I started a new campaign with a brand-new set of players. After the first evening, one of the PCs reacted poorly to a decision made by another PC and 'went home'. This reaction was totally in character and was not meant by the player to be antagonistic. But, now the party has a problem: it needs to regroup.
It hit me that this would be a perfect roleplay Skill Challenge opportunity, except with a PC instead of an NPC as the target (convince the PC instead of "convincing the Duke"). The players agreed to try it.
There are a few problems with this idea:
- I need to figure out a scenario if the PCs fail without it seeming like a 'railroad'
- The target PC needs to constrain their responses to the roll of the other PCs, thereby limiting their personal roleplaying style or desires (if the other PC rolls successfully, the target PC needs to agree, even if the details aren't 'perfect'). GMs can adapt NPCs on the fly without issues. A player won't want to alter their character as a result of another's actions (or a dice roll).
Is there another approach that I should take? Are there solutions to the problems I describe above?
The player did not over-react, nor did she do anything that I think is wrong. The situation occurred after the evening's adventure, so nothing was ruined by the action. What happened was that the decision was made and executed without thinking about how it would affect the next day. The only problem is that it created an issue for the next game day: How would the PC rejoin the group for the next adventure? I wanted a chance to introduce Skill Challenges to the players and thought that this would be a way to allow the players actions as well ("always saying 'yes'"). Only afterwards did I realize the potential pitfalls to my own decision...