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RebelDave

OK. What do I throw at this guy...

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My usual response to these kinds of posts is Rivals + Auto-fire weapons + low crit.  Or gas grenades.  Or snipers.  those are still a viable options here, but lets look at some less heavy-handed options.

 

Is there any reason the pirates aren't already alerted to their presence, or could be at a moment's notice?  That seems like the easiest way.  Nothing like a modified probe droid to find them...

 

Anyway, I would balk at the idea that one guy could subdue an entire crew, it's possible the player has an inflated idea of how much his character can take on, and doesn't know how far he can expect to get, so you might want to point out the difficulties.  The entrance is only going to get him to the base level, and each section has it's own set of doors that can be closed.  The bridge is probably closed by default, it's a Sil5 Gozanti after all.

 

Also, the crew knows the ship, where all the buttons are, how to lock sections off, etc.  His vibrorapier isn't going to cut through the blast doors, and that will give the crew time to call for help.  If they fight hand to hand, defending a doorway provides cover (one setback), and I'd argue hard cover (2 setback) because of the knowledge of the ship.

 

But if you want to dissuade him from even making the attempt, only a show of power that the player can respect in-game is going to deter him.

 

I think what whafrog has proposed is your best bet.  Make his plan a total PITA.  Lots of crew, tight spaces, blind corners, ambushes, pirates in groups, locked doors, etc.  Give him plenty of opportunity to see that it's not going the be easy, there will likely be fatalities, and he probably still won't succeed.  

 

If he persists, raise the alarm.  Make it clear that the rest of his party taking tons of fire is his fault.  At that point he can persist in trying to steal the ship, leaving his employers to die (and then he won't get paid), or he can go help them, outside the ship, at which point you lock it off and the game proceeds as normal.

 

Also point out to the player what you explained to us: There's no reason for the party to come get him afterwards.  If the character is on this mission for money, then he should have no problem roleplaying that, which means he should stay close to make sure he gets paid and not abandoned.  Remind him of the risk, too: If he gets caught, what incentive does the party have to come to his aid?

 

Alternatively, make it clear that the pirates are waaaaaay more scared of the BBEG than they are of his pointy stick.  They will fight to the death to defend their ship, which is basically their livelihood.  So they'll keep coming at him, he'll have to keep killing them, and he'll have to gobs of conflict.  They came for the crates, not for the ship.  To accomplish their goals, he doesn't need to be on the ship, he doesn't need to steal the ship, so there's no justifiable reason for him to be killing pirates to achieve either goal.

 

The point is, the player is trying to outsmart the plot.  Not necessarily on purpose, but it's still effectively what he's trying to do.  

 

Don't let him.  

 

You can reward him for being creative by slowing down the ship or making it less capable, but don't let him completely remove the ship from play (If destroys the engine, repair it while they're loading the crates on their own ship; If he steals a part, they have a spare; if we wipes the memory core, they restore from a back up, etc, etc).  He's leveraging his character's stats and his roleplaying ability to make things hard for you, and it's okay for you to leverage everything at your disposal (Basically the rest of the universe) to make it equally hard for him.  Give him plenty of warning to back down from that course, but if he persists, throw the consequences of his actions at him.  HARD.  It'll make him think twice about going gung-ho after getting warned away from a course of action.

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Just let him have his fun this time and then ask him not to do it again. 

 

This, IMO, is the worst option. 

 

I hate to "Pen in" My players. and I certainly hate to feel Penned in myself. 

If my players want to try to do something... I certainly let them have at it. But they should also Be prepared for the fact that thy CAN get themselves in to deep and I as the GM am not going to hold back nor fudge their butts out of trouble..

 

You want to open that can of worms, I will certainly let you try. 

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Actually i love the crazy ideas players come up with at the table, often creating the most memorable moments.

 

What would pirates do if they caught him sneaking around? probably capture him, interrogate him then leave him on an island in the middle of the ocean with no food or water (possibly a large stash of Rum in an underground store room) . But what crucial piece of info did the PC overhear while onboard the ship? or did he do the sabotaging before being caught so that the Pirates can now be tracked?

 

i would use it to give the player a chance to shine, then need to be rescued by the Party, thus creating a chance to feed plot to the party and creating a Party Connection with the same stone

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Just let him have his fun this time and then ask him not to do it again. 

 

This, IMO, is the worst option. 

 

I hate to "Pen in" My players. and I certainly hate to feel Penned in myself. 

If my players want to try to do something... I certainly let them have at it. But they should also Be prepared for the fact that thy CAN get themselves in to deep and I as the GM am not going to hold back nor fudge their butts out of trouble..

 

You want to open that can of worms, I will certainly let you try. 

 

So you should leave the rest of the group to sit around doing nothing while he runs off and does stuff alone?

 

By the way, the 'not do it again' is run off on your own. It throws off the entire game.

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just because he is off on his own does not mean the rest of the universe stops to wait. keep going around the table, if its structured time have a single initiative track (its easier!) and he gets his turn when its his turn... if its narrative then just keep flipping back and forward between them, give him a minute or 2 of attention, then back to the others for 4 or so minutes. try to jump back and forward just as something is about to happen, or just after, such as "he opens a door and sees whats inside; 2 pirates who are very surprised and diving for blasters." this keeps him thinking about what he is doing, planing ideas etc. but doesn't distract the others for too long, and they can laugh at his misfortune and cheer his successes.

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Partly what Richard jsut said and part.

 

you know what, I had a group split up, and they understand what that means, I have to split time between the different parts of the party dealing with each situation. 

they had part of the group goto town and the other part stay back at "base".

The 2 at base got attacked by a large force...

Like 12-1 odds

 

I thought the 2 at base would make a run for it. They didn't ...

The group sat for 2+ hours while these two characters Fought it out with the large force of enemy. 

Everyone one Was caught up in every Die roll of the fight. 

 

One of the two character ended up perishing at the enemies hand. But the other character survived by the skin of his teeth and the burning of some Honor (Destiny points basically ) 

He had 1 point of health remaining at the end of the fight .. and everyone Thought that Battle was Awesome.. Even though only 2 players were involved... 1 of which spent a the greater part of half the battle dead. 

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Seems to me like a military ship like a Gozanti should have a self-destruct mechanism. If the bad guys start losing, they could hit the self-destruct and evacuate. Or they could pull the FTL trick of trapping the PC in a room, then decompressing it. Or they could mess with the artificial gravity to pin the PC down. Or one of the bad guys could have a Sunder weapon and try to take out the PC's vibroblade. Or they could just surrender, knowing that their ship was recently rebuilt by Jawas and breaks down so often that it's more trouble to operate than it's worth.

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Splitting the party isn't always a bad thing if handled well by the GM.  The party in the films is always getting split up so there is a precedent.

 

I say let him do it, but the idea that he can subdue the whole crew is a pipe dream.  Just boost most, if not all of the pirates on board to Rival status and he'll have a hell of a time doing it alone.

 

I say let it all play out, the point of this system is to say "yes, and?".  No need to punish the player for a creative idea (no matter how far fetched).  Doesn't mean he should be allowed to succeed though!  :D

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Well... the deck plan I plan on using has the player enter into a corridor the goes Port and Starbord, and Fore to the bridge.

 

The bridge is sealed off, and whichever way he goes he runs into 6 pirates in a communal area. (2 Minion groups of 3), PLUS a Rival (Pirate Captain stats). Regardless of which direction he goes.

 

The Captain will be melee armed and focused, so he can get a nice duel, with the Rival having backup from the 6 others. They call for help, the group in the other room can flank him, while heading to the bridge to secure it and inform everyone else in the camp.

 

The rest of the group will hear the transmissions via the cargo skiff, and might end up encountering forces outside.

 

There are further pirates deeper in the ship preventing him reaching the engines.

 

Hopefully, he should face sufficient forces to make him rethink his plan and depart with the rest of the group.

 

The Pirates wont back down, far too more fearful of their boss (whos outside), than some random thug they outnumber, with reinforcements just outside.

 

I will let him duel with the Rival, hopefully forcing him to make a fighting retreat, the other pirates will watch and jeer, only jumping in if the Rival is defeated.

 

IF he manages to defeat/subdue ALL the pirates, the ship cannot depart due to the sealed bridge and crew inside, so the best he could do (if he has time) is prevent the ship, or at least, slow it down, from chasing the PC Groups ship off world.

 

Where I will have a smaller freighter and a couple of cloakshapes waiting for the chase through the asteroid field circling the planet.

 

 

HOPEFULLY, this should pan out how I intend, and create some tension and drama.

Without forcing me to tell the player "No, you can't do that, becuase it buggers my plot up" which noone wants to hear.

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He chose to be force sensitive, as he steps aboard he could feel a strong dark presence followed by a sense of impending doom. That should be enough to make him rethink his plan.

If he continues a swift capture should follow, then as the party is ready to leave the pirates can offer to exchange the captured pc for the stolen crates. If the party accepts then the pc will be in debt to the party and will have to stick around to pay them back.

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Here is one thing you could do, likely in conjunction with ramping up the difficulty.

 

Have it so that if he enters the ship he trips an alarm. Let him make a tough perception check to see it too. If he succeeds, he notices the entrance, and likely all others, are covered by a thermal/motion tracking security system that uses facial recognition. Basically there is no terminal to slice it from and not much in the way of options for tricking the sensors. If he enters the ship, the crew will immediately be alerted. If he fails, once he crosses the threshold there are immediate loud klaxons and strobes, all the doors lockdown(requiring you to slice/hack them open individually. And there are lots of doors). Any pirates he encounters should be pretty beefy and well armed(although don't give them anything you aren't willing to let your PCs have)

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Let him knock out 1-2 people. Put him in a hallway with a droid. If he doesn't take out the droid in one turn, it seals off the hall, and activates the fire supression system. He is out cold. Pirates dump his naked unconsious body before they take off. If he takes out the droid, the smoke from the injured droid sets off the fire suppresion system and he still ends up naked on the tarmack.

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Let him knock out 1-2 people. Put him in a hallway with a droid. If he doesn't take out the droid in one turn, it seals off the hall, and activates the fire supression system. He is out cold. Pirates dump his naked unconsious body before they take off. If he takes out the droid, the smoke from the injured droid sets off the fire suppresion system and he still ends up naked on the tarmack.

 

 

 

 

Wicked!

Edited by Artuard

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What kind of things might deter the character/player?

 

Personally I would go with:

The Captain's prize Nexu/targ/whatever-vicious-hound-beast lounging on the entry ramp. As the player gets closer it raises its head, sniffs the air and gives a little growl that makes the nearby pirates who are loading supplies or working on a nearby landing strut pause and peer into the darkness wondering what the beast is alerted to. The closer the character gets the more agitated the beast gets and the more alert the pirates become. Give the guy some stealth rolls but let him know the beast has got some keen senses as it gets more aggressive the closer he gets. You could even have the Captain himself walk onto the ramp and scratch the beast behind the ear and "What's with the noise? Do you smell something Lassie?"

 

If he continues have the beast finally catch his scent, let out a braying howl and start the chase, followed by some blaster wielding pirates to chase him all the way back to the other PCs, forcing them to take take off under a hail of blaster fire...

 

If he thinks he might get busted by the pet he might rethink storming the ship.

 

Hope that helps

Edited by Ebonwarlock

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This response has been touched on by another poster, but here's my recommendation...

 

It's a simple plan, really:

1) Talk to him, out of character, and let him know that you don't think his plan of assaulting the star ship *alone* is a good one.  It's crewed by too many pirates, and if he tries it, you're not going to go easy on him, so he should start planning a fresh character because he's probably going to need it.

2) If he doesn't listen, follow through.

 

Note: Don't change your original plan for what's on board the ship.  Don't add *or* subtract from what you originally planned to have on board.  That's right.  Leave the grenades you said you eliminated (remember, the *pirates* know about the grenades, and where to find them, the PC has to luck into them).  Realize that the *moment* he draws attention to himself, he's going to be able to get jumped by the *entire* rest of the crew on the next round (two max).  Star ships are relatively *small* places.

 

If he pulls it off, it'll be a campaign-changing moment, and played up right it'll be a gaming story you tell for years to come.  On top of that, the *characters* will gain a reputation as bad-asses, and their enemies will crank things up against them a notch or two in the future.

If he fails, he's been sunk by his own petard, and he just might have learned the lesson that heroes don't always *survive*, much less win.

Edited by Voice

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why not simply talk about it? tell the player you'd rather not split up the group like that and they will most likely come up with another plan.

 

if this doesn't work i think you are in a bad spot. i don't think gm's should plan their adventures around foiling player plans. this just sounds weird to me. players should be allowed to do anything, but sometimes the problems their actiosn create can be seen beforehand (you don't want the split party). in those cases, talk it over.

 

if he really wants to follow through and you really want the plan not to work... well, you're a gm. if you can't kill a plakyer you're doing it wrong. ^_^

 

the plan sounds dumb anyway. 1 guy does all the work, so everyone else can escape? why don't they do the work together? :blink:

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As a GM i personally wouldn't bother trying to 'up' the shenanigans on the ship he's trying to steal... I'd hit him where it hurts, in his morality.

 

If he's as good a player as you've said, bring in a bunch of moral choices that forces his character to turn around and face the bigger threat/moral quandary. Someone has already mentioned the other players may need help in some way and he'll need to turn back to sort it out. Being a force user with a rapier who purports to not 'kill' others is a ripe opportunity to have him question his decisions about what he's doing.

 

You could even ask the other players to act their characters in ways that draw his character back for the sake of the story, such as calling for help/reinforcements and not abandoning the job for the sake of his personal obligations to his own code of justice (or whatever the player is going for narratively with his character).

 

Just some further snap ideas

 

- Tee up one of the players to be held hostage and he has to turn back to rescue them

- He sees 1-2 captives of the pirates being led away from the ship somewhere which gives him a choice to pursue and save them or ignore their fates

- Behind the scenes narrate that the pirate ship has had to leave the scene and he can only sabotage certain things in the camp/landing site for when it returns. Either way his plan for stealing the ship and splitting the party has been foiled but at least he's done something in character that may help later

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Not sure why this seems to be an issue? If he tries to do something stupid then he will die - Not sure why the GM should be in any way forgiving? Real life does not talk to us about how reckless our decision is or does not throw us a helping hand. If you attack 20 Somali pirates with a stick you will be on the next live news presented as a hostage or bargaining chip. Which could be a fun adventure in itself. 

Edited by Artuard

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He entered the ship, tried to be sneaky... the pirates found him out.

Second Big Bad (Pirate Captain stats) Nikto went 1 on 1 with him with a Vibrosword... until PC broke said sword after the first hit.

 

Bad guy pulled a pistol, blasted him, PC lopped off the guys hands and incapacitated him (He shall be back, mechanical hands et all).

 

He then retreated as the rest of the pirates advanced on the party.

 

Snuck about inside the ship looking for the Captain (Who the group knew was not on the ship).

 

When the group started getting beaten up, he was persuaded to regroup and they fled.

 

 

 

Conversation with the player afterwards was that he would have preferred if id told him NOT to take the course of action if it was going to give me GM headaches. (While I was labouring under the idea that i wanted to give him the option of trying it, without flat out saying "Nope").

 

Crits abound with long range firefights outside, he regrouped, chopped up a few more pirates and the group fled with cargo on a skiff.

 

Next week, they will find their ship has a few guys at it that they need to get past before blasting off.. where they will get chased off by a couple of Cloakshapes and either a Skipray or the Gozanti of the pirates.

 

Ill probably start with the Cloakshapes and Skipray, and if they make short work of either, have the Gozanti arrive... as soon as they clear the asteroid field, they will jump away to their rendezvous with the (unknown to them) Rebel transport to return the cargo.

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He entered the ship, tried to be sneaky... the pirates found him out.

Second Big Bad (Pirate Captain stats) Nikto went 1 on 1 with him with a Vibrosword... until PC broke said sword after the first hit.

 

Bad guy pulled a pistol, blasted him, PC lopped off the guys hands and incapacitated him (He shall be back, mechanical hands et all).

 

He then retreated as the rest of the pirates advanced on the party.

 

Snuck about inside the ship looking for the Captain (Who the group knew was not on the ship).

 

When the group started getting beaten up, he was persuaded to regroup and they fled.

 

 

 

Conversation with the player afterwards was that he would have preferred if id told him NOT to take the course of action if it was going to give me GM headaches. (While I was labouring under the idea that i wanted to give him the option of trying it, without flat out saying "Nope").

 

Crits abound with long range firefights outside, he regrouped, chopped up a few more pirates and the group fled with cargo on a skiff.

 

Next week, they will find their ship has a few guys at it that they need to get past before blasting off.. where they will get chased off by a couple of Cloakshapes and either a Skipray or the Gozanti of the pirates.

 

Ill probably start with the Cloakshapes and Skipray, and if they make short work of either, have the Gozanti arrive... as soon as they clear the asteroid field, they will jump away to their rendezvous with the (unknown to them) Rebel transport to return the cargo.

 

 

I've never much been a fan of dropping nastier enemies on the players if they do well.

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It wasnt a case of dropping a nasty enemy on him.

 

It was an attempt to allow him to try his plan, while putting something seinsible in his path to prevent him doing something that would broken me as a GM and throw the entire narrative off into the gutter where I couldnt cope with it, thus... breaking the game for everyone.

 

I am not capable to dealing with things that come from a total left field... if i was, i would be a far better GM. But im not.

 

He wanted to subdue the entire pirate band, force them to fly him to the authories to turn them in, and claim any rewards, while the rest of the party carried on with the mission, potentially leaving the party to "drop him entirely" from any payment, PERMANENTLY splitting the group.... or giving them a MASSIVE cash payout.

 

Both things I couldnt deal with as a GM. So i tried to create a situation where the player felt he was able to try his plan, but found it unattainable, rather than saying "Nope Player.. you cant do that". (Which has led to a huge argument in the past, an entire campaign ending).

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