you could've taken your hands out of those handcuffs the entire time???!!!!
Roger - No, Eddie, I couldn't...I could only do it when it was funny!
-Roger Rabbit and Eddie Valiant

Malruhn
10-14-2007, 03:45 PM
In combat, I never fudge - all rolls are made in the clear in the middle of the table. A natural one gets cheers, a nat 20 gets groans.

In RPing situations, I will modify rolls by stuff that the players may not be aware of (like bigotry or religious bias and the like), or will continue with stuff that was intended and preordained (storyboard stuff).

This is not to say that occasionally I may change reality (Deus ex machina-esque). Sure, Skippy the Tank just got nat-20'd, and is now at -2, but the wandering druid casts fear at the enemy's mounts, which allows the group to get a goodberry into the downed fighter... But I don't do it frequently. I want the players to understand that I will kill them if they are stupid... and that they are mortal.

It makes them play smarter.

wizarddog
01-10-2008, 10:25 PM
What I will find is that Karma plays a big part in the game.

The Pc's went against a barbarian Annis and were rolling high while the annis rolled low.
As such, the PC's believed the Annis was not as effective as I described them and moved in closer to try to take it down with brute force. That was fine till the Annis then began rolling average and started damaging the Pc's with claws and rending. The full armored dwarf with 75% hp and a AC of 25 soon found himself at -6 in two rounds. Had the PC's taken the foe more seriously they would have changed tactics.

Personally, in the climax, as long as at least one PC is rendered to 0 or less in the combat at least once, I have "fulfilled" my challenge and am no longer concern if the PC mop up the encounter without anymore effort. I want them to have the sense that they earned their victory from strategy and not by dice rolls, magic items and hit points.

tesral
01-10-2008, 10:39 PM
Well if I'm going to make a call, I make a call. Instant Authoritative Answer(TM). If I roll a die, I take the die roll. The trick is to know when to pick one or the other.

Xaels Greyshadow
01-11-2008, 03:46 PM
I'll make decisions as to where I want the story to go, then roll dice to make it appear that I'm allowing chance to have a hand in what happens. I will consider the roll when I carry out the story decision, but I prefer the position of Storyteller over just being a GM any day.


This is where I'm at also. Sometimes the "Dice" may seem to be fated to make "Bad" decisions for otherwise good players. Story guiding by "Fudge factor" is far better to keep things going even when the die roll may want something different entirely.

Xaels

Mulsiphix
01-11-2008, 04:47 PM
While it isn't possible to fudge in BattleTech I often allow or request to start the game over if an enemy is killed to quickly. When your settling down for a nice two or three session skirmish and you get luck with a series of head shots, I see little enjoyment coming from the remainder of the session. However this is usually only done on small skirmishes. When players control more than 150 tons of mechs then its played until the bitter end, even if it is a long winded game of cat and mouse.