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Rat13

New DM is throwing up too many red flags!

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1 hour ago, pcktlnt said:

Captured PCs are fun and should be used sparingly. It's a way to break the cycle of "kick elf and  chew gum" mentality. 

It works best as a session ender - most times when I have used it, it has been a way to avoid a probable TPK.

 

And I tell the PCs that. If they accept the capture, than all the characters survive - even the ones that were deep (too deep?) into negative hit points.

 

It also works better in some settings and styles than others - in Eberron, which has a pulp flavor, it works better than in Dragonlance, which has an epic fantasy flavor. (For Eberron, I might even start the arc with the PCs captured - any and all lost equipment is not gone, just not where they are at the moment. It was also used at the beginning of the Skull & Shackles adventure path - when the PCs don't have a ;ot to lose at the beginning, but at the end of the first adventure they have their own pirate ship and crew.)

 

And, of course the A series from way back in the TSR days....

 

The Auld Grump - 'you awaken on a cold stone slab, coins covering your eyes...' is another fun variant. ::P:

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I've done a variant of that myself; wherein the players are shanghai'd, wake up in the (empty) hold of a suspiciously dry ship, and then have to figure out how to get themselves freed, out and where their gear went...

I also got my Sunday group with concentrated whinnis and had them wake up nekkid (more or less), in cells with no easy ways out. The cells themselves were under permanent anti-magic effects and generally designed to be miniature Arcatraz... but they did escape, reclaim their gear, and then proceeded to kick names and take broccoli,... and then I broke the group's priest. *grin* His player was all thrilled.

I clearly have good luck with groups....

 

But it's less 'captured PCs are boring' and more finding ways to make it work with your group. Some handle it better than others.

 

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When I first started playing with my Hubby as DM, the first few campaigns we always got captured and thrown in jail at least once. I think Hubby stopped doing that because I kept making jokes about being arrested. Cause yeah, it's been a while since we've seen the inside of a jail cell :lol: 

 

Once we started out in a jail cell together. With everyone else in the town slaughtered. :blink:

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Back in my early days, every game my friends and I ran was a railroaded hack and slash. And we loved it. Of course, when you're 14 that's all fine and dandy. We were also super powered Christmas trees with all the stat boosts and shiny magic items we had.

 

For instance, I had a half-fiend half orc barbarian with a 22 strength, 18 Con, 18 Dex, and a fly speed of like 60ft at level 1. Oh, and that barbarian had the ability to split himself into two, with the only drawback being halving HP between them, so I had a built in flanking buddy and double the damage output. If one half "died" then it just got absorbed back into the other. It was super-duper OP.

 

The one time before high school was out when I tried to run a game that wasn't a hack and slash, railroaded mess, the party ran into an avatar of Odin at a Well of Knowledge. He was warning them of the price that the well would take in exchange for the answers they sought, referencing his sacrifice of his own eye. It was meant to make them hesitate before rushing to drink, because the knowledge they sought was extremely valuable and a mortal's eye(as opposed to a god's) would not be near enough to pay.

 

The result was one of the party poking his empty eye socket. And then kept trying to poke it for the next 10 minutes, as Odin kept warning him to stop. Which resulted in said character being obliterated entirely, with his only chance of resurrection being if the party performed an epic task for Odin. Two of the remaining 3 were willing to do it, but the other one wasn't. Because he, like the one who got obliterated, wasn't willing to take the game seriously. All he wanted to do was kill stuff.

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I feel like mindless killing is what video games (skyrim) are for. If you're playing dnd, you're role playing. Which includes getting arrested by competent guards when you kill citizens.

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Today is the big day of this hombrew. I contacted the DM yesterday to see that it was still on. So tonight we should be playing, now it's just a question of if it's a train wreck or not.

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Despite my strong desire for a train wreck of a game, for entertainment's sake, I hope it is better than you expect and you have fun. ::):

 

:gets popcorn anyway:

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Have fun one way or another!

 

*** Opens another bottle of wine ***

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7 hours ago, Rat13 said:

Today is the big day of this hombrew. I contacted the DM yesterday to see that it was still on. So tonight we should be playing, now it's just a question of if it's a train wreck or not.

Tonight I will be running Pathfinder for eight nine year old players in a pirate game.

 

I think I got the better bargain! ::D: (Seriously, some of these kids are scary smart. There is one that I am pretty danged sure is smarter than I was at her age, and sneakier to boot.)

 

The Auld Grump

Edited by TheAuldGrump
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I run a weekly game for SPED and behavior disordered elementary kids.

 

Being outsmarted doesn't bother me.

 

It's when they get bored...

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I'm literally about to walk in. With any luck I'll post a full report once I get back home. I promise to do my best and not miss a thing (the exception being attack rolls, I'll miss a lot of those).

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I'll will try to give an accurate accounting of tonight's game. I'm also going to try my best to keep it all in order, which may mean quite a few rewrites before this is posted. So here we go.

 

My wife made it to the game before me, I wasn't the last player or person to arrive though. My wife sat at the head of a long table and I sat to her left. We did some quick introductions and explained how we had all come together. That is when we learned something very interesting, no one actually knew the DM. Not only had they never played with him no one even knew him.

 

When he arrived we had to shuffle seating to accommodate the DM who was the last person to arrive.  Apparently when using a laptop for a game one doesn't bring their own extension cord? So instead of sitting next to my wife, she moved to the far end of the table and I had to sit by the DM.

 

Game started with a very lengthy explanation of the world. It was kinda needed but definitely not to the extent the DM went into.

 

The game has a total of eight players but we were missing one tonight due to illness. So there were seven players and a DM for a three hour session. No problems there. That is until every single person had a starting story.

 

I understand not wanting to lump us all together in a tavern. But this made it impossible for me to die in the first session, which was something I was contemplating more and more as the hours ticked by with no real progress.

 

My character had recently lost his job at a local tavern and was looking for work. I was offered a job as head server for a party of diplomats during a feast. So that's how I was introduced to the group. This took about two minutes.

 

The DM then proceeded to go around the table and go through really lengthy character introductions. I'd go through them all but I really don't want to, surfice to say it took forever.

 

My wife is playing a barbarian so I will tell you how she was introduced. She was invited to this festival because she will be the next chief of her barbarian tribe. The Empire is interested in the furs her people provide and would like them to become a part of the Empire. 

 

The DM told my wife she didn't have the proper clothes for an upscale festival. She said she was a barbarian and she wasn't going to dress up for the festival. That is when the DM railroaded her into going clothes shopping.

 

At a local fur trader she ran into an old contact. Between the two of us we can't even remember this interaction. Might have been important but who knows.

 

Once everyone was "introduced" another player actually asked about my character. I didn't care so I was fairly quiet the whole session but apparently this other player noticed that everyone else's introductions took five times as long as mine did.

 

So the DM swung back around to me. I told him I'd take the job but I never found out what it pays, doesn't really matter but it would have been nice to know.

 

He told me I still have time before the festival and asked if there was anything I wanted to do. I said that since the Empire reached far and wide that someone in the capital must be selling camels. I explained I would like to go and find such a trader and purchase a camel.

 

DM took me to a trader and asked what kind of camel I wanted. He didn't even know camels were in the book as an available mount. I told him I wanted the best camel, which cost me eighty gold because I didn't want to barter. I barely even want to be at the table so I want my interactions to be as limited as possible.

 

Then the festival came. He spent time "painting" the portrait of the festival and explained what everyone was doing. As I was serving a group of boisterous diplomats a servant of the Emperor came and took me before the ruler.

 

The emperor said he needed me to deliver a letter and receive a sealed tube from one of the diplomats I was serving. I told him I'd do it and left.

 

The DM then painted the picture a little more with the other PCs. When I arrived back at the festival I spotted the diplomat I was looking for right before a blade sprouted from his chest. That's where we left off.

 

The best part of the night for me was realizing that I was hired to serve the diplomats and that I wouldn't have to clean up the mess this man's death was making. That was someone else's job.

 

As I was playing I kept a careful eye on the other players, they were bored. Even when they were doing their introductions most of them looked bored. There wasn't much cross talk but the only time anyone looked truly interested was when a joke was made.

 

The DM didn't seem very familiar with 5e. He kept calling for rolls that didn't exist and at the end we literally had to explain how saving throws are handled in the current edition. He spent more time explaining things than he did actually letting us play the game.

 

Once the game was over I would have loved to stay and talk with the other players after the DM left. We all ended up making a beeline for the door however, so that wasn't possible.

 

My wife did end up friending two other players on Facebook and they both said they'll give it one more session. My wife probably isn't going back; I'll be going back just to see how combat is handled. I'm planing on dying as soon as I can though.

 

So it's sounding like the general consensus is, "I want my three hours back!" I certainly want my time back, it was boring and I just don't see this group sticking together. None of us know each other, we don't know the DM, and I'm guessing combat will be a fiasco. I'm going to make an educated guess that the DM will do combat in the theater of the mind but won't be able to keep a clear picture.

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Sounds fun! What barbarian chief doesn't enjoy clothes shopping? What bartender doesn't enjoy being forced to become a courier? There's nothing about that game to complain about! I'd be on the edge of my seat that whole game.

 

Then again, I've been known to fall into the trap of trying to create a homebrew world and failing to do it right by compiling a player handout and choosing to try and explain things as I go instead. It's something you learn from experience or from seeing another DM do it. And I've already admitted that I'm guilty of extensive railroading in the past...

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