Hot answers tagged

81

Speaking as a Rules Lawyer (I try to think of myself as a good guy, i.e. "how can the rules let you do what you want to do"?) and the occasional TD, I've found a couple simple rules work out. No checking the rules on your turn. Look it up while you're waiting. That includes the DM - if you ask the DM if you can do something, you get their best guess; we're ...


77

On Going Beyond Stereotype One of the ways the authenticity of female characters in movies are judged is called the Bechdel test. Essentially, if a movie has only one female character, or if it has more than one but they only talk to each other about men, it fails the test. This is a good lesson to keep in mind when trying to fairly portray women in a ...


70

Here's a technique I've used. When I invite people to a game I tell them that the game we're playing is a homebrew system called "Valadil's Game" which is loosely based on D&D. This does a couple things. Firstly, it scares off rules lawyers who want to play RAW. I figure those players aren't compatible with my games anyway and I'd rather just nip ...


70

Powerful drama requires powerful motivations. When everyone at the table agrees that they want a Horror game, they must craft their characters around these motivations. If they don't buy in, then you get the kind of power-fantasy where the heroes do the quite sensible thing of feeding Cthulhu a couple cases of dynamite and legging it. That isn't horror, that'...


68

As a gamemaster: Cheat. Use out-of-character knowledge. If the players surprise you with a plan, have a contingency plan for the NPC materialize even though you hadn't actually thought about it beforehand. Just make sure that you hide the "seams" caused by these cheats, and that you don't make the NPC seem smarter than they're intended to be. As a player. ...


66

What you're experiencing is a mismatch in what you all expect the actual game to be. As such, a boon will likely not make up for the confusion — at best it will be inexplicably ineffective at altering the players' choices, and at worst it will exacerbate the problem. Different games, same name You see roleplay and adventure in a believable world as the ...


64

You may be encountering My Guy Syndrome. There is a fine line between role playing in depth and falling into "My Guy Syndrome" where the cooperative fun at the table between players is influenced in a negative way. This may be what your DM is concerned about. Review what is at the link regarding the My Guy Syndrome and see if it applies to how the play ...


61

It sounds like your fellow roleplayer just wants you to be verbally clear about what exactly you're doing, mechanically, without just pointing to a thing on your character sheet. It doesn't sound like their problem is necessary that you're roleplaying at all - I'd be pretty surprised if they disliked flavourful descriptions of how people do things. It's ...


59

There's no such thing as senseless violence, according to the one who commits it. Characters who kill or torture without at least an internal justification are crazy, not evil. You don't have a reason to kill people in the party or at random, so you don't. This doesn't make you nonevil. Also remember that just because you're Evil doesn't mean you're a ...


55

There are several ways to approach a drunk and disorderly player. Standard drunk person handling techniques. Not really on topic for this site; Google it. Wheedle them, redirect them, you know, like you'd do with a kid. Go with it. "Roll the die, you get to take a shot!" Probably best if you're all drinking and just farting around. Some RPGs are called "...


52

Everyone in my gaming group has gone through this gaming evolution at some point. Finding the joy in playing a dumb character is all about getting into your character's mindspace (or lack there-of) and not taking yourself too seriously. Make sure you are willing to make mistakes. Part of not being very bright is that your character can be confused, taken ...


52

Play more. Read more. Watch more. Expand your library of tropes. Once you have dozens of different innkeepers bouncing around in your head, your next innkeeper will probably be a collage of these tropes. Another idea is to take a page from creative writing exercises. Take a bunch of adjectives - tall, fat, jolly, glum, one-eyed, nervous, red-haired, ...


51

Check This Part Thieves and gamblers, fast talkers and diplomats, bandits and bounty hunters, and explorers and investigators all might be considered rogues, as well as countless other professions that rely upon wits, prowess, or luck. Although many rogues favor cities and the innumerable opportunities of civilization[...] Class fluff is, for the most ...


47

When I've played (or joined in others playing) these quiet characters, the best way to run them is have an almost noir style internal monologue. "I looked at the wall, and frowned. I wasn't certain, but there might be something behind it. Best not to mention it though, I'd look like a chump if I was wrong." is much more interesting than. "..." ...


45

If your character is truly Intelligent, then the DM should help that character by offering INT checks and challenges that your character can solve with a DC check (or however that works in your game system). You should collaborate with your DM and have him/her feed your character solutions to puzzles or extra information that your character can share with ...


41

I've used several techniques to make my improv a bit more random; these are: Preparation: Names always get me so I always make several pages of names with personalities, brief schick or quirk, basically a whole page of one line NPCs, the names are randomly generated along with the description, I just add in the quirks onto the page. Cross the streams: ...


41

Describe in the abstract Roleplaying a socially adept character is extremely difficult if one doesn't have those skills in real life, but that doesn't mean you can't run one as NPC, or play one as a PC. RPGs ask us to use our imaginations to fill in many things, like character appearances, settings, and descriptions of action. We try our best to roleplay ...


41

I am afraid that there are no solution that fits all need. All have drawbacks and advantages. Accents, if you can do them, work great. Pick a real life language and use an outrageous accent of the same for your Blurbnish. Clearly, the more outlandish and caricature the accent, the better as long as it fits the tone of the game. If the game is real life, ...


40

I play female characters in campaigns about 25% of the time (and about 100% of the time as a GM), so this is something I've worked on/thought about over my gaming career. Depicting Your Character First, there's the general "How do I depict anything different from myself at the gaming table?" This is often a problem not just with crossgender play. I ...


40

This is a place where you should probably revert to descriptive GMing rather than reciting the character's lines. Say something like: The Elf approaches you (the dwarf) and says something in a language you don't understand. It sounds like elf talk to you, but you don't have any idea what he's saying. Your player can then react to this situation. If ...


40

Take charge, respectfully Treat your players' action declarations as statements of intent rather than a completed part of the narrative. Feel free to slow things down to insert details and intermediate steps when needed. What they are doing isn't always a problem. When a player says: "Ok, I go there." ...treat what they said as: "Ok, I intend ...


40

If that's the way they want to roleplay their character than why not let them? Why does it matter to you (or anyone else) if they don't "hate" their Favoured Enemy? The PHB says: you have significant experience studying, tracking, hunting, and even talking to a certain type of enemy (pg. 91). Nothing in there says anything about them having to hate ...


38

This is an important part of Dungeons & Dragons 3.5, and by extension, Pathfinder, history and community, and this site should include a copy of it. The fallacy, in short, is that optimizing prevents roleplaying, or that roleplaying prevents optimization. It is called the Stormwind Fallacy after Tempest Stormwind, the WotC forum poster who first wrote ...


38

I don't know about bushido, but in Rokugan, the answer of what they should do is "nothing", at least by themselves. Now, let me explain: Direct approaches are bad The brother of the Empress is way too high in the social scale for most samurai to be able to deal with him in any honorable way, at least under normal circumstances. Possible outcomes of doing ...


38

Geniuses are Hard It's easy to play a person stronger or faster than you, since we have an objective sense of how to scale up stats. A really agile character is just that- like you, just more agile. But mental stats are a lot trickier. We know what it's like to encounter a smarter/wiser/more charismatic person, but that doesn't tell you how to think or act ...


37

Alignment is a mess, particularly Law and Chaos I am almost certain that you will never find two people who define Law and Chaos exactly the same way. The books definitely don’t; there are actually different definitions of each such that the same action or person could be equally described as Lawful, Neutral, or Chaotic, because the different definitions ...


36

Welcome to roleplaying! I know it can be daunting; there are literally thousands of RPGs on the market as well as out of print ones that people still play. What is roleplaying? Many a roleplaying game has a "What is roleplaying?" section in the front, and they all have different takes on it, but the most common summary is that it's a formalized version ...


36

As intelligent NPCs, dragons will have a range of personalities and motivations; however, since your trouble is with separating them from ordinary humanoid NPCs, I would recommend playing up the stereotypes a bit to add some distinction. I will draw mostly from Draconomicon here, since the specified system is 3.5. It has some advice on roleplaying dragons, ...


35

No. You probably have opportunities in life to enrich yourself unjustly. And you probably don't. Character A is no different from you. But it sounds like you have a problem, not just a question: It sounds like the two factions of players are playing two different games. I won't even label the two games, nor characterize them. Suffice it to say that at a ...


34

We had this happen once. She always said it was her character. Eventually, in the middle of a dungeon, she tried to loot another (unconscious) player's body. The rest of us knocked her character out, left her to get eaten by the giant insects, and took the other unconscious PC to get healed. That was us responding in character. We invited her to create a ...



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