D&D General How do players feel about DM fudging?

How do you, as a player, feel about DM fudging?

  • Very positive. Fudging is good.

    Votes: 5 2.7%
  • Positive. Fudging is acceptable.

    Votes: 41 22.4%
  • Neutral. Fudging sure is a thing.

    Votes: 54 29.5%
  • Negative. Fudging is dubious.

    Votes: 34 18.6%
  • Very negative. Fudging is bad.

    Votes: 49 26.8%

  • Poll closed .

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Musing Mage

Pondering D&D stuff
I hate it. I will leave a game. I HAVE left games. I want a DM to adjudicate the game fairly, the fun will take care of itself.

Roll out in the open* where everyone can see, let the dice land where they will. That's the game part of it. Not completing a scenario because the dice crapped out doesn't make it less fun, but knowing the DM coddled the players by 'helping' them does. Or worse - knowing the DM cheated so they could 'win' is really, really bad.

*where possible, there are legitimately some rolls that should be done hidden away. This is not a license to fudge!
 

A few months ago, I had quite a discussion on a French forum about the same topic. One of the "pro fudge side" was whining that without fudging, his stories might end up too early to see the end and all his work would go down the drain.

To which I replied, it is not your story that the players want. It is the story that develops from play, the discovery you will make with your players will be the stuff that you will all rember. If you want to write a novel, write one. Do not force your players to play your "perfect" novel.

I was told to F word up....

But for me fudging is stealing and killing the story that might have been. And that alone, is reason enough to never fudge.
 
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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I hate it. I will leave a game. I HAVE left games. I want a DM to adjudicate the game fairly, the fun will take care of itself.

Roll out in the open* where everyone can see, let the dice land where they will. That's the game part of it. Not completing a scenario because the dice crapped out doesn't make it less fun, but knowing the DM coddled the players by 'helping' them does. Or worse - knowing the DM cheated so they could 'win' is really, really bad.

*where possible, there are legitimately some rolls that should be done hidden away. This is not a license to fudge!
First, the DM can't cheat. He can only abuse his authority. Second, fudging =/= "so they could 'win'." Several people here have mentioned many reasons to fudge that have nothing to do with the DM trying to win or gain advantage.
 


bloodtide

Legend
I'm against it as I'm against the whole idea.

The DM has a dragon attack the PCs....and a couple of rolls later, oh no, 25 damage to character Zarok will kill him. But the weak DM does not want Zarok to die as his player Bob will be sad so they fudge and say "oh just 10 damage".

I say: just let the character die. Let Bob be sad, cry in the corner, slam doors and do whatever.

If your the DM, and you did not want Bob's special snowflake character to die....then you should just alter game reality to make it so. Don't waste time EVER having Bob's character in combat, just tell Bob he "won D&D or whatever".

You accept dice rolls, or do NOT make them.
 

Musing Mage

Pondering D&D stuff
A few months ago, I had quite a discussion on a French forum about the same topic. One of the "pro fudge side" was whining that without fudging, his storiesight end up too early to see the end and all his work would go down the drain.

Funny story - my 1e game went online for a bit through January and February, so I had to input 4 dungeon levels into Roll20. The group goes in, gets trounced, retreats and heals. Goes back in, gets trounced... rinse and repeat. Until finally, they decide they can't beat this dungeon, but do find a good bit of loot to warrant their work and retreat for good... only having completed half of the first dungeon level.

Lots of work put in on my part, but I wasn't going to force it - that's not the role of the DM. As DM it's NICE when things play through, but I can't expect it always will be.

First, the DM can't cheat. He can only abuse his authority. Second, fudging =/= "so they could 'win'." Several people here have mentioned many reasons to fudge that have nothing to do with the DM trying to win or gain advantage.

It's really just semantics and the result is the same - whether you call it cheating (I do) or abusing your authority (also true), it destroys trust. I don't want to play with that DM because at the very least I know I can't trust them.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I'm against it as I'm against the whole idea.

The DM has a dragon attack the PCs....and a couple of rolls later, oh no, 25 damage to character Zarok will kill him. But the weak DM does not want Zarok to die as his player Bob will be sad so they fudge and say "oh just 10 damage".

I say: just let the character die. Let Bob be sad, cry in the corner, slam doors and do whatever.

If your the DM, and you did not want Bob's special snowflake character to die....then you should just alter game reality to make it so. Don't waste time EVER having Bob's character in combat, just tell Bob he "won D&D or whatever".

You accept dice rolls, or do NOT make them.
Have you even read most of the reasons in this thread and the other about why DMs fudge? I don't think you have, because nothing you just said touches in those reasons at all.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
It's really just semantics and the result is the same - whether you call it cheating (I do) or abusing your authority (also true), it destroys trust. I don't want to play with that DM because at the very least I know I can't trust them.
Some kinds of fudging are an abuse of authority. Others are not. I do not fudge to favor either myself or the players. In the extremely unlikely event that A) the players made no bad decisions, B) the players are having extreme(not just plain ole) bad luck, and C) I am having extreme(not play ole) good luck, I will fudge a bit to allow them a fighting chance at survival. A TPK should not happen due to extreme die luck. That's not an abuse of authority. That's just good DMing.
 

Musing Mage

Pondering D&D stuff
I do not fudge to favor either myself or the players.

Based on what I've read of your posts, I never would have assumed that you did... but...

In the extremely unlikely event that A) the players made no bad decisions, B) the players are having extreme(not just plain ole) bad luck, and C) I am having extreme(not play ole) good luck, I will fudge a bit to allow them a fighting chance at survival. A TPK should not happen due to extreme die luck. That's not an abuse of authority. That's just good DMing.

...this is where our philosophies diverge, I will let that TPK happen if that's where the players' choices and the dice have taken things. To me and my players that's simply part of the game. One of my regulars always smiles at the prospect of a new character - "I hate losing my current guy, but I love making new ones... so I'm torn!"

And the cycle continues.
 

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