When discussing player entitlement why do players get the short end of the stick?


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
shallowsoul wrote:

But you don't always have to ask why either. Always asking why can be just as rude as sayingno all the time. If a DM has made his decision then aasking why is pointless but I know why you are asking because you want the DM to you an answer that you can argue and hopefully get him to change is mind.

This doesn't work in my games because my reasons, no matter what they are, are always justified in my eyes, seeing as I'm the one building the world anyway.

Now you are always more than welcome to politely decline my game and play another.

I'm on board with the GM setting the ground rules, but as far as I'm concerned it is never rude for a player to ask why. And the GM should always provide an answer. That answer could be "There are secrets involved in the campaign that address that and I don't want to spoil them now" (which would have been my answer for a player wanting to play a psionic in my Greyhawk campaign) but there should always be an answer. Anything less and that's disrespecting your players.


Bill Dunn wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:

But you don't always have to ask why either. Always asking why can be just as rude as sayingno all the time. If a DM has made his decision then aasking why is pointless but I know why you are asking because you want the DM to you an answer that you can argue and hopefully get him to change is mind.

This doesn't work in my games because my reasons, no matter what they are, are always justified in my eyes, seeing as I'm the one building the world anyway.

Now you are always more than welcome to politely decline my game and play another.

I'm on board with the GM setting the ground rules, but as far as I'm concerned it is never rude for a player to ask why. And the GM should always provide an answer. That answer could be "There are secrets involved in the campaign that address that and I don't want to spoil them now" (which would have been my answer for a player wanting to play a psionic in my Greyhawk campaign) but there should always be an answer. Anything less and that's disrespecting your players.

That was my reaction also.


shallowsoul wrote:
John Kretzer wrote:

I'll addmit I have not read this entire thread...I usualy do but it is late at night and I need to go to work tomorrow. But I wanted to comment on this subject. I am sorry if I am repeating somebody...or I am completely off topic to what this thread is now...

Anyway the problem with GM and 'player entitlement' or the other side of the coin 'Dictator GMship' is something I see all the time. It is usualy due to prior abuse. A player that is told 'No' to something probably had a GM who in the past was very abitary in these descsion. Likewise when some GMs say 'No' to something...it was probably because a past player has done something that broke their game.

My current GM has this problem. When I first joined his game I said to him I would like to try x. He said 'No'. Now being new to gaming outside of a bunch of solo games my brother ran for me I never dealt with this before....so I asked him 'Why?'. Politely. Than he went into a long speech about how a past player used x, and a whole list of other things to break his game. It was not a hostile conversation... mostly because I am polite.

But as time passed and I have played under him and read threads on gaming message boards and such I came to realize that both GMs and players always assume the worst especialy in a new player or GM. Which continues to perpetuate this conflict.

So I have come up with these rules in dealing with players and GMs.

As a player..

1) When denied something ask politely 'Why?' Don't assume anything about the GM's motive about the denial. And explain that you just want to know the reason...not to neccessary to argue it.

2) When you get your answear as to why....tell the GM your concept and ask "How can I get to x in ways you would be comfortable with?". It is always better to ask for help than go on attack mode.

3) If it turns out your GM was abused by a past player gently keep pointing out that you(and if you know) the other players are NOT that player.

As a...

But you don't always have to ask why either. Always asking why can be just as rude as sayingno all the time. If a DM has made his decision then aasking why is pointless but I know why you are asking because you want the DM to you an answer that you can argue and hopefully get him to change is mind.

This doesn't work in my games because my reasons, no matter what they are, are always justified in my eyes, seeing as I'm the one building the world anyway.

Now you are always more than welcome to politely decline my game and play another.

I am with shallowsoul on this. I have said it before in another thread. Asking why is a challenge to the GMs authority. In most cases a player who asks why is merely fishing for a reason to keep arguing. So as a GM you should ONLY explain why if you know the player well and you know that he isn't looking for an argument. Problem players that like to argue clearly don't trust you as GM. You shouldn't arm the trouble maker with any information he doesn't need.


kmal2t wrote:
I am the DM. I create a world that I have no control over.

"Hey, I see that you don't allow halfling sorcerers. That seems a really strange limitation since halflings are a core race and sorcerers are a core class. I really like halflings and really like sorcerers, is there any way I can play a halfling sorcerer?"

"I am the DM. I create a world that I have no control over."


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Vod Canockers wrote:


It's not one or the other. I enjoy GMing for many reasons, some that you've listed and some that you haven't. But if I say at the start of a campaign there are no Gunslingers, then respect my authority as GM and don't ask to play a Gunslinger.

In the real world with real players at real tables in real games the situation usually goes something like this:

GM: "I don't like gunslingers and so none will be allowed in my game."
Player: "Really, that sort of sucks, I really wanted to play a gunslinger. I don't think they are overpowered and guns actually overlap the medieval swords and armor timeline historically, could you make an exception?"
GM: "No, I don't like them."
Player: "Well, I really don't agree with this decision, but I can play an archer for this campaign."

Then what gets reported on the boards turns into something like this:

"Man! Players these days! Entitled jerks! Hmmph! All I did was try to explain how my world is a carefully constructed environment that goes back 20 years and it's not my fault Paizo introduced this stupid class. Now every player I game with wants to play one and gets all in my FACE if I say 'no.' Jerks!"

I really think this is pretty close to what actually happens.


Adamantine Dragon wrote:
Vod Canockers wrote:


It's not one or the other. I enjoy GMing for many reasons, some that you've listed and some that you haven't. But if I say at the start of a campaign there are no Gunslingers, then respect my authority as GM and don't ask to play a Gunslinger.

In the real world with real players at real tables in real games the situation usually goes something like this:

GM: "I don't like gunslingers and so none will be allowed in my game."
Player: "Really, that sort of sucks, I really wanted to play a gunslinger. I don't think they are overpowered and guns actually overlap the medieval swords and armor timeline historically, could you make an exception?"
GM: "No, I don't like them."
Player: "Well, I really don't agree with this decision, but I can play an archer for this campaign."

Then what gets reported on the boards turns into something like this:

"Man! Players these days! Entitled jerks! Hmmph! All I did was try to explain how my world is a carefully constructed environment that goes back 20 years and it's not my fault Paizo introduced this stupid class. Now every player I game with wants to play one and gets all in my FACE if I say 'no.' Jerks!"

I really think this is pretty close to what actually happens.

I'll be polite enough to disagree and say,

1. GM runs 100 campaigns without a hitch, with players who are 100% willing to cooperate with him/her to build a mutually-satisfying world.

2. GM encounters one problem player in campaign #101, who (for example) refuses to play anything other than a gunslinger, and refuses to sit out of the campaign (much more difficult to boot someone when it's a regularly-scheduled game among friends).

3. GM posts to the messageboards to vent.

4. Every other GM who's ever had a problem player comes out of the woodworks to join in on the player-bashing.

5. Anyone reading the thread gets the impression that problem players are a rampant issue.

I complain about one problem player. But in 35+ years of gaming, I've had ONE problem player and TWO problem GMs. That's a pretty darned good track record.


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NobodysHome wrote:
Adamantine Dragon wrote:
Vod Canockers wrote:


It's not one or the other. I enjoy GMing for many reasons, some that you've listed and some that you haven't. But if I say at the start of a campaign there are no Gunslingers, then respect my authority as GM and don't ask to play a Gunslinger.

In the real world with real players at real tables in real games the situation usually goes something like this:

GM: "I don't like gunslingers and so none will be allowed in my game."
Player: "Really, that sort of sucks, I really wanted to play a gunslinger. I don't think they are overpowered and guns actually overlap the medieval swords and armor timeline historically, could you make an exception?"
GM: "No, I don't like them."
Player: "Well, I really don't agree with this decision, but I can play an archer for this campaign."

Then what gets reported on the boards turns into something like this:

"Man! Players these days! Entitled jerks! Hmmph! All I did was try to explain how my world is a carefully constructed environment that goes back 20 years and it's not my fault Paizo introduced this stupid class. Now every player I game with wants to play one and gets all in my FACE if I say 'no.' Jerks!"

I really think this is pretty close to what actually happens.

I'll be polite enough to disagree and say,

1. GM runs 100 campaigns without a hitch, with players who are 100% willing to cooperate with him/her to build a mutually-satisfying world.

2. GM encounters one problem player in campaign #101, who (for example) refuses to play anything other than a gunslinger, and refuses to sit out of the campaign (much more difficult to boot someone when it's a regularly-scheduled game among friends).

3. GM posts to the messageboards to vent.

4. Every other GM who's ever had a problem player comes out of the woodworks to join in on the player-bashing.

5. Anyone reading the thread gets the impression that problem players are a rampant issue.

I complain about one problem player. But in...

I'm not sure your response is actually a "disagreement" with mine Nobody. You're making a fairly similar observation that drives the same point home, which is that this whole thing is probably nothing but an internet driven exaggeration of real world gaming behavior.

I've literally never seen what these people are whining incessantly about. Not in 35+ years of gaming. Sure I've seen some back and forth and I've been part of some back and forth on player vs GM desires in a game. But I have yet to see a situation where a player "demanded" that he get his way, or where a GM simply said "I'm the GM, my word is law, if you don't like it don't let the door hit you on the way out." What I have seen is a few cases where the GM and player sit down and work out a compromise. Sometimes the player gets his way, more often the GM gets his way, but usually the result is that both meet sort of in the middle.

This entire thing is, in my opinion anyway, lots of sound and fury, signifying nothing.


Aranna wrote:
I am with shallowsoul on this. I have said it before in another thread. Asking why is a challenge to the GMs authority. In most cases a player who asks why is merely fishing for a reason to keep arguing. So as a GM you should ONLY explain why if you know the player well and you know that he isn't looking for an argument. Problem players that like to argue clearly don't trust you as GM. You shouldn't arm the trouble maker with any information he doesn't need.

I can kind of see that argument.

I'd counter by saying that the GM should explain why without being asked. In fact, in general these kind of limitations should be part of house rules or of the campaign pitch along with at least some reasoning, rather than only raised when a player proposes a character.

If your campaign world has no dwarves, tell me that up front and I won't even propose a dwarf. If you don't, and I propose a dwarven character and you just say "You can't play a dwarf", I'm going to ask why? If you're banning classes or abilities for mechanical reasons as a house rule, that's fine and requires one kind of response. If you're banning them for fluff/gameworld integrity reasons, then there's another response. If you ban gunslingers because you think the mechanics are broken, I'll play something else. Maybe a ranged fighter who uses guns? If you ban them because guns don't fit in your fantasy world, maybe we can refluff the mechanics to work with crossbows. Or not, if I'm looking for the fluff rather than the crunch. Similarly for things like Ninja or Samurai.

I'll work with you. I don't have any problems with games with odd restrictions. But I can't do that if I don't know why the restrictions are there.

Again, better by far if the limitations are up front.


If there are "trust issues between the player and the GM" there are going to be problems regardless.

Shadow Lodge

thejeff wrote:
I'd counter by saying that the GM should explain why without being asked. In fact, in general these kind of limitations should be part of house rules or of the campaign pitch along with at least some reasoning, rather than only raised when a player proposes a character.

What if the reasoning, in full, is simply "I don't like X"? Should the GM have to run a campaign with X, despite his dislike of it, just because he doesn't have a fully rational reason for that dislike? At what point do the GM's likes and dislikes begin to be considered?

Silver Crusade

Vincent Takeda wrote:

To your point though I'm also not arguing that its the gms discretion on a one-on-one either. Quite the opposite. I think if you have a character concept everyone's jazzed about and the table likes it but your gm gets all futzy about it then sorry. In my book gm dont win just because he's got the paintbrush, and like every table if the gm cant find the fun in doing what the players want to play, he don't need the paintbrush this time around. If he says here's how I want to run it, and you say well here's what I had in mind, and the rest of the table says it sounds like a good idea, and the gm says 'well I wont want to run that' then he shouldn't. And its ok. You just say 'any body else want to run it? Want me to run it?

If the table says go, and only the gm says no. Its done.
If the table says no, and says the gm's game is go, change or go. Simple as that.

Its a sad state of affairs if you're the only one at your table willing to run a game, but none of the players want to tell you off because without you there isnt a game. I'm at least old enough to know i'd rather have no game than a bad one. The fact that there are so many 'entitlement' posts on both sides of the fence says there's probably a lot more of this going on than I feel is appropriate.

I never force a gm to do what he doesnt want to do. I just let him step off or step off myself.

Why should the players decision trump the DMs?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

The same reason the DMs decision should trump the players.

Silver Crusade

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At the end of the day, the rules give the final say so to the DM per RAW, that is a 100% fact.

Now as a player, you can exercise your right to not play.

That's it in a nutshell.


Except ... In a proper game youve sort of implicitly agreed you are playing in HIS world, and unless he just hasnt told you the ground rules, then you are sort of obligated to go along by the time you get to the point of making a charachter.


Kthulhu wrote:
thejeff wrote:
I'd counter by saying that the GM should explain why without being asked. In fact, in general these kind of limitations should be part of house rules or of the campaign pitch along with at least some reasoning, rather than only raised when a player proposes a character.
What if the reasoning, in full, is simply "I don't like X"? Should the GM have to run a campaign with X, despite his dislike of it, just because he doesn't have a fully rational reason for that dislike? At what point do the GM's likes and dislikes begin to be considered?

Did anything I say imply that I wouldn't consider the GM's likes and dislikes? Or that "I don't like X" wouldn't be enough?

I might ask what the GM doesn't like about them. If that's not what I like about them, there might be a way to make us both happy. Example: GM doesn't like stereotypical black pajama ninjas. I want to play a ninja to play a rogue that doesn't suck. We get rid of the fluff parts that annoy the GM, I get the cool abilities, everybody is happy. Or maybe it's the fluff part that I want and I learn that's what he doesn't like and I find something else to play.


shallowsoul wrote:
Vincent Takeda wrote:

To your point though I'm also not arguing that its the gms discretion on a one-on-one either. Quite the opposite. I think if you have a character concept everyone's jazzed about and the table likes it but your gm gets all futzy about it then sorry. In my book gm dont win just because he's got the paintbrush, and like every table if the gm cant find the fun in doing what the players want to play, he don't need the paintbrush this time around. If he says here's how I want to run it, and you say well here's what I had in mind, and the rest of the table says it sounds like a good idea, and the gm says 'well I wont want to run that' then he shouldn't. And its ok. You just say 'any body else want to run it? Want me to run it?

If the table says go, and only the gm says no. Its done.
If the table says no, and says the gm's game is go, change or go. Simple as that.

Its a sad state of affairs if you're the only one at your table willing to run a game, but none of the players want to tell you off because without you there isnt a game. I'm at least old enough to know i'd rather have no game than a bad one. The fact that there are so many 'entitlement' posts on both sides of the fence says there's probably a lot more of this going on than I feel is appropriate.

I never force a gm to do what he doesnt want to do. I just let him step off or step off myself.

Why should the players decision trump the DMs?

What in that post implied that it does?

Is it this?

Quote:
the gm says 'well I wont want to run that' then he shouldn't. And its ok.
or this?
Quote:
I never force a gm to do what he doesnt want to do. I just let him step off or step off myself.


thejeff wrote:
Aranna wrote:
I am with shallowsoul on this. I have said it before in another thread. Asking why is a challenge to the GMs authority. In most cases a player who asks why is merely fishing for a reason to keep arguing. So as a GM you should ONLY explain why if you know the player well and you know that he isn't looking for an argument. Problem players that like to argue clearly don't trust you as GM. You shouldn't arm the trouble maker with any information he doesn't need.

I can kind of see that argument.

I'd counter by saying that the GM should explain why without being asked. In fact, in general these kind of limitations should be part of house rules or of the campaign pitch along with at least some reasoning, rather than only raised when a player proposes a character.

If your campaign world has no dwarves, tell me that up front and I won't even propose a dwarf. If you don't, and I propose a dwarven character and you just say "You can't play a dwarf", I'm going to ask why? If you're banning classes or abilities for mechanical reasons as a house rule, that's fine and requires one kind of response. If you're banning them for fluff/gameworld integrity reasons, then there's another response. If you ban gunslingers because you think the mechanics are broken, I'll play something else. Maybe a ranged fighter who uses guns? If you ban them because guns don't fit in your fantasy world, maybe we can refluff the mechanics to work with crossbows. Or not, if I'm looking for the fluff rather than the crunch. Similarly for things like Ninja or Samurai.

I'll work with you. I don't have any problems with games with odd restrictions. But I can't do that if I don't know why the restrictions are there.

Again, better by far if the limitations are up front.

Two points...

First, I like players that work with me as a GM and will often go out of my way to accommodate someone who respects my rules and works within my vision for the game. It is very wise to look to this advice as a player. Because I doubt I am alone in wanting to accommodate helpful players.

Second, Should I always explain without them asking? Why?! GMs should strive to know their players. If you know ahead of time the player wants to argue then don't be foolish enough to explain things to that player. If you do your in for wasted hours of everyone's time as this guy armed with a reason he is determined to reject argues endlessly.


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shallowsoul wrote:

At the end of the day, the rules give the final say so to the DM per RAW, that is a 100% fact.

Now as a player, you can exercise your right to not play.

That's it in a nutshell.

RAW doesn't have much to say about asshattery though. You can follow RAW 100% and still be an asshat.

In general, I favour the GM in these situations, but I can't see how asking "why?" is automatically offensive. That sounds like kindergarten stuff to me.

It's not hard to say something basically pleasant like, "Sorry, but [insert reason, or at least reason why a reason can't be given]".

RAW, maybe one can say, "Like it or leave". It's the response of a childish wanker though.

Silver Crusade

Believe it or not but some GMs, like me, prefer to stick with the rules and fluff as written as much as possible. I know there can be a quick change of the fluff but some just don't want to do that. Some would rather disallow the class than change the fluff.


Adamantine Dragon wrote:

I'm not sure your response is actually a "disagreement" with mine Nobody. You're making a fairly similar observation that drives the same point home, which is that this whole thing is probably nothing but an internet driven exaggeration of real world gaming behavior.

I've literally never seen what these people are whining incessantly about. Not in 35+ years of gaming. Sure I've seen some back and forth and I've been part of some back and forth on player vs GM desires in a game. But I have yet to see a situation where a player "demanded" that he get his way, or where a GM simply said "I'm the GM, my word is law, if you don't like it don't let the door hit you on the way out." What I have seen is a few cases where the GM and player sit down and work out a compromise. Sometimes the player gets his way, more often the GM gets his way, but usually the result is that both meet sort of in the middle.

This entire thing is, in my opinion anyway, lots of sound and fury, signifying nothing.

I think our only "disagreement" is that you've been fortunate enough to have never encountered such players or GMs. I congratulate you either on your pool of players or your equanimity.

We had to deal with "Mr. Story-Trumps-Rules": "You find yourself surrounded by a high 10' wall that you cannot possibly get over. What? You can fly? No, you find that there's an anti-flying field. Oh, and the wall is frictionless, so you can't climb it, even if you have spider climb or anything like that. And grappling hooks don't work. And the wall is impenetrable, so you can't use pitons. You try to stand on each other's shoulders? Oh, no, you're in a weakness field and you can't lift each other's weight. So, you're trapped inside a wall. What do you do?"

We had to deal with "Mr. My-BBEG-Does-EVERYTHING-Better-Than-You": "You have Profession: Basketweaving at +10? Well, he has it at +23 and he rolls a 20, so he totally humiliates you and the crowd laughs at you, and you lose the basketweaving contest."

And now we're dealing with, "Mr. 'My PC is better than everyone else's, so he should get to do everything.'"

We're adults. We negotiate. We compromise. With guy #3 we've finally told him that his choices are to bring his character in line with our requests (i.e. no free skills or advantageous political affiliations), play a pregen NPC every session, or sit out. We'll see how that goes.

Silver Crusade

littlehewy wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:

At the end of the day, the rules give the final say so to the DM per RAW, that is a 100% fact.

Now as a player, you can exercise your right to not play.

That's it in a nutshell.

RAW doesn't have much to say about asshattery though. You can follow RAW 100% and still be an asshat.

In general, I favour the GM in these situations, but I can't see how asking "why?" is automatically offensive. That sounds like kindergarten stuff to me.

It's not hard to say something basically pleasant like, "Sorry, but [insert reason, or at least reason why a reason can't be given]".

RAW, maybe one can say, "Like it or leave". It's the response of a childish wanker though.

What exactly do you hope to achieve by asking why?

Also, a player that keeps asking even after being told no is an asshat.

When I say no I say and mean no. I don't keep on about it and I don't keep it open for discussion.


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I WILL LEARN TO WEAVE THE GREATEST BASKETS THAT GOLARION HAS EVER SEEN, YOU WILL RUE THIS DAY, BBEG, MARK MY WORDS


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It sounds like in enforcing rule 0 you violate rule 0, shallowsoul.


NobodysHome wrote:
Stuff...

Stop wasting time on that campaign and make more updates on your RotRL thread. I'm entitled to read it now dammit!

PS. Will you make a thread about the kingmaker campaign?


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shallowsoul wrote:

What exactly do you hope to achieve by asking why?

Also, a player that keeps asking even after being told no is an asshat.

When I say no I say and mean no. I don't keep on about it and I don't keep it open for discussion.

Well, I like to understand you.

Maybe if I understand your reasons for disallowing something, I can avoid proposing other things you might disallow.

I've said in other threads that I like to "fit in" when I make PCs, both with the party and the setting. Perhaps you explaining your decision can help me do that better.

And no, I'm not being facetious.

When a simple request for enlightenment gets a "Screw you", I understand something about you, too.

Silver Crusade

littlehewy wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:

What exactly do you hope to achieve by asking why?

Also, a player that keeps asking even after being told no is an asshat.

When I say no I say and mean no. I don't keep on about it and I don't keep it open for discussion.

Well, I like to understand you.

Maybe if I understand your reasons for disallowing something, I can avoid proposing other things you might disallow.

I've said in other threads that I like to "fit in" when I make PCs, both with the party and the setting. Perhaps you explaining your decision can help me do that better.

And no, I'm not being facetious.

When a simple request for enlightenment gets a "Screw you", I understand something about you, too.

Why do you need to ask me again to find out information on preferences when I have already told you?

Okay lads, I'm running a campaign and im not going to allow XYZ.

DM, can I play X?

No, I already informed you what isn't allowed.

But why? I need to know so I won't ask again in the future.

*smiles* Seriously? Are you really saying his?

Where did you get a "screw you" from? Are you one of those people that take no personally?


Aranna wrote:
Second, Should I always explain without them asking? Why?! GMs should strive to know their players. If you know ahead of time the player wants to argue then don't be foolish enough to explain things to that player. If you do your in for wasted hours of everyone's time as this guy armed with a reason he is determined to reject argues endlessly.

There's something of a difference between "Don't bother to explain to the player you know is going to just argue endlessly" and "Don't bother to explain unless you know the player isn't going to just argue endlessly"

One relies on previous experience. The other assumes all players are jerks until proven otherwise.

And I'd still probably give the first level of explanation and stop after that.


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shallowsoul wrote:
littlehewy wrote:
shallowsoul wrote:

What exactly do you hope to achieve by asking why?

Also, a player that keeps asking even after being told no is an asshat.

When I say no I say and mean no. I don't keep on about it and I don't keep it open for discussion.

Well, I like to understand you.

Maybe if I understand your reasons for disallowing something, I can avoid proposing other things you might disallow.

I've said in other threads that I like to "fit in" when I make PCs, both with the party and the setting. Perhaps you explaining your decision can help me do that better.

And no, I'm not being facetious.

When a simple request for enlightenment gets a "Screw you", I understand something about you, too.

Why do you need to ask me again to find out information on preferences when I have already told you?

Okay lads, I'm running a campaign and im not going to allow XYZ.

DM, can I play X?

No, I already informed you what isn't allowed.

But why? I need to know so I won't ask again in the future.

*smiles* Seriously? Are you really saying his?

Where did you get a "screw you" from? Are you one of those people that take no personally?

Ok, well that's a little different from what your tone upthread suggested.

If you've told me that XYZ is out, I'm not going to ask to play X, Y or Z. I don't know why you assume that I would. That'd be a dumb thing to do.

Even so, I'd like to know why. If it's "I don't like it", I'm cool with that. I don't like, and haven't ever allowed, gunslingers in PF. But when I've been asked why, I've been happy to have a conversation about it.

You know, like a person that has the basic ability to communicate civilly with other people.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
shallowsoul wrote:
At the end of the day, the rules give the final say so to the DM per RAW, that is a 100% fact.

You should quote all of that 'rule'.

Quote:
Although the Game Master is the final arbiter of the rules, the Pathfinder RPG is a shared experience, and all of the players should contribute their thoughts when the rules are in doubt.


It's because most of us seem to start off gaming as part of a power fantasy.

Some of us let it go to their heads and they become dictators.
Yes, I've exercised my right as a player and walked away from games, even those run by good friends, because they were crap (tageting players for retaliation, godlike GMPCS, continuous fiats always against PCs)

I evolved rather quickly into the cooperative mindset. I shy away from control freaks.

Now, these days, as family, work and school take up my time, I mostly play. But my GM is the cooperative sort who works WITH his players. I even throw plothooks for the game at him. Some he uses, some he doesnt, some, he changes. His choice.

When one fellow player wanted modern firearms (dude I've known for over 20 years), we BOTH killed that.

So am I entitled? I'm entitled to something I can enjoy, so is my GM. He's footing the bill and time for the AP. I'm creating backstory, helping the other players with their backgrounds and writing the group's main archive.

Of course, out of the 6 of us, we've all GM'ed at some point (two others have active games, one we will NEVER allow to run a game ever again [I've walked out on two of his and told him why] and another doesn't want to anymore), so we're familiar with story crafting and reasonable balance.

We may be unusual, though.


shallowsoul wrote:

At the end of the day, the rules give the final say so to the DM per RAW, that is a 100% fact.

Now as a player, you can exercise your right to not play.

That's it in a nutshell.

This was the post that has a definite shutdown feel to it. This:

"RAW says I'm 100% just allowed to say no."

"Yeah, but I'd just like to know why."

"As a player, you can exercise your right to not play."

is what I interpreted as fairly "screw you"ish.


thejeff wrote:


How does this post match with your post in the other thread about the campaign world with no dwarves? Was that an example of GM entitlement?

Because, to me, that sounds like a perfect example of the ""You can't do/play Y because of Z" from the DM" in the OP.

That one is easy. You can play a human with dwarven traits (give up bonus feat, skill points, etc for Stonecunning, +2 vs magic/poison, etc)

That way there are no dwarf, you aren't a dwarf, and both of you are happy.


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shallowsoul wrote:

Why do you need to ask me again to find out information on preferences when I have already told you?

Okay lads, I'm running a campaign and im not going to allow XYZ.

DM, can I play X?

No, I already informed you what isn't allowed.

But why? I need to know so I won't ask again in the future.

*smiles* Seriously? Are you really saying his?

Where did you get a "screw you" from? Are you one of those people that take no personally?

If I know why maybe I can change my concept to fit with what you want? Or maybe not and I have to find another one.

Also, your example is so skewed towards the player being a jerk.

How about:
Okay lads, I'm running a campaign and im not going to allow XYZ.

Sounds like fun. Why don't you allow X? <unspoken: I've got a concept like X that I could build with V, but don't want to if it would tread on the part you don't like>

Response A: I said I don't allow X. Stop asking, asshat!
Okay. <backs away slowly and quits game.>

Response B: Because I don't like the way they <reason>
Okay. Seems reasonable. <Either pitches the V concept if it doesn't conflict with the stated reason or comes up with something else.>


LowRoller wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
Stuff...

Stop wasting time on that campaign and make more updates on your RotRL thread. I'm entitled to read it now dammit!

PS. Will you make a thread about the kingmaker campaign?

Hey, I've done my job! The latest-n-greatest is out for review by the players. And Hi's even reviewed it already! Yell at Shiro and Raesh!

And no; I'm afraid Kingmaker was just the wrong AP for me. I'm a "stick 'em in a city and let them interact with dozens of NPCs" kind of GM, and so my attempt at "stick 'em in the wilderness and let them have random encounters and level up" was an epic fail as a GM on my part, so I'm handing it off to a GM (Shiro's player, in fact) who's far more sandbox-friendly.


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Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
littlehewy wrote:


This was the post that has a definite shutdown feel to it. This:

"RAW says I'm 100% just allowed to say no."

"Yeah, but I'd just like to know why."

"As a player, you can exercise your right to not play."

is what I interpreted as fairly "screw you"ish.

You are not alone in that interpretation.


thejeff wrote:
Aranna wrote:
Second, Should I always explain without them asking? Why?! GMs should strive to know their players. If you know ahead of time the player wants to argue then don't be foolish enough to explain things to that player. If you do your in for wasted hours of everyone's time as this guy armed with a reason he is determined to reject argues endlessly.

There's something of a difference between "Don't bother to explain to the player you know is going to just argue endlessly" and "Don't bother to explain unless you know the player isn't going to just argue endlessly"

One relies on previous experience. The other assumes all players are jerks until proven otherwise.

And I'd still probably give the first level of explanation and stop after that.

One of my golden rules of good GMing is to know your players. If you don't already know this player then you are going to make mistakes whatever you do till you do know them. Best not to worry about his feelings till you have a good idea what will bother him and what won't. Remember the fastest way to learn is by making mistakes. You can always apologize later and avoid his buttons in the future. But if you coddle him from day one then you may never know the real him.


Adamantine Dragon wrote:
Vod Canockers wrote:


It's not one or the other. I enjoy GMing for many reasons, some that you've listed and some that you haven't. But if I say at the start of a campaign there are no Gunslingers, then respect my authority as GM and don't ask to play a Gunslinger.

In the real world with real players at real tables in real games the situation usually goes something like this:

GM: "I don't like gunslingers and so none will be allowed in my game."
Player: "Really, that sort of sucks, I really wanted to play a gunslinger. I don't think they are overpowered and guns actually overlap the medieval swords and armor timeline historically, could you make an exception?"
GM: "No, I don't like them."
Player: "Well, I really don't agree with this decision, but I can play an archer for this campaign."

Then what gets reported on the boards turns into something like this:

"Man! Players these days! Entitled jerks! Hmmph! All I did was try to explain how my world is a carefully constructed environment that goes back 20 years and it's not my fault Paizo introduced this stupid class. Now every player I game with wants to play one and gets all in my FACE if I say 'no.' Jerks!"

I really think this is pretty close to what actually happens.

Certainly firearms did overlap during the medieval period. Do you think any PC would like to use a hand cannon? First he needs an assistant as it requires two people to fire it. Second there is no way to truly aim the weapon. Third the reload time is measured in rounds. Fourth it is useless in the rain, or other wet conditions. Fifth do you really want to carry around gunpowder someplace where you are likely to get hit by "Burning Hands," "Fireball," or other fire spells?


It's what gunslingers deal with depending how much the GM hates them. I say it depends on that because I highly doubt a GM would enforce other similar conditions on other classes.

"I hit him with my sword," says the fighter.

"Roll a d%," says the GM.

"Why?"

"It's raining and your hilt is slippery. I need to see if you drop it accidentally."

I highly doubt that's happened in Pathfinder except for those GM who are generally really nit-picky on environment. If you start pulling those shenanigans with gunslingers then you either need to share the "love" equally or you're being antagonistic to your players.


As far as explaining and asking there's a time and a place. It's not always ok to ask why. Ever hear a kid ask why? 300 times? It's not pretty and makes you want to strangle them after awhile and you as calmly as you can tell them its quiet time. Don't ask why a bunch of times in the middle of the game and stop the flow of play. If its before the game and everyone is trying to quickly throw together characters and you're trying to get into a twenty minute debate about summoners..if after one or two exchanges you aren't getting anywhere let it go and move on. The Dm may not even start to explain because he knows you demand a thirty minute debate on it every time, so he may preempt that by simply saying No means no. I'd like to see one real example where someone was so "restricted" they weren't allowed a few classes out of the many there, and all the other characters threw a fit on behalf of that player and mutinied. The more likely reaction is everyone rolls their eyes when you won't let it go and basically tell you to stafoo and choose something else.

I see no reason why the Player and DM can't have email exchanges about an issue as long as its well before the game and the DM is open to listening to the Players argument. This doesn't mean he should be subjected to essays about why Synthesist Sorcerers are awesome and be forced to take hours of his time in email exchanges with players begging for certain classes.

And if Setting didn't trump CRB and supplement books then there'd be no way to ever play anything other than Golarion.

DM: I think I'm gonna run a Dark Sun campaign next.
Player: We can't do that, it limits magic RAW in the CRB and I want to play a Synthesist Hurricane-Summoner.
DM: thsoe don't exist in Dark sun and would ruin the balance of the setting?
Player: Its in Expanded Advanced Magic Ultima so I can play it and you have to accomodate all my desires or I'm incapable of having fun. Lawyer'd.


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Pathfinder Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Aranna wrote:
Asking why is a challenge to ... authority.

...said every damned dirty dictator in human history.

Kthulhu wrote:
What if the reasoning, in full, is simply "I don't like X"? Should the GM have to run a campaign with X, despite his dislike of it, just because he doesn't have a fully rational reason for that dislike? At what point do the GM's likes and dislikes begin to be considered?

Then he should at least be able to explain the reasons WHY he doesn't like X. Even if the player doesn't like or agree with the reasons, at least then there is mutual understanding.


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I just can't get around how little context is given along with such strong opinions

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Let me share an email exchange I had with a player.

Spoiler:
Steve,

First off, I want to thank you for all your time, effort and energy put into Shackled City. I can tell it is a passion of yours and I respect how much work you've put into this campaign. You have my respect.

So, Emily and I were talking about the campaign and had a few concerns about how it is going to play out. Here are our thoughts.

1. Size of the Group: If everyone is present, we will have a total of 9 PC's. That is a lot to keep the pace of the game going smoothly. This is my primary concern. A simple round of combat with so many people could take quite some time.

2. Complexity of the Campaign: Emily (and even myself) have a difficulty following the story line. After you summed up the story line last night, we were still confused about what exactly is going on.

3. Time Frame: 5p is a bit early for us. Saturdays are our only day where are schedules are completely free, so to speak. The earliest we'd like to start is around 6p, and I know that may not be in concert with Joe and Lila's schedule with Zoey. Every night of the week is full for us except Saturdays, so we try to be very wise with our time together. Anything after 9p may be our time to leave, as well.

4. Motives: I'm a little concerned with your desire to "mess with" Amras, or take him out. I RP because I like to have fun and enjoy it. As a DM, I love setting up players to be successful, enjoy themselves, advance, and be powerful. It makes me hesitant to RP if I have a sense that you may want to single out my character.

Thank you for considering my thoughts and being open to them.

Best, -Jay

Spoiler:
Shanna and I have both been concerned about the size of the group, and is precisely why she has considered having Lyra take on an NPC role. She would still come along to games, but would be more spectator than participant. If you roll Amber Rose, most likely she will do so, as that would be two sorcerers in the party. As it is, we have two parties in one group. It's the same problem as the start of the game, with different players.

The story is complex, perhaps more complex than I can handle as a green DM. I do not describe enough, and I haven't done a good job of keeping the site updated with handouts to help explain the backstory. The massive amount of NPCs to track has not helped either.

I did not realize Joe and Lila wanted 5pm to be the new start time. I had misunderstood that it was only for the character regen session to give us more time. (Which we obviously needed.) We can discuss with them about putting the time back to the normal time.

You only see me 'singling out' Amras because of the rapid communication between us. Joe got stonewalled just as much as you, just at a slower pace due to fewer emails sent. Ti'al is actually a much bigger concern for me than Amras, especially after seeing the results of the character regen. I knew I could challenge Amras. I didn't know I could challenge Ti'al. That is a part of the reason for toning down of the party, while the other part is inexperienced players having trouble with the 'crazy town' rules.

Quite honestly, as much as I want to finish the game, with the changes overall, and the uncertainty abounding, it may end up just being a better option to go back to Silver Marches, if the group can even manage that with the new baby.

Spoiler:
Steve,

Thank you for your response. I'm truly impressed by it, for I was concerned that you would have taken some of what I said as a personal affront, which was not my intention.

So what is next? Perhaps ask the players their thoughts regarding 1) Party size and 2) the story line? I'd be fine picking back up with Silver Marches, but I by no means want to be usurping your campaign.

Thoughts?


Sounds pretty much like the interactions I've had with my players and those I've had with my GM.


But there were no ultimatums. No screaming fits. What kind of gamers are you?!!?

Yeah, that's pretty much it. The crazy exceptions stand out and get talked about online, but most gamers are pretty sane and willing to compromise. That's why I prefer to have my general policy geared towards that assumption and handle the crazies as special cases. Treat people like adults and they often respond well. If they don't, then kneecap them.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Just thought I would provide a real world example.


I tend towards having three levels:
Yes.
Yes, but with conditions, talk to me first.
And: "no, that doesnt exist in this world, if you want something like it you have to convince me its something else."

And then there is the rare "the Dwarvish genocide of the uear of the fruitbat means there are no dwarves to play."


Tri, that sounds eerily familiar to exchanges we've had in our groups.

Some thoughts. If I am reading this properly, one of the concerns expressed was about following the narrative. It was mentioned that materials needed to be updated online. Has that happened? One thing I've learned as a GM is that regular updates and reasonable response times have done a lot to keep players engaged. I try to keep my campaign blog site updated regularly when we play, and do my best to get notes out describing the last session within a few days at most of having the last session. Sometimes I am lazy or too busy and don't get those notes out, and when I do neglect that, it is clear that the narrative is getting a little blurry in our next session.

Also I send out email reminders about activities and do a quick recap of the current situation the day before any session so that players have a chance to refresh their memories about things.

If anything, I probably over-communicate.


RDM42 wrote:
And then there is the rare "the Dwarvish genocide of the year of the fruitbat means there are no dwarves to play."

Heh... Hey! That was a long time ago, and I've learned a lot since then. Also, just to clarify, dwarves are no longer disallowed, and they haven't been for over three decades. The first campaign successfully restored the dwarves and I've had many, many dwarven PCs since then.

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