New answers tagged

7

Styles of Play This has been mentioned by others, but I think it is worth a much more elaborate discussion because I think it is the root cause of your problem. There are many styles of RPGs, especially when you are taking about a system as diverse and venerable as D&D. Some people play it as essentially a tactical challenge with just enough of a ...


1

I would use a tool for playing online. I'm sure there are some available, but I wrote my own. It was a basic chat client that allowed private messages to the DM / group, and dice rolls - including players/DM rolling hidden dice that only the DM can see. Players like to roll their dice even if they can't see the result. So we used the app and everyone can ...


92

You I'll deal with your issues first: you are an angry 14 year old. Don't sweat it; everybody was, is or will be. Maturity can in fact be summed up as learning not to punch the face of someone who richly deserves it. You have to remember that you have no control over the way other people behave; you only have control over the way you behave. And ... you ...


14

Was this player's behaviour justified? No, it really wasn't. They are entitled to prefer a play style that emphasises faster, combat heavy roleplaying and limited verbose descriptions – it is a valid way of playing. However, the way they went about expressing their views to you and the table was extremely disrespectful, especially to you. The preferred ...


26

As the DM, you can ask a player to leave your table if they're causing problems. Be willing to do that. :) (If, for whatever reason, you can't ask a player to leave, you probably don't want to run games for that group.) You say this was a public game. Are you sure you will have the same players as last time? (If the players you had last time had a bad ...


3

Honestly, I don't think you have anything to be sorry for. The PC obviously had decided to not enjoy the game and be openly hostile way before your session started. I would not want to play with someone like that and would remove them from the group. If the whole group feels that way, look for a group that wants to play your style of game. Now, I will ...


17

Escalation, especially public escalation is almost always the wrong answer-- like every group activity, playing in or running a game is an exercise in social capital. Ideally, everyone has fun, everyone gains social capital and maybe friendships are formed. Pessimally, things like this happen, everyone loses capital, no one has fun, everyone goes home and ...


42

Well firstly, you need to behave in a mature manner, which is sometimes tough, even for us middle aged guys. The best way to show your maturity is when you go in, apologize to each person as they walk in, including the guy who acted like an arse. Take it on the chin and share how disappointed you are in yourself for reacting the way you did, but conclude it ...


5

Since modules don't scale at all, your best bet would be to run the mod with a large table, with as many of the characters as you can manage at the top end of the level range. Most modules have a 3-level range for PFS, so try encouraging players to be at the top of that range. Also, try and encourage players to play a group of characters that work together - ...


-3

When my wife and I play I use my own character as an NPC. This seems to work well for us and I sometimes allow her 2 characters to control.


8

The least tactical conflict possible is one that presents a single goal and affords essentially only one route to reach that goal. For instance, imagine that the big bad the townsfolk have hired the party to destroy is an everyday inanimate wooden crate. To keep things simple, it's the target of an ongoing magical ritual that has given it immunity to all ...


3

Good question which I have asked myself quite a few times - I'll try to answer it. Dungeon World is inherently about telling a story. Probably moreso than other tabletop RPGs like D&D. The minimal amount of bookkeeping at statreading allows players to focus on the fiction. Now it may seem to many that more stats, rules and detailed bookkeeping about ...


2

The parallel I've drawn to the stress track for d20 games is it's fairly similar to spell slots for a Wizard- or Cleric-type character: For example, a wizard has a certain number of zeroth-, first-, and second-level spell slots. They may use a second-level slot to memorize a first-level spell, but cannot use a first-level slot and a second-level slot to ...


0

The invisible safety net I think the ideal thing would be if you could help in such a way they will feel they succeeded because they were clever, not because they got a free pass. For example, have one hall in the temple being partially under construction/repair with some heavy block of stone being held up by a chain. By using teamwork, one PC cutting the ...


1

There are three ways to deal with this. No xp: Since the threat was not neutralized in any way, you can choose to hold back on giving xp. This option is recommended if you intent for the players to go back to this confrontation. Partial xp: The players did something smart. They played their classes, took time to scout ahead and took appropriate actions to ...


-2

"Is there RAW justification that I should award XP as if they actually fought and killed the bandits?" I did not find RAW justification for awarding the XP and the 5e DMG on page 260 seems pretty clear not to award it. However, you are the DM, your table, your game, your rules. Also, take a look at the sections titled "MILESTONES" & "LEVEL ...


-1

I don't have a 5th edition DMG on hand, but I recall that in third edition, the DMG says that, on average, an encounter should consume 20% of the parties resources. Did that happen? If so, then it qualifies as a full encounter regardless of how much combat occurred. If not, then you might consider giving them a proportion of XP based on this (e.g. if it used ...


7

Quentin has adequately covered the rules-as-written point already* but since the rules simply say you 'may', that doesn't really answer the question since it simply leaves it to personal discretion. The more interesting question is asked in your title 'should I award XP?'. XP has two functions in D&D: (1) it's a pacing mechanism - PCs get bigger and ...


5

It depends on the goal and the alignment of the party. If they are really good and they know the thugs also bother the general public, they must be removed. So bypassing the encounter does not give them any XP. Unless of course time is an issue for their assignment. If bypassing the encounter saves time and this is helpful for their goal, award them full XP. ...


15

If the party bypassed the encounter simply by picking right instead of left, I'd say no XP. If they worked out a tactic to avoid the combat, I'd give them full XP to reward creative thinking.


58

The rules as written for this, as taken from the DM DnD Basic Rules version 0.1 say: Typically, XP is awarded for defeating the monster, although the DM may also award XP for neutralizing the threat posed by the monster in some other manner. It doesn't specify how much of the XP you should award, so it is reasonable to interpret it as meaning you may ...


7

It depends on what options the mob has. Per DMGII p.60. mobs have attack options including one or both of Expert Grappler (they can grapple multiple people, with no -20 penalty beyond the first) and Trample. Looking at that mob's stat block in Fortress, I see both Expert Grappler and Trample listed under Attack Options. Therefore they can grapple however ...


1

Lots of XP rewards by role-playing. They know the thief got the money for himself. They should not react. If they do, you can ask "why are you distrusting him?" Don't let them to react if they don't have a good answer. Give role-playing XP to the players who did not react. Big amounts. I used to give them more of these XP than combat XP. (This includes ...


10

It's one step, not one. It doesn't make sense otherwise. Say you want to design a Turtle (for someone's familiar) with low HP and high AC. HP doesn't get lower than 1 (1d4-1) and you decide to give it AC 15 to represent its hard shell. Taking it through the calculation process, the HP says it's Defensive CR 0, but because the AC is 15, you should add 1, ...


-2

Contrary to other answers, I would not advice to talk out of universe unless other ways prove useless. By "other ways" I mean: Companions Once I gave a kobold companion to the party. He surrendered fast and offered himself to help. I used him to give them "tips" to pass a dungeon full of traps and puzzles. Example: "Maybe you could make a deal with those ...


-2

Make it a skill check. A middling-difficulty skill check that lets you tell them almost point-blank that they're making a mistake. For example, if they succeed then one character notices that the content of the infernal's last insult implies that he knows something important. Because there was a skill check involved, your players may be more inclined to ...


13

While the other answers are all good options, they're also all oriented from the OOC perspective. Another approach to this problem is to provide entirely in-game consequences, based on our unique ability to learn far more quickly from our failures than we do from our successes. Punish the party, in game, for solving with their fists, the problem that you ...


15

I fully agree with GMJoe's answer and I encourage you to talk with your players. It's always good to have some feedback, this way you and your players will know how to make game more enjoyable for everyone at the table. But considering they ignored your comment about retreat, you may use this whole situation as more harsh learning example. If in the end ...


8

I find it hard not to reply to questions beginning with things like "how can I tell someone..." with the obvious answer "With your mouth. Use your words." But in this case I think it would be an injustice, since you already did that. I reckon you made absolutely the right decision to explicitly point out they could back out of the fight and regroup. They ...


58

You could say to your players, "Y'know, in this campaign, not all problems can be solved by punching them. And some problems that could be solved by punching could be better solved by not punching, or by punching with strategy instead of with no real plan. What I mean to say is, punching things in the head is a good solution to a lot of problems, but it's ...


9

It's a game table emulation, not a game table As the DM, you need to both recognize and accept that it's a different game/gaming experience when played in the Roll20 (or similar) venue. The DM and the players lose the synergy and intimacy of the table top experience and the in person experience. (From a personal experiential level, this is what I miss ...


36

Talk with your players Your players are here, presumably, to play a game. They aren't out to get you. Remember that it takes two players to make a conspiracy. Politely ask them not to send whispers containing relevant in-game information. They probably aren't doing this to be malicious or trying to trick you - they maybe just don't see why it's such a big ...


0

I think, there are at least four different ways to deal with split up groups: Switch at a determined (real) time using a timer (as mentioned in the post by @MattyMcGrizzle); you could vary here with different time spans, but 10 minutes sounds reasonable to me. I like the idea but it never occurred to me before, so I will try this. A possible problem may be ...


8

I had a few of my characters split up in a large dungeon without a good means of communication either and faced the same problem. After a session of bad time management, I set a timer. I set it for 10 minutes each and stopped after the current person finished their combat turn or allowed the current subject of a conversation when time was up before moving ...


2

The simplest and most obvious answer is to read the rule book. it happened to me once that I forgot to put clay in my initial inventory as a druid. I could then not cast "Stone Shape" and we decided to add it to my inventory in retrospect because it's quite a reasonable thing to have as a druid/not expensive and I just forgot to have it For example, if ...


9

Going with the very same idea of @Angelo, I'd suggest to let players try anything. If rules, though, don't let that happen you have several ways to react: Still let it happen If you are with a group of players who are not familiar with the rules, and you have not much interest in them knowing them, you can try to twist the rules some times, so they don't ...


5

I would suggest the DM should role-play the "You can't do that" situations as opposed to just saying "You can't do that". You'll find that even the most ridiculous player requests when role-played allow the story to continue and may even teach the player(s) some valuable lessons. Yes, this will be harder for a new DM to handle fluently. However, the more ...


1

The question of narrative control has been answered very well: "It depends on the game and the table preferences, but the default assumption is that the GM controls these things." The question of how to say no without actually saying no has not seen a good answer, yet. (Several good ways to say yes without actually saying yes have also been presented.) ...


13

Here's a funny way to handle it: if your player can narrate surprising things onto his background, clearly you can too. PLAYER: "I ask Linene when the boss is going to deliver that diamond." DM (as Linene): "Next Tuesday at dusk. Look for a rowboat off Cutthroat Pier, tell them the black raven flies at midnight." DM (as Linene): "They'll want ...


6

A way to say 'yes', while still exerting influence: roleplay a flashback. (This is similar in approach to this answer to a question about engendering more roleplay.) DM: okay, you know Linene? Let's explore this a bit. Four minutes real-time, you set the scene. Player: uhh... okay? I was coming through here a few months ago with some illicit ...


17

The player claimed to know someone. As the DM, you can decide whether that is actually true. Consider you were out and someone you don't remember comes up to you and claims to know you. Depending on your personality you may ask, "I'm sorry, how do you know me?" Or you may play along to some extent. How is his character going to remind the bar owner, for ...


3

There are a few ways you could handle it. The NPC might have reacted like "What the hell are you talking about?" She could have played along with him, even though she didn't know him, for her own personal reasons. Maybe she had a particularly "hot" diamond that she was looking to offload and saw her chance to take advantage of the situation. She could ...


33

The term for this is "narrative control." There are several approaches to narrative control in games. Back "in the day", most games (including all varieties of D&D up till now) reserve all narrative control to the GM, with players only having say over their own character's thoughts and actions. This sounds like what you're used to, and it's the usual ...


54

It's up to you There are two play styles (with regard to this question at least), with their own drawbacks and advantages. The first is to keep the realms of the world (DM) and the player characters strictly separate. I use the term "Golden Box" to describe this. In Golden Box gameplay, the players cannot define anything about the world, including who an ...


0

You might be able to download maps from either the publisher or the cartographer or from a site like DriveThruRPG. These downloads are better than those in your books because they usually include unlabelled player maps (often both gridded and ungridded) as well as DM maps. Additionally, they are electronic, so you can print them yourself at whatever size ...


0

I have done the following: 1) Scanned a map, printed out pieces to mini scale, glued them together, and put under plexiglass. I then put sand over the plexiglass which I cleared as areas were revealed. 2) Copied a map by hand to mini scale onto butcher paper. I put my DM screen or smaller sheets of paper over portions that hadn't yet been explored in ...


1

I usually cut from the map (of the module) each area and edit it in the computer (to eliminate hints) and print. During game, as they advance from one area to the next, I describe and if a combat arises then I put the edited minimap of the room to run the encounter.


7

Whatever works in your game is what you should do. If you haven't tried any of these yet to determine what works though… Your first two options I've never seen work. They fail exactly in the ways you predict: the piecemeal benefits are way better than the normal function and it fundamentally changes the role of potions in the game. They don't work, for a ...



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