GM Mug's page

3,544 posts. Alias of Mug.

So I recently read a discussion between a GM and the players about the speed of the game and how things were moving slower than usual due to life, etc...

I realize that's a common challenge in this pbp community and so I got to thinking about ways to overcome that particular challenge. Specifically, having a game move slowly because the GM is busy. I got a hint of an idea about having a Dual-GM'd game. This format could help or even eliminate some time-related problems some pbp's face.

However I realize this Dual-GM format could create a host of entirely new problems, and I'm interested in your thoughts on the subject. Hundreds if not thousands of GMs and players hit this board regularly, and I'm trying to tap into your vast experience, intelligence and common sense.

    Dual-GM Format Challenges
  • Required some moderate/heavy discussion and planning between two people, not just one person managing his/her own schedule.
  • Differing ideas and goals for the campaign, either overarching or encounter to encounter
  • Two different GM 'voices' as each GM puts his/her own personal touch and flair into every post and every encounter. Possibly creating confusion and/or discordance with the players and flow of the game.
  • **Any other challenges you all could see occurring here?**

    Dual-GM Format Positives
  • More GM 'availability' throughout the course of the game, daily, weekly, etc...
  • Potential for more (double) creativity and quality as each GM has more time (and energy) to put into each post.
  • Slower 'wear and tear' on each GM as they can sometimes take a backseat as the other GM handles a particular encounter or life creates some time challenges for a short or long period of time.
  • Fewer 'dead' games as if one GM wants to/has to disappear for long enough a regular game would perish, the other GM can step in and carry the torch solo (or find a replacement for the missing GM).
  • **Other positives you all can think of with this format?**

I'm eager to hear your thoughts and ideas, either for or against. I could see a game run in this format either going very well or very bad. Also I'm sure much would depend on the the GM's involved, some might thrive in this format while others it would chafe.

Ultimately, if this is viewed in a positive light I'd like to implement this and start a game. So I suppose you should specify, along with any input, whether you'd be interested in participating as one of the two GMs.

Thanks for the read!

(I couldn't figure out a better place to put this post. It's specific to PbP gaming and exposure to the community here of actual GMs and Gamers alike made this the best place in my mind.)

Pardon my B.S. for a moment as I try to split this hair into teeny tiny pieces.

Question: Does shooting or throwing into melee still grant the -4 penalty to the attack roll... IF the friendly PC involved is a summoned monster?

The PRD wrote:

Shooting or Throwing into a Melee: If you shoot or throw a ranged weapon at a target engaged in melee with a friendly character, you take a –4 penalty on your attack roll. Two characters are engaged in melee if they are enemies of each other and either threatens the other. (An unconscious or otherwise immobilized character is not considered engaged unless he is actually being attacked.)

If your target (or the part of your target you're aiming at, if it's a big target) is at least 10 feet away from the nearest friendly character, you can avoid the –4 penalty, even if the creature you're aiming at is engaged in melee with a friendly character.

If your target is two size categories larger than the friendly characters it is engaged with, this penalty is reduced to –2. There is no penalty for firing at a creature that is three size categories larger than the friendly characters it is engaged with.

Precise Shot: If you have the Precise Shot feat, you don't take this penalty.

The Truth I Believe: The summoned creature is considered friendly, as it doesn't attack you and other rules-y reasons and therefore must be considered a friendly thus creating the "Firing into Melee" scenario. I accept this as the most likely truth.

The Truth I Want: Player Characters can choose to consider the summoned creature a friendly or not a friendly, and thus can shoot or throw into melee with reckless abandon and not incur the -4 penalty.

The Gibberish: I've got lots of reasons to want the 2nd idea to be the case. Such as, it's just a thing, not a real creature and will go away soon anyways, I don't care if I hit it, it's not my friend. I brought you into this world and I can take you out of it and make another one just like you... and so on and so forth.

Someone please tell me my desired truth is silly, ridiculous, foolhardy and entirely without merit so I can stop thinking about it and get on with my gaming life!

Thank you.

I'm interesting in playing in one of these APs.

Several months ago I offered a Quid Pro Quo arrangement with an enterprising pbp-er. I agreed to run an AP of his/her choice, if they would include me in a Skull&Shackles pbp --which they ran.

Things went splendidly for awhile, but then the other GM ran into some tough times IRL, dropped out of the Carrion Crown game and stopped running the S&S AP. Although my Carrion Crown game is still running strong, I find my PC itch still needs scratching.

So first I'm appealing to any healthy, diligent, 'endure-the-end' GM's --who are interested in running one of those two APs-- to start a game and hopefully include me in the group.

If no such GM exists, then I'd like to offer the same deal as I gave that first GM, if you will run an AP for me, I will run one of your choosing.

Once we get some GM candidates then we can work our the details of the game(s). I will say I like to post a least once a day, so a faster paced game, and I'm not interested in games that are less active than 1+ posts a day. Thanks for your time and consideration. Any questions just fire away.

PS. While I know many of you will read this and desire to say "If you start either of these games, I'd sure like to join!" While that is incredibly interesting and probably pertinent once the games are gearing up to start, it's not horribly germane to this discussion.

Thanks everyone!

Pruner stands quietly, tying knots as he so often does, leaned against the heavy wooden pillars inside Vaynes Trading, the merchant front where you've spent much of your training year. There are some crates and small barrels in your customary meeting spot, Pruner long ago instilling in you the advantages of meeting out in the open, instead of a small room with few exits and no visiblity. Seeing your enemies, and letting them see you, is not the same as them listening in on your conversations, or understanding that conversation. He watches from beneath dark eyebrows as each of you enter, scarcely acknowledging you, except for a slight incline of his head or a quick glance at the haphazard meeting area you all are so familiar with.

You each are returning after your longest absence yet, Pruner sending out for bigger and bigger assignments, some making sense, and others not... but you know each of them is a test. You've caught glimpses of other Pruners, or at least watchers, as you've completed these tasks, probably because they've made little to no efforts to hide themselves -you are in training after all. But this meeting is different, this night's conversation could mark the end of your training as you all so deeply yearn for, each for your own separate reasons. Everything you've learned has been leading you to this moment, the business dealings, the trade negotiations, the parties, the midnight meetings, the weapons trainings and all the rest.

Pruner sighs quietly, a clear sign of irritation, as he waits for everyone to appear and seat. His hands remain in constant motion, tying and untying, tying and untying.

Go ahead an mark your entrance. The setting is the open-air area of your merchant building, among some crates, barrels, ropes and things along one side of the open loading area. The walls of Vaynes Trading rise up around the open area, and the entrance is a stout and wide wooden gate covered in reinforcing iron strips to create a surprisingly sturdy portal. There is a recessed portion of the loading area (1st floor), underneath the second floor of your building, and thick logs keep the upper portion (2nd floor) supported. We'll have time later to talk about ourselves, but this is just your entrance, descriptions, etc... You all know Pruner, and each other. Lets see what we have going here :)

So lets get talking! We've got a few big decisions ahead of us.

First item on the list. What do we want to play?
- Do we want to choose/create our favorite characters and then decide on the setting?
- Or just choose the setting and then create our characters?

Some brainstorming:
Pirates - always fun and seems people get more creative in a pirate setting.
Evil - Like a would be elite team of assassins traveling all over for contracts, or a new gang formed in an urban setting trying to rise to the top.
Classic - Rescue the Kings daughter from the wicked witch of the west... or something classicy like that.
Fun Race - Maybe a group of a flying/rare race in the APG wants to go see the world and experience life 'on the outside' perhaps?

What do you think and what other ideas does anyone have?

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So I've been thinking of trying this method of group and campaign selection for a week or two. While this is mostly a 'checking interest' thread, I'll probably continue with those who respond to a full on adventure. So here we go.

Who wants to play? That's the first question. Who wants to play in another pbp and has the time to do so? If you are such individual, please express your interest. I'm going to ask for some odd details along with your interest.

For Example:
1. I, Mug, want to play in another pbp please. The 'please' is optional
2. I typically post x to x times a day.
3. I currently play in x amount of pbp games.
4. Some adventures I'm interested in are; Homebrew, Carrion Crown, Skull & Shackles.... You get the idea here
5. I usually/would like to fill the role of party ______. What role do you want to fill?
6. I would be willing to fill a different role. Or not.
7. I'm a Sagittarius, enjoy basketball, and am fighting a losing battle with hair loss. This is the 'about me' section, and is optional.

We choose a group... well mostly I choose the group based on your answers above, and any other questions I may pose to you.

The selected group chooses the AP, or they might choose a homebrew or a one-off. The only thing I'm sure of on this one is I'll mostly likely start at a level 1 or level 2.

We go make characters, play, and have a marvelous time.

If you're interested in my odd experiment/interest check/adventure, please post the questions and your answers I listed under 'First'. Hop to it!

It's a dark evening, raindrops are falling lightly, and the torches and lanterns are the only source of light. You, and several others, wait at the entrance to the Restlands, wherein lies the waiting grave of the good Professor. Kendra, his daughter, stands with you all, watching as the wagon carrying her fathers corpse approaches slowly in the distance.

Tears or rain, you cannot tell which, line her face, a face with too many lines of grief for one so young. Turning to look at each of you, she gathers her breath, gathering strength, "Thank you for being here, I know it would mean much to Father, to have old friends here. Please feel free to introduce yourselves, and if any of you do not wish to take a place as pall-bearer please make it known. I am Kendra, daughter of Professor Lorrimor, to help break the ice, if you'll excuse me. Kimberly, would you like to join me? After holding her hand out for Kimberly to take for a moment she turns away, blinking quickly and takes a few steps towards the entrance of the Restlands, giving herself some measure of privacy and you all a chance to meet. I'll let Kimberly decide if she joins Kendra or not.

Go ahead and make introductions here if you'd like, and let me know in OOC if you're fine being pallbearers.

Please carry on all points of OOC discussion of any significant length in this thread.

I'm looking for 5 players to join me for a Carrion Crown adventure and I'm very excited to run it for you.

Character Fluff:
I want an interesting story, feel free to lean on the Players Guide for help, and if I can tell that you care about the character then I'll be more inclined to care about him or her as well. This is a very fun, interesting AP, and I believe the quality of the characters should reflect that. It's fair to say that the level of effort you put into an interesting character, will heavily influence the level of interest/consideration I give your submissions.

Character Crunch:
1st level, 25 point buy.

Max HP, Avg starting gold for your class.

Race: All core. Feel free to submit a different race other than core, but you better have a good reason and a great story to back it up. Also it'll need to gel with the group, which is completely out of your control, so be aware of these challenges before submitting non-core requests.

Class: Core and APG*. If you want to be an archtype from other Paizo content I'm fine with those 99% of the time. *You may submit 'other' classes, but they sometimes require more time and effort on my part, and since I'm inherently lazy... they're a tougher sell. You've been warned.

Alignment: Anything that wants to rid the world of evil. Evil alignments will be a virtually impossible pitch, but I won't disallow the submission.

Traits: You will have 2 traits; 1 campaign trait from the Carrion Crown Player's Guide and the other is of your choosing. I dislike the pathfinder society specific traits for non-society adventures, so none of those please.

Of Note:
This AP has a very specific introduction, not your typical tavern meeting, and the players guide will give you the information you need to tie your character to the story. Don't bother making a submission with this 'tie-in' already in place, that submission will be discarded immediately. Again the campaign traits make this tie-in for you, feel free to elaborate or even tweak the fluff of the traits to fit your characters. I don't require you to use the campaign trait to have your character tie in, but it is easier if you do, feel free to use your own ideas for a tie in, if it makes sense and is well supported I'll allow it.

I will leave this recruitment open for 3-5 days, depending on the quantity and quality of submissions. So as early as Wednesday, or as late as Friday we could be getting started.

Good luck and I look forward to seeing what you come up with!

I have an idea to share with other future or current GMs out there.

If I run a campaign for you (could be of your choosing) would you in turn run a Skull & Shackles that I will be a character in? Id even run a s&s of my own for you, but obviously that could create some... difficulties. Not impossible difficulties, but clearly some challenges with me knowing what's in the AP. So far I've avoided reading it.

Ideally I'd run something not s&s and you would run s&s for me and whoever we get to join.

I suppose this is a GM recruitment. I like to run a fast game, and mostly stick to the script but reserve the right to pull the GM card for my or my players creativity.

Anyone interested?


Edit. I suppose I should list some of my preferences. I like faster games, like two posts a day, but I'm flexible to RL and weekends. Ummmm, and no name calling. ;-)

Welcome to the Council of Thieves - Bastards of Erebus (1 of 6)

Game Basics:

-Speaking voices should be bolded "Whoso calls out his name, Trantor!"
-Thoughts can be italicized 'What an amazing day it is outside!'

-Combat should be spoilered (see ooc thread on this)

-Extended ooc questions should take place in the Discussion thread, quick questions/comments should stay in the campaign thread.

-If you have questions let me know, if I don't know I can't help. I will certainly be asking plenty of questions myself, I'm sure.

-Above all, have fun, or else!

First of all thanks for your interest in the campaign, and congratulations!

Lets get this part out of the way so we can get started.

I'd like your characters to be fully crunched and fluffed inside the aliases. I'm giving you this time to make minor tweaks (in my mind) in order to align yours characters with the Players Guide if you haven't done so already. When you feel their ready for review then let me know and also please use this time to ask any and all questions about builds or whatever.

After my review is complete we should be ready to go in a matter of hours, not days. Lets this wagon train a'movin!

Council of Thieves - Bastards of Erebus

Character Creation Guide (General):

* I am looking for a backstory submission and an outline of the mechanics you plan on using (class/race/alignment for sure, then maybe stats, starting feats, etc). I don't expect or require a full character sheet or profile be created for this, feel free to wait till you're accepted if you'd like. I know I hate creating a fully fleshed out character only to be passed up. If you want to do a full build or profile, by all means I'm not stopping you. Although see the next point.
* I am looking for a solid backstory submission for your character. This will have more weight with me than a fully completed character sheet. Mechanics can be taught, good writing and creativity can't. Please don't take the time to build a full character sheet and then only submit 2 sentences about who they are. This game is 10% mechanics, and 90% creative fun in my opinion, so show me that creative fun. :D

Character Creation Guide (Mechanics):

* Everyone starts at 1st level. 20 point buy, Max HP, Avg starting gold for your class.
* Races: All core. Additionally I will allow 1 of the PC's to be tiefling. I am open to non-core races although keep in mind I'll want to see a strong backstory to justify the race selection. I want the majority of the party to be "core" but will consider others, keep in mind my preferences though. I tell them to you for a reason.
* Classes: Pretty much anything Paizo published including Core, and APG (and all associated Archetypes). If you have a strong desire to play something in the UM or UC, feel free to offer up the character backstory etc... but keep in mind I tell you my preferences for a reason.
* Alignment: This is a fiendish game, so choose alignment carefully. No Evil characters this time around. The Players Guide gives some good advice on this topic.
* Traits: You will have 2 traits. 1 must be a campaign trait from the Council of Thieves Player's Guide. Your traits are designed to affect your backstory, so justify your decisions in said backstory please.

General Game Guidelines:
*Read the players guide first please. It's free, it's short, and is a great resource.
*A big one is consistent constancy, and that's probably a real thing. What do I mean? I mean 2-3 posts per day. I demand this posting rate with all the rigidity of a father, husband, and full-time bread winner with two jobs, so really I'm quite understanding, but the 2-3 is what I want. Weekends it's closer to 1 or 2 a day. Please inform me of extended absences as you will get replaced if all I hear is the sound of silence.

Good luck, have fun making characters, ask away if you have questions. I anticipate this process taking several days before final decisions are announced, but I'll be here, watching and commenting with the rest of you and will keep us all updated.

Thanks to DM Jonasty for unwittingly letting me borrow from his recruitment thread format :)

A wizard is speaking Draconic as an envoy to some kobolds who're holed up in an area which other creatures can no longer access due to the presence of the Kobolds. The wizard, in his know-it-all brain, has decided the area would be better off with no kobolds. However, the Cleric standing next to him, who does not speak Draconic, is morally against killing/ousting some relatively contained kobolds who refuse to leave their chosen home. The wizard wants to use his words (which only he and the kobolds understand) to provoke the Kobolds into attacking the party, in order to look innocent in the eyes of the rest of the party and achieve the 'greater good' for the area by eliminating the Kobolds.

So my question is, can Sense Motive help a PC realize that something is wrong with what appears to be happening and what is actually happening without speaking the language? If so, to what extent does this help him? What would he know with a high vs a low roll? Would this be a Bluff vs Sense Motive check, and who would the checks be against?

I read about sense motive but my situation seems a little out of the scope of the skill. Any help is appreciated.

So I have some ideas about how to roleplay, and utilize, a bat familiar. But my GM and I don't agree 100% on what a 6 INT animal can understand and do. I'll of course defer to his decision, but I'd like some more opinions/information since we're still in the discussion phase. Eventually (at higher levels) I picture my familiar will act in as intelligent a fashion as Archemedes (Sword and the Stone) or Iago (Aladdin) with some obvious differences.

Here's what I'm thinking I should be able to do at Level 1-2:
With a 6 INT the bat could and/or should understand my characters words, as much as a troll (also 6 INT) or a less intelligent human would. The familiar could even communicate, non-verbally, with the character, with a similar amount of clarity as... Lassie. Without the humans amazing ability to understand barks of course. So pulling on the chars clothes, flapping about in an agitated fashion, screeching/squeaking with abandon. That semi-intelligence, non-verbal communication, along with Empathic Link, which only allows emotions to be communicated perfectly between Wizard and Familiar seems a large amount of potential understanding between the two.

Some things this level of understanding could accomplish (in my opinion) is basic commands, IE: Scouting, "find food, water, animals, buildings, shelter (I foresee some confusion as a bat tries to lead the Wizard to a tiny hole in the wall fit to be a shelter for a bat), various party members/people familiar should be... familiar with, danger" OR "Bring me that... tiny thing a diminutive flying creature can bring me." OR "Hide" "Come" etc... What are you thoughts here?

As levels increase and the familiar gains an intelligence score nearing and surpassing 10 INT, and the familiar gains the "Speak with Master" trait, I anticipate much more complex commands and a high level of communication between wizard and familiar. On par with conversing with a human with a similar INT score.

Once I get a handle on what the familiar can do and what it can understand, I'll be better equipped to roleplay it accordingly. Thanks!