Common player and DM problems? (researching)

Gamer Life General Discussion

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I'm doing some research for a pet project of mine and was curious to gather notes on common problems with DMs and players. So far I got:

Player side
1. Flaky players who either arrive late, not at all or have to leave mid session, yet still wants to continue in campaign.
2. Guy incessantly fooling around with his phone and getting distracted.
3. Metagaming.
4. Quoting everything....ironically not the holy grail though.
5. Murder hobo-ing.
6. Acting out of character.
7. When it's their turn, they don't know what they want to do and end up delaying.
8. Pauses session to argue with DM on what constitutes evil, rules and other such.

DM side:
1. Railroading
2. Meat grinder of PCs
3. Doesn't want to pull punches (not necessarily a bad thing, I personally prefer not to)
4. Rules lawyering (can also appear on player side)
5. DM NPCs

I've used a DM NPC and the campaign went well despite that.

As for being late, both the players and DM arrive late quite often in one of the groups I play in.

The main offenses I've seen is railroading on the DM side, and being a murder hobo on the Player side.

Powergaming to the expense of roleplaying.

Seconded that murder-hobo and railroad are most common encounters (at least, to my perspective).

Players starting intra-party conflict.
Perhaps overlaps to railroading - but DMs setting up scenarios designed such as there is one particular method to victory and it being non-obvious to their players.
So to put it, it's a corollary to railroading: Railroading in fog.

Dark Archive

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people who do not even text or call that they have to cancel or will be more than 20 minutes late.

Liberty's Edge

I laughed out loud reading this thread. The first three points on the player's side were like you were describing my group!

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Player(s) not wanting to play in the style of campaign the GM wants to run.

GM not wanting to GM certain styles of characters in their campaign.
GM not wanting to GM certain styles of play.

GM/Player reacting passive (or not passive) aggressively to above miss match.

Generally there is problems with either how players/GMs interact, and how characters and campaigns interact, and probably the cross overs.

It's coming up in my group some, but then again for most of us it's our first foray into Pathfinder, or even D&D-style stuff in general, but: lack of game knowledge. I've had to remind our cleric that when he's doing post-battle channelling, he doesn't have to drag people off into a corner to avoid healing the debris fields that the barbarian leaves behind. Or things like not knowing what you have available to your class. These are things that experience (RLXP) will help with, of course, but ...

DM side: Having unclear or unstated house rules.

Player side: Unwilling to read or follow printed or explained house rules.

Icyshadow wrote:

Aren't all NPCs played by the DM? Isn't that the definition of an NPC?

My guys do all but a couple of the things on the player side regularly. But it's ok because it's only a game and we've been friends and gamers together for 30 years in some cases. These are really non issues for us.

Bjørn Røyrvik wrote:
Icyshadow wrote:
Aren't all NPCs played by the DM? Isn't that the definition of an NPC?

I think this is referring to a GMPC instead. I actually did one once, long ago, during my first foray into trying to be a DM in 2d edition.

Mistake. The GMPC was too special. I think that's the issue that arises from GM PCs -- the GM highlights them a little more than the actual player characters, and ... well ...

Player Side
1)Having one power gamer in a group of regular and new players. (Wait, how are you casting Heal at level 9?)
2)Players building characters with unapproved material (You are playing a Ponykind Divine Channeler? You just said you were making cleric.)

GM Side
GM being inflexible with desired characters (usually due to past experiences with power gamers).
GM being inflexible if and when the players do unexpected stuff.
GM using adventure path without reading ahead (this has been a big pain for us, as we sold off quest items, didn't talk to important NPCs, and failed to grasp imporant campaign mechanics).

DM Side: Railroading, preconceived notions of how the story "should" play out and bending the game to fit them, etc. Secondarily, lack of confidence, not knowing the rules, etc. Tertiary: wallowing in dorkitude to the point it makes the players sick.

Players Side: Passivity ("just tell us what to do next") is the worst one. Not knowing what to do when your turn comes up; not knowing what your abilities do and grinding game to a halt while you look them up. And, maybe not the worst, but certainly the most annoying: Not adding up common bonuses (every time your turn comes up, you need to sit there while you add BAB + Str + magic sword bonus to attacks on your fingers? Seriously? Every time, and you can't just note the total somewhere?!)

Players: The attention hog. Always has to be in the spot light, if the group splits in two wants to be in both groups. Tries to change what they did in the past based on what would get the most attention now (e.g. chose to hunt goblin rather than go to the library but when there are no goblin and orcs attack the library wants have gone to the library).

DM: Plays favorites. Certain players and their characters get favored treatment. Plot lines revolve around them, hooks in their backgrounds are used while everyone else's are ignored. Lets the favored characters do things they tell other players and characters they can't do.

Scarab Sages

DM: "Copycat". The DM can't come up with an original plot or NPC to save his life. Everything has to be based on a tv show, movie, or comic book, often without even bothering to file off the serial numbers.

DM: 'Mid-season cancellation." Like a television series that is cancelled mid-season due to poor ratings, the DM loses interest in the campaign while the players are still enjoying it. He doesn't give the players a chance to wrap up the story, or even tell them what's going on. He just stops scheduling sessions for that campaign.

DM: "Mad Scientist". The DM always wants to cherry-pick rules out of other systems and kludge them into his campaigns.

Player: "Cardboard character". Player never roleplays her character. The character has no personality, and lacks even a physical description beyond race and gender.

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Players automatically assuming that they can use any printed material out there for their characters without discussing things with the DM first and seeing what's allowed in the campaign.

Players not bothering to read rules provided by the DM. I have an online group and I swear NO-ONE EVER has an idea of what the game rules are even though they have had them on their computer for 3 months and been participating in the game. They are simply to lazy to read for themselves.

Brother Fen wrote:

Powergaming to the expense of roleplaying.

Ego trips.

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