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Nobody could possibly be so foolish!


buglips*the*goblin
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Picture the scene, Call of Cthulhu, modern day, the place a sprawling almost deserted meat packing plant

 

Two of the players have just put out the unreachable fuse on a large bomb by sticking the whole thing (on a trolly) into a an AUTOMATIC (just close the door and it goes on) vacuum chamber/dehydrator that is normally used to dry the 'special' jerky the factory produces on the side. Take away the oxygen and the fuse goes out, genius, I was proud of them

 

(their opponents were a bit set in their ways and old fashioned, having been around for quite a while)

 

but what's this, they hear somebody coming, they're going to be seen what will they do...

 

Instead of running away or fighting they chose to hide in the vacuum chamber behind the bomb cart, Pulling the door closed behind them, sigh, I asked if they were sure if that's what they wanted to do, were they sure they wanted to close the door, why yes, they didn't want to risk being seen........

 

sigh, memory you are such a fickle beast,

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My table always seems to forget that when the GM double checks if the PCs want to do an action to stop and rethink the situation. Sometimes one remembers and I get happy, other times....well yeah.

 

My table has often said something like, "Yes, we know it's a bad idea. But our characters don't."

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My players did something like this with a random magical mutation effect. Only that their rolls made statistics weep quietly in the corner...

Oh, and the time they needed to dig, somehow. One of the effects in their rod of wonder* was to summon a brass dragon. Hence the algorithm:

1. Try rod.

2. Heal, mend or conceal results.
3. If no dragon, GOTO 1.

Luckily, they didn't roll a critical fail ;)

*Homemade one. With critical success and failure. I hope they roll crit.fail one day ;)

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My table always seems to forget that when the GM double checks if the PCs want to do an action to stop and rethink the situation. Sometimes one remembers and I get happy, other times....well yeah.

 

My table has often said something like, "Yes, we know it's a bad idea. But our characters don't."

 

 

Usually I follow the same concept that the actual characters may not know, but there are points that border on the WTF.

 

I had a character that usually played fool-hardy rogues. This time he wanted to be a noble and wise knight, so I helped him work it out. His squire was a bard and they were on their way to the fairly famous "Cave of No Return." The squire explained that no one who has entered this cave has returned, wasn't a legend in the slightest an actual statement. Up to this point the player forgot he wanted play a different character type and started being fool hardy again. Well, they get to the cave and all the other characters notice that nothing is right, Mage sees the entire mountain is enchanted, druid sees things in the opening that shouldn't be there (the monsters but she couldn't quite make them out, just knew something was wrong). The knight decides to walk straight in (failed his perception checks). Everyone, I mean everyone, including the GM controlled bard said don't let's examine this. He said screw it and marched in, and was dropped to dying in the surprise attack (He was saved before death set in).

 

We explained to him that a wise character would have listened to all the advice given to him and not just marched into the clearly deadly cave entrance. He still didn't get it and sulked the rest of the session and continued doing stupid things. But those are another story.

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This sort of reminds me of a campaign I was involved in several years ago now. Our DM had this habit of giving PC's curses if their character did something really stupid. In the case of the Paladin in our group, she had taken the tarp off a pile of barrels the DM would have rather she not have done. So a bit later as we are crawling through a dungeon... *WHAMO* PC encountered a goblin and kills it, but not before being cursed. The curse? Every other word was a swear word. The rest of us were rolling on the floor laughing as this pious paladin was suddenly swearing every other word. It was epic. 495.gif

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We explained to him that a wise character would have listened to all the advice given to him and not just marched into the clearly deadly cave entrance. He still didn't get it and sulked the rest of the session and continued doing stupid things. But those are another story.

 

 

Dim players can be helped; foolish players are irredeemable.

 

^_^

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I do suppose it's my comeuppance for my Tiefling, though.

 

DM: "Are you sure you want to do that?"

 

Tiefling: "Why not?"

 

DM: "There's a 95% chance it will create a catastrophic event that will kill all members of the party, and possibly unzip the fabric of reality for 100 miles in every direction."

 

Tiefling: "Yeah, but is it my reality or just... never mind, we won't get into that now. What happens if I succeed?"

 

DM: "You'll be permanently turned green, otherwise no additional benefit."

 

Tiefling: "I have a 1 in 20 chance of being GREEN?! Somebody give me some dice!"

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Anyone else ever just randomly roll dice to scare the players?

 

Probably my crowning paranoia was a group of my players completely bypassing an abandoned town because of a single skeleton. The skeletal warrior from the previous encounter made an impression about assumptions.

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Nope. My players are scared enough with what I roll out in the open.

 

The only rolls I make in secret are ability checks where the character would not know the result (move silent, etc). I handled secret door checks by rolling them in advance, 100 of them on a sheet, and just quick-reference when a check is called for. It keeps the clever ones from figuring out a more thorough search will pay off.

 

Rolling out in the open where possible not only keeps faith that the DM isn't cheating, it ramps up the tension. When that cavalier died it was because the party rolled badly and my rats and goblins rolled amazing. One goblin got three nat 20s and was so shocked by his combat results that his morale broke and he ran away. There are no goblin heroes, anybody who stands out gets killed by the chief because they're a threat. Being surprisingly heroic terrified that goblin.

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Speaking of CoC, we were running a published adventure. There was a green glowing meteorite. The big bad is growing stronger and coming for us. We all fire madly at him except the person that has the meteorite. He puts the meteorite inside the lead of one of his bullets and then fires at the big bad. Fortunatly the bullet if enough to kill him before the meteorite gives him the power to fully manifest on this plane and destroy the earth.

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I remember one time back in 3.5, our party found ourselves in an underwater cave. We'd just surfaced and discovered that the only door above us was trapped; having no Rogue in the party we spent quite a long time investigating the trap to figure out what it would do if we set it off.

After we discovered that it contained glass balls full of air-borne poison, we fashioned a large 'catching' net and opened the door with a stick, setting off the trap. We somehow (to our GM's surprise) caught all of the poison-filled glass balls and packed them away for later use.
Later on when we were a ways into the cavernous dungeon, we come across a party of enemies and the first thing the Cleric in our party does is pull out one of the glass balls and tries to make a throw attack with it. He didn't roll... well. As a result the glass ball simply dropped backwards out of his hand - smashing to the ground at the feet of the rest of the party members behind him and we were all poisoned.

 

Recently during another campaign with some different characters (same group of players) we were exploring a wizard's workshop, long ago abandoned. We had 2 spell casters in the group, and I was playing a Rogue. In the workshop we came across a small jar with a cat inside, obviously in suspended animation or something along those lines.

There was a label that was un-readable, and no-one else seemed very interested in the jar. So I opened it!
Out popped an intelligent, very much alive and well cat familiar that automatically became bonded to me as I was the one that opened the jar. (The cat gave a heavy sigh and looked at the casters and said, 'why couldn't one of you have opened the jar?!' He explained that if the label were legible, it clearly explained that he became bonded with who-ever freed him.) So the casters of the group missed out on getting a free familiar, and I now have a cute little disgruntled cat to do my bidding. I promised the poor little guy that I'd take a few spell user ranks next time I leveled up.

 

Whooo, that's me, subverting DM expectations since 2001!

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