It's probably too late for this now, but one interesting way I've seen to show that a bad guy is super-tough is to let the players play the roles of the NPCs who get massacred. That way, it's still in-game information but they can really see for themselves how damage and spells just bounce off the enemy without having to suffer through a PC TPK.
I have fond memories of the DC 15 to jump a 10' pit argument.
I keep flipping back and forth in my mind between "that's dumb" and "that makes sense".
On a similar note, I remember someone arguing that a druid wild shaped into a Large manta ray:
(1) should be able to swim through 2' deep water because manta rays are flat, and
(2) should also be able to bite a creature flying 10' off the ground because a Large creature occupies a 10' x 10' x 10' cube.
Yea, very important for Runelords (don't have enough experience with them to speak to other AP's) - if your players are not heroic you're going to have problems. By heroic, I mean the pc's should react to Bad Things Happening to Good People with a desire to directly intervene without a lot of other (financial) motivation.
It's not necessarily just compensation. In some modules I ask myself "Why are random passersby supposed to solve this problem instead of the local town watch/feudal lord/other people who have a much higher investment in helping out the locals?"
For instance, in the Age of Worms adventure Three Faces of Evil, there's an evil cult beneath the town of Diamond Lake...and nobody cares except the heroes? Umm...okay?
I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream
The GM has fond memories of fights where the heroes just barely escape total destruction and defeat the bad guys at the last second, so he makes every fight end up that way! The campaign is a non-stop grind of fighting incredibly difficult enemies who turn into creampuffs once the party is about to have a TPK. Or maybe it's a powerful NPC who swoops in just before the TPK in order to save the day. It doesn't matter -- the near-TPK is the "fun" part!
(Bonus points if the PCs can't even try to get themselves killed successfully.)
DM Under The Bridge wrote:
I enjoyed watching TV back when my family only had two channels, but that doesn't mean that I want to go back to that situation.
Likewise, I have no desire to go back to 1E AD&D from 3E/Pathfinder.
On early entry, before the old FAQ did you see anyone use prestige classes? If so, I can see how you might think of it as a loophole. If not, did you think making them more viable brought more interest in playing them?
An elegant solution to a crappy Mystic Theurge class would be to either (a) fix the Mystic Theurge class or (b) create a new class that blends the divine and arcane spells lists (like the Witch).
An inelegant solution would be to take an existing rule and say "if you squint hard and put common sense aside, then you can finesse the existing rules into allowing early entry".
I'm glad the inelegant solution is gone.
#4 Players sometimes forget that running away is an option
#4.5 GMs sometimes forget that the players don't always have all the facts.
For instance, it might be obvious to the GM that a monster is too tough to fight, but often the players don't find out how tough an opponent is until it's too late to run (e.g. one or more party members are already knocked unconscious).
#13 A well-prepared, or clever, group can beat challenges that far exceed their APL. This is a good thing.
13(a): Even if the players enjoy facing very difficult challenges 10% of the time, it does not necessarily follow that they will have 10 times the enjoyment facing very difficult challenges 100% of the time!
@sunshadow: I think there's a feedback between the actual characters people play and the rules.
At the very least, I find there's a feedback between having a map and making interesting moves.
In a game with a map, I'm more likely to say "I take THIS ROUTE to go to THIS PLACE and attack THIS ENEMY". In a game without a map, I'm much more likely to say "I attack whichever enemy is close to me and injured" (which I could probably keep repeating mindlessly until the fight is over while surfing the internet on my smartphone, if I had a smartphone).
Exactly. In my experience, "playing without a map" is really "playing with a map that only exists in the GM's head and the players have to guess what it looks like". Sometimes it works fine, other times it's confusing.
For myself, I at least like to have a quick sketch of what the battlefield looks like. Tokens are definitely optional, though.
-Age of Worms (played up to level 17 so far; most adventures were pretty good; the idea of killing a god is awesome)
Ones I liked, but didn't love:
-Rise of the Runelords (played up to level 6; the adventures were pretty good but not as tightly connected as I like)
My least favourites:
-Council of Thieves (played on and off until level 5; the idea of a rebellion in a city is cool, but the execution was clunky IMO)
My least favourite spell is probably Clairaudience/Clairvoyance. The problem is that it takes 10 minutes to cast, but the range is only a few hundred feet and the duration is only a few minutes.
If the casting time were 1 round it would be okay, but the casting time really ruins it as a reconnaissance tool.
For Pathfinder Society, I kind of get stuck in a loop:
(1) I enjoy playing a new character.
I have mixed feelings about it. The atmosphere was too modern for me in parts (trains don't belong in my D&D) and I was indifferent to the world war setup.
But there were many parts I thought were brilliant:
I was leafing through a copy of the North York Post yesterday (a free community newspaper) and there was an article about board game cafes in Toronto ("Snakes & Lattes" and "For The Win Cafe").
They asked the cafe owners "What is your all-time favourite board game?" and Pat Chung of For The Win Cafe answered:
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game. It's a dungeon-crawling role-playing game.
So you have at least one fan out there who's spreading the word!
Well put. In general, I think that players are entitled to one important thing -- they're entitled to be on the same page in terms of the GM's vision of the campaign so that they can intelligently choose whether to join the game or not.
I don't believe a GM should have the right to waste some of my limited free time by misleading me into starting a campaign I should have known in advance that I wouldn't enjoy.
I give them credit for trying something other than "find a captive market of a few thousand people, churn out a long series of splatbooks until your sales start to flag, then reboot and start over again with a new edition".
Of course, they could just stop printing splatbooks and start laying off employees; that's another option.
I thought it was interesting that Drogon, a real-life shopkeeper, seems to have a soft spot for people who steal from shopkeepers. ;-)
So, to quit my rambling, is asking players to "colour inside the line" GM hubris, or a reasonable request? and corollary is it ever okay for a GM, or a gaming group by mutual accent to install an electric fence on a few of those lines to enforce compliance? And how can it be done without hard feelings.
I think it's good to get all the players and the GM on the same page when it comes to the tone of the campaign, and this seems to be the purpose of that.
In the past when I've run adventure paths, I usually prefaced it with a comment like: "This is an adventure path, so it runs primarily in one direction. So it's up to you folks to create characters who want to move in that one direction as a cooperating party, and I'll work with you to make that as smooth as possible. If you think that's too restrictive, then this may not be the right game for you."
Instead, how about you take the problem player aside and explain to him that it is bad gaming sportsmanship to overpower encounters to the point that other players do not feel they are having fun.
I highly recommend that the other players should talk to Player A, not the GM. Why? Because the other players are much better judges over whether they're actually having fun or not than the GM is!
If you're unhappy when Player A pulls his grappling trick against lone casters, let someone else GM the scenarios which feature lone casters.
If other players are unhappy when Player A pulls his trick, they should tell him so.
If nobody is unhappy when Player A pulls his trick (which is quite possibly the case), nothing needs to be done.
Lord Foul II wrote:
then why is making undead evil in a way that leaves: craft construct, inflict spells, and raise dead NOT evil?
(a) Because desecrating the dead is icky.(b) Because you're messing with someone's soul against their will (e.g. an undead creature can't be brought back to life with Raise Dead, so there must be some kind of soul shenanigans going on).
I'm just glad you didn't ask "why are vibrators legal, but necrophilia isn't?"
Adamantine Dragon wrote:
Was my role playing too much?
Not at all, since you politely put it in an email so you wouldn't be monopolizing game time. And there was nothing wrong with the other players' reactions either; they're not morally obligated to be interested in the stuff that you find interesting about the game.
Good news! Even if faction missions are going away, we can still use those valuable techniques with the main or secondary scenario mission. ;-)
TL;DR: Depending on the organization of the dungeon and the relationships between the different factions resting in the dungeon can be easy or not.
Again, it's obviously campaign dependent, but that's usually the kind of information that's obvious to the GM, but not necessarily obvious to the PCs (at least at first) unless the GM is having pity on them.
Now I can certainly believe that there are some parties out there who do all kinds of scouting and picking up rumours and who know everything about the lay of the land before they even start their dungeon delving, but that never came up in any of my campaigns. If we ever slept a dungeon, we just hoped that the GM would take it easy on us.
Philip Dhollander wrote:
In our case, it was about the game and the fact that it was too much (two days basically), the fact that she did not have a real hobby and was stuck at home and the fact that she finds it a 'silly hobby'.
That's basically my wife's attitude: why should I want to waste so much time out of the house when I could be at home, entertaining her? We've settled on one night every two weeks being a happy medium, however. (Although there was that one time when she was griping that my one game every two weeks was interfering with her going to the gym every night! Gimme a break...)
But it's a waste of time! You could be mowing the lawn or fix the door to the basement instead. You know, be a real man rather than playing some stupid game once every few weeks.
Ha! My wife occasionally comments: "Why don't you get a hobby that MAKES money? Like, instead of playing games, you could write games!"
And yet she never finds it funny when I suggest: "Why don't you learn to make shoes instead of going shopping for shoes?" Odd how that works...
;-) (If you're reading this, I love you, honey!)
I'm going to run a Pathfinder adventure path very soon (Reign of Winter) for these same people, ie players that prefer detail-oriented, "realistic" kinds of games. I'm fairly well read on the rules but I certainly don't have them mastered, so I want to ask you folks: can Pathfinder handle games that aren't very mechanically crunchy?
I think I'm missing something here. It almost sounds like your players like a mechanically crunchy game, so you're trying to trick them into a game that's not mechanically crunchy.