How to deal with a contrary player?


Advice

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One more thought occurred to me to pass along. (People who know me get scared when I say "A thought occurs to me.."

First, though: I didn't intend the metagaming obsevation to be insulting. I was trying to point out that the behavior you described was forcing you to play out of character and metagame just to keep the group together. That's as frustrating for you as it is not-fun. I was trying to point out that the situation is inherently unstable; it simply couldn't go on like that. You couldn't keep sacrificing your characters roleplaying and your own fun just to keep a disfunctional character in the group. I guess I was kinda encouraging you to RP your character by sticking something pointy into the evil one and just say, "I'm roleplaying my alignment and my character just like you. How many hit points more until you die?" Sorry if it came across offensive. It wasn't intended that way.

Now for the idea:
You know a great role for attention-hogs? Dungeon Master. Tell him that it's obvious he's not happy playing in this kind of campaign, so you are all happy to let him run one that he would be happy with. Don't make it optional. Next week, he is running. I don't care if it's a dice generated dungeon and random encounter charts. Roll up an evil sorcerer and go to town. This might sound a little flippant, but, if you can pull it off, it could be just the thing to keep the group together. The DM gets all the attention. Maybe that's what he needs. He might even be good at it.


I wasn't insulted, Capt. You were 100% right in what you said. I guess I kinda knew it but wanted to believe that metagaming with the motivation of party cohesion was for the greater good. Its not though and I don't feel good doing it.

I've brought up that he should DM before. He simply is not interested in it. I don't know if I should call it selfish behavior or if he just isn't confident that he would be good with it. I know what your getting at by flipping the tables I just don't think it will happen. I don't think I can make it happen. It is a good suggestion though.


Also, for those interested, this is the character I am playing in that game. I'll likely update that thread when I level just so you all can see how the character is progressing.

Also, I just found this again. It had been lost in the doldrums of the interwebs as 3rdedition.org is a now long dead site. I found it very nostalgic though and maybe some of the Paizo people will be entertained as well.

My interview with a much younger Sean K. Reynolds.


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Hey. A little late to the thread, but I've dealt with this stuff before, so I have OPINIONS.

The "TAKE A HARD LINE WITH YOUR FRIEND" replies are stupid. Hey, look, guys who play pen and paper DND and post on the internet exhibit all of the charisma and social awareness of a damp cabbage. Shocker. All of you, stop supporting stereotypes!

----------

Fundamentally, you need to talk to this guy, out of character, and have a "let's work this out" conversation. It doesn't seem like the guy's a bad roleplayer, or a bad person, so it should be remedy-able. The topic of the conversation should be: Can we find a way for both of us to enjoy this game, so we can keep gaming?

In my experience, I have found that the conversation should touch on the following topics:

1.) What do the characters in the party _agree_ on, such that they should travel together? Frequently, I find it useful to discuss this before character creation.
2.) When is an appropriate time for him to go with the team, and when's an appropriate time for him to have his moment? Explain how it's important that everybody get to do their thing sometimes.
2a.) You should note that this advice applies to you, as well. In your example, I think you behaved sort of unwisely. Let's agree that, OOC, you were pretty sure that reviving the ratling would have wasted resources and sort of @#$%'d the party over. By _far_ your best course of action is to say "Okay! You know best!" and let the disaster occur. Then, the next couple times something similar happens, you can do stuff your way ("I don't want them to get away!"). What happened here was that you BOTH really wanted to do what your character would do, and argued about it.
3.) Try not to get into the "BUT THAT'S WHAT MY CHARACTER WOULD DO" argument. It's a pretty f$~&in' stupid argument, despite about 9 replies above implying that staying in character is the most important thing one can do at the table.
4.) Discuss a way for him to get to play his character such that it doesn't ruin other people's fun. Can he eat only, say, evil babies? This sort of goes back to Point A. If you don't have some unifying purpose as a party that all members are willing to sacrifice a bit to stick to, you're not going to get very far.

Summary: There's definitely a way to play an evil witch who loves to diplomacize enemies in a predominantly good party in the setting you have discussed. Frankly, played well it would be hilarious ("Damn it. I _know_ we have to save the world, but...babies. They're so @#$%ing delicious. I can't eat just one."). But it sounds like this dude isn't that socially aware of a player, so it might help to have a conversation to make him directly aware of the implications of what he's doing.

-Cross

Web Product Manager

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Removed some back and forth banter. Please do not provoke other posters or call them trolls.


Thank you, Chris.

Crosswind: I couldn't agree more. The problem is that we did have that discussion and the player decided to make a contrary character anyway. The DM did nothing to prevent this or enforce the parameters set forth.

But, to touch on your individual points:

1.) I was in favor of having an overarching reason our characters were bound together decided upon prior to the campaign. I am generally opposed to the concept of campaigns starting on the premise of "You all walk into a bar, s**@ hits the fan, what do you do? ...oh, guess what you are all now a considered a party, congrats." It doesn't work and often causes inter-party conflict because the characters brought to the table with that kind of loose start can be opposed to each other to very large degrees.

2.) Wait... you think that the wises course of action was to let him revive the ratling even though I believed it would go poorly? Even after the thing nearly killed one of our party members? I'm not sure I follow that logic. I'm not willing to risk life in limb on bad decisions allowed to transpire against my better judgement. If anything if my character was outvoted on that course of action it would have been better to leave rather than be included in the disaster that followed. After all, why should I care what happens to these people I'm traveling with? (you guessed it, we all met in a bar at the start of the adventure...)

3.) Not sure what your after here. Do you think it is better to purposefully not stay in character? Even if it is for the greater well being of the campaign if 3 people are forced to change their characters, play style and sacrifice the type of game they are interested in playing for the benefit of one player ... this is better?

4.) Well, I agree. Some give and take has to happen prior to the campaign. But this did happen. It was discussed what would be considered acceptable behavior for the party. This was ignored, the character was allowed and it is leading to problems again.

Also, it was decided that we weren't going to allow evil characters in the party. That was one place the line was drawn. Well, it was drawn and he was allowed to step over it.


So I wanted to share our most recent communication on this. Below is an email I received in reply to the earlier one I posted from my DM:

DM wrote:

I don't have much hope of talking Mr. R into role playing with a different style. I've tried repeatedly and I could see that Mr. R was starting to feel ganged upon last time.

The trouble is that he's right.

Good people don't kill prisoners. Good people don't use torture. Good people don't set out to steal things from peaceful creatures.

However, I don't care. I've tried to say it politely. I've tried to put it bluntly. I don't care.

Alignment in D&D is intentionally simplistic and fundamentally flawed.

Do I have to create only campaigns that completely avoid basic alignment clashes? Is that the only kind we can play? Is it the only kind we can get along in?

The rest of his email basically contained campaign stuff that amounted to saying, "...and then the apocalypse happens, you wake up in a bed elsewhere."


And this was my reply. Again, I am taking some of the advice from people here.

My reply wrote:
DM wrote:
I don't have much hope of talking Rafe into role playing with a different style. I've tried repeatedly and I could see that Rafe was starting to feel ganged upon last time.

When I ran my last game I gave some basic parameters of character creation and enforced them. We had talked about it before that game too. I was not willing to run a game with the level of inter-party conflict that we had in my last game (which ended due to inter-party conflict caused by Mr. R's character). I think, as far as this issue goes, that Mr. R's play style was FAR more tolerable last game and we didn't have any major issues there. I was really hoping that it would have turned out that way this time. I think that if Mr. R felt ganged up on last time that it was likely for good reason: people are sick of playing with enemy sympathizing evil contrary characters.

DM wrote:

The trouble is that he's right.

Good people don't kill prisoners. Good people don't use torture. Good people don't set out to steal things from peaceful creatures.

I disagree on all points. I was opposed to keeping the thing as a prisoner to begin with. It attacked my character when I was unarmed, my character retaliated with the same lethal force. I did not want to heal the thing that just tried to kill us, I didn't want to invite it to our party, I didn't want to pay it to become our leader and I didn't want to torture it. Also, we didn't torture it. It was proposed that we interrogate it but I was opposed to that. I knew it wouldn't work and was a waste of our time and even potentially dangerous. I was right. It could have got away if not for killing it when it tried to escape.

We also didn't steal anything from peaceful creatures. We were commissioned on a mission to take care of a goblin problem. We came into a camp full of goblins that attacked us on sight. We defended ourselves and yeah... we took their stuff afterwards. After they killed our leader. We found a treasure map and followed it not knowing what we may encounter along the way. The boats we encountered were obviously not the property of the beings we found inside showing clearly that if anything they were the thieves.

You are right about one thing though. I also do not care about the kind of mentality of sympathizing with every enemy we come upon. I have no desire to play in a campaign where every encounter is a moral dilemma for someone in the party which leads to conflict that has to be resolved. Neither is My Son. From what I understood prior to this campaign starting, neither are you and Mr. B. Mr. R seems to be the only one drawn to this play style and I do not understand why that should be catered to especially when it has caused such problems in the past. These problems have caused campaigns to end, people to leave games and Mr. R to get disinvited in the past. Not enforcing the parameters set forth at the start of your campaign is simply inviting this kind of conflict to happen again.

Quote:
Do I have to create only campaigns that completely avoid basic alignment clashes? Is that the only kind we can play? Is it the only kind we can get along in?

Yes, DM, I really think you do. But I think you knew this going in or you wouldn't have set the parameters that you did at the start of the campaign. I was pretty sure that you stated at that point that this was going to be a group of largely good characters. If I am not mistaken there was a "no evil" rule. I clearly remember discussing the issue of no one being allowed to create a character that is predisposed to be in conflict with another (or all of) character in the party. We specifically had talked about the sympathizing with the enemy behavior prior to the game. I know that I'm not wrong on this because My Son and My Wife both remember the same discussion and I'm sure you and Mr. B do too. It was known going in what type of behavior was not going to be considered acceptable. And to be clear I do not think this is an alignment issue, it is an issue of allowing certain character behavior/outlook despite alignment. I only really wish that you would have enforced those parameters. Instead, now you have allowed Mr. R to play an enemy sympathizing evil character who wants to EAT PEOPLE. It is part of his core character concept. This couldn't be further from what those parameters were meant to avoid happening.

After a polite discussion where you have put it bluntly what was expected during character creation you don't have to try to enforce it. There is no try. There is either enforce it or do not enforce it. In my campaign I put my foot down and explained the types of characters that I would allow in the campaign and the types that I would not. I learned by lesson from the campaign I ran prior to it. I thought we all did.

I don't like being put into the position of having to point this out because now I am the one who has to put my foot down on what I thought were rules set forth at the start of the campaign. I have tried to ask politely that the guidelines that we all agreed upon were followed. I put it bluntly that I am not interested in playing in campaign with such characters. Now I can only make my intentions clear again:

I am not willing to play in a campaign where one player is allowed to ignore the character creation parameters set forth prior to the campaign to such a completely polarizing degree. I have seen where it leads and I'm not going through it again. This issue needs to be resolved. One of the three options from my last email is going to happen because to go on and try to ignore it is to invite the kind of conflict none of us wanted to go through again. I really just do not understand why the parameters set forth prior to the campaign have not been enforced.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Ugh, I feel your pain Lune.

Well, there is the Helm of Opposite Alignment suggestion, if you wish to use it.

Hell, a fellow PC wanting to "redeem" him sounds very in line with the good alignment.


My approach to similar problems has been the following (and I admit ahead of time that it doesn't always work):

1) Does the player realize he is causing you problems?

2) If yes, you have to decide if you can live with it or have to leave. That is your call, how much of an annoyance is it.

3) If no, then you have to talk about it in as non-confrontational of a manner as possible. "Jimmy-Joe-Bob, would you mind toning back on the morality lessons and angst? I understand where you are coming from and I agree that alot of what goes on in the game is hard to justify as 'good' by modern 21st century morals. But that is the way the game is set up and we're just trying to have some fun. Some of it is ok, but getting in a philisophical debate every single combat is not fun." Something along those lines anyway.

4) This seems to head off at least a few of the problems before they start. When I GM I have started putting the following into every into.

I give a lot of leeway about character concept and build. I try to provide a reasonable number of plot hooks and motivations. But if you want to make an anti-social, anarchist, loner, hermit; then YOU the player need to find a reason that he will 'play-nice' with the rest of the team and go on the adventure.


BBT, you know I meant to bring that up in the email. That method has been used on his characters in other campaigns multiple times. He plays with one DM who does this repeatedly. This, honestly, should speak to the problem at hand.

Kydeem: Thanx for the post. Nothing new here though really, I agree with it all.


Lune wrote:


2.) Wait... you think that the wises course of action was to let him revive the ratling even though I believed it would go poorly? Even after the thing nearly killed one of our party members? I'm not sure I follow that logic. I'm not willing to risk life in limb on bad decisions allowed to transpire against my better judgement. If anything if my character was outvoted on that course of action it would have been better to leave rather than be included in the disaster that followed. After all, why should I care what happens to these people I'm traveling with? (you guessed it, we all met in a bar at the start of the adventure...)

3.) Not sure what your after here. Do you think it is better to purposefully not stay in character? Even if it is for the greater well being of the campaign if 3 people are forced to change their characters, play style and sacrifice the type of game they are interested in playing for the benefit of one player ... this is better?
...

Yeah. That would have been the wisest course of action. Consider:

1.) You let him do what he wants (against your better judgment), negative result happens. In the future, you can remind him what happened this time.

2.) You demand that you do what you want. He will never know what would have happened had he gotten his way.

---

Regarding 3, I guess my point is that roleplaying your character is secondary to working as a party. As such, it behooves everybody to consider altering their character a bit such that things work out. Or, alternatively, choose when you're going to roleplay your character thoroughly versus be a little lenient with it.

As an example, I played a Paladin in a relatively long-term campaign. One of our PCs was a wee bit evil. Liked to torture prisoners, liked to occasionally summon undead. Was a bit of a hard-ass. Had I taken a hard-line, "YOU CAN DO NONE OF THAT", he wouldn't have gotten to play his character the way he wanted. As such, through the game, we established that creating undead was out of line, though controlling existing ones was okay, and some level of roughing-up-the-prisoner (a few punches and an intimidate check) was alright, but not much more. We learned to work together, compromised a bit, and the party continued.

---

Then again, by your emails, seems like you've already sort of reached the nuclear point: Threatening to Quit.

Probably a bit late for talking things out.

-Cross


Agreed, nothing particularly new or original. Just what I've pared down to the essentials for myself. Some of the earlier posts seemed to be kinda getting lost in the forest because of the trees.

Some people know they are causing problems and either don't care or that is the part they really enjoy. Then I have to decide if I can live with it or not.
Usually I choose not. Even if that means I have no one to game with for quite a while.

Some people really don't realize they are being an ash hat. I have a couple of friends like that. They really are kinda socially deaf and never notice that they are driving others crazy if you don't actually tell them.
This type of person will usually get a bit better after a non-confrontational talk.

The last part is mostly only for the GM. But groups where a similar rule has been in place from another GM. I've seen other players bring it up when the GM was unwilling to do so. "Hey Hankly, you can't bring in an evil character, that was in the rules right at the start. Hankly you can't bring an amnimation necromancer, you agreed to the rules that noone brings in a PC that is opposed to the others and we already got an undead hunting paladin. Etc..."

From MY point of view you first have to decide if he knows he's causing a problem for you and others. It sounds like you think he does, but are you sure? Some people find this a fun sort of role playing and don't realize that it irritates others. We can't decide that for you.

If he knows he is causing a problem it is probably not fixable by you. Since he is doing it intentionally, enforcing rules or forcing build change will just bring about some other way of causing problems. So like I said, it is your decision time.

If he doesn't know it is a problem, the next step should be a conversation.


I wouldn't be surprised if this campaign folds, and quickly. It sounds like your DM doesn't want to take a stand with the player. That's too bad (but understandable...it's supposed to be for fun and taking a stand is generally not fun).

The DM needs to stand behind what he says. If he says no evil characters before character creation and that the party needs to be able to work together, then he needs to enforce it at character creation. It may be metagaming, but our group has always discussed our characters as a group prior to character creation and we don't have problems with intra-party conflict (and haven't for more than 10 years).

It sounds like you know what needs to be done. Good luck getting a good resolution that benefits the group (or if not the group, at least you and your son).


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Lune wrote:
I have asked some friends but some of them are unwilling to play with him.

'Friends' plural? So if you ditch the muppet your group expands? A win for everyone who matters..


I think everyone here is on the same page. Thank you for your comments.

InTheMouth: I think thats true. The issue here is finding people that will commit to the game if they know he isn't going to be there BEFORE disinviting him.

So even though we are all on the same page I am trying to show all sides of the disagreement as I think this would better help work towards a positive outcome. Here was my son's response:

My Son wrote:
My feelings on this is completely predicable, the setting we are in is at ''THE PRIME OF GOODNESS'' and with a brain eater that's kinda the OPPOSITE OF THE GOAL! The goal being to adventure and make profit and then go turn into a apocalyptic world, I think if Mr R would try to befriend a enemy then hes a enemy to me so he would be with those who could be evil and on the side of those who started the apocalypse.

From speaking with him his basic opinion is that he wants to be in a campaign where he kills bad guys and takes their stuff. If someone in the party is sympathetic to the enemy frequently then he would consider them a bad guy ...and likely kill them and take their stuff. I love my son. ;)

And this is what Mr. B had to say and his opinion likely matters a lot here as he is really the most neutral. He is pretty easy going but then again he typically doesn't have a problem with anything to the point of saying anything about it. I mean, I like Mr. B a lot but I'm not sure if I have ever seen him take a stand on an issue.

Mr B wrote:

Ow! Plot Tornadoed!

Alignment has always been an issue with D&D. Ultimately, it's a very rough guide to a character's personality and there are different interpretations and styles that work with each of the alignments. This is why Larry got rid of alignment long ago. What alignment is Dirty Harry?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-GvNc24yQZA

You could argue that he's lawful, because he's a cop and he takes that responsibility seriously. You could argue that he's chaotic, because he's often breaking the rules and going against his superiors. You can argue that he's good, since he's trying to protect innocent people and bring justice, but then, he's torturing the hell out of that guy. He would be good-aligned in terms of D&D, since he's always fighting against murderers and terrorists and other bad guys. His alignment doesn't matter; it's the character and personality that's important.

I agree that most encounters should simply be stuff to kill and loot, if only for the sake of keeping the green bean moving, but occasional goofiness is fine. The first couple of sessions were of the "kill 'n loot" type, so that worked out fine. I really didn't have any problems with Mr. R's actions during the rat-thing encounter. Each round during the actual fight, he was actively attacking or moving into position to attack the thing. Afterwards, he wanted to question it about the map. He had no intention of giving the thing it's loot back or setting it free without the party's consent: he called for a vote on what to do with it. He also didn't use any resources or healing that could be used on others on it. I get the feeling that the main reason Gugu was nice to the thing is because it was a rat; perhaps Mr D should be wary about using rats as foes in the future.

In general, I don't prefer games where the party works as a single-minded, cohesive unit all of the time, like the Justice League or Captain Planet or GI Joe. During combat, the party absolutely needs to work together, particularly with Pathfinder where the encounters are set up to be a certain difficulty and inter-party chaos can lead to deaths 'n grimness. Out of combat, there can be disagreements, though I also don't prefer games with lots of inter-party conflict and backstabbing, like Farscape or Red Dwarf or any of the Survivor-esce reality shows. I prefer games where the party has a common goal, and while disagreements may arise, doesn't let those disagreements get in the way of accomplishing the goal, like Firefly, or Star Trek, or the Smurfs, or the A*Team.

Yep, I like A*Team-style games. I call Murdock.

I think it boils down to being able to deal with different personalities and being able to compromise in character. I specifically made my character a neutral girl who hasn't put much thought into matters of morality and philosophy. In fact, she committed pseudo-murder a year or two prior, so she's not "leaning towards good" or anything currently. I fully expect to have her alignment change at some point during the campaign based on events and happenings. If she saw Gugu stuff a slain bandit into a pot and start cooking it up, she'd say, "Ew, gross", realize that Gugu was clearly from some uncivilized, back-woods culture and not think much more of it that that. If Gugu was trying to actively kill somebody for the purpose of food, then Ahna would have a problem with it and step in, particularly if the person was innocent or an ally. We need characters that can simply deal with eachother and work towards some common goal; characters that have "absolutes" in their personalities work against this, as do characters that are willing to commit violence against party members over protecting/harming/whatever npcs or other trivial matters.


And... why is my avatar in the last post Smurfette?


Lune wrote:
And... why is my avatar in the last post Smurfette?

If the word "smurf" is anywhere in your post it changes your avatar.

You did say ", or the Smurfs, or the A*Team." :)


Smurfin A! I didn't even let that "smurf" exit my own mouth. That was some other smurf's words I quoted.


I think there's a difference between "The party doesn't have a single hive-mind of constant agreement" and "One member of the party is evil, is conceptually based entirely around cooking and eating people, and tries to bribe random monsters to be the party leader". And I think it's irresponsible to pretend otherwise.


Just kill his character, and his next character, and so on. *Smurfs*


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Lune wrote:
Smurfin A! I didn't even let that "smurf" exit my own mouth. That was some other smurf's words I quoted.

just curious you anywhere near kalamazoo/ portage, cause i could use a group right now.

Lantern Lodge

hm well if you all do decide to kick him you do not need a new player. A 3 man cell is, in my opinion, great as long as the group composition is on key. Also in concerns of DMing such a group is easy as far as combat goes. What I do with the group I DM which as well only consist of 3 people excluding my self is create encounters based off averages. Ex: group ac consist of fighter with 23 ac, rogue with 19 ac, and a ranger with 20 ac. (23+19+20) device by 3 (the number of players) = the hit range you should set up to challenge the party. Same goes in figuring enemy ac except you use the the average to hit of party. Also do not include temporary modifiers when doing such like combat expertise or power attack otherwise the other players would be at a disadvantage. Using this method has kept a lot of encounters I have composed challenging but not overwhelming or to easy.


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Sounds like this person might make a better DM then a Player. If nothing else you could pull the same crap in his game and he might learn something then.

In-game solutions:
Helm of Opposite Alignment, Geas/Quest or other Curse might help for awhile.

OOG Solution:
Don't invite him anymore. We have a guy like this but we have a fairly large pool of players to choose from.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Pathfinder is a group game, and only works, when everyone work to contribute to the fun.

That is the absolute main goal, for everyone to have fun, even the DM.

Sometimes, people need to be reminded of this.

His fun should not be at the expense of yours, or anyone else's.


you hit the nail on the head - talking about it maturely and openly is the best prospect. It can be awkward at first but practice will make perfect.


Lune wrote:

First of all I want to point out that I am a fellow player in this campaign rather than the DM. The DM does recognize the issue with this player though.

To give you some background I will tell you that everyone in my gaming group are real life friends and my 10yr old son is among them. The problem player that I am mentioning here has been an issue for a long time with our group for the same reason.

The problem? He is contrary. I understand that needs more elaboration. I'll try and I can also give some examples. He tends to make characters that are not strictly an antithesis to an existing character but basically is the opposed to the rest of the party in some way. He likes to compare his character to being the Wolverine of the X-Men which makes it sound a lot better than it is.

So some examples of his behavior. Well, the biggest issue seems to be that he tries to be diplomatic with our enemies far too often and at inappropriate times (like in the middle of battle). He always wants to look at things through the enemy's eyes and see it from their perspective. He is a sympathizer. After all, how dare we invade the goblin's homes? They have a right to protect their homes just like humans do. In fact, aren't we the evil ones for invading their homeland and slaying them simply for not just handing over their treasure?

And what makes this all so unbelievable? He tends to play evil aligned female characters that tend to focus on charm and compulsion type spells. Evil doesn't strike me as a sympathizer for anyone and charm type characters don't seem like they would care what anyone would think of the morality of their actions - they can just make them think what they want them to. Just pawns in their big game and all that jazz, you know?

So some specific things he has done. Hm, well he played a Paladin of an evil bat goddess in a World's Largest Dungeon game that was really just self interested. That isn't very conducive to the style of play that is required for that campaign.

...

He is playing evil female enchanters, sympathetic to the poor blighted people you are fighting? Who are only evil because we cannot sit down and talk. Is he playing some type of anti-adventurer feminist? It feels very left to me, indulging in the idea of treason and changing sides, but always a manipulator archetype. No you are the villains, these people are just misunderstood.


Lune wrote:

First of all I want to point out that I am a fellow player in this campaign rather than the DM. The DM does recognize the issue with this player though.

To give you some background I will tell you that everyone in my gaming group are real life friends and my 10yr old son is among them. The problem player that I am mentioning here has been an issue for a long time with our group for the same reason.

The problem? He is contrary. I understand that needs more elaboration. I'll try and I can also give some examples. He tends to make characters that are not strictly an antithesis to an existing character but basically is the opposed to the rest of the party in some way. He likes to compare his character to being the Wolverine of the X-Men which makes it sound a lot better than it is.

So some examples of his behavior. Well, the biggest issue seems to be that he tries to be diplomatic with our enemies far too often and at inappropriate times (like in the middle of battle). He always wants to look at things through the enemy's eyes and see it from their perspective. He is a sympathizer. After all, how dare we invade the goblin's homes? They have a right to protect their homes just like humans do. In fact, aren't we the evil ones for invading their homeland and slaying them simply for not just handing over their treasure?

And what makes this all so unbelievable? He tends to play evil aligned female characters that tend to focus on charm and compulsion type spells. Evil doesn't strike me as a sympathizer for anyone and charm type characters don't seem like they would care what anyone would think of the morality of their actions - they can just make them think what they want them to. Just pawns in their big game and all that jazz, you know?

So some specific things he has done. Hm, well he played a Paladin of an evil bat goddess in a World's Largest Dungeon game that was really just self interested. That isn't very conducive to the style of play that is required for that campaign.

...

What should you do? Rp the treason out in game, and then kill them if they force your hand. Beef your will save prior to the confrontation.


Checking this smurf business. Is it so easy to be a smurf?


Yes, you just say "Smurf!"


Fantastic smurfs. I've had some problems with contrary players actually, and it hasn't always worked out. I've found if they want to argue without compromise, it is best to let them go.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Companion Subscriber

Add some bestiality and tentacles, and this board is the Avatar movie.


Blackbloodtroll: Literally LOL.

If Mr R wants evil game. Mr B is morally "neutral" - which is game code for "evil but I don't want to admit it". And DM is OK with evil actions. Why not just play an evil campaign? Change characters, or atleast change your chars alignment, and become the guys who bring about the apocalypse. Work for the "freedom fighter" monsters to awaken the great old one, call down the starstone, or whatever the baddy's goal is. Then just make sure this party dies in the devastation it causes. You can do that: your character is both evil and crazy. That's the game they wanted, right?

I know you are worried about playing an evil game with your son, but he is going to be exposed to that in high school games, or maybe colege. It's best to prepare him in a game with his father where you can explain and talk about the ramifications afterward.


Capt_Phoenix wrote:

If Mr R wants evil game. Mr B is morally "neutral" - which is game code for "evil but I don't want to admit it". And DM is OK with evil actions. Why not just play an evil campaign? Change characters, or atleast change your chars alignment, and become the guys who bring about the apocalypse. Work for the "freedom fighter" monsters to awaken the great old one, call down the starstone, or whatever the baddy's goal is. Then just make sure this party dies in the devastation it causes. You can do that: your character is both evil and crazy. That's the game they wanted, right?

I know you are worried about playing an evil game with your son, but he is going to be exposed to that in high school games, or maybe colege. It's best to prepare him in a game with his father where you can explain and talk about the ramifications afterward.

Better idea: don't reverse the entire campaign because one jerk who is always a jerk is once again being a jerk.

There are few things you could possibly do that are worse than letting this guy just walk all over you and take over the entire game with his stupid self-involved shenanigans. Caving in to his attention-seeking tomfoolery is clearly not the answer.

I also love the automatic assumption that everyone who isn't Shining-Paladin-Good is just Evil-in-denial. Looks like the OP isn't the only one who needs to find better players.


You know there is an easy way to fix this.

Install two house rules (and stick to them):

1- No inter party conflict allowed. Any instance of acting against the party renders the offending PC into an NPC instantly. This has to be ACTUAL instances of conflict not merely verbal lamentations of how wrong the party is. Good examples would be stealing from party members, attacking party members, or voluntarily failing saves from enemies. The player must roll up a new PC. [this needs GM approval]

2- Player VETO. When a PC is going to be joining the party the other players get to know ahead of time the specifics of your character sheet (including the personality you intend to use/ although the background can remain hidden if the GM allows it). They can then vote on allowing this PC to join the party. Majority rules. If voted out the offending player will need to make a new character. [this needs GM approval... but the players don't need GM approval to do this In Character in the game.] [For example if a party member is unacceptable for whatever reason (evil witch in an all good group) The other characters are well within their role play rights to no longer associate with the evil person once they learn in game about the character's evil.]


And because I am curious... forgive me.

smurf


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Capt_Phoenix wrote:
If Mr R wants evil game. Mr B is morally "neutral" - which is game code for "evil but I don't want to admit it". And DM is OK with evil actions. Why not just play an evil campaign?

Because the contrary player will decide to play a paladin if you do.


Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Dabbler wrote:
Capt_Phoenix wrote:
If Mr R wants evil game. Mr B is morally "neutral" - which is game code for "evil but I don't want to admit it". And DM is OK with evil actions. Why not just play an evil campaign?
Because the contrary player will decide to play a paladin if you do.

Unfortunately: very true. Since, and let us be CLEAR about it, the contrariness basically is his personal way of getting attention and interacting in the campaign. According to Lune, repeatedly, in different campaigns. He does not care to respect the pre-agreed general story or the rulings made by the DM.

Which makes it his "modus operandi" of roleplaying and him probably unfitting for many camapigns, whatever his roleplaying advantages maybe.

And he expects to get away with it, at everyone's cost ?

Roleplaying is about having fun (together, and including the DM), not each single one on his own, and since his personal kicks do not really fit-in with the group, one of the participants will likely have to leave the table.

This is notabout fairness or one-sided civilized restraint. It's a matter of adaptability, and obviously Mr.R seems incabable of tolerating other players' POV or joy at the game.

Who really wants an egotistic specimen like this at one's gaming table ?

All of this being said, just once more regarding alignment : Please, never go and apply 21st century dynamics (or 19th century, or 20th century...) of "good" and "evil" to a medieval/classic age game or even to any cultural environment (historical or regional )except your own. And even your neighbour will likely disagree.

Just go, ask the Chelians^^


Aranna wrote:

You know there is an easy way to fix this.

Install two house rules (and stick to them):

1- No inter party conflict allowed. Any instance of acting against the party renders the offending PC into an NPC instantly. This has to be ACTUAL instances of conflict not merely verbal lamentations of how wrong the party is. Good examples would be stealing from party members, attacking party members, or voluntarily failing saves from enemies. The player must roll up a new PC. [this needs GM approval]

2- Player VETO. When a PC is going to be joining the party the other players get to know ahead of time the specifics of your character sheet (including the personality you intend to use/ although the background can remain hidden if the GM allows it). They can then vote on allowing this PC to join the party. Majority rules. If voted out the offending player will need to make a new character. [this needs GM approval... but the players don't need GM approval to do this In Character in the game.] [For example if a party member is unacceptable for whatever reason (evil witch in an all good group) The other characters are well within their role play rights to no longer associate with the evil person once they learn in game about the character's evil.]

Seen a dm try rule no 1, it really caused problems. Whereas conflict might run its course and lead to an eventual solution (a -10 solution) or bonds being strengthened after a bit of conflict, by stopping any party conflict spilling too far, it became a courtier game of who can chat up the dm the most. If something goes to a duel, let it go, if a char is a liability, the party can let them go and the player chooses to make a new one or leave.

Char conflict also really makes sense with some chars, and those they can easily squabble against. As an example, an honour bound cavalier is probably going to duel a spellcaster that keeps hitting them with spells and doesn't show any concern for their space, what they are doing in combat or their well being. Yes, I was playing the cavalier that settled this dispute with a mace and a few rounds.

The player that lost the duel (his char lived), tried to get your rule no 1 instated. It was passed, and then the spellcaster kept doing their old tricks, but was now protected by rule no 1. Rules of conduct can really take away from the game.

2 is likewise awful. Why should the party know all there is to know about new characters? Where is the sense of discovery or privacy? The dm gets to know all the details, why should the pcs? There is no total and all stats adventurer job application the pcs get from new pcs wanting to join.

Keeping out undesirable players can be easily done in game via rp. If someone wants to join and they seem dodgy, or prove themselves to be dodgy, the chars just discuss it and leave the offender behind. Kill and loot the nutter if they have to. No need for rules, allow discussion. Everyone is a thinking adult, and an awful char can be jettisoned from the larger party. Allow the players to have power, direction and agency, including the right to decide, not taking on this problematic ally thanks.

Best example of this, was a spellcaster in a melee party. Over multiple chars, it didn't work out for the spellcaster. Died, tried to kill the party multiple times with new chars, kept being defeated. Eventually the party said, "we are not taking on any new spellcasters". Done. Problem solved, no more arrogant elven wizards.

Liberty's Edge

Toxic friend.

I would not consider him a friend - because he is not.

Remove him from the group.

Otherwise, enjoy all the stress that person will cause by enabling him.

qq


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Aranna wrote:

You know there is an easy way to fix this.

Install two house rules (and stick to them):

...things things things things things...

3.5 Loyalist pretty much hit the nail on the head about why this is a bad idea. I can't see it solving problems, in fact, given the fact that the GM doesn't seem to be willing to take a hard stance on things most of the time, I can't see it doing anything except causing way more problems.

The biggest issue I'm seeing here is that Lune keeps saying this guy is an excellent roleplayer, except for this one huge and omnipresent issue.

In what sense, then, is he an excellent roleplayer? If you have a panini press that makes excellent paninis but gives you second-degree burns every time you use it, can it really be called a good panini press?


FinalParagon wrote:
The biggest issue I'm seeing here is that Lune keeps saying this guy is an excellent roleplayer, except for this one huge and omnipresent issue.

That's like saying: "He's an excellent striker, but he only scores own-goals."

This player's ability to RP an unrealistic douche is not in question. A good role-player can RP anything, can this player do that? If he can only RP one kind of character, he's not a good RPer no matter how brilliantly he plays that one type of character.


3.5 Loyalist... your point on house rule #1 is false. If a caster deliberately (not accidentally) targeted your fighter without your permission in an AoE spell then they violated the rule and they just lost their character and need to make a new one. They certainly aren't protected by such a rule, quite the opposite.

And by accidental I mean for one example a delayed blast spell is targeted to an area that no allies are standing in, yet the fighters still charge in knowing full well the blast is coming.

As for house rule 2. They NEED to fix trust issues. The only way to do that is to have everyone play openly and honestly with no secrets. To use FinalParagon's panini press example, would you keep buying panini presses from the same manufacturer even though they have been causing you burns? No you would try out the new model first so that you can return it if it's faulty. Would you trust that manufacturer when they keep the test data secret?

Besides it sounds like 3.5 Loyalist supports the last part of house rule 2 anyway, so why not go all the way and skip all the drama that ostracizing the character in game will cause and simply play openly till the offender has changed his ways.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Basically there is not much to be said anymore :

If you can't stand to play alongside anymore, quit the campaign (or suspend playing) and explain, short, but concisely, why you take a leave..

Since by your own description, this will basically put the campaign on the rocks, this might finally convince your GM and Mr B to take sides as how to resolve the situation, instead of sitting out the crisis, hoping for a miracle to happen.

In the best case, Mr R cleans up his act.

Normally, this would put the gun onto the GM to keep the campaign afloat and either let Mr R go, or replace him with another player.

In the worst case, you are rid of a campaign which was joyless and frustrating for you and your son.

Overall : I like my friends. But not all of my friends are good soccer/basketball/hockey players and therefore I wouldn't want them on my team for that, because the'd affect everyone else, negatively. That does, or perhaps should, not affect the friendship, even if rejection smarts. The question is, will Mr R be up to face the sad truth but stay a friend ?


FinalParagon wrote:
Aranna wrote:

You know there is an easy way to fix this.

Install two house rules (and stick to them):

...things things things things things...

3.5 Loyalist pretty much hit the nail on the head about why this is a bad idea. I can't see it solving problems, in fact, given the fact that the GM doesn't seem to be willing to take a hard stance on things most of the time, I can't see it doing anything except causing way more problems.

The biggest issue I'm seeing here is that Lune keeps saying this guy is an excellent roleplayer, except for this one huge and omnipresent issue.

In what sense, then, is he an excellent roleplayer? If you have a panini press that makes excellent paninis but gives you second-degree burns every time you use it, can it really be called a good panini press?

Roleplaying is freedom, it can be, or this freedom can be taken away. Dm rules that say, no matter what the players want or think is right you will never do such and such, because the dm made a rule about it are truly annoying. They drag you straight out of the game. Imagine a dm insisted pcs can never break laws, but you are playing a rogue and in down time or just heading through a town, you want to pick some pockets. Dm informs, no, that would break the law, you should respect it. Well dm, my character is a thief.

The dms get enough power without heavily artificial rules of what characters can do on top. Sometimes the duel or the expulsion of a pc has to happen, and should be allowed to happen. It can work with the story, backgrounds, characters. I'm not for daily pvp though.


Aranna wrote:

3.5 Loyalist... your point on house rule #1 is false. If a caster deliberately (not accidentally) targeted your fighter without your permission in an AoE spell then they violated the rule and they just lost their character and need to make a new one. They certainly aren't protected by such a rule, quite the opposite.

And by accidental I mean for one example a delayed blast spell is targeted to an area that no allies are standing in, yet the fighters still charge in knowing full well the blast is coming.

As for house rule 2. They NEED to fix trust issues. The only way to do that is to have everyone play openly and honestly with no secrets. To use FinalParagon's panini press example, would you keep buying panini presses from the same manufacturer even though they have been causing you burns? No you would try out the new model first so that you can return it if it's faulty. Would you trust that manufacturer when they keep the test data secret?

Besides it sounds like 3.5 Loyalist supports the last part of house rule 2 anyway, so why not go all the way and skip all the drama that ostracizing the character in game will cause and simply play openly till the offender has changed his ways.

Spells are tricky things, they can adhere to the technical letter of the new laws, you shall not harm other players, but fill an area around you with spell effects, preventing your char from doing what they wanted and enter combat. E.g you can't move off this stairway and into combat, because you will enter a spell area which will really screw you up armoured guy. Now my char would say "stop that right now caster, or we will go for round two", but with party conflict not allowed I can't make challenges, or shoot him, that would put me as the bad guy. I said look, I can't move anywhere, I've been hemmed in with spells but not damaged. Dm said it was fine because no damage or negative effects were inflicted. Caster got to waste my rounds.

I support players solving problems, and the dm being the world outside of their behaviour, in no way limiting what they choose to do.

On secrets, people have secrets, so I am entirely fine with fantasy characters having secrets and not divulging all of who they are to the party. The mechanics behind their characters would be impossible for anyone they encountered to know absolutely so the sharing them is even meta-gaming, "what is your dex". Introvert here, so I am a bit biased.


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toastwolf: Lansing, actually.

BBT: Smurfs + Bestiality tentacle hentai = Avatar! lol

Capt_Phoenix: We (my son and I) are not opposed to an evil campaign. We even talked about it prior to the start of this campaign mostly as a way of not having to deal with this particular issue. It was brought up that Mr. R has in the past made a contrary character in an evil campaign as well; he was the do gooder. Basically, that solution will not work as a means of dealing with the issue. Plus, the DM isn't really interested in running an evil campaign due to party goals being hard to DM for.

Aranna: I approve of your rules and would like to get them implemented. Now I just have to convince my DM to implement them and stick to them. I understand 3.5 Loyalist's issues with them and they are sound as well. The problem is I think there needs to be a change in the way things are currently done and I do not see a middle ground.

FinalParagon: To answer your question he is a good roleplayer and fun to game with in every other sense except this one problem. In the analogy you used it would be like just needing to find a way to put a guard on the handle of the panini press so you do not get burned. I think this is resolvable but it is either going to take doing it by force or giving the player an ultimatum. The problem is that I do not have the power to apply said force (though I could leave the table) and I do not have the power to give that ultimatum.


Lune wrote:
I do not have the power to give that ultimatum.

You and your son are two of the group's players. You've also said that you can't easily just chuck Mr. R out because losing even one player could put an end to the game.

Seems to me that you do indeed have the power to give that ultimatum if you so desire.

Now, whether you want to give that ultimatum may be a different question. But it's definitely an option, and not one to be discarded out of hand.

Liberty's Edge

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IF ONE MEMBER OF THE GROUP CONSISTENTLY MESSES UP THE REST OF THE GROUP, IT'S EITHER TIME FOR THE GROUP TO KICK HIM OUT OR FOR YOU TO LEAVE AND FIND ANOTHER GROUP. Why put up with this mess unless you're a masochist? Good luck.

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