You are either not logged in or not registered with our community. Click here to register.
 
December 09, 2016, 05:25:19 PM

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length

Click here if you are having problems.
Default Wide Screen Beige Lilac Rainbow Black & Blue October Send us your theme!

Hark!  The Herald!
Holiday Issue 2016

Wiki Blogs Dicebot

Author Topic: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions  (Read 56562 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline PeacethatPowerbrings

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #425 on: April 07, 2012, 09:28:33 AM »
It's usually my reason to not have a character ingame.(the above discussion) while I am not favourtising I am a rather good builder and know all the corner and edge rules from all the current allowed books, so even if I don't favourtise I am often accused of it. I think the best character for a DM to play is semi comic relief, ideally someone that can 'accidently' discover plot hooks or help the party move along in the right direction if they loose trail.

A DM is sort of definitionally more involved than a GM needs to be. While a GM can be merely administrative, a DM cannot, which means that DMs have PCs is more problematic by default.

Offline Deva

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #426 on: April 07, 2012, 09:32:07 AM »
Really, in most games the borders between DM and GM are fluid, depending on how active the players are.

Online TheGlyphstone

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #427 on: April 07, 2012, 09:33:30 AM »
A DM is sort of definitionally more involved than a GM needs to be. While a GM can be merely administrative, a DM cannot, which means that DMs have PCs is more problematic by default.
Uh...there is literally no definitional difference between Dungeon Master and Game Master, save that Dungeon Master is the Game-Master appelation for a specific system. Unless that's what you mean - for you, DMPC implies a system game and GMPC implies freeform. I myself consider DM and GM to be interchangable terms.

Offline Deva

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #428 on: April 07, 2012, 09:35:16 AM »
Some people define DM as a guiding and controlling instance(DnD), GM as a controlling instance(freeform).. but fluid borders, as I saids.

Offline PeacethatPowerbrings

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #429 on: April 07, 2012, 09:43:20 AM »
Oops.  :P I failed to define my terms there.

What I should say, is that, in a system game, the DM/GM, is definitionally more involved more involved in the setting/plot/and NPCs, than a non-system DM/GM can be. The role of the DM/GM depends a lot on the system in question, but in general, unlike in free-form games, their level of involvement is usually necessarily greater than other players.

Some people define DM as a guiding and controlling instance(DnD), GM as a controlling instance(freeform).. but fluid borders, as I saids.

Yes, and this is sort of how I do it, but that isn't really important to the point, as long as you now know what I mean.

Offline The Golden Touch

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #430 on: April 07, 2012, 10:51:43 AM »
-sinks into a chair and nurses a tall glass of Jack and Coke-

Sanity gone- check, Busy- check, great game- completely worth the headaches.

Online Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #431 on: April 07, 2012, 02:07:40 PM »
Well, yes and no. Your statement is about what the terms ought to mean. While I agree, in general, with that statement, I think that the salient point for the discussion is how PCs and NPCs should be used, or rather, when or if it is a appropriate for a GM to have a PC. I think that my solution on that front still holds, given your definition.
Yes, your solution is rather close.

BTW, I admit I don't see why it would be worse for a GM to have a PC in a system game, as it seems you imply. To me, a GM is a GM, whether he or she is using a system, and most system games other than D&D seem to agree by calling the GM simply a GM ;).

Offline PeacethatPowerbrings

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #432 on: April 07, 2012, 02:17:33 PM »
Yes, your solution is rather close.

BTW, I admit I don't see why it would be worse for a GM to have a PC in a system game, as it seems you imply. To me, a GM is a GM, whether he or she is using a system, and most system games other than D&D seem to agree by calling the GM simply a GM ;).

Not all GMs are the same, though, hence the reason for the GM/DM thing. A GM in one game, is not going to be doing the same job as the GM in another. In a system game, it generally falls to the GM to be controlling NPCs, creating the plot, or at least enabling the players to go do what they wish to. I would say that this situation makes a GM having a PC more problematic in a system game, because, as the GM control over the world increases, it becomes harder to do both fairly. Not saying it can't be done.

On the sliding scale of GM control over a game, systems are, usually, to the side where the GM is has greater control. This would also not be to say that non-system games are in anyway less suspectible to the problems, but the range of GM involvement is much more varied, I think.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #433 on: April 07, 2012, 02:26:20 PM »
-sinks into a chair and nurses a tall glass of Jack and Coke-

Sanity gone- check, Busy- check, great game- completely worth the headaches.

If you mean what I think you meant, then I agree totally! Of course if you don't mean what I think you meant, then I shall be forced to disagree...

But then if you think what I mean isn't what I actually me, then what I think you meant isn't what you thought you meant and so what I think you thought you meant is different from what I think you thought you meant.

Is that clear?



Uh, yeah, sorry...

Back on topic:

I am just about managing to follow the discussion, and while I agree in principal with the statement that it is a bad idea for a GM (or DM) to have a player character, this does not in any way change the fact that probably 90% (at least) of freeform GMs in E have a player character that accompanies the party, shares in the spoils, joins in the orgy, shares the food, fights along side, etc... And until I read this discussion it had actually never occurred to me not to do so.

Most of us are arguing from our own experiences. Thufir, by your own admission, you rarely if ever participate in freeform games. I have never participated in a system game except for a brief dalliance with D&D when I was a teenager, a LOOOOOONG time ago.

I suspect that the "rule" we are defining here is different for system and freeform, and I think someone already said as much.

For FtF system roleplay like D&D, the DM sits behind his screen with all his manuals and books and dice. He knows what the capabilities of every NPC monster are, and knows exactly how to kill them. It is therefore not acceptable for him to also have a "player character" that he favours over all the NPCs.

For a system game played on the forum, I think the same should be true, although I really can't comment as I don't know.

But, for a freeform game, while the GM may or may not control all the NPCs (see my last post), it could well be desirable that (s)he have a character with the group - most especially in a plot-based game. What I mean is, imagine a group of characters who have all been recruited to retrieve a Sacred McGuffin in order to save The Kingdom from The Evil. The players are dumped into a sandbox environment and mill around for a bit, wondering just exactly what they are supposed to do to get the McGuffin. Now, put the GM's character in there with them as leader of the party, and immediately someone knows which direction they need to head, and what to expect when they get there!

If the GM secretly imparts the knowledge to a player, that player has, effectively been raised to the status of co-GM by virtue of this arcane knowledge that said player's character would not have.

The only other way I can see of doing this would be to have the GM provide a map, compass and instructions on McGuffin Retrieval left carelessly lying around...

Offline The Golden Touch

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #434 on: April 07, 2012, 02:28:58 PM »
I honestly understood nothing of your post that was directed at me.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #435 on: April 07, 2012, 02:42:58 PM »
Sorry... I'm in a weird mood.

Online Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #436 on: April 07, 2012, 03:18:30 PM »
Not all GMs are the same, though, hence the reason for the GM/DM thing. A GM in one game, is not going to be doing the same job as the GM in another. In a system game, it generally falls to the GM to be controlling NPCs, creating the plot, or at least enabling the players to go do what they wish to. I would say that this situation makes a GM having a PC more problematic in a system game, because, as the GM control over the world increases, it becomes harder to do both fairly. Not saying it can't be done.

On the sliding scale of GM control over a game, systems are, usually, to the side where the GM is has greater control. This would also not be to say that non-system games are in anyway less suspectible to the problems, but the range of GM involvement is much more varied, I think.
Let's just say it'd be easier to agree to disagree here ;).
(Just consideer this. The GM can be surprised by the players either way, but in a system game you can also, if rarely, be surprised by the dice. Which one has the greater control?
Again, agreeing to disagree is fine, and probably more productive than a long discussion on such a side-topic).

I am just about managing to follow the discussion, and while I agree in principal with the statement that it is a bad idea for a GM (or DM) to have a player character, this does not in any way change the fact that probably 90% (at least) of freeform GMs in E have a player character that accompanies the party, shares in the spoils, joins in the orgy, shares the food, fights along side, etc... And until I read this discussion it had actually never occurred to me not to do so.
I never said they don't do that. Whether I consider this a good idea is another matter.
The only time I consider it appropriate to actually have a PC along with the party is when you'd expect a GM rotation. This way, your PC can fit NPC roles while you're running, and join more naturally when someone else steps to run the game. Said player's PC now becomes an NPC for the duration.

Quote
Most of us are arguing from our own experiences. Thufir, by your own admission, you rarely if ever participate in freeform games. I have never participated in a system game except for a brief dalliance with D&D when I was a teenager, a LOOOOOONG time ago.
While I seldom participate in freeform games today, I have literally years of experience with freeform, as player and GM alike :P. Maybe you could still allow me to claim that I might actually have an idea how both freeform and system games work? I didn't know we have to present our "roleplaying biographies", though.
Also, I explicitly don't argue from my own experience only. I just hate using credentials as an argument.

Spoiler: Click to Show/Hide
Sure, it's the base, but please, add to it a score books on "best GMing practices", both general and per genre, roleplaying advice to GMs in a few scores of books with different games, probably well over a hundred articles on Internet written from GMs willing to share their experience, and literally thousands of posts discussing it with other GMs on roleplaying forums!
Yes, the list tops several thousand pages. Since I've been roleplaying for years, often as a GM, it only made sense to take it seriously 8-)!

Quote
I suspect that the "rule" we are defining here is different for system and freeform, and I think someone already said as much.
And I believe that's an erroneous conclusion. A GM has pretty much the same tasks regardless of system or freeform.
Actually, freeform is just several systems with different, unwritten rules.

Quote
For FtF system roleplay like D&D, the DM sits behind his screen with all his manuals and books and dice.
He knows what the capabilities of every NPC monster are, and knows exactly how to kill them.
In D&D, maybe, but that has little resemblence to the way I GM a system game. Maybe it's because I dont run D&D, or something else, don't know. Honestly, it'd take too long to list it, and it's more useful for the RP theory thread. Here, we're talking whether a GM should have an NPC. And it seems you, me, PtPB and TG accept the same opinion.
I fail to see why we're still discussing what are, essentially, details.

Quote
It is therefore not acceptable for him to also have a "player character" that he favours over all the NPCs.
Yes.

Quote
For a system game played on the forum, I think the same should be true, although I really can't comment as I don't know.
Then allow me to say it's the same.

Quote
But, for a freeform game, while the GM may or may not control all the NPCs (see my last post), it could well be desirable that (s)he have a character with the group - most especially in a plot-based game. What I mean is, imagine a group of characters who have all been recruited to retrieve a Sacred McGuffin in order to save The Kingdom from The Evil. The players are dumped into a sandbox environment and mill around for a bit, wondering just exactly what they are supposed to do to get the McGuffin. Now, put the GM's character in there with them as leader of the party, and immediately someone knows which direction they need to head, and what to expect when they get there!

If the GM secretly imparts the knowledge to a player, that player has, effectively been raised to the status of co-GM by virtue of this arcane knowledge that said player's character would not have.
Why, I've seen that same situation in quite a few system and freeform games alike ;D!
And almost invariably, it's a bad idea.
See, if the GM is leading the party via his character, he's not only controlling the environment and presenting them with problems, he's also the one providing them with the solutions to said problems. The players are often left to hop through the hoops he throws them, or they're punished by getting nowhere.
Many, many players end up feeling that effectively, they're not players, they're puppets or actors. Except unlike actors, they aren't getting paid, and have to guess the script.
Cue players dropping out of the game. As I said, seen this exact situation both in freeform and system games.

Quote
The only other way I can see of doing this would be to have the GM provide a map, compass and instructions on McGuffin Retrieval left carelessly lying around...
I'd suggest providing hints instead, and letting the players to interpret them. Again, works just fine in my games >:)!

Offline LunarSage

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #437 on: April 07, 2012, 04:01:55 PM »
So what you're saying, Thufir is that the GM of a freeform game shouldn't actually get to play in their own game?  Just to clarify your position there.  Because to me, playing a PC is how I get enjoyment out of any game, whether it be a game that I GM or not.  The work of GMing is just that... work.  I don't want to work nonstop with absolutely no fulfillment. 

I fail to see why a GM running a PC in a freeform sandbox game is a bad thing.

Offline The Golden Touch

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #438 on: April 07, 2012, 04:10:06 PM »
I think this has become a circle of the same opinions. Furthermore, no one runs their group games, system or freeform, the same as the next GM/DM.

New topic?

Offline Josietta

  • ♥ The Sweet Lil Heartbreaker of E ◦ Princessa ◦ BabyCakes ◦ | Minx | SisterKitten | ~ MC Wifey ~ ✨ Ely's Bestie Babe ✨ ♥ Jewel ♥ ֍ Babygirl ֍
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2008
  • Location: ♥ HawkGirl -- GO SEAHAWKS!! ♥
  • Gender: Female
  • ~ His Kitten ~
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #439 on: April 07, 2012, 04:17:16 PM »
How would you all go about filling in spots for canon characters that were once filled but the original players dropped out?  I've had a few players drop the same character a couple of times. (Most of it was due to RL commitments and lack of RP time but they had to drop and I had to refill the spot due to the character being a big part of the RP.)   The game is still moving forward at a decent pace and others are having fun but I have noticed I keep more male players than females and I would like to even out the relationship scales a bit more. Even getting a lesbian or gay couple involved would work. But most females don't stick to it like the males. Ideas? Relate-able experiences?  This is a semi-sandbox game with smatterings of plot in and around, but mostly RP in a sandbox style.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #440 on: April 07, 2012, 04:23:05 PM »
I think this has become a circle of the same opinions. Furthermore, no one runs their group games, system or freeform, the same as the next GM/DM.

New topic?

Can't think of one...

How would you all go about filling in spots for canon characters that were once filled but the original players dropped out?  I've had a few players drop the same character a couple of times. (Most of it was due to RL commitments and lack of RP time but they had to drop and I had to refill the spot due to the character being a big part of the RP.)   The game is still moving forward at a decent pace and others are having fun but I have noticed I keep more male players than females and I would like to even out the relationship scales a bit more. Even getting a lesbian or gay couple involved would work. But most females don't stick to it like the males. Ideas? Relate-able experiences?  This is a semi-sandbox game with smatterings of plot in and around, but mostly RP in a sandbox style.


I think, if they are Canon characters, I'd just open a new recruitment thread advertising for those specific roles.

Offline The Golden Touch

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #441 on: April 07, 2012, 04:28:08 PM »
I agree. Opening recruitment specifically for canons could work well. I know I've had to drop all but a few of my prior commitments, and even then it's hard to keep up. Maybe see if anyone wants to take on another character? Else turn the canons NPC for the most part.

Offline AndyZ

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #442 on: April 07, 2012, 06:17:43 PM »
Just read through everything.  I think.  May have only skimmed some stuff.  I meant to take better notes so I could make comments on things that came up months and months ago, but forgot.

Caeli, it may interest you to know that I've seen quite a few people use the term "Mary Sue" in regards to male characters, and with two specific instances in mind, male writers.  I don't personally use the term because I find it too catch-all, though, and agree that "Wish Fulfillment" is better.

If it's not too late to give my GMPC suggestions, I'd like to offer the following:

My compromise involving this method is to play a character who is much more interactive than your average NPC, but who will play little part in the actual plot.  When I was running a monster hunter game, I played a semi-crazy girl who constantly stayed in the safehouse, occasionally providing tidbits of prophetic wisdom.  In my "Hellboy/Cyberpunk" game with the BESM setting that I'm currently running, I'm playing a girl whose mind is trapped in a computer and who can send out various drones for reconnaissance and computer hacking.

The major problem with GMPCs arises, I think, from the "Chosen One" scenario.  Group RPGs should not have a chosen one, because if you're not playing the chosen one, you're not the star.  Chosen groups are fine, but the players need to be the star of the game in all aspects.  And of course, if it's a solo GM game (one person GMing while the other just plays a single character) that single character can be the Chosen One.

This is probably significantly truer (or is it "more true?"  What's the right English usage?) in system games than in RP.  Some people will find some appeal to this, but you're really better off trying to let each character shine in some individual way.

If you remember that every one of the PCs needs to be important, and your own character needs to be less important than the PCs.  This leaves plenty of room for actually playing, because you have any number of NPCs which can keep things going.

Now, granted that sandbox games put the lie to this, but I've had games become sandbox when they weren't meant to be.  People are still posting in the monster hunter game even after I already wrote up the epilogue, just because they wanted to keep going with their characters even though I let the game shut down because they were the only two left.

If you're running a pure sandbox, you may or may not want to have an NPC who administrates everything.  Certainly a High Queen Empress is going to shine more than the other characters, maybe players are alright with that, maybe not.  In that case, you just have to make sure that the characters are free to meet up and chat with each other even if you aren't around.

The KoDT example that always stuck with me was when they were playing Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and the GM played Buffy.  The rest just kinda stood around, watching, as Buffy did her thing.  One of them commented, "This is like being the torchbearer."  Another said, "Torchbearer?  I'm the one holding the flashlight!  I am the torchbearer!"

I'm really not good at avoiding rambling today, I guess (sorry!), but it shows the overarching theme of keeping NPCs on all the menial tasks and letting PCs be awesome, whenever possible.  It's very easy to see how in a game with rank, where someone is the Captain, that can be pretty much impossible to do.

I think I'd suggest with such games that, if you're going to have a Captain, you don't want to see the Captain too much off the bridge.  Although I have little understanding of real-life rank, in TNG, Picard actually seems to do a lot to isolate himself from most of the crew.  In the few times when he can be seen in the local drinking hole, everyone actually pauses and thinks it rather odd.  I have no idea if this is actually part of RL or Starfleet regulations or not, though I'd be curious to know.

I think that if I ran a game with a Captain, I'd want someone that I trust, as well as someone with whom I can give either PMs (online) or hand signals (tabletop) in order to subtly steer the direction of the game.  Few things in my games would be quite as valuable as being able to have the PC Captain decide, "You know, guys, on second thought, let's NOT steer the ship into that black hole.  I don't think it's really an illusion after all."  Having that kind of quasi-GM would be fascinating to see work in action.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #443 on: April 07, 2012, 06:39:49 PM »
Okay, I have a slightly different question, but sort of related.

Suppose in a story-driven game, you want your group of heroes to contain a traitor, or perhaps to have a character that is more than he/she appears to be? How would one go about doing this?

My own thought would be to choose a player - preferably one that you trust not to blab the information in the OOC thread, and PM them to say "How would you like to have a special character...?"

I have a couple of specific scenarios in mind, but I will mention one of them here. It's a game I have tried to start twice and both times I got a dozen people say they were interested and then only three actual character sheets. (I still want to know why people do that).

In this particular game, that I called Cluedo after the board game, I did have my own player character, but she was to be murdered fairly early on... Thus effectively becoming a Non Playable Character.... (lol) The point of the game was for every player in their to have a motive for murder except one, and he/she would be the detective who would solve the case in classic Agatha Christie style.

I was going to choose the murderer based upon criteria known only to myself which may or may not have included dice rolls - thus giving everyone a fair shot and a motive to produce a decent character.

I suspect the game failed twice because everyone wanted to kill me but only one person was going to get the chance... None the less it was a sound idea and I may just try it again some time.

But obviously, the identity of the murderer is known only two two characters, and one of those is dead. (The other being the murderer).

PMing the chosen player seems to be the best option in this case. But it's fairly easy, because everyone knows there is going to be a murder - it's in the recruitment thread!

My other idea is a little less well formed but involves a character within a group of adventurers turning out to be the "McGuffin's Keeper" in disguise - rather like the cowardly lion suddenly turning into The Wizard of Oz. This important nugget of information would need to be kept from the adventurers until they neared their destination. As pointed out previously, it wouldn't work for the GM to control that character.

How would one go about selecting a player, telling them, and if they refuse the role, what do you do?

Offline Josietta

  • ♥ The Sweet Lil Heartbreaker of E ◦ Princessa ◦ BabyCakes ◦ | Minx | SisterKitten | ~ MC Wifey ~ ✨ Ely's Bestie Babe ✨ ♥ Jewel ♥ ֍ Babygirl ֍
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2008
  • Location: ♥ HawkGirl -- GO SEAHAWKS!! ♥
  • Gender: Female
  • ~ His Kitten ~
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #444 on: April 07, 2012, 09:43:52 PM »
I agree. Opening recruitment specifically for canons could work well. I know I've had to drop all but a few of my prior commitments, and even then it's hard to keep up. Maybe see if anyone wants to take on another character? Else turn the canons NPC for the most part.

I currently do have them as NPCs but when I or my Co GM end up running 4-5 characters (these Canons as well a our own characters) it can get overwhelming. The majority of my players are already running 2 PCs and that is our limit as we don't want people thinning themselves out so to speak. The biggest problem is that a lot of players want to have an option for a PC relationship with other characters and its starting to become a sausage fest so to speak. hehe

I think I'll reopen the recruitment for just females and only for specific canons and see how it goes.



Okay, I have a slightly different question, but sort of related.

Spoiler: Click to Show/Hide
Suppose in a story-driven game, you want your group of heroes to contain a traitor, or perhaps to have a character that is more than he/she appears to be? How would one go about doing this?

My own thought would be to choose a player - preferably one that you trust not to blab the information in the OOC thread, and PM them to say "How would you like to have a special character...?"

I have a couple of specific scenarios in mind, but I will mention one of them here. It's a game I have tried to start twice and both times I got a dozen people say they were interested and then only three actual character sheets. (I still want to know why people do that).

In this particular game, that I called Cluedo after the board game, I did have my own player character, but she was to be murdered fairly early on... Thus effectively becoming a Non Playable Character.... (lol) The point of the game was for every player in their to have a motive for murder except one, and he/she would be the detective who would solve the case in classic Agatha Christie style.

I was going to choose the murderer based upon criteria known only to myself which may or may not have included dice rolls - thus giving everyone a fair shot and a motive to produce a decent character.

I suspect the game failed twice because everyone wanted to kill me but only one person was going to get the chance... None the less it was a sound idea and I may just try it again some time.

But obviously, the identity of the murderer is known only two two characters, and one of those is dead. (The other being the murderer).

PMing the chosen player seems to be the best option in this case. But it's fairly easy, because everyone knows there is going to be a murder - it's in the recruitment thread!

My other idea is a little less well formed but involves a character within a group of adventurers turning out to be the "McGuffin's Keeper" in disguise - rather like the cowardly lion suddenly turning into The Wizard of Oz. This important nugget of information would need to be kept from the adventurers until they neared their destination. As pointed out previously, it wouldn't work for the GM to control that character.
How would one go about selecting a player, telling them, and if they refuse the role, what do you do?

I think this sounds a lot like the infamous non adult Mafia styled games that are typically in Valerians Vault, but given more depth for RP and such than just the usual, I vote we kill him off or what not. 

Maybe you could go with the Mafia games as a template of sorts and add your own twist in? Giving it more depth for interaction and RP than a true "Mafia" styled game is.

Am I making sense with that?


Offline AndyZ

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #445 on: April 08, 2012, 12:16:07 AM »
How would one go about selecting a player, telling them, and if they refuse the role, what do you do?

As far as picking someone, if you're using PMs for the character sheet, I would have one of the parts of the sheet be Motive (if any) and another part be Could your character have done it?  Neither of those would be on the open sheet which other players can see.

From there, you'd look at the motive and see if it seems reasonable to you.  Some people will simply put "No motive" and that they don't want to be the one.  That's cool.

If for some reason, you did pick someone and they didn't want the task, you could simply give acceptance to their choice and pick someone else.  After all, at that point, all they know is that they didn't do it and someone else did, which they know anyway.

I'd also be leery of having only one person playing the detective.  If you're alright with people playing multiple characters, then perhaps anyone who wants to play a suspect could also play a character.  Some meta would occur here, where the detectives didn't really suspect their own players, but that's to be expected and won't cause too much issue.  The actual murderer would either not play a detective (not everyone has to) or else have to give a convincing performance of looking with their own detective.

Alternatively, send in a team of detectives who will communicate with each other, so that if the one and only detective vanishes, the game doesn't kaput.

Oh, another way to choose a person would be a question How would your character have murdered her (if your character even would have)?  Followed with If your character was the murderer, what clues would your character have left behind?  These have to be in PMs as well, but it allows you to pick and choose the most awesome method, as well as pre-established clues.

I personally wouldn't pick someone who didn't leave any clues, but the more obscure, the better.  A single match struck off a pack that uses a special type of wood found only in a particular European city, for instance, if you don't mind some crazy runaround.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #446 on: April 08, 2012, 03:35:40 AM »
I think this sounds a lot like the infamous non adult Mafia styled games that are typically in Valerians Vault, but given more depth for RP and such than just the usual, I vote we kill him off or what not. 

Maybe you could go with the Mafia games as a template of sorts and add your own twist in? Giving it more depth for interaction and RP than a true "Mafia" styled game is.

Am I making sense with that?

Uh, you would be if I knew what Mafia was? I'm assuming it's a game system. I have never tried a system game and probably never will, because I don't have the patience to learn all the rules and then teach them to my players, and more to the point, I don't have any spare money for buying the rule books. YES, I know there are free systems available on line, but then I have to spend the time down-loading all the manuals.

As far as picking someone, if you're using PMs for the character sheet, I would have one of the parts of the sheet be Motive (if any) and another part be Could your character have done it?  Neither of those would be on the open sheet which other players can see.

From there, you'd look at the motive and see if it seems reasonable to you.  Some people will simply put "No motive" and that they don't want to be the one.  That's cool.

That's actually what I did for that particular rp.

Quote
If for some reason, you did pick someone and they didn't want the task, you could simply give acceptance to their choice and pick someone else.  After all, at that point, all they know is that they didn't do it and someone else did, which they know anyway.

True enough. In fact my question about a player refusing related more to the "traitor in their midst" scenario, where the other players don't necessarily know that one of their number is going to turn out to be more than he/she appears!

Quote
I'd also be leery of having only one person playing the detective.  If you're alright with people playing multiple characters, then perhaps anyone who wants to play a suspect could also play a character.  Some meta would occur here, where the detectives didn't really suspect their own players, but that's to be expected and won't cause too much issue.  The actual murderer would either not play a detective (not everyone has to) or else have to give a convincing performance of looking with their own detective.

Alternatively, send in a team of detectives who will communicate with each other, so that if the one and only detective vanishes, the game doesn't kaput.

Now THAT is part of what I did wrong! Thanks! *grins*

Just to summarise that, each player is allowed to create a detective AND a suspect character sheet...

Hmm. I have a better idea! There is NO detective. The police are called, but due to a heavy snow fall, storms at sea, solar flairs, volcanic eruptions in Iceland, butterflies stamping, Indians, train crashes, Mongol invasions and people misinterpreting ancient calendars, they can't get there for at least three days. So our bunch of misfits are left to solve the crime themselves. Each has to provide their alibi to the others, each one suspects all of the others (except the one who did it, who needs to put up a good act).

Now that will work. And if the original murderer drops out, well then we select a new murderer, who discovered the identity of the original murderer and rather than informing everyone else, killed him/her.

My original idea was based a lot upon the classic Hercule Poirot novels by Agatha Christie, where Poirot and a bunch of characters are trapped on a snow-bound train, on a Mediterranean island, or on a river boat cruising up the Nile miles from anywhere. (Murder on the Orient Express, Evil Under The Sun, Death on the Nile).

The participants have until the police arrive to solve the crime, or they will all be arrested.

But why am I typing this here? *goes to open a new recruitment thread*

Offline Josietta

  • ♥ The Sweet Lil Heartbreaker of E ◦ Princessa ◦ BabyCakes ◦ | Minx | SisterKitten | ~ MC Wifey ~ ✨ Ely's Bestie Babe ✨ ♥ Jewel ♥ ֍ Babygirl ֍
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2008
  • Location: ♥ HawkGirl -- GO SEAHAWKS!! ♥
  • Gender: Female
  • ~ His Kitten ~
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #447 on: April 08, 2012, 07:41:46 AM »
Uh, you would be if I knew what Mafia was? I'm assuming it's a game system. I have never tried a system game and probably never will, because I don't have the patience to learn all the rules and then teach them to my players, and more to the point, I don't have any spare money for buying the rule books. YES, I know there are free systems available on line, but then I have to spend the time down-loading all the manuals.



This is what I meant by Mafia games. It's not necessarily a system game, but the board can explain better than I could. :) I'm glad you have found your solution however!

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #448 on: April 08, 2012, 06:37:07 PM »
Okay, so, with that new idea dragging people in like a black hole swallowing star systems (very slowly)...

Here's another question for people that has plagued me since I started GMing here.

The cross-gender player issue.

We all know or have come across players who will only ever play a character of the opposite gender to their own (both male and female). Equally, I'm sure we all know or have come across players who will refuse to play in any game where someone is cross-gender.

I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong on this, but I believe E's policy is that it is down to the individual players to sort it out amicably, and only involve staff if things get out of hand.

My dilemma has always been, do I allow cross-gender players in and risk loosing players who do not wish to play with them, or do I insist on same gender characters and alienate the cross gender players?

As an aside, my personal preference is for same gender, but I try not to let that influence me when it comes to setting up group games. There are occasions when I feel it appropriate to have only same gender characters and others where it matters less, but the criteria are somewhat grey and insubstantial. I think it comes down to what the game involves.

Anyway. Back to my question: What do others do about this issue? I'm sure that some of you don't see it as an issue, and others will say that you never permit cross-gendering. I don't want to get into that. My question is, has anyone else had half their players drop out when they allowed a cross-gender character, and what did you do about it?

Offline Josietta

  • ♥ The Sweet Lil Heartbreaker of E ◦ Princessa ◦ BabyCakes ◦ | Minx | SisterKitten | ~ MC Wifey ~ ✨ Ely's Bestie Babe ✨ ♥ Jewel ♥ ֍ Babygirl ֍
  • Dame
  • Carnite
  • *
  • Join Date: Aug 2008
  • Location: ♥ HawkGirl -- GO SEAHAWKS!! ♥
  • Gender: Female
  • ~ His Kitten ~
  • My Role Play Preferences
  • View My Rolls
  • Referrals: 0
Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #449 on: April 08, 2012, 07:23:34 PM »
In my experience, cross genders, non genders, LGBT, all will go where they feel welcome, just as anyone would regardless of preference.

I personally, would leave it open for any and all, in fairness. Otherwise I feel you risk alienating wonderful writers regardless of there preferences.

If others have issue then they are in direct violation of the oath of drake (group game civility rules).

So to reiterate myself, I would allow anyone. Those that want to play should be able to regardless of preferences.