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D&D General "It's not fun when..."

Vaalingrade

Legend
I mean, I'm not sure how the souls games could be less fun (mostly because I hate rhythm games and dreary sadmore settings), but I get the concept. I don't agree with it, but I get it.
 

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I think I read about that incident in BDKR1: The Unofficial Living Greyhawk Bandit Kingdoms Summary. That's such a yikes, made all the worse by it being in sanction, official play.

I was playing in a Living Greyhawk region County of Urnst when a high level monster cast Blasphemy. The creature was high enough level that because of the level cap it automatically paralyzed, weakened and dazed every good aligned PC in the party. For 1d10 minutes.

This was also the region that had a super powerful dragon that also kidnapped and impregnated female PCs without the permission of the player or a chance to avoid it other than to hope it never found you. We had to do a quick stone shape spell to hide in the side of a cliff when it flew overhead so that my wife's PC wouldn't just be automatically taken.

So taking PCs out of play (our PCs would have died except the other PCs burned special favors to save us) when they have no chance at all? No fun. Doing things to players that cross the line into abusive? Even worse in my book.

I was told later that no one in the region played a PC with a good alignment and even the women rarely played female characters because of things like this.

The last time I did that, everyone decided that they wanted to just play their backup characters instead!

I'm very happy with my games at the moment, but I am curious to run one where people come in with explicit backup characters already built and see what changes that would engender.
 

MGibster

Legend
The PCs visit a town and just everyone there is nasty to them. Or like everyone in the entire world is. I cannot believe how many DMs I've seen try to operate like this. It's a huge mistake and very damaging to fun levels unless the PCs are total murderhobos and the DM is 100% okay with that.

In Call of Cthulhu 7th edition (I think), the Keeper's book mentions that regular people should be helpful to the investigators once in a while. Maybe the local sheriff or the state police actually helps the investigators with something instead of just trying to arrest them or throw them in the looney bin. The basic message I got from this was that you should give the PCs a reason they want to help the world.

Related to this, is that it's no fun when the PCs consistently treat NPCs like garbage for no real reason. It's okay to have a character who treats some NPCs like garbage for no reason, but when it's consistent it becomes a problem. I'll let the PC get away wtih that kind of behavior if they're paying the NPCs, are in positions of authority, or otherwise have most of the power in that particular situation, but when things are more equal, I give the PCs a hard time. It makes sense in the narrative, but it's not a lot of fun to play out.

Me: Sorry, Tony. I know you rolled well, but you just made fun of this guy's dead sister. He doesn't want a %#$ing thing from you.
 

MGibster

Legend
For a D&D example, look at something like, I don’t know, critical hits. It’s not fun to get crit, but the game is more fun with a crit mechanic in it.
Some of my best D&D memories involve critical hits against my characters and having them die. In Rise of the Runelords, my rogue got a hook to the face from a hillbilly ogre and died in the first round. It's been about 15 years since that happened and my group still gets a good laugh out of it.
 


Celebrim

Legend
But, the play loop on videogames is a different beast. The point is to work that one encounter over and over until you figure it out or your button mashing skills improve until you succeed. Those repeated losses are eventually rewarded with success, and you get to see the direct connection between the prior effort and the success. The repeated loss loop is clearly and directly connected with the eventual success. And, with typical respawning, the only thing the player has lost is time.

The failure mode in a videogame is not typically loss at an encounter - it is the ragequit.

But you don't typically get a bazillion tries at an encounter in D&D. You get one shot. The efforts and frustrations of losses are not directly tied to an eventual success, in an emotional sense.

Yes, but also not really relevant. There is a vast difference between, "My attack whiffed" and "86% of combats end in a TPK".
 

Alzrius

The EN World kitten
I think I read about that incident in BDKR1: The Unofficial Living Greyhawk Bandit Kingdoms Summary. That's such a yikes, made all the worse by it being in sanction, official play.
I've read that book, and I'm pretty sure it wasn't sanctioned in official play. There was a single scenario where Morginstaler (the red dragon in question) would basically take a female PC out on a date, and there was an idea tossed around where, if the PC's player consented to it, they could be presented with a cert saying they were pregnant with a red half-dragon character, and could play such a character later in the campaign (though based on how each year of time was measured in the campaign, that was rather pie-in-the-sky).

The thing is, none of that ever came to pass. The "pregnant with a half-dragon" thing was never greenlit, specifically because there was a concern about it trending too close to the idea that the dragon raped the PC, and the scenario was altered. At least according to the book.

EDIT: For that matter, it wasn't even in the same region as described above. The County of Urnst was set to Colorado, Montana, Wyoming, and New Mexico. The Bandit Kingdoms (described in BDKR1) were for Oklahoma and Texas. Even the meta-regions for the two were different, so there was very likely little crossover between the two.
 
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Related to this, is that it's no fun when the PCs consistently treat NPCs like garbage for no real reason.
Yeah and players who do that are usually bad in other ways. Some are doing it unconsciously and once it's pointed out, they shape up, but the ones who do it constantly, I don't even really want to play with people who play like that. That said virtually every player/PC takes a totally random dislike to some NPC or another sooner or later lol. It's only those who are consistently jerks who are an issue.
 

no Ive seen DMs get frustrated because they dont know the spell list, or just hate the magic system, take down mage at beginning of every combat, or just throw magic proof monsters at them.

Or only throw monsters that cant be critted at your crit fisher. it can be done to any character.
We're talking about bad luck, not terrible DMing. That's an entirely separate issue.
 

Oofta

Legend
I've read that book, and I'm pretty sure it wasn't sanctioned in official play. There was a single scenario where Morginstaler (the red dragon in question) would basically take a female PC out on a date, and there was an idea tossed around where, if the PC's player consented to it, they could be presented with a cert saying they were pregnant with a red half-dragon character, and could play such a character later in the campaign (though based on how each year of time was measured in the campaign, that was rather pie-in-the-sky).

The thing is, none of that ever came to pass. The "pregnant with a half-dragon" thing was never greenlit, specifically because there was a concern about it trending too close to the idea that the dragon raped the PC, and the scenario was altered. At least according to the book.
I'm just relaying what I was told by people at the convention. The dragon flew overhead, we had to hide because the dragon was known to abduct female PCs. It had apparently happened to players the other players knew, the DM did not contradict what they said.

I wouldn't be surprised if it was modified for publication, we were pretty amazed, and not in a good way, by the whole thing ourselves.
 

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