D&D 5E Do you want your DM to fudge?

As a player, do you want your DM to fudge? (with the same answer choices as that other poll).

  • Yes

    Votes: 47 23.7%
  • Almost never

    Votes: 77 38.9%
  • No, never

    Votes: 74 37.4%

Noctem

Explorer
I don't want DM's to do it and I never do it myself when I DM. I roll in the open, not behind a screen, so everyone can see the result. I determine modifiers before rolling and voice them out loud so that the group knows what's going on. Imo, it's the best way to play.
 
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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Max, no.

Fudging is not inherently for the shared fun of the group - it can be used for other purposes, I've seen it done (more often than not, actually, since I have never once seen a DM fudge something and it enhance anyone's fun but the DM's)

So what. The DM can also throw an ancient dragon against 1st level PCs. That a tool can be used incorrectly does not mean that the tool when used correctly is bad. Fudging is a tool that when used correctly is for the shared fun of the group.

A DM does not, despite however confident they are that they do, have the ability to guarantee their deception is never caught - and caught deception causes doubt, which makes trust harder and risks causing damage to the enjoyment of the game. Since getting caught lying is possible, but lying isn't necessary in the first place, choosing to lie is choosing to endanger the shared fun of the group, not bolstering it.

There's no way you will ever be able to tell what I rolled when I announce a hit, miss, crit or fumble. You'd have to be able to see the die roll for that.

A DM also does not, despite however confident they are that they do, have the ability to guarantee that what they think the group will find most enjoyable is actually what the group will find most enjoyable - which exaggerates the risk that should you get caught lying to your players that it has a significant negative effect on their enjoyment.

Yep. Sometimes the DM uses the wrong tool. Sometimes I give an orc encounter when the group might enjoy a goblin better. They still have fun.

While I can't guarantee that it will be more fun, the tool is there so that they do have more fun and I can observe the increase in enjoyment. Namely, I see them get dejected when they have extreme bad luck and are getting their arses kicked, despite doing everything right. When thing even up a bit more due to fudging, their fun skyrockets. So far I've never been wrong, but I suppose I might be one day. I'll take the risk and continue to use the fudging tool for its purpose.............to increase enjoyment in the group.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
As far as I'm concerned, fudging is just a polite way of saying cheating. If the players can't cheat, why should the DM be able to? You want to steal my agency? Go play a video game.

First, the DM literally can't cheat. It's not possible to cheat when you have the ability to alter, add and subtract rules from the game. That's also a major difference between the players and the DM and the "answer" to your second question.

Second, no agency has been stolen. I'm not fudging your rolls and preventing you from doing as you will.

If you want to play with a robot in control of the game, go play a video game.
 

Nagol

Unimportant
First, the DM literally can't cheat. It's not possible to cheat when you have the ability to alter, add and subtract rules from the game. That's also a major difference between the players and the DM and the "answer" to your second question.

A DM's abilities are entirely constrained by the social contract at the table. If the table says eating Cheetos is cheating then if the DM eats Cheetos, he is cheating.
Tables I run and tables I sit at generally have the understood condition "no one changes die results" so DM fudging is in effect cheating.

Second, no agency has been stolen. I'm not fudging your rolls and preventing you from doing as you will.

If you want to play with a robot in control of the game, go play a video game.

Fudging destroys agency by preventing appropriate consequence and/or having the DM covertly insert a preferred outcome over the player-accepted risk and group-accepted method of determination.

Who wants a robot? I want a thinking DM who lets the chips fall where they may once the dice hit the mat. Heck, maybe as a player I want to fail and explore the outcome and consequences of that failure.
 

S

Sunseeker

Guest
False. Deception is also an issue because players need to be able to trust that their DM has the shared fun of the group as their prime priority, and it is more difficult to trust someone that you know to be intentionally deceptive.

False dichotomy. The "shared fun of the group" is not antithetical to fudging. It may be to YOU, but you're not the group and the DM, as with anyone in life, can't make everyone happy all of the time.
 

Nagol

Unimportant
False dichotomy. The "shared fun of the group" is not antithetical to fudging. It may be to YOU, but you're not the group and the DM, as with anyone in life, can't make everyone happy all of the time.

Which is what makes "Do you fudge?" just a great table sorting question to help maximise shared fun.

If the answer is yes then I help that group out by not sitting with them and I expect the same courtesy when I tell people I don't fudge. If they think it's necessary, they shouldn't sit down.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
A DM's abilities are entirely constrained by the social contract at the table. If the table says eating Cheetos is cheating then if the DM eats Cheetos, he is cheating.
That's moving the goal posts. We aren't discussing the social contract here and haven't been the entire time. Nobody has put forth any kind of scenario where the group decided on no fudging before the campaign started.

Tables I run and tables I sit at generally have the understood condition "no one changes die results" so DM fudging is in effect cheating.

True, but again, it has nothing to do with the discussion up to this point and the statement I put forth.

Fudging destroys agency by preventing appropriate consequence and/or having the DM covertly insert a preferred outcome over the player-accepted risk and group-accepted method of determination.

First, there is no "appropriate" consequence here. The game is fluid and open with its consequences. They can go in any direction. Second, the DM is not inserting a preferred outcome. Fudging is just a nudge in a direction, usually to correct when a game breaks or to add to player enjoyment without changing the outcome.
 

Nagol

Unimportant
That's moving the goal posts. We aren't discussing the social contract here and haven't been the entire time. Nobody has put forth any kind of scenario where the group decided on no fudging before the campaign started.

<snip>

Nowhere was it discussed if it were discussed by the group at all. The question is whether or not you want the DM to fudge.

I posit those that do not want the DM to fudge at any time are displaying a pretty strong particular preference. If you have a particular preference for anything, you should open your mouth and express it to the group. I always discuss with prospective new players that they will survive or fail by their choices and the dice. I won't interfere. I always ask if the DM fudges. His answer, should I sit at the table, is part of the social contract.

It is also best if the group has a quick discussion so it is understood how typical campaign gotchas are being handled -- fudging, TPK, PVP combat, PVP actions/rivalries, secrets/cliques, splitting up, etc. so the misunderstandings get stemmed early.
 

Nagol

Unimportant
First, there is no "appropriate" consequence here. The game is fluid and open with its consequences. They can go in any direction. Second, the DM is not inserting a preferred outcome. Fudging is just a nudge in a direction, usually to correct when a game breaks or to add to player enjoyment without changing the outcome.

Sorry to split your post, I had a hardware failure in the interface between screen and keyboard.

It can't go in all expected directions: that what a fudge does. There is this one niggling direction that the DM simply refuses to allow. That is inserting a preferred outcome. This is acceptable;that is not. The dice indicate that so I will announce this without allowing the group to know that is prohibited.
 

S

Sunseeker

Guest
Which is what makes "Do you fudge?" just a great table sorting question to help maximise shared fun.

If the answer is yes then I help that group out by not sitting with them and I expect the same courtesy when I tell people I don't fudge. If they think it's necessary, they shouldn't sit down.

Bah, what arrogance. You "help that group out" by not sitting with them. This is the exact problem I have with anti-fudgers in this thread. Your posts don't read like you're interested in a good game, having a good time, or making new friends. Your posts all read like the only person who matters at the table is you and if you're not happy, the DM is an evil Machiavellian jerk whose only intent is to ruin your fun.

Whatever. I don't want to be part of this discussion anymore, too much negativity.
 

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