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Author Topic: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions  (Read 56455 times)

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Offline skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #825 on: January 10, 2014, 12:07:23 PM »
Ok here goes. My concept is a game in a fantasy Asian setting with technology at roughly 1920's to 40's level. An ageing empire has split apart and amidst the chaos and breakdown of order two major factions are battling for supremacy. The players would be part of a pirate faction using the situation to their advantage.
Player characters can take any background, age, race, gender or sexuality. As long as you pull your weight the pirates don't care about much else. So that makes it easier for people to live with and join into. Setting up locations should be as simple as a thread for each. Pretty much anything will go, they are pirates after all, rules don't apply to them.

I figured that in terms of controlling the plot freeform would work fine. I can take the faction leader role and steer that way or feed information to reliable characters to influence indirectly. So far so good.

My problem comes in that I consider a big aspect of the pirate clan is that they're, well pirates. In particular I see them as raiders using relatively small, but heavily armed fast boats for raiding and smuggling runs. My problem is how to control the game when the characters leave the base? Freeform with missions, just seems like a recipe for players breezing to any set objectives without opposition, which would get boring fast. On the other hand I'm reluctant to try to add to much structure or systems to it.
I was thinking of providing a briefing, letting the characters freeform and then have a response from the enemies perspective to keep things interesting and stop players from having things all their own way. Obviously the briefing could also be unreliable or not completely accurate to throw a curveball from the very start.

These are my thoughts so far and I would definitely value opinions as to the quality of the basic idea and if my thoughts on making it work have worked for anyone before.

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #826 on: January 10, 2014, 12:14:49 PM »
  • How much weird elements do you want for your pirates? Can they be hidden aliens, mutants, or whatever?
  • Do you want PCs to be threatened by actual risk during missions, or only encounter as much risk and as much failures as the player sees fit?

Offline skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #827 on: January 10, 2014, 12:33:46 PM »
1.Well I was going to keep it at a strictly humans only level, so no mutants, superpowers and no alien player characters. Only because they don't seem to fit with the setting really, not because I have anything against them. I was planning on using some fantasy tech, like tesla coil based weaponry, storm generators and some tech that wasn't necessarily available at the time like radar, homing torpedoes, that kind of stuff. I was going to including a supernatural element, but I hadn't totally fleshed that idea out. It seems to fit with the mystic element of the Far East and the history of this crumbling country that provides the setting.

2. I was think definitely at risk, but not so far as to actually kill them. I figured NPC boat crew members could actually snuff it instead, but war is messy, people get hurt, prized possessions like boats get destroyed or damaged. I wanted to reflect that if I could manage to.

Offline Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #828 on: January 10, 2014, 12:52:11 PM »
First of all, I think it's a buttery nipple, but I could be wrong.

I have a small piece of advice with respect to your start point.

If you want the game to have a small number of players, unless they are all invited players you know personally, do not start with a briefing.

I'm speaking from experience having tried to run a similar game three times in the past. If you start with a briefing you will end with the briefing as all the players drop out one by one. Start with the action.  Do the briefing OOC and start with a raid or something.

The only reason not to do this is if the game is to be sandbox and you allow the players to create their own action. If you do this, however, you will need to use a system, and I can't help you with that!

If you intend to have open recruitment, and want a lot of players, be prepared for disappointment, too. In my experience if you get ten players interested, you will get six actually play. If your idea presentation is good and the idea is interesting, you may get twenty or thirty interested. You will get ten to fifteen actual players out of that!

You need to have a way to get rid of drop-outs and bring in newcomers, in the middle of the action.

Thufir's question 2 is the key one regarding freeform or system.

And finally, totally irrelevant to the above...

A long slow comfortable screw against a wall.

This is a cocktail of cocktails.

1 shot Sloe Gin
1 shot Southern Comfort
1 shot Vodka
1 shot Galliano
To top Orange Juice

The name comes from:
Long being either a long drink (as opposed to a short) or possibly that the drink is a variant on a Long Island Iced Tea.
Slow a phonetic variant of Sloe which is a berry that grows wild in the UK and is used to make Sloe Gin
Comfortable, from Southern Comfort
Screw from Screwdriver, which is Vodka and Orange Juice
Wall from Harvey Wallbanger which is a screwdriver with Galliano added.

Yep, I'm a mine of trivia!

I have to say i sounds awful

Offline skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #829 on: January 10, 2014, 01:37:57 PM »
I could be be wrong too. It was a long time ago that I was offered one at university in fact.

I hadn't thought of putting a briefing in an OOC. That's a good idea.
As for recruiting I thought pirates would be open to just fitting new recruits in as they turn up. So I was hope to just keep touting for new characters.

The cocktail sounds lethal. I favour mint juleps myself.

Offline Moraline

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #830 on: January 10, 2014, 03:42:27 PM »
Our nipples are slippery here in Canada but I wouldn't' be opposed to making them buttery either.  Yes, I'm still talking about drinks... maybe.

Anyways, don't mind me. I just came for a drink. Please carry on the conversation.   :D


Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #831 on: January 10, 2014, 04:08:04 PM »
o.o

Offline Moraline

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #832 on: January 10, 2014, 04:24:22 PM »
Quote
~ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slippery_Nipple

"The Slippery Nipple is a layered cocktail shooter most commonly composed of Baileys Irish Cream and Sambuca. When prepared properly, the ingredients remain in two distinct visible layers due to the relative densities of the ingredients."




Quote
~ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cocksucking_Cowboy

A Cocksucking Cowboy (also known as a Cowboy and Butterball) is a layered shooter made from one part cold Butterscotch Schnapps with two parts of Baileys Irish Cream,[1] making it 32 proof (16% ABV). The Baileys is poured off the back of a bar spoon so it "floats" on top of the schnapps in a shot glass. Some alternative recipes reverse the proportions, specifying 2 parts Schnapps to 1 part Irish cream.[2]

The drink is also known as a Buttery Nipple or Slippery Nipple #4, though the Buttery Nipple is often thought to be composed of 1⁄2 Butterscotch and 1⁄2 Irish Cream. Note that Baileys does not have to be used; any type of Irish Cream will do.

Quote
Slippery Nipple #4 (Buttery Nipple)
Quantity    Ingredient
1/2 oz.    Baileys Irish Cream
1/2 oz.    Butterscotch Schnapps

    Glass type: Shot
    Directions: Pour schnapps first and then float the Baileys on top.



Offline skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #833 on: January 10, 2014, 04:43:15 PM »
It appears that both I and Chrystal were correct then. Incidentally I apologise for filling the place with slippery nipples and cocksucking cowboys. I came to ask questions not bring up double entendres.

Offline Moraline

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #834 on: January 10, 2014, 04:52:47 PM »
It appears that both I and Chrystal were correct then. Incidentally I apologise for filling the place with slippery nipples and cocksucking cowboys. I came to ask questions not bring up double entendres.
Pfft, it's a Lounge with Bartenders.. Pouring drinks, getting toasty, and talking GM'ing is what we do!

Have another round and tell us how it's going?

Offline Aiden

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #835 on: January 10, 2014, 04:55:04 PM »
My game on E just turned two years old and it is running strong. It has been rough a few times but it is going strong and I have a recruitment coming up for the next IC school year!

SOOOO I'll take a bottle of whiskey!

Offline Moraline

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #836 on: January 10, 2014, 04:57:34 PM »
My game on E just turned two years old and it is running strong. It has been rough a few times but it is going strong and I have a recruitment coming up for the next IC school year!

SOOOO I'll take a bottle of whiskey!
Gratz! It's awesome that you've got a game that you love playing so much.

I used to run a few role playing forums like that, all dedicated to a single massive RP that went on for years.  I find these days that I just can't get into something for more then a few months before things drag me away or I lose interest. It's not the games, it's just me.

What do you love some much about your game? What keeps it fresh and fun for you?

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #837 on: January 10, 2014, 04:58:51 PM »
My game on E just turned two years old and it is running strong. It has been rough a few times but it is going strong and I have a recruitment coming up for the next IC school year!

SOOOO I'll take a bottle of whiskey!
Ooooo *big excited eyes*

Offline Aiden

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #838 on: January 10, 2014, 05:07:22 PM »
The writers and the characters they make.

Its a game in the "Potterverse"

But the books (with reason) only focused on one story line. HaF had multiple story lines, no one "main" character. 

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #839 on: January 10, 2014, 05:14:58 PM »
*nods* The very first RP I ever joined was a Hogwarts group. I still have the same character who I've developed and played from a 11 year old to a 20 year animagus Auror. I've run and helped run several Hogwarts groups in my time.since that first one I joined. I was always amazed at what people came up with. Sometimes it was a good amazed. Sometimes it was a bad amazed. 

Having that ability to explore different story lines within the universe has always been fun. I've done Maraunder's era, just after the books era, Harry's kids era, and AU where HP doesn't exist. Each one gives a new excitement and imagination to the 'verse

Offline Josietta

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #840 on: January 10, 2014, 05:16:45 PM »
I could be be wrong too. It was a long time ago that I was offered one at university in fact.

I hadn't thought of putting a briefing in an OOC. That's a good idea.
As for recruiting I thought pirates would be open to just fitting new recruits in as they turn up. So I was hope to just keep touting for new characters.

The cocktail sounds lethal. I favour mint juleps myself.

I wanted to comment on this in particular.

It is exceedingly hard to get new players involved in a game that has action going already. A lot of players find it difficult to find their footing in an already established game, unless its the sort of game that has "time shifts" that allows for ease of entry. Such as Hogwarts and the school year changes or our XMen group that has "issues" with each big plot that moves along.  Another thing to keep in mind when running games that are hoping to go big, is keeping a record of events. Keep a page with synopsis of events so players don't have to read through every single IC post to see whats going on.  Your best shot at keeping a game going and adding in new players later, is to keep the game flow easy and have opportunities of ease in entry.  Organization is key. And having everything in a place everyone can easily read it without having TOO much to read is also important.

and I like buttery nipples too. :P  and Apple martini's. And long island iced tea.. and midori sours... and lemon drops... need i go on? :P *is a lil bit of a lush*

Pstt.. Its Kendra and Aiden's game Hogwarts a Future (as advertised in the banner that flashes on the screen time to time.. and in a few peoples signatures I believe). Not just his :P  If she were here she'd be sure to point that out ;P   

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #841 on: January 10, 2014, 05:25:29 PM »
I might suggest a wiki page with all that information. That is, to me, the most easily managed form of organizing such things. Assuming you know how to work the wiki at least. It's not hard, once you get the hang of if.

Offline Josietta

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #842 on: January 10, 2014, 05:50:45 PM »
This is true. It isn't too hard to do but it is time consuming. I find coding in wiki much more time consuming that having it all on an info thread. But the wiki is more organized too. I know when Lunar and I first started our Shadowrun Game, I spent 3 months doing the wiki for it.  Thats alot of time to put into something that we didn't see through due to lack of interest and player issues. We ended up passing it down to another GM and I think it fell flat not long after that.

Just something to keep in mind as well. If you plan on it being a long haul, as we had, then its definitely something to do. If you have the time and devotion. Otherwise linking different threads in a single thread works just as well.

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #843 on: January 10, 2014, 09:47:02 PM »
1.Well I was going to keep it at a strictly humans only level, so no mutants, superpowers and no alien player characters. Only because they don't seem to fit with the setting really, not because I have anything against them. I was planning on using some fantasy tech, like tesla coil based weaponry, storm generators and some tech that wasn't necessarily available at the time like radar, homing torpedoes, that kind of stuff. I was going to including a supernatural element, but I hadn't totally fleshed that idea out. It seems to fit with the mystic element of the Far East and the history of this crumbling country that provides the setting.

2. I was think definitely at risk, but not so far as to actually kill them. I figured NPC boat crew members could actually snuff it instead, but war is messy, people get hurt, prized possessions like boats get destroyed or damaged. I wanted to reflect that if I could manage to.
Get a FATE game, or even better, find Fate Accelerated edition. The actual rules, when you remove the examples, are a few pages long and are totally free, although with the examples, the page count jumps tenfold.
Still, FAE allows for your weirdness level, and when the characters are defeated, it doesn't mean death, so you can do it exactly like you intended ;D!

Offline skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #844 on: January 11, 2014, 02:45:13 AM »
Wow, so much good advice. I have a lot to think about now. Thank you all so much, I really appreciate you taking time to help me. And yes Thufir I am weird, but I've been like that for 30 years, so it would be a shame to break the habit of a life time and start being conventional. :D

Offline Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #845 on: January 11, 2014, 04:09:00 AM »
I wanted to comment on this in particular.

It is exceedingly hard to get new players involved in a game that has action going already. A lot of players find it difficult to find their footing in an already established game, unless its the sort of game that has "time shifts" that allows for ease of entry.

Another option is to have different crews with different"targets", "Missions", or whatever. I'm not sure but this may be the same or similar to what Josietta is talking about with the X-Men game...

Basically, you appoint "sub-captains" - who would be your Co-GMs if the game goes Big Group. Each of these players would probably have a characer in your original crew and create a new character to captain their new crew when they get "promoted". Your biggest problem then is making sure the new pirate ship doesn't do anything you don't want it to. But if it were me I would have a thread called "Council Of Captains" where the co-GMs can discuss plots and the like, and the rest of the crews can listen in and make suggestions.

But, in all honesty, your biggest challenge is going to be getting players who want to enjoy a pirate adventure game with some smut, rather than players who want to write smut in a pirate setting. The number of times I've had players join enthusiastically, write a sex scene and vanish.... *eyeroll*

I think it is important from the start to make it clear how much smut is expected.

My game on E just turned two years old and it is running strong. It has been rough a few times but it is going strong and I have a recruitment coming up for the next IC school year!

SOOOO I'll take a bottle of whiskey!

Congrats, Aiden.

Didn't HaF go "Big Group" within a month or two of starting? I'm not really into Potterverse myself.

I might suggest a wiki page with all that information. That is, to me, the most easily managed form of organizing such things. Assuming you know how to work the wiki at least. It's not hard, once you get the hang of if.

To create a wiki page you need someone who knows how, or you need to figure out how. I probably could, but I've not taken the time to learn it. I do use the wiki for my character and location pics, which is easy.

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #846 on: January 11, 2014, 11:53:50 AM »
There's some easy guides on how to work the wiki out there, this being one of them.Then it always helps to have a go to of somebody who does know how to use the wiki. I've actually taught the person who taught me a thing or two :p I'm not grand with wiki magic. But I can work the basics
This is true. It isn't too hard to do but it is time consuming. I find coding in wiki much more time consuming that having it all on an info thread. But the wiki is more organized too. I know when Lunar and I first started our Shadowrun Game, I spent 3 months doing the wiki for it.  Thats alot of time to put into something that we didn't see through due to lack of interest and player issues. We ended up passing it down to another GM and I think it fell flat not long after that.

Just something to keep in mind as well. If you plan on it being a long haul, as we had, then its definitely something to do. If you have the time and devotion. Otherwise linking different threads in a single thread works just as well.
Three months? That seems long. I did the one for my Star Trek game in two days >.> But mine is rather simplified.

But that is true. It's usually best to get the game underway first then if it's gets the interest and activity, make a wiki. Otherwise, a single thread with information works just as well, or sometimes better.

Offline Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #847 on: January 11, 2014, 12:21:55 PM »
The thing to bare in mind with respect to information threads is that you do have a limited number available - two threads for each player. Generally speaking that is more than enough, but if you intend to have repeated "missions" or "events" which you put in separate threads, then you do need to keep track.

One thing I have never been clear on is exactly how that number should be worked out. Is it two for each player who submits a character, or two for each active player? If the former, then do the characters of players who subsequently decline to post count? If the latter, then having created ten threads for five active players if one player drops out do we have to close two threads?

Or is it based upon the maximum number of active players?

In all honesty it has never been an issue, as I have never come close to exceeding the number of threads for a game, and when a game begins to haemorrhage players, that's usually the death-knell anyway.

Offline Aiden

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #848 on: January 11, 2014, 12:38:54 PM »


Congrats, Aiden.

Didn't HaF go "Big Group" within a month or two of starting? I'm not really into Potterverse myself.



I think it was less than a month, people were really fired up to post.

Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #849 on: January 11, 2014, 01:09:37 PM »
The thing to bare in mind with respect to information threads is that you do have a limited number available - two threads for each player. Generally speaking that is more than enough, but if you intend to have repeated "missions" or "events" which you put in separate threads, then you do need to keep track.
*Nods* Which is why I like using OOC and recruiting threads for information rather than having a separate one.
Quote

One thing I have never been clear on is exactly how that number should be worked out. Is it two for each player who submits a character, or two for each active player? If the former, then do the characters of players who subsequently decline to post count? If the latter, then having created ten threads for five active players if one player drops out do we have to close two threads?

Or is it based upon the maximum number of active players?

In all honesty it has never been an issue, as I have never come close to exceeding the number of threads for a game, and when a game begins to haemorrhage players, that's usually the death-knell anyway.
I always took it as two per "active" player but figured if enough dropped that we'd be over the limit (which I've never seen happen) nobody would make a fuss over it. Especially of the game was still pretty active