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Author Topic: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions  (Read 56578 times)

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Offline Ember Star

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #850 on: January 11, 2014, 01:10:45 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 Josietta

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #851 on: January 11, 2014, 01:28:55 PM »
I would say as many as you start with in your game. Mostly because games fluctuate. You are starting your game therefore you will need all the info you can produce to make it effective. If half your players drop 2 weeks in then so be it. You can still recruit for more. But I would definitely go with how many you have accepted as players when you start the first thread. If you have 20 people who sent in character sheets ready to play then you would get 40 threads. This is far more than you'd likely ever need. I've never had to use more than 5 threads to start. And I wouldn't make a ton of IC threads. I find that when you have more than 3 IC threads people get too spread out and lost in the mix and you can't keep track of who is where and others don't want to go searching through tons of RP threads to find out whats going on or who is doing what. Thats just my experience and insight, mind you. Given most small groups that start off they typically have 6-10 players. That gives you 12-20 threads to work with. More than enough.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #852 on: January 11, 2014, 02:44:18 PM »
I would say as many as you start with in your game. Mostly because games fluctuate. You are starting your game therefore you will need all the info you can produce to make it effective. If half your players drop 2 weeks in then so be it. You can still recruit for more. But I would definitely go with how many you have accepted as players when you start the first thread. If you have 20 people who sent in character sheets ready to play then you would get 40 threads. This is far more than you'd likely ever need. I've never had to use more than 5 threads to start. And I wouldn't make a ton of IC threads. I find that when you have more than 3 IC threads people get too spread out and lost in the mix and you can't keep track of who is where and others don't want to go searching through tons of RP threads to find out whats going on or who is doing what. Thats just my experience and insight, mind you. Given most small groups that start off they typically have 6-10 players. That gives you 12-20 threads to work with. More than enough.

That is what I thought.

I've never come close to the limit. The nearest was with a small group of six players where I had an OOC thread, a character thread, a NPC thread, two IC threads for real world and one IC thread for cyberspace. That's half the number allowed.

However, lets assume you have a sandbox game that starts with (say) six players - okay so twelve threads:

1) OOC discussion
2) Approved Characers
3) NPCs
4) Background info
5) Story summary
6) List of locations and descriptions

That leaves six threads available for IC location threads. More than enough? Maybe, until people start wanting private threads to go off and pair up in...

Point being, it's worth considering what non-IC threads and information threads you actually need before you start, and then trimming them as appropriate based on the number of players.

I make it a point, these days, when opening a new OOC thread or recruitment thread to reserve the first few posts for my own use, just by posting the word "reserved". This gives me the option should I need to of going back later and adding info to that post. It means that the initial post can stay relatively compact with the information I placed there to attract players and not expand into unreadability.

Things like my in-house rules, character sheet templates, thread links, post header templates, background info, location descriptions, all these can sit in the reserved posts.

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #853 on: January 11, 2014, 07:19:29 PM »
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
Actually, I'm not commenting on you. "Weirdness levels" is simply one of the dials I keep track of when choosing how to run the game.
Do you need help for finding the FAE rules? If not, did you like them? If you didn't, tell me what you disliked so I could give you another suggestion.


On the subject of number of threads, I create an OOC thread, a thread with approved characters, a main IC thread where I post for all people by marking their location, and one thread per character if they're having private time with another character, be it a PC or an NPC. From then on, all adult scenes they participate in go into their threads. They just have to mark the new scenes when a new scene starts.
I only split people from the IC thread if the other characters aren't supposed to know what they're doing and we aren't playing a game with omniscient narrators.
This means two things. First, they can be involved in adult entertainment, and at the same time playing with everybody else in the IC thread, if we have moved on. Second, if we've got at least 3 players, we break even on threads, and anyone over 3 players gets us spare threads.
Not saying the model is perfect, but you might consider it.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #854 on: January 12, 2014, 03:41:09 AM »
Weirdness level... That's a good way of describing it: How far away from "Normal" are you going. Is it just for male and female humans, will you allow futa, are there supernatural creatures, is there magic, is there advanced technology, is there telepathy and advanced mind-powers?

It all comes very nicely under the heading of "weirdness".

Different GMs use different threads for different purposes. There is, obviously, no right and no wrong way. The only thing I consider somewhat wasteful is creating IC threads in advance that no-one uses.

My own policy is to create a single main IC thread where everyone starts, unless people are specifically starting in different locations. Then as peoplke move to different locations, or go on "missions", I will create threads for them. If a couple request a private thread, I will create that too, but I may well have a single thread for all smut scenes - it's up to the players to know who is with whom, and anyway that's what post tagging is for.

Offline skyre

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #855 on: January 12, 2014, 06:24:26 AM »
I am still checking in and reading what everyone is saying, I'm just having a busy weekend and I haven't had the quiet time to sit down, take it all in and reply. I will come back to you all as soon  as I can. I just didn't want you to think I'd lost interest or wasn't keeping up. I've said it already I know, but thank you everyone for being so helpful and encouraging.

Offline Aiden

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #856 on: January 12, 2014, 09:02:39 AM »
One thing I have begun to utilize in groups games is the "Private threads" to prevent wasting threads on people who pair off and just want to have sex during the RP. It prevents them main threads with being filled with smut (not that smut is a bad thing).

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #857 on: January 12, 2014, 01:28:28 PM »
I am still checking in and reading what everyone is saying, I'm just having a busy weekend and I haven't had the quiet time to sit down, take it all in and reply. I will come back to you all as soon  as I can. I just didn't want you to think I'd lost interest or wasn't keeping up. I've said it already I know, but thank you everyone for being so helpful and encouraging.
Sure, skyre, reply on your own pace!

Weirdness level... That's a good way of describing it: How far away from "Normal" are you going. Is it just for male and female humans, will you allow futa, are there supernatural creatures, is there magic, is there advanced technology, is there telepathy and advanced mind-powers?

It all comes very nicely under the heading of "weirdness".

Different GMs use different threads for different purposes. There is, obviously, no right and no wrong way. The only thing I consider somewhat wasteful is creating IC threads in advance that no-one uses.

My own policy is to create a single main IC thread where everyone starts, unless people are specifically starting in different locations. Then as peoplke move to different locations, or go on "missions", I will create threads for them. If a couple request a private thread, I will create that too, but I may well have a single thread for all smut scenes - it's up to the players to know who is with whom, and anyway that's what post tagging is for.
Yes, that's why I ask about "weirdness level". When I forget to explain, sometimes people on Internet misunderstand. My groups tend to know what I mean from experience, of course!
As an example of the weirdness level cranked up to eleven, today's one-shot began with the sentence "a dragon, a were-dragon, and a half-fire elemental enter a planar striptease bar" :P. And that was where the weird began... ;D
But then, our current campaign is pointing in the other direction on the weirdness scale. My preferences are wide-ranging in this regard.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #858 on: January 12, 2014, 01:45:18 PM »
a dragon, a were-dragon, and a half-fire elemental enter a planar striptease bar

The dragon looks at the menu and says "I'll have a rare steak"

The were-dragon says, "I'll have a medium steak".

The fire elemental looks at the were dragon and says "Seriously, mate, you need to stop eating those mediums, try a clarevoiyant steak instead..."

*rimshot*

Sorry, that was the best i could come up with on the spur of the moment, but seriously that was so the first line of a joke...!

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #859 on: January 12, 2014, 03:00:20 PM »
Yes, it is meant to sound like the first line of a joke, but that was indeed the intro for the game.
If you're wondering, the stripteasers were elven, human, a dancing skeleton which dresses instead of the other way around, an iron golem, a couple of tieflings, and a speaking mare. One could conclude from its presence that centaurs were respected patrons!

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #860 on: January 12, 2014, 03:14:19 PM »
weirdness level overload! *chuckles*

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #861 on: January 13, 2014, 09:37:23 AM »
weirdness level overload! *chuckles*
Nah, that was nothing. When they went to Carcosa, on the other hand... >:)
Anyway, Unlike PMs, here isn't the place for me to tell you about my games ;D!

Offline alxnjshTopic starter

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #862 on: January 13, 2014, 07:23:50 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!

Congrats!

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

I also used this definition. I locked any threads no longer in use and marked them as ARCHIVE.

Offline LunarSage

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #863 on: January 13, 2014, 08:39:39 PM »
On August 28th of this year, Classic X-Men will be 3!!!  ;D

We're still trucking along pretty strong, too.  Aiden and Kendra likely agree with me on this... making a group game last as long as CXM and HaF have takes a lot of effort on the GMs' part as well as loyal players'.  If a GM is tired of running a group game, most of the time the players will sense this and you'll have multiple people drop from what they may perceive is a "sinking ship".  My advice to GMs is to always seem enthusiastic about your group game if you want it to last.  Players can only do so much for the game as a whole... it's the GMs' job to make it a lasting enjoyable experience.  You've got to stay on top of things and not allow things to stagnate... at least in my experience.

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #864 on: January 13, 2014, 09:00:42 PM »
Superheroes vs. Villains will celebrate its 4th anniversary this coming March. :D

Been a bit of a bumpy ride along the way - lots of player turnover with peaks and valleys of interest/activity, as expected for a game going this long, and a number of GM turnovers as well, but we're lucky that the original structure of the game was set up in such a way for it to both allow PC cycling in and out and minimize the amount of direct GM oversight. There's been an arching metaplot and occasional PC vs. Plot activity, but the vast majority of activity has been OOC-arranged PC vs. PC activity, with the character creation process itself streamlined to where successive GMs can 'take the reigns' fairly smoothly.

Online Chrystal

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #865 on: January 14, 2014, 06:04:23 AM »
On August 28th of this year, Classic X-Men will be 3!!!  ;D

Congratulations....

Superheroes vs. Villains will celebrate its 4th anniversary this coming March. :D

And more congratulations!

If a GM is tired of running a group game, most of the time the players will sense this and you'll have multiple people drop from what they may perceive is a "sinking ship".  My advice to GMs is to always seem enthusiastic about your group game if you want it to last.  Players can only do so much for the game as a whole... it's the GMs' job to make it a lasting enjoyable experience.  You've got to stay on top of things and not allow things to stagnate... at least in my experience.

It's almost a chicken & egg situation.... or possibly a Catch 22 one...

For the GM to remain enthusiastic, the the players need to be posting. For the players to be posting, the GM needs to be enthusiastic.

I have found this to be true, that it is possible to create a game, get a dozen or so players who think they are interested and have only half of them ever actually post in the IC thread. I've got used to it, now. The big problem, I've found, comes when someone everyone is waiting on decides they are no-longer interested, and doesn't tell anyone! Or they just vanish.

The posting deadline goes by, everyone is waiting, the GM is busy and doesn't notice (Yep, that's me... guilty as charged....!) and two months later someone posts to the OOC thread "Is this game still going or what?"

I have to say that my yardstick for how well a group game will do is how much chatter there is in the OOC thread... If that conversation dies out, people are loosing interest, even if there is still posting going on in the IC thread(s). If everyone is waiting on someone, and there is OOC chatter, someone will, at some point, ask "Who are we all waiting for", and then it is down to the GM to try and contact the person/people and either find out why they haven't posted and help if possible, or NPC their character(s) out of the game.

Offline Sahariel

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #866 on: January 17, 2014, 12:51:45 PM »
Hello "write[rs] of ripping yarns!"

I am working on an episodic plot outline for a game centered around two mafia families but I haven't decided upon a system. I am considering GURPS or the Old World of Darkness rule set for mortals. Are there any other systems out there?

To clarify: are there any systems better suited for a mafia game than GURPS or OWoD? 
« Last Edit: January 17, 2014, 12:52:59 PM by Sahariel »

Offline Thufir Hawat

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #867 on: January 17, 2014, 05:06:14 PM »
Hello "write[rs] of ripping yarns!"

I am working on an episodic plot outline for a game centered around two mafia families but I haven't decided upon a system. I am considering GURPS or the Old World of Darkness rule set for mortals. Are there any other systems out there?

To clarify: are there any systems better suited for a mafia game than GURPS or OWoD?
Yes, including free, dedicated ones. I recommend Mobsters by Burger Games, which uses the Scorpio game system.
Google just found it for you, I leave it to you to adapt it slightly if you want to run something set in another age :P.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2014, 05:37:00 PM by Thufir Hawat »

Offline TheGlyphstone

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #868 on: January 17, 2014, 05:24:10 PM »
Anything is better than the rulebook for OWoD Mortals, because it doesn't exist. :D

Offline LunarSage

Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #869 on: January 17, 2014, 07:57:01 PM »
Anything is better than the rulebook for OWoD Mortals, because it doesn't exist. :D

Human: the Boring

>.>

Offline greenknight

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #870 on: January 17, 2014, 08:02:22 PM »
Heh....

<cough>Hunter and Kindred</cough>

Offline Josietta

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #871 on: January 17, 2014, 08:09:38 PM »
I think there is also a supplement for Kinfolk. >.>   Unsung Heroes or some such, yes?

Offline greenknight

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #872 on: January 17, 2014, 08:11:18 PM »
I think there is also a supplement for Kinfolk. >.>   Unsung Heroes or some such, yes?
Kinfolk, that was it :-[

Offline Josietta

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #873 on: January 17, 2014, 08:13:31 PM »
Kinfolk, that was it :-[

*pats and whispers* I thought you meant Ghouls when you said Kindred ;)  Its okay.

Offline greenknight

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Re: GM Lounge - Bartenders Answer All Your Questions
« Reply #874 on: January 17, 2014, 08:19:05 PM »
No, I feel really stupid. I know it's been almost 20 years since I last played Dick Blinkin, but I should have remembered that kindred are leeches.