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GM Pranking


My group's currently playing what we call a "roulette" campaign where we trade off GMs every adventure and its been pretty fun so far. All but one of us has GMed for this group before. As GMs none of us are strangers to playing the GM card and cheating a little bit to make the game more fun for everyone, but we never blatantly state that we are cheating the system and if a GM got a rule wrong at a player's expense we generally try to reach a compromise.

The other day our party was ambushed while we were asleep at camp (apparently NPCs make bad sentries) and I rolled a flat 3 (no ranks or WIS) on my Perception check to wake up from the sound of combat. The GM said that I had failed the roll and missed the surprise round and was automatically last on initiative. Okay, that's fine, but I didn't think a 3 was actually a failure.

Looking up the rules I quickly found that I had actually succeeded at the roll: Perception check to hear the sound of battle is a DC: -10. You get -10 to Perception checks made to hear things while asleep, therefore my roll was a -7 and beat the -10 DC. When I brought this up before the surprise round was over my GM simply said, "Nope, GMs can cheat you are asleep."

I was kind of peeved especially because he let everyone have there armor on despite no-one having Endurance, so I was really the only one being screwed over. It wasn't a huge deal as I am the healer anyway but I still have a thirst for revenge.

When it's my turn at bat I kind of want to get him back and this is where you guys come in: I need a prank to pull when I'm GMing the campaign that won't do any kind of permanent damage to his character and that blatantly breaks the rules in a situation where game mechanics and rules are important (combat is the most obvious). Something funny and tongue-in-cheek. Not something wholly malicious or detrimental to the other players.

Embarrassing is always funny. Try having some brownies or something even a mite smaller "Ride" the PC...they wake up having a tiny rope or some such looped around their heads in their mouths when they suddenly hear "Giddy up little pony". Shouldn't require more than a round to roll over or shake them off, but it's dang funny.

Stealthed tiny creatures while they are asleep...just tell him he can't make the roll :)

roll to wake up today..... Im sorry you have failed to wake up, lose a day of adventuring.

Pick an important combat and then hit him with sleep or hold person, so that he gets to sit out for a few rounds. Don't even attack him, just let him sit for a few rounds. It is excusable in-combat that they would target threats to try and remove them and you get to return the favor of making him miss a couple of rounds of the fight--plus you don't have to break any rules to do it.

The thing to be aware of is to not gloat over this. Just hit him with the spell, if it fails do it again, and then move on without comment. You are sated, he is none the wiser, and you can go on adventuring and being friends. Good luck!


Put them up against something with Combat Reflexes, but never have it actually take more than one AoO unless it's against the guy in question.

If the guy in question has Combat Reflexes, give the BBEG Improved [every combat maneuver], then have it use all those combat maneuvers on him. AoO? No. How about now? No. Now? No.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

I like the idea with the mites/brownies, and the idea of embarrassing a character can be rather entertaining. Just know when to be done with it. Don't start a cycle of revenge.

However, another entertaining idea is maybe a Kobold "Duelist" with things like Improved Dirty Trick and Improved Steal. Drop the character's pants, steal his shoes, pull his cloak over his head, steal his belt and his string/rope, then book it into the woods cackling all the way.

Silent Saturn wrote:

Put them up against something with Combat Reflexes, but never have it actually take more than one AoO unless it's against the guy in question.

If the guy in question has Combat Reflexes, give the BBEG Improved [every combat maneuver], then have it use all those combat maneuvers on him. AoO? No. How about now? No. Now? No.

I like option 1.


Pathfinder Companion Subscriber
Serisan wrote:
Silent Saturn wrote:

Put them up against something with Combat Reflexes, but never have it actually take more than one AoO unless it's against the guy in question.

If the guy in question has Combat Reflexes, give the BBEG Improved [every combat maneuver], then have it use all those combat maneuvers on him. AoO? No. How about now? No. Now? No.

I like option 1.

The only problem with this approach is it could be viewed as malicious since it would mean extra damage to that character, or otherwise would potentially screw that character over.

Make it something light-hearted that everyone (including the target of your prank) can get a chuckle out of, agree mistakes were made and make a truce, then move on.

Don't be mean. Be creative.

1 person marked this as a favorite.

a rogue npc armed with vasaline, sugar, 3 eggs, a tennis shoe, a barrel of glitter, half a bag of sprinkles, a constipated donkey and a penchant for show tunes.

Said PC wakes up in a room with no windows no doors and tied to the floor with said npc. Let the revenge begin!!

Have mites or or some fey type creature steal his weapons. To make it fun have him wake up to see his weapon floating away, carried away by an invisible creature. Make sure none of his ideas work to get the weapon back. If he grabs ahold of it he is just dragged along with the weapon.

You can also have him wake up with pink armor decorated with flowers. Nothing he tries can get rid of the decorations. Even if he has it painted goes back to being pink with flours after about 30 minutes.

4 people marked this as a favorite.

I think the OP is entirely a bad idea. Your friend wasn't playing a prank on you, just keeping things flowing (and used a bad choice of words). Your decision to 'prank' him is down right stupid, and not fitting your role as GM. There is no 'getting him back,' because he didn't do anything to you. He was the GM; he was keeping the scenario fun for everyone as best he could. It wasn't about you.

If you're going to do any kind of prank at all, I say do it with RP humor, rather than through mechanics. And if its through mechanics, it can't single out an individual.

Maybe introduce a horny cat that meows all night and won't let players sleep (in reference to your vengance). Make this cat somehow end up wherever players end up, and consistently bother them at night. If they seek to investigate, keep things humorous. If they just straight up go to kill it, make it burst and splatter goo onto everything in a 10 ft radius, leaving a strange odor. Those caught in the goo smell for 3 days, and take a -3 on charisma based checks. Then set the players up to painfully fail a bunch of non essential charisma checks, which may then make the players henceforth be known as the 'smelly lords,' or whatever seems appropriate to the story.

Or if the players try and trap the cat, or engage in a non-lethal solution, let it turn out that the cat is the unfortunate familiar of an unfortunate wizzard or sorcerer that's been tailing you, or otherwise following a similar path. This sorcerer will probably be non-consequential, but may be an NPC subsequent GMs would also want to make use of.

You get the idea. But it's only funny if everyone's eventually in on the joke. "Pranks" are generally a bad idea, and you might as well direct your mischievous streak into planning mischievous encounters.

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.

The title of this thread reminded me of an old saying: "Carpe DM - Seize the Dungeon Master!"

Cursed the form of the item he wants, or only affect his race, or gender.

You could have one of these take an abnormal likeing to him.

Also, instead of physical damage/embarrassment, you can have BBEG constantly make the PC the butt of jokes or taunts. RP a reason for the BBEG to notice the PC moreso than the others.

While the party is sleeping Have them all roll for initiative, tell the player he now sees them all as hostile threats. Add in a few monsters, wait until the entire party is dead and he is on his last leg.

Tell him he wakes up from his nightmare. Everyone laughs a little at his expense. Be gracious with the XP rewards.

have the ennemies equipped with magic items that have restrictions like:
goblins, male, 2.5 feet tall, green, bad breath, name of Slasher.
Let them have awesome magic items like +5 vorpal, and then when the group thinks it's payday, then tell them that those 100 restrictions actually reduce the selling price of everything by 99.9% and they get 10 gold for that weapon.

Of course only tell them the restrictions and the price after they've cast analyse dweomer or something, add a little fooling magic in there.

It's perhaps not what you're looking for because it's strictly speaking legal, but it shows that the GM can do anything, and that you would never allow it if a player wants to craft something like that.

Cursed Items are always fun too.

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