D&D General I have been asked for help and I am looking for input

I would take some time to decide how powerful a ghost dragon must be and then give the players a chance to research it.

I haven't thought hard about it, but given the combo of ghost and dragon powers it's likely a relatively high CR thing, which the pc's would be able to figure out if they researched it a little.

I know there's a dming style point here, but I would also be more than willing to just tell players "A ghost dragon is at least CR 15. If you go now you will die quickly."
 

log in or register to remove this ad


the issue. in a session he had a player ask about an area of the world that he had not preped yet. (he has a hand drawn map that includes city names and ruin names) and he off the top of his head made up a (IMO) cool story about the place being haunted by a ghost dragon. (no he had no stats in mind, no real seed just answering a question) however this has turned the entire session into an argument... 4 players want to investigate this (1 of the 4 wants to actually drop what they are doing right now but other 3 just want that next) BUT 2 of them not only don't want to do it but are refusing to go near a 'ghost dragon' at level 4. Now this wasn't just a pause, but they are mid adventure and a 3ish hour session was derailed by this.
Do you know if the question was asked by the PC ingame to a NPC that might know or was this the player asking the DM just out of curiosity? As DM, sometimes I'll answer a player question but then clarify "but your character wouldn't know that" if it helps the player understand the world they're in better. I don't always like saying "your character isn't sure" when someone asks me a question about the game world because I think more often that comes across as "I haven't decided that yet".

With the group I play with currently, we try to steer the game more in the direction of players making decisions off of what their PCs actually know. Sometimes that involves the DM filling in some blanks where the PC would clearly know something the player controlling them doesn't and sometimes we have to remind each other "hey, that's metagaming" when a player wants to have their character do something there isn't a reasonable explanation for them knowing. Reasonable is obviously key and will vary person to person, but it's generally worked for us.

During a session, our PCs learned about Arkahn the Cruel and heard a rumor he possessed the hand of Vecna. One player decided fighting him would be fun and wanted to drop what we were doing to investigate. The rest of us had to remind him we had a more urgent task that was time sensitive to accomplish and there wasn't yet a compelling reason given our character's motivation for being in Avernus to begin with to seek out Arkahn. We ended up sticking with the current task and a few sessions later we found ourselves meeting Arkahn because we needed something from him.
 

delericho

Legend
the issue. in a session he had a player ask about an area of the world that he had not preped yet. (he has a hand drawn map that includes city names and ruin names) and he off the top of his head made up a (IMO) cool story about the place being haunted by a ghost dragon. (no he had no stats in mind, no real seed just answering a question) however this has turned the entire session into an argument... 4 players want to investigate this (1 of the 4 wants to actually drop what they are doing right now but other 3 just want that next) BUT 2 of them not only don't want to do it but are refusing to go near a 'ghost dragon' at level 4. Now this wasn't just a pause, but they are mid adventure and a 3ish hour session was derailed by this.

his quastion is what to do when some players WANT to do something and some DON'T, how does he as the DM adjudicate this?
By and large, you don't - the players get to decide what their characters do, and a split in opinion amongst the characters is something they should thrash out among themselves.

However, that's no an absolute rule, because these things can spill over into real-world fights, and can certainly derail the game to the detriment of everyone.

So, I'd recommend speaking to the players between sessions and so if there's a compromise that can be worked out. If not then in extremis I'd recommend pushing for a vote: majority wins. That's not an ideal way forward, but provided everyone can agree to live with it then you're okay-ish.
 

Do you know if the question was asked by the PC ingame to a NPC that might know or was this the player asking the DM just out of curiosity? As DM, sometimes I'll answer a player question but then clarify "but your character wouldn't know that" if it helps the player understand the world they're in better. I don't always like saying "your character isn't sure" when someone asks me a question about the game world because I think more often that comes across as "I haven't decided that yet".
I have most of the story and it was more of looking at the map in and out of game, talking about how to continue what they were doing and 1 player asked something akin to 'hey what's this anything we know about this' and the DM dropped some basic lore ideas (ghost dragon was not only thing just the thing they attached to)
With the group I play with currently, we try to steer the game more in the direction of players making decisions off of what their PCs actually know. Sometimes that involves the DM filling in some blanks where the PC would clearly know something the player controlling them doesn't and sometimes we have to remind each other "hey, that's metagaming" when a player wants to have their character do something there isn't a reasonable explanation for them knowing. Reasonable is obviously key and will vary person to person, but it's generally worked for us.
I am pretty big on the whole "what your character knows" idea myself so I agree... but these guys are all new players in a new world with a new DM so I am not 100% sure how they come down on it.
During a session, our PCs learned about Arkahn the Cruel and heard a rumor he possessed the hand of Vecna. One player decided fighting him would be fun and wanted to drop what we were doing to investigate. The rest of us had to remind him we had a more urgent task that was time sensitive to accomplish and there wasn't yet a compelling reason given our character's motivation for being in Avernus to begin with to seek out Arkahn. We ended up sticking with the current task and a few sessions later we found ourselves meeting Arkahn because we needed something from him.
I think your spoiler is what the DM had in mind... the idea that the whole game would grind to a halt didn't occur to him
 

I have most of the story and it was more of looking at the map in and out of game, talking about how to continue what they were doing and 1 player asked something akin to 'hey what's this anything we know about this' and the DM dropped some basic lore ideas (ghost dragon was not only thing just the thing they attached to)

I am pretty big on the whole "what your character knows" idea myself so I agree... but these guys are all new players in a new world with a new DM so I am not 100% sure how they come down on it.

I think your spoiler is what the DM had in mind... the idea that the whole game would grind to a halt didn't occur to him
Ok, that all makes sense. I'd say the players need to sort it out and come to some kind of agreement. A little bit of disagreement can be good for roleplaying, but it sounds like that managed to grind a session to a halt so we're past that point. Personally, I like to keep a couple "random" encounters in my back pocket that I can use if need be to get the party back on track if it seems like they've somehow not grabbed on to any of the plot hooks they've encountered. I try to craft them to provide additional hints that reference a previous hook and hopefully make it sound a little more compelling, which if I'm being honest usually ends up being needed if as DM I've done a bad job explaining what the group's options are and they're confused.
 

UngainlyTitan

Legend
Supporter
With out reading all the answers, I agree that the players need to resolve this among themselves but it they take too long, and another full session is too long I would take a page from (I believe Dashiel Hammett) and have assassins or some such attack the party sent by the current antagonists. This should not be a hard encounter but a signal that the world does not abide on the player timetable.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
And, if that doesn't resolve the conflict, here's a case where pulling back the curtain on their particular style might help. Either saying "Hey, I run a world where you'll die if you seek out creatures you shouldn't." (but running away might be an option) or "If that's the story you want to follow, I'll make sure it's one that's not impossible for you." (but reckless behavior might have consequences)
Personally, I’d go straight for this. Honestly, I think this is something that should be clear from session 0. Additionally, if it is the kind of campaign where you can end up facing enemies that are too strong for you to defeat, just decide if a ghost dragon is such a challenge for a 4th level party or not, and tell that to the players as well.
 

I'm on the side of not getting involved, but I also think the 4 players are crazy. Assuming they got the information from an NPC, I'd also give them a tale about a powerful knight/mage/whatever that when to challenge it, only to have his soul consumed instead (with only his faithful squire/apprentice/whatever escaping to tell the tale). This give the players time to level up before they feel comfortable facing such a threat, and also gives the DM time to fully flesh out the idea, possibly making it the epic conclusion of the campaign.
 

aco175

Legend
If the arguing is PC vs PC then let it happen. After some time you can insert some out of game answers that are neutral. Something like, if you split the party we will finish one of the adventures before taking the other PCs to the other adventure. Still letting the players decide, but giving some rules on how things would proceed. If this splits the group let the others make new PCs to go on the other mission or let other players join the table and now have two groups. Maybe find a way to bring them back if you enjoy playing with all of them.
 

pukunui

Legend
Haven't really got any advice. Just wanted to point out that Candlekeep Mysteries has stats for a CR 22 ghost dragon (Miirym) in case it's of any use to your friend.
 

An Advertisement

Advertisement4

Top