Questions tagged [metagaming]

For questions about topics concerning using, managing, or separating player knowledge and character knowledge.

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50
votes
11answers
6k views

How do you discourage “player knowledge” as a GM?

As a trivial random encounter is winding down, a player thinks "That was too easy... The GM wouldn't give us an encounter that doesn't give XP," and starts searching for hidden bad guys or other clues....
47
votes
12answers
8k views

Suggestions for decreasing metagaming and increasing player immersion?

This question is posed in a great way over on the Paizo boards, where I hang out since I play/run a lot of Pathfinder. Immersion is one of the key parts of the RPG experience to me, so I loved the ...
47
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13answers
11k views

How to secretly talk to one of the players while DM'ing?

To cut it short, the players (it's a 3 people party) are in some kind of a Secret Service of a rebel prince who wants the throne. One of my players is working for the current king secretly, feeding ...
112
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17answers
17k views

How to prevent metagaming induced by trying to not metagame?

We have a lot of questions on how to prevent metagaming on this tag. But usually the metagaming is something like Using player's knowledge to optimize your character's actions. Now, I've ...
33
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11answers
6k views

Can I roll for a PC in secret?

As a GM, can I roll in secret so my players don't even know I rolled? For example, a PC walks past a secret door; if I ask the player to roll perception he may suspect there is something. Can I roll ...
23
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4answers
25k views

What do you roll Insight against when the other person is telling the truth?

Frequently it comes up that characters will be talking to an NPC and one of them will say something similar to "Do I believe him?" "Roll an insight check." If they're lying, it's simple: an Insight ...
51
votes
12answers
9k views

How do you deal with metagaming based on die results?

I ran into this problem in a session I had earlier today. My characters were going through a dungeon and after a fairly lengthy fight with a person who lived there, they decided they would question ...
69
votes
17answers
32k views

How do I manage a player who is handling traps by metagaming?

I have a high-hitpoint character who barges down hallways without regard to traps because that's what His Guy would do. In reality, he's metagaming: doing this because he knows he has the HPs to soak ...
44
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6answers
3k views

GMing a setting when your players are more familiar with it than you

My players often ask me to GM games in specific settings we all like. Most of the time, they know FAR more than me about that setting. They will object to events I have happen or how I play an NPC, ...
28
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10answers
1k views

What is the best way to do search checks (or similar), when players knowing the result of their roll will colour their perception of the result?

What is the best way to do search or spot tests (or similar) when knowing the outcome of the roll will colour the players' perception of the result? I have encountered this problem in a number of ...
22
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6answers
9k views

How do I DM and play a PC at the same time without metagaming?

We have a large group of 9 people. As such, it's more manageable when we split into 2 separate teams to take objectives (like one team saves the villagers and the other fights the bandit leader). In ...
17
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2answers
4k views

Do characters know if someone else, who they can see, has failed a saving throw?

Do characters know if someone else, who they can see, has failed a saving throw? In particular, let's consider the following cases: a caster has cast a spell, that requires a saving throw, and that ...
10
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2answers
523 views

Methods for round-robin style DM'ing in AD&D?

Round-robin storytelling has been around for a while, and something I have always been interested in experimenting in AD&D with a variation of GM'ing where players take turns becoming the GM in ...
12
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1answer
629 views

Official self-references in the World of Darkness setting?

Are there official self-references in either World of Darkness setting (that is, "in-game")? Does White Wolf exist within their own universe? Are people playing Vampire: The Masquerade (or The Requiem)...
70
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15answers
14k views

How can metagaming retries on poor skill checks be prevented?

I'm sure every DM has had this happen: one PC is trying to find something cool on a dead monster's body. The player rolls poorly, and instead of accepting the paltry 2 copper pieces, the PC calls all ...
77
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14answers
9k views

Is it wrong to ask a player to justify their character's actions?

When a player has their character do something completely outside of the perceived norm for that character, is it okay to ask them for a justification? If they can not give satisfactory justification,...
69
votes
6answers
13k views

How should the DM manage the discrepancy between the player's memory and their PC's memory?

It may happen that, during a session, players don't remember the name of a NPC that they met (or, more generally, information about something that happened) during the previous session. Obviously, ...
26
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6answers
4k views

What do I do with a dissonant player?

We have a gaming group that has been playing the game for about 4 years. One of the players is my old friend, with whom I started gaming about 15 years ago. There is also another player, who has also ...
39
votes
14answers
7k views

How can I give a Ranger advantage on a check due to Favored Enemy without spoiling the story for the player?

The Scenario I am the DM for a group who have just entered a town that was attacked by cloud giants a few days before their arrival. The players and characters don't know this though, so part of the ...
20
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3answers
2k views

Are casters aware of spell slots?

Players use spell slots as a meta concept to manage a character. For instance, Liz the Wizard gets so many spell slots at this level, and so many spell slots at that level. It says so right there in ...
30
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4answers
7k views

How to discuss information only my character knows with the DM during the game?

I'm currently playing in a campaign and I have a character that has a major secret only me and the DM know: that my character is a member of an organization that in the story only my character would ...
41
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5answers
6k views

Is the “+1” in “Long Sword +1” for OOC use only?

Do your characters say, "I'd like to buy that Long Sword +1," or is that "+1" for OOC reference only?
33
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7answers
8k views

Do PCs understand the leveling system and its experience requirements?

Do PCs understand the nature of the leveling system and its experience requirements? For example, suppose a PC is just below the XP requirement for a level and is planning to undertake a major quest. ...
13
votes
3answers
2k views

How to prevent metagame in betrayal/PvP scenarios?

Context/Research Often the metagaming problem is about how the DM presents the things to the players. We have lots of questions and good answers in the metagaming tag. Most of them are about ...
11
votes
2answers
803 views

Does a PC know it rolled low when using stealth?

This happens on a PBP session recently. I have a goblin on a watch on a tower, but the party doesn't know this. This is an enemy base, so they rolled Dexterity (stealth) to get in. One of the ...
47
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17answers
9k views

Metagaming when there isn't actually anything there?

So, it's a fairly common question of how to keep players from metagaming. Typically, these questions are of the sort that a player knows monster x is weak to y despite their character not having ...
30
votes
17answers
3k views

Introducing an unorthodox setting the players know NOTHING about

Just a while back, there has been a question concerning GMing a setting the players know better than the GM. Now, let me ask you sort of an inverse of that question. I.e. how to introduce and ...
48
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16answers
15k views

How should I go about stopping metagaming based on Roll20 showing unexplored areas?

In the campaign that I'm running, the party is currently in a dungeon. They cleared most of the entire dungeon except a hidden door to an area that holds some loot but nothing integral to the game. ...
28
votes
8answers
18k views

Is it metagaming if I want to build a bomb?

In a hypothetical situation, I want to destroy a castle's walls. To do so I came up with the idea to build a bomb a la Saruman in LOTR. Perhaps my character would have to dig around for records on ...
11
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2answers
1k views

Making relaying information less awkward

I recently started DMing for a group of friends that are new to pathfinder. Combat and group conversations went well, but after having the characters roll perception for what they see or after ...
22
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3answers
9k views

Can you decide not to sneak into a room after seeing your roll?

If someone asks to stealthily open a door but rolls poorly, can they just choose not to do it, and let someone else open the door?
24
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6answers
5k views

How can I talk to an experienced player about metagaming?

This is my first campaign as a GM and it is going really well but I have been having trouble with a player. This player is a GM of another campaign that I am playing in and in that campaign he has a ...
24
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6answers
16k views

How creative should the DM let an artificer be in terms of what they can build?

Just how creative should the DM let the Artificer be? One of my players is a guy who thinks way too hard on how to solve problems he's not meant to 'Solve' as a player. For example, I have a little ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

Is using an ability which affects the next person to hit, knowing a particular PC goes after you, considered meta-gaming? [closed]

Recently I read a question* which asked when to use Spell B, because the asker felt Spell A was a better alternative. One of the answers stated that it would beneficial to use Spell B if: Your next ...
13
votes
1answer
626 views

What's the game in which the PCs themselves have character sheets?

Inspired by this question, I was reminded of a role-playing game solicited in a late 90s or early 00s Previews (Diamond Distribution's monthly comic book and associated merchandise--including games--...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

How can I prepare the map for a combat without alerting the players that combat is about to begin?

I am running an adventure in Pathfinder and I use a very large square board and some homemade model walls to define areas such as dungeons or houses and other stuff. However, building maps on the ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

How to prevent players from metagaming when they split the party?

Let's say that I have a group of 4 players. During the game they decide to split for some reason (e.g. one group goes shopping, the other goes to the tavern). Now let's say that the group in the ...
32
votes
8answers
3k views

Do characters know they did a poor job if the result of a dice roll isn't automatically obvious?

During a discussion I had with @jgn based on the question discussing rolling twice on an investigation check, I realized we were operating with entirely different ideas of how dice rolls actually ...
22
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6answers
6k views

What to do with a player I have issues with due to metagaming?

I want to start this by saying that I am very new to D&D as a whole. This is my first campaign and I am playing a Lizardfolk paladin (it works in this story); the problem player is playing a gnome ...
20
votes
3answers
4k views

How to distinguish Darkness from being blinded and Silence from being deafened?

If the enemy mage casts a spell and I describe to everybody that it becomes pitch black all around them, they know that a Darkness spell is going on. If on the other hand I ask for a CON save and (...
17
votes
4answers
3k views

When do I tell my players when they're under an NPC's class effects that cause disadvantage on attacks?

There's a pretty good chance that my PCs will enter a team-battle tournament soon. One of the characters that they might fight has an ability that would give disadvantage to attack someone other than ...
17
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2answers
3k views

Metagaming and Collusion while Gaming in Roll20

Metagaming has always been a facet of tabletop RPGs, for good or for ill. The impact that metagaming has on game itself can run from highly beneficial, such as when a group acts on player information ...
17
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6answers
2k views

How can I avoid metagaming when I know things my character doesn't?

One common problem I run into, as a player, is having to feign not-knowing things my character doesn't but I do, be it rules about certain creatures ("Hmm that rock golem sure looks weak against [...]"...
2
votes
0answers
880 views

As a Neutral-Good character, how greedy can I be? [closed]

I'm trying to play a neutral good wizard, but recently I came across a large sum of gold while adventuring with the party. Now, some members of the party screwed me out of gold in the past, but in ...