New answers tagged

-3

Allow them to focus on traps/doors (immediate surroundings), OR be on the lookout for enemy threats. If you're looking intently at the floor, ceiling, etc. for oddities I would allow active checks for traps and secret doors. I would not submit someone could pay that close attention to absolutely everything around them AND be on alert for monsters. Actively ...


1

Loving the answers to this one almost as much as the idea of throwing a magic boat at people. Gotta love inventive players, even when they mess up your carefully laid campaign. Scott's treatment of the physics of the problem is great, but might be missing the application of magic to the issue. The description of Catapult I found reads (in part): ...


2

Ignoring that you have set incorrect expectations for your players, you should treat this boat catapult, at best, like you would any other 'improvised weapon'. Perhaps a total damage of 2d8 if it hits a stationary, large target. The way physics works is that objects' momentum is conserved, not their velocity. You can see this by spinning around in an office ...


0

There's always the option of designing encounters where the boat won't work, like an encounter in a confined area, or where it's extremely hot and the boat would catch fire. For extra fun, do an encounter after a couple where using the boat wouldn't work and, if it isn't destroyed by then by attempts to use it anyway, the new foe heard about the boat thing ...


3

You said it's a high-magic campaign, so it's reasonable to assume that the PC's enemies have magic items at their disposal as well. Scrying magic is fairly low-level; so there was an NPC that scried on the party when they pulled this trick the first time, learning the command words the party used. The next time the PCs throw their boat at someone, that ...


3

A big boat will probably collapse under its own weight alone, if not supported by the water or an elaborate drydock rig. A smaller boat may survive its own internal forces, but no boat is designed to survive being catapulted. I'd say the first use is ingenious, and reward it as much as it makes sense, but at the expense of the boat. The villain is probably ...


2

First, I'd advise figuring out what brings this player to the table and what they expect to get out of the game. To that end, try going over these two links with him in mind. Same page tool 8 ways to have fun It's possible that at this point you may find some major differences between his playstyle (as displayed so far) and the group's apparent style. ...


5

Besides all the great alternatives already presented: You might want to let the PCs keep and use the trick -- at least as long as the Enemy (who or whatever that may be) figures out the three command words needed for the operation of the boat. You know, survivors might overhear those command words. Or spells may help a resourceful opponent learn it. And so ...


1

Next time he launches a boat at somebody, the target tries to shoot it down, and damages it a bit. Next time after that, the target tries to shoot it down, and punches a good-sized hole in it. Just make it clear that this tactic may continue to pay off, but that they run the risk of losing the boat.


6

The real problem here isn't that you've got an overpowered weapon - The Catapult does what the catapult does - the problem is you made an exception (it does 5d8 extra damage), and now the players want to keep using it that way, but you don't want them to cheese every fight by firing boats. The practical, reasonable solution to this is to own up to the ...


18

My answer is a variation on the theme of "the boat takes equal damage". Your problem now is how to introduce this gracefully. This should come into play the next time he uses the boat, either as a boat or as a boatapult. If he uses it as a boat, make the existing damage obvious, such as pointing out it's sprung several leaks, and needs constant bailing ...


121

The folding boat explicitly says that it takes an action to speak the command word. If your player is using his action to cast catapult, he doesn't have an action left to properly incant the command word before the attack finishes. The catapult spell says that it targets an item weighing "1 to 5" pounds, and it propels the target "in a straight line". This ...


9

I'd say it's up to you as the DM. A couple questions I would ask myself in this situation: 1. What kind of campaign are you running? Is this more for social fun and creativity, or a strictly rules-based campaign? If you're going for fun and casual play, I'd follow the scatter rules AllenGould mentioned in his answer. Leave it fun and creative but give them ...


7

Throwing your weapon at the enemy is just disarming yourself with style. Magic items are rare, and whoever they're fighting might be all too happy to cut their losses, collapse the magic boat, and hoof it.


71

Oh, there's a few ways you can tackle this. 1. Be a rules lawyer Catapult says it does 3d8 damage. So it does 3d8 damage. RAW. It's crude but efficient. The downside is that it's not very much fun. 2. Be realistic - even if they don't want you to be. This is my preferred option, because it (a) does reward them for being creative, and then (b) punishes them ...


-1

It's up to your GM to start acting as a GM The Leader of the Group and take some action. For a player I'd just advise to 1) talk to the problematic player, 2) if it won't help, talk to your GM, 3) if it won't help, leave the game. If your GM categorically refuses to take responsibility for the game and do his job in the name of some misplaced ...


1

I am generally very reluctant as a player to take the initiative in booting another player from a game, and as a GM I would be quite irritated if a player took that initiative in my game-- I would consider it to be undermining my (mostly moral) authority as a GM to a fatal degree. So in that sense, unless the situation is so utterly toxic that it's worth ...


11

Disclaimer Your ability to constructively address things like this as a player will, perhaps unfortunately, depend on how central or peripheral you are to the group socially. And this is definitely a social problem, not just a game problem, so I'll be attempting to channel Captain Awkward for much of this answer. But I wanted to start out by admitting the ...


1

Unfortunately there is not much you can do about this as a player. It is the DM's job to remove the guy from the group if that becomes necessary; if the DM isn't willing to do that, it's probably wrong for you as a player to press for it. The best route forward might be to end the game and start a new one, perhaps with a different game system or a different ...


0

You are the analytical guy - so analytical guy, don't over think this one. A lot of people get wrapped up in the notion that RPGs are 100% theater or story and not simulation. You can easily reset that expectation. At the start of the next game, tell the group that you want to bring back 'old school role playing' into the game, which is more simulationist. ...


1

Your players found a really creative solution with a combination of skills and you loved it at first. I'd be cautious about trying to discourage it. That could likely pit the players against the DM and you seem adamant for collaborative versus combative storytelling. Let me offer an alternative. "Word of the PC exploits has reached far and wide. The heroes ...


0

If I think my PC's are being careless I look to myself as the DM first. Maybe I didn't explain it properly? I'll give you how I've handled these situations but first let me say a few things about careless players. They can be drunk, raging at the real world, bored with simple RP, bored with their character, unaware of enemy strength or all combined. All are ...


0

Terrasque...nuff said. Alternatively some type of Wurm or other colosal burrowing monster is disturbed by the multiple disruptions within its territory during hibernation season. Introduce it with spooky tremors or sudden air pressure shifts in the excavated tunnels so as not to unfairly TPK the party without warning. This monster was not disturbed by the ...


2

Honestly, I don't think badgers of any size could really accomplish this. They would really only be suited to surface digging, and would soon begin to tire and become injured. I can't imagine a druid subjecting giant badgers to dig until they bleed, and they would be ineffective once they reached any reasonable depth. Most certainly, even the strongest giant ...


0

First, no problem with a player playing as themselves. Some people just like it. Others can't even help it. It rarely hinders game play since as a DM I don't have to worry about them acting out of character. Here is my progression in dealing with a distracted player at the table. 1.) Reminder that it is their turn. 2.) Putting them at the end of the PC ...


1

These are all great answers and get to possible root of the player's problem. Here is my simple solution to handle problem "Bob." "Bob, that's awesome that you even know that! Crazy good memory. We don't get much time together though. Is one or two points of AC really worth stopping the game? Look, you guys can do this. You have the tools. Might just need ...


2

I'm going to offer a couple alternatives that I've seen work very well. First, complaining about a DM/GM is incredibly rude to all involved. Interrupting game play for this nonsense is a simple two strikes rule and she already burned one. Next rant is her last at the table. Second, How she hogs the spotlight makes the difference. Is she in character or ...


-4

I have an idea for a totally different approach based on that your setting is not quite plain Medieval but rather Fantasy Medieval, kind of LOTR styled: Remember that Aragorn showed up not quite at the beginning, but once he was there he was part of the main protagonist group? Make an Aragorn. Make the PCs find someone quite powerful, let's say the sun mage ...


1

Talk to them. Don't just make it hard for them to do what they want to do and cripple their plans. Talk to them as a fellow player and person. "Hey guys, I'm not that previous DM. I'm not out to get you and kill you all and make a throne of your puny player bones. I'm also a player in this game we call D&D. And, really, I'm getting a bit bored with ...


5

5e uses a mixture of simulation and design for monster encounter balance. It is true that a creature's AC is determined by its armor, shield, dexterity modifier, and any enchantments (or alternative ways to calculate the AC). However, the balance system gives you what AC you should have on a monster. These seem to disagree. If you equip a CR 1 town ...


4

When you get down to it, the player is arguing from lack of imagination. He said there's no way the NPC could have that AC, and in saying that he failed to take into account a completely obvious means by which AC can be improved beyond the norm (assuming of course that you didn't ignore any rule in giving this item to that NPC). This happens repeatedly, and ...


21

Ask the player why he doesn't trust you Maybe something happened while you were DMing that made him lose faith in you. Maybe something happened in another campaign that made him lose faith in all DMs. Whatever the issue, a role-playing game demands a certain amount of trust by all participants and—as you've experienced—things are uncomfortable if that ...


4

I had a friend who was pedantic... in the same way. In my case - I talked to him. During conversation, my argumentation was concentrated in these points: There are many ways to play tabletop RPG. Actually, here it's not unlike computer game where you host online computer game (for example Mount And Blade: With Fire And Sword) - first of all you choose ...


35

I suspect that there is an underlying issue here which has little or nothing to do with the rules. He's not "lawyering" in the usual sense - probing the DM to see what loopholes he can exploit. What I gather from the description is that he's second-guessing the DM with regards to how difficult the encounter is. Personally, I would do two things. First of ...


0

don't know whether that's usual for D&D but even if it's not you could perhaps still apply it because such a digging tactics isn't usual either, you could try a combination of the following: a material the moles cannot dig through, surrounding the BBEG base a huge sky styled realm where moles and other Earth-typed creatures cannot be summoned and where ...


5

It seems to me that most dungeons, especially ones inhabited by a BBEG (big bad evil guy?), tend to be inhabited by a large number of foes, and than going through a dungeon's halls quickly and quietly usually gives an attacking adventuring party an advantage, because they can usually engage most of the enemy forces piecemeal, a few at a time. Starting a ...


1

As has been said, mining is fairly easy to detect. Can you say "ambush"? Or, assuming enemies that don't have a problem operating on the surface, counterattack while the party is going down the shaft. A rock rolled in after them could be very nasty indeed. (I would say the BBEG can't quickly find a really big round one so the rock that comes down doesn't ...


2

My answer is similar to others, but should be different enough to merit a separate entry. Top soil only goes down so far. Eventually you hit rock, and almost any underground fortress is going to be set in rock. Cave systems are left when water carves passages through rock and stone formations. The material left is hard enough to hold its shape around ...


3

Why not just put your encounters in locations that aren't underground? Castles? Fortresses? Big towers? Mountains that already have extensive dug-out tunnels beneath the actual location of interest? It's clear to you, and it should be clear to the Big Bad at this point, that underground is not a safe haven - so just don't give them that option.


4

When the party wants to do something that is going to take a long time, and you don't want to have to sit there while they try it, you can just use a timeskip and jump over it. Player: "We're going to dig. So, I start by casting-" DM (interrupts): "Right! You spend the rest of the day digging. It looks like it will probably take another week to get ...


15

Talk to your group to develop a mutual understanding and set campaign expectations. You seem to understand a lot of causes for the issue at hand. Tell your group that you understand they're risk-averse but that you're not interested in killing them. Except in extreme circumstances or their total disregard of explicit risk, a TPK is a failure on your part; ...


7

Problem: Your players expect you to both try to kill them with numbers and be an unimaginative GM who does not react to their actions in any way (aka a bad GM). Solution: Have the bad guys make mistakes. If you give the players information on what is going on - overhead conversations, diagrams of observed patrol routes, enemies living in mountain chalets ...


17

What's the Real Problem? Now, technically, you're talking about digging here, but you mention that your players ignore deadlines. It's not that hard to make digging hurt; you can set up wherever they dig into to be more or less equivalent to the gatehouse they would storm if they went in the normal way, for instance. However, what you seem to really be ...


6

Play God According to some of the flavor text in the PHB for druids (pg 64), druids get their power either from a deity or nature itself. Druids strive for balance in nature. Depending on how in line with the DnD lore your players' character is, you may be able to justify a few loss of powers. What your player is doing is moving literal tons of earth ...


4

Every 10 feet of digging, perform a secret D20 roll. Add +1 to the result for every 10 feet of total depth. Only announce when something happens. 1-12 nothing happens 13-15 change in terrain (change at random to solid rock, underground lake, mud, gravel, lava, etc) 17-19 minor accident (rock fall, flood, minor collapse etc) players must make a save or take ...


17

They say there are things in the earth that should remain buried. Do you remember the fate of the Dwarves of Moria? Something could be unveiled; something wrong that changes the dynamic of the setting/party and puts them out of their comfort zone. Not as players, but as characters in the game. In my head I have some weird quest hook - the druid's ...


11

I have faced similar situations in the past - specifically that I had a group of over-the-top engineers who actually knew a lot about the various topics/subjects that came up. This typically lead to a "this is possible, and within the rules" conversations quite often. However don't be tricked into following their mindset. You are the DM, by the very nature ...


4

Remember that as the DM you can simply tell your players that they can't do something. A variety of rationales exist for why they couldn't build a tunnel into a dungeon. The ground is unsuitable for tunneling (Rock, Sand, Mud, etc.). There are wards on the dungeon that prevent tunneling in. These wards could predate the current inhabitants and thus not ...


33

Talk to the Players They are used to being the target of a DM out to kill them. You're a DM trying to let them be the hero. There is still a risk of dying, but you aren't trying to kill them like their former DM was. Tell them that they can, and are encouraged, to try new things and take risks. Specificially talk about their spell and say "It was cool, ...


70

Use scouts Digging and building mineshafts is very easy to detect for even a casual observer. The BBEG can wait until the druid has wasted a bunch of his spells, then show up and bury the intruders in the grave they just dug. If it's an ambush, the PCs won't be able to teleport away without taking a few hits, and if they have a reputation for being flighty, ...



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