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filliman

Am I a poor GM?

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Alright. So we're playing Black Crusade, and my players have successfully player-killed themselves into a corner, and are in the service of a Chaos Marine. They have gotten to the point where the Chaos Marine no longer refers to them by name, but by "Minion". they don't even try to improve their lot, they just keep killing each other, while their master, (and i do mean master, they are clearly simpering minions and make no attmept to hide it) watches gleefully.

 

Not only do they make no attempt to save themselves, they blame me for painting themselves into a corner and accuse me of intentionally screwing them over.

 

So my question is: have I done something wrong, or are they being irrational? This is my first Black Crusade game that I am GM-ing.

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Black crusade is a game where characres with wildly different agendas and short-term goals cooperate to achieve a long-term goal.

It requires some skill from GM to give players a reason to cooperate and means to pursue their own goals. It also requires some maturity from players not to turn this into pvp or omnicidal gorefest.

Now just let me guess, your players arent that much experienced as well in BC?

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We've done Warhammer Roleplay before. Rogue Trader, then Only War, now Black Crusade. They were nervous being, and I quote "Worth less than the dust on the Golden Throne." They know Warhammer, just not how the Screaming Vortex works. Admittedly it can be hard to go from OW or RT to BC, but they insist on angering the World Eater npc on their ship, kill each other for the flimsiest of reasons. the last psyker to die summoned a bloodthirster and demanded Dark Patronage, despite the book he read to enact the ritual telling him specifically "psykers should never attempt to summon anything khornate, they will put your skull on the skull throne." I have placed numerous chances to move on, to reconcile their differences, and move on. Instead they use it to kill each other again.

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Hi filiman,

that is hard to tell since we would need to know much more. Your post is basically saying "they are doing it wrong and blaming me!" ...and going to great lenght in back-and-forth q&a Posts here could be a bit futile.

 

How about the following:
- prepare to reset the game (new plot, characters and all), but before you do:
- ask your Players why they feel that way.
- ask the Players why there characters kill another off
- explain to them what you had in mind instead.

Basicially, one of two things can happen
- you find out that they got the wrong signals from what you as a GM had set up so far

or

- you find out that they all just make up sorry excuses, blaming you while some of them just want to kil another off

go from there.

EDIT
And with "go from there", I mean "prepare to start anew or to just let it be"

Edited by Gregorius21778
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I am a firm believer that unless the GM throws players into a blender each and every session of the game and putting them in places where their deaths are inevitable, that there is no situation which players are constantly getting themselves killed without some degree of negligence or poor strategy on their part. A truly creative or tactical player can almost always find a way out of a bad situation and if they like, feel free to drop the odd hint their way. Good example was a Deathwatch game, I'd somewhat screwed the party up trying to kill a load of genestealers surrounding us. I'd ended up manifesting a load of bloodletters into the place which also had eyes on the party. Under such circumstances it would have been a wipe but we managed to come up with a way out (with the nod of the GM) to use our last tank of promethium for the flamer and blow a hole in a weak part of the floor, drop through and make a swift exit..

 

Feel free at this point to argue with me on any of this however most situations the players either need to withdraw or actually concede defeat and bow in submission but many are often too stubborn to admit that. Submission may allow them to live, open up a new plotline etc...

Edited by Calgor Grim

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We only get your side of the story, so it's a bit hard to say for sure.

But from what you write, you're only a poor GM if you're a GM with not-enough money.

No clue if that's the case.

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Well I am poor in that i haven't the money for the other books for BC. Now roll with me because my thought proccess is going to meander. In their defense, they are actually trying thinking their way out mostly. On my part, the hints I drop are often, in hidsight, kinda cryptic. On their part, I have asked why they keep killing each other. One said "That guy was weird, so I power-fisted him." The rest basically said they felt they couldn't trust anyone around them, which from my perspective I could see was false, and perhaps should have laid clues showing they were trustworthy for my part as GM. I have also asked (just this morning) what they all expected from the game itself. They all thought the entire point of the game was Chaos because lulz. For my part I really do need to explain more. And I agree with you Calgor, submission is not so bad, you can always later just ditch the warlord on the next world when he isn't looking. And for my part, I haven't exactly done much to keep their eyes on the prize of enjoying the wealth and wine of the Imperium via black crusade awesomeness. They never have been fight-heavy, and have admirably dodged any real fights they would have otherwise had to handle (once by building a Saw-style series of situations and got them infamy when they advertised it across the Vortex) what later happens is when they try to bask in their intelligence, someone does something that ignites a civil war in their warband. Feel free to counter me on this, because I probably am screwing up somewhere. If you need/want an explaination of each characer, lemme know.

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Another way to go about this is to put a leash on one or two player and watch them get the rest in line rapidly.  

Example:

The alpha legionare or tzeetch prophet learns that another PC is the key to an unknown puzzle and must live to see that moment.

The nurgle guy gets told to infect the khorne bezerker with a new virus and must be kept alive for it to germinate.

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Thanks for replying so quickly guys, I appreciate it. I've been talking to my players, and I think we have it sorted out. Thank you all again for responding.

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Nothing ever says a GM has to be obvious with his hints. If they miss clues then that's their problem.

Killing someone because they were weird is not a sensible thing to do in the screaming vortex and others can happily enact the same for that very reason. It sounds like they haven't got into the spirit of things and as a GM you can only work and enjoy the player resources you are given. They did not give you much to go with.

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Game of thrones is one of the best reference books for society when the law is stripped away and it comes down to money, power, religion, and reputation for keeping people in check - exactly what the vortex is.

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I shot milk out of my nose this morning reading about the psyker summoning the bloodthirster. 

 

Don't get to upset at your group. When I played my first BC game I was over zealous and REALLY wanted to gain the favor of Khorne. So much so that when we found our first bloodletter I challenged it to single combat, after I got put into bleedout and loosing an arm, my group finished it off by shooting it to death. After a quick stim to stop the bleeding i thought it would be a good idea to try and drink its blood (I thought I would get a gift of chaos or something).... and the GM killed me since I decided to drink freakin daemon blood with negative wounds. 

 

I was a sad panda but I learned my lesson and the games since I have toned down the recklessness. 

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Tell your players to have their characters man up and attempt to improve their lot in life. They're servants of chaos for crying out loud, batraying your masters is a breakfast occurance.

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There is some truth that evil tends to feed on itself. If that's how your group is playing than they are being true to the nature of evil but not really to your game. If your party insists on betraying themselves into a corner then let them die horribly! Not every group is destined to lead a Black crusade! After a TPK or two, explain to them that; Evil or not, Chaotic or not, They must still work together if they want to achieve their ambitions! (Whatever they may be!)

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I shot milk out of my nose this morning reading about the psyker summoning the bloodthirster. 

 

Don't get to upset at your group. When I played my first BC game I was over zealous and REALLY wanted to gain the favor of Khorne. So much so that when we found our first bloodletter I challenged it to single combat, after I got put into bleedout and loosing an arm, my group finished it off by shooting it to death. After a quick stim to stop the bleeding i thought it would be a good idea to try and drink its blood (I thought I would get a gift of chaos or something).... and the GM killed me since I decided to drink freakin daemon blood with negative wounds. 

 

I was a sad panda but I learned my lesson and the games since I have toned down the recklessness. Vrakas14 said this.

 

Ha Ha! :lol: What a laugh! Can't believe you would drink daemon blood because most describe it as boiling hot ichor, deadly to drink. Why challenge a bloodthirster? Better start small first.

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There is some truth that evil tends to feed on itself. If that's how your group is playing than they are being true to the nature of evil but not really to your game. If your party insists on betraying themselves into a corner then let them die horribly! Not every group is destined to lead a Black crusade! After a TPK or two, explain to them that; Evil or not, Chaotic or not, They must still work together if they want to achieve their ambitions! (Whatever they may be!)

 

Filliman,

 

I fully agree with Radwraith's comment.  If your players want to shoot each other in hilarious ways, go and play a couple of sessions of Paranoia.  However, playing Black Crusade is a different beast; they need to have reasons why their characters are participating in the Path to Glory, and why they're banding together as a group.  You might have to reset the campaign and have 'new' characters.  When I was younger, my group and I would accept party-killing behaviour, now I wouldn't.  It is not just the GM's responsibility to make the game fun, but everyone.  If there is someone disruptive, then talk to them, if they don't shape up, then don't invite them for a session... I bet much more gets done, then the other players will see the disruptive influence and as people (not as characters) start moderating their acceptance of disruptive attitudes.

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one thing worth mentioning is the infamy table.  That 20-30 range they start with is freaking prominent.  Your players aren't nobodies.  They have the brains and the attitude to have gotten so far just at the start.

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If they are killing each other without good/valid reasons and simple doing it for fun, they are doing it wrong imho and should be punished by their master. (or by you, the GM). :)

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Good example was a Deathwatch game, I'd somewhat screwed the party up trying to kill a load of genestealers surrounding us. I'd ended up manifesting a load of bloodletters into the place which also had eyes on the party. Under such circumstances it would have been a wipe but we managed to come up with a way out (with the nod of the GM) to use our last tank of promethium for the flamer and blow a hole in a weak part of the floor, drop through and make a swift exit..

This basically sums it up. As a general rule if you find yourself saying "no" to plans like this more often than you say "Yes" then you're doing a bad job as a GM. Its fine to throw them into a meat grinder, but let them be as creative as they can with how they make it out with the minimum loss of limbs.

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Thanks for replying so quickly guys, I appreciate it. I've been talking to my players, and I think we have it sorted out. Thank you all again for responding.

 

What was your solution?

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Thanks for replying so quickly guys, I appreciate it. I've been talking to my players, and I think we have it sorted out. Thank you all again for responding.

 

What was your solution?

 

Kill it with fire?

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They actually did it themselves. See, one of them got all the other players onto the bridge of the plagued ship they were using for transit. He then detonated several plasma cannon flasks he had set around the bridge, resulting in a Total Player Wipe. This made them all stop and think about what they were doing, so by mutual agreement we reset the game, and they cooperate much more (meaning instead of player murder, they trade in favors of all types, and use each other to acheive objectives they could never do themselves "power is not what you can do, but you can get others to do for you")

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A happy ending! Hooray! :)

 

Are we playing DW here? Cause to my players a happy ending is akin to words best not mentioned. Even though, if only my players could sort out there differences. A lot of advice that while good didn't change anything. Ah well, at least every game is a blast. Good luck with your repented group filliman!

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