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Why are people so uncomfortable with PvP?

Wilphe

Explorer
Spin off from the "should you get XP from fighting your party members" thread.

http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=148286&page=1&pp=40

It's not a relevent question to the point of the thread, so I'll raise it here:


Why do so many people seem to have issues with PvP to the point of outrightly forbidding it?


Is it from bad experiences?
Too much of killing other PCs in their sleep for random pocket change?
Thieves stealing from the party?

Is it from bad group dynamics and players who have trouble keeping IC and OOC seperate?


Or is it just not D&D? - "you are the heroes, now ACT like it?"
 

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Venport

First Post
I had a situation where the party monk tried to Disarm the party Fighter (it did not work due to locked gauntlets) because the monk was protecting an innocent animal. the next step was the Fighter attacking the monk, the monk repsoed with nonleathal force however the fighter killed the monk... at that point the players were to mad at each other that one stormed off... i have no idea why this happend but it messed the the party dynamics and almost broke up our gaming group.

As the Dm i desited that this did not happen.

and we stared back from before the monk tried to disarm the fighter.... Personaly i don't want to play with the person who played the fighter ever again but this is an example of how it beceomes an issue with the party... this is also why i will never allow unjustified fighting among the player in my games
 

Peter Gibbons

First Post
Wilphe said:
Why do so many people seem to have issues with PvP to the point of outrightly forbidding it?
In my experience, PvP has always ended badly. Even when players claim they can separate their IC actions from their OC feelings, it has a huge tendency to destroy campaigns and sometimes even the gaming group itself.
 

Crothian

First Post
Because nothing good ever comes of it.

But I don't forbid it, I found a better way to deal with it is play with people that just don't do it.
 

Dagger75

Epic Commoner
Would you want to hang out with a guy who turned around and beat the ever living crap outta you and take your wallat because he could?

If not there is your answer.
 

Truth Seeker

Adventurer
The original intent is for unusual folks *like characters of different classes* to band, gather, form, a cohesive group against a commom threat, enemy, goal, and the like.

The majority of the time, the threat is external, with sometimes, if the DM is crafty, a small internal trouble *a player a spy, or something*

The overall premise of role-playing, is not to waste people's time, when gathering to play this game on the tabletop, some people travel distances *like me, 16.5 miles to Manhattan to play*, you are there to have fun, learn something about yourself in the process, if that happens and enjoy the company you are with.

If you want to have such an experience of PvP, may I suggest kindly...invest in online play of a PC *which you have*, or get a console, and buy a first-person shooter game. There...you can do ALL PvP you want :) .

D&D is a social game, everything is face to face...online is not.

PvP will be a waste of time and resources, for anyone who will venture there, but then again, some will do it for kicks, but after awhile, it will get old.

Quickly.
 

ThirdWizard

First Post
Personally, I'm not against it, but I know why many people are.

For one, most people have had bad experiences with it. I'll bet many here could tell stories that would horrify you about PvP and the players behind them. I am still a firm believer that there is good PvP just like there is bad. Determining the difference is very difficult to determine beforehand, and often difficult to figure out afterward.

It involves a bit of detachment of the player to the PC. The "pawns" type player handles PvP more easily than others. And by pawns I mean they're like writers who choose PC actions in order to bring out interesting roleplay, not those that manipulate PCs toward their own end. For example, a pawn player might decide that it would be interesting for his PC to dislike a baron because of the future opportunities in roleplaying it would bring. Likewise, they might see a dischord between party members as an interesting dynamic that may eventually come to blows.

And, it takes two of these players to pull it off successfully. Only one, and things can go bad.
 

MavrickWeirdo

First Post
Wilphe said:
Spin off from the "should you get XP from fighting your party members" thread.

http://www.enworld.org/showthread.php?t=148286&page=1&pp=40

It's not a relevent question to the point of the thread, so I'll raise it here:


Why do so many people seem to have issues with PvP to the point of outrightly forbidding it?


Is it from bad experiences?
Too much of killing other PCs in their sleep for random pocket change?
Thieves stealing from the party?

Is it from bad group dynamics and players who have trouble keeping IC and OOC seperate?


Or is it just not D&D? - "you are the heroes, now ACT like it?"

It depends on the game. CoC, or Paranoia it's fine.

However it is tough to run an extended campain if players keep killing each other off.
 



HeapThaumaturgist

First Post
For me it's really a "why" factor.

I mean, if two players came to me and said they had a great roleplaying thing they wanted to do where one character would get mad at the other and they'd have a grand cinematic combat and at the end one would be struck down ... but left for dead, and would come back as a major villian ...

Something like that. Eh. Cool.

But general PvP is one of those "Fun Reducing Things" which I just see no reason to put up with. Rack it up next to Evil characters, Chaotic Neutral-Psycho/Selfish, characters with backgrounds contrary to the party, and non-Core rules I haven't playtested.

--fje
 

Shadowslayer

First Post
I found a new group once. It was an old friend of mine and a couple of his friends. With all of them being really nice and easy to be around, I figured, what the hey, lets start a D&D campaign. So everyone rolls up characters and agrees to play next week. SO I go home and design an initial dungeon and a rather unique way of starting off (unique for me anyway)

Well, after all the work I put into it and the neat story around the campaign's starting point and all that, we begin. Half an hour later someone finds a scroll. Party argues over who should get the scroll. Finally leads to a rediculous PC vs PC chase through the dungeon. This is the beginning and the personal issues going on here are becoming apparent to me.

(These are folks in their mid to late 20s by the way, and had gamed before)

To make a long story short, now people are mad at each other. We get outside to find a deserted camp with a caged Worg. Now the party argues over what to do with the worg. One player decides it by kiilling the worg outright, and the girl playing the Druid freaks. It comes to blows between PCs, and gets uglier from there.

ANd its not "ha ha, we really got ON each other didn't we?" These players were mad.

Know what the main combatants said to me? "But...I was just ROLE playing" (insert sound of fingernails scraping down a blackboard)

At that point I closed my books and basically said "look, Im not going through the hassle of designing this stuff just so you can do nothing but fight with each other. Anyone else care to DM?"

And that was it. Never played with them again.

I have NEVER been in a game where this kind of stuff ended well. Feelings get hurt. Yes you can say "well, we're mature and we can handle it", but why should you have to? It still sucks.

Campaigns that are designed in such a way that "sticking it to each other" is encouraged, accepted and expected, are another matter. They CAN be fun. But that's different.

MOST games I've played in have an unspoken social agreement that the group is going to work together. When one or 2 players bugger that up, it ceases to be fun, and the other players (and the DM. Especially the DM, in my case) resent it.

It may not be against the rules to go PvP, but it bites, and I won't waste my time.

Trev
 


Psion

Adventurer
Wilphe said:
Why do so many people seem to have issues with PvP to the point of outrightly forbidding it?

Having been on the wrong end of that philosophy, I don't think I'd be for an outright ban.

But in general, I would say it's strongly discouraged with good reason. At best it's a fun-sapping distraction and a substandard activity (there are games that can do personal scale wargaming better.) At worst it can result in hurt feelings and ruin campaigns.
 

I've seen it done once...and it worked perfectly that once, but only because the players didn't do it because they hated each other. Two characters just plain didn't like each other from the very beginning. They worked together, but mainly because they were both working to the same goal and the other two in the group wouldn't have liked the idea of them fighting at all.

Then one of the players decided to leave the game. So...we figured we'd end it how it needed to be ended for the characters. Things went very bad, chaos erupted, and the two of them went at it. Best lightsaber duel(yes, its Star Wars :)) I've ever played in. Vicious, long, and back and forth to the very end.

Of course, that's definitely an exception. I don't encourage that kind of thing, as many times it really comes up due to two people just not getting along and putting that into their characters...but if it works and is done right, it can really work.
 

Glyfair

First Post
Shadowslayer said:
Campaigns that are designed in such a way that "sticking it to each other" is encouraged, accepted and expected, are another matter. They CAN be fun. But that's different.

I think this states it well. If it's encouraged, accepted and expected, then it can turn out well. Even then, though, you'll find players who take it personally, regardless of what they claimed before.

Roleplaying encourages a certain identification with your character. Once you reach the point where you have that, it takes a very rare person to completely distance themselves from the character so that don't take it personally at some level.

All in all, I find it's far better to distance a campaign from the option. The only exception would be a campaign where a key part of the campaign is the possiblity of PvP situations (for example, a Birthright campaign where the players are playing competing regents).
 

freebfrost

Explorer
Crothian said:
Okay, what good then?
I'll answer this one since I started the original thread on this.

The good for the situation was finding a common ground for an uncommon character that I am playing to be a part of the group.

I have little use for a stereotypical dark stranger in the tavern or heroes being summoned by the king type meeting, and I would venture that my group is of a like mindset. We had a cow over the one time our DM tried to get us to be caravan guards.

Anyways, I had an idea for a very isolated and young female druid, but needed some way to join up with the party. A challenging idea even for the DM in this case, but that's what I like to run - challenging characters.

The DM had worked it so that the main party would meet me in the forest tracking a group of missing children, so I was reluctantly working with the group, but didn't see an IC reason to continue working with them. Vague promises of helping me in my personal quest didn't really ring true as I thought about it, so when the ranger's player did something I saw could be questionable in my PC's eyes, I leapt at the chance to engage him. As it turned out, it fell to blows, which is actually even better.

Now I have a PC who is remorseful for her actions, who has already taken steps to make amends and is continuing to do so in the forest while the rest of the party is in town. I have to think of creative ways to help the group and eventually become trusted by the group while trying to make sense of the things I have seen in my contact with civilization and their "weird" rules about not attacking people.

And that's fun and that's good.

Where's the bad? The other players aren't upset. The DM isn't upset. The only people upset are the people here on ENWorld who seem to think that this kind of action is evil with a capital "E" and only want to tell me how to run my own characters.

In my experience if you have a good group of mature roleplayers, interplay conflict just gives more fuel to feed off of for the game. I find it a shame that more people haven't reached that level and instead just want to sit around and play it at the old "you meet in a tavern and go off to slay the dragon" level.

That's just plain boring to me.
 

Crothian

First Post
freebfrost said:
Vague promises of helping me in my personal quest didn't really ring true as I thought about it, so when the ranger's player did something I saw could be questionable in my PC's eyes, I leapt at the chance to engage him. As it turned out, it fell to blows, which is actually even better.

Did you kill the other character? And why would the rest of the party want to deal with your character who attacked their friend?

Sure, there is some roleplaying that can evolve from it, but it just seems that there are better ways to get a character to jion the group.
 

MavrickWeirdo

First Post
Actually in my PbP game, 2 of the character's fought when they first met. One was a elf guard on patrole, the other was a halfling rogue sneaking around. Guard spotted the rogue, halfling tried to run, they grappled. Guard brought halfling in. Halfling was released on lack of evidence. (Apparently sneaking around at night is not actually illegal.)

however there was no bloodshed.
 

Threedub

First Post
Crothian said:
But I don't forbid it, I found a better way to deal with it is play with people that just don't do it.

I'm with Crothian here, at least 98% of the time. We don't forbid it but I play with a group that understands that it is a group game, and PvP ends up with someone dead and usually splits the party (ie campaign over). However, it has happened, has made in-character sense and was what should have been done at the time. But it happens rarely because we push for characters that can work together at creation.

I spent many of my younger D&D years (late 80's, early 90's) playing with people where everything ended up in PvP. I was one of the principal PvPers. The game was about killing and taking stuff, and if my PC buddy had more stuff--well he was on the list. Cure Light Wounds cost 100gp. The mage saved his spells until he really needed them. The cleric would use Sanctuary rather than turning, just to watch his fellows battle it out and chuckle. Then I grew up and figured out it wasn't really a competitive game, but rather a cooperative one.
 

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