Actions and consequences - debate over how much is too much


Advice

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Quintain wrote:

While there are some examples of direct divine retribution in canon, I see that sort of thing in a game (vs being part of "historical record") is more of GM Ex Machina and far too heavy handed a response to what is perceived as player misbehavior and is too easily perceived as punishment vs a cooperation play environment.

Which is why I would recommend avoiding it.

A DM has no authority. It is as much the player's game as it is the GMs. The players have a role and so does the GM.

A good and cooperative game environment is one where all participants are satisfied.

An environment wherein the GM says "I'm the GM, suck it". Is one where he's going to be GMing an empty table.

The problem with your "environment where all participant are satisfied" is that is not something always possible. There are always times when players disagree on how some points of the game should be managed and will stand their ground no matter the amount of efforts you attempt to find a middle ground. (Which is the case of the OP's table, visibly)

At that time, someone have to play the arbiter, and the guy who's in charge of it is the GM. That's why he -has- autority, he just -must- have it, or the first occurrence of that kind of situation will immediately sink the game.

It can't be anyone else at the table to do it, too, because the one disatisfied may leave... and while a table can afford to lose a player, it cannot afford to lose its GM.
You can replace a player that left, but the GM have to stay, and thus, in case of a unsolvable disagreement, the option to keep is the one that the GM agrees to, for the sake of everyone else.
If the GM becomes unhappy with the game, the game itself is doomed.

-----------

Also, you must not forget an important point: the GM workload.
A GM spend a lot of time preparing a game. Sometimes in a campaign, his total work made between the game sessions can total to more than a thousand hours!

The GM is a kind player who is wishing to do that work so the other players can just put their feet under the table and just profit of it for free... but that doesn't mean on of those players has the right to add to his workload by straying too much afar from the prepared scenario in an unrelated way.

A GM is not a slave! That's not because a player want to go toward an unexpected and unrelated direction of what the campaign was about that the GM have to assent and suck up the extra work it would imply without saying a word.
So, yes, a GM has also the full autority to refuse to stray too far from the prepared story, as he's the only one who will do the hard part it will imply if he assent to something like that.

At some point, the autority of a GM is not even a problem of rules... it's something someone deserve from the people who do nothing but profit from the work he does.
When you go diner at someone house, you don't suddenly ask for a dessert he didn't prepare because you want to, and use a word like "cooperation" to justify your claim, when all you did is sit your butt and eat.

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TL;DR : For many reasons, a DM's table is like an host's house: players are only invitees, here... and while the host want certainly them to be happy if possible, the invitees hold no real power at all within their host's house.


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Here's how I would have handled this:

"You can do this course of action, but if you do so your character basically becomes an NPC. Such actions will anger Orcus to the point of hunting you down until death. There will be no escape, your character will eventually be captured, tortured, killed, and the soul destroyed for such actions. As this will quickly take you in a rapidly different direction from the party we wont spend party time on it. I can write out a fully detailed chain of events if you so like, but ultimately this character will cease to be if you continue on this course."


Omnius wrote:
Zhayne wrote:
Unless the GM decides otherwise. He has the power, if not the responsibility, to do that, what's written in the campaign setting books be damned.
Verisimilitude is important. To have Orcus take direct action in Sigil breaks the setting

Unless you decided in advance that this is not the case, because you can do that.

Not necessarily saying one should. I just have a thing about 'this is the setting, that's what it says, and I'm not allowed to change it' mentality. I'm reminded of the 'you can't do that' snit a player threw when I offed Elminster in an FR game way back before I went to almost always doing a home-made world.


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Zhayne wrote:

Unless you decided in advance that this is not the case, because you can do that.

Not necessarily saying one should. I just have a thing about 'this is the setting, that's what it says, and I'm not allowed to change it' mentality. I'm reminded of the 'you can't do that' snit a player threw when I offed Elminster in an FR game way back before I went to almost always doing a home-made world.

Except if you're changing fundamental assumptions of the setting, that's something to discuss with your players beforehand; their characters are in that world, after all, and if history is different, likely have a stake in it. Deities being able to directly act on Sigil isn't offing an obnoxious NPC; it's altering something as fundamental to the setting as gravity. It fundamentally changes what Sigil even is.

Lashing out at a player with direct divine action in Sigil without it being some Big Deal thing the deity has figured out how to do that usurps the order of the world or discussing the fact that Sigil works differently in this game beforehand is as much of a nonsensical ass pull (regardless of how long it's been in your head) as...

Player: "I step outside the inn."

GM: "You fall up, thousands of miles into the sky. What, you thought gravity worked normally in Faerun?"

This is not a, "You can't change things." You can, but you need to keep your players in the loop as to what setting they're in. If Elminster is dead, or even just "mysteriously gone," that's a thing that's known in the setting.

I'm in a Star Wars game right now where the GM changed a bunch of stuff because canon is so crowded it's hard to fit a game in it where you're actually galaxy-scale protagonists. But the GM was up front that he's changing stuff, and open about what a lot of the big changes are and a notification that he's playing fast and loose with the canon, and when someone brings up something from existing canon, that's a discussion, not the GM pulling the rug out from under us.


MerlinCross wrote:

Side question: wait he disses Bards and..., Plays a Bard?

Logic? Even if his main class is Cleric, what kind of screwy round about logic is that?

He disses the “generic” bard, the minstrel variety who buffs his allies and such. His bard was the Courtier archetype, basically focused on social skills. It was just a 2 level dip (to get the class skills, bard spells and so on), the rest all went on Cleric.


The odd thing to me is that Bard 2/Cleric 10 doesn't seem anywhere remotely as powerful as Cleric 12, since the former doesn't even get 6th level spells.

What is something that doesn't have 6th level spells doing thinking it can take on demon princes?


Claxon wrote:

Here's how I would have handled this:

"You can do this course of action, but if you do so your character basically becomes an NPC. Such actions will anger Orcus to the point of hunting you down until death. There will be no escape, your character will eventually be captured, tortured, killed, and the soul destroyed for such actions. As this will quickly take you in a rapidly different direction from the party we wont spend party time on it. I can write out a fully detailed chain of events if you so like, but ultimately this character will cease to be if you continue on this course."

Trust me we had these conversations, but he isn’t the type other player who would learn a lesson doing it that way.

He single handedly caused the party to abandon him. We didn’t get to actually see what happened with Orcus and his character because he quit.

Funnily enough not over this, but because he found what he thought was a game breaking exploit (see “Catch Free Efreeti Wishes?” thread) relying on a high UMD, scrolls of Planar Binding and Greater Planar Binding to summon a Contract Devil and an Efreeti.

He would offer absolutely nothing as compensation to either, “beating them down” with his high charisma and circlet of persuasion. He wanted the Contract Devil to create the mother of all legally binding contracts to stop the Efreeti from coming up with ANY attempts to twist the three wishes he would want.

He disagreed that they would try and screw him over (they would be mad at what he tried to do and was doing to them), that they would want revenge afterward or that Devils or Efreeti wouldn’t come knocking his door down along with Orcus’ minions, etc.

We didn’t even get to resolve that, for the price of 4500 gold he felt he had a legitimate way to get catch free wishes. This was going to be how he thought he would get out of it, eventsully of course as he wanted to use the wishes to get free powerful items and so on first.

He was going to use this method constantly to reach level 20, get +5 inherent bonuses to all stats, to grant his Vampire Cohort immunity to sunlight, to get himself a special Portable
Hole only he could access, to get himself a Mummified Griffin mount that was loyal to him alone, and grant other items and so on. Once all that was done he would wish up some way out of the situation. He genuinely wanted to abuse the hell out of this loophole he felt he found. It was NEVER going to fly, all Wishes would be tainted in some way I said th Contract Devil isn’t flawless, plus he’s mad, so there’s bound to be gaps here and there not to mention the Efreeti have done this dance before for ages, people have tried to cheat them again and again, and there is consequences.


He sounds like he's the kind of guy who discovers a loophole online, and then wants to act like his character is the only person in the history of his respective Pathfinder universe to think of that line of action.


I'd have let the wishes thing happen, just to screw him over as harshly as possible. After someone ignores your warning, all you can do is let events play out.

For instance, the contract devil could have mentioned that the price was 1/3rd of the character's soul. Once they agreed and made their wishes, they would find out that it was 1/3rd of their soul per wish. Fine print and all that. What, they don't have skill points in profession barrister or linguistics? Too bad. The Devil now owns the character's soul, and uses that leverage to force him to break the binding circle. Upon which time the Efreet and the Devil are no longer bound, the Efreet Plane shifts out, and then has his pals plane shift back in to murder the PC.

In terms of Orcus? His mace is known to be passed onto his favorite subjects. Even that is perhaps too direct, there are plenty of ways for a demon who is so powerful that they grant domains and function as a deity to get revenge on a Cleric. Especially if he can barter for the cleric's soul from a particular contract devil.


Redelia wrote:
I would say that part of the agreement between deities is that they can do whatever they want with their own followers.

This.

Deities have absolute authority over their priests.

No other god will intervene without a damned good reason. (Pun intended.)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

ID and his group did the right thing - the guy should have been mature, obviously wasn't and had a history of being disruptive. It hurt the game and he didn't learn his lesson. They showed him the door. That was the correct action.

Now let's say that the guy (who in this example is a normally adjusted D&D player who just happened to have a CE character) was momentarily possessed by Pazuzu when he's at the table, and he, while being possessed by Pazuzu, directed his character to do that action. Then he came to and was like, 'OMG! PAZUZU MADE ME DO IT!'

What's the proper way to handle that character in game?

In my opinion, there's one thing which can save the character. The character is in Sigil, and thus is essentially able to escape the long and terrible reach of Orcus.

But... he can't leave Sigil. Not unless he's bound for the upper planes, or maybe somewhere over on the Planes of Law. Even then... he's a hunted man. The Prime Material is right out.

I would say that, sadly, at best, the character has to become an NPC until, somehow, somewhere, Orcus is appeased. Otherwise, he's a lodestone around the neck of the party, which just can't be allowed on the table for everyone else's enjoyment.


Quote:


Funnily enough not over this, but because he found what he thought was a game breaking exploit (see “Catch Free Efreeti Wishes?” thread) relying on a high UMD, scrolls of Planar Binding and Greater Planar Binding to summon a Contract Devil and an Efreeti.

Can someone explain this loophole?


Quintain wrote:
Quote:


Funnily enough not over this, but because he found what he thought was a game breaking exploit (see “Catch Free Efreeti Wishes?” thread) relying on a high UMD, scrolls of Planar Binding and Greater Planar Binding to summon a Contract Devil and an Efreeti.
Can someone explain this loophole?

... asking for a friend ...

I assume it's detailed in this thread. Considering what a clustercuss this current thread is though, I'm a little afraid to open that one and take a look.


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Moonheart wrote:


The problem with your "environment where all participant are satisfied" is that is not something always possible. There are always times when players disagree on how some points of the game should be managed and will stand their ground no matter the amount of efforts you attempt to find a middle ground. (Which is the case of the OP's table, visibly)

At that time, someone have to play the arbiter, and the guy who's in charge of it is the GM. That's why he -has- autority, he just -must- have it, or the first occurrence of that kind of situation will immediately sink the game.

It can't be anyone else at the table to do it, too, because the one disatisfied may leave... and while a table can afford to lose a player, it cannot afford to lose its GM.
You can replace a player that left, but the GM have to stay, and thus, in case of a unsolvable disagreement, the option to keep is the one that the GM agrees to, for the sake of everyone else.
If the GM becomes unhappy with the game, the game itself is doomed.

-----------

Also, you must not forget an important point: the GM workload.
A GM spend a lot of time preparing a game. Sometimes in a campaign, his total work made between the game sessions can total to more than a thousand hours!

The GM is a kind player who is wishing to do that work...

I can tell you from experience that "losing the GM" is not even close to the death knell of a campaign. It has happened in the campaign that I'm currently playing in -- someone else familiar with the setting and that was a player under the former GM simply took over running the game. Players come and go, and so to GMs. All of them are replaceable. Sometimes GMs burn out and sometimes players want to GM. As long as everyone is flexible in their role, everyone goes home happy.

As for "all participants are satisfied not being always possible" -- of course. But it is still a goal that should be aspired to.

'Cuz you gotta have goals :P


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

And even if nobody knows enough about the old GM's setting to take over directly, you can always have some supernatural event move the party off to some other setting that the new GM is more familiar with.


RumpinRufus wrote:
Quintain wrote:
Quote:


Funnily enough not over this, but because he found what he thought was a game breaking exploit (see “Catch Free Efreeti Wishes?” thread) relying on a high UMD, scrolls of Planar Binding and Greater Planar Binding to summon a Contract Devil and an Efreeti.
Can someone explain this loophole?

... asking for a friend ...

I assume it's detailed in this thread. Considering what a clustercuss this current thread is though, I'm a little afraid to open that one and take a look.

It really isn't much of a loophole. he's trying to use a contract devil as a contract negotiator when crafting wishes from a Genie.

It's an interesting premise. His wishes weren't really outside the bounds of standard game mechanice -- except maybe granting a template -- which can't be done with polymorph magic -- but can be done via Occult ceremonies.

Personally, I'd let him role play it out. And as a GM, I'd have the contract devil put a bad loophole in the wish and bargain with the Genie to give the devil a wish for giving him info on how to exploit the loophole.

I've done essentially what he wanted to do without the contract devil part. That's largely wasted effort.


PossibleCabbage wrote:

The odd thing to me is that Bard 2/Cleric 10 doesn't seem anywhere remotely as powerful as Cleric 12, since the former doesn't even get 6th level spells.

What is something that doesn't have 6th level spells doing thinking it can take on demon princes?

Probably charm some other demons into helping with that sweet Dipolmacy skill he has, or expect whatever new demon deity he worships to bail him out cause I mean he's him. Why should they bail him out? (This is utter sarcasm but I can see this being the player's line of thinking after two topics about him)


To go a bit against the grain, I think Orcus would just revoke his powers and leave him alone. Think of it this way: Orcus has already lost a CR 12 asset because this guy went rogue. To kill him and his friends, he would need to commit 16+CR worth of forces, and he may still fail. Heck, even if he knows that this guy's friends won't help him; He still needs to risk a CR 12+ creature to have a 50% chance of punishing this guy. That just feels like a waste of resources.

Sure, Orcus has tons of demons, but throwing a fit whenever someone desecrates a random altar is a recipe for losing all you minions to bad luck.

If I was Orcus, I'd just make it known that killing this guy would earn my favor. Then I'd tell this guy's party members that I would give them three wishes each if they bring me his head :)


Knight Magenta wrote:

To go a bit against the grain, I think Orcus would just revoke his powers and leave him alone. Think of it this way: Orcus has already lost a CR 12 asset because this guy went rogue. To kill him and his friends, he would need to commit 16+CR worth of forces, and he may still fail. Heck, even if he knows that this guy's friends won't help him; He still needs to risk a CR 12+ creature to have a 50% chance of punishing this guy. That just feels like a waste of resources.

Sure, Orcus has tons of demons, but throwing a fit whenever someone desecrates a random altar is a recipe for losing all you minions to bad luck.

If I was Orcus, I'd just make it known that killing this guy would earn my favor. Then I'd tell this guy's party members that I would give them three wishes each if they bring me his head :)

so dont risk a low cr creature..... if orcus knows that his friends wont help him why would he not still send a cr 18+ creature after him and have it be a guaranteed death which is what he is after


This isn't just someone desecrating a random altar. This is one of his most powerful servants betraying him. You think Orcus is going to just take that sitting down?

Silver Crusade

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Perhaps, but I'm looking at it as if Orcus was a mob boss or similar underworld figure. Look at the motivations of the Chaotic Evil, they respect strength. If Orcus or ANY demon lord just allows a former worshipper to insult him like that, that is an insult that has to be answered. No matter the cost. And there really isn't much of a cost, Orcus counts a number of powerful wizards among his worshippers, they function as troop transport to summon in a bunch of demons, then teleport out, limited risk to the wizards, and the demons just reform in the Abyss about 30 seconds after being dispatched on the prime material. And really, that cleric was a CR 12 asset, but at best I'ld put him at CR 7-8 after losing his cleric powers, until he can arrange a new patron, which may take him some time.


If Orcus is as a big a deal as indicated.. if he's truly 'nearly a god'... then I don't think he would really care about a statue. The petty squabbling of ants are beneath him. This is how I would have handled it.

1) Orcus don't care. As such... you are absolutely NOT a cleric of his anymore and are cut off from his power. There's chaotic... and there's 'desecrate my own god's temple' chaotic. He's out of the flock. Retrain as a different class or try to sign up with antoher deity.. but Orcus woudn't allow him back.

2) While the PC may be beneath the notice of thier god... they are NOT below the notice of the Orcus followers. The priest who was embarassed and the clergy that is devout... would never ever forgive him. There would be rewards, contracts, all kinds of assassins on his tail... until he was dead or had made it too costly to kill him.

In this situation... it's not ORCUS who is doing the smiting... it's the people in the temple that betrayed.

Because... let's be honest. Who HASN'T destroyed a temple to an evil god without getting immediately smited. Whether they don't care, or don't have the power to take direct action is debatable... but evil gods rarely just smite desecraters. It's just part of adventuring. The fact that it was the PC's OWN god... is franky insane, and the only thing that I think might get his attention... but even then I would have it work through the mortal agents without just Orcus senidn the death demons personally.


phantom1592 wrote:

If Orcus is as a big a deal as indicated.. if he's truly 'nearly a god'... then I don't think he would really care about a statue. The petty squabbling of ants are beneath him. This is how I would have handled it.

Orcus is a demon lord of wrath, specifically. In his description he's generally hands off, but not so hands off that if you open a gate and speak his name through it he wont hop off the throne step through and if you didn't have a good reason slay you and turn you into an undead servant.

Orcus is the kid who burns ants with a magnifying glass.


Ryan Freire wrote:
phantom1592 wrote:

If Orcus is as a big a deal as indicated.. if he's truly 'nearly a god'... then I don't think he would really care about a statue. The petty squabbling of ants are beneath him. This is how I would have handled it.

Orcus is a demon lord of wrath, specifically. In his description he's generally hands off, but not so hands off that if you open a gate and speak his name through it he wont hop off the throne step through and if you didn't have a good reason slay you and turn you into an undead servant.

Orcus is the kid who burns ants with a magnifying glass.

So basically, as long as the PC doesn't personally open the gate and mock him... he should be okay.

And if the priest and congregation open a portal to tap his power, he's just as likely to destroy them for bugging him about a statue losing it's head... and enjoy the distraction.

I would play it up like the drizzt books where the Dark elves kill each other over gets the honor killing the heretic that Lolth hates so much... when in reality she's usually sitting back and laughing at the chaos. He lives.. he dies... he's broken... whatever. He's a mortal and a minor inconvience. But she doesn't raise armies of demons to personally hunt down the heretics... that's what her mortal agents do to gain favor with her...


(Just giving this a bump, pasting from the previous page to give context to those here, it sounds like this context is missing from those debating on this page)

The player knew fine well Orcus could not directly do anything in Sigil, but a huge element to the sheer gravity of what they did is that In Sigil, all the Evil God's are housed in one temple in Sigil, Good God's in another, all kept in check by the Lady Of Pain.

He did it because the other God's (and enemies of Orcus) would SEE what he did, and Orcus isnt the kind of God would stand aside and allow a slight of this magnitude by what is essentially one of his highest level Clerics (Lv 12 Cleric / Lv 2 Bard) who for all intensive purposes wanted to get revenge in the most public of forums.

Needless to say, I warned him multiple times over but his answers never changed. He literally quoted Orcus as only being equipped with his +6 Mace and quoted his statistics as he believed them to be, saying not now but down the road he was certain somehow he could dethrone him and take his spot. All of this done infront of the faithful of the Diety who were all shaken by what happened. He used that shock to escape rapidly after his adamantine sword took the head off the statue, even though the mob chased him he had already planned a contrived escape via Invisibility and Expeditious Retreat, as well as literally paying some poor schmuck to dress up like him and loiter nearby who was the first target they went after.

It was purely the discussion of what Orcus COULD do, that set him off. He wasn't some pleb to the God, he was someone of significance, furthermore he showed Orcus up infront of his enemies and other evil Dieties and lost Orcus face, essentially made him look like a laughing stock (his whole point).

He believed only CR appropiate "agents" should come after him, and while I stressed this may be the case to start with, the sheer gravitas of what he did merited a more harsher response and he could be very well facing hit squads of Demons or Undead tooled specifically to his demise or to bring him in, make an example of him so this kind of behaviour was never repeated.

His meglomania knew no bounds - he planned to aim for Lichdom down the road or Vampirism if that failed once he gained more levels and he already had a Vampire Cohort (who was pretty weak but a Vampire all the same) who he planned to use to create more thralls ontop of his extensive Leadership following.

But this is NOT an isolated behaviour of this player, there was instances in the past where he frequently acted without thinking it through and bemoaned the fallout of said consequences. Here's a few examples.

- NPC quest giver asks the party to save their mother who is cursed into an undead state. The players managed to have the curse lifted but a side effect of the curse was she aged horribly. The character felt "she was going to Hell anyway" because she killed people as an undead and offered to "save her" by turning her undead again. When the NPC quest giver was understandably upset by this offer he acted like it was the most confusing response ever and wondered why the party was groaning and shaking their heads. Some good Diplomacy on the Party Leaders part managed to massage the situation into something salvageable.
- He went into a small town and boasted about "summoning a few Succubi and opening a brothel" openly and loudly, "I can get all their coin and souls, it's a brilliant idea" he also said loudly. News reached the towns mayor who contacted the Party Leader, who was deeply concerned by his characters claim. He didn't even deny it when confronted, he wanted to kill the Mayor for "causing him trouble" with the party. It took alot for the party to fix his mess there again.
- The party were fighting a rather powerful etheral undead, a variant of a Banshee and whole two party members were in really bad shape in the fight he literally tried to stop the party fighting it because "he wanted it". He planned to control it somehow he said and didn't want them killing it. His actions nearly caused two party member deaths as people had to fight around him and he made their lives difficult. He bemoaned constantly at the loss of his "pet" he wanted.
- He was obsessed with Undead, so much so he advertised quite openly that he wanted to bring back another party members dead love (which was part of his back story)....as a Mummy. "If he loved her he would accept her for what she is" he argued. I explained that would not go down well and the player whose love was to be brought back as his horrid undead mess was supposed to be grateful for the suggestion. They were not. The player constantly talked about how "ungrateful" They were and repeatedly preached how Undead are better than being living any day of the week in his opinion.

Those are just some examples. We have been more than tolerant and understanding of him and it's because he's a friend we put up with it. But he wrote himself out of the game arguing about a "loophole" he found (mentioned in another thread) that he found to get catch free wishes from an Efreeti for 4.5 thousand gold using a Contract Devil he would.bind to draft a contract to protect him from any possible twisting of the wishes, which was never going to fly. He quit for good this time because he wasn't getting his way to exploit that particular loophole (It's all explained on that other thread)

In essence he knew Orcus can’t touch him directly in Sigil because the Lady Of Pain tolerates no direct meddling of any Gods there, but his agents certainly could act.


To reiterate, get rid of him.
He is obviously not interested in being part of a group, either in game or OOC, he is at best a nuisance and at worst a royal pain, and logic and appeals to cooperation don't work on him. Better to accept some short-term unpleasantness than let this go on.


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We already did lol

That’s why I’m surprised this thread is still ongoing. People are debating what authority or power Orcus has over one of his (now former) Clerics.


Quintain wrote:

I can tell you from experience that "losing the GM" is not even close to the death knell of a campaign. It has happened in the campaign that I'm currently playing in -- someone else familiar with the setting and that was a player under the former GM simply took over running the game. Players come and go, and so to GMs. All of them are replaceable. Sometimes GMs burn out and sometimes players want to GM. As long as everyone is flexible in their role, everyone goes home happy.

As for "all participants are satisfied not being always possible" -- of course. But it is still a goal that should be aspired to.

'Cuz you gotta have goals :P

Even so, that doesn't, change the main point that is you are wrong saying a GM holds no autority.

The GM role is a role of autority by design. "GM" litteraly means "the guy who decide everything about how the world around the PCs works".
Having to try to not misuse this autority is nothing like having no autority in the very first place.

Yes, cooperation is a goal of any good GM... but trying to no misuse autority is nothing like to have no autority.
A good GM will try to run things smoothly and find a middle ground when a player first cause trouble, but a good GM will also know when he must play it hard and say "now, suck it or leave" to a player who's totaly unwilling to cooperate with the other people at the table, and he holds the power do to it.


Essentially, it boils down to this:

This particular player is causing problems at your table. You've tried to resolve in-game shenanigans with in-game consequences. However, not all of the shenanigans involve in-game or in-character actions. I think it's best for you and your group to allow this player to find another game that suits his particular preference of gaming style. That probably means that he needs to be invited to leave the game. If he's upset about that, and from the sound of things, he likely will be, then maybe he needs to examine his own behaviours. You mentioned that he's been kicked out of other groups before. Maybe his play-style just doesn't gel with yours, and if that's the case, there's nothing inherently wrong with that.

But, having said that, your other players (such as Princess of Canada) deserve to be able to enjoy their gaming experience as well. You're there for the enjoyment of everyone at the table (including yourself), and if this player is impairing your collective ability to enjoy gaming, then it's time for that player to move on.

Best wishes!


ID-TheDemonOfElru wrote:

We already did lol

That’s why I’m surprised this thread is still ongoing. People are debating what authority or power Orcus has over one of his (now former) Clerics.

Sorry, I should have added...

Orcus has as much or as little authority over his followers, clerics, or minions as the GM sees fit. The source material is a guideline, not a strait-jacket, and experienced players ought to know this. So long as no established rules are being broken, the GM gets to determine how much and what kind of agency NPCs have.


What I'm curious about is the level of power that poeple ascribe to Orcus -- he's *almost* a deity -- but still just a Demon Lord in power (Mythic 10 Rank).

As far as I'm aware, there is no power ascribed to knowing what happens to all symbols of their faith that is available.

I think that in the rush to punish actions of blasphemy, GMs ascribe power to beings above their actual power level.

Quote:


Even so, that doesn't, change the main point that is you are wrong saying a GM holds no autority.

There is no "authority" that a GM can enforce that doesn't have to be voluntarily accepted by the player. This is a cooperative game, not an antagonistic one.

A player or GM can always leave the table.


Quintain wrote:

What I'm curious about is the level of power that poeple ascribe to Orcus -- he's *almost* a deity -- but still just a Demon Lord in power (Mythic 10 Rank).

As far as I'm aware, there is no power ascribed to knowing what happens to all symbols of their faith that is available.

I think that in the rush to punish actions of blasphemy, GMs ascribe power to beings above their actual power level.

Given the context that the statue was desecrated in full view of the priests and congregation of that temple, it would be reasonable to assume that Orcus' priests and congregants would have prayed for guidance. I've been to many a church in real life where congregants pray for guidance during service on any number of issues brought up before the church. Orcus may only be a demon lord, but he still receives and has the capacity to answer prayers. Something like this may very well catch his attention.

Of course, in fantasy tabletop RPGs such as Pathfinder, Orcus' priests may simply summon one of Orcus' servitors and pass the message along directly rather than hoping that Orcus' mental e-mail pings him and he pays attention to that particular message. This isn't something that must be explicitly stated to players because it's a reasonable thing to assume happening behind the scenes.

Is Orcus himself showing up riding twin bolts of lightning, swinging his new and improved +7 keen flaming icy hunstman (with special death curse) mace with fifty heavily armed demons in his wake and singing Viking Death Machine? This is probably not going to happen. Could Orcus send a couple of servitors to "deal with this problem"? That's completely reasonable. Should those servitors fail, could he send in higher level servitors? Sure. Should they fail, could he take personal interest? Possibly. It all depends on what kind of agency the GM gives to this fictional hellspawned multi-dimensional necrophiliac mob boss.

Best wishes!


ID-TheDemonOfElru wrote:

We already did lol

That’s why I’m surprised this thread is still ongoing. People are debating what authority or power Orcus has over one of his (now former) Clerics.

Well, people here certainly love to discuss and argue. (But that is not meant as a negative thing, I do like it too.)


From reading about the player in question from the OP I'm not concerned about anything in game. Threatening to harm someone in real life because 'they might fall in love' with an imaginary being the player has an unhealthy obsession with and a distinct lack of social skills is the problem.

I'd be more concerned about the player 'going postal'.


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Quintain wrote:
There is no "authority" that a GM can enforce that doesn't have to be voluntarily accepted by the player.

On the other hand, if players don't accept any of the GMs authority, no game happens. If they argue over every single action every single NPC does, nothing happens. Same if they argue over every bit of physics or metaphysics. And since - by both my personal experience and from what I've read of others - GMs are harder to come by than players, in a case of conflict the GM tends to hold more power due to having better leverage.


Quintain wrote:

What I'm curious about is the level of power that poeple ascribe to Orcus -- he's *almost* a deity -- but still just a Demon Lord in power (Mythic 10 Rank).

As far as I'm aware, there is no power ascribed to knowing what happens to all symbols of their faith that is available.

I think that in the rush to punish actions of blasphemy, GMs ascribe power to beings above their actual power level.

Quote:


Even so, that doesn't, change the main point that is you are wrong saying a GM holds no autority.

There is no "authority" that a GM can enforce that doesn't have to be voluntarily accepted by the player. This is a cooperative game, not an antagonistic one.

A player or GM can always leave the table.

A good gm is always more valuable than a player though. GM's in areas where their game is played almost never lack for a group, the reverse cant be said for players.

Paizo Employee Customer Service Representative

Removed a post. Please remember that you can disagree with other posters without resorting to personal insults.


Spacelard wrote:

From reading about the player in question from the OP I'm not concerned about anything in game. Threatening to harm someone in real life because 'they might fall in love' with an imaginary being the player has an unhealthy obsession with and a distinct lack of social skills is the problem.

I'd be more concerned about the player 'going postal'.

This. It's been repeatedly mentioned that he was a long-time friend. Was his behavior this erratic in other areas of life? Sounds like the dude legitimately needs help.

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