How flexible are you as player and as a GM?

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
As to players, I wouldn't keep a player who ran actively evil PCs. Or a player who couldn't keep his political views to himself (unless he agreed with mine). Players must run their own gender. Players who speak with accents in-character are generally warned, then booted; players with actual accents are OK.
I'd fail on three of those four clauses (and maybe all four if we got talking about politics, dunno).

Apropos to the thread: as a player in anything more than a one-off I reserve the right to play my character in whatever manner suits it, to make whatever gender suits the ideas I have in mind, and to give it an accent if only to make it easier to tell when I'm speaking in-character as opposed to out-of-character.

As DM I'm pretty much in the camp of "here's the system, here's the setting, let's drop the puck".

As either DM or player, I'm not at all interested in learning new systems when what I already know will do the job.
 

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James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
I've on occasion run into players who will argue until they are blue in the face that their characters should be allowed to do certain things. And then note that when they take a turn in the DM chair, suddenly become ultra-strict about what they allow players to do (this happens a lot in public play, where you see several people switching from player to DM with some frequency).

Of course, they never take kindly to me when I point this out, lol.

Even though I try to give players the benefit of the doubt, I'm not immune either; I don't handle surprises well. I'd much rather a player come to me between sessions with an idea (or even consulting me at all!) than have it thrust in my face, as it were, mid-session.

Especially if it looks like it would torpedo the challenge at hand; I'm also very unsure about setting precedents. When I was a young DM, I got conned into making rulings that I quickly came to regret, and it's a hang-up that I've managed, but never cured myself of.

Perhaps it's simply a case of power corrupting; the vast influence you have over the game becomes addicting, and you act in ways you otherwise would not, to keep the game running the way you want it to?
 

As a player I am pretty flexible though there are some genres and playstyles I do not enjoy and I try to avoid the game systems built to foster and encourage them. If I know and like the people around the table I can sometimes put those preferences aside and enjoy the company in the context.

As a GM I tend to have some general preferences that tend to shine through in everything I run such as a preference for non-villanous PCs and often some ideas about this setting or that setting that are non-negotiable for a given game but other than that I'm perfectly happy to let the players and their characters be the focus of play and make most of the decisions about theme and direction. I'll generally try to use a game system as-is and run settings and situations that play to that system's strengths.
 

dragoner

KosmicRPG.com
Over the years that I've been participating in on-line discussions about TTRPGs, there have been times where the discussions hit on participants' pet peeves where people will opine on how certain styles or certain rules would ruin the game for them. Some of the big contenders are open-world vs railroad, alignment, and enforcing resource management (tracking ammunition, spell components, encumbrance). But just about anything can trigger someone's gag reflex when it comes to gaming.

What I found is that even with those posters who have bluntly stated that certain ways I've run the game are awful and that they would hate to play in my games, I feel that we would have no problems if I were a player in their games.

Putting aside the almost academic-level of analysis we get into when discussing specific rules or play styles, how flexible are you as a player and as a GM?

I find that as a PLAYER, I am very flexible, especially with one-shots and mini-campaigns. I'll play almost anything. I can have fun with nearly any theme, setting, or GM style. Crunchy or thespian, sandbox or rail-road, ... whatever. Almost. My work limits the time I have to commit to play in multiple campaigns. That means, other than the campaign I'm running as GM, I mostly join one-shots. And I tend to look for one-shots that are very different than the D&D 5e campaign I run. If I were to commit to a long-term campaign that I had to schedule into my work and family life, I would have to be exceptionally fun for me to deal with the scheduling headaches. Still, I think the "exceptionally fun" part would be determined more by the group of players than the system or setting.

As a DM, I am moderately flexible. When we are close to wrapping up a campaign, I start discussing with them what kind of game we want to run next. But it needs to be something that I'll enjoy running. Currently, the means not involving a huge amount of work to prep, not overly complicated rules, and probably swords & sorcery fantasy. DnD 5e is the easy default because I'm quite familiar with the game and have a lifetime's worth of adventures, settings, and rules options. But I'm not hung up on an specific themes, settings, or rules options. I'll generally go with what the group is interested in.

How about you? Aside from abusive personalities or anti-social behavior, are there any rules, play-styles, themes, or venues that you would never DM or play in, no matter how much you like the people at the table?
About the same, more flexible playing than running a game.
 

kenada

Legend
Supporter
What games use this and how do they work? I'm thinking of video games where the more you fight with two-handed weapons the quicker you level up your skill in two-handed weapons. Is it the same idea? What don't you like about it? Too fiddly? Too much record keeping?
The two games I’ve played with usage-based advancement were Call of Cthluhu 6e and Torchbearer 2e. Call of Cthulhu was mostly fine. You get to mark when you succeed, and later you roll to see if and how much the skill improved. I think we did every few sessions. That was okay, but I don’t think there was a way to train to gain new skills. If you didn’t bump something up at character creation, you would need to fish for a success to improve a skill past the baseline (which might be only 5% by default).

Torchbearer 2e has a chapter dedicated to advancing skills. It’s not long (four pages digest), but that feels like four pages too many for me. The basics of it is you need a number of passes equal to the skill’s rating and a number of fails equal to the rating minus one, but only certain tests counted. Ob 0 tests never count. You only get to mark one during a conflict, which is the first unless you don’t need that, so in that case you can wait to mark the one you do need. You can mark two Resources tests in town phase unless the first one resulted in an increase to your Resources rating, then you can’t mark the second. Ties also don’t count unless you do something to break them.

Now that I’ve written them out, it doesn’t seem so bad, but I’m still not a fan. I definitely wasn’t confident in what should count during the sessions when we played, so I’m pretty sure I avoided marking advancements when I should have gotten them.

Edit: Saw @niklinna’s post #8. There’s also Blades in the Dark, which has you mark XP for the attribute associated with a skill. If you make a Skirmish roll while in a desperate position, you get to mark XP in Prowess (the attribute for Skirmish). If you mark enough XP, you add a dot to any of the skills under Prowess (Finesse, Prowl, Skirmish, or Wreck). You can also spend downtime training, which adds XP to an attribute of your choice. That system is okay. What it’s really doing is rewarding you for taking risks.
 
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bloodtide

Legend
I don't get to be a player often, but there are few games I would bother to join. Compared to most people, my version of fun is extreme, on edge, and even harsh. This stops me from being a player often.

As a Forever DM, I'm not too flexible at all. I like my game play and game style exactly the way it is. If you don't like it, you don't have to play in my game.

I'm firm on such things like you will show up on time and be ready to play the game. I won't stand for players that are bullies or attack other players or worse. And I'm firm on when and how we will do the meal break.

I will never run a casual game: that is no fun for me. My game will always be fast, intense, and focused.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
I've on occasion run into players who will argue until they are blue in the face that their characters should be allowed to do certain things. And then note that when they take a turn in the DM chair, suddenly become ultra-strict about what they allow players to do (this happens a lot in public play, where you see several people switching from player to DM with some frequency).
<SNIP>
Perhaps it's simply a case of power corrupting; the vast influence you have over the game becomes addicting, and you act in ways you otherwise would not, to keep the game running the way you want it to?

Once you are in the GM chair, you realize how challenging it can be and it is common that many of your opinions on how a game should be run become more nuanced.

You'd think that would make folks more sympathetic when they are back in the player's seat. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
 

<SNIP>


Once you are in the GM chair, you realize how challenging it can be and it is common that many of your opinions on how a game should be run become more nuanced.

You'd think that would make folks more sympathetic when they are back in the player's seat. Unfortunately, that is not always the case.
In my experience there's a similar realization available to long-term GMs who get or take or make an opportunity to play. Alas many GMs don't seem to learn any more from the reversal of perspective than the players you're talking about.
 

MNblockhead

A Title Much Cooler Than Anything on the Old Site
And I'm firm on when and how we will do the meal break.
I'm sorry, but I have to ask. How must meal breaks be done?

Is it more about not eating while playing as it would detract from the energy and focus of the group (and to protect gaming materials from spills) or about not wasting time driving to pick up food somewhere?
 

billd91

Not your screen monkey (he/him) 🇺🇦🇵🇸🏳️‍⚧️
I‘m generally pretty flexible, particularly as a player. If the GM wants to curate their setting and omit options from the core game, I’m ok with it. There are, however, a few games I’m not at all interested in playing and would rather sit out than play in them - mainly Vampire and, now after trying it, Torg. I’m not at all into the Vampire subject matter and I didn’t particularly enjoy Torg’s game play.
 

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