The GM did not prepare properly. But that is likely because he didn't expect anyone to play an earth elemental.
BTW, I'd love to see the backstory of an earth elemental cruising around with a tiefling and a couple of catfolk...
Anyway, his retcons were likely due to his desire to have a challenging encounter because he believed that would be more fun than the party just squishing his bad guy like a bug.
In the future if you are going to choose to play a race that might have the potential to be a bit of a challenge for your GM, you might want to spend a few minutes, or a few emails, discussing the potential unique characteristics of that race with the GM so that both of you are aware of the implications of playing a race that is immune to some of the basic tactics that the GM has used to create challenging encounters.
Oh, wait, WHO made the sacrifice?
But you have a point. He did eventually give Rapunzel the opportunity to make her own sacrifice. But did that make all of his previous perfidy OK?
Not to me.
Aladdin, by contrast, is a character who also "stole" but his situation was clearly a much more dire and understandable one, and when he did steal on screen, he gave the bread to starving children, providing evidence of his true inner nature.
The Tangled guy was not just a thief, he was in league with OTHER thieves, and abandoned them when his own neck was on the line. Not because he was forced into it, but apparently because he preferred it.
I know most people don't give a crap about that sort of thing in movies their kids watch.
But I'm a prude that way. I do care.
Jaelithe, it is always amusing to me how some of my posts get removed but a post accusing me of having my sense of humor surgically removed is perfectly acceptable on these boards...
I will admit that my sense of humor is unusual. Like Knight, I find movies like the Jackass movies to be a blight upon civilization and the subtle allure of the Three Stooges has always eluded me.
But my personal perspective is that my sense of humor is... selective, and generally reacts to humor that requires a bit of cleverness.
And you know what? Twice on this thread I've stated that my initial reaction to the whole "murder hobo" thing was "heh, that's sort of clever."
But now it's becoming a meme, as I said.
But fine, you don't care. So what if we lose a few prudish parents and their kids. No loss. I mean it's not like this hobby has a reputation that already makes it somewhat difficult for some people to accept it.
Done with this.
Jaelithe, sure, that's all true, but the sniping and babble you refer to is just standard internet messageboard stuff that any parent who's spent any time on the internet will see as noise. Calling the game a "murder hobo" enterprise is not the same as "you suck" "No, you suck!" When the gamer community more or less accepts that the game itself is an enterprise in greedy serial killing, that is a message that goes beyond internet noise and undermines the goal we have of bringing new players into the community.
But hey, so what, right? If that sort of thing bothers them, who needs 'em?
Heh, the "Disney parents are cursed" meme has been around since Bambi.
Just to address the moral ambiguity of Tangled a minute, it's not anything about "disobeying parents" that bothers me. It's the male "love interest" character who is an actual, by choice thief, who then gleefully abandons his comrades to prison and/or death as he does all he can to protect his own skin. Even after he meets Rapunzel, he continues to exhibit questionable morality.
The whole "redemption" thing falls sort of flat when he never does anything to actually redeem himself.
Repetition is the key to rhetorical success Sin. If you can say it more frequently than people feel like refuting it, you'll eventually win. It's like politics.
Fabius Maximus wrote:
I can't believe that you all are discussing this with a straight face. The term is in itself a joke, for gods' sake.
Last I checked, this entire endeavor with all it's millions of words of discussion is a game, for god's sake.
The goal of this discussion is to KEEP the term a joke, because it has been evolving into a gaming meme. It sort of ceased being technically a "joke" when people started coming up with ways to incorporate it into PFS play, which is essentially making it part of the game.
Tactics, not sure if you're referring to the song in "Frozen" or not, but the song that comes to mind to me as a "DAT SONG" candidate would be "Let it Go" which I thought was an incredible song with a completely un-Disney hint of bad-girl awesomeness. Loved that song, loved the animation that went with it and loved the whole concept of the scene and its implications.
It's hard to think that discussing any of that could be a "spoiler" since it's all over the internet as a promo for the movie anyway, but that was totally cool.
Wildebob, I suppose my own approach is to lead by example. I am frequently the person in our group that points out behavior that is bordering on the less than heroic. I then attempt to lead by example if I am a player, or I point out that behavior has consequences if I am the GM.
For example, if I am the GM and the players recover loot from the bandit party that includes a rare locket inscribed "To Sam, with love from Rosie", if they come back to town and attempt to pawn it off, instead of at least looking for Rosie or Sam, it is quite possible that the pawnbroker or town jeweler might well know Rosie, and inform the group that since Sam's murder, Rosie has been struggling mightily to raise her young son and that the locket would be a great blessing for Rosie, either to remind her of her beloved murdered Sam, or to sell it herself to allow her to send young Frodo to wizard school or something.
Then it's up to the party whether they want to "do the right thing" or not. It is very rare that the party, when made aware of the situation, does not say "Well, where can we find this poor lass and return her locket to her?"
If the loot is always some generic pile of coins and gems, the PCs really don't have opportunities to display such altruistic behavior, so I make sure my loot piles have those opportunities.
Not even this one, which is actually TITLED: "Profession: Murderhobo" which has specifically asked about how to create the profession within PFS so it can be used as a means to acquire wealth using the profession rules?
Since you have been a participating member of that thread, Sin, I will have to assume that you will resort now to some rhetorical or semantic defense of your assertion that there is no current thread about making murderhobo a profession in spite the the thread literally TITLED that.
Oh well, now the rhetorical/semantic games begin...
Sweater, I pointed out in my original post that my initial reaction to the term was that it was clever and had enough of a kernel of truth to it that it resonated with the community.
My issue is that the term seems to be becoming pervasive and is used casually as if everyone simply accepts the concept that playing Pathfinder is essentially pretending to be a bunch of greedy serial killers.
If I'm a parent reading these boards to see if I want my kids to play this game, my reaction to that sort of assumed amorality and needless violence is likely to be that maybe my kids shouldn't play after all.
Anyway, probably pointless tilting at windmills again. Memes have their own inertia and this attempt to deflect the trajectory of this one is probably doomed to fail.
But I at least had to make one attempt to stand up and defend the hobby and the way I play the game against the perception that we all just like to kill innocent beings and take their stuff.
Oh, and I am well aware of the difference between "slander" and "libel." But the reality is that people understand "slander" to be used colloquially and casually to describe both, where "libel" is not generally understood to be used that way. And I didn't want to call this thread "The "Murderhobo" slander/lilbel..." just because I didn't feel it was necessary.
I personally would not describe the Fellowship of the Ring as "murder hobos." They were on a sacred quest and mostly tried to avoid combat until it was thrust upon them. They certainly didn't wander aimlessly around taking odd jobs here and there, they had specific objectives at all times, in fact you could say Frodo was under an actual geas.
My issues with the use of the term "murder hobo" is that it is usually applied indiscriminately to any PC group as if it is a common occurrence for even good aligned parties to simply roam around killing things and taking their stuff.
I really have not played in games where that dynamic is followed. In the instances where my groups have killed things, there has always been a good reason, and it has usually been provoked. My characters and groups also don't view innocent sentient beings as a source of loot. Well, most of my groups. We have had some players on occasion to do seem to have that sort of attitude, but that seems to change as they adopt our table mores, which generally don't include "murder hobo-ness".
I am sensitive to the fact that these boards are probably read by more than a few lurkers looking to see if playing Pathfinder is an activity they, or their children, should get engaged with. The casual acceptance of the concept that Pathfinder is generally a game about murder hobos is probably not the image we should want to project to people who are not "in on the joke". Not if we want the hobby to be inclusive and attract people by virtue of its positive aspects.
Franco, the only organized play I have ever done was a short campaign when 4e first came out. I can't speak to how PFS play is pursued. I will say that I would play the same way if I were in a PFS campaign, and if pursuing actual heroism in PFS play is actively discouraged either by the GM or the other players, I'd just stop playing PFS.
Koloktroni, I concur that the game rewards such behavior.
In fact this came up recently in our Carrion Crown campaign. I now run my games without XP. I no longer even think of XP as any sort of motivation for my character. I would like to say I never did, but when I first started playing the game decades ago, I will admit that the acquisition of XP was an important thing for my game play.
Our Carrion Crown GM is running the campaign "by the book" which includes gaining and leveling up by XP. So at one point in the game (and I won't be specific to avoid spoilers) we were in a position where we had some activity that seemed to fit our group's overall purpose in protecting the town, but as I suggested that we do that activity, one of the players said "well, I don't see any point to doing that since we won't get any XP and the GM has said there's no treasure for it."
I managed to convince that player that our characters were not motivated by the pursuit of experience points and that it was consistent with our agreement with the town that we do the activity, so we did. But there for a moment the whole "what's the point of doing it if we don't get XP or treasure" reared its head, and I do think that is a problem with the way the game rewards certain morally questionably actions while not rewarding morally appropriate actions.
But, as I said, we eventually avoided that temptation and did the heroic thing anyway. And I like to think that's not uncommon in this hobby.
Snorter "fair" is a context-sensitive term.
While a fight that had a 50-50 chance for the players to win or lose might be "fair" in the sense that it means neither side had an advantage over the other, I would assert quite confidently that the vast, vast majority of gamers would consider a campaign where they lost every other encounter to be far from "fair" in the sense of "fair" meaning "meets the expectations of the participants."
In PF terms "fair" means "the PCs are probably going to win unless they do something really, really stupid, or of this is some climactic boss fight that requires a real chance of losing to make meaningful."
I'll admit it. The first time I saw the "adventurers are really just murder hobos" thing, I thought it was humorous and had just enough of a kernel of truth in it to make the humor relevant.
But since then the meme has become so pervasive that the idea that adventurers are "murder hobos" has come so far that it actually has spawned a thread about creating a profession for "murderhobo", and in that thread the concept that most, if not all, adventurers are really just loot-grubbing, shoot-first, wandering killers seems to be accepted at face value.
Well, I think it's time to stand up and defend my hobby.
I've played this game for decades, and have played every alignment, in parties composed of every alignment and I have not once played a character, or played in a group, that would fit the general description of "murder hobo."
Even my evil characters.... heck probably ESPECIALLY my evil characters, have a much more diabolical scheme they are pursuing than randomly wandering around killing creatures and taking their stuff.
For my good/neutral characters I cannot think of a single time that my character has been part of any sort of wandering group of malcontents seeking to pillage the villages of other sentient creatures just because they are green.
The vast, vast majority of my characters have been part of a group of characters that have received some lawful designation to go and do something about some threat the town, city or kingdom is under. And it is pretty rare even then for my characters or groups to simply loot and pillage the villages randomly.
I have mentioned here before that it is my general practice when playing good characters to return captured loot to the proper authorities for distribution. I can't even remember the number of side quests my parties have taken to return a precious heirloom to the family of the murdered victim we have found in a goblin or kobold lair. One module that we did ended up with the party recovering an absolute treasure trove of stolen items, probably tens of thousands of gold worth. We loaded up all we could in a cart and hauled it to town, and then brought the townspeople back to the lair to recover the rest. We received a decent reward and the goodwill of the townspeople for our efforts.
While it is certainly possible to play the game as "murder hobos" and no doubt lots of people do play it that way, all of my groups have always taken their role as heroes seriously and have attempted to be heroic in their actions.
Now, having said that, when I do play an evil character, I have no problem with "murder hoboing" actions, but in general I have other goals that are put at risk by that sort of behavior. The number of times any of my characters has simply roamed through a village of any sentient creatures and slaughtered them indiscriminately for the explicit purpose of taking their stuff to enrich my character could probably be counted on the fingers of one hand.
Or maybe even one finger.
Seeley, just so people reading this thread don't get confused, I believe you are using a different definition of "mass production" than I am using when I compare and contrast "technology" with "magic".
Your definition seems to be saying that a "mass produced" item is one that has essentialy the same properties as a bunch of other identical items. Your example of two +1 swords being identical is an example of that. To me that suggests that magic is predictable and the results are standardized such that many magical items would be essentially indistinguishable from their equivalents (most +1 rings look and act the same, etc.)
My definition is not about the end result, but the process, and I am using "mass production" in the purely technical sense that items are manufactured through a process of interchangeable parts and are assembled in an assembly line process, so that the efficiency of production is greatly increased which drives the cost down and produces massively more finished items than could be produced by individuals creating them one at a time.
In that sense there is no way to "mass produce" magic items. Each magic item has to be enchanted by the same time consuming process that every other magic item is produced with, whether that is done by one lone wizard in a lonely tower on a hill, or a bunch of wizards in some sort of magic sword "factory."
The number of magic swords you can create is directly dependent on the number of magic crafters who have to do them one at a time. In technology you can automate everything, eventually removing the need for manual intervention at all, so that your mass produced swords can come off the assembly line at a rate of hundreds or thousands per hour.
I suppose if you somehow enslaved thousands of wizards and forced them to do nothing but make magic swords, you could create some sort of "mass magic production" but I have never seen anything like that in any game world I've played in, and to me that would introduce some difficulties in verisimilitude since a thousand wizards capable of making swords would be a formidable force requiring tremendous exertion of power to keep chained to their work tables, and it is likely the effort to keep them enslaved would probably not be worth the production of magic swords in the end.
Just my $.02.
My problem with "profession: murder hobo" is more about "hobo" than "murder." I know that there are people who make a profession out of begging or otherwise doing "hobo"" activities, but I struggle with the entire concept of a profession that is essentially the condition of not pursuing a profession....
I dunno if I'd allow it in PFS play or not. I'd probably bounce it off other PFS GMs for advice.
Lazar, you are describing a society that is drastically different than my own campaign world, and different from any campaign I've played in. Your description seems to be an attempt to match the worst periods of dark ages European earth history.
I deliberately, long ago, chose not to have my world operate that way. My world is deliberately more enlightened. Most farmers own their own land. The merchant class is very large and there is quite a bit more social mobility than it seems you would expect. The average hard-working humanoid in my world has a decent chance to have a comfortable, if not extravagant,life.
I just like it better that way. I prefer to tell my stories in that sort of world. I don't really care if it matches European history, because historical accuracy is not any sort of goal for my games. I figure that my world evolved its own way, and the presence of magic alone generally provides a significant productivity boost to the world, meaning there is more wealth to go around.
Call it the RPG trickle-down economy if you like. But as it turns out, my world's approach is much closer to the economics described in the Pathfinder profession rules than what you describe.
Tiny Coffee Golem wrote:
I don't think I do "magic as a tech thing." I think I use magic as a "problem solving thing" and sometimes it can be used to solve the same problems that technology does. Sometimes better, sometimes not as good. Again, scalability is a huge difference between magic and technology.
Mass transit is done differently in different cities. The main capital city uses what are essentially magical platforms which people can walk onto and will whisk them to a pre-determined destination, sort of like glorified airport moving sidewalks, but not constrained to land. The elven city uses a wide variety of magical chariots that respond to requests from passengers and are generally in the shape of animals the elves love. The main wizard/sorcerer city mostly operates with a series of linked portals. Although that system is actually worldwide if you have the right command words and the wealth to use them. Most require sacrificing a gem or some other valuable item to trigger.
If by "how" you mean "what spells did you use to create them" I just flat out made them up and the explanation is that most of them are custom magical creations, sometimes requiring the cooperation of multiple powerful wizards.
I forget what spells were used, but we essential created large public TVs that we could instantly address the entire city. It was used to update the public with important information, most importantly when the city walls were breached during a siege and we had to evacuate them.
Claxon, in my world there isn't a "receiving device" for these sorts of public announcements, there are large holographic illusions projected above the city. There are more private means that the powerful city leaders use to communicate that do have "receivers', mostly in the form off crystal balls.
Abraham, that thread is one that actually led me to make some modifications to my world's economic assumptions. I didn't follow it exactly, I made some assumptions about economies of scale (a farmer, wife and kids would live quite a bit cheaper than four farmers, for example).
In the end it was clear to me that a suitably industrious and perhaps fortunate farmer could become reasonably comfortable.
My own campaign world is not modeled after the earth's dark ages. It's more enlightened and less stratified into economic classes. "Farmer" is a description that could describe a single family tending a few acres mostly for their own use, to a "Farmer Maggot" type of farm with lots of extended family members contributing to farming a very large farm, providing a significant income from the process.
I'd say he's confusing at least history and fantasy. Not to mention the difference between people who own farms and people who are hired or indentured to perform menial tasks for those who own farms.
It depends on the city. A "typical city" will usually have magically operating water systems, mass transit, street lights, public address, mostly stuff to make living in a city more comfortable and less likely to suffer plagues or rampant crime.
The richest and most powerful cities will have much more ostentatious magical items, such as magical fountains, entertainment illusions, magically enhanced architecture (there is a floating palace in the capital city of the richest nation), portals to distant locations, temperature control of major public buildings, etc.
Public display of magical artistry and skill is a means of demonstrating international prestige.
Actually LazarX, magic items that can be purchased by the average FARMER is, and has been demonstrated to be, completely consistent with the rules.
Nobody mentioned "the average serf" until you did just now in a transparent attempt at exaggeration to try to make your point, which just demonstrates that exaggeration is required to do so.
If i had to rely on "wondrous magic' to make my stories interesting.... well, I wouldn't. I'd hang up my GM hat since I clearly was no longer worthy of it.
No Drachasor, I started this thread for exactly the reason stated. Which was to see if, and how many, people would argue that an individual player should put their own fun above the fun of the group.
I expected to see a lot of rationalization of this sort of behavior, and i did.
I expected to see a lot of ad hominen attacks, and I did.
I expected to see a lot of reductio ad absurdum, and I did.
I really did just want to see if my understanding of the dynamics I've seen on other threads was accurate.
And I see that it was.
Drachasor, I think the debate on this thread has been pretty even so far, certainly there is no 4:1 advantage for the player fun = sacred quest group. And this is a forum, which has debate as a fundamental purpose, it's not a game table where we are expected to cooperate. So your attempted analogy fails on every level.
But don't let that stop you from continuing to assert that people should put their fun above the fun of the people they play with.
Not that it would anyway.
Frozen deliberately turned several Disney tropes on their heads,
not just Prince Charming
My daughter loves Disney and so we see pretty much every Disney movie made. I tend to view the movies much more critically than she does.
I liked "Frozen" more than any DIsney movie in a long time. I even liked the songs.
Far superior to "Tangled". At least as good, and I think slightly better than, "Brave."
I especially think "Frozen" is one of the best movies Disney has made for young girls.
OK, one last, last time... :)
In a situation where the basic "problem" is defined as "everyone at my table doesn't like the way I play" I assert one final time that it is almost ALWAYS going to be the case that the one person whose playstyle doesn't match the other four is the one that is causing the problem.
EVEN IF SOME OTHER GROUP BELIEVES THEY ARE ACTUALLY 'RIGHT' on the issue. That doesn't matter. What matters is that they are trying to exert their personal preferences in opposition to four people who disagree.
To continue to argue that the one person should just keep on doing what is pissing off four people just because some OTHER group of people agree he/she is "right" is a counter-productive activity if the GOAL is to game in harmony with the original group.
There usually is no absolute "RIGHT" way to game anyway. What is right varies from group to group. This is a statement that should be axiomatic on these boards the number of times it is asserted in thread after thread. The "wrong" person in a group is not the one who is violating some sort of hypothetical over-arching absolute set of gaming "rules," it is the one who can''t get along with the people at their table.
Which ought to be so damned obvious that it should not need to be said. Much less repeated over and over.
My final comment here, just because it's come up twice.
This "the complainer is always wrong" trope reference is a sort of appeal to authority fallacy, where wikitropes is presumed to be some sort of authority.
But beyond that, I have not even asserted that the complainer is always wrong. I just said that the complainer is USUALLY wrong, in the situation I described, which is ONE PLAYER is complaining about the reaction of THEIR GROUP.
So even to appeal to the trope indicates that the point is being missed.
Anyway, as I've said twice now, it is very, very clear to me that this messageboard has a very active and vocal contingent of commenters who insist upon asserting the obviously illogical proposition that EVERY PLAYER should be able to PURSUE THEIR PERSONAL IDEA OF FUN, no matter what else is going on AT A TABLE WITH OTHER PEOPLE.
So I guess if people read that crap and can't immediately recognize that such a position is nothing but a guarantee of colliding versions of fun-seeking, then they probably aren't the sort of people who react to reason anyway and so it is pointless to try to reach them that way.
For the rest of the readers out there, I'll just remind you of what you were taught in pre-school, which is that in order to have fun in groups, you have to compromise your own personal desires from time to time.
Yeah, I probably was too harsh there Sin, but I do get tired of all the "this is the XXX trope" commentary and when I go read the trope I'm all "what th' heck? This isn't ANYTHING like that..."
Anyway,I think I'm done with this. I do appreciate that there has been some reasonable conversation on this thread, but the constant assertion that one player's search for fun is some sort of sacred quest continues in complete obliviousness of the fact that the table is full of players who can't all pursue their quest without some collision with other quests.
The point is that we can't all do what we want all the time when engaged in group activities.
Seriously people, this is the first lesson that children are taught in kindergarten. It really, really is.
There needs to be a trope about trying to prove one's point by contriving a "there's a trope about it" argument.
MMCJawa, I already stated that this thread was about the continued assertion that a player has a right to pursue their version of fun regardless of the desires of their gaming partners. I believe that's more than clear enough to discuss. I'm sure those reading this can recognize the sorts of threads I'm talking about.
mpl, I suppose I'm not much in the business of providing "validation" or "sympathy" to people just because they posted their frustrations on a website. As I said, I believe the majority of those sorts of things are posted by the person who is most likely causing the problem so why would I want to do anything to give them validation of their non-productive behaviors?
Anyway, as I said, it's clear that there is a very large contingent of posters on this particular game message board who believe that players have the right and obligation to shove their version of fun down the throats of their playing partners. The irony of that position seems to utterly escape them.
mpl, and how is that approach different than my default "get together and talk this out, find a compromise or look for a different group" advice?
Sometimes I think the threads go on and on with thousands of words deconstructing the personal motivations and life histories of people nobody ever met and never will meet just because it gives people a chance to vent their own private frustrations and project them on a group of strangers.
... and I'll add to that the observation that in my experience, the people who start throwing around words like "douche" or "jerk" on the slightest hint of pretext are the ones doing the most obvious projection.
mpl, the simple realities of probability and group dynamics would indicate to me that at least 75-80% of the time, the person coming here to complain is likely the problem person.
That's why my advice is almost always in the "get together and talk this out" vein, instead of "yeah, you're group sucks. Buncha pansies probably" vein.
Every now and then I'll see a thread where I will conclude that there really is a problem with the group, not the individual, but that's rare.
And you know what mpl? It generally has exactly the same solution. Talk it out and work out a compromise, or find a different group.
Bringing back some sort of "Neener, neener, I talked to all the 'experts' and they told me you guys all suck" response is pretty much never going to help.
@Mark, once again I find our playstyles to be similar in the fundamentals.
As the GM I consider it a fairly major part of "my job" to make the game as fun as possible for everyone at the table.
That means I have had quite a few conversations with the odd person out at the table to let them know that they aren't really playing the same game the rest of us are playing. I pretty much let them know that there are two probable outcomes from the situation:
1. The rest of the group eventually votes the odd one out of the game.
My understanding is that people game together to have fun together. If someone gains the majority of their fun that is in some way dependent on other people at the table having less fun, I'll eventually ask them to find another game, or not invite them back after a chapter closes.
It's not really a "needs of the many" thing for me, it's a "We're here to relax and recharge after dealing with the daily crap of our lives" thing. Any player that is adding, instead of reducing, stress at the table simply does not belong.