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30

A note: While this is a system-agnostic question, certain systems (ex: DitV, FATE, Paranoia) are much better at handling this than others (ex: Any D&D system). Some games are even focused entirely around CvC conflict (En Garde, Everyone Is John, etc). For the purposes of this response I'm going to assume that in this game the party is all on the same ...


22

In short: Yes. But, there has to be clear communication between the player wanting to betray the other party members and the DM. If the player springs it on both the party and the DM then the answer changes abruptly to a resounding "No." In addition to that, and probably the most important aspect to my answer of yes is this: It must make sense in relation ...


20

I have personally experienced this as a player being betrayed, and as a GM running a game where the PCs turned on each other in my game. Both games were Vampire the Masquerade games and both were very positive gaming experiences for everyone involved, and really were great examples of why I play RPGs. Below are the details of both games, presented as sort of ...


17

I have tried this in two ways in the past. I think of the two, only one will be of use for your objective. PC Villain in the Group Create the villain with its player and discuss what their villainous goal actually is. Ensure the player can and will commit to being a villain. Their goal should require the villain to need to be close to or involved with the ...


14

Inciting intrique (without forcing firefights) Ensure that both factions' real goals require resources or skills that exist in the other half of the party. If the goals can be accomplished alone, the party splits into two separate parties that merely happen to be travelling together. Example: If faction A contains the party mage, make sure faction B has ...


13

You might want to read the Houses of the Blooded rpg. It is designed to be a game of political backstabbing and power play. It is well written, coupled with a fantasy setting (and quite interesting one) and is grim and romantic by design. You will need to prepare an awful lot of custom setting material. But game includes actual rules for: Vassal-lord ...


13

Get buy in from the group about intra-party intrigue. If the players aren't interested in this, it's going to flop. Play with open secrets: Players know each others' secrets but their characters don't. Consider a system other than D&D. D&D's main resolution mechanic is combat, which I presume you're trying to avoid between PCs.


11

The short answer: You have to choose between intrigue and unit cohesion. Intrigue involves some degree of "screwing over" the other faction and if you are the "screw-ee" you don't feel very cohesive towards the "screw-er" The longer (and more complex answer): If the main plot involves the same goal, but two very separate reasons to achieve that goal, you ...


10

I have played "PCs as villains" in various ways. The more you want a long, traditional campaign play with all the PCs "in the group," the more constrained you will be in options - a one shot or a planned several session adventure, you can accomplish this all sorts of wild ways. Covert Bad Guy In The Group In a long Night Below campaign (AD&D 2e), I had ...


10

I find it interesting that all the answers here refer to betrayal that is secret to the players as well as the characters. While there's certainly advantages to that, I think so long as your group is mature enough not to meta the situation there's plenty of advantage to doing things out in the open as far as the players are concerned. I'm currently in a ...


10

My experiences are very similar to Rain's answer. I'm part of a very tight group, we've been roleplaying continuously for over 16 years now and we know each other very well. We've had two very memorable party betrayals. Both were "series finales", so the campaign did not continue afterward. One was completely spontaneous, the other meticulously planned. I ...


9

Thinking about the models of 4e, I would assert something a little odd. By choosing to become an NPC, you quite literally become a "monster" for purposes of combat. Arrange with your GM an opportunity for you to become, thematically, an elite or solo (depending on what level of assistance you want) and to translate your character into a monster. The reason ...


7

The key to this is going to be what the intrigue entails and the scale of the goals that conflict; the larger the reward/loss the more likely that inter-party problems are going to occur. For example if the story involves going to find grand wizard Bob; and group A in the party want Bob dead, group B in the party want to release Bob from his prison and let ...


7

Level 14 Solo Creature is worth 5,000 XP Which is effectively what you are. However, I can hear arguments for saying that you are just elite, so that would only be 2,000 XP While Solo Creatures have more HP than a normal PC, and a PC has more abilities than an Elite, the most fair option is to go down the middle, and a level 14 char would be worth 3,500 XP ...


6

I don't think there are any rules that prevent them from fighting each other. It's probably safer if they agree to terms like "fight until first bloodied" or "fight until zero hp" rather than "fight to the death". As for the actual fight, I imagine it would rather boring and unsatisfying, since the game revolves around synergistic powers across party roles ...


6

If the combat is played for story reasons only and the character aren't actually willing to see which build wins over which, you could treat the face-off as a skill encounter. This way, most characters would be able to participate without the need to find a seemingly impossible balance between roles and ranges.


5

I have no advice to getting romance conflicts inside the PC group. It's something sad for me, but I have never seen in my many years of experience two PCs falling in love (or any other kind of romance relationship), PCs to NPCs yes, but none between PCs. The only exceptions happened between people who were already a couple. But my games are full of CvC ...


5

As I stated in my comment to the original question, I am about to betray my party. I will share the preparation that's been done and the plan for the actual betrayal now, and once the actual session has come and gone I will edit to share my group's experiences. First off, let me say that by the criteria defined in the question, this betrayal will definitely ...


5

If you will have other monsters in the encounter with you then talk to your DM. Have him set the XP budget for the encounter and then price yourself accordingly based on the other creatures in the encounter. PCs are probably worth a variable amount depending on how much stuff they have, the quality of feats they have taken and the optimization of their ...


4

I like running games with intra-party intrigue. I agree with @Pulsehead's comment that you have to trade those two things off to some degree. Here's some techniques I've used to run a game with intra-party conflict. Abandon unit cohesion Games like Fiasco specifically allow for creation of a story without the traditional "party" conceit. There's no such ...


4

I had an idea, but not sure if it's a good one. Let the votes decide. A level 14 party should be able to defeat, but spend all of it's resources on, a level 18 solo. If we use that to assume that the party is "worth" the same EXP as a level 18 solo (10,000), one PC would be worth 1/5th of the total EXP, or 2000.


4

This can be resolved by a couple of skill checks. First you need to roll a Stealth check to approach the player. The player gets an opposed Perception check with +10 DC because they're asleep. If they beat you they will wake up and see you approaching. To place the belt on the player you would make a Sleight of Hand check to reverse pickpocket an item. You ...


3

I had some experience with this, both from a very old AD&D game where inter-party rivalries culminated in assassination attempts from one PC and from a slightly more recent CoC game where one of the PCs was "possessed". So he was still being played by the regular player (and in the end cured) but for part of the campaign he was pursuing an agenda which ...


3

Reward Individual Goals at odds with each other There's a lot of games that do this well, and they do it by having characters with cross goals that get XP/hero points, etc. Now, the trick is that if you want the characters to mostly cooperate with a little bit of friction, you make sure they have enough goals in common with smaller stakes ones at cross ...


3

While there is nothing in the rules against PVP in D&D 4e, but it is very inadvisable. There is absolutely no balancing between the roles and classes in 4e for PVP and one player will probably end up extremely frustrated by the whole occurrence. 4e's design and balance are completely structured around players vs. monster.


3

There is in fact at least one way to 'force' a PC/NPC to accept and use an item. It is the spell Beguiling Gift. It is a level 1 bard/witch spell from the Advanced Player's Guide. Now whether or not it is a good idea to try on another party member is another issue.


2

Based on Brian's excellent suggestion, and thinking about other cases, besides your specific case, of when PC XP might come up, I would suggest that the XP value of killing a PC is 0. If you want to skill challenge the betrayal, the XP would be rewarded for the Skill Challenge. If the party is ment to be in an encounter with the PC, then I would do what ...


2

We ran a Dragonlance 2nd Generation campaign about 2 years before the books of the genre were anounced. The lead hero was the son of Tanis and Kitara raised by lord Soth in hopes he could redeem his honor. This went along well but my friend role played the character too well. He tore the party apart because half wanted to follow him to power and glory ...


2

Slipping notes A short partial answer on a technique... In some cases where there was legitimate cause for real intra-party differences we allowed players to secretly communicate with the GM. For this a player would write something on a slip of paper and hand this to the GM. This really only serves to allow players to 'secretly' communicate with the GM, ...


2

Let them duel. Let the coin flip for who picks the arena. First one to drop to zero HP loses. It isn't balanced, but so what. Make sure they know that it isn't balanced and the story is more important than the fairness.



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