Questions tagged [system-agnostic]

For questions that are explicitly not restricted to any one particular system or rules, where the asker wants solutions to the question that are not directly tied to a game's mechanics.

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6
votes
6answers
148 views

Improving Lie Detection and Credibility Assessment Rules

Many systems have two or more skills/traits/other numeric values that can be pitted against each other in situations where side A tries to assess side B's credibility, where side B may or may not be ...
16
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3answers
2k views

How can I encourage a fellow player to develop a character a bit more?

As a player myself, I would like to encourage another player to add a little nuance to his dark and cringey character. The player in question is young and quite enthusiastic, didn't derail anything ...
13
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3answers
291 views

How can I incorporate elements of the Hindu faith into my campaign without the attempts looking goofy or causing offense?

For this question, assume I will shortly be running a campaign for some players who are new to D&D, most of whom are of Hindu faith. I'd like to introduce some elements of the Bhagavad Gita and ...
18
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12answers
8k views

How to set up a “Forced choice” for players in a game?

I have come up with a plot twist to create a "wrong person, wrong place, wrong time" situation. That part is important, and I don't want to change it. However this obviously causes a potential ...
13
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5answers
212 views

How can I know what type of fun my player is looking for?

Recently I've been reading some articles about the eight types of fun and how these are applied to tabletop roleplaying games. Even though I have been playing with the same people for quite a long ...
31
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6answers
9k views

What's the name of the role of characters who buff teammates?

In a RPG party, if Tank → Front line in case the party should be dealt damage Damage Dealer → Deals damage to enemies Healer → Heals teammates etc. … what's the name of the role for ...
30
votes
9answers
6k views

How to discourage mundane play?

I am freestyling a campaign w/out an °official° system, and I have run into a problem. With certain players, they refuse to play as adventurers, choosing instead to get a steady job, then saying ...
14
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4answers
552 views

What to do about a GM that does not allow for out-of-character discussion?

My GM tries to keep the game moving by not allowing for in-party discussion or out-of-character questions or remarks. For example, our party travels across town to an NPC's place with the intention ...
42
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6answers
5k views

Persuading players to be less attached to a pre-session 0 character concept

I am currently running a campaign that is coming to a close. This is fine, and as planned. However I would like to start another campaign after. I mentioned this to (some of) the players, who seemed ...
0
votes
1answer
139 views

Using Causal Influence Diagrams for Plots and Quests [closed]

I'm analysing the possible outcomes of certain plots in my campaign. At some point I realised that keeping the possible causes and effects in purely text form was inconvenient. Luckily, thanks to an ...
1
vote
1answer
75 views

campaigns spanning long time [closed]

In my experience, campaigns often span a relative short amount of time, and i'd like to change this. On one side, this is because downtime is often hard to play and justify and make meaningful: you'...
2
votes
0answers
223 views

Messing with cell phone during D&D sessions [closed]

There are lots of questions on this site about players using their phones (the phone being a symbol for not keeping their eyes on the game -- it could be a magazine, a tv, or the bird feeder at the ...
3
votes
0answers
217 views

Categorisation of GM Types [closed]

RPG theory seems to recognise the differences between player interests, and acknowledge a few loose categories/archetypes thereof - the tongue-in-cheek four in the Munchkin File, expanded to the more ...
23
votes
13answers
10k views

How can I deal with someone that wants to kill something that isn't supposed to be killed?

To clarify: By something that isn't supposed to be killed I mean things that are out of mortal's power range. As far as I can tell this isn't a system specific problem. I experienced the same thing ...
8
votes
2answers
889 views

As a Game Master, how should I handle a situation where a character can and does do everything?

I have made a number of characters that can do everything in a party across a wide variety of role-play systems, and seen several more as both a GM and as a player. I have also seen these characters ...
1
vote
0answers
231 views

Fixing/Improving My Model of Reciprocal Economies [closed]

I’m unsatisfied with how things like reciprocal economies are usually handled in RPGs. I've come up with a homebrew mechanic of my own, but it's also far from perfect and I’m trying to improve it. In ...
2
votes
1answer
138 views

How can I design a scenario to include one remote player in a way that accounts for the resulting issues? [closed]

Similar situation to this question: Tools/techniques for optimal tabletop gaming with one remote user I will have one remote player, but I'm not worried about technical aids. My question is rather ...
30
votes
3answers
1k views

What are the benefits of using the X Card safety tool in comparison to plain communication?

I am aware that this question may come across as ignorant or as an attempt at trolling. While I cannot prove it, I hope enough people believe that this question was asked in good faith and with the ...
10
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I gain the trust of other PCs?

I'm having a bit of a problem regarding how to roleplay a schemer character when everyone knows exactly what I am. I'm the most veteran player in my group, so, for long I have been setting example ...
0
votes
1answer
148 views

Firing a relativistic kill missile at a god in an otherwise medieval world: How to Adjudicate? [closed]

My players have come up with a (deviously clever) solution to an impossible quest to kill a particular god-like being: accelerate an unobtanium missile at it to relativistic speeds and smash it into ...
19
votes
5answers
3k views

Playing a Character as Unobtrusive and Subservient, Yet Not Passive

In one of the campaigns I'm in, I'm playing an AI/robot that belongs to another PC, and acts as an automated assistant. The other players and GM seem to like the drone's spotlight moments (in the '...
13
votes
2answers
663 views

How to raise the difficulty and have players love it?

I'm having a little discrepancy with my usual gaming group regarding a topic I don't see much, difficulty, or how challenging the games actually are. We usually play very system heavy games like ...
7
votes
0answers
100 views

Using D&D as a medium to help learn IRL language? [closed]

I am a DM of a small group of friends; we prefer D&D 5e but this question can apply to any TTRPG. My friends have some experience with English, but are not comfortable with it. Lately I've been ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

How to play a character with a disability or mental disorder without being offensive?

Two character concepts I've had recently are as follows. Someone who has been permanently deafened by their master as a symbol of their subservience. (NPC) Someone who has had a significantly ...
6
votes
0answers
220 views

GMs That Are Setting 'Average' Difficulties Too High [closed]

Definition Over the course of my TTRPG 'career', I have seen this pattern in different campaigns and with different GMs (probably 10-25% of those I played under). It looks approximately like this: A ...
9
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I handle a situation where one of my players wants another player gone? [closed]

I run a game with around 6 people. One of my players (A) wants another one of my players (B) not to play with us anymore. A has come to me in the past two different times with complaints about B, ...
44
votes
1answer
4k views

Which Article Helped Get Rid of Technobabble in RPGs?

Some time ago I saw an article on the Internet about technobabble in RPGs, specifically about why and how to get rid of it and replace it with something better. While I'm inclined to believe that I ...
50
votes
6answers
9k views

How do I deal with being envious of my own players?

I am the problem GM in question. I haven't played for a long time. My last two attempts at it were with GMs that represented "no" rather than "yes, but" approach. Often railroaded to the point of ...
5
votes
0answers
217 views

Is a Fractal Maze truly unsolvable? [closed]

I recently discovered the concept of fractal mazes from this question about running mazes without maps, and I'm incredibly interested, as I think it'll fit the unsettling tone I'm going for in my ...
0
votes
1answer
423 views

For what reasons do players prefer to have the risk of (Player) Character Death? [closed]

The Object of the Question In my almost two decades of RPGing, I've usually treated the probability of character death as a result of random chance in a matter-of-fact manner: as a thing that is, ...
11
votes
3answers
668 views

How to Roleplay an Intimidation-Oriented Character Without Being a Net Negative for the Party

Introduction and Context Over the course of almost two decades of gaming, and most of my real life, my experience is that there's a social approach which seems like one of the many workable choices '...
8
votes
12answers
1k views

How can I convince my players that this evil character is good for the duration of the campaign until the big reveal?

There is an NPC that I want to introduce soon, but I don’t want the PCs to be suspicious of her until a later big reveal that she is a major villain. The NPC My game has a woman who is a noblewoman. ...
6
votes
1answer
161 views

How can a group use bidding mechanics to maintain narrative balance and quantify the importance of various choices? [closed]

Pretext Many times, a group needs to pick one out of several contradictory or even mutually exclusive courses of events or actions. This can involve PCs deciding between multiple things to do based ...
13
votes
5answers
1k views

How can I convey and sustain a level of realism in a given horror campaign? [closed]

TL;DR: How to convey to the players, beyond explicit statements (which sometimes doesn't work), a level of realism that you as GM expect for a given horror campaign? How could this level of realism be ...
23
votes
3answers
3k views

How can I make conversations with NPCs more succinct?

IMPORTANT: don't just read the selected answer, all of the answers to this question provide good techniques to apply in different scenarios when it comes to conversations with NPCs. I chose the one ...
2
votes
0answers
133 views

Temporarily retiring character [closed]

One of the players in a game I GM is going to be leaving the country for a while. What options do I have (story-wise) for having his character leave the party in a way that still leaves the door open ...
57
votes
12answers
10k views

How can I show-not-tell my players that they are The Bad Guys?

My players have an interesting habit of changing their behavior on a dime. Between objectives, they'll be trying to fix problems at small towns they pass through and helping the locals, but once they ...
1
vote
0answers
183 views

What narrative techniques should a GM know? [closed]

This question is inspired by this answer which provides a named technique by which a GM can work around a specific situation. My question is: what are the various established techniques that a GM can ...
33
votes
5answers
5k views

How do I make my extroverted brother understand that we want to roleplay in private?

I have had a few occasions in my life where particular people (who have no RPG experience nor intention to play) were offended at the fact that several people in our roleplaying group would be ...
14
votes
4answers
4k views

How to retain a player who resents another player?

I am asking this question because I don't think it has been answered by any of the linked questions, and I am on the verge of losing the player in question. How to deal with anti-authoritarian player ...
4
votes
2answers
349 views

How do I make quests rewarding for my player?

General question: Beside money or items, what else might be the reward of a quest? If the quest itself if supposed to be the reward, how to make the quest itself rewarding? Specific premise: I am a ...
2
votes
0answers
2k views

My guy syndrome - DM edition [closed]

I've currently read this question about the so-called My Guy syndrome, and since I recently started DM-ing myself, I couldn't help but wonder - is there an equivalent of this for a DM? A short summary ...
2
votes
0answers
122 views

Is there a system agnostic treasure table? [closed]

Many of the existing treasure generators are very tied into a campaign. They would include very specific treasures like "Wand of Ghoul Touch" or "1,500 gp". Even the gold pieces amount isn't very ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

Looking for material regarding forging alliances [closed]

As a player, I'm the head of a persecuted resistance group, and I need to make friends and allies in order to secure resources. I don't know where to start though, I have many doubts I don't even ...
32
votes
5answers
3k views

How can I narrate Charm/Fear/Rage/etc effects in a liberating manner?

Or, How can I implement behavior-centric status effects without giving the players a sense of having lost their autonomy? It's something I have found to be a personal agitant as a roleplayer, and ...
-2
votes
1answer
158 views

What types of plants can be used as treasure? [closed]

I know there's amber, some rare woods for making armor and weapons, leaf armor, etc... but what other types of plants could be used as treasure?
2
votes
0answers
278 views

Can a trickster/prankster archetype be done well in Pen&Paper and if yes, how? [closed]

Ahhh, the cunning, funny trickster. We love him in movies and books - after all, his literary roots go back to the oldest myths of mankind. A lot of us probably wanted to be him at some point in our ...
16
votes
3answers
335 views

How can I arrange my game to facilitate the play of a nonverbal person?

I have a friend who wants to be introduced to RPGs. We played a campaign in a game system of my own creation that went pretty well, but I want to show them a variety of systems so that they gain more ...
7
votes
5answers
1k views

What do strategy vs tactics mean in tabletop RPG combat? [closed]

What's the difference between "strategy" and "tactics" in the context of tabletop roleplaying game combat? I have some idea of how these terms differ in English and I've read the SE tag descriptions ...
1
vote
4answers
495 views

How can I encourage my players to use unlimited freedom? [closed]

I'm trying to make rules/game so that players have as much freedom possible. My intention is to concentrate on role-playing, where stats are not that important and the new system I'm building will ...