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Gaming catchphrases, expressions, and idioms--what are yours?


Reading this thread I thought of a lot of quotes, so I'll try to be brief.

Johnny Cash
I played a fire elementalist who regularly used circular Walls of Fire on his opponents. For example: "I pull a Johnny Cash on that orc."

Tender, tasty, and pink in the center
Used to describe any mundane item that the PCs inspect. Stolen from the description of the roast beef in the old Castle Amber module. For example: "This chair is not magical, but it is tender, tasty, and pink in the center."

Gobble Gobble
Every word in the goblin language sounds like "gobble". Similarly, every word in the ogre language is "ogre". So when youlisten at the door and hear "gobble gobble" or "ogre ogre ogre" you know what's in there.

Evil is left handed
Whenever presenter with a branching corridor, we always go left because "evil is left handed".

Wandering Woodsman
This guy shows up whenever the DM accidentally kills the entire party. Only used by kind-hearted DMs.

Why are you drawing the room?
Originally referring to an airport in a Vampire game. If the DM starts drawing the layout of the room on the grid, clearly there's going to be combat. The original usage was followed by the following exchange:

PC 1: I don't think we're all going to fit in one Hummer.
PC 2: It doesn't matter, it's about to get blown up anyway.
GM: <glares at PC 2>

Are all the street signs in German?
Originally used in the same Vampire game, while time traveling in London. Used when a PC figures out the DM's neat plot twist too quickly.

What kind of armor are they wearing?
It wasn't until after we sprung our ambush on the band of slavers that we were informed that they were all mounted and wearing full plate. This question gets asked a lot now.

Do they have dogs?
The two thieves in my game decided they wanted to do a little larceny after one of the other players went home. I was making the manor house they were breaking into up on the fly, and one of the other players asked if the guards had dogs. Since the PCs hadn't actually seen what was on the other side of the wall yet, I didn't feel bad about adding some dogs. This phrase is now used to represent giving the DM evil ideas.

Used to indicate the elven archer botching another attack roll. Usually preceded by a heavy sigh.

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"I see you have defeated my cow."

A reference from the amazingly stupid, yet still entertaining, movie Kung Pow. Now used by players occasionally after defeating any creature that was a decent challenge. Especially funny when used by the DM for the first time. Less so at this point. ;)


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More Phrases

*ss Berries

"I'm stepping back five feet and eating an *ss-berry of Cure Serious!"

When the druid began making Infusions, we got into a conversation about what they were made out of. According to all the films and literature, things made by druids from 'natural' ingredients were always disgusting ("What's in this stuff?" "Don't ask.")
Our druid swore he made the stuff out of strawberries. So we said he had to do something to make them taste horrible, otherwise, like all medicines, it wouldn't work. So thus the phrase "*ss-Berry" was born. We could only *assume* what he did to the berries to 'empower' them to work normally. Blech.

Who's On Countdown?

"Richard, you're on countdown. Anyone above 25?"

When doing combat, I hate tracking Initiative, so I assign it to players to count it down on the battle mat. It's called the Countdown.

Wake Up Call

"I give the signal to Grond and we make our wake-up calls."

Sneak attack. It always kinda struck me as funny, giving a wake-up call to a creature by killing them, but whatever.


"I ping the guy to give Rothgar a +2 AC."

Hitting foes with damage reduction for no damage, or using the Harry combat option to do no damage. "Pinging" off their armor.

Light 'Em Up

"I'll light 'em up."

This is translated as "toss the continual light torch (or regular torch, light object, whatever) nearest to the combat sounds, targeting the square closest to the sound I hear.

Buck Futter!

"Buck Futter!"
"I don't have evasion, I'm getting out of the way!"

That was a signal contrived by the players in my game to warn each other of incoming area effect spells. By giving a one-count warning, I awarded them a +1 Insight Bonus to the Reflex Save (only because they knew it was coming).
It was also a warning that all characters without evasion were to leave the area as quickly as possible. Evasion people, take your chances.
Buck Futter, of course, came from one of the old Jeopardy! parodies on SNL. "Sean Connery" yelling at "Alex Trebek", "Buck Futter!"

Bad Touch

"She Bad Touches you for 18 damage, Will Save for half."

Cause Wounds or any other damaging touch spell (but typically the Cause Wounds spells).

Quarter and Bless by Two's

"I take three clerics and we quarter and bless by two's."

This was a classic. Our resident militant decided to play a tragic cleric in a game (and not a cleric of war, either, mind you). We set up an avalanche and destroy an entire army. Note that in this world, the dead rise after three days unless you bless the ground on which they died.
So without a step, Marcus steps up and issues his famous command. Since then, it has come to mean any systematic clerical cleansing of a location.


"Yes, the soldier is sufficiently terylized."

Teryl, the fighter in the above mentioned campaign, could go into a situation and begin issuing orders with absolutely no idea what was going on. Ignorance will not stop military decisiveness in the pitch of battle. (Official Quote)
Teryl would begin issuing orders, denigrating and generally brow-beating until men followed his instructions. Most of the obedience, however, was fear, so the condition came be known as Terylizing. Men who refused to move when ordered to stand to, by the way, were suffering from 'Teralysis".

Thwack, Thunk, Shunk, and Vorp

In order of more damaging sound effects:

Thwack - Blunt damage of over 10 points.
Thunk - Piercing damage of over 15 points.
Shunk - Slashing damage of over 20 points.
Vorp - Energy or magic damage of over 30 points.
Also interchangable with "Woosh"


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I still call players "twinks" and "choads" from my mudding days.

And I like to, jokingly, encourage the players to pk each other.



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More Phrases

"Celestial Badger, I Choose You!"

When summon first appeared in 3E, we said it sounded too much like Pokemon. Since then, we ask what's loaded in a caster's Pokeball (What can he cast based on the spell and alignment).
We all swear the material components should be a Pokeball.


Bards have become known as Cheerleaders. They have Charisma, they sing and dance, and they cheer the party on when the real adventurers are fighting. They also know nothing useful but they do recall random bits of information they overheard someplace. And they talk people into telling them things or doing things for them.
I believe Bards should wear short skirts and sweaters and get the whole charade into the open.

"I Strike With Impunity"

Firing a bow or attacking with reach, knowing you are out of the reach of the powerful answering attacks unless they move. BTW, you cannot strike with impunity unless there's a fighter around to cover you.

"The Dwarf-Stroke"

Failing a swimming check is called "Doing the Dwarf-Stroke". It's a special form of swimming and only dwarves do well. But others may emulate if their die rolls suck bad enough.

"Go Over the Room With a Fine-Toothed Halfling"

Standard, send the halfling to take 20 on the room with Search rolls.


First Post
A few years ago we had a bard who was quite the racist. He would call elves "points, because of their ears." Dwarves and gnomes "diggers - well, they're always digging something up that probably should be left buried!" Halflings "flingers - aww, look at 'em, flinging those widdle bitty pebbles!" And orcs "piggly-wigglies - what a dirty and disgusting race; they should all be slaughtered like the pigs that they are."

The funny thing, he was a half-elf!


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"Cowboy Rage!"

From a Deadlands game in which I play a gunslinger. Another player entered the game, also playing a gunslinger, and our characters hit it off immediately since we shared the same Enemy. Whenever the two of us get the opportunity to sling some serious lead, we shout "Cowboy Rage!" and mime firing our guns into the air. Taken from the movie "Chasing Amy", the "Black rage!" scene.

"I've got etiquette."

From a D&D 2E game I ran. One player, a paladin, was surrounded by enemies and hopelessly outmatched. He was asked if he had anything which would help him in this situation. He glanced at his character sheet and sheepishly said, "I've got etiquette." Afterwards, whenever someone was at a loss for ideas, they'd say it.

"Hitch # [X]"

From another D&D 2E game I ran. The players would come up with these ridiculously detailed plans to deal with situations, fully aware they were overplanning but determined to make them work. As problems arose (which they inevitably would), they'd keep track of them by chorusing "Hitch Number One!" "Hitch Number Two!" and so forth.


First Post
Whenever the group gets amazingly off-topic or lapses into marginally in-character joking around, I took to saying variations of the following:

I roll a Search check to find the plot.

The incredible thing is, the first time I made a plot Search, I rolled a natural 20. It just seemed to stick from there.

Additionally, should something good happen, a group member may invoke a celebration by saying "And there was much rejoicing!" to which everyone else must reply "Yay ..."

The key is, no one person may invoke such a celebration more than three times a night. (I was abusing it ...)
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First Post
Every single one of my attack rolls is a called shot to the face. It's kind of my slogan. "6 points of damage to the face!" "Three Lesser Acid Orbs to the face!" I had to stop because it was driving people crazy.

Dave G

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Well mine comes from my high level game. I play a mutant dwarf who uses an Orc-Double Axe, gets massive attacks per round and is kind of the front-line party battler.

A few years back when Star Wars Episode I came out there was a clip of the duel between Darth Maul and Obiwan and Qui-Gon Jinn, they had editted it to the tune of Kid Rock's Bawitaba. I was a pretty big Kid Rock fan, so after my first really great series of attacks I started chanting:


Now any time someone does a spectacular set of strikes, two or three players will start in with the bawitaba... :)

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