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New GM asking a few questions.

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#1 Golvorn



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Posted 22 March 2013 - 06:34 AM

Hello. In the next few weeks I am going to host my first Black Crusade game with 4-5 players. I have DMed DND 2-3 times before with this group, at large it was a case of it was fun but the group spent most of the time pouring torch oil on eachothers sleeping bags and setting them alight to the extent that i had to take them all into the kitchen individually to ask the precise time that they intended to murder each other. The adventure ended with the Ratmen plot to poison the water suply and kill the knight undiscovered when i decided that for all the chaos they'de caused in the village as well as the mass hallucinations from a certain magic dagger i had added to a treasure mound on a whim, caused the adventurers to be chased from the village by a massive mob of villagers. All in all it was a fun but not nccessarily productive half day. However i'm hoping this BC campeign will be more structured. I'm intending to run a reduced power version of the Broken chains adventure. So in sequence my first few questions would be:


1) How do keep the party from gutting each other straight out of the stasis chamber? One of my players is a utter Khorn fanboy and has already annouced his goal for the campeign is to construct a imitation gorechild and meet Angron. However he is also dedicated to playing him like a charge head on/negoiation is for noobs phycopath. I've considered placing binding wards on him perhaps crafted by the inquisition and corrupted by the Deamonhost in Broken chains.


2) I plan to make the build up of equipment  power painfully slow restricting the weapons availible in the adventure. To counter this i hope to make a far bigger thing of weapon upgrading with large amounts of houseruled mods. Firstly to what degree should i reduce the enemy power to conpensate? I'm considering not doiung so whatsoever to absolutely force smart thinking and cooperation.


3) A bit of a silly one but to what extent do you make use of accents. My vioce naterally is very deep and gravely,(i am the most masculin ***** ever,) so i think i've got marines covered aswell as the daemons however i am awful at female vioces I can manage posh women but am struggling to think of a voice for the queen of carron, should i just abandon the accents for her or reinvent the character as male.

4) Music for atmosphere and dictophone for Vox recordings yay or nay?



#2 Amroth



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Posted 22 March 2013 - 11:19 AM

Hi Golvorn,

For question one of your query you may find it worth reading the thread "One week until my campaign launches and I was wondering" by Eggmancorp which deals with a similiar question and has a number of very good responses on how it should be treated. It is lower down in this GM subsection.

Personally I really liked the idea that each player should come up with a reason why their characters should work with the other members and not try to destroy them and if they couldn't then tell them they will need to make another character that can.

If you have the type of players who really don't care and still want to make the game work "quite difficult under these circumstances" you could have something like a binding ritual placed on the group meaning that anything that happens to one member will affect them all equally (I.E. one member dies they all need to roll to see how much infamy they lose as if they all died). I think I remember reading something like this somewhere, it may have been the GM screen but my memory is a bit hazy. This will not only give them no reason to kill each other but should give them a genuine reason to actually look out for each other as they are looking after their own interestes by doing so.

Also remind them that while the Chaos Gods are largely uncaring about loss of life, actions which stuff up team members (and thus fail to achieve the goals of the Gods) are likely to lead to dire consequences (possibly extra mutations where either the GM chooses a bad one specifically as punishment or where any beneficial mutations are re-rolled until a bad one is rolled). Ultimately though you would hope your troupe would be mature enough that they don't these kind of incentives they can be useful and can even add to the role-playing experience.

For the question of power levels I think keeping it at a challenging level is certainly a good idea and will encourage the characters to think and possibly interact where they can instead of resorting to mindless violence. Remember even a Khorne Berserker need not be stupid they should be able to reason and strategise, after all if they die pointlessly then that is a lot less skulls that they have been able to collect and no daemonhood for them. If they still persist on just charging in without tactics or strategy feel free not too hold back and as their infamy vanishes they will either change their tactics or make more intelligent characters next time.

I like the idea you had about theme music and vox transmission I say if it adds to the atmosphere of the game and isn't too disruptive go for it!

Finally with voices I wouldn't worry too much about trying to capture the actual voice or accent itself. Tones and inflections are more important for capturing the essence of the NPC and even for female NPC's possibly just lightening the voice and mannerisms might be more effective than trying to actually imitate a female voice as this would probably prove to be more comical than realistic.

Well hopefully they advice is of some use to you and good luck with your game!

#3 Golvorn



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Posted 22 March 2013 - 10:00 PM

Thanks for your advice, Just talked over the binding idea with my group and they once I explained the reasoning behind it they accepted without serious  complaint.

#4 K0balt



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Posted 27 March 2013 - 03:58 AM

1) They need to understand that without each other, they will die, as they'll never get out/ahold of the ship on time if they are at each other's throats. Cohesion should build up over time, and binding them should be unnecessary. Even a Khorne Berzerker will die to even something as mundane as a well-entrenched horde of lasgun-wielding fanatics if he has no back-up. They have been on that ship for hundreds of years. They have no one they can trust except each other.

2) I pretty much do the same thing (as in strong enemies, encouraged to personnalize their weapons), but in the end the power they'll wield will have little to do with the guns they carry. If you find something too powerful, nerf it, but don't artificially restrict access to it (you can and should however rule that no, they can not find a mastercrafted plasma gun on the most backwater planet of the Vortex).

3) Not at all, unless you're very good with voices. People will make up the voices in their head listening to you, what you can't overlook is the NPCs' manner of speech and personnalities, which you should really work on. A character is a remembered by the way he interacts with the players, not by how you make him sound.

4) Music in RPGs is not my thing, I frankly think it's not suited for long playing sessions, and I really don't have the same taste in music as my players. I find it too disruptive, but if you can find music that fits well as a background, fits the situation and you are always ready to change it at a moment's notice, go for it.

Good luck!

#5 eliphas8



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Posted 30 March 2013 - 11:18 AM

I'd recomend watching Counter Monkey for some tips and examples of how to gm a game that goes better than the one you described. While some of it is rather unhelpful (because the guy who makes it likes to tell his own little gaming anecdotes for some videos rather than tips) it does give a lot of really good tips that you should remember for the game. 

This one is a pretty good video explaining a lot of stuff. http://spoonyexperim...g-a-great-game/ Its also really really freaking long so watch it in chunks.

Also I'd endorse his tip of starting with a published adventure like Broken Chains or something so you're good there.

#6 Quietus1



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Posted 08 May 2013 - 08:42 AM

Well, the first thing they need to understand is that, despite Imperial propaganda, all agents of Chaos are not slavering psychopaths who turn on each other at every opportunity. If that were the case, there would be no such things as the "Forces of Chaos", as the armies of Chaos would never get 10 feet without axing each other. Even Knorne berserkers form armies and harvest the skulls of their enemies, not necessarily just whoever is in arms reach. (Were not that so, how could the World Eater's leigon even exist?)

If the issue is too many of the players are devotees of opposing powers (whether of the four greater or innumerable lesser gods), it might help if one of the players is of Chaos Undivided, and is powerful/charismatic enough to assume a nominal leadership role. Traditionally, in both 40k and fantasy Chaos, the great strength of Chaos Undivided is to bring opposing factions that would normally fight each other into a unified force under their banner. (Refer to such figures as Abbadon and Archaon).

Should no player fit, perhaps an NPC can fill that role until the players learn that cooperation brings greater glory than infighting.

#7 Quietus1



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Posted 08 May 2013 - 08:45 AM

Heh, just  noticed the date of the OP. Oh well.

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