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It sounds like this behaviour started when that player began using a particular character. This may be important: the player may have started using a character which doesn't mesh with the system's attitude toward failure.

Only a certain subset of RPGs expects random failure in the areas a character is supposed to be most skilled at. In most every other form of storytelling, including many RPGs, it's weird and off-putting for a hero to just flub his expertise for no apparent reason.

D&D-like systems (including games like ) are, as you've noticed, brutally sanguine about failure--especially in combat. It's virtually impossible for a PC to be absolutely great at something when the action-resolution die is so swingy; he always has a noticeable failure rate. This is an intentional part of the game's design, and seems natural enough (because it's presented as "realistic") that many players don't really notice it.

However, this inevitable failure rate runs counter to many of the narrative tropes which D&D references. The idea of a hero who can randomly fail, regardless of circumstance, even when he's doing the things he's best at, isn't a common thing in myths, books, or movies. If this is the first time your player's PC has been inspired by this sort of exceptional competence, then it's quite understandable why a previously laid-back player is suddenly getting upset that the system is making his hero fail at things which should be trivial for the guy.

So what do you do? Well, first I'd recommend talking with the player outside the game to see if this is part of the challenge he's facing. ThereFind out what inspired the character; there may be a way he can re-think the character to be more in tune with your chosen system's inevitable failures, or a way he can re-build the character to better realise his competency goals. It might even help round out the character and make him more compelling to play!

There's also something you can do as a GM: make failure awesome. Many RPGs mention this tool, but I've noticed that d20 System manuals tend not to. In brief, when the dice say a PC fails at something he really shouldn't fail at, you can blame external circumstances rather than incompetence.

It sounds like this behaviour started when that player began using a particular character. This may be important: the player may have started using a character which doesn't mesh with the system's attitude toward failure.

Only a certain subset of RPGs expects random failure in the areas a character is supposed to be most skilled at. In most every other form of storytelling, including many RPGs, it's weird and off-putting for a hero to just flub his expertise for no apparent reason.

D&D-like systems (including games like ) are, as you've noticed, brutally sanguine about failure--especially in combat. It's virtually impossible for a PC to be absolutely great at something when the action-resolution die is so swingy; he always has a noticeable failure rate. This is an intentional part of the game's design, and seems natural enough (because it's presented as "realistic") that many players don't really notice it.

However, this inevitable failure rate runs counter to many of the narrative tropes which D&D references. The idea of a hero who can randomly fail, regardless of circumstance, even when he's doing the things he's best at, isn't a common thing in myths, books, or movies. If this is the first time your player's PC has been inspired by this sort of exceptional competence, then it's quite understandable why a previously laid-back player is suddenly getting upset that the system is making his hero fail at things which should be trivial for the guy.

So what do you do? Well, first I'd recommend talking with the player outside the game to see if this is part of the challenge he's facing. There may be a way he can re-think the character to be more in tune with your chosen system's inevitable failures. It might even help round out the character and make him more compelling to play!

There's also something you can do as a GM: make failure awesome. Many RPGs mention this tool, but I've noticed that d20 System manuals tend not to. In brief, when the dice say a PC fails at something he really shouldn't fail at, you can blame external circumstances rather than incompetence.

It sounds like this behaviour started when that player began using a particular character. This may be important: the player may have started using a character which doesn't mesh with the system's attitude toward failure.

Only a certain subset of RPGs expects random failure in the areas a character is supposed to be most skilled at. In most every other form of storytelling, including many RPGs, it's weird and off-putting for a hero to just flub his expertise for no apparent reason.

D&D-like systems (including games like ) are, as you've noticed, brutally sanguine about failure--especially in combat. It's virtually impossible for a PC to be absolutely great at something when the action-resolution die is so swingy; he always has a noticeable failure rate. This is an intentional part of the game's design, and seems natural enough (because it's presented as "realistic") that many players don't really notice it.

However, this inevitable failure rate runs counter to many of the narrative tropes which D&D references. The idea of a hero who can randomly fail, regardless of circumstance, even when he's doing the things he's best at, isn't a common thing in myths, books, or movies. If this is the first time your player's PC has been inspired by this sort of exceptional competence, then it's quite understandable why a previously laid-back player is suddenly getting upset that the system is making his hero fail at things which should be trivial for the guy.

So what do you do? Well, first I'd recommend talking with the player outside the game to see if this is part of the challenge he's facing. Find out what inspired the character; there may be a way he can re-think the character to be more in tune with your chosen system's inevitable failures, or a way he can re-build the character to better realise his competency goals. It might even help round out the character and make him more compelling to play!

There's also something you can do as a GM: make failure awesome. Many RPGs mention this tool, but I've noticed that d20 System manuals tend not to. In brief, when the dice say a PC fails at something he really shouldn't fail at, you can blame external circumstances rather than incompetence.

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It sounds like this behaviour started when that player began using a particular character. This may be important: the player may have started using a character which doesn't mesh with the system's attitude toward failure.

Only a certain subset of RPGs expects random failure in the areas a character is supposed to be most skilled at. In most every other form of storytelling, including many RPGs, it's weird and off-putting for a hero to just flub his expertise for no apparent reason.

D&D-like systems (including games like ) are, as you've noticed, brutally sanguine about failure--especially in combat. It's virtually impossible for a PC to be absolutely great at something when the action-resolution die is so swingy; he always has a noticeable failure rate. This is an intentional part of the game's design, and seems natural enough (because it's presented as "realistic") that many players don't really notice it.

However, this inevitable failure rate runs counter to many of the narrative tropes which D&D references. The idea of a hero who can randomly fail, regardless of circumstance, even when he's doing the things he's best at, isn't a common thing in myths, books, or movies. If this is the first time your player's PC has been inspired by this sort of exceptional competence, then it's quite understandable why a previously laid-back player is suddenly getting upset that the system is making his hero fail at things which should be trivial for the guy.

So what do you do? Well, first I'd recommend talking with the player outside the game to see if this is part of the challenge he's facing. There may be a way he can re-think the character to be more in tune with your chosen system's inevitable failures. It might even help round out the character and make him more compelling to play!

There's also something you can do as a GM: make failure awesome. Many RPGs mention this tool, but I've noticed that d20 System manuals tend not to. In brief, when the dice say a PC fails at something he really shouldn't fail at, you can blame external circumstances rather than incompetence.