a matter of trust... some reflections.


Pathfinder Society

51 to 100 of 313 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | next > last >>
Silver Crusade ***** Venture-Agent, Canada—Ontario—Toronto aka pauljathome

1 person marked this as a favorite.
nosig wrote:


so, is our "... knee jerk response to any rules question is to rule against the players." To start by saying "No!"? is our "starting attitude Hostile/Unfriendly" until the player makes a Diplomacy check to change it?

Sorry, no simple answer. It depends

My default reaction to a player is definitely friendly.

My default reaction to a player doing something unexpected probably depends on the player and on how confident I am in my own gut reaction/opinion.

Some players I know have extremely good rules knowledge and they very definitely get the benefit of the doubt. Some players I know to be lacking in the rules area and my knee jerk reaction is more likely to be sceptical.

Some areas of the rules I know a lot better than others and so I trust my gut in some areas a lot more than others.

That said, if it is no big deal and I'm not sure that I'm right my reaction is very, very likely to be "Ok, we'll run it that way for this game. But I'll be looking it up and may well change my mind for next session"

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Florida—Melbourne aka trollbill

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Fromper wrote:

Why is everyone so anxious to play big bird? I'd much rather make a parrot based tengu, if we're going to change bird types from the normal black crow.

Why so limited?

How about a Pink Flamingo Bard with shades and Bermuda shorts?

Or an Eagle Knight who is actually an Eagle?

Or a Swallow who carries coconuts (your choice of African or European)?

Or even a Duck Monk?

Dark Archive *

On the Yellow Tengu derail...

Derail:
I have a concept I've played a few times outside of PFS. The character them self is human with the Dual Talented alternate racial trait to represent their true heritage. Their backstory is that they are actually an aasimar who's parents were killed and was adopted by a succubus (or other demon/fiend) as a baby. For traits I have adopted outside of race and fiend blooded, to represent being raised in the abyssal realms and thus corrupted by said environment and upbringing.

With that said,would anyone have an issue with the character having light red skin and 'cute' demon horns? The light red skin would be explained as natural skin color from birth (peri blooded aasimar, for example) and the horns a visible sign of being tainted by the abyss. Or the red skin could also be classified as a visible sign of being raised and corrupted by a fiend/demon in the abyss. Horns would be small enough that while visible (barely poking through hair), they offer no mechanical advantage.

Dark Archive *

1 person marked this as a favorite.
trollbill wrote:
Fromper wrote:

Why is everyone so anxious to play big bird? I'd much rather make a parrot based tengu, if we're going to change bird types from the normal black crow.

Or even a Duck Monk?

No no no, it'd have to be a duck vigilante. That way you can play Dark Wing Duck.

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka Yiroep

I think this thread is now about birds.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Florida—Melbourne aka trollbill

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Or for them.

Sorry, Nosig, I am digressing again. And after you even quoted me to get things back on topic. I'm such a troll.

***

Fromper wrote:

Why is everyone so anxious to play big bird? I'd much rather make a parrot based tengu, if we're going to change bird types from the normal black crow.

Because he's a favourite from our childhood days? Besides, who doesn't want to kick ass as Big-Friggin-Bird? XD

Grand Lodge **** Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento aka FLite

FiddlersGreen wrote:
Fromper wrote:

Why is everyone so anxious to play big bird? I'd much rather make a parrot based tengu, if we're going to change bird types from the normal black crow.

Because he's a favourite from our childhood days? Besides, who doesn't want to kick ass as Big-Friggin-Bird? XD

Because if you play him as a mammoth rider you can get big bird and snuffleufugus (sp?)

Alternately, because you want to give him Con 7 and name him Canary.

Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

Nefreet wrote:

I'm generally trusting of people, but certain behaviors raise red flags quick with me

  • using a GM screen
  • So a GM using a tool that is almost as iconic as dice and books makes you distrustful of them?

    Dark Archive *

    Bob Jonquet wrote:
    Nefreet wrote:

    I'm generally trusting of people, but certain behaviors raise red flags quick with me

  • using a GM screen
  • So a GM using a tool that is almost as iconic as dice and books makes you distrustful of them?

    Bet your bottpm dollar it's suspicious, if it's a PLAYER using a GM screen.

    Silver Crusade ****

    GM screens don't make me suspicious, but I don't like them.

    As both a player and GM, I make a point of rolling my dice out in the open, unless I'm the GM, and it's something that needs to be a secret. With a GM screen, players can't see normal rolls, and that can make them suspicious, even when there's no reason to be.

    Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

    2 people marked this as a favorite.

    As someone who has used GM screens for more than 35 years I don't understand the problem, but then again I am not one to hate on the GM for fudging. I learned from Gary Gygax many years ago not to let the randomness of the dice ruin your story. That is not to say death cannot happen. Let's face it, in the old days death was so frequent that you often didn't create any background or character history until the character lived long enough to need one. I also don't assume the GM is fudging rolls against me which I guess could be reason to distrust. But that is something earned over time and not inherently a feature a GM screens

    The Exchange ****

    trust- yes I trust that if I go to a con with 7 slots that I will here something that is off to me. I dont go to play and look for mistakes but when you spend at least 10 hours a week looking over rules than you will most likely spot them.
    example from resent con- arcanist uses his pool points a lot and than tells the GM he is going to burn some spells. later during diplomacy roll says he has a minus 2 mod as he dumped charisma.
    Another guy double wielding scorpion whips. was GM so had to look into that. he-was-counting-them-as-light-weapons.space-button-just-broke.

    The Exchange ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Texas—Dallas & Ft. Worth aka Belafon

    Fromper wrote:

    GM screens don't make me suspicious, but I don't like them.

    As both a player and GM, I make a point of rolling my dice out in the open, unless I'm the GM, and it's something that needs to be a secret. With a GM screen, players can't see normal rolls, and that can make them suspicious, even when there's no reason to be.

    I use GM screens for two classes of players.

    1. Brand new players who may not come to another game if that greataxe crit in the first encounter confirms.
    2. Very experienced players who - when they see the monster make its will saving throw with a 6 on the dice - will switch to spells requiring a fort save.

    I also use it when there is a lot of (potential) bluffing, sense motiving, and perceptioning going on.

    I put a screen up almost every game but most of the time I roll in front of it. It also serves to keep my dice and minis corralled when not in use.

    Sovereign Court ****

    Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
    Nefreet wrote:

    I'm generally trusting of people, but certain behaviors raise red flags quick with me:

  • bringing hard-to-read dice
  • I find this one a little 'hard' to take as a red flag, I've been a person who's been told their dice are hard to read. These being the Q workshop ones made for Pathfinder. If someone has gone out of their way to gift me with these dice, and I'm playing at the table with them. I'm going to use the dice they gifted.

    I've seen a lot of people who got hooked on playing by a friend that don't have any supplies going, I'm going to play Pathfinder and there are these cool Pathfinder dice this works, and buys them.

    I've spent the effort at times to make really hard dice to read more readable [i.e. Forest dice from Q workshop] by trying to make the colors pop out more. A dedicated gamer will want something interesting to make themselves pop at a table, and not just the same old plain colored dice.

    Given that a lot of Chessex dice proved to be not weighted correctly after the salt test came out - many of us changed dice manufactures and there are not many out there. I now own a set of Artisan Dice and many Q workshop dice. -- This is not something most gamers can afford to drop money on Artisan Dice which run $100+ for a polyhedral set. That leaves companies like Q workshop which fall under the category of 'hard-to-read' but also beautiful works art in themselves.

    Honestly I'd rather pay for a good set of Q-workshops hard-to-read instead of 5 or 6 Chessex sets to find that they are off weight to say 1. [After the test, I had about 4 sets that were weighted to roll 1-5, 2 set to 20-18, out of about 10 sets of dice.]

    **** Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka Gwen Smith

    Fromper wrote:

    GM screens don't make me suspicious, but I don't like them.

    As both a player and GM, I make a point of rolling my dice out in the open, unless I'm the GM, and it's something that needs to be a secret. With a GM screen, players can't see normal rolls, and that can make them suspicious, even when there's no reason to be.

    I use a GM screen, but I don't have my dice behind it. I have all the maps, notes, minis, etc. hidden behind the screens to avoid spoilers.

    And I have all the skill summaries, creature types and traits, object hardness tables, etc. on the screen. It's a 4 page cheat sheat more than anything else.

    Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

    If you choose to use hard to read dice, consider not touching them afterwards just in case there is a question regarding the results. There is one player locally who I will not play with because his dice results are soo out of the statistical norm to be unacceptable. He is either intentionally cheating which has been problematic to prove (he knows all the tricks to conceal the results) or his dice are manufactured out of balance. Efforts to "correct" the problem have been unsuccessful and his regular GMs seem to be accepting of his actions. So, I just st choose not to play with him.

    *****

    Bob Jonquet wrote:
    Nefreet wrote:

    I'm generally trusting of people, but certain behaviors raise red flags quick with me

  • using a GM screen
  • So a GM using a tool that is almost as iconic as dice and books makes you distrustful of them?

    It raises a red flag for me. I vastly prefer GM's to be open with how they play. When running in person I don't use a screen and make the vast majority of my rolls in the open. Likewise when running online my dice are open to the players. Let the dice fall where they may, it is only a game after all.

    My view *might* be different if I was running for a lot of newbies but as I mostly run online it isn't as much of an issue.

    The Exchange ***

    I don't think there is too much problem with hiding the rolls if you want to. Like someone mentioned hiding an enemies saving throw bonuses etc is a perfectly reasonable reason to keep it hidden.

    ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka Yiroep

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    I raise an eyebrow when certain GMs use screens. The most tempting thing to do is not have a monster fail against a save or suck. It can make it really frustrating to play a save or suck caster in those instances, because if the GM just decides the monster always saves, your character is basically doing nothing. (I have had a GM do that before). But for most GMs, I'm fine with it.

    Silver Crusade ****

    4 people marked this as a favorite.

    The other issue with GM screens, which has nothing to do with hiding rolls, is the psychological factor. Putting that literal barrier between the GM and the players just seems unfriendly to some players. It's kind of like the body language of folding your arms in front of you. I prefer to keep things open, casual, and friendly by not using a screen.

    And again, I don't object to screens, I'm just pointing out why some players don't like them.

    Sczarni ***** ⦵⦵

    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Starfinder Charter Superscriber

    Regarding Bluff, Stealth, Sleight of Hand, etc, I almost always have the bad guys Take 10, so I don't need a screen for the results to be secret. It also makes the DC the same every time I run the scenario.

    All of those behaviors I mentioned earlier simply raise red flags for me. They don't mean that I can't be trusting of those people, but my starting attitude might be indifferent rather than friendly.

    One of my many anecdotes on the matter:
    There used to be a GM in my area that used a screen (I can't think of any today that do), and he was known for his first attack always being a natural 20.

    When I eventually asked him why, he confided with me that he felt it "woke up" his players, or made combat with mooks "seem like a threat" or a "real challenge".

    He had other technically illegal behaviors as well, all of which could only be possible with the use of a screen. I'm pretty sure he's done with Society, though I'm not sure if that was a contributing reason.

    Grand Lodge **** Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento aka FLite

    Nefreet wrote:

    Regarding Bluff, Stealth, Sleight of Hand, etc, I almost always have the bad guys Take 10, so I don't need a screen for the results to be secret. It also makes the DC the same every time I run the scenario.

    All of those behaviors I mentioned earlier simply raise red flags for me. They don't mean that I can't be trusting of those people, but my starting attitude might be indifferent rather than friendly.

    ** spoiler omitted **

    I prefer to use one. But the tables are way too small.

    Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    andreww wrote:
    Let the dice fall where they may, it is only a game after all

    I've heard this sort of comment quite a bit in the forums and I can understand it to a point. Yes, PFS is a game, but RPG are not typical games. In nearly every other game genre the object is to win. Either competitively or cooperatively. However, RPG are more about the journey, the experience of the game. Your characters are extraordinary, even supernatural beings performing momentous actions, completing heroic or villainous journeys that people will be immortalizing in story and song for generations. Not some strict adherence to the completely unremarkable randomness of a piece of plastic in the real word. If sometimes I have to "fudge" the dice, I would hope [players] know I am doing it to increase their enjoyment of the game to improve the experience. If not, then perhaps I have lost touch with what the game is all about and it has evolved past this old grognard.

    Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    " wrote:
    ** spoiler omitted **

    Sounds more like a poor GM than an issue with the GM screen. Sure it might have aided his behavior, but I'm sure he would have found ways to "cheat" anyway. All I am saying is that players that bring hard to read dice or dice trays to the table should not automatically be suspicious, neither should a GM with a screen. Let people demonstrate their bad behavior before you profile them.

    Silver Crusade ***** Venture-Agent, Canada—Ontario—Toronto aka pauljathome

    2 people marked this as a favorite.

    I roll my dice openly, mostly to protect myself from the impulse to fudge too much for the players.

    I think games are (for most players) most exciting when the players know there is risk. And rolling openly greatly increases that perceived risk. When I roll openly they know that it was honest luck that caused them to be missed.

    There are still lots of techniques that I can use to softball a game if I think that is a good idea (new players, compensating for a really bad party make up, etc).

    Dark Archive *

    Bob Jonquet wrote:
    " wrote:
    ** spoiler omitted **
    Sounds more like a poor GM than an issue with the GM screen. Sure it might have aided his behavior, but I'm sure he would have found ways to "cheat" anyway. All I am saying is that players that bring hard to read dice or dice trays to the table should not automatically be suspicious, neither should a GM with a screen. Let people demonstrate their bad behavior before you profile them.

    I use to always use a GM screen. The old AD&D one was fairly compact and didn't take much space up. Plus it had all the important charts I'd need to look up at some point. Saving throws, Thac0, and so forth. One reason I like using a GM screen is that I have been known to fudge dice in the player's favor on occasion. Especially at low levels when death is far too common. I'm not excessively easy on the players, but I have been known to ignore a crit I rolled on the level 1 party member. Not every time, but when it feels outstandingly unfair (sneak attack during surprise round for example) I might downgrade that crit into a normal hit. And maybe fudge a little by claiming I rolled lower then I did. Especially if I'd rolled max damage.

    That's not an option when the players can see every roll you make. Similarly, the tension building tactic of grabbing your dice and making an unseen roll isn't possible. The players don't know why you rolled. They don't know what you rolled. Just that you rolled. Even if you weren't actually rolling for anything, this can be used to prod a slow going party when they're taking too much time examining that completely empty room for the non-existent secret door they're absolutely convinced is there.

    One reason I've stopped doing so is that GM screens have gotten too big. They're too tall to see over, which I dislike. I prefer my players to be able to see my face, and to be able to see the faces of my players. They also tend to be too big these days, often with 5 panels instead of the old 3 panel setup from AD&D. Okay, sure there is a lot more info to fit onto them. But modern GM screens tend to take up the entirely of my table space. Yeah it hides my GM notes and maps. And lets me keep dice rolls secret when I want to (or don't want to).

    On the other hand, I can't see the players and they can't see me. I can't make rolls where they can see them, because the entirety of my GM space is concealed from their view. If I'm using a map and mini's, I can't clearly see the map without standing up. This is a problem to me.

    Today gave me the idea to use my laptop as a GM screen. It's big enough to conceal my notes and maps (especially if said notes are ON the laptop). Yet it's small enough that I can see the table, I can watch the players, and they can see me. If I need to do a secret roll, I can do so. Or I can roll where they can observe me.

    *

    Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

    I'm hoping for a 'landscape' GM screen someday, vs. the standard 'profile' ones that are prevalent. That extra three inches is HUGE for being able to talk with players.

    I pre-roll/have opponents take 10 some things for scenarios I GM, and then save actual dice rolling for 'corner cases' that aren't covered in tactics. Really speeds things up, and makes the experience a bit more seamless. (No, they aren't all 'nat 20s' -- last time I prepped a scenario like that, there was the average curve, just like the players that were rolling at the table...)

    Grand Lodge ***** Regional Venture-Coordinator, Great Lakes aka TwilightKnight

    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Wei Ji the Learner wrote:
    I'm hoping for a 'landscape' GM screen

    +1

    Ever since the original Pathfinder GM screen was released, I have been asking for a landscape version. When the reprint was done with the new artwork, I was excited...until I noticed it was in portfolio format. IMO, Paizo missed their chance to appease both group preferences.

    Scarab Sages ***** Venture-Agent, Washington—Ballard aka WiseWolfOfYoitsu

    I use a GM screen to hide minis for upcoming combats, handouts, hidden rolls such as the trap spotter rogue getting with 10' of the trap, and the scenario itself. I have my players choose 2-5 d20s from my dice case that I'll use until they start consistently rolling high, and I roll all attacks and saves in the open.

    Silver Crusade ****

    Everyone keeps saying they need the screen to hide dice rolls that need to be secret, but that's not an issue for me, even without a screen. I just cup my hand over the table and roll under that. Players see that I'm rolling, but can't see the result. This works fine for secret trap spotter, bluff, etc checks. In fact, I roll this way every time the player say they're sensing motive, regardless of whether or not the NPC they're talking to is bluffing.

    As for keeping the adventure hidden, I always have one or two pieces of paper on top of the printed adventure. I need a sheet to take notes on, track initiative, etc, anyway, so that's always on top. The second cover sheet is often something related to the adventure, just turned over, so all they see is the blank back side.

    Hiding upcoming minis is a little harder, but if you just keep them in a case, or mix the ones you're planning to use with lots of others, it'll keep the players guessing. Besides, in most scenarios, it's not a big deal if they see stuff in advance - they generally have some clue of what type of stuff is coming, one way or another. For a big dragon or something that you want to surprise them with, it's easy to keep it hidden in a bag until it's time to pull it out.


    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    "Do we trust our fellow players? (on both sides of the DM screen). I
    2) I have not met any GMs in PFS that are just trying to screw the players over and won't listen to reason. What I have met on several occasions are adversarial GMs whose knee jerk response to any rules question is to rule against the players. You eventually can get them to listen to reason, but this frequently require 5-10 minutes of arguments and rules presentations that most players won't want to deal with. Essentially, the GM is starting with an attitude of Hostile or Unfriendly and you have to make a Diplomacy check to change it to at least Indifferent. Ideally I think a GMs starting attitude should be Friendly.

    The problem is I have met a couple of GMs who do screw with you. Sometimes they don't tell you key information about a campaign which makes your characters chances of survival drop. Other times they insist you play a character the way they want not what you want. They rather then attempt to explain why they are cheating about something they scream shut up I'm the GM. I don't mind if a GM says this rule or that rule doesn't apply for a reason even with a simple for the plot excuse. If in the long run I get screwed for a short time but overall enjoy the campaign I'm good with that. I'd prefer a GM tell me before we start that day what he plans on doing regarding the rules. That way I'm not alarmed and calling foul when he does cheat.

    Something along the trust issue is this. Some modules call for a characters death. Everyone I know and I hate those. Even after discovering why the character has to die still often makes it hard to accept. Most times I have seen the module screws characters even more after killing them. Most times players refuse to play even if they know what's going on. As a GM even I have a hard time convincing players to accept this and move on. A GM who isn't as nice to players simply states your dead move on quit your whining I'm the GM. Most times the rest of the adventure no one wants to really play and have seen players simply get up and walk away.

    The Exchange *****

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    Nefreet wrote:

    Regarding Bluff, Stealth, Sleight of Hand, etc, I almost always have the bad guys Take 10, so I don't need a screen for the results to be secret. It also makes the DC the same every time I run the scenario.

    All of those behaviors I mentioned earlier simply raise red flags for me. They don't mean that I can't be trusting of those people, but my starting attitude might be indifferent rather than friendly.

    ** spoiler omitted **

    Wait... you can't Take 10 on any of those skills! There's a danger of failing! (or at least that's what I've been told)

    ;)


    I with bad guys that plan to attack from surprise have them take 10 sometimes even 20. The players haven't complained even when I have told them I do this. They can do a lot to pump their Perception super high easy enough to actually see a monster stealthing even with taking 20. Now Bluff and Diplomacy are trickier. Most situations we actually role play that. It makes it more fun rather then just relying on a skill and die rolling. Having a GM have the monsters use Bluff or Diplomacy on characters to believe they are not bad guys seems sucky. It makes sense the serial killer the PCs are hunting having a high Bluff and making anyone believe he is not the killer but it still feels somehow wrong especially when they take ten.

    The Exchange *****

    Derek Dalton wrote:
    I with bad guys that plan to attack from surprise have them take 10 sometimes even 20. The players haven't complained even when I have told them I do this. They can do a lot to pump their Perception super high easy enough to actually see a monster stealthing even with taking 20. Now Bluff and Diplomacy are trickier. Most situations we actually role play that. It makes it more fun rather then just relying on a skill and die rolling. Having a GM have the monsters use Bluff or Diplomacy on characters to believe they are not bad guys seems sucky. It makes sense the serial killer the PCs are hunting having a high Bluff and making anyone believe he is not the killer but it still feels somehow wrong especially when they take ten.

    I will often determine what the skill check is - then make the role play fit.

    Link to another thread about that..

    Grand Lodge *****

    Im generally pretty trusting of other players and GMs alike, though Im definitely willing to correct something I know is incorrect.

    I like to assume the best intentions in people, and the only things Im not cool with players using at my table (that anyone has ever even tried to use so far anyway) are electronic die rollers and spin down dice (a D20 that goes from 1 to 20 numerically around the die, opposed to a normal D20 where each opposing set of sides makes 21 (20 and 1, 19 and 2, 18 and 3, etc)).

    Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Agent, Florida—Melbourne aka trollbill

    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Bob Jonquet wrote:
    As someone who has used GM screens for more than 35 years I don't understand the problem, but then again I am not one to hate on the GM for fudging. I learned from Gary Gygax many years ago not to let the randomness of the dice ruin your story. That is not to say death cannot happen. Let's face it, in the old days death was so frequent that you often didn't create any background or character history until the character lived long enough to need one. I also don't assume the GM is fudging rolls against me which I guess could be reason to distrust. But that is something earned over time and not inherently a feature a GM screens

    In a home game I think using a GM screen is fine. In organized play, not so much. And, yes, part of the reason is an underlying mistrust of GMs. It's not that GMs overall are untrustworthy. It is just that bad GMs tend to leave a bad enough taste in a player's mouth that they want to avoid that taste again, even if 99% of the GMs they play with don't do that. And while there are GMs that like to screw over players for malicious reasons, I find it much more common to find GMs that screw over players for the best of intentions. This most commonly comes from GMs who want to increase the players' feelings of accomplishment (i.e. story reasons) by increasing the difficulty of a scenario when it seems things are going too easy on the party, but the GM's ability to judge increased difficulty isn't as good as they think it is.

    As an example, in a different campaign that was looser in allowing GMs to modify encounters, I was playing a game where we were up against a nasty BBEG and some minions that were almost as nasty as the boss. We focused fire and were able to take out the BBEG in the first round before he could act. We thought we were doing well, but still had some tough fighting as the minions were pretty nasty. On the second round the GM (who was very experienced) announced that a lieutenant had been lurking in the surrounding crowd and was now joining the fray. The addition of the lieutenant was enough to turn the tide against us as we had blown a large chunk of our resources to take the BBEG out in the first round. What looked like a victory quickly turned into a rout that resulted in two character deaths and a failed mission. I later found out there was no such lieutenant waiting in the wings but that the GM had simply put a copy of the BBEG in on the second round because he thought we were doing so well in the first round (because he hadn't realized how much of our resources we had used to do that well) and because he was disappointed that he didn't get to do anything with the BBEG at all.

    This, and other similar instances, left a very lasting impression on me and is one of the reasons I am a strong advocate of not allowing organized play GMs to modify encounters. Sure, for every GM like this one, there may be 10 that are good enough to modify adventures without causing PC deaths, but it is the GMs that cause horrible experiences that tend to sink in to one's psyche the most.

    Many years ago I posted a thread on WotC's forums call "Honesty vs. Story." In it, I recounted a story of a group of PCs who had fought a long and hard quest to confront and defeat the BBEG. In the first round of battle the party Bard won initiative and cast Hold Person and the BBEG rolled a '1' on his save, the only thing that would fail. The grand and glorious fight the PCs had worked so long for and expected was over with a single die roll. The question was, should the GM fudge the failed save for the sake of story and give the PCs the epic battle they were expecting, or should he be honest and accept what was rolled? This turned into a very long and controversial thread, but one thing eventually started to stand out. GMs prefered erring on the side story, while players prefered erring on the side of honesty. Based on this I started polling players at my organized play tables on whether they preferred GMs roll dice behind the screen (and perhaps fudged them both for and against the PCs for the sake of story) or roll them out in the open and let the dice fall where they may. The great majority preferred the dice rolled out in the open. Based on the results of that informal poll, I put down my GM screen and haven't picked it up since then.

    Ironically, I believe my kill rate as a GM has gone up since I started rolling dice out in the open. But the players don't feel as bad about the deaths because they know I am being open and honest about it. Sure, I could still be modifying things that the PCs can't see, but the fact I roll the dice out in the open demonstrates to the players my willingness to be open and honest as a GM and thus engenders trust.

    The Exchange *****

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    if someone really feels the need to "roll behind the screen" so that they can ensure the outcome, why roll at all? Just pick whatever is best for "the sake of story".


    As far as boss bad guys failing and fudging the roll. I'm kind of in between. Had a lot of fights end with monsters roll bad. I think in about two cases I cheated. Once the entire group got pissed. Most of the group I play with have in Pathfinder and other games refuse to let a bad guy become recurring. They do everything in their power even violate alignment to make sure the bad guy doesn't escape. Had a Paladin gut a bad guy that surrendered but killed him the player metagaming and knowing he'd later escape and be a problem again. While extreme in this case this is normal for the group. So I cheated with a bad guy. He was meant to escape my plans for him to come back as a second in command to a bigger nastier bad guy. I cheated stating on his turn he used a scroll to Teleport. Two players called me a cheat because he couldn't use the scroll his level being too low. Didn't matter I changed it to say boots of teleportation. He can't afford that. This ended in a bad argument. Even when I explained what I planned without giving out details the players felt like I cheated them even though they got all the treasure and experience. It left me feeling angered because I wasn't cheating to cheat. I was fudging the rules to make a bad guy recurring and more interesting. They didn't care still calling me a cheater regardless of my intentions. I refused to play or GM with them for awhile because of the argument.

    **

    Derek Dalton wrote:
    ...So I cheated with a bad guy. He was meant to escape my plans for him to come back as a second in command to a bigger nastier bad guy. I cheated stating on his turn he used a scroll to Teleport. Two players called me a cheat because he couldn't use the scroll his level being too low. Didn't matter I changed it to say boots of teleportation. He can't afford that...

    If you really want to keep an NPC around as a recurring villain, go ahead and let the PCs kill him. Remember, you're playing in a game with resurrection, clone, raise dead, etc. Not-So BBEG surrenders, party says "No way," the coup de grace happens, loot is gathered, and the PCs go home. Real BBEG teleports in five minutes later, gathers NSBBEG's body, casts appropriate spell to win the loyalty of his new, vengeful, lieutenant.

    Silver Crusade ***

    2 people marked this as a favorite.
    Bob Jonquet wrote:
    If sometimes I have to "fudge" the dice, I would hope [players] know I am doing it to increase their enjoyment of the game to improve the experience. If not, then perhaps I have lost touch with what the game is all about and it has evolved past this old grognard.

    A "fudged" die roll has never increased my enjoyment of the game. When a die is "fudged," whether in my favor or against, I feel like I'm on the GM Storytime Train. Choo choo!

    I'm sure that the vast majority of GMs who "fudge" dice have the noblest of intentions.

    The road to hell..., and all that.

    ***** ⦵⦵⦵

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    The Fox wrote:


    A "fudged" die roll has never increased my enjoyment of the game. When a die is "fudged," whether in my favor or against, I feel like I'm on the GM Storytime Train. Choo choo!

    I'm sure that the vast majority of GMs who "fudge" dice have the noblest of intentions.

    The road to hell..., and all that.

    Never played with a first time player not getting a max damage crit from ledford?

    The Exchange *****

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    The Fox wrote:
    Bob Jonquet wrote:
    If sometimes I have to "fudge" the dice, I would hope [players] know I am doing it to increase their enjoyment of the game to improve the experience. If not, then perhaps I have lost touch with what the game is all about and it has evolved past this old grognard.

    A "fudged" die roll has never increased my enjoyment of the game. When a die is "fudged," whether in my favor or against, I feel like I'm on the GM Storytime Train. Choo choo!

    I'm sure that the vast majority of GMs who "fudge" dice have the noblest of intentions.

    The road to hell..., and all that.

    +1

    so very true.

    The Exchange *****

    BigNorseWolf wrote:
    The Fox wrote:


    A "fudged" die roll has never increased my enjoyment of the game. When a die is "fudged," whether in my favor or against, I feel like I'm on the GM Storytime Train. Choo choo!

    I'm sure that the vast majority of GMs who "fudge" dice have the noblest of intentions.

    The road to hell..., and all that.

    Never played with a first time player not getting a max damage crit from ledford?

    oh yeah. Been there. Guy came back and is a regular now. Hooked him.

    Liberty's Edge ***** Venture-Captain, Virginia—Richmond aka Slothsy

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    Yeah, no kidding. First-time ever PFS player, playing the first level of ESSD and the first hit on him was a crit from a x3 weapon... I'm pretty sure no one would fault a fudge there.

    The Exchange *****

    1 person marked this as a favorite.
    Rigby Bendele wrote:
    Yeah, no kidding. First-time ever PFS player, playing the first level of ESSD and the first hit on him was a crit from a x3 weapon... I'm pretty sure no one would fault a fudge there.

    The one I would hate would be the crit in the middle of the game, when the PC is level 2.2, so he has 5 games under his belt. At least some of those scenarios are lost forever.

    Where as in the first encounter of my PCs history? Kill me then - I just happen to have another PC just like her waiting to start, maybe you'll meet her in the next scene.

    Grand Lodge Venture-Agent, Missouri—Cape Girardeau aka J. Wilfong

    Rigby Bendele wrote:
    Yeah, no kidding. First-time ever PFS player, playing the first level of ESSD and the first hit on him was a crit from a x3 weapon... I'm pretty sure no one would fault a fudge there.

    I've had this problem twice now; crit-ing a level 1 character hard enough to take them from full hitpoints to dead on their first scenario. I fudged both times; better to leave new players in the negatives and with a good story to tell than to kill them on their first outing and potentially lose that player from returning to Society. Veterans are another story though...

    The Exchange *****

    1 person marked this as a favorite.

    depends a lot on the player too though.

    Some of them will take it as a challenge... where as if they realize (sometimes even later) that you "soft-balled it" they can feel a little cheated. Seen that too.

    If you feel the need to "soft-ball" something, try really hard to make it impossible to see...

    51 to 100 of 313 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | next > last >>
    Community / Forums / Organized Play / Pathfinder Society / a matter of trust... some reflections. All Messageboards

    Want to post a reply? Sign in.