GM rolling skill checks.


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The Exchange

I know that disguise checks are supposed to be rolled in secret by the GM, what other skill checks would be reasonable for a GM to roll behind the screen to prevent metagaming?


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I feel like quite a few could. Like perception, all Knowledge checks, sense motive... Anytime where failing a check informs the player that there's something their character missed, although the character shouldn't know that. A lot of this came up tonight, actually.

Examples:
Perception - We were investigating a ship and our GM told us to make a perception check, but we rolled too low. The place was covered in poisonous spider webs, so we're like "Screw that" and made peace with the knowledge that we missed out on something. (We should never have known we missed something.)

Knowledge (Nobility) - None of us had a rank in this skill (We were level 1) so we were aware it was impossible to get higher than a 10. Now we're scheming on taking a rank in Knowledge (Nobility) and check a library or something so we can try the check again. (Very meta-y, although I guess we would have researched this mysterious royal object regardless)

Sense Motive - Very straightforward; when you roll a nat 1 on a sense motive, you think "Okay, guaranteed worthless information" or if you roll a nat 20 you think "Guaranteed relevant information!" Ideally, players wouldn't initiate sense motive checks and the GM would alert us whenever our BS detector started picking up on something.

I think the problem is is that on top of everything a GM has to keep track of, he now has to keep track of every skill modifier for our characters and make all our rolls for us? So... On the one hand this seems like something a well designed app could handle, and that would be a cool tool for a GM to have access to. On the other hand, players are expected to take charge and be responsible for everything their character does, so I'm wondering if this needlessly encroaches on the small part of the world the players have control over?

In the end, Pathfinder isn't a video game so not everything runs as smoothly or automated as you might hope. I've made my peace with meta moments, but if your gaming group can accommodate ways to diminish opportunities for meta knowledge, more power to ya!


Any skill check where the result isn't directly apparent can be rolled by the DM.

The Exchange

Whatever the GM feels she has the capacity to track. Players can get metagame information from almost any skill in the way Chort mentions. The ones that I think the GMs might roll (and in bold the ones they really should roll).

Appraise - If it's critical that the players might be willing to pay more/less for something.
Disable Device - to try to sabotage something
Disguise
Perception - If the PCs are trying to do something specific like pierce a suspected disguise. Definitely roll secretly if a rogue has trapspotter.
Sense Motive - Definitely prone to metagaming.
Stealth - usually I let the players do it, but if you really want to you can hide it.


Perception & Sense Motive are the most obvious.


Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

As a DM, I never roll for my players. I use one of two possible solutions:

1) for most passive uses of perception and sense motive, just assume the player is taking ten.

2) If it's really important, or if the player is doing something active to instigate the check, I have the player roll towards me, then I kind of catch the roll under a plastic tumbler. This only works if it's a rare thing, since I only have one such tumbler. <g>

Otherwise, you just have to count on your players to rollplay their failure appropriately. Works for me.


The Chort wrote:

I feel like quite a few could. Like perception, all Knowledge checks, sense motive... Anytime where failing a check informs the player that there's something their character missed, although the character shouldn't know that. A lot of this came up tonight, actually.

** spoiler omitted **

I think the problem is is that on top of everything a GM has to keep track of, he now has to keep track of every skill modifier for our characters and make all our rolls for us? So... On the one hand this seems like something a well designed app could handle, and that would be a cool tool for a GM to have access to. On the other hand, players are expected to take charge and be responsible for everything their character does, so I'm wondering if this needlessly encroaches on the small part of the world the players have control over?

In the end, Pathfinder isn't a video game so not everything runs as smoothly or automated as you might hope. I've made my peace with meta moments, but if your gaming group...

Having the GM roll for everything can be quite a change for some players and in the past I have known GM's to do so in special cases, to prove a point or just for style.

The two most common ways I have seen it done is the GM just rolls for everything and the second is the player rolls and provides a list of rolls the the GM and the GM uses some secondary method to make sure the rolls are accurately random.

I have played in games where the GM rolled for quite a bit of the behind the scenes skills and it provided a vastly different feel to the game (which I loved but it does add quite a bit to the GM's work load, even if they use a computer or random number generator so they are not rolling all the time.) The most impact I think it had was a horror game in which the GM did not want to break the feel of the situation by dice roll'ing all the time so used an electronic means to generate the numbers in silence and they just provided the players with the info. But I can say that some players did not like it has they felt they should know if the succeed or not on skill rolls.

MDC


Personally I really hate when GMs roll for players. It removes player agency and often bothers them that someone else is rolling for them. It's one thing when the DM makes you fail your check, it's another if you fail it with your own rolls. I firmly believe all checks involving a players skills should be in the open by the player. You can argue metagaming, but who says there was ever anything in that room you rolled Perception on anyway?

Silver Crusade

I'll only very occassionally roll for the players. I trust my players to try and not metagame but, being human, they can't do that perfectly. Sometimes it is just better if the player DOES NOT KNOW that he just failed a will save, or a Fort save, or whatever.

What I will sometimes do is say "Roll me a D20 and pass me your character sheet".

Player not rolling gets even stranger when dice rerolling mechanisms come into play


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Heretek wrote:
Personally I really hate when GMs roll for players. It removes player agency and often bothers them that someone else is rolling for them. It's one thing when the DM makes you fail your check, it's another if you fail it with your own rolls. I firmly believe all checks involving a players skills should be in the open by the player. You can argue metagaming, but who says there was ever anything in that room you rolled Perception on anyway?

How exactly does not knowing what the number on a d20 is remove even the slightest bit of player agency? The are still choosing what to do, and the result is still decided the same way.

The Exchange

pauljathome wrote:
Player not rolling gets even stranger when dice rerolling mechanisms come into play

Yeah, I ran a series of scenarios for one PFS character with trapspotting. He wanted to reroll anything below a 10 but didn't want to automatically burn his reroll. I finally settled on something that would let him reroll without letting him know for sure that a trap was coming.

Quote:

Here's the deal. At the start of the adventure I'm going to roll your trapspotting in secret. I'm going to write it down, roll again, and write a second number down. If you come across a trap where trapspotting might trigger:

1. If you've used your reroll I'll use the first number.
2. If you haven't used your reroll and the first number is below 10 I'll use the second (and your reroll is used).
3. If you haven't used your reroll and the first number is 10 or more I'll use the first number.
3a. If we used number 3, I'll roll twice again in case of another trap.

Confusing as anything, but I had to do it because I've gotten fed up with players who suddenly decide to start actively searching an area or rearranging their minis after the GM rolls a trapspotter check, but I still wanted to give him a chance to use the reroll.


Wheldrake wrote:

As a DM, I never roll for my players. I use one of two possible solutions:

1) for most passive uses of perception and sense motive, just assume the player is taking ten.

Just so you're aware, this is a HUGE penalty to the players over the standard rules.

In a typical 4 character party, assume they're 5th level. It wouldn't be unusual to have perceptions of +6, +8, +10, +12. If you have a baddie with a stealth DC of 25, your party has zero chance of finding them. If you let them roll, you'd have about an 83% chance of finding them. So you're taking a near certainty and reducing it to impossibility.]


RDM42 wrote:
How exactly does not knowing what the number on a d20 is remove even the slightest bit of player agency? The are still choosing what to do, and the result is still decided the same way.

The player needs to roll their own dice. If they fail a Perception check then they fail because they rolled poorly, not the DM rolled poorly for them.


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Heretek wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
How exactly does not knowing what the number on a d20 is remove even the slightest bit of player agency? The are still choosing what to do, and the result is still decided the same way.
The player needs to roll their own dice. If they fail a Perception check then they fail because they rolled poorly, not the DM rolled poorly for them.

The results that come from that chunk of plastic are not effected by who throws it unless someone is cheating, so the question stands. Would you be happy if the player rolled the dice by reaching over the GM screen and rolling it so they couldn't see how it landed? Actually rolling the dicephysically is a pretty minor bit of player agency at best.


Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

When I have a *huge* score in something, I let the GM know about it (in a polite fashion) so they can use the 'Take 10/Narrative' approach to a given thing.

It makes things a lot more seamless.


RDM42 wrote:
The results that come from that chunk of plastic are not effected by who throws it unless someone is cheating, so the question stands. Would you be happy if the player rolled the dice by reaching over the GM screen and rolling it so they couldn't see how it landed? Actually rolling the dicephysically is a pretty minor bit of player agency at best.

I disagree. Rolling the dice physically is a crucially important aspect. If you really don't see a difference in a player rolling a skill and a DM then I just don't know what to tell you. Taking away a players rolls is simply a terrible idea. I'm aware Paizo themselves encourage DMs to roll cettain skill checks in secret, but I simply do not.


Heretek wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
The results that come from that chunk of plastic are not effected by who throws it unless someone is cheating, so the question stands. Would you be happy if the player rolled the dice by reaching over the GM screen and rolling it so they couldn't see how it landed? Actually rolling the dicephysically is a pretty minor bit of player agency at best.
I disagree. Rolling the dice physically is a crucially important aspect. If you really don't see a difference in a player rolling a skill and a DM then I just don't know what to tell you. Taking away a players rolls is simply a terrible idea. I'm aware Paizo themselves encourage DMs to roll cettain skill checks in secret, but I simply do not.

Again: how does physically generating a random number where you have no actual control over the Actual result represent agency?


In certain scenarios, I've seen a GM ask for 10 Will saves, 10 perception checks, 10 stealth rolls, etc, and then check them off as they get used. That way the players are doing their own rolls, but they don't know when it's happening. The only drawback there is remembering special modifiers if they apply.


RDM42 wrote:
Heretek wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
The results that come from that chunk of plastic are not effected by who throws it unless someone is cheating, so the question stands. Would you be happy if the player rolled the dice by reaching over the GM screen and rolling it so they couldn't see how it landed? Actually rolling the dicephysically is a pretty minor bit of player agency at best.
I disagree. Rolling the dice physically is a crucially important aspect. If you really don't see a difference in a player rolling a skill and a DM then I just don't know what to tell you. Taking away a players rolls is simply a terrible idea. I'm aware Paizo themselves encourage DMs to roll cettain skill checks in secret, but I simply do not.
Again: how does physically generating a random number where you have no actual control over the Actual result represent agency?

Knowing when you screwed the pooch on a check and knowing when you put in a good effort. You might call that meta, but I call that feedback. I know when I made a lot of noise when trying to be sneaky (stealth). I know when I got sweat in my eyes when examining a lock (perception). If I have a mirror I know when I have my hat on backwards (disguise).

Also I have noticed over the years a strong correlation between GM rolling for characters and skill check/save failure.


RPGs have always been a shared storytelling experience. There are times when the GM should make rolls without the players' knowledge in order to serve the experience of the story. Much in the way a good movie trailer shouldn't spoil the surprises of the final film, a good secret roll will heighten the interactive experience of the game for the players by not spoiling the surprises.


I think rolling the dice is a fun aspect of the game that I would rather not take away from the players.

With that said I plan to roll certain Knowledge checks for my players in the future. It annoys me that players gain important information about a creature gleaned from the type of knowledge check they are asked to roll.


The problem with secret rolls is that there's a lot of abilities that allow you to reroll in this game and if you don't know what you just rolled, well, how are you supposed to use those abilities properly?


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Lakesidefantasy wrote:

I think rolling the dice is a fun aspect of the game that I would rather not take away from the players.

With that said I plan to roll certain Knowledge checks for my players in the future. It annoys me that players gain important information about a creature gleaned from the type of knowledge check they are asked to roll.

How will rolling for them change that?


I always let players roll to determine their character's fate. It not only gives them a sense of agency, but I find the meta-game aspect can add a lot to role-play. Sometimes hilariously.


Which is why for the majority of rolls, even most rolls, the layers do roll. They only don't where their failiure would in and of itself tell them something they don't know. Which would mostly be passive checks - checks made when you don't know as a character you need to make them. Perception against stealth against someone you aren't looking for, etcetera.


I haven't rolled for my players ever but my friend does. I think it is actually the DM's call. If he wants to do it, so be it. I prefer to let the players roll the dice. Six one way, half a dozen the other.

Here is how I handle opposed skill checks or other checks in which knowing the die result could lead to metagaming. I always know my players best skill levels anyway (ie Sorley has Perception 22, Titus has knowledge religion 20, etc). This way, I can balance things out- if I want to give the party a 50/50 chance to succeed on a check then it goes DC 30, DC32 ETC.

I TYPICALLY have two players make knowledge checks. A typical session would go like this: The party hears a rumor of a dragon in the local woods. They make knowledge checks to see what they may know of the woods and it's inhabitants:

DC 15- They know the name of the woods, its history, etc

DC18- You know there is an adult green dragon deep in the woods by the forest (FALSE)

dc22- You Know there is a Red dragon wyrm known to feed on the livestock near the farm by the local river.

One player rolls and gets a 25- I feed him the dc15 and dc22 info on a slip of paper. The other person gets a 20- I give them the DC15 info and the false DC18 info on a slip of paper. They then are at an impasse to determine who is right and who might be mistaken.

Ultimately, players knowing they succeeded at certain skills like perception, disguise, bluff, etc will NEVER unbalance my campaigns. Ever. It is perfectly fine for my players to see through an ambush, a lie, etc. As I stated before, if you want to scale their chances of succeeding, then take a look at who has the best relevant skill and adjust accordingly.


thorin001 wrote:
Lakesidefantasy wrote:

I think rolling the dice is a fun aspect of the game that I would rather not take away from the players.

With that said I plan to roll certain Knowledge checks for my players in the future. It annoys me that players gain important information about a creature gleaned from the type of knowledge check they are asked to roll.

How will rolling for them change that?

At a guess? GM has a table behind the screen, with the players' various Knowledge skills on it (along with any class abilities which may modify it.

Players ask to make a Knowledge check about whatever thing they are facing. GM rolls the dice, adds modifiers, cross-checks to creature entry and passes on details as appropriate.

I suppose in that case they players could still roll the dice, but the GM applies the appropriate modifiers "behind the screen" before feeding back the result.

Silver Crusade

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Currahee Chris wrote:


DC 15- They know the name of the woods, its history, etc

DC18- You know there is an adult green dragon deep in the woods by the forest (FALSE)

dc22- You Know there is a Red dragon wyrm known to feed on the livestock near the farm by the local river.

One player rolls and gets a 25- I feed him the dc15 and dc22 info on a slip of paper. The other person gets a 20- I give them the DC15 info and the false DC18 info on a slip of paper. They then are at an impasse

I may be just picking up on a flaw in the example, but this seems wrong to me. The player who made the 22 would probably know that there is a FALSE rumour that a green dragon lives deep in the woods. At the very least, he'd know that "almost everybody has heard of the green dragon, but only a few people know about the Red Dragon".


thorin001 wrote:
Lakesidefantasy wrote:

I think rolling the dice is a fun aspect of the game that I would rather not take away from the players.

With that said I plan to roll certain Knowledge checks for my players in the future. It annoys me that players gain important information about a creature gleaned from the type of knowledge check they are asked to roll.

How will rolling for them change that?

If I roll for them then they don't know which Knowledge skill was checked. For instance when identifying monsters if I ask my players to roll a check against their knowledge of religion then they can be pretty certain that the monster is some type of undead; however, if I make the check in secret, and they fail, then they can assume it is an undead, but it might just be some type of aberration that incorporates screaming corpses into its disgusting form.


Why bother asking the players to roll to identify a monster? Everyone typically just randomly rolls their own knowledge when encountering one and hopes they hit gold by getting the right knowledge and roll. The ranger skilled in knowledge nature sees some terrible monster that's actually undead, rolls his nature and goes "nope, definitely not nature", meanwhile the cleric rolls his religion and hopefully triumphantly is capable of informing the ranger of what it actually is.


Heretek wrote:
Why bother asking the players to roll to identify a monster? Everyone typically just randomly rolls their own knowledge when encountering one and hopes they hit gold by getting the right knowledge and roll. The ranger skilled in knowledge nature sees some terrible monster that's actually undead, rolls his nature and goes "nope, definitely not nature", meanwhile the cleric rolls his religion and hopefully triumphantly is capable of informing the ranger of what it actually is.

Perhaps I've been duped then by my players, as they typically ask me which knowledge skill to roll against.

I may try your method and next time when they ask what knowledge skill to roll against I'll tell them to guess.


Cerwin wrote:
I know that disguise checks are supposed to be rolled in secret by the GM, what other skill checks would be reasonable for a GM to roll behind the screen to prevent metagaming?

Almost everything. Anything the player doesn't actively call for themselves could be reasonably rolled by the GM if you wanted to prevent metagaming.

Practically speaking, perception checks, sense motive, appraise (though rarely used, if you get it wrong you can have a widely inaccurate price), disguise, stealth are all fair candidates to have a GM to roll in secret to prevent metagaming.

As a GM, I rarely actually roll and instead use a passive take 10 system for my players for most checks unless they call out that they're doing something. This just helps to speed up the game.

For what it's worth, though not stated in the rules at any point, I like to run knowledge checks to identify creatures with some adaptations. Like a DC 10 of the appropriate knowledge type can identify the type of creature (such as undead, construct, animal, etc). It doesn't tell you much about but does give you some basics. Just because you don't know everything about Great White Whales doesn't mean you can't know an animal when you see it.

Liberty's Edge

Heretek wrote:
RDM42 wrote:
The results that come from that chunk of plastic are not effected by who throws it unless someone is cheating, so the question stands. Would you be happy if the player rolled the dice by reaching over the GM screen and rolling it so they couldn't see how it landed? Actually rolling the dicephysically is a pretty minor bit of player agency at best.
I disagree. Rolling the dice physically is a crucially important aspect. If you really don't see a difference in a player rolling a skill and a DM then I just don't know what to tell you. Taking away a players rolls is simply a terrible idea. I'm aware Paizo themselves encourage DMs to roll cettain skill checks in secret, but I simply do not.

Dice are simply random number generators, so the person who rolls should not matter. If you think your results are affected by you rolling, either you are being deceptive about the results in some way, you are rolling them in such a way as to not truely be random (which I would call cheating), or you feel the need to have some feeling of control...if not that, then you have some unreasonable belief that cosmic karma, alignments of the planets, the arrangements of tea leaves, or some other strangeness somehow has an impact and only your hands making the roll cansomehow midigate...whatever.

I don't care about secret GM rolls either way. If a GM wants to roll every single player die roll behind their screen, that's fine. The only thing I would ask is if they would describe what the character(s) see/know based on the rolls.


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The reason GMs rolling skill checks makes no sense to me is that we all have a pretty good idea of how well we do something. The skill mods give us an idea of base competency, but the actual activities like diplomacy, disguise, stealth; an individual would have at least some notion of how well the activity went.


Do you really think it's fine for your DM to just suddenly roll your saves for you and then say, "you failed, you died"? It's just numbers right?

The sane response is of course not. You should have the freedom to roll those saves, to fail or succeed is in the die in your hands. Not the DM. You control your charcter, not the DM.


pauljathome wrote:


I may be just picking up on a flaw in the example, but this seems wrong to me. The player who made the 22 would probably know that there is a FALSE rumour that a green dragon lives deep in the woods. At the very least, he'd know that "almost everybody has heard of the green dragon, but only a few people know about the Red Dragon".

Yes, you are correct- though if I want to be really nitpicky, I could ask the player who made the 22 to make a Knowledge local to see if he knew of the false rumor :)

My observation is that sort of thing actually plays itself out with good roleplaying. I will freely admit it isn't an errorproof system but it has led to some really excellent roleplaying situations where the dice roles made the players think things through and formulate a plan. I gave an example for purposes of this post- when crafting an adventure, I have more time to think it through and make it flow a bit better. What usually happens is if 2 or more players are at an impasse then they usually ask to see if there is a secondary skill they can check to glean some further truth from the initial roll. I do my best to try and make it feel as close to an actual real life situation as possible. I am happy that this forces players to roleplay key information they come across and how they wish to interpret it and come up with a course of action. There have been some really heated discussions at times between my eldest son (Age 20) and my daughter (age16) because one gets one result and the other gets the other and mayhem breaks out!!! lol

Sometimes there are situations where one player "fails" the roll and the other succeeds but because the "failing " player is a leader type of the group then the rest of the party takes pause before they just dismiss their insight. Heck, it could be a situation where there is a red AND a green dragon in those woods!!! :) :)

Thank you for your post- I was hoping to get some challenges on how I handle these types of checks as I want to make it as fair and balanced for my players as possible.

Liberty's Edge

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Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Companion, Maps, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Create Mr. Pitt wrote:
The reason GMs rolling skill checks makes no sense to me is that we all have a pretty good idea of how well we do something. The skill mods give us an idea of base competency, but the actual activities like diplomacy, disguise, stealth; an individual would have at least some notion of how well the activity went.

Think about things like perception, sense motive, or appraise where you aren't supposed to know that you failed... or possibly even that there was anything to check.

Let's say you've got a 15 sense motive skill, but rolled a 1. Meanwhile, another party member only has a 5 sense motive skill, but rolled a 20. The GM tells you that you think the guard is telling the truth, but the other party member thinks he is lying. Just from the math you can figure out that the other party member must be right... even though your character is much better at the skill.

It is hard to build intrigue if the players know what is what from the math. Much more exciting if they aren't certain, and thus paying extra attention to everything the guard does - trying to figure out if he is betraying them or not.

That said, for players who like to roll dice themselves there is a simple fix. The GM rolls a die in secret and offsets all player rolls by that amount (wrapping around to 1 at 21+). So... if the GM rolls a 13 then player rolls of 5, 10, and 18 become 18, 3, and 11. Players can still choose to use 'reroll powers' and the like if they want, but they don't get any information they shouldn't have from the numbers.


Heretek wrote:

Do you really think it's fine for your DM to just suddenly roll your saves for you and then say, "you failed, you died"? It's just numbers right?

The sane response is of course not. You should have the freedom to roll those saves, to fail or succeed is in the die in your hands. Not the DM. You control your charcter, not the DM.

If you distrust your dm that much you really need to find a new one.


Heretek wrote:

Do you really think it's fine for your DM to just suddenly roll your saves for you and then say, "you failed, you died"? It's just numbers right?

The sane response is of course not. You should have the freedom to roll those saves, to fail or succeed is in the die in your hands. Not the DM. You control your charcter, not the DM.

I think the GM rolls for everything is a specific style of RP'ing and is not for everyone. But I have often found it to be a nice change from the standard game. But having said that would I prefer to play in a limited or no dice game all of the time? I do not think so but it really depends on the game and GM.

Trap Spotting/Disable Device:
When I play this type of PC I generally tell the GM that I am going to check 3 times for each situation, unless there is a time factor. Yes this will take longer in game time but if you think about it what careful person would not do this.
Also some GM's I have played with in the past have you roll a separate roll for each trap, so no matter how high the fist roll was you could still miss the others.
MDC


Create Mr. Pitt wrote:
The reason GMs rolling skill checks makes no sense to me is that we all have a pretty good idea of how well we do something. The skill mods give us an idea of base competency, but the actual activities like diplomacy, disguise, stealth; an individual would have at least some notion of how well the activity went.

That makes no sense to me. For instance, your character might think the disguise looks great when in fact it's only so-so.


If you are terribly concerned about who generates the random number, you are either cheating or delusional.

As to when the player should receive feedback on what number was rolled, or even that a number needed to be rolled I think it depends.

Almost always when a player is actively doing something I just have the roll it (the exceptions being things like disguise.) For situations where they don't ask for something, as passive action, I usually assume take ten on there skill. Situations that trigger a skill roll with immediate consequence, like perception for surprise, I have them roll.


I prefer to let the players roll, following the same reasoning as Mr. Pitt.

Liberty's Edge

Heretek wrote:

Do you really think it's fine for your DM to just suddenly roll your saves for you and then say, "you failed, you died"? It's just numbers right?

The sane response is of course not. You should have the freedom to roll those saves, to fail or succeed is in the die in your hands. Not the DM. You control your charcter, not the DM.

I see, so by your logic it is totally ok for the GM to roll a To Hit roll and say "You are hit, you die" because he rolls for the monsters.

If you think that this is what people are saying, then you are missing the point of the conversation. A player can roll a die no better than a GM.

A good GM can decribe the scene/situation/whatever based on what the numbers say instead of actually talking numbers.

Tell me, when is the last time you looked for something in real life and knew what the number on the die was for your Perception check? Oh, wait, real life doesn't work like that. I don't see any die rolls. :)


I know I like to roll stuff as a player, but it honestly sucks when you are trying not to meta/power game.

I got a 2 on my knowledge roll and I'm only getting like a +5 because I'm level 2 or something? Yeah, its hard not to do something with that info.

Having two players know two different things they ACTUALLY believe are true because of dice rolls is fun. Trusting the party wizard because he would normally know stuff about this but he rolled a 1 and his other stuff wasn't enough to make the DC check but the Paladin rolled a nat 20 and had a point or two to make the dc be the "right" one.

I feel like this Wizard/Pally fight would add a lot more into campaign that might not be there otherwise because "we know how is right".


I think we can generally make assessments of how well we examined something, disguised ourselves. I mean in the real world it depends on how perceptive we are; but defaulting to not knowing at all makes no sense.

We still may not know how well something has stealthed against us or how well something is hidden, but we can still have a general idea of exactly how well we accomplish tasks with skills.


Heretek wrote:
If you really don't see a difference in a player rolling a skill and a DM then I just don't know what to tell you.

Tell us the difference. Give us some actual reasons.

Heretek wrote:
You control your charcter, not the DM.

And this is where you are objectively wrong. The dice (you could call it chance or fate if you like) controls the character every time you roll something. When you get hit by a Create Pit, you do not control whether your character moves out of the way, and neither does the GM. The character's fate is in this moment dictated soley by the little plastic random number generator you are currently throwing on the table.

Also, no one was suggesting GMs rolling saves. The thread is about skill checks.

Liberty's Edge

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Create Mr. Pitt wrote:
We still may not know how well something has stealthed against us or how well something is hidden, but we can still have a general idea of exactly how well we accomplish tasks with skills.

Again, there are specific cases where a failure is supposed to make you believe you succeeded... such as a really bad Appraise check to determine something's value or Sense Motive check to detect hidden messages. If you, the player, know you botched the roll then the fact that your character supposedly thinks they succeeded is much less compelling.

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