Punishing Bad RP


Advice

101 to 150 of 411 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | next > last >>

4 people marked this as a favorite.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
born_of_fire wrote:
Not really, no. People are talking about players like one I have in my group who is a very gregarious fellow. He could likely sell ice to penguins but never invests in the diplomacy skill. When it comes time to move around the battle field without provoking AoO’s, this fellow says “I roll acrobatics” and the number on the die determines his success. When it comes time to get a deal from a local merchant, this fellow spends 5 minutes IC chatting up the merchant, asking after his family, discussing local events, getting the merchant to talk about himself and generally flattering him before rolling the diplomacy. His success is influenced, if not outright determined by the quality of the conversation rather than result of the diplomacy check. He knows all the right things to say and do to secure a deal and comes off as the smooth-talking diplomat he is IRL instead of the tongue-tied nitwit the investment into his character dictates the character is.

No, nobody is saying this at all, and I confess I don't understand how this is even a contentious issue. Let's be crystal clear:

Objectively player skill went into the decision to use acrobatics as a skill in that situation. The tactical skills that went into the decision to invest in that ability as well as the choice for when and how to use it are all player skills that are being rewarded in the game, and nobody thinks that it is unfair to do so.

The fact that in your example the talkative person didn't choose to add narrative flair to the acrobatics check doesn't mean that he couldn't have done so, nor does it mean it wouldn't have added to the game if he did, nor does it mean the dice wouldn't have mattered if he did. Indeed, in any game I am playing in, I would explicitly encourage him to describe his actions, and if he demurred (and I was the game master), I would offer some up of my own - because "I roll acrobatics" is not letting me or anyone else at the table get a real sense of the narrative. This has nothing to do with "punishing bad RP", and everything to do with improving the gameplay at the table.

Also, nobody is saying that ONLY the talking matters when it comes to social checks - that is an absolute strawman. In your example of the character with no ranks in diplomacy but a talkative character, dice are still being rolled. Character skills are still being used - at best, the strong roleplay amounts to a +2 circumstance bonus to the check, essentially the same as good positioning for flanking adds to attack rolls.

Furthermore, everyone would agree that the player who is playing this way (being way more suave or intelligent than his character) is not playing the role well, and thus perhaps the +2 bonus isn't warranted in that case - the GM might say something like "In your head, you have the argument well laid out, and it's very persuasive, but when you actually put it into words, it gets a bit garbled - I'll let you make the roll, but your character isn't really the type to be able to explain those concepts fluently.

This doesn't mean that players with low social skill characters are excluded from roleplay bonuses, either - maybe instead of giving an eloquent speech or complex argument, Greg the Gregarious instead RPs out giving a simple, earnest plea, more in line with the naive, unsophisticated character he's playing. Maybe THAT justifies a +2 circumstance bonus on the diplomacy check?

Further (and I can't believe this needs to be said), it should be clear that "not giving a bonus" when someone doesn't RP beyond "I roll acrobatics" is not a punishment. If you personally don't want to go beyond that, that's fine - but narrative descriptions that flow along with the game add much to the experience, and there is no reason they shouldn't be rewarded.

If you don't think people aren't going beyond a simple +2 circumstance bonus, you're playing in a different world than I am. Maybe no one in this thread is advocating it, but people have reported it. In fact, born_of_fire claims to be describing a player and events in a game they're in.

As for the acrobatics example: Player skill goes into investing in acrobatics and in choosing when to use acrobatics. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.
Player skill also goes into investing in diplomacy and in choosing when to use diplomacy. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.

Speaking in character when using diplomacy may use player skill, but it's not player skill at the game, it's external skill. Much like bringing the player's actual skill at acrobatics into play.

Edit: Actually just saw this at the end of the post:

MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
No matter how much it might feel to you like that's what happens, it is not, so you need to stop responding to that fear as if it were a legitimate part of this discussion. ... Point blank if you are interpreting this as removing dice from the equation for social skills, you are interpreting it incorrectly.

Perhaps you shouldn't tell born_of_fire what's happening in their games? Cause this part really comes across as pretty blatant dismissal. You might be trying to just say that no one here is suggesting that, but it comes across as "You're wrong. That's not happening in your game."


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
thejeff wrote:
If you don't think people aren't going beyond a simple +2 circumstance bonus, you're playing in a different world than I am. Maybe no one in this thread is advocating it, but people have reported it. In fact, born_of_fire claims to be describing a player and events in a game they're in.

I wasn't talking about what people are doing in their own games, I'm talking about what is being advocated for in this thread. The fact that there are "bad" games happening all over the world, all the time, is not news to me, nor is it relevant to a discussion here of what good play ought to look like.

I think at best it's accurate to say that some people are AFRAID of the things that you are describing, or feel they are bad, and are conflating "rewarding good roleplay" with all those bad practices because either they genuinely can't tell the difference or they are falling victim to a slippery slope fallacy. In any case, it is factually inaccurate to say that "rewarding good RP necessarily equals 'remove dice from the table and unfairly only allow smooth-talking players to have any success at the table in any situation', and any position that is predicated on the rejection of the latter proposition (dice don't matter) is not in any way a warrant against the former practice (rewarding good RP).

Again, this should not be a difficult or controversial idea, and the fact that it somehow is makes me certain that at least one side in this debate is massively misunderstanding what is actually being discussed.

thejeff wrote:

As for the acrobatics example: Player skill goes into investing in acrobatics and in choosing when to use acrobatics. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.

Player skill also goes into investing in diplomacy and in choosing when to use diplomacy. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.

Speaking in character when using diplomacy may use player skill, but it's not player skill at the game, it's external skill. Much like bringing the player's actual skill at acrobatics into play.

Also factually inaccurate - being able to narrate things well is not necessarily the same as "being a smooth talker", though it is similar (you yourself made this point earlier, I believe). Since roleplaying is at it's heart a game of crafting a narrative, player skills which add to that narrative cannot be considered 'external' skills, anymore than the experience to know how and when to use acrobatics to avoid an AoO is. Put another way, your counter argument asserts that the appropriate "player skill" to apply to acrobatics would be the player doing a hand-stand, but that analogy supposes that "narrating a social scene" and "performing that scene as an actor" are synonymous, but they are not. While the latter is an example of the former, not every example of the former is the latter (if all A are B, it does not follow that all B are A, in other words). What I am explaining is that the "external" player skill of 'can describe actions well' is the skill that is actually being rewarded here, not "is a smooth talker", that this skill can be developed and should be encouraged at the table, and that it is no more "external" to the game of collaborative storytelling that is roleplaying than is the skill of knowing how to mechanically build a character and interact with the combat rules.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
Second, you need to be introduced to the power of the word "yet", I think. When you say that you are not gregarious, you are acting like that is a fundamental fact of your nature, somehow beyond your control to change. That's a lie. Instead of saying "I'm not good at RPing conversations", say "I'm not good at RPing conversations YET." Acknowledge that it is a skill you could invest real life energy in, just like you would expect a player to invest in learning the combat rules and developing tactical skill over time. If you don't WANT to develop those skills, that's fine too - it's not wrongbadfun to only enjoy the parts of the game that you enjoy - but that doesn't mean that people who do more to make the table better shouldn't be rewarded for those efforts. If you feel bad about other people sometimes getting a minor bonus for a cool bit of RP, that's not a reason for those people to not be rewarded, that's a reason for you to think about upping your game.

Do you think that the skill of "RPing conversations" is completely different and much simpler than the skill of "real life conversation"?

Cause this again seems very dismissive. The things that hang me up in role playing conversation seem to me to be the same things that impede my real life social skills. Yes, these are theoretically skills one can learn, much like Acrobatics is, to use the previous example, or rocket science or neurosurgery. Admittedly, we don't demand professional level skills, but otoh these are skills that we don't teach well. We tend to just assume kids will pick them up on their own.
Learning the combat rules and game mechanics is really trivial in comparison.


MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
thejeff wrote:
If you don't think people aren't going beyond a simple +2 circumstance bonus, you're playing in a different world than I am. Maybe no one in this thread is advocating it, but people have reported it. In fact, born_of_fire claims to be describing a player and events in a game they're in.

I wasn't talking about what people are doing in their own games, I'm talking about what is being advocated for in this thread. The fact that there are "bad" games happening all over the world, all the time, is not news to me, nor is it relevant to a discussion here of what good play ought to look like.

I think at best it's accurate to say that some people are AFRAID of the things that you are describing, or feel they are bad, and are conflating "rewarding good roleplay" with all those bad practices because either they genuinely can't tell the difference or they are falling victim to a slippery slope fallacy. In any case, it is factually inaccurate to say that "rewarding good RP necessarily equals 'remove dice from the table and unfairly only allow smooth-talking players to have any success at the table in any situation', and any position that is predicated on the rejection of the latter proposition (dice don't matter) is not in any way a warrant against the former practice (rewarding good RP).

Again, this should not be a difficult or controversial idea, and the fact that it somehow is makes me certain that at least one side in this debate is massively misunderstanding what is actually being discussed.

thejeff wrote:

As for the acrobatics example: Player skill goes into investing in acrobatics and in choosing when to use acrobatics. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.

Player skill also goes into investing in diplomacy and in choosing when to use diplomacy. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.

Speaking in character when using diplomacy may use player skill, but it's not player skill at the game, it's external skill. Much like bringing the player's actual

...

And now I have absolutely no idea what you're actually saying.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

When the character with the woefully low diplomacy roll is more successful than the character with the very high diplomacy roll, due to the player’s ability to sweet-talk IRL, then the dice are most certainly being taken out of the equation.

What, exactly, makes you qualified to evaluate what is happening in games where I’ve participated and you have not?


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
born_of_fire wrote:
When the character with the woefully low diplomacy roll is more successful than the character with the very high diplomacy roll, due to the player’s ability to sweet-talk IRL, then the dice are most certainly being taken out of the equation.

Your GM is causing a problem by ignoring the actual rolls.

This isn't "punishing bad role playing". It's a meta-game problem of the GM not following the rules of Pathfinder


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
born_of_fire wrote:

When the character with the woefully low diplomacy roll is more successful than the character with the very high diplomacy roll, due to the player’s ability to sweet-talk IRL, then the dice are most certainly being taken out of the equation.

What, exactly, makes you qualified to evaluate what is happening in games where I’ve participated and you have not?

Hey, here's a thought! Maybe that's not actually what I'm saying? Maybe what I'm saying is that your rejection of that idea isn't really relevant to what is being advocated here, because there is no necessary connection between what you are describing and what is meant when people say "rewarding good RP"? I'm not dismissing your experiences as "that's not what happened", I'm dismissing them as "that's not a realistic interpretation of what is being advocated here" - and that shouldn't be confusing, since I've given some pretty clear and explicit examples of what I at least am specifically advocating.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

What is being advocated is simply varying degrees of what I’m describing. The difference between a +1 or +2 circumstance bonus and a +10 or more circumstance bonus. At what circumstance bonus is the GM no longer following the rules of Pathfinder?

Edit: FWIW, I prefer the roll then act out the results method. That way, I do the roleplay but the final arbiter of my success is the roll, regardless of whether my roleplay was brilliant, terrible, mediocre or whatever—just like every other skill check in the game.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
thejeff wrote:
Do you think that the skill of "RPing conversations" is completely different and much simpler than the skill of "real life conversation"?

No, I don't think it's a completely different skill (indeed, I explicitly noted that as YOU SAID, they are similar). What I said is that they are, at least in some respects dissimilar, and that this dissimilarity undercuts the assumptions in your argument. Neither "completely different" nor "much simpler" are necessary benchmarks for me to demonstrate that.

thejeff wrote:

Cause this again seems very dismissive. The things that hang me up in role playing conversation seem to me to be the same things that impede my real life social skills. Yes, these are theoretically skills one can learn, much like Acrobatics is, to use the previous example, or rocket science or neurosurgery. Admittedly, we don't demand professional level skills, but otoh these are skills that we don't teach well. We tend to just assume kids will pick them up on their own.

Learning the combat rules and game mechanics is really trivial in comparison.

Well, it's not dismissive, anymore than your blithe assessment that "learning the game mechanics is really trivial" is. What I'm saying is that both are skills, both can be learned, and both are equally valid and important, but that you don't perceive it that way because you are personally biased towards one set of skills that come naturally to you.

As for the very good point that learning social skills is not something that is direct as learning rules - let's turn that around - perhaps that's a reason to assist in the development of those skills at the table with minor encouragement?


I feel like it's worth revisiting that there's no "one-size fits all" solution, since there's no one true way to play Pathfinder. I mean, over half of my group was in the same improv class at one point, so obviously our games are going to have more of a "yes, and" feel to them; that's what works for us. If you've got a really important roll to make, why not take a moment out for a flashback for your youth, since it's a player explaining something to the GM, the other players get to portray NPCs briefly. We all think this is fun, but maybe nobody else would, so y'all don't have to do it.

I just want to underline- Reward people for the behavior your want to see, this is better than punishment for the opposite- we play these games with our friends to have fun, after all. Nobody should be left feeling bad at the end.

Also, you can do any of this incrementally and it pays to consider unintended consequences. Nobody needs to jump immediately to "that conversation was roleplayed well enough that no rolls are needed" but that's a thing that can happen, and it's fine until people start trying to exploit it by playing monstrously persuasive characters with a 5 charisma and no ranks in talking skills. If your players don't do that, there's no problem. Before you get there, small circumstance bonuses or slightly lower DCs, or "award hero points for particularly good RP moments" (heroes are, after all, largely defined by the cool stuff they do) or something minor like that is a good incremental step.


6 people marked this as a favorite.

I think there seems to be some confusion between good role playing and good social skills. If Throg the warrior marches up to the guard and says,
"Oi, you! You gonna let us in or what?",
Has he role played? Yes. Does it enhance the story? Yes. Should it be rewarded? Absolutely not.

If Magnus the wizard with 5 Cha minces up to the guard, looks at him down his nose and says,
" My good man, I am obviously a superior class of person who deserves to be let in. Kindly let us pass."
Has he role played? Yes. Does it enhance the story? yes. Should it be rewarded? Absolutely not.

So the only time social skills make a difference is if you are playing a face character. I am a bit wary of rewarding this character for good role play if the previous two examples were not rewarded. Yes I am in favor of encouraging role playing, but role playing should be its own reward; if I am playing Throg or Magnus I play that way because that is the way they are and it enhances the story, not because I am looking for a bonus on my diplomacy roll. Similarly if I play a smooth talking face I might say something more appropriate not because I want a bonus to my diplomacy, but because its in character and simply what he would do.

I particularly remember a time when experience was rewarded based in part on role playing; one of my friends was particularly good at roleplaying meaning that his character was always a level ahead of everyone else's, meaning that he was able to dominate the game. Such a reward becomes perverse since I (who was not bad at roleplaying) felt there was no point in putting in the effort to role play as I could not compete, which ends up undermining the very thing it was meant to support.

Personally, I have no problem with giving a small bonus if that's what the gm wants; the rules even suggest giving circumstance bonuses so its within the rules, but I would be careful about labelling it as a roleplaying bonus. Its a circumstance bonus, not a roleplay bonus; otherwise Throg should get a bonus for being obnoxious and Magnus should get one for being condescending, even though they did not use any social skills.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
born_of_fire wrote:

What is being advocated is simply varying degrees of what I’m describing. The difference between a +1 or +2 circumstance bonus and a +10 or more circumstance bonus. At what circumstance bonus is the GM no longer following the rules of Pathfinder?

Edit: FWIW, I prefer the roll then act out the results method. That way, I do the roleplay but the final arbiter of my success is the roll, regardless of whether my roleplay was brilliant, terrible, mediocre or whatever—just like every other skill check in the game.

Ahh, the slippery slope argument rears its head fully!

The answer to the question is really two-fold:

1) All of them are still playing "the rules of Pathfinder", because explicit in those rules is the idea that they are a general framework for collaborative storytelling and gameplay, to be adjusted as needed by individual groups and tables. There is no "one true way" of playing Pathfinder, there are just ways that some individuals prefer more than others.

2) +2 is the standard for circumstance bonuses typically, and while it might not be universal, it's a fallacy to assume that if a +2 is acceptable in some cases, that a +10 is equally likely or acceptable in all of those same cases.


Gavmania wrote:

I think there seems to be some confusion between good role playing and good social skills. If Throg the warrior marches up to the guard and says,

"Oi, you! You gonna let us in or what?",
Has he role played? Yes. Does it enhance the story? Yes. Should it be rewarded? Absolutely not.

If Magnus the wizard with 5 Cha minces up to the guard, looks at him down his nose and says,
" My good man, I am obviously a superior class of person who deserves to be let in. Kindly let us pass."
Has he role played? Yes. Does it enhance the story? yes. Should it be rewarded? Absolutely not.
<snip>

It is important to keep the RP consistent with the character. There is a difference between Kharamonn the dwarf suggesting, "Look lads, can't we all just sit down, have some of my fine beer, and talk about this like reasonable people?" diplomacy: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (14) + 5 = 19 profession brewer: 1d20 + 5 ⇒ (13) + 5 = 18 and Baronet Alistair Quinnell suggesting, "Please, good sir, we are all civilized folk here. Kindly sheath that blade so we can discuss things like the reasonable gentlebeings I am confident that you are." diplomacy: 1d20 + 10 ⇒ (17) + 10 = 27


Wow, apparently the virtual dice like to reward RP today :)


thejeff wrote:

As for the acrobatics example: Player skill goes into investing in acrobatics and in choosing when to use acrobatics. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.

Player skill also goes into investing in diplomacy and in choosing when to use diplomacy. Those are skills in the mechanics of the game.
Speaking in character when using diplomacy may use player skill, but it's not player skill at the game, it's external skill. Much like bringing the player's actual skill at acrobatics into play.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
Also factually inaccurate - being able to narrate things well is not necessarily the same as "being a smooth talker", though it is similar (you yourself made this point earlier, I believe). Since roleplaying is at it's heart a game of crafting a narrative, player skills which add to that narrative cannot be considered 'external' skills, anymore than the experience to know how and when to use acrobatics to avoid an AoO is. Put another way, your counter argument asserts that the appropriate "player skill" to apply to acrobatics would be the player doing a hand-stand, but that analogy supposes that "narrating a social scene" and "performing that scene as an actor" are synonymous, but they are not. While the latter is an example of the former, not every example of the former is the latter (if all A are B, it does not follow that all B are A, in other words). What I am explaining is that the "external" player skill of 'can describe actions well' is the skill that is actually being rewarded here, not "is a smooth talker", that this skill can be developed and should be encouraged at the table, and that it is no more "external" to the game of collaborative storytelling that is roleplaying than is the skill of knowing how to mechanically build a character and interact with the combat rules.
thejeff wrote:
And now I have absolutely no idea what you're actually saying.

To elaborate on MrTsFloatinghead's point, the players' descriptions control two major elements of good storytelling.

The first element is the ability to make the character come alive. The minimal effort is, "I play a half-orc ranger." An elegant effort would be, "Brock'drogud stands boldly in the speckled light filtering through the trees. His clothing shows the colors and lines of tanned hide, crafted with the simplest of tools. But he is no barbarian, for his gentle smile speaks of a calm heart and makes his tusks seem no more dangerous than the teeth of your pet dog of boyhood."

born_of_fire's gregarious friend exploited this skill. He wove the words of a character who could charm a merchant so well that the GM forgot that on the character's sheet was written, "Diplomacy +0."

The second element is that of narrative. The GM sets up the setting and plot hooks, but the players decide on the actions and create the story itself. It can be a crude story, such as going into a goblin cave, killing the goblins, and taking their loot, just because no-one cares about goblins. Or it can be a magnificent story. My players routinely take a Paizo adventure path and derail the preplanned story elements to make the tale better.

For example, the PC Boffin in my Iron Gods campaign was a dwarf gunslinger. Boffin had taken the Local Ties trait, so she had an official backstory. She was a dwarven smith who had grown up in Torch. Many dwarves in town were her cousins and many smiths in town had hired her as temporary help, before she found permanent employment with Khonnir Baine, a newly arrived wizard and inventor accompanied by his five-year-old daughter. Twelve years later, at the beginning of the adventure, Khonnir was lost in an expedition to save the town. Three other expeditions had disappeared, too.

When the other two PCs, Elric Jones and Kirii, arrived in town, Boffin teamed up with them to find Khonnir. They had a short technolgical adventure in town, as the module planned, but their reaction changed the narrative. They took their recent discovery to town councilor Dolga Feddert, Boffin's distant cousin, rather than charging into trouble on their own.

And the town council, impressed by their sense of community responsibility, offered a fourth NPC party member, perhaps a town guard? (This was before I recruited a fourth player.) The players' choice caught me off guard. They wanted Val Baine, Khonnir's 17-year-old daughter, who lacked a stat block, because she deserved a chance to search for her father. (In the module, Val was only 13 years old, but Boffin's backstory had stretched out the timeline.) Their narrative was that they were ordinary townsfolk forced into extraordinary circumstances, and Val was another person just as deep in the same extraordinary circumstances. That made sense, so I statted out Val as a cantrip-casting bloodrager who thought she was an apprentice wizard and she joined the party.

There were no Diplomacy rolls. Boffin had poor Charisma and no ranks in Diplomacy. But she had friends and family and that created the narrative.


MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
born_of_fire wrote:
I’m fairly confident Mathmuse understands where to apply diplomacy versus bluff and that this determination has little to with the overarching topic.
Well, it's nice that you are confident in that - I'm not certain either way, though, since on balance it seems more likely that "making contacts at the party" was a pretext for whatever goal the players were really after (since it's unlikely in my estimation -though admittedly not impossible - that the goal of the party was the professional development of the bard). The reason this matters is because it is a perfect example of good roleplay/player skill being rewarded. In the likely scenario that this was actually a highly plausible bluff that got rolled as diplomacy instead of a bluff check contested by sense motive, that's potentially a significant mechanical advantage earned by a player who used real-life social skills (in this case thinking about the plausible social dynamics of this situation) to manufacture a better approach than just "I roll bluff" or even "I roll diplomacy". Even in the case where in this specific example there really was no ulterior motive for wanting to go to the party, and it was a straight diplomacy roll down the line, as stated, with no elaboration or additional verbal decoration, that would probably be enough to earn a +2 circumstance bonus for choosing an avenue that was closely aligned with the desires and biases of the NPC.

As for me confusing diplomacy versus bluff, let me repeat a piece of yesterday's Iron Gods session:

MATHMUSE: Myrmidon robot number one moves next to Kirii and, wait a moment. It has been ordered to kill everyone in the Interface Center room, but Kirii is just outside that room. It asks Kirii if she is going to enter the Interface Center.
KIRII'S PLAYER: I am not going into that room.
MATHMUSE: Roll a bluff check.
KIRII'S PLAYER: I am telling the truth. It should be a diplomacy check.
MATHMUSE: Okay, roll a diplomacy check.
KIRII'S PLAYER: (rolls) 35.
MATHMUSE: Hm, diplomacy is opposed by diplomacy. (picks up the module with the myrmidon robot description). Sense Motive +22 but no Diplomacy skill. Charisma 5, so -3 penalty. (rolls) 14 minus 3 is 11. The robot believes you and does not attack. Myrmidon robot two's roll (rolls) is 8, so it believes you, too.

Kirii is the party skald and has high skills in both Bluff and Diplomacy. Her Diplomacy is better. And since Kirii was wielding a ranged weapon, entering the small crowded room would not be to her combat advantage. I am unsure how to roll the social situation of persuading someone to believe you when you tell the truth.

As for the bard at the dinner party, I had a mental sketch of the party needing to contact a particular guest at the party, perhaps an important person who does not let strangers into his own house. Thus, the bard's line, "My goal is to make contacts among your guests," is only a half-truth. The full truth would be, "My goal is to make contact with one particular guest." The bard is honestly negotiating with the dinner sponsor that he wants to mingle and talk with the guests after his performance, and his behavior will be consistent with his half-truth.

Only twice in 37 years have I seem bard (or skald) characters care about their musical careers. Kirii in my Iron Gods campaign is one of the two. She holds concerts, four so far during adventuring time and more during downtime. The adventure path did not plan for concerts, but it was worth the effort to fit them in just for the fun of roleplaying.

MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
First, the part you're really not going to want to hear, but needs to be said again, I fear - at some level, being "gregarious" in the sense of being able to tell a good story is a necessary and expected part of being a role player. When you argue that it's unfair to reward those skills because you fear you don't have them, that's exactly the same as saying "Compare this to someone like me who is not so tactically minded. When it comes time to move around the battlefield, I don't remember that I might provoke AoOs as I move within the monster's reach, so my character takes a hit that I could have avoided if I had taken a 5 foot step instead. It's not fair to penalize my character (a battle hardened veteran who would know to approach a long-limbed foe in a guarded way) simply because as a player I'm not as tactical." The only reason it seems different to you is because you perceive yourself as having one set of skills and lacking the other.

I have a player, who was a newbie two years ago when I invited him to my weekly Iron Gods campaign, that sometimes forgets those AoO rules that a veteran fighter like his character would remember. I remind him, "Do you want to move past you enemy that way? It will provoke an attack of opportunity," and allow him to change his action. Kirii's player gives him similar reminders, "You can use Powerful Blow because of Kirii's song."


Honestly, you're confusing me further. Largely because I have no idea whether your description or example match the nuances of what MrTsFloatingHead was saying.

I'm pretty sure that we're all mostly talking past each other here, because we're using the same terms with similar but not actually the same meanings.


Gavmania wrote:

I think there seems to be some confusion between good role playing and good social skills. If Throg the warrior marches up to the guard and says,

"Oi, you! You gonna let us in or what?",
Has he role played? Yes. Does it enhance the story? Yes. Should it be rewarded? Absolutely not.

If Magnus the wizard with 5 Cha minces up to the guard, looks at him down his nose and says,
" My good man, I am obviously a superior class of person who deserves to be let in. Kindly let us pass."
Has he role played? Yes. Does it enhance the story? yes. Should it be rewarded? Absolutely not.

So the only time social skills make a difference is if you are playing a face character. I am a bit wary of rewarding this character for good role play if the previous two examples were not rewarded.

I think this is a good point, but I feel like we should put "reward" in the context of "giving the player that thing they wanted when they conceived of their character and/or decided to roleplay the way they did." I feel like it's reasonable to assume people have characters they want to play and not other characters, but if that's not the case there are probably more fundamental problems.

Like if Throg's player decided to play a half-orc invulnerable rager barbarian with "Come and Get Me" and max ranks in Perform(Comedy) because they wanted to insult imaginary people and get into fights where they would suffer nary a scratch, when the player approaches the guard with "Oi, Piemaster, you wanna put that pie down and let me in?" then the you don't reward the player by making the guard cheerfully do what was requested. Instead, you can reward good roleplaying by having that guard get mad, and either attack or stew angrily in their own powerlessness as is appropriate to the scene.

If Magnus's player elected to play an Elf Wizard so they can snootily lord their obvious superiority over everybody else, you indulge that player's goals by giving them opportunities to demonstrate how much smarter and more capable they are.

The reason you consider Freida the Friendly Paladin's player talk their way out of things is because the reason they chose to play that character that way was to be friends with everyone and beloved by all. So when they enhance the game for everyone with a virtuosa performance at their "best person ever" schtick, you can indulge them by giving them what they want.

I don't think it's unreasonable to have players who have chosen to play characters who are kind, considerate, cooperative, empathetic, and helpful avoid more fights than if they had decided to play characters who were cruel, greedy, rude misanthropes. It's really no different than how people playing characters who are thoughtful, cautious planners are going to stumble into fewer traps and ambushes than if they had decided to play characters who just rush into everything.

The Exchange

4 people marked this as a favorite.

Ok... in the interest of full disclosure - I am against the practice of giving a mechanical bonus (+2?) as a reward for "role playing good", esp. the way it is mostly being presented here.

so, can my PC have a bonus on the:

- "To Hit" and "Damage" rolls if I (the player) can actually demonstrate a fencing routine?

- day job rolls as a Cook, if I bring cookies I baked to the game (something I have done several times for my character with profession cook - along with recipes to hand out to the other players.)

- Disable Device roll for actually having lock picks, and demonstrating how they work at the game table?

- Knowledge rolls for being able to quote from the Bestiary entry about the monster we just encountered?

as long as I do the above "In Character" - with a "Character Voice"? And do it BEFORE the skill check roll?

IMHO: Role Playing a Skill Check can't often be done properly before the Skill Roll is done - because the player needs to know how well the check went to make the Role Playing match the Roll Playing. Otherwise the two things (the Role Play and the Roll) will match less than half the time.

edit: in re-reading my post, I fear I am not presenting my opinion clearly. Looks like I blew that Diplomacy roll....

Here - trying to explain my opinion better...

I've been playing Role Playing games for more years than many of our players have been alive. I can "smooze the DM" as much as the next guy... but when it comes to the mechanics of the game - it sort of bothers me when the judge gives me a bonus, when the 10 year old girl beside me did just as well on her roll as I did on mine... and I succeed and she fails. Esp. If the person running the game slapped a penalty on her roll... The difference? I'm playing the game the way the Judge wants me to (because I'm more experienced at it - and more comfortable acting in front of people). Kind of feels like we are saying to that kid "you're having bad-wrong-fun" - "you're playing the game wrong". "We don't like the way you play". I, personally, don't like that aspect of our hobby. Where we are "teaching someone HOW TO PLAY RIGHT"....So if it's all the same to you, when I'm at your table, please don't give me a RP bonus when I "smooze the DM" and "play to my audience" ... the reward I am getting from "the most brilliant role-playing exposition" when I speak in character voices and do a little method acting is the fun I get from the DOING it... the fun I see on the other players faces when they watch me do it. The laughs...
Because you know what? Sometimes we role play, sometimes we roll play. And it's all part of the game.

Players even play different at different times...

I like to see players having FUN their own way. I don't need to force them to do it my way.

Sometime, early in a CON, when I'm really in "the zone", I can play a conman that would pull a bluff on Razmir himself!... other times, I'm down and not really feeling it - in need of caffeine perhaps, and I just need to roll the dice and read off the numbers.

A GM that can play to both, and recognize when he/she needs to do one and/or the other (perhaps with different players at the same table at the same time) impresses me greatly. Often in PFS I'm impressed.

So, IMHO, when we give player X a bonus for his (the players) performance, in a way we are also penalizing someone for being shy, or tired, or young (and shy), or rushed, or ...so many other things... because they do not play the game the way we think they should. They are having fun "the wrong way".

Do we do the same thing for someone who just rolls her climb skill checks? or her swim? Does she have to say "I'm doing a 'dog paddle' over to the wall and try to climb out... ah... using both hands to boost me out of the water and the wall as leverage." Should she take us down to the hotel pool to show us HOW her character does that swim check? (realizing here that my wife would do MUCH better at this - as I can't swim and she is a Water Aerobics instructor.)

How about in combat? should we penalize someone for just rolling the attack - without stating HOW they are attacking? Does a player who is a fencing master (or at least LOOKS like one) get a bonus if he pulls a rapier and flourish's it about?

Diplomacy (all the social skills in fact) is just another skill check - to say "If they role-play greatly, I give a modifier because they entertained me. If they choose not to role-play the conversation, they don't get the bonus, and will likely fail" or "If they dance poorly, I give no modifier..."...

Sorry for the Rant... Returning control back to you


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

It was a running gag at some LARPs back in the day that folks would deliberately 'dump stat' their Social attributes because they could 'cover that hole with roleplay until they could "buy it up" '.

It got to the point where folks would *deliberately* overact negative traits they didn't have (using the Performance ability) to get people to call out negatives that weren't there and get dinged, keeping that 'dump' stat safe in the 'bidding' process.

The balance point is hard to find, as all tables are different. Even a group that has been meeting together for months may go out of balance if the players start over-doing social rp... and depending on how, can even see a table 'blow-up'.

The Exchange

5 people marked this as a favorite.

here's a post by "Bill Baldwin - Venture-Agent, Florida—Melbourne aka trollbill" posted on Jun 8, 2016, 10:05 am on a different thread... but I really like it, so this is quoting him here...

"The biggest problem I have whenever this type of discussion comes up is that is seems those asking for rewards for good role-playing seem to limit good role-playing rewards only to those characters with good social skills. Eloquent characters are rewarded for role-playing eloquent speeches while ineloquent characters are chastised for bad role-playing when they wax equally eloquent. Yet I see no suggestions of a reward for role-playing ineloquent characters in an ineloquent manner. If we want to reward good role-playing, why are we only rewarding players who are role-playing their good social skill characters well?"

yeah - I don't think I can add much to that. but I'm sure I will try to...

The Exchange

What I think is ment by "reward players who are role-playing ineloquent characters in an ineloquent manner" is to provide an in game - in encounter - bonus to the skill check that that player is having her PC attempt for role playing her socially inept PC doing socially inept things/saying things the Socially Challanged PC would do. Some examples might be...

A) Socially Challanged PC is being subjected to a Interview by the local authorities. Player states her PC Farts during questioning - whenever asked a question. This is her "Bluff" check... Rolling a 15 with her -2 for a CHA 7, and she gets a 13. The judge figures this is "very much In Character, and good roll playing (hopefully the PLAYER did not "Act Out" the action!) so awards her a +2 to her skill check - and perhaps the PC thus gets the 15 Bluff needed to avoid being "detained for further questioning"

LINK at own risk

B) A Socially Challanged-PC attempting to do an aid another check on Diplomacy states that she steps out of the room - going to "see a man about a dog" - and thus is trying avoid the social interactions that her PC tries to avoid because the PC is so shy (having a CHA of 7)... The Social Wall-flower rolls a 10 -2 skill, but is given a bonus of +2 for "playing her PC in character - Role Playing the Right Way" and so this means her PC Aids the Face Character trying to Gather Info... basically by NOT being in the room to distract the NPC from the Face PC.

C) During an "interview" of mook prisoners by the most Intimidating Party Face, the Socially Challlanged Knife-Master PC (named Jane the Knive for a reason and during Introductions she stated her PC was "All about the Knives), states that she "makes a point being seen watching the Paladin step around a corner, and when he's out of sight my PC will be TOTALLY disinterested in the mooks (she's not good a People Skills PC) and so I'll pull out a whetstone to start re-sharpen the knives I used in combat. Totally engrossed in the work at hand... take a moment to enjoy the gleam of light reflected on the blade, and TOTALLY NOT watching the mooks. - Roll an Aid on the Intimidate check.. I got a final 9..." ... Does she get a bonus for Role Playing Right? Heck, I'd give her a +2 bonus to that skill check, so I'd count it as an Aid Another. But then I would likely give the Paladin the same bonus to an Aid Another on the SAME check - just for stating that he was "Confident that the other PCs wont do more than scare the Prisoners - I know my party isn't EVIL after all, so with a knowing look at all my friends I'll nod and say something about checking the back trail and do just that - move back around the corner to check the back trail with a detect evil just incase something has picked up our trail."

Anyone else think of any examples of Socially Inept PCs getting bonuses to Social skill rolls when their Players play them doing Socially Inept things? Bonuses on skills they are BAD at for Role Playing the BAD attempts?


1 person marked this as a favorite.
nosig wrote:
Ok... in the interest of full disclosure - I am against the practice of giving a mechanical bonus (+2?) as a reward for "role playing good", esp. the way it is mostly being presented here.

I feel though, that this is a thing we nonetheless see in official Paizo products.

In the spoiler is an example in the form of a brief snippet from of Pathfinder 101: the Kintargo Contract.

Spoiler:
Quote:
"This requires a successful DC 30 Diplomacy check. If the PCs attempt to buy her cooperation by offering a bribe (even if the offering is presented as restitution for her family’s heartache), she becomes offended, saying, “My grandchildren’s sacrifices are not resources to be bought or sold!” This results in a –10 penalty on the Diplomacy check (though you might allow a DC 20 Sense Motive check as a player makes such an offer to give him a hint that such a tactic might backfire). On the other hand, if during this conversation a PC expresses sorrow and offers condolences for the death of Raenna’s grandchildren, grant a +5 bonus on the Diplomacy check. Further, if the PCs point out that her vote for Jilia can help prevent further bloodshed by protecting Kintargo from Chelish invasion, the PCs gain an additional +5 bonus on this Diplomacy check. Finally, if the PCs offer to resurrect her grandchildren, she is impressed enough with the offer that no Diplomacy check is needed, but she turns the offer down, noting that “It wouldn’t be fair for my own losses to be so conveniently addressed when so many others lost children during these dark times.”

I feel like there's really no meaningful difference between "adjusting the DC up (or down) if the player says the right (or wrong) thing" and "giving a circumstance bonus or penalty for the same". I mean, mathematically they are identical, the difference is that a player will know if you tell them they got a bonus, but won't know if you secretly adjust the DC. So what is gained by doing this in secret rather than letting a player know that they are doing well? I'm honestly curious.

I also don't know if there's really a meaningful difference between a bonus or penalty for right/wrong conduct that you wrote down in your notes before the session (e.g. "so and so is an avowed atheist and an argument invoking religious doctrine or gods increases the DC") ad hoc because it made a lot of sense in context (e.g. "you realize that because so and so is an avowed atheist, the argument about being inspired by Iomedae isn't remotely convincing".)


3 people marked this as a favorite.
nosig wrote:
How about in combat? should we penalize someone for just rolling the attack - without stating HOW they are attacking? Does a player who is a fencing master (or at least LOOKS like one) get a bonus if he pulls a rapier and flourish's it about?

No, but you should get a bonus (to AC of course), for saying you're using Bonetti’s defence because of the rocky terrain.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

Naturally, the GM will counter with Capoferro.


4 people marked this as a favorite.
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I feel though, that this is a thing we nonetheless see in official Paizo products.

The difference is what it's the actual points brought up that give bonuses and NOT how eloquently you bringing up those points. For instance in the example, "sorry for your loss dude" and a 15 min speech about their condolences both give a +5 bonus. I think that when people are talking about a "reward for "role playing good"", they mean that the '15 min speech about their condolence' gets a better bonus that the 'sorry for your loss dude' because one was said better.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
PossibleCabbage wrote:
nosig wrote:
Ok... in the interest of full disclosure - I am against the practice of giving a mechanical bonus (+2?) as a reward for "role playing good", esp. the way it is mostly being presented here.

I feel though, that this is a thing we nonetheless see in official Paizo products.

In the spoiler is an example in the form of a brief snippet from of Pathfinder 101: the Kintargo Contract.

** spoiler omitted **

I feel like there's really no meaningful difference between "adjusting the DC up (or down) if the player says the right (or wrong) thing" and "giving a circumstance bonus or penalty for the same". I mean, mathematically they are identical, the difference is that a player will know if you tell them they got a bonus, but won't know if you secretly adjust the DC. So what is gained by doing this in secret rather than...

I think the difference is that those bonuses are for discreet specific things and it doesn't matter how the player expresses them.

for scenario:
The player can wax eloquent expressing their condolences or they can just say "My PC tells her we're sorry about her grandchildren" and it doesn't matter to the bonus.
Or they can give a wonderful persuasive speech and offer a bribe and still just get the penalty.

That's not a matter of the player being good at shmoozing the GM. That's bringing up relevant in game character stuff.

Now I have this sneaking suspicion that people on both sides are going to be saying "That's what I've been saying all along" and we've just been talking past each other.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Maps, Pathfinder Accessories, Pawns, Starfinder Society Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber
quibblemuch wrote:
Naturally, the GM will counter with Capoferro.

Inconceivable!


graystone wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I feel though, that this is a thing we nonetheless see in official Paizo products.
The difference is what it's the actual points brought up that give bonuses and NOT how eloquently you bringing up those points. For instance in the example, "sorry for your loss dude" and a 15 min speech about their condolences both give a +5 bonus. I think that when people are talking about a "reward for "role playing good"", they mean that the '15 min speech about their condolence' gets a better bonus that the 'sorry for your loss dude' because one was said better.

But what about an NPC who, for example, "is a man of great humor and adores wordplay" so "if the PCs make you laugh, or say/do something that you feel would make him laugh, reduce the DC by 10."

Is that acceptable?

What about just rewarding players for making arguments that are convincing because they honestly make a lot of sense and are convincing based on facts, logical cohesion, plausibility, parsimony, or anything other than delivery? On one hand that's rewarding rhetorical skill a player may or may not have, but it also seems like good arguments should succeed more often than shoddy ones.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
PossibleCabbage wrote:
Is that acceptable?

This is super wrong: "if the PCs make you laugh, or say/do something that you feel would make him laugh" That's SO subjective and relies on your "knowledge DM": if you've been friends with the Dm for 20 years, you can do that FAR easier than someone new. Heck, I know a DM I can hold down and tickle for that bonus...

If it was instead a perform (Act (comedy) or Comedy) DC to make the NPC laugh, that could work.

PossibleCabbage wrote:
What about just rewarding players for making arguments that are convincing because they honestly make a lot of sense and are convincing based on facts, logical cohesion, plausibility, parsimony, or anything other than delivery?

I'm all for a good argument and using the clues/breadcrumbs I leave. If they come up with something unexpected that makes sense, I don't mind handing out a bonus, even if given as 'hey, how about you ask about that guy' by the non-face.

PossibleCabbage wrote:
On one hand that's rewarding rhetorical skill a player may or may not have

I see it as less a rhetorical skill and more a problem solving skill: I'd look at the actual logic behind what's said and not the delivery. Being clever at problem solving is something that players AND PC's can be good at and isn't something that can be really codified. If they come up with something I didn't think of that I would have given a bonus to if I'd have thought of it, I see no reason to hold back the bonus.


PossibleCabbage wrote:
graystone wrote:
PossibleCabbage wrote:
I feel though, that this is a thing we nonetheless see in official Paizo products.
The difference is what it's the actual points brought up that give bonuses and NOT how eloquently you bringing up those points. For instance in the example, "sorry for your loss dude" and a 15 min speech about their condolences both give a +5 bonus. I think that when people are talking about a "reward for "role playing good"", they mean that the '15 min speech about their condolence' gets a better bonus that the 'sorry for your loss dude' because one was said better.

But what about an NPC who, for example, "is a man of great humor and adores wordplay" so "if the PCs make you laugh, or say/do something that you feel would make him laugh, reduce the DC by 10."

Is that acceptable?

What about just rewarding players for making arguments that are convincing because they honestly make a lot of sense and are convincing based on facts, logical cohesion, plausibility, parsimony, or anything other than delivery? On one hand that's rewarding rhetorical skill a player may or may not have, but it also seems like good arguments should succeed more often than shoddy ones.

The equivalent for the joke would be the player realizing (perhaps from previous clues and hints) that humor is the way to win this NPC over, so they tell you they're using wordplay to break the ice with him. Knowing how to make the GM laugh is in no way an in-character skill.

As for good arguments - arguments are more often than we usually want to admit convincing based on delivery. But, like with your previous example, it's reasonable to give bonuses for specific points brought up in the argument ("avoid more bloodshed"), whether they're delivered in character or not.


nosig wrote:

here's a post by "Bill Baldwin - Venture-Agent, Florida—Melbourne aka trollbill" posted on Jun 8, 2016, 10:05 am on a different thread... but I really like it, so this is quoting him here...

"The biggest problem I have whenever this type of discussion comes up is that is seems those asking for rewards for good role-playing seem to limit good role-playing rewards only to those characters with good social skills. Eloquent characters are rewarded for role-playing eloquent speeches while ineloquent characters are chastised for bad role-playing when they wax equally eloquent. Yet I see no suggestions of a reward for role-playing ineloquent characters in an ineloquent manner. If we want to reward good role-playing, why are we only rewarding players who are role-playing their good social skill characters well?"

yeah - I don't think I can add much to that. but I'm sure I will try to...

I'd reward an ineloquent character who immersively describes a scene of ineloquence, by awarding him a "Style Point" that allows one roll-twice-take-the-better (my take on "Hero Points" or "bottlecaps".) As long as they're bringing the players into the scene and enhancing the immersion, and creating a memorable RP moment, I'll reward it.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
nosig wrote:


so, can my PC have a bonus on the:

- "To Hit" and "Damage" rolls if I (the player) can actually demonstrate a fencing routine?

No, because this is not what is being suggested, nor is it a reasonable extrapolation of the position.

nosig wrote:


- day job rolls as a Cook, if I bring cookies I baked to the game (something I have done several times for my character with profession cook - along with recipes to hand out to the other players.)

No, for the same reason as before.

nosig wrote:


- Disable Device roll for actually having lock picks, and demonstrating how they work at the game table??

Ditto.

nosig wrote:


- Knowledge rolls for being able to quote from the Bestiary entry about the monster we just encountered?

Also not what is being suggested, so no.

nosig wrote:


as long as I do the above "In Character" - with a "Character Voice"? And do it BEFORE the skill check roll?

And finally, still no! This is not a valid analogy or extrapolation from what is being suggested.

I'm not saying you have to say things in character. I'm not saying that the skill in question is a funny voice or great dramatic acting. I'm saying that NARRATIVE/SOCIAL SKILLS (the Venn diagram of which MAY overlap acting/performance skills, but do not have to) are exactly as relevant in game as being skilled at manipulating the tactical combat of the game.

Let's try this analogy: Imagine for a moment that you were playing a game with no map and no minis - let's say the DM forgot the maps at home, but you still wanted to play. Now suppose that one character, during a combat, says "That orc is only a few feet ahead of me, right? Then I will use acrobatics to tumble past the orc and circle behind him, giving me and Fighter guy a flank bonus" - You would, I assume, give the player a flanking bonus, right? Even though there's no map to count out the squares, you would probably acknowledge that this action is, in fact, a valid action, and give the flanking bonus, because above and beyond it being a mechanical reward, it helps create a sense of movement and position in a battle that is otherwise happening in the theater of the mind, right?

What I am saying is that the act of physically moving a mini on a mat to a flanking position is not in any meaningful way different from the narrative, descriptive act of simply saying "I flip over the Orc's wild swing and tuck in behind him, forcing him to split his attention between me and the Fighter", and that means that it is also not meaningfully different from saying "I tell the guard that we are here for the festival those merchants from before were talking about, and that we were hired on as security", and that if you are willing to give the mechanical flank bonus for one form of good roleplay, you should probably be willing to award mechanical bonuses for the other, because they both improve play at the table, and they both should be encouraged.

Note that this also addresses the issue of "only social skills get these bonuses" - indeed, it inverts it. The situation is NOT that it is unfair to ONLY reward social skills, it's that it is unfair only rewarding one kind of good role play (the battle map kind), and not rewarding the other. It's noting that no combat, ever, is really as simple as just "I roll my attack" (or at least it shouldn't be - there are choices like flanking, positioning to block charges, using power attack or not, full defense or not, etc), so if you are okay with rewarding superior player skill in those skills (by allowing players to have the mechanical bonuses they earned), there doesn't seem to be a difference in allowing players who are skilled at taking narrative control of social scenes to also gain an advantage.

People who are saying that rewarding good roleplay only happens for social skills are in essence confusing the fact that there is already a robust mechanical system in the combat rules to reward good tactical roleplay - but that doesn't imply that we cannot or should not mechanically reward good roleplay in social settings, nor that those skills are fundamentally different at the level of crafting the collaborative narrative of the game (which is the fundamental purpose of the game).

What is frustrating to me is what seems like people limiting of the scope of what counts as "roleplaying skill" and what counts as "rewarding good roleplaying", such that they don't see that the kind of roleplaying they are already "good" at is already rewarded in basically every game, automatically and without comment or complaint, but as soon as someone else wants to get any kind of recognition it suddenly becomes "unfair" or "elitist" or "exclusionary".

Like, okay, another example - say a player came to the forums saying "Man, I'm really frustrated with my GM! He/She keeps giving out these crazy bonuses like letting people gain extra damage in exchange for accuracy because they said they were swinging extra hard, or like bonuses to hit because they positioned their mini in some weird exact configuration, or like making it harder for enemies to hit just because they say something like "I defend myself" or whatever, and it means that they always hit, always do more damage, and always avoid getting hit back. I think it's really unfair that like the little weedy magic user with a sword is doing more in combat than my badass barbarian, just because I don't butter up the GM by using all these fancy feats and skills. I'm just not good at the math and like the tactics and stuff, and I don't think it's fair that I don't get to be as badass as my character is just because my inherent, unchangeable skill with system mastery is so much lower than the other players that I can't even compete. Like, if it's going to be like this, why should I even bother?"

The correct approach to this player would not be to say "You're right, your GM should not be giving people the benefit of power attack or flanking or defensive fighting, because it's not fair to you that you don't know how to use those things!". The correct response would be to (as gently as possible) try to explain that part of the social contract of playing the game means at least attempting to engage with multiple parts of the game (even the parts you might not be naturally good at), that you can learn to improve on the parts you aren't naturally good at, that if you ask for help, a good group of players will make suggestions and help you along, and that the game is probably more rewarding if you make an effort in all parts of it - but that if you really don't want to do that, it's okay to play that way, it's just that it's not unfair for you to not get the mechanical advantages of things like feats and combat options if you choose not to develop the skills to use them.

That door swings both ways - If it's okay to expect players to be willing to develop basic competence with the combat systems and mechanical crunch of the rules (even if those players are not naturally gifted at that kind of analysis), then it has to also be okay to expect players to ALSO be willing to develop some basic roleplaying skills, to the level of at least attempting to help forge the narrative of the game, because those skills are both branches off the fundamental core of "roleplaying", and both deserving of reward. If players don't want to develop skills in one area, that's still okay, but it's not unfair to reward the players who do develop their skills.

Finally (last example, I promise) - when people say "Good roleplaying should just be its own reward", imagine someone saying "Good rolling is it's own reward" to you after you just rolled a crit, and using it as a justification for not giving you the extra damage. Or how about removing the nuances of combat from the game, because not everyone is good at it: "Well, let's just make this entire combat a single die roll - DC 20 to kill this dragon - you have a BAB of +10, plus your strength, plus magic items, plus weapon focus, plus... Okay - roll a D20, on a 4+ you kill the dragon..." No one piece of the game stands alone, or deserves to be held out as "the real game". I think the "reward" is when you put all the pieces together and get an interplay between collaborative story-telling, interpersonal interactions, rules interactions and dice rolling. Every part is equally important to the whole.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
RumpinRufus wrote:
nosig wrote:

here's a post by "Bill Baldwin - Venture-Agent, Florida—Melbourne aka trollbill" posted on Jun 8, 2016, 10:05 am on a different thread... but I really like it, so this is quoting him here...

"The biggest problem I have whenever this type of discussion comes up is that is seems those asking for rewards for good role-playing seem to limit good role-playing rewards only to those characters with good social skills. Eloquent characters are rewarded for role-playing eloquent speeches while ineloquent characters are chastised for bad role-playing when they wax equally eloquent. Yet I see no suggestions of a reward for role-playing ineloquent characters in an ineloquent manner. If we want to reward good role-playing, why are we only rewarding players who are role-playing their good social skill characters well?"

yeah - I don't think I can add much to that. but I'm sure I will try to...

I'd reward an ineloquent character who immersively describes a scene of ineloquence, by awarding him a "Style Point" that allows one roll-twice-take-the-better (my take on "Hero Points" or "bottlecaps".) As long as they're bringing the players into the scene and enhancing the immersion, and creating a memorable RP moment, I'll reward it.

To the same extent, I also reward folks for doing incredible feats of martial performances. The idea is that solving the encounter in an interesting way should provide a reward. So whether its solved by the socialite bringing everyone to the table or a Barbarian beating the chief of a tribe at arm wrestling its all good for me.


2 people marked this as a favorite.

MrTsFloatinghead: That was an impressive wall o' text. So much so that I didn't try to read through it much past the quotes... I'm not reading something with double digit paragraphs unless it's in book/pdf form. :P


Actually...

The "We don't have to RP in combat!" people are missing a point.

While it is true that you don't have to RP combat, you *can* get bonuses for using real life tactics in combat. You can do this without having to make a knowledge tactics roll.

If you flank an enemy? +2 Bonus.
If you attack a tripped enemy? Their AC is reduced by 4.
If you charge an enemy? You get a +2 to the attack and a -2 to defense.
If you move through a space of difficult terrain? You can negate an enemy's ability to charge you.

These are all things you don't need to make a roll to accomplish. They rely on you *the player* having knowledge of the Pathfinder tactical combat system, the clarity for you (as a player) to observe the situation and move properly and tactically.

If you want to say that you aren't allowed to get a circumstance bonus to social encounters for social roleplaying then I assume that you are okay with not being able to get any of those bonuses in combat without succeeding at knowledge checks? That is going to REALLY upset a lot of Fighters, Paladins, Rangers, and Swashbucklers.

Now, that being said, they aren't going to get more than a +2 to a +5 for good roleplaying, and it is completely subjective, but to say, "No! It isn't fair! They are better at talking in character than I am!"

You might be better at tactical positioning and processing of combat data than they are.

I mean, when was the last time someone made you roll when you said:

"I'm going to move here, then I am going to ready an action to strike when (so and so) moves into flank position on the other side of him."

Did the GM turn to you and say, "Make a wisdom check to see if you are wise enough to come up with that idea!"

No, of course not! Yet you got a bonus in combat from using an ability that you posses, that isn't mechanically represented on your character sheet, what so ever.


Yeah I mean you use your brain If your using tactics your rping for an advantage. If I think about it I do tend to have my character use simpler tactics when their not as bright.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

An example of good social skills provided by MrTsFloatinghead was, "I tell the guard that we are here for the festival those merchants from before were talking about, and that we were hired on as security." If a player made up that line from scratch, I would respond, "What festival? What merchants? Are you bluffing that there is a festival in town?" Sure, bluffing that the party has a legitimate job at a festival would be a believable bluff; and recognizing that it is believable would be using social skills. However, a lower DC for this particular bluff would require an honest-to-goodness festival. Good social skills in describing an bluff elegantly cannot make a bluff tied to obviously false facts work.

MrTsFloatinghead probably imagined a previous encounter where the party did talk to some merchants and the merchants mentioned a festival was in town. Perhaps the GM had a plot hook at the festival or wanted to point the party to a place to buy supplies. With the information about the festival, the bluff becomes valid. But learning about the festival is not good social skills. Rather, it is effective groundwork.

Groundwork gets rewarded.

DRD1812's original complaint was about players having nothing to say during Diplomacy, but just wanting to make the roll and hope for results. Perhaps they had no idea what to say because they skipped the groundwork. If they request help from the duke because bandits are going to raid a village, and the players cannot name the village because they never asked, and cannot describe its location because they did not map the road and failed at Knowledge(Geography), and cannot give the number of bandits because they did not spy on the bandit camp, then the duke would rightfully reject their request. That is still about groundwork rather than social skills.

MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
Finally (last example, I promise) - when people say "Good roleplaying should just be its own reward", imagine someone saying "Good rolling is it's own reward" to you after you just rolled a crit, and using it as a justification for not giving you the extra damage.

When my campaign is over and the modules are packed away in bankers boxes, the only reward for my players will be their memories of good roleplaying. And we love talking about these games for decades.

During the game itself, good roleplaying, which means effective groundwork, workable character design, and tactics that optimize the abilities of the team, is mechanically rewarded. Trying to limit the phrase "good roleplaying" to mean only social situations is confusing the issue.


In my games, bad role-playing is punished with death!


GM Reaper wrote:
In my games, bad role-playing is punished with death!

I feel like your name os GM Reaper I would expect everything to be punished by Death.


How dare you call me predictable! Rocks fall! You die!


I saw that coming so far in advance I already have an alias that was made months ago just for it.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:

And finally, still no! This is not a valid analogy or extrapolation from what is being suggested.

I'm not saying you have to say things in character. I'm not saying that the skill in question is a funny voice or great dramatic acting. I'm saying that NARRATIVE/SOCIAL SKILLS (the Venn diagram of which MAY overlap acting/performance skills, but do not have to) are exactly as relevant in game as being skilled at manipulating the tactical combat of the game.

Let's try this analogy: Imagine for a moment that you were playing a game with no map and no minis - let's say the DM forgot the maps at home, but you still wanted to play. Now suppose that one character, during a combat, says "That orc is only a few feet ahead of me, right? Then I will use acrobatics to tumble past the orc and circle behind him, giving me and Fighter guy a flank bonus" - You would, I assume, give the player a flanking bonus, right? Even though there's no map to count out the squares, you would probably acknowledge that this action is, in fact, a valid action, and give the flanking bonus, because above and beyond it being a mechanical reward, it helps create a sense of movement and position in a battle that is otherwise happening in the theater of the mind, right?

What I am saying is that the act of physically moving a mini on a mat to a flanking position is not in any meaningful way different from the narrative, descriptive act of simply saying "I flip over the Orc's wild swing and tuck in behind him, forcing him to split his attention between me and the Fighter", and that means that it is also not meaningfully different from saying "I tell the guard that we are here for the festival those merchants from before were talking about, and that we were hired on as security", and that if you are willing to give the mechanical flank bonus for one form of good roleplay, you should probably be willing to award mechanical bonuses for the other, because they both improve play at the table, and they both should be encouraged.

Note that this also addresses the issue of "only social skills get these bonuses" - indeed, it inverts it. The situation is NOT that it is unfair to ONLY reward social skills, it's that it is unfair only rewarding one kind of good role play (the battle map kind), and not rewarding the other. It's noting that no combat, ever, is really as simple as just "I roll my attack" (or at least it shouldn't be - there are choices like flanking, positioning to block charges, using power attack or not, full defense or not, etc), so if you are okay with rewarding superior player skill in those skills (by allowing players to have the mechanical bonuses they earned), there doesn't seem to be a difference in allowing players who are skilled at taking narrative control of social scenes to also gain an advantage.

People who are saying that rewarding good roleplay only happens for social skills are in essence confusing the fact that there is already a robust mechanical system in the combat rules to reward good tactical roleplay - but that doesn't imply that we cannot or should not mechanically reward good roleplay in social settings, nor that those skills are fundamentally different at the level of crafting the collaborative narrative of the game (which is the fundamental purpose of the game).

What is frustrating to me is what seems like people limiting of the scope of what counts as "roleplaying skill" and what counts as "rewarding good roleplaying", such that they don't see that the kind of roleplaying they are already "good" at is already rewarded in basically every game, automatically and without comment or complaint, but as soon as someone else wants to get any kind of recognition it suddenly becomes "unfair" or "elitist" or "exclusionary".

Like, okay, another example - say a player came to the forums saying "Man, I'm really frustrated with my GM! He/She keeps giving out these crazy bonuses like letting people gain extra damage in exchange for accuracy because they said they were swinging extra hard, or like bonuses to hit because they positioned their mini in some weird exact configuration, or like making it harder for enemies to hit just because they say something like "I defend myself" or whatever, and it means that they always hit, always do more damage, and always avoid getting hit back. I think it's really unfair that like the little weedy magic user with a sword is doing more in combat than my badass barbarian, just because I don't butter up the GM by using all these fancy feats and skills. I'm just not good at the math and like the tactics and stuff, and I don't think it's fair that I don't get to be as badass as my character is just because my inherent, unchangeable skill with system mastery is so much lower than the other players that I can't even compete. Like, if it's going to be like this, why should I even bother?"

The correct approach to this player would not be to say "You're right, your GM should not be giving people the benefit of power attack or flanking or defensive fighting, because it's not fair to you that you don't know how to use those things!". The correct response would be to (as gently as possible) try to explain that part of the social contract of playing the game means at least attempting to engage with multiple parts of the game (even the parts you might not be naturally good at), that you can learn to improve on the parts you aren't naturally good at, that if you ask for help, a good group of players will make suggestions and help you along, and that the game is probably more rewarding if you make an effort in all parts of it - but that if you really don't want to do that, it's okay to play that way, it's just that it's not unfair for you to not get the mechanical advantages of things like feats and combat options if you choose not to develop the skills to use them.

That door swings both ways - If it's okay to expect players to be willing to develop basic competence with the combat systems and mechanical crunch of the rules (even if those players are not naturally gifted at that kind of analysis), then it has to also be okay to expect players to ALSO be willing to develop some basic roleplaying skills, to the level of at least attempting to help forge the narrative of the game, because those skills are both branches off the fundamental core of "roleplaying", and both deserving of reward. If players don't want to develop skills in one area, that's still okay, but it's not unfair to reward the players who do develop their skills.

Want to beat on the straw man a bit longer? I don't think it's dead yet.

No one is complaining about what you're saying they are. No one is against your position - or at least not using the arguments you're tearing apart here.
The analogy for what people are saying isn't "My GM's giving out combat bonuses for positioning and using feats", but "My GM's giving out combat bonuses cool or convincing descriptions descriptions of what they do in combat."
I know that's not what you're arguing for, but it is what the people you're arguing against are saying is happening. nosig talked right after the bit you quoted about "smoozing the GM" and about method acting and character voices.
Hell, PossibleCabbage was suggesting bonuses for making the GM laugh.

Seems to me you're projecting what you think should be happening in game
onto people's complaints and assuming they're overreacting to that. You're suggesting that someone complaining about their GM giving bonuses for florid descriptions of swordplay should learn positioning and how to use their feats. It's not helpful.


HWalsh wrote:

Actually...

The "We don't have to RP in combat!" people are missing a point.

While it is true that you don't have to RP combat, you *can* get bonuses for using real life tactics in combat. You can do this without having to make a knowledge tactics roll.

If you flank an enemy? +2 Bonus.
If you attack a tripped enemy? Their AC is reduced by 4.
If you charge an enemy? You get a +2 to the attack and a -2 to defense.
If you move through a space of difficult terrain? You can negate an enemy's ability to charge you.

These are all things you don't need to make a roll to accomplish. They rely on you *the player* having knowledge of the Pathfinder tactical combat system, the clarity for you (as a player) to observe the situation and move properly and tactically.

If you want to say that you aren't allowed to get a circumstance bonus to social encounters for social roleplaying then I assume that you are okay with not being able to get any of those bonuses in combat without succeeding at knowledge checks? That is going to REALLY upset a lot of Fighters, Paladins, Rangers, and Swashbucklers.

Now, that being said, they aren't going to get more than a +2 to a +5 for good roleplaying, and it is completely subjective, but to say, "No! It isn't fair! They are better at talking in character than I am!"

You might be better at tactical positioning and processing of combat data than they are.

I mean, when was the last time someone made you roll when you said:

"I'm going to move here, then I am going to ready an action to strike when (so and so) moves into flank position on the other side of him."

Did the GM turn to you and say, "Make a wisdom check to see if you are wise enough to come up with that idea!"

No, of course not! Yet you got a bonus in combat from using an ability that you posses, that isn't mechanically represented on your character sheet, what so ever.

Those things are all only vaguely "real life tactics". Based on real life tactics maybe. Inspired by, more likely. Trying to use real life tactics without knowledge of the mechanical interpretation probably won't work out to well.

There is no social equivalent to the PF tactical combat system. You can't learn what the social maneuvers and appropriate bonuses are out of the rule book. The most you can do is try to read your GM and persuade him to give out bonuses.
Imagine instead a game with none of PF's detailed tactical combat rules, just a vague "possible circumstance bonus for good tactics". You'd have to try to figure out not only what a good tactic would be, but more importantly what your GM thought a good tactic might be. You'd likely get wildly different results from different GMs and based on how players describe the tactic.

Mind you, I have no idea, based on this post, what you give those social circumstance bonuses for: could be strictly from suggesting specific things appropriate to the encounter (like the condolences in an example above) however expressed, or it could be for "talking in character" and being persuasive.


thejeff wrote:

Those things are all only vaguely "real life tactics". Based on real life tactics maybe. Inspired by, more likely. Trying to use real life tactics without knowledge of the mechanical interpretation probably won't work out to well.

There is no social equivalent to the PF tactical combat system. You can't learn what the social maneuvers and appropriate bonuses are out of the rule book. The most you can do is try to read your GM and persuade him to give out bonuses.
Imagine instead a game with none of PF's detailed tactical combat rules, just a vague "possible circumstance bonus for good tactics". You'd have to try to figure out not only what a good tactic would be, but more importantly what your GM thought a good tactic might be. You'd likely get wildly different results from different GMs and based on how players describe the tactic.

Mind you, I have no idea, based on this post, what you give those social circumstance bonuses for: could be strictly from suggesting specific things appropriate to the encounter (like the condolences in an example above) however expressed, or it could be for "talking in character" and being persuasive.

I expect players to do both. Substance (IE mentioning your condolences regarding her children) gets you a +2, how you say it could net you up to an extra +3 purely at my discretion.

Rarely is that full +3 ever given out.

At my home game though players who can't or won't roleplay don't get invited.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
born_of_fire wrote:
Not really, no. People are talking about players like one I have in my group who is a very gregarious fellow. He could likely sell ice to penguins but never invests in the diplomacy skill. When it comes time to move around the battle field without provoking AoO’s, this fellow says “I roll acrobatics” and the number on the die determines his success. When it comes time to get a deal from a local merchant, this fellow spends 5 minutes IC chatting up the merchant, asking after his family, discussing local events, getting the merchant to talk about himself and generally flattering him before rolling the diplomacy. His success is influenced, if not outright determined by the quality of the conversation rather than result of the diplomacy check. He knows all the right things to say and do to secure a deal and comes off as the smooth-talking diplomat he is IRL instead of the tongue-tied nitwit the investment into his character dictates the character is.
No, nobody is saying this at all, and I confess I don't understand how this is even a contentious issue. Let's be crystal clear:

Yes, people are saying this. There are posts from multiple people in this thread saying how they do this. I'll make the generous assumption that you've just accidentally skipped over them.

This post.
This post.
This post.
This post.

People absolutely are suggesting giving bonuses to rolls like Diplomacy based on how wells the words come out of the players mouth. So, please stop suggesting that people aren't suggesting this.


3 people marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
Irontruth wrote:

People absolutely are suggesting giving bonuses to rolls like Diplomacy based on how wells the words come out of the players mouth. So, please stop suggesting that people aren't suggesting this.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME WITH THIS?!?!

Yes, I agree that players who give a compelling speech can (and should) get a bonus (provided that the speech matches up well with the situation and the character they are playing).

What I am saying is that giving out that bonus is not (as it keeps being misinterpreted) "giving out an unfair bonus due to inherent acting ability", no matter how much it might feel that way to some people - it is a bonus for "Good Roleplaying", because giving a great performance in character is unquestionably ONE form of good roleplaying, but it is manifestly not the ONLY one. Getting a flank bonus in combat for good positioning is a roleplaying bonus. Realizing the idol is magic and might be cursed because you thought to cast "detect magic" is a roleplaying bonus. Getting a +2 bonus for giving a great in character performance is a roleplaying bonus. Getting a bonus for describing the performance without actually giving it is the same +2 roleplaying bonus.

This means that the charge that giving out a bonus for a compelling speech is unfair is invalid because it assumes exclusivity where there is none. Nobody (even in the posts linked, which I had, in fact, already read and understood fully) is saying that the ONLY way to get a roleplaying bonus is to give a compelling speech. They are saying that it is A way to do it, and you and other people are mistakenly assuming that means it is THE way to do it.

The reason arguments like "So, why can't I get a bonus on strength checks for deadlifting IRL?" fail is because they assume that what is being rewarded is real life player skill, when actually what is being rewarded is the way in which the player used that real-life skill to enrich the narrative of the game - and again, it is NOT the only way to do it. Lifting a heavy weight in real life might be impressive, but it does not engage with the narrative of the table at all, so isn't roleplaying. However, what if instead of just lifting something in real life and saying "gimmie bonus for real life skill", the player found a way to work those real life skills into the narrative? What if, for example, the player was playing a character who was a circus strongman before he became an adventurer, and the player sees a chance to use that character background as well as player skill to do something like "Mac twists his mustache and offers to put on a show to wow the barbarian tribe. Using his experiences from being a strongman, he knows some tricks for lifting, such as *real-life skills explained*..." - that would be absolutely worthy of a roleplay bonus - not because the player knows how to lift, but because those skills were engaged with the game.


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Maps, Pawns, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber
thejeff wrote:


No one is complaining about what you're saying they are. No one is against your position - or at least not using the arguments you're tearing apart here.
The analogy for what people are saying isn't "My GM's giving out combat bonuses for positioning and using feats", but "My GM's giving out combat bonuses cool or convincing descriptions descriptions of what they do in combat."
I know that's not what you're arguing for, but it is what the people you're arguing against are saying is happening. nosig talked right after the bit you quoted about "smoozing the GM" and about method acting and character voices.

Actually, I am arguing for giving out bonuses for good descriptions. That is absolutely what I am arguing for, 100%. That is also what other people are arguing for as well. That is also what you are arguing against, yes? What I am saying is that the underlying reason for giving out bonuses for good descriptions, or for speaking in character, or anything else is not because they are "smoozing the GM", but because they add to the quality of the game for all the players at the table, and because rewarding bonuses for good play in social settings is exactly the logical equivalent of rewarding the mechanical bonuses built into the tactical combat rules of the game, which also serve to encourage movement, position, and tactics in a way that strengthens the narrative of the game.

What I am saying is when a GM says "that was a great speech, roll your diplomacy with a +2 bonus", your objection of "That's unfairly rewarding player skills in a way that doesn't happen anywhere else in the game" is objecting to something the GM isn't doing, and makes a claim that isn't true. The GM isn't rewarding external player skills at all - the GM is rewarding a form of good roleplaying because it adds to the narrative for the table. This bonus isn't exclusive to compelling speeches for diplomacy checks and the like, but rather is possible in a number of situations - indeed, these types of bonuses are already automatically baked into the explicit rules for combat.

Now, is it POSSIBLE that some players are encountering GMs who behave poorly and only reward one type of roleplaying but not any others? Sure. But what I'm seeing in this thread is people saying "Sure, I would reward someone who gave a good speech in character with a bonus on the roll", and then I see the people objecting to that kind of rewarding of "external player skill" and not listening to or understanding the explanation that "external skills" aren't what is being rewarded, but rather "adding to the narrative" - and given that, I suspect that on balance what is more likely is that this is what is happening at most people's tables, too. It's not that someone is "smoozing the GM" for a bonus, no matter how much it might look that way to you. It's that those players are improving the game by adding to the narrative, and being rewarded for it.

thejeff wrote:


Hell, PossibleCabbage was suggesting bonuses for making the GM laugh.
Seems to me you're projecting what you think should be happening in game
onto people's complaints and assuming they're overreacting to that. You're suggesting that someone complaining about their GM giving bonuses for florid descriptions of swordplay should learn positioning and how to use their feats. It's not helpful.

And what PossibleCabbage was suggesting is one way in which good roleplay could be rewarded - note that in that example, it was tied into the narrative of the game. The mistake was not PossibleCabbage's for suggesting it, it is YOURS, for assuming that the only way to get that bonus would be to be a really funny person in real life, and that furthermore those skills don't really map to the game in any way. In the moment PossibleCabbage was suggesting, those real life skills DO map to the narrative, and nothing in what was said there implies that there is only one way to get to the bonus.

Finally, your last line is a complete distortion of what I am saying. My point was that someone who says "It's not fair that my GM gives other players a bonus on damage for saying 'I swing wildly, with all my might!', but I'm not good at those kinds of tactics..." is making the same misunderstanding as you are. The reason the player who "swings wildly" is being rewarded is because they made a roleplaying choice to fight in a specific way (by taking the power attack feat and using it in combat), and the reason that power attack feat gives this mechanical bonus is because it helps add to the narrative of the game. Further, skill in combat can be learned, which is why we don't accept "I'm just not good at combat" as a reason to deny other players the bonuses of their feats and tactics. The same is true of people who say "I'm just not good at talking" - you could learn to be better at it, and in any case one person's lack of skill in an area is not a reason to not recognize someone else who IS skilled in that area.


2 people marked this as a favorite.
MrTsFloatinghead wrote:
Irontruth wrote:

People absolutely are suggesting giving bonuses to rolls like Diplomacy based on how wells the words come out of the players mouth. So, please stop suggesting that people aren't suggesting this.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME WITH THIS?!?!

Yes, I agree that players who give a compelling speech can (and should) get a bonus (provided that the speech matches up well with the situation and the character they are playing).

What I am saying is that giving out that bonus is not (as it keeps being misinterpreted) "giving out an unfair bonus due to inherent acting ability", no matter how much it might feel that way to some people - it is a bonus for "Good Roleplaying", because giving a great performance in character is unquestionably ONE form of good roleplaying, but it is manifestly not the ONLY one. Getting a flank bonus in combat for good positioning is a roleplaying bonus. Realizing the idol is magic and might be cursed because you thought to cast "detect magic" is a roleplaying bonus. Getting a +2 bonus for giving a great in character performance is a roleplaying bonus. Getting a bonus for describing the performance without actually giving it is the same +2 roleplaying bonus.

This means that the charge that giving out a bonus for a compelling speech is unfair is invalid because it assumes exclusivity where there is none. Nobody (even in the posts linked, which I had, in fact, already read and understood fully) is saying that the ONLY way to get a roleplaying bonus is to give a compelling speech. They are saying that it is A way to do it, and you and other people are mistakenly assuming that means it is THE way to do it.

The reason arguments like "So, why can't I get a bonus on strength checks for deadlifting IRL?" fail is because they assume that what is being rewarded is real life player skill, when actually what is being rewarded is the way in which the player used that real-life skill to enrich the narrative of the game - and again, it is NOT the only way to do it....

No one here that I'm aware of has said it is the only way to do it. HWalsh, just above did say they might give a larger bonus for how it was acted out than for the actual substantive thing being suggested.

Can I get attack bonuses for describing real life fighting techniques if they enrich the narrative? Not "well that's equivalent to flanking" or some such, but "You described that takedown really well, so you get a +2 to pull it off".

But basically you've reached "It's not an unfair bonus due to inherent acting ability", instead "it's a fair bonus do to acting ability".
Which is so far from what I thought your original position was, I can't even see it anymore. And it's much more disputable. It is in fact, the central contention.


1 person marked this as a favorite.

Here's the thing I would suggest for GMs- just try stuff on a provisional basis.

Let your players know that you're experimenting, then talk to them about how it went and whether it should go away or be tweaked, or whatever.

101 to 150 of 411 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Pathfinder / Pathfinder First Edition / Advice / Punishing Bad RP All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.