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Party Infighting?


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#1 Norsehound

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 02:26 AM

Just a wonder here if anyone else has experienced this.

 

I've recently become a part of an EoE campaign as a Rebel agent among a fringer team, and some of them have had dealings with the Empire. Recently things came to a head where both a Rebel frigate (meeting with us to deliver a captured Sector Ranger) and an Imperial Rendelli corvette (sent to recover said ranger) both came to player party summons.

 

Things got tricky in the ship too though, and I was forced to deal with one of our number who was trying to cut a deal with the sector ranger and escape. He also had a wookie buddy who was spacewalking to the transport, to rejoin the player party, who was also pro-imperial. I had about three rebel troopers who were rescued from Ryloth and a former War Droid/Bo'mar cult leader who was also interested in talking to the rebels.

 

Putting a long story short, the player party was divided and there was a struggle over using the force points. The GM tried to handle it evenly and eventually we ended up in the Rebel Frigate, but I wonder if anyone's encountered any level of player infighting like this before and if they had any stories to share. :)

 

(to be clear here it isn't as if we came to blows, but clearly the Twi'lek had his reasons and as an Alliance spy I wouldn't have it. Not when I could deliver a captive Sector Ranger to the Rebellion).


Edited by Norsehound, 01 December 2013 - 02:27 AM.


#2 DoctorWhat

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 03:21 AM

My players are particularly quarrelsome and it often spills over to their characters, especially over disagreements about planning. We have occasionally gotten to the stage where characters are drawing weapons and threatening to shoot each other although sulking is the usual response. We have had characters refusing to come to the aid of others because of this.

Thankfully the, "If you attack another party member, I'll kill all your characters and end the campaign," warning has so far kept them in line and they don't seem to hold grudges from session to session.
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#3 Devik Reeven

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 04:56 AM

As GM, you're telling a story with characters that have free will. I encourage my players to not only have differing views and ideas, but also to stand up when their views are undermined. I tell them that open conflict is also appropriate (assuming they are in a situation where a sudden argument\fight is safe and acceptable), but killing each other should be your last, most avoided option. This type of conflict adds a lot to the role playing and overall story. This hasn't been an issue so far; no one has raised a blaster, or even a hand at each other. I'll make sure to post any future conflicts if they arise. Probably won't be long; my group contains 1 Dark Acolyte and 2 Jedi.



#4 HappyDaze

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 05:46 AM

I don't step in to stop violence between PCs any more than I do to stop violence between any others (which is pretty much just a, "Are you really sure you want to do this?" question).

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#5 Krieger22

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 08:34 AM

It sounds to me like there's some disagreement in your group as to what direction the campaign is going to take - get closer with the Rebel Alliance or remain independent with some possible Imperial leanings. If you think your GM is going to create more situations like this in the future (seems likely, since you're playing a Rebel agent) you might all want to sit down and discuss the future of the campaign.


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#6 themensch

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 10:20 AM

If my PCs have an intra-party conflict I'll usually throw some greater threat at them which forces them to work together and begrudgingly foster a team attitude.  On the one hand, I don't want to shoehorn characters together if their natural instinct is to not get along.  On the other hand, character disagreements can easily enough spill over into the players so I consider it my job to make it all work out before we start blasting each other.



#7 Spjork

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 10:55 AM

It sounds to me like there's some disagreement in your group as to what direction the campaign is going to take - get closer with the Rebel Alliance or remain independent with some possible Imperial leanings. If you think your GM is going to create more situations like this in the future (seems likely, since you're playing a Rebel agent) you might all want to sit down and discuss the future of the campaign.

 

What Krieger said. I'd start an open discussion about where this might be escalating.

 

As a GM, I'd be very reluctant to create zero-sum situations within the party, where one player's victory comes at another one's loss. When you have a profit-monger and an idealist in the group, there's likely to be conflict, but it won't be direct. There's always the chance they can come up with a win-win scenario and the conflict might actually produce fun roleplay. But putting two warring factions in the same group just seems like it's inviting unnecessary animosity. You're not going to find much middle ground between a Rebel spy and an Imperial merc. Not to mention the fact that a party with leanings in both directions is likely going to be a liability to both sides.

 

Personally, I'm not keen on having the tabletop be the only thing holding a group together. There ought to be some common goal or loyalty for the party to rally around, and that's the thing they can appeal to when trying to settle a dispute.



#8 That Blasted Samophlange

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 11:18 AM

If the players aren't having hard feelings towards each other than there isn't an issue.  If their characters are, that's fine as it produces drama to enhance the story.

 

Once again if all the players are fine with the turn of events, I hope it continues.  If the players are upset, or holding a grudge, you have to sit down with them and discuss it.  Or drop the offending players into a rancor pit.  Your choice.


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#9 Desslok

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 11:56 AM

Yeah, what Samophlange said. If the players are all adult and can leave their disagreements at the table, then more power to them. Internal strife sounds like it would make for interesting times. However, if it starts to boil over into real life, then everyone needs to take a step back and breath.

 

And your job as the GM is to be very clear on this point. Talk about the situation with everyone before the game before resorting to drastic measures like the  "If you attack another party member, I'll kill all your characters and end the campaign". Talk first and get everyone on the same page first.



#10 FuriousGreg

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 12:31 PM

I'm in agreement with both Kriger & Samophlange.

I'd add this though, that part of the problem seems your GM's story line (although they may have something wicked planned, you should ask them). EotE, and the series in general, is skewed towards the Empire being the bad guys and nearly all of the material you're likely to get from FFG is going to be along these lines so if you go with a more pro Empire bend you should have all the player's on board. If you're worried about the campaign in progress you should remember, and mention to the rest of the party (with the GM present) that the Empire is NOT pro fringer, it may play good cop to get something from them but ultimately they want complete control over as many aspects of their holdings as possible and will leave anyone not useful any more high and dry, or dead.

 

If you want to avoid further intra-party conflicts along this line I'd make it clear that the PC you are playing is not pro Empire and cannot hang around with PCs that are without eventually turning on them or leaving. Then see what the group thinks, if they don't want to shift then set aside the character you have and make a new one that fits in with the more pro Empire slant of the party. It's not that I'm against intra-party conflicts it's just that if you have a PC with a core belief that is the opposite of the rest of the party it's going to generate generate conflict that you can't really resolve unless one or the other "side" gives in, and giving in occasionally is okay but having to do it or force it on others every time it comes up is not much fun in the long run. So as great as a long term intra party conflict can be in a novel where the author can come up with great character development and an exciting resolution etc. it's not so great in an RPG.


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#11 Norsehound

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 01:01 PM

It isn't as if fist fights have come up between players out of the games. It's been shooting each other (sometimes not with stun bolts) for the varying conflicting player conflicts over the session but the PCs still seem to be working together for a larger goal. For instance, the Bo'marr war droid shot someone the Twi'lek really wanted to talk to, resulting in some hijinks, but we're still on the mission together to find (now) the Hutt superweapon to destroy it. The alliance gave us the debreifing for this assignment and they're releasing the player party on good faith.

 

The GM had the campaign...sorta? scripted out, but he allowed me to include my Rebel spy character on the thought that it could take the campaign in some interesting direction. Originally it seems the Syndicate/Black sun and the Empire were interested in this superweapon, but putting the rebels into the equation adds more conflict to the situation.

 

Besides, the player party may have people working with the empire but not actual Imperial agents. I'm a rebel agent with some pull with the Rebellion.



#12 Kshatriya

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 01:20 PM

One player being a rebel agent and another being an Imperial…what, sympathizer? Informer? Anyway, that should have been discussed before the game began because otherwise, this situation was set up from the start. Certainly no one player/character should be dominating the direction of the game, whether that is leaning toward helping the Rebellion or assisting the Empire. And even if the majority of the group goes one way, at this point it's a little late to ask pro-Imperial OR pro-Rebel guy to do a face turn IC without reasons for it, and also somewhat inappropriate for the will of the majority to force the player to do so either IC or OOC. 



#13 CaptainRaspberry

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 01:54 PM

My only concern when the characters are infighting is whether or not it's metagame-related. If there's an outside influence on the conflict, I'll do something to ablate the outcome and pull the involved parties aside to talk it out. There's no metagaming allowed at my table.

 

Otherwise, if it comes out of honest character traits, I let it play. None of my plot designs are so rigid that I can't alter them to fit the players' mood. My typical warning is the game will flow in the direction of the strongest decisions; if there's a strong pro-Imperial bias among the players, the one Rebel spy will be hard pressed to carry out her duty, and that's the cross she has to bear.

 

That said, in EotE, it's easy to make it clear that everybody's out to screw the players, and therefore keep them loyal to each other. Well, more or less.


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#14 Col. Orange

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 09:02 AM

PvP has only come into our games infrequently, but when it has it has been some of the most intense and exciting play of our history.

 

The most memorable occasion was probably when two PC groups (same players, just characters from two different campaigns) got together and the disgraced ex-stormtrooper lured the failed, Clone Wars era Jedi onto his ship to investigate a strange artefact only he would understand.  The artefact was a container with a ysalamir.  As soon as the Jedi got close to it, the trooper stunned him.  His intention was to take the Jedi off to the Imperial remnant to buy his way back in.

Our group's Gand Bounty Hunter didn't trust the trooper at all, and had installed a tracking device on his ship.  He tailed the guy and, when clear of interferance, disabled the fleeing ship.  The trooper spacewalked over to the bounty hunter's ship (had a zero-g maintenance rig), sliced the airlock and snuck aboard.

Unfortunately for him, Gand Bounty Hunter was paranoid and had installed all kinds of traps.  By the time the Gand got to the trooper, the human was on his last legs.

Why'd he go to all that trouble?  To have a Jedi obligated to him.


Edited by Col. Orange, 02 December 2013 - 09:04 AM.

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#15 Spjork

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 12:52 PM

PvP has only come into our games infrequently, but when it has it has been some of the most intense and exciting play of our history.

 

Hmm. I'd never thought of tabletop in terms of "PvP" and "PvE." That's a good analogy, and it would probably explain my aversion to the former, as I've always preferred camaraderie to competitiveness in my games.



#16 HappyDaze

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 12:55 PM

Remember too that all PCs use the same pool of Destiny Points. If they use them up scrapping with one another, the Dark Side pool is going to be that much deeper!


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#17 LibrariaNPC

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 02:47 PM

Honestly, if the group is mature enough to handle it, I've always been one to let it play out.

 

I normally make sure the group understands what is going on and what CAN happen when a conflict of interest comes up like that. For a few examples:

 

1) A player joined a group late in the game. By that point, the players were leaning toward the Rebellion (Rebellion contacts and contracts, but weren't trusted with major details of bases), and this player wanted to be an Imperial Spy/Recruiter. By the end of the third game, the Jedi was going Sith, the Ex-Stormtrooper sold out, and the Smuggler that put them toward the Rebels in the first place was ready to stun this recruiter and launch her out of an airlock.

We thankfully sidestepped the whole thing when the semester ended and two players didn't come back the following semester.

 

2) I ran an Order 66 game. The group (a pilot and collection of padawan learners going to reunite with their masters) had a group of clones as guards. Order 66 passed, and the clones ordered the pilot to remain in the cockpit while they took care of things. The pilot witnessed the group kill the clones.

He was prepared to jump the ship into the nearest sun, self destruct, or kill the life support.

Note: this was in GAME ONE.

 

3) My current group isn't very keen on the Empire (mostly due to random Motivation rolls being against slavery and wanting to see the Empire fall), and one of my players joining the party late is a former Imperial Trooper (not a stormie, just a normal soldier). He was informed of the party's leanings, and decided to stay with it.

He is looking forward to see what happens when the party realizes what his past is.

 

 

Basically, if the GM is keeping everyone informed and putting some of the news out there for the group, you shouldn't be running into any real problems.


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#18 RedfordBlade

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 09:51 PM

I've had party infighting occur in almost every RPG campaign I've ever played, with maybe ONE exception. Sometimes it adds interesting drama, but most of the time it is idiotic and frustrating, whether I'm a Player or a GM.

 

Hell, in my longest-running game (I'm the GM), the PCs tried to kill each other DURING A BOSS FIGHT, and nearly got TPK'd by the 100-meter-tall monster that "snuck up" on them during the chaos. Later in that same campaign, one player tried to infiltrate the Big Bad's organization, and ended up ambushing the other PCs, nearly getting them all killed or arrested.

 

In fact, the main reason my Age of Rebellion GM started his game is to give us a story where the players will actually support each other.

 

 

2) I ran an Order 66 game. The group (a pilot and collection of padawan learners going to reunite with their masters) had a group of clones as guards. Order 66 passed, and the clones ordered the pilot to remain in the cockpit while they took care of things. The pilot witnessed the group kill the clones.

He was prepared to jump the ship into the nearest sun, self destruct, or kill the life support.

Note: this was in GAME ONE.

 

Wait, I think I've heard this story from the pilot's POV!

In the story I heard, the Padawans' players were trying to accrue as many Dark Side points as possible because they wanted to play an evil campaign. The pilot, upon realizing the Jedi were rapidly falling to the Dark Side, was considering stopping them with the aforementioned self-destruction methods.

Is this the same game?


Edited by RedfordBlade, 03 December 2013 - 05:15 AM.


#19 PrettyHaley

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 06:41 AM

My GM has a rule, sort of, about this.

Our characters can be quarrelsome and not seem to get along, like Leia and Han in Episode 4. We an even be somewhat opposed to one another like Jane and the Tams in Firefly. But it is up to us to find a way to come together as allies, if not friends.

In my games, that just meant we're all friends... who argue a lot. Mostly because boys are stupid. :P

Edited by PrettyHaley, 03 December 2013 - 06:43 AM.

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#20 Col. Orange

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Posted 03 December 2013 - 06:50 AM

In my games, that just meant we're all friends... who argue a lot. Mostly because boys are stupid. :P

 

Hey!-

 

Oh who am I kidding.


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