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67
votes
13answers
16k views

How to deal with a player who is a bad sport?

I have a dedicated gaming group that meets every Sunday. We have been playing regularly for over a year now. It's small, just 5 of us including the current DM. We all rotate DM position per campaign ...
67
votes
12answers
91k views

How much is a Gold Piece really worth?

I have been wondering what a gold piece is worth, due to the fact there are many things that cost the same, but in reality, are probably worth radically different prices, such as a Goat and a Whip, ...
67
votes
12answers
16k views

How do I indicate to my players that an NPC is no longer useful and that they should move on?

I am a rather new DM, still learning stuff. So I have noticed that my characters tend to talk too much with the NPCs, trying to get a lot of information, and probably even trying to 'cheat', thinking ...
67
votes
12answers
20k views

I gave my players far too much wealth and they have far too much power. What do I do to get things back on track?

Very recently I made a huge miscalculation during my D&D campaign. The players in my D&D campaign were chasing after several pieces of a broken magical item. They had been spending their ...
67
votes
5answers
8k views

What is wrong with the D&D 3.5 FAQ?

I've heard from several places that the D&D 3.5 FAQ is generally a bad place to find information about the rules of the game. I don't really understand this distrust, since it's an official ...
67
votes
7answers
8k views

As a GM, is it bad form to ask for a moment to think when improvising?

As an amateur GM, I, like many other new GMs, often find myself having to improvise in the wake of unexpected player action. In the past, my approach to this has been to rush to think of something on ...
67
votes
11answers
12k views

How can I invoke actual fear in my players?

I'm a DM that focuses heavily on story, description and setting. My goal is to send players home wanting — no, longing — to actually be part of the mythos I've created. The ultimate goal for me as a ...
67
votes
7answers
6k views

How could towns restrain a magic user? [closed]

The modern concept of crime and punishment is very reliant on the ability to disarm and restrain and control an individual (think handcuffs, the dividers in police cars, and jails). How can that be ...
67
votes
7answers
10k views

Is it possible to fail an ability check on purpose?

Here are the general guidelines regarding ability checks: The GM calls for an ability check when a character or monster attempts an action (other than an attack) that has a chance of failure. When ...
66
votes
8answers
12k views

How to work with a player who cites ADHD as reason for disruptive behavior

I regularly run an Adventurers League table at a local game cafe. For the last few weeks I've been trying to incorporate a college age player into the group who hasn't worked out at other tables. He'...
66
votes
9answers
28k views

What is the point of a spell component pouch?

While I'd like to think I know the general Dungeons and Dragons / Pathfinder rules pretty well, one thing I've never quite understood is the spell component pouch, especially in relation to the Eschew ...
66
votes
18answers
17k views

How do I challenge my PCs who fight every battle like Mongol horse archers?

In my last few game sessions, my players have begun adopting a strategy which is working wonders in the campaign we are playing. In this Planescape campaign, we are on the Outlands, which has a lot of ...
66
votes
6answers
25k views

What can I do about the guys being distracted by a new girl in D&D group?

We recently got a new party member, and she is ... well, extremely distracting if you catch my drift. As the DM it is frustrating, because all the guys are trying to flirt with her, and shower her ...
66
votes
11answers
13k views

My player wants to watch the world burn

Several times I've had experiences where I was running a fairly standard campaign, and I got a player who wanted to, essentially, watch the world burn. I had a character who offered up his life force ...
66
votes
6answers
27k views

What makes grease a good spell?

I often see people list grease as good go-to 1st level spell. Why is this? The spell description lists 3 of its uses: forcing saves and slows movement of enemies, disarming enemies, and preventing ...
66
votes
11answers
19k views

How can I make “Empty” rooms interesting?

Traditional advice for making megadungeons in older versions of D&D is in addition to any rooms with Monsters, Treasure, Traps, or "Tricks", there should also be at least 50 to 60 percent "Empty" ...
66
votes
6answers
15k views

What's the deal with alignment languages?

In early D&D, there was the concept of an "alignment language." The original "little brown book" D&D says only: Law, Chaos and Neutrality also have common languages spoken by each ...
66
votes
6answers
11k 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, ...
65
votes
6answers
28k views

I think my DM is consistently faking dice rolls for saves against a specific spell; how do I call my DM out?

I've been watching one of our players repeatedly cast toll the dead (Xanathar's Guide to Everything, p. 169), across seven sessions, and a dozen different combat encounters, and the DM has never once ...
65
votes
9answers
17k views

The fastest way to remove bones from a man

I'm likely going to be playing a human necromancer in an upcoming return to our Out of the Abyss campaign. My character is morally "scrambled" at the best of times, and has no qualms about raising the ...
65
votes
6answers
10k views

If I run a game of Paranoia, will knowing the rules lead to a worse experience if/when I participate as a player in the future?

I received the boxed starter set of Paranoia for Christmas, and find myself in the classic dilemma of tabletop players everywhere: do I want to run this game, or try to find someone else to run it, so ...
65
votes
5answers
8k views

What is the background of Christian resistance to role-playing?

While in high school, a classmate introduced us to MAGUS, a fantasy RPG popular in Hungary. We played a simplified version with no dice-rolling and stuff; basically it was one person telling a story ...
65
votes
34answers
115k views

Looking for solo (one person) RPGs - do they exist?

I am looking to find out if solo RPGs exist, and which you'd recommend. I do not mean "one-on-one" 1 player + 1 GM games. I really mean "1 person." Update: After receiving two (fine, up-voted) ...
64
votes
11answers
15k views

Is it OK for me to give my players' characters punitive backstories when they don't provide their own?

As a GM I have a rule where I write a players background for the player in a way that will affect them badly if they say the are amnesiacs in order to get out of writing a backstory. I tend to require ...
64
votes
13answers
16k views

How can I impose consequences when PCs commit severe crimes?

For context, this is my first adventure as a DM. The PCs are level 2. About 40 minutes into the first session, while investigating the rumours about a ghost ship, the group meets with Aleyd Burrows, ...
64
votes
6answers
16k views

How are Fighters Linear but Wizards Quadratic?

The phrase "Linear Fighters, Quadratic Wizards" gets bandied about a lot, but I've found I don't have a good way to explain it to newer players. The tier system post has some examples of how wizards ...
64
votes
13answers
5k views

How to communicate to the players that an encounter can be solved also through diplomacy?

When you play D&D, you are not supposed to chat with the enemy during encounters. The system is made for fighting. However, in some circumstances, it would be nice to make the players conscious ...
64
votes
2answers
8k views

What is the “whiskey flask” problem with Paradox?

So, I've just read @Jadasc's eye-opening (+1) answer to @Flamma's question Where does the Transform Vampires/Werewolves into lawn furniture rote come from? (+1). At the end of his answer, Jadasc ...
64
votes
2answers
7k views

Do Bugbears' arms literally get longer when it's their turn?

The Bugbear's Long-Limbed trait (VGtM, p. 119) says: When you make a melee attack on your turn, your reach for it is 5 feet greater than normal. This means that when it is not a Bugbear's turn, ...
64
votes
4answers
12k views

How can I politely handle a GM who doesn't appear to 'get' how Dungeon World works?

My gaming group recently decided that our next game was going to be Dungeon World, GMed by my flatmate who I will refer to as Bob. Bob has played a one-shot of DW with myself as GM in the past and ...
64
votes
4answers
5k views

How to play when you have little experience and speech difficulties?

I can't talk, not a word, but I am really interested in getting into tabletop RPGs. But from my understanding of the game, this is difficult to do when you can't talk. I am learning sign language but ...
63
votes
12answers
15k views

What are the rules for PC-PC seduction attempts?

Last session we came to a very weird situation. Now, its outcome was meaningless and we argued friendly and politely, having fun and settling the matter with ease, but it's likely it will happen again ...
63
votes
11answers
11k views

Is there a way to ask in game (i.e. in a non-meta way) what a character's class is?

Is there a way to ask in game (i.e. in a non-meta way) what a character's class is? There have been a few times when my character is meeting an NPC (allied combatant) or another PC and it's bugging me ...
63
votes
6answers
9k views

Abuse: Is it fair if it's in-game?

I play a half-orc barbarian, while everyone else in our group is dwarven or elven. So in a town heavily-populated by dwarves, my character received a fair share of abuse, which is to be expected. ...
63
votes
5answers
47k views

Are melee combatants limited to standing around saying “I attack”?

Recently I heard a friend saying that melee combatants had fewer options than 4e or 3.x: Ranged combat was somewhat interesting in that you could deal with cover, aiming, and so forth. Fighters ...
63
votes
7answers
10k views

Is it a violation of my player agency if another player is allowed to wish away memories from my character?

A situation occurred in a recent game in which one PC ended up in control of a being of power from the outer planes via their true name. The being confirmed that they would attempt to "slip the ...
63
votes
14answers
65k views

Are there any penalties for wearing armor all the time?

In our campaign we have several characters who never remove their armor. They wear it while adventuring, sleeping, swimming, bathing, etc. Are there any penalties for: Wearing armor while sleeping? ...
63
votes
12answers
12k views

As a GM, how can I stop killing my games?

Probably the worst issue I have as a Game Master is that I think of a game, I write a campaign plot for it -- End, Beginning and Middle, get hyped, hype my players, and after 2 months I get bored with ...
63
votes
2answers
9k views

What is a “bag of rats”?

I have seen the term "bag of rats" being used quite frequently (RPG.se search for bag of rats, for example), mainly, but not exclusively, in D&D. It seems to be considered a problem or exploit. ...
63
votes
6answers
10k views

My players like to search everything. What do they find?

I am currently running a D&D 4e campaign. Every time my players defeat/subdue the monsters in a room, they decide to search the room. However, I never have anything interesting for them to find. I ...
63
votes
7answers
10k views

Could Vampires use touchscreen devices (iPhone, etc)?

Could vampires use a touchscreen device, or would they have to spend a blood point to generate the electricity required to operate a conductive touchscreen?
63
votes
1answer
60k views

What are “tiers”, and what tier is each class?

I tend to play Wizards, almost exclusively, though I have branched out and played Clerics, Druids, Sorcerers, and, at some point each other core class. I would like to play something different for my ...
62
votes
23answers
16k views

How do you play D&D when we don't have dice to play with?

Now I came all the way from Indonesia, and I can tell you that D&D is not a thing. Hence, it will be tough for me (and for my wallet) to find shops that sell d4, d12, d20 and so on. Let these dice ...
62
votes
10answers
14k views

Player has arachnophobia: what to use in place of spiders?

I have a player who joined an ongoing campaign; after a session which involved a fight against giant spiders and an anxiety attack, I was asked by said player's partner to remove the spiders from the ...
62
votes
13answers
14k views

Players playing weird characters breaking the immersion of my group

I have an issue with two players in my very large gaming group that I would like some advice from people who have perhaps dealt with players like these. In terms of age and experience, we're all ...
62
votes
10answers
54k views

It seems like every skill check should always be made with advantage due to the 'Working Together' rules. Is this accurate?

My group just started playing 5th last night, and we immediately ran into issues with the 'Working Together'/'Skill Assist'/'Skill Help' rules. By the rules it seems like nearly every single skill ...
62
votes
9answers
229k views

When do I use active vs passive perception?

So, I'm trying to figure out how to run the scene from the beginning of Lost Mine of Phandelver (5e starter set) where the party is ambushed by goblins and I'm really confused as to how Passive Wisdom ...
62
votes
11answers
156k views

Does Warlock combat just equal Eldritch Blast spam?

Been looking over the warlock because I thought it would be cool to make a spellcaster that can also mix it up in melee combat. After all how awesome is it to conjure up a magical weapon and start ...
62
votes
3answers
65k views

Is it necessary to purchase all the D&D 5th edition books to have access to all player character options?

So basic background: I am an experienced 3.5 player moving to 5th. I rarely use pre-made adventures and like to homebrew campaign settings based on as many published rules as possible. While it is ...
62
votes
5answers
41k views

Is the old “Linear Fighters Quadratic Wizards” problem still around in 5e Basic?

(This question is a comparison to 3.x, though things might have been different in 4e) In 3.5e there is a large power and capability gap between fighters and wizards that fighters couldn't hope to ...

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