Sick of players planning out their characters


Gamer Life General Discussion

251 to 300 of 410 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | next > last >>

I might well say something like "just a warning guys, but this campaign might take some pretty severe shifts in direction at a few points, so you might want to leave yourself a bit of flexibility in your characters." And if the choose to ignore that, they choose to ignore it. Up to them.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

The folks I game with complained about the opposite problem the other day -- players who are completely random in their character development. A particularly bad offender was a guy who apparently chose the class he would gain a level in randomly each time he gained a level, resulting in an underpowered mess. I recall another player who was intent on becoming a Master Chymist, which meant that he should have advanced solely as an Alchemist -- but his two level detour into the Rogue class meant that he never actually got to 1st level in his dream prestige class.

Still, there are some things you can plan out that are highly unlikely to be influenced by details of campaign events. In a campaign that is about to wrap up, my goal was to have a Summoner who put everything he could into powering up his eidolon, which meant that he would never multiclass unless Paizo came up with a Boon Companion-like feat for eidolons. Since that never happened, I am looking forward to bringing out that Twin Eidolon capstone ability in the campaign finale. While detaisl of skill and feat choices could be and were influenced by campaign events, I cannot think of anything short of permanent character death that would have detoured me away from sticking with my original class.


A private message is from one party to another. As long as the person receiving the message understands it/has no problem with it/needs no further clarification/what have you, it is no one else's business.

A post on a public forum is something else. It is out there for anyone to read, and anyone who desires to do so (the person specifically responded to or not) can ask for clarification or recommend a more palatable rephrasing that might more accurately represent the person's position. AND none of these things constitute a personal attack.

sunshadow21 wrote:

I give up. You have clearly already decided to not listen to anything I say, so congratulations, you win, I am an ass, and you are clearly completely in the right on everything. Happy now? Can we please get back to the interesting conversation?

Sorry to everyone else for this one, but when people choose to bite at me, I'm not going to simply roll over.

The only thing I think you really need to apologize for is giving congratulations where they're not warranted. Other than that, what, exactly, do you have to apologize for?

*Oh, and Sunshadow, if you want to take that as a personal attack, you can. You'd be wrong, but I'd still give you a free internet. ;)


1 person marked this as a favorite.

The Monomyth - which the now eponymous Heroes Journey was developed from - is much more flexible than some in this thread are giving it credit for. I'd challenge anyone to point out an example of an AP or module that doesn't conform to it.

I haven't played all of the Paizo AP's to have intimate knowledge of them all or I would give you specifics.

Gary Gygax was once quoted as saying that it was not the Dungeon Master's responsibility to "tell a story" but to rather present the scenarios that will challenge the player.

I have always considered the truth to be somewhere between the two.

Your mileage may vary of course - but that is why we have GMs. If you're at my table you will have strong story elements presented to you.

Feel free to run your own tables as you like.


Popcorn.gif for all you guys arguing with each other.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Brother Fen wrote:
Feel free to run your own tables as you like.

Oh, I will brother. I will.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
blackbloodtroll wrote:
Does it even matter that it's a game?

Yes. I believe we should reserve our passion for things that matter.

Everyone here needs to take it down a notch. This was just some guy asking for advice on dealing with his friends, and it's become built up into a huge firebreathing strawman from right after the first post.

Shadow Lodge

3 people marked this as a favorite.

But if you wish to tilt at windmills, who are we to stop you?

Grand Lodge

Lemmy wrote:
Characters don't have their classes advertised on a big neon sign on their forehead.

I've seen several people say that on these boards, but I think it's perfectly okay for character class names to be a real thing in-game that the character can identify himself as, in the same way that people in real life identify with their jobs.

I mean, when someone asks another person what they do, and the response is something to the effect of "I am a cashier", everyone knows that they do not actually mean that they literally are a cashier and there is nothing more to them. Everyone pretty much knows what that person means when they say that they "are" their job, and that there is more to that person than them being a simple cashier.

So a character saying in-game "I AM a fighter", should be no different... Even if someone (like myself) views character classes as a way of life to the character.

No neon sign required... :-P

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Thing is, that cashier doesn't necessarily have levels in the Cashier base class. It's entirely up to the character if he calls himself a fighter, but he isn't talking about the Fighter class when he does it. He means he is one who fights. Even if his class is Barbarian.

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Some of my characters I plan, others I don't .

I actually prefer not to plan and let my characters evolve organically. I think I prefer to not plan ahead. Often I am surprised with how my character has evolved.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Digitalelf wrote:

I've seen several people say that on these boards, but I think it's perfectly okay for character class names to be a real thing in-game that the character can identify himself as, in the same way that people in real life identify with their jobs.

I mean, when someone asks another person what they do, and the response is something to the effect of "I am a cashier", everyone knows that they do not actually mean that they literally are a cashier and there is nothing more to them. Everyone pretty much knows what that person means when they say that they "are" their job, and that there is more to that person than them being a simple cashier.

So a character saying in-game "I AM a fighter", should be no different... Even if someone (like myself) views character classes as a way of life to the character.

No neon sign required... :-P

IMO, characters know what they can do. They know their capabilities and whatnot, but they don't go to "Fighter College" or "Rogue School" a la OotS. When someone stabs you in the back, all that you (and the attacker) know, is that he has the ability to stab you in the back. He doesn't know if his a Rogue, a Slayer, Investigator or Vivisectionist.

That cashier could be a Rogue with ranks in Profession(cashier). Or a Fighter. Or a Wizard. Or whatever. No matter the class, as long as he's working as a cashier, he's a cashier. Your class tells what your abilities are, not your profession or personality.

Anyway... I'm pretty sure we already had this discussion... Let's just agree to disagree.

Grand Lodge

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Thing is, that cashier doesn't necessarily have levels in the Cashier base class. It's entirely up to the character if he calls himself a fighter, but he isn't talking about the Fighter class when he does it. He means he is one who fights. Even if his class is Barbarian.

Like I said, I think a character class is a way of life to the character, so calling himself a Fighter (capital "F"), is announcing to the world that he is more than just someone who simply carries a sword and uses it to fight with.

That's not to say that someone with the Barbarian class can't refer to himself as a fighter (lower case "f") in the sense that he too carries around a sword and uses it to fight with.

This doesn't cause much confusion because, how a character is equipped, says quite a bit about what class is probably belongs to (at least in the edition I play)...

Grand Lodge

Lemmy wrote:
but they don't go to "Fighter College" or "Rogue School" a la OotS.

Ahh, but in 2nd edition, there ARE schools that teach the various classes... There ARE "Fighter Colleges" for example.

Lemmy wrote:
Your class tells what your abilities are, not your profession or personality.

I can agree to disagree, no problem, but you say this with such authority... Like it's a fact for every edition, for every situation. I don't even think it's a fact in Pathfinder, or they wouldn't keep pumping out new character classes in darn-near every rule book they release...

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Digitalelf wrote:
Like I said, I think a character class is a way of life to the character, so calling himself a Fighter (capital "F"), is announcing to the world that he is more than just someone who simply carries a sword and uses it to fight with.

He can call himself that all he wants, as a character in the game he doesn't see "Fighter" as referring to the class, but to the concept of a fighter. Which the Fighter class is certainly intended to represent, and he certainly can be that class. But he will never actually know that in-character.

Grand Lodge

TriOmegaZero wrote:
he will never actually know that in-character.

Again, 2nd edition has schools, academies, and universities in-game that train and teach the various classes. So, in 2nd edition, the classes are very much a thing a character knows about in-game (though they would not refer to them as "class", which is probably why the 2nd edition Player's Handbook uses the terms job and career to describe what a character class means and represents to the character).

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Digitalelf wrote:
Again, 2nd edition has schools, academies, and universities in-game that train and teach the various classes.

I don't consider 2nd edition at any point in what I say.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

I keep failing my will save... -.-'

Digitalelf wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
but they don't go to "Fighter College" or "Rogue School" a la OotS.
Ahh, but in 2nd edition, there ARE schools that teach the various classes... There ARE "Fighter Colleges" for example.

1- This is Pathfinder, not 2e.

2- Even if you have a college that teaches you the abilities and gives you a certificate, that only means that college teaches you a set of skills and that's it. Character still have no idea what class levels are (the same way none of us have any idea what our "character levels" are. We only know our skills and professions). At most, they are officially recognized by a title that happens to match the class' names.

Digitalelf wrote:
I can agree to disagree, no problem, but you say this with such authority... Like it's a fact for every edition, for every situation. I don't even think it's a fact in Pathfinder, or they wouldn't keep pumping out new character class in darn-near every rule book they release...

The reason they keep pumping out classes is because classes sell. That's it. They sell because players want to see new mechanics, either because they want to fulfill a concept in a different way or because their concept can't be fulfilled well enough by the existing classes.

IMHO, restricting specific fluff to an specific class (or vice-versa) is, not only limiting unimaginative, but rather pointless.

Grand Lodge

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Lemmy wrote:
This is Pathfinder, not 2e.

And this is the generic "gamer talk" area of the boards where everybody gets to share their opinion regardless of the game being talked about.

That being said...

My initial couple of posts were fairly edition neutral.

There is no rule in Pathfinder that prevented me from viewing classes as an in-game fact of life for the characters. There is like-wise no rule in Pathfinder that prevented me from viewing character classes as much more than just a sack of tools to be used however one sees fit.

THAT thought process is 100% edition neutral...

It is nothing more than your opinion, that classes are a set of skills that you can use as you see fit. Granted, it is an opinion that is shared by the majority of the other posters here, but make no mistake, it is still nothing more than an opinion on the way classes should work...

Lemmy wrote:
IMHO, restricting specific fluff to an specific class (or vice-versa) is, not only limiting unimaginative, but rather pointless.

And again I say that just because I view classes as more than just a set of skills to be manipulated however one wants does NOT mean I think a character cannot be more than the sum of his class, as he has other abilities at his disposal that are outside of those granted by the class.

Grand Lodge

TriOmegaZero wrote:
I don't consider 2nd edition at any point in what I say.

But you kept responding to very specific things that I said, and I make it very clear that the things I say are said while keeping 2nd edition in mind...

But like I said to Lemmy, the things I said in my first couple of posts were edition neutral.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Digitalelf wrote:
But like I said to Lemmy, the things I said in my first couple of posts were edition neutral.

And that is why I responded to them in an equally edition neutral manner.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

If it's a system it can be learned and predicted. If it can be learned and predicted it can be planned. If it can be planned it can be optimized.


Digitalelf wrote:
My initial couple of posts were fairly edition neutral.

So are my replies. You were the one to mention gaming editions first. Even when I played 2e, I saw character classes as nothing more than ability packs, not the character's profession or personality.

In fact, the existence of "Fighter College" or whatever in no way negates my view.

Digitalelf wrote:
It is nothing more than your opinion, that classes are a set of skills that you can use as you see fit. Granted, it is an opinion that is shared by the majority of the other posters here, but make no mistake, it is still nothing more than an opinion on the way classes should work...

Well... Duh! Of course it's an opinion! I just don't see the need to add "IMO" to every single sentence I post here.

Digitalelf wrote:
And again I say that just because I view classes as more than just a set of skills to be manipulated however one wants does NOT mean I think a character cannot be more than the sum of his class, as he has other abilities at his disposal that are outside of those granted by the class.

And I think you put too much emphasis on what a class means for the character. I prefer to have more freedom of choice without having to create new mechanics every time I want to deviate from the "official" fluff of a class.

It's a pointless and arbitrary restriction. It also doesn't make much sense in-game, IMO. There are archetypes that are completely different from the base class, to the point where no character would be able to say they belong to the same class except for the fact that the players know it's an archetype.

e.g.: Stonelord Paladin, which has barely anything to do with normal Paladins.Slayers arecloser to Rogues and Brawlers are closer to unarmed Fighters than a Stonelord Paladin is to a normal Paladin.

Grand Lodge

Lemmy wrote:
It's a pointless and arbitrary restriction. It also doesn't make much sense in-game,

Obviously I don't think it is pointless, but I do however, think that it makes perfect sense in-game.

For example, the military does not have a single one-size-fits-all course for training their raw-recruits; each branch of the military trains its recruits to the specifics of their particular requirements even though one can claim they all use and possess very similar skill sets...

Thus, in my games, if they were set in modern times, I would require separate kits for each of the 5 branches of the US Armed Forces; or at the very least, have a generic, full "soldier" class, with kits representing the various "special forces" within the different branches of the military (i.e. Army Green Beret, Navy SEAL, Air Force Pararescue, etc.).


Digitalelf wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
Characters don't have their classes advertised on a big neon sign on their forehead.

I've seen several people say that on these boards, but I think it's perfectly okay for character class names to be a real thing in-game that the character can identify himself as, in the same way that people in real life identify with their jobs.

I mean, when someone asks another person what they do, and the response is something to the effect of "I am a cashier", everyone knows that they do not actually mean that they literally are a cashier and there is nothing more to them. Everyone pretty much knows what that person means when they say that they "are" their job, and that there is more to that person than them being a simple cashier.

So a character saying in-game "I AM a fighter", should be no different... Even if someone (like myself) views character classes as a way of life to the character.

No neon sign required... :-P

Two characters.

One exists in Mutants & Masterminds, a classless system (at least, M&M 2E was).

The other exists in your choice of D&D (it doesn't matter which edition).

Both are "warrior" sorts of characters, with the same abilities, skills, and traits (at least, as close as you can get considering they're different systems; what abilities they have, whether skill ranks or feats, represent the same things in-universe, even though D&D and M&M use different mechanics).

Both got their skills from the same source within their respective universes, Fighter College, home of the Fighting Fighters. And both consider themselves to be "fighters", just like a cashier would self-identify as a cashier.

Neither are aware of the meta-universe explanation of why they have the abilities they have. The M&M guy is not aware that his great athletics skills are because of a feat called "Parkour" anymore than the D&D guy is aware that the reason he's exceptionally brave is because his class has a Bravery feature. Nor are they aware that their every dramatic action is determined by a twenty-sided die.

Both are fighters. One of them has the Fighter class. Pure coincidence. A fighter might also be a Fighter or he might not. If the universe isn't even structured in a way that makes the Fighter class even exist, it will make no never-mind to the fighter. He will still be just as much a fighter as he ever was.

Conflating the two, fluff and crunch, is just not necessary.


Muad'Dib wrote:

There too many responses to my post to address each so I'll throw this out there.

When a player plots out so far ahead it makes the GM adhere to the players train tracks. Now it's the GM who has to plot and plan out encounters specifically so that the player can get his/her prestige class or whatever.

This is not true. If you plan to do X in a game that I am running then you are welcome to try, but you can't force me to change the story for you.

Quote:

But more importantly locking your character into a "build" prevents many players from being spontaneous and responding to the (hopefully) dramatic events that happen to them.

Planning does not equal locking so the argument has no merit.

Quote:


Luke Skywalker did not know he was going to be a Jedi knight when he was shooting Wamprats with Bigs at Beggers canyon. Young Skywalker had not planned out his future beyond going to Tashi station to pick up those damn power converters. He got caught up in the story and adapted to the events that unfolded.

Media and games do not cross over well so what happens in media is largely irrelevant.

Quote:


When a player overplans they tend to not be as open to possibilities and IMO are on some level playing outside the narrative of the campaign.

That is once again a problem with the player, not a problem with planning. If two players can plan, but one can also adapt, but the other just refuses to do so then you know who, not what, the problem is.

Grand Lodge

Tectorman wrote:
Conflating the two, fluff and crunch, is just not necessary.

I am aware of what you are saying, and when I play a skill-based game system, my views of what skill-sets characters associate and possibly identify themselves with is quite different than when I play a class-based system (because my expectations are different).

And so while it may not be necessary to view character classes as a character's job/career/way of life, I, none-the-less view them as so. I also view the classes as something that the characters know about in-game; though a character would never say that his "class" is "Fighter" for example, however, he would say that his chosen "career" is "Fighter", (though he is free to refer to his career as some similar name like "Warrior" or "Swordsman").

But whatever he calls his chosen way of life or career, he is quite aware of the fact that he is indeed, a "Fighter" by both trade and title in the same way that a cashier is aware the name of the job he does for a living is also his job's title (and this is true for me for all of the classes in the game, regardless of the edition that I am playing).


Lemmy wrote:
What if my answer is "No, because I don't think it's as effective as the training I'm currently undergoing". That can be said totally in character.

Assuming your character had some way of knowing what the training was going to be, or your character was lying, sure, that's an in-character answer.

Lemmy wrote:
There is nothing "fake" about it! Do players have to play a Fighter to be a armored warrior? Do they have to play a Rogue to be a sneaky scoundrel? Or a Hunter to be able to hunt? Because that is what I'd consider unimaginative.

Which is specifically why I added the bit about the prestige class getting a mechanic at level 1. By taking the prestige class, the character gets access to a unique ability that isn't offered by other classes.

How do you emulate having this ability with out actually having the ability?

Let's make it an even more obvious example. Instead of gaining the ability to deflect attacks at level 1, let's assume that the prestige class granted the ability to use telepathy as a spell-like ability at will.

How do fake telepathy?


Tormsskull wrote:
Lemmy wrote:
What if my answer is "No, because I don't think it's as effective as the training I'm currently undergoing". That can be said totally in character.
Assuming your character had some way of knowing what the training was going to be, or your character was lying, sure, that's an in-character answer.

Or he may just be confident in his own abilities. He is wondering "Should I drop my training, which proved successful so far, to chase whatever mysterious teaching they are offering?". Answering "No." is just as valid as answering "Yes."... In fact, it's actually more likely that the character would say "No". I sure as hell wouldn't have dropped engineering school just because someone offered me place in a completely different university in a course that may or may not be related to engineering. Hell! If I didn't know what the other school is about, then I'd be even less likely to take up the offer.

Tormsskull wrote:

Which is specifically why I added the bit about the prestige class getting a mechanic at level 1. By taking the prestige class, the character gets access to a unique ability that isn't offered by other classes.

How do you emulate having this ability with out actually having the ability?
Let's make it an even more obvious example. Instead of gaining the ability to deflect attacks at level 1, let's assume that the prestige class granted the ability to use telepathy as a spell-like ability at will.
How do fake telepathy?

Doesn't matter what ability the PrC gives. It's very reasonable of the character to choose to follow his own path. The character may not know what class levels and feats are, but he can (and probably does) have an vague idea of what he can accomplish. e.g.: He doesn't know what "Improved Critical" is, but he can very well know that if he train hard enough, he can make his strikes more lethal.... Or at least that he can become far more deadly with his chosen weapon.

After all, whatever abilities he practices were good enough to keep him alive this far, but he has no guarantee that the mysterious PrC or whatever is effective enough to be worth delaying his current training.


Some classes are more theme-heavy than others. If I wanted to play a telepath, I'd probably be willing to join a prestige class for it, provided it didn't stop me getting something else I wanted more through my original class. (Again, though, I think of prestige classes as something you get by acquiring prerequisites as part of a build plan, not through GM fiat.) If I didn't want to play a telepath, I wouldn't join, and I'd make up some in-character reason for why my character doesn't want to be one either.

If, as GM, I wanted to give access to telepathy to my players for story reasons, I'd provide it through an item, or give it as a free bonus ability, or something. A prestige class seems like a clumsy way of introducing thematic elements. Most are completely inappropriate for most characters.


Tormsskull wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
Another reasonable response might be, "Dude, if I wanted to play a Duellist I'd have said so. Why are you trying to choose my levels for me?"
How would being offered a prestige class cause this reaction? Are you suggesting that the GM should review the player's build, see what the player expects to have by certain levels, and then never have anything in the game occur that isn't part of the plan?

No, I'm suggesting that character class choices (aside from necessary interventions like banning things that don't fit into the game world) are none of the GM's business.

If a player is offered a prestige class it's could be due to something that just happened to already be in the adventure, in which case the odds are that it will be completely unsuited for any given character. (GM: "The Dragon offers to make you his Disciple." Player: "I have a Charisma of 9. Am I supposed to become a spontaneous caster for this?")

Alternatively, it could be something the GM has planned out as a development for a specific PC. ("I know he's currently a swashbuckler, but I think it would be interesting if he multiclassed into Red Mantis Assassin, so I'm going to make that part of the storyline. I hope he's not one of those annoying guys who plans his character.") This seems to me like an incursion into the player's territory, and might trigger the "Why are you trying to build my character for me?" response.

I think this gets back to the philosophical difference between those who support and oppose the original post. For many Pathfinder players, the deal is: the game world is the GM's domain, and the character is the player's domain. A GM pushing the player into character development choices is inappropriate, like a player telling the GM what monsters he should add to the dungeon they're going to explore.

Obviously, this is only a problem if the GM does come across as pushy: "What? You don't want to take this opportunity I created for you? Why are you opposed to character development? I demand you give me a convincing role-play justification!"

I don't think anyone would have a problem with: "The church thanks you for helping them out. If anyone in the party wants to take levels in Spherewalker, you can get the special training here."


Digitalelf wrote:
TriOmegaZero wrote:
Thing is, that cashier doesn't necessarily have levels in the Cashier base class. It's entirely up to the character if he calls himself a fighter, but he isn't talking about the Fighter class when he does it. He means he is one who fights. Even if his class is Barbarian.

Like I said, I think a character class is a way of life to the character, so calling himself a Fighter (capital "F"), is announcing to the world that he is more than just someone who simply carries a sword and uses it to fight with.

That's not to say that someone with the Barbarian class can't refer to himself as a fighter (lower case "f") in the sense that he too carries around a sword and uses it to fight with.

Your diction is much better than mine if people can hear your CapiTaLizaTion DiStInCtioNs.


Digitalelf wrote:
And so while it may not be necessary to view character classes as a character's job/career/way of life, I, none-the-less view them as so. I also view the classes as something that the characters know about in-game; though a character would never say that his "class" is "Fighter" for example, however, he would say that his chosen "career" is "Fighter", (though he is free to refer to his career as some similar name like "Warrior" or ""Swordsman").

Hypothetical example: I've gone to the trouble to port Eberron over to Mutants & Masterminds. It's still Khorvaire, with Dragonmarks and dinosaur-riding Halflings and everything. The only thing that has changed is the rules being used behind the scenes to govern what happens and how successful characters are when they attempt to do something. So I'm running this game and one weekend, I'm feeling sick. I can't run the game this week. Fortunately, one of my players knows the setting and knows how to run the game. With a few notes on what locales and other plot-elements to avoid until I get back, he can run the game for a session.

But, he doesn't have my rules-system conversion notes. He has the 4E rules, though. So the players spend the first part of that session making temporary 4E versions of their characters for this one-time session.

Why are the characters aware that anything is amiss (you know, besides the fact that Grevon, the Aundairian wizard that usually accompanies them (and the character of the player who's temporarily DMing) had to beg off their latest adventure for some reason)? More to the point, how would they even be aware of this?

Not hypothetical example: I have a character I played in a homebrewed Final Fantasy d6 game. In that game, there are only four attributes and everything is determined by a pair of d6s. I'm converting that character over to 5E. She is aware that her previous magic is gone (she was a Red Mage and had both offensive spells like Fireball (well, Firaga) and curing spells like Cure Wounds (Curaga)). It was a magic points system. I'm building her now as a Warlock, which uses spell slots, a small number of cantrips, and eventually some Mystic Arcanum. She'll still have blasty spells, but no more Curing (I'm choosing not to multiclass).

She'll be aware that the magic she used to know is gone, and now has new magic to try and figure out. Why should she be aware that she now has six attributes? How would she even be aware of this?

Real Life example: I work as an accountant for a clothing manufacturing and distributing company. Am I able to do that because I took a level or two in Accountant? Was it just a few skill points in Profession (Accountant)? Is it Knowledge (Math)? Or is it just the product of a high Mind score and the thing I put skill points in is Diplomacy (to get along with my co-workers or at least try)?

I don't know. Any one of those explanations, or any combination thereof, or any other explanation I didn't mention could very well be the reason why. But I have no idea, no more than Drizzt knows that he's a ranger and that this is reflected by a Ranger class. I also have no idea why I should know, or even would know, such a thing.


Lemmy wrote:
Or he may just be confident in his own abilities. He is wondering "Should I drop my training, which proved successful so far, to chase whatever mysterious teaching they are offering?".

Sure, again, its in-character. That's the important part.

Lemmy wrote:
Doesn't matter what ability the PrC gives. It's very reasonable of the character to choose to follow his own path.

The ability that the prestige class gives is not related to the "following their own path" bit. Its related to the "faking it" bit that you objected to earlier.

Remember, I mentioned there were three possibilities in turning down the special training? Refuse for in-character reasons, refuse for out-of-character reasons (or, it doesn't match my build), or "fake it."

You argued that it wasn't "faking it" to not take levels in the prestige class.

I was questioning how you role play that you are a member of a prestige class without taking levels in that prestige class, as the prestige class grants a special ability at level 1?

Matthew Downie wrote:
Obviously, this is only a problem if the GM does come across as pushy: "What? You don't want to take this opportunity I created for you? Why are you opposed to character development? I demand you give me a convincing role-play justification!"

I've never seen it handled that way, which makes it difficult to get on the same page.

Matthew Downie wrote:
I don't think anyone would have a problem with: "The church thanks you for helping them out. If anyone in the party wants to take levels in Spherewalker, you can get the special training here."

That's typically the way it works.

Grand Lodge

Tectorman wrote:

I don't know. Any one of those explanations, or any combination thereof, or any other explanation I didn't mention could very well be the reason why. But I have no idea, no more than Drizzt knows that he's a ranger and that this is reflected by a Ranger class. I also have no idea why I should know, or even would know, such a thing.

I said I view that characters are aware of their class, not the mechanics behind it. I mean sure, they would be aware that through this or that class, they will be able to learn this or that skill or ability, but the character would certainly not be aware of the mechanics behind the skills or abilities (e.g. know that they are getting a +1 to hit - vs. knowing that they will, through hard work and dedication, get a little better overall with weaponry).

And personally, if I were playing a game using one system, and the GM could not make it one week, but had the choice of still being able to play using the same characters but using a different game system, I'd politely bow out that week, as it would ruin my sense of immersion. I'd feel the same way about permanently converting characters from one game system to another totally different game system for the same reasons.

Converting characters from one edition to another within the same game system usually isn't a problem, because while certain mechanics have changed from edition to edition, a fighter has remained a fighter from original D&D in 1974 to 5th edition D&D here in 2015. That being said, if I had a character who's class or abilities do not exist in the new edition, and I cannot make the character believably fit within the new rules, I'd rather just to make a totally new character...


wraithstrike wrote:

Planning does not equal locking so the argument has no merit.

Media and games do not cross over well so what happens in media is largely irrelevant.

So says the arbiter of merit and relevance...

TriOmegaZero wrote:
Thing is, that cashier doesn't necessarily have levels in the Cashier base class. It's entirely up to the character if he calls himself a fighter, but he isn't talking about the Fighter class when he does it. He means he is one who fights. Even if his class is Barbarian.

Sadly I have several levels of Cashier from my years working at local stores when I was much younger and had more hair. It's not as glamorous as "fighter" but it does afford me a Save Bonus vs Patience when waiting in line at the grocery store.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

What I think is being left out here is the details the OP gives:

"People who have every skill and feat choice planned out for 20 levels."

It doesn't bother me too much, but I have seen people do this and then get fixated to the point where it is problematic.

Issues of player agency aside, if you lay out elaborate plans and then get upset when things turn out even slightly differently (say, a different favored enemy...) then that is an issue for the group. And that's really what I think the GM / OP is raising here.

Somehow people interpreted that as "ANY PLANNING IS BAD" which is obviously not true.

My sincere recommendation is to go easy and focus on providing useful advice to others on these forums. If at any point you find yourself getting angry, then chances are you're not going to be doing anything useful and you'll find yourself in an extended argument with someone you find unpleasant. It's not worth it.

At times like that, I look for another thread where I can actually be of some help.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
It doesn't bother me too much, but I have seen people do this and then get fixated to the point where it is problematic.

Totally agree, but I would broaden it to say that everyone needs to be flexible about things, without losing all structure to what they are doing.


Tormsskull wrote:
Matthew Downie wrote:
Obviously, this is only a problem if the GM does come across as pushy: "What? You don't want to take this opportunity I created for you? Why are you opposed to character development? I demand you give me a convincing role-play justification!"
I've never seen it handled that way, which makes it difficult to get on the same page.

Nor have I, but that's the sort of scenario some of us imagine after reading this thread.

If the prestige class is appropriate for the character, that almost certainly means the GM planned it out as something for the player to do. That's a unwelcome pressure for a player who wants to choose his own path from all the available options.
If you suggest the player should choose whether to take the class based on role-playing reasons rather than game mechanics, it carries implications of the player being put under the 'Are you a role-player or a filthy optimizer?' spotlight as soon as the scenario is presented.
And the original post makes me think of the GM going, "I'm sick of players like you making a plan for your character and sticking to it rather than accepting my suggestion for changing him!"


Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
Somehow people interpreted that as "ANY PLANNING IS BAD" which is obviously not true.

Because it is always easier to argue against the extreme version of the other side's argument as a way to make your own argument seem so much more reasonable.

Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:
My sincere recommendation is to go easy and focus on providing useful advice to others on these forums. If at any point you find yourself getting angry, then chances are you're not going to be doing anything useful and you'll find yourself in an extended argument with someone you find unpleasant. It's not worth it.

Sage advice.

Matthew Downie wrote:
Nor have I, but that's the sort of scenario some of us imagine after reading this thread.

It makes it incredibly difficult to illustrate my point of view if I have to counter what you're imagining rather than simply what I am stating.

Matthew Downie wrote:
If the prestige class is appropriate for the character, that almost certainly means the GM planned it out as something for the player to do.

I don't see it handled this way. I see it is justification and reinforcement of the campaign story. If there is a particular wizard order that is supremely important to the campaign world, and is somewhat unique from regular wizard organizations, it seems to make sense to have a prestige class to support the concept. Take Red Wizard as an example (from Forgotten Realms).

For custom worlds, I find this practice helps differentiate custom world A from numerous other custom or published worlds. It can also provide a goal for a PC, if the player is interested.

Matthew Downie wrote:
If you suggest the player should choose whether to take the class based on role-playing reasons rather than game mechanics, it carries implications of the player being put under the 'Are you a role-player or a filthy optimizer?' spotlight as soon as the scenario is presented.

Sometimes role-playing a concept can come with mechanical barriers. Personally I find that to be half of the fun. That being said, there could be a million and one in-character reasons why something that seemingly fits a character perfectly from the GM's viewpoint doesn't from the player's viewpoint. And the player of course has the final choice of how their character advances.

My personal preference is that the player finds one of the million and one in-character reasons rather than using an out-of-character reason.

Scarab Sages

As a player, I like to plan out my next levels somewhat, because it helps make the process of leveling up less painful for me and for my GM. I tend to have a hard time making decisions at the best of times, especially when presented with systems like Pathfinder that provide a glut of options. So having an idea what I'm heading for makes thinks simpler. It's like planning your route before you start driving, instead of just heading in the general direction of your destination. I can still change my route if I encounter heavy traffic or road construction.

I have never seen anyone plan out their entire level progression down to the skill rank level for 20 levels. I would be quite surprised to witness that. I don't know about other folks' groups, but my group can never count on getting to play all 20 levels.


Dire Elf wrote:
I have never seen anyone plan out their entire level progression down to the skill rank level for 20 levels. I would be quite surprised to witness that. I don't know about other folks' groups, but my group can never count on getting to play all 20 levels.

I bought hero labs a few years ago and for a long time I was cranking out unused characters like it was a video game. Builds up to 15, mix maxed to the teeth. I'm not alone, check our Ravingdork pantheon of characters, he has some very creative builds.

It's fun, I can see the appeal.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

We call it "Character Sheet Solitaire."

There's nothing wrong with it, but for some people it begins to interfere with actually playing, and that I consider that to be a problem.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Tormsskull wrote:


Matthew Downie wrote:
If the prestige class is appropriate for the character, that almost certainly means the GM planned it out as something for the player to do.

I don't see it handled this way. I see it is justification and reinforcement of the campaign story. If there is a particular wizard order that is supremely important to the campaign world, and is somewhat unique from regular wizard organizations, it seems to make sense to have a prestige class to support the concept. Take Red Wizard as an example (from Forgotten Realms).

For custom worlds, I find this practice helps differentiate custom world A from numerous other custom or published worlds. It can also provide a goal for a PC, if the player is interested.

There are two issues with this.

The first is that there's a difference between making a prestige class and making a prestige class "appropriate for the character." The Red Wizard, for example, is by construction and design largely an NPC class for "traditional" campaigns, because the Red Wizards are evil antagonists. (Similarly, the Sith are often NPC only.)

If you're creating a prestige class as something for the player to do then you're out of line.

The second, of course, is that an GM who uses a phrase like "the campaign story" should not be using that phrase. Or GMing. And I (personally) will happily use that phrase as my cue to deliberately break the game world and the pre-planned narrative. (If you don't care if the other people at the table are having fun, why should I?)


Mythic Evil Lincoln wrote:

We call it "Character Sheet Solitaire."

Perfect name for it.


Orfamay Quest wrote:
The second, of course, is that an GM who uses a phrase like "the campaign story" should not be using that phrase. Or GMing. And I (personally) will happily use that phrase as my cue to deliberately break the game world and the pre-planned narrative. (If you don't care if the other people at the table are having fun, why should I?)

Since you don't like a campaign story what kids of games do you play? Even modules are stories really.

Without a story you are basically playing a warhammer type strategy game no?


I think he means that as a DM he does not already have the story planned out and expects the player characters to following along as he tells it, but instead (*as I do) he presents a situation, a setting, and the story is created by the participation of all the players, including himself.


Orfamay Quest wrote:
Tormsskull wrote:


Matthew Downie wrote:
If the prestige class is appropriate for the character, that almost certainly means the GM planned it out as something for the player to do.

I don't see it handled this way. I see it is justification and reinforcement of the campaign story. If there is a particular wizard order that is supremely important to the campaign world, and is somewhat unique from regular wizard organizations, it seems to make sense to have a prestige class to support the concept. Take Red Wizard as an example (from Forgotten Realms).

For custom worlds, I find this practice helps differentiate custom world A from numerous other custom or published worlds. It can also provide a goal for a PC, if the player is interested.

There are two issues with this.

The first is that there's a difference between making a prestige class and making a prestige class "appropriate for the character." The Red Wizard, for example, is by construction and design largely an NPC class for "traditional" campaigns, because the Red Wizards are evil antagonists. (Similarly, the Sith are often NPC only.)

If you're creating a prestige class as something for the player to do then you're out of line.

The second, of course, is that an GM who uses a phrase like "the campaign story" should not be using that phrase. Or GMing. And I (personally) will happily use that phrase as my cue to deliberately break the game world and the pre-planned narrative. (If you don't care if the other people at the table are having fun, why should I?)

Creating a prestige class you think the players might enjoy is out of line? I'm not sure I follow?


RDM42 wrote:

[

Creating a prestige class you think the players might enjoy is out of line?

No, but creating a prestige class that players taking is key to "the campaign story" is.

Would the story of Star Wars have worked if Luke had opted not to become a Jedi? Probably not -- which is fine for a novel or a film, not so good for a cooperative table-top game.


Orfamay Quest wrote:
RDM42 wrote:

[

Creating a prestige class you think the players might enjoy is out of line?

No, but creating a prestige class that players taking is key to "the campaign story" is.

Would the story of Star Wars have worked if Luke had opted not to become a Jedi? Probably not -- which is fine for a novel or a film, not so good for a cooperative table-top game.

A caveat: If you get a player to buy in on wanting it at the beginning, then it's fine. On the other hand, I tend not to use prestige classes much anyway.

251 to 300 of 410 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Gamer Life / General Discussion / Sick of players planning out their characters All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.