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Ehrran

What Happened, and how to pause a campaign?

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After the last session, I left feeling weird. Despite the fact that everyone had a good time.

The Chiss BH PC had bribed two officers into helping him, then ran onto the colony ship's bridge to assume command, as mentioned in my last post. I let the rest of the table play the bridge crew, because they had stated their characters were all asleep when the Chiss did this. Two picked the bribed officers, one picked a loyal officer, I played the remaining NPC's. The Captain summoned the Marshal PC onto the bridge, who was drinking himself to sleep earlier. The Marshal immediately sided with the Chiss, forcing a firefight on the bridge, all weapons on stun. The NPC loyalists lost. The Chiss then shot the Marshal PC(stun) and killed the two that he bribed earlier. Ship security came, and since the Chiss had hacked the ship's logs and planted a fake promotion for himself earlier(Triumph with 3 Successes), they listened to him. The PC Marshal and the bridge crew were taken to the brig.

The players were confused by this, assuming the Chiss had gotten them a new ship to sell. But I decided to let it play out, as some of you had advised earlier.

While the security team was taking the bridge crew to their cells, the Chiss decided to wake up the PC's. He called up the Twi'lek Smuggler and Togruta Jedi, and told them." Okay, we're all done here. You launch, the BH and I will catch up." They take off immediately.

He goes back to the ship belonging to the PC Force-Sensitive Twi'lek BH, and wakes her up. They go back to the brig, and question the human PC Marshal. After questioning, they take him to the second player ship. After the Marshal is sleeping  in a room, the Chiss draws his guns, says," This is for your own good!" and shot her. Pierce 5, 14 base stun damage, and straps her in the co-pilot's seat with binders. Then he gets explosives ( he said his old astromech droid had gifted his new Chiss with all the cash/crafted weapons/crafted gear the droid had, but I didn't really think about what that could mean) and plants them in the mess hall.

He calls the last of the crew(50) to the mess hall to explain what happened on the bridge. When they are all in the room, he detonated the explosives, then walked in, shooting any survivors. The Chiss heads to the cryosleep deck, and wakes up his third PC. (My rule is you try to have a new character ready to go, just in case your dice are mad at you that session..) He gives him instructions to take the colony ship to where BBX( his first character) is awaiting his new slaves. Finally, he goes to speak to the command staff in the brig. The Chiss says to the captain, "You hear of a droid called BBX? Well, I work for him!" Then he shoots them. He goes back to the PC ship, and launches, as the Twi'lek BH wakes up, still cuffed.

 Twi'lek; "What did you do?"

Chiss: "Trust me, you don't need to know."

Session ended there. Cue music.

Since 50 people died, his character waking up cuffed in a seat,and because of the conversations the 2 PC's had, I decided to award 25 Conflict to the Twi'lek immediately, and another 25 if the PC ever puts two and two together, due to one emotion. Guilt/Remorse. It's an emotion not covered specifically in FaD CRB, iirc. But I thought that betrayal, and grief over the death of those she had just fought for a day earlier, could lead to the dark side. The Twi'lek  BH was one point away from making Paragon.

The character knew the Chiss was up to something, but failed to spot it in time. I ruled it fell under Knowing Inaction, 1 point per person killed by the Chiss. The books don't cover a situation like this, so I thought this was the simplest answer. And I knew fairly quick that the Chiss' player was trying to twist the rules a bit. His habit of not crafting his old PC's gear in front of me kinda tipped me off.

As we packed up for the evening, the (IIRC) Marshal's player said," Hey, next game, let's try to set up a base or something, K?" 🙄 

Ok, here's my question. One of the players wants to switch to his running a fantasy setting pretty soon, but wants me to continue running my SW arc in the future. Do I stop  the game right here, or hit the pause button on a cliffhanger? If the second, what kind? Recap;

The Zann Consortium wants them, 50,000 CR each, dead only.

Saleucami government; 25,000 CR each, dead or alive.

The Empire: 30,000 CR each , dead or alive, BBX 50,000 CR, brain intact, 60,000 CR for the Togruta, alive only (they know there is at least one Force-user, due to piles of evidence left behind at every battle)

Thanks!

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So is your Chiss player the same person who was playing the murder droid (I’ve read your other posts about this game)?

If so then it sounds to me like he’s just continued where he left off with the droid, so whilst he’s a “new” character technically he’s pretty much the same. It also sounds like he’s going out of his way to go against (break) any story that you’ve tried to inject into your campaign.

For me that seems kinda unfair on his part, as a long term GM I know the level of work that goes into running a campaign whether you’re running a sandbox style game or one that’s more structured. It’s your game though & if you’re ok with it then it’s obviously fine.

Personally I’d have words with the player about what u expect at your table. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for players going off on tangents & I enjoy it when throw a curveball at me, but I like them to be involved in the overarching story that I lay out for them! How that story ends up is obviously up to their actions & choices in the game.

As for moving forward, with all that heat after them they’re pretty much going to be fighting for their lives in every spaceport they visit... and the Bounty Hunters after them should be hardcore, like seriously hardcore! You’re also forgetting the Inquisitors coming after the force users 😆 

 

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Never award conflict to a person for something done by another person without their knowledge.  If the Twi'lek knew beforehand that this is what the Chiss was going to do and did nothing to stop him, then conflict would be warranted.  Even after the fact, there's not much they can do it about it other than but a blaster hole through the Chiss' head or turn him over to the authorities.

 

As to your question, yes just put the game on pause until you are ready to come back to it from the Fantasy game.  We do this regularly in our group.  We have several GMs and tend to run games in 6 week sessions so they are always getting paused to swap to another game and just continue on later when it comes back up on the schedule.

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21 hours ago, Ehrran said:

After the last session, I left feeling weird. Despite the fact that everyone had a good time.

The Chiss BH PC had bribed two officers into helping him, then ran onto the colony ship's bridge to assume command, as mentioned in my last post. I let the rest of the table play the bridge crew, because they had stated their characters were all asleep when the Chiss did this. Two picked the bribed officers, one picked a loyal officer, I played the remaining NPC's. The Captain summoned the Marshal PC onto the bridge, who was drinking himself to sleep earlier. The Marshal immediately sided with the Chiss, forcing a firefight on the bridge, all weapons on stun. The NPC loyalists lost. The Chiss then shot the Marshal PC(stun) and killed the two that he bribed earlier. Ship security came, and since the Chiss had hacked the ship's logs and planted a fake promotion for himself earlier(Triumph with 3 Successes), they listened to him. The PC Marshal and the bridge crew were taken to the brig.

The players were confused by this, assuming the Chiss had gotten them a new ship to sell. But I decided to let it play out, as some of you had advised earlier.

While the security team was taking the bridge crew to their cells, the Chiss decided to wake up the PC's. He called up the Twi'lek Smuggler and Togruta Jedi, and told them." Okay, we're all done here. You launch, the BH and I will catch up." They take off immediately.

He goes back to the ship belonging to the PC Force-Sensitive Twi'lek BH, and wakes her up. They go back to the brig, and question the human PC Marshal. After questioning, they take him to the second player ship. After the Marshal is sleeping  in a room, the Chiss draws his guns, says," This is for your own good!" and shot her. Pierce 5, 14 base stun damage, and straps her in the co-pilot's seat with binders. Then he gets explosives ( he said his old astromech droid had gifted his new Chiss with all the cash/crafted weapons/crafted gear the droid had, but I didn't really think about what that could mean) and plants them in the mess hall.

He calls the last of the crew(50) to the mess hall to explain what happened on the bridge. When they are all in the room, he detonated the explosives, then walked in, shooting any survivors. The Chiss heads to the cryosleep deck, and wakes up his third PC. (My rule is you try to have a new character ready to go, just in case your dice are mad at you that session..) He gives him instructions to take the colony ship to where BBX( his first character) is awaiting his new slaves. Finally, he goes to speak to the command staff in the brig. The Chiss says to the captain, "You hear of a droid called BBX? Well, I work for him!" Then he shoots them. He goes back to the PC ship, and launches, as the Twi'lek BH wakes up, still cuffed.

 Twi'lek; "What did you do?"

Chiss: "Trust me, you don't need to know."

Session ended there. Cue music.

Since 50 people died, his character waking up cuffed in a seat,and because of the conversations the 2 PC's had, I decided to award 25 Conflict to the Twi'lek immediately, and another 25 if the PC ever puts two and two together, due to one emotion. Guilt/Remorse. It's an emotion not covered specifically in FaD CRB, iirc. But I thought that betrayal, and grief over the death of those she had just fought for a day earlier, could lead to the dark side. The Twi'lek  BH was one point away from making Paragon.

The character knew the Chiss was up to something, but failed to spot it in time. I ruled it fell under Knowing Inaction, 1 point per person killed by the Chiss. The books don't cover a situation like this, so I thought this was the simplest answer. And I knew fairly quick that the Chiss' player was trying to twist the rules a bit. His habit of not crafting his old PC's gear in front of me kinda tipped me off.

As we packed up for the evening, the (IIRC) Marshal's player said," Hey, next game, let's try to set up a base or something, K?" 🙄 

Ok, here's my question. One of the players wants to switch to his running a fantasy setting pretty soon, but wants me to continue running my SW arc in the future. Do I stop  the game right here, or hit the pause button on a cliffhanger? If the second, what kind? Recap;

The Zann Consortium wants them, 50,000 CR each, dead only.

Saleucami government; 25,000 CR each, dead or alive.

The Empire: 30,000 CR each , dead or alive, BBX 50,000 CR, brain intact, 60,000 CR for the Togruta, alive only (they know there is at least one Force-user, due to piles of evidence left behind at every battle)

Thanks!

 

5 hours ago, Varlie said:

Never award conflict to a person for something done by another person without their knowledge.  If the Twi'lek knew beforehand that this is what the Chiss was going to do and did nothing to stop him, then conflict would be warranted.  Even after the fact, there's not much they can do it about it other than but a blaster hole through the Chiss' head or turn him over to the authorities.

 

As to your question, yes just put the game on pause until you are ready to come back to it from the Fantasy game.  We do this regularly in our group.  We have several GMs and tend to run games in 6 week sessions so they are always getting paused to swap to another game and just continue on later when it comes back up on the schedule.

I agree with @Varlie. If the Twi'Lek didn't know that the Chiss had done until after the fact, she shouldn't get any Conflict for "Knowing Inaction". Even if she did know, it would still only be One Conflict total. This is because, no matter how many people died, it was still a single action. 

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Wow... just wow. Way worse than I could have ever imagined it would turn out.

I had a funny thought though - maybe this works as your cliffhanger: A plucky band of Rebels shows up to save the day. Depending on how you want to scale it you could go anywhere from just a few heroes to an entire strike team, maybe even a Nebulon-B or Mon Cal cruiser. Or, to really ramp it up... Rogue Squadron shows up, with Luke leading the charge.

--Lagspike

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On 4/10/2019 at 11:42 PM, Archlyte said:

Are the other players having fun in the games with this guy? Cause to me it sounds like he is a predator who only has fun if others don't. 

They --seem-- to be enjoying themselves when he's around, although one player has come to my home twice this week to discuss his concerns about him. Primarily about how easily he (the Chiss) can swat his character aside. (He's playing the Togruta Jedi. He so❤️ loves❤️ the armor{Soak around 7, IIRC} the Chiss' player crafted for him when he was playing the droid. He does NOT love the fact that the Chiss has twin blasters made by the droid(Pierce 5, damage 7 each, IIRC) that can take him down in one or two shots.)  He (in a roundabout way) asked me if I would bring back my GMPC HG with 5 ranks in Gunnery to help if things came to a PC vs. PC battle.

I said no. I created that GMPC so I could understand how the system worked better, and as the occasional plot driver, NOT as the player's babysitter. Once I had the basics down, I decided to let the HG fade back so the PC's could shine.
 

On 4/10/2019 at 11:51 AM, AceSolo5 said:

So is your Chiss player the same person who was playing the murder droid (I’ve read your other posts about this game)?

Yes.

If it comes to a fight between PC's, in this case only, go for it. The Droid/Chiss' player is why the Group Obligation stays around the 80+ range. I'd say last session pushed it over 100, but I haven't been tracking it lately. I need to remember to do that each session. Every major disaster (and new enemy) was caused by his actions. I like a few twists too, but not at the cost of the players having a good time.

And it makes perfect story arc sense to me if the rest of the party turns him in, or kills him, for his actions on the colony ship.

On 4/10/2019 at 11:51 AM, AceSolo5 said:

If so then it sounds to me like he’s just continued where he left off with the droid, so whilst he’s a “new” character technically he’s pretty much the same. It also sounds like he’s going out of his way to go against (break) any story that you’ve tried to inject into your campaign. 

For me that seems kinda unfair on his part, as a long term GM I know the level of work that goes into running a campaign whether you’re running a sandbox style game or one that’s more structured.

THIS.^

This is my first try at a true sandbox style of play. I've tried to do it in D&D (1st ed. through 5th) and Shadowrun, and everyone said it went well, but eventually I put the PC's on the railroad at some point.

With this system, I've been letting them choose their own fate. I make up articles from "Imperial News Reports", an underground news group, and a pay BH-only service, that I print up and hand out for the group to read. Typically 6-10 headlines, at two to four sentences each, like you'd see in any classified ad. They pick something(they're all numbered) that looks interesting, and I run it from there. You should hear the debates. "I like # 6!" "Naah, # 2 is easy money!" "#7 needs WHAT delivered to Kessel?" If you snag this idea, always throw in at least 1 - 2 red herrings, so they see you can't believe everything you read...😈

I mentioned his droid handed over all his gear and money to the Chiss, right? I should have stopped that, thinking back. 

And the Colony Ship was a "gift" to the players for some outstanding RP a session or two earlier. As I said earlier, all but the Chiss wanted a place to call home. They had stolen a second ship and a Y-wing, the new Twi'lek Force-sensitive BH had her own freighter, while searching for their original YT-2400 ship. The colonists were going to do all the heavy lifting while the PC's would provide security and exploration of the new world.

On 4/11/2019 at 2:42 PM, Archlyte said:

Also, is the player who wants to play his game instead of your game the one who plays the Chiss? 

No.

The player bought a system he wants to try, (not sure what it is, just it's fantasy-based)and he's been writing a story for awhile. And if he GM's as good as he plays, I will definitely make a character.

On 4/10/2019 at 7:47 PM, Lagspike said:

Wow... just wow. Way worse than I could have ever imagined it would turn out.

I had a funny thought though - maybe this works as your cliffhanger: A plucky band of Rebels shows up to save the day. Depending on how you want to scale it you could go anywhere from just a few heroes to an entire strike team, maybe even a Nebulon-B or Mon Cal cruiser. Or, to really ramp it up... Rogue Squadron shows up, with Luke leading the charge.

--Lagspike

I like it, but we're 1 year from Rogue One/ANH, and I'm waiting for Disney Plus so I can watch Rebels (haven't seen it). Luke can't show up. Now Saw Guerrea's Partisans, or Bail and Leia Organa, however.... (Ever since I saw TCW, I liked the way they did Bail.)

Opinion: should a major SW figure show up as a part of the Cliffhanger? (With my table, I'd make sure their Plot Armor +5 was on tight.....🤣)

 

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2 hours ago, Ehrran said:

They --seem-- to be enjoying themselves when he's around, although one player has come to my home twice this week to discuss his concerns about him. Primarily about how easily he (the Chiss) can swat his character aside. (He's playing the Togruta Jedi. He so❤️ loves❤️ the armor{Soak around 7, IIRC} the Chiss' player crafted for him when he was playing the droid. He does NOT love the fact that the Chiss has twin blasters made by the droid(Pierce 5, damage 7 each, IIRC) that can take him down in one or two shots.)  He (in a roundabout way) asked me if I would bring back my GMPC HG with 5 ranks in Gunnery to help if things came to a PC vs. PC battle.

I don't know your table, but this seems like trouble brewing to me. Maybe they could have the wargame battle and be totally ok, but it kind of sounds like one player has supplanted you as the person playing the main villain in the game. The Chiss player is apparently an antagonist the party must deal with. 

As a player or a GM I prefer to have the antagonists be NPCs so that the party can have the experience of working together against a dangerous world. There are other styles of play of course, but I find that this sort of thing tends to disintegrate PC groups. 

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The PM I sent was full of organic in-game funsies. I did not want to post it here, as I said PC spys.... But, Archlyte, I think you might(are on the) be one the same track as I was after reading through all the previous posts and what I sent is an example of what could follow the previous epics in a great mud in your eye-eye opener campaign arch.

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1 hour ago, doktor grym said:

The PM I sent was full of organic in-game funsies. I did not want to post it here, as I said PC spys....

Yes. Thank you, I plan on using the info you sent me. it's going to come in very handy. 😈

 

17 hours ago, Archlyte said:

As a player or a GM I prefer to have the antagonists be NPCs so that the party can have the experience of working together against a dangerous world. There are other styles of play of course, but I find that this sort of thing tends to disintegrate PC groups.

EXACTLY THIS^.

It's happened to me at least three times, IIRC. Twice as a player, once as a GM. Each event shut down the game for good that night.

What's funny is, I was speaking to the Togruta Jedi's (TJ) player about this. I asked him," How many years have you known him?"

TJ: "Uh...…."

Me. "How long?"

TJ: "I just picked him out of a crowd and told him to come up and play. Never saw him before that day."

Me:"...…….."

I had told him at Session Zero I prefer people you've known for a while, to prevent things like this, and to prevent boredom. I've lost count of the total strangers some bonehead brought to my table whose sole purpose of playing was to cause as much headache as possible. 

TJ's player is a good guy,  but he assumes nearly everything with a pulse is proof of sainthood. He's done that from day one, and he's not going to change anytime soon.

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, Ehrran said:

Yes. Thank you, I plan on using the info you sent me. it's going to come in very handy. 😈

 

EXACTLY THIS^.

It's happened to me at least three times, IIRC. Twice as a player, once as a GM. Each event shut down the game for good that night.

What's funny is, I was speaking to the Togruta Jedi's (TJ) player about this. I asked him," How many years have you known him?"

TJ: "Uh...…."

Me. "How long?"

TJ: "I just picked him out of a crowd and told him to come up and play. Never saw him before that day."

Me:"...…….."

I had told him at Session Zero I prefer people you've known for a while, to prevent things like this, and to prevent boredom. I've lost count of the total strangers some bonehead brought to my table whose sole purpose of playing was to cause as much headache as possible. 

TJ's player is a good guy,  but he assumes nearly everything with a pulse is proof of sainthood. He's done that from day one, and he's not going to change anytime soon.

LOL ok I see now. Yeah this is something I have had experience with and I sympathize. In thinking about the games I have played in my life the best were always games in which we were all friends. I play more with community people in recent years so I always do Session 0 and I give the players a set of rules for my table. These are particular to me and my games, but maybe they will have something you can use. 

#1: The Real-Life Relationships are more important than the game. The game should never be set above the way you regard your fellow players, and the game should absolutely never be weaponized as a way to strike out at your fellow players or GM.

#2: There is only one Game Master/Dungeon Master in the game. If you have decided to play, you have entered into a contract that you will be a player and accept the limitations and powers of that role for the duration of the sessions and campaign. The GM is the boss.

#3: Don't engage in uninteresting Actions. When deciding what to do, remember that when you are solo, you carry the entertainment of the whole table on your shoulders. You should not engage in activities that are solely entertaining to you, and of interest only to you. 

#4: No Forecasting or GM Suggestion. The players domain is Action and Planning, based on actual description from the GM, and not made up of Player Assumptions. Narrative Control is almost always the strict domain of the GM. The reason for this is that a narrative is a series of actions resolved by design, and players should be reacting to the characters’ lives, not planning and directing them like a mini-GM. Do not suggest or plan anything that attempts to override the real description of the GM in a preemptory manner. This includes things like starting a scene for a desired outcome and getting pissy when it happens spontaneously and differently from the player's design. The proper form for such queries is a question.

Example: Player-"The Death Star janitorial computers should have a terminal I will use to take control of all of the droids on the station."

#5: The PC Group/Game as a Whole rates higher than your character. The difference between the two need not be great, but the context as viewed by an imaginary "audience" should always be a consideration of the objective nature of your character. This does not mean you can't like your character more than the group, it simply means you will not act in such a way as to sabotage, neglect, dominate, or otherwise raise your character above the group/game in decision making. If you must do something that violates this rule the GM and other players must be in on it and approve. If your character does betray the group then the players and GM must decide how to resolve the situation OOC, and the character may be removed from play if it is decided that this is the only realistic way to solve the issue. Because players do not control narratives, it is not up to the player if a redemption arc will happen or not, as that requires a design.

#6: No Backgrounds or Concepts that inhibit the actual game/story. This means you must not make a character that has a pre-written story that interferes or overrides the actual game as it plays out. Example: the Bounty Hunter who is only-happy-when-Bounty-Hunting and who will be pouting if not hunting marks every session. This also means don't make a character that will not be able to join the adventure, or that is going to attempt to pull the group out of stories at every turn. This also means not making a character that is immune to all emotional situations and has no ties to anyone unless the group is willing to endure the arc of the character growing toward some emotional concessions.

#7: Leave Narrative Summary be. If the GM tells you something happens in narrative summary off-screen instead of in an immediate scene, you must accept that your proposed actions were deemed to be irrelevant, inane, or otherwise impeding the narrative and pacing the GM is trying to achieve. This may seem harsh but remember that the GM is trying to keep a narrative flowing and sometimes these digressions and sidetracks can wholly prevent the game from going anywhere. It is the GM's job to not abuse this rule and to try and allow the players some side activities, but the game flow not be overly diverted into solo project scenes.

Edited by Archlyte

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Posted (edited)

Just eject that player. At this point, he is a murder cartel of just one. Honestly, I probably would've blown a casket myself by now, I absolutely cannot stand characters who actively disrupt the ongoing narrative for his own personal gratification. I mean, that guy's been doing stupid stuff for months at this point, changing his character isn't going to change him because his new character will just work for that supreme murder hobo character. Just eject that player out and you will have erased most of the problems you have suffered these last couple of months at least.

Just figured it was best telling you straight, as I have never heard of such a self indulgent player in my life. Whoever is playing these murder hobo characters doesn't give a toss about everyone having fun, he's a self pleasuring freak who frankly isn't having a good time unless the body count is hitting the triple digits. Quite frankly, he is an abomination to the roleplaying community and the quicker you can cut that cancer out from your table, the happier I think you will feel about running sessions in the long run.

God, I feel so angry having read that, and I've seen some rubbish in my years. XD

Edited by LordBritish

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Lord British of Ultima! I miss my old 1982 PC with ultima I-III and then the next 3. Sad Panda ;-/

 

I would say eject the player, but.... Doing the murderhobo BS is lame and childish obviously, the player may have some deep seated social or mental health need to cause this chaos and mayhem and they should seek professional help. I wouldn't kick him out till everyone had an intervention with the person and ask when are you going to be done with murderhobo? Why are you doing murderhobo? Will you run so we can play murderhobo? Do you feel you need to find another group who likes murderhobo (their favored play style) or are you going to CHANGE? Don't ask him to leave without a group intervention, perhaps he will leave on his own? If this player balks at the intervention and can't handle it, gets angry, upset, etc. You really know he is a bad seed socially. Us long time gamer had all had these types, in my experience it works about 50% of the time. Try to use I statements and we statements.

I (we) feel this murderhobo activity is really causing the other players issues because we don't know when you'll be done? Give reasons to support this using this and the following questions examples using the I or we. Never start anything with you. Try to leave the attack or negative stuff for the player and don't take what they say personally, you're here trying to support them.  You could use for example; I get overwhelmed by what your doing sometimes as it break down the gaming experience the rest of the table is having. We are concerned that something is going on in your life and this play style is a call for help? <-supportive, caring, empathy. 

I(we) don't know why you are doing this murderhobo play style?

I(we) wonder if you ran the game you would let us have a murderhobo of a good time, taking advantage of the plot, game system, etc for our maximum mayhem time experiences?

I(we) wonder sometimes if you might be better served by a group who has a play style and enjoyment similar to yours?

Just as on  the other side, our group had to have interventions many times, example; when do to economy issues years back one of our fellow players stopped showing up because he was in foreclosure on his home. He was really depressed, felt ashamed etc. He had major anxiety and was just having a real difficult time dealing with life. We forced our way back into his life by going to his house, the one he was going to loose and eventually did, as often as we could. We picked him up, we played at his house. We, as his fellow players and friends had an intervention and sat down to deal with what he was really having a difficult time with. We made sure he wasn't alone. He felt supported, had a place to feel safe to talk to his peers and be supported by his friends in the ways we could.

This player could have outside social or personality issue going on. Be a friend first, find out, gaming is always second to real life. It will force them to play their cards face up. Ask them do you really enjoy making everyone else's play experience difficult? Ask him to put his feet into the every other player at the tables shoes, the GM included for every gaming group game he has gamed with. Starting with the current game, these two Star Wars PC are a couple of douches or is the player?, going backwards what were his last characters like in the previous RPG played... If he says "I'm only good playing these kind of characters, or they are the only kind I like to play" <-there is your answer. 

 

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In interacting with community players in recent years, versus organic groups for most of my gaming career, I have noticed that there are some disturbing behaviors that pass as pretty normal in many pubby groups. Most notably stuff that is basically just non-consensual PvP for no purpose other than to win at the expense of others and to get the ego stroke. You have to really invest in your people when you game, and that means you can't let one of them ruin it for the others. 

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Archlyte said it "You have to really invest in your people when you game, and that means you can't let one of them ruin it for the others." 

I ran RPGA events at cons for 15+ off and on years 1st, 2nd, 3.x and 4th edt DND and there is always the potential to pick up a loose canon, attention hog, rules lawyer, mayhem player or just someone who has had a bad day. However, having a bad day is a lot different than the other reasons there, because when a player consistently derails a game, group, or as Archlyte said "ruin(s) it for the others" its time for an intervention, setting of boundaries and the follow through of either; a player changing how they operate at the table or the boundaries' punitive action being enforced, beit the removal of them from the group at the extreme, to advising them not to attend a few sessions. This is so they can determine if the group really fits their needs and for the group to determine if that player is really worth "THEIR" time. It is very important to stick by the aforementioned punitive action or else the discipline is a false pretense and your position is weakened as a group of adults. The active non-disciplined players on both sides of the table should recognize whether they are having a better social experience, a better gaming experience, a more productive session and if they are just having more fun and enjoyment overall. And everyone should weigh in, none of this i'll pass BS or whatever you figure out, gaming is a social activity and only as a group of individuals who all voice their thoughts as peers can a true scale be calibrated. 

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, doktor grym said:

Lord British of Ultima! I miss my old 1982 PC with ultima I-III and then the next 3. Sad Panda ;-/

 

I would say eject the player, but.... Doing the murderhobo BS is lame and childish obviously, the player may have some deep seated social or mental health need to cause this chaos and mayhem and they should seek professional help. I wouldn't kick him out till everyone had an intervention with the person and ask when are you going to be done with murderhobo? Why are you doing murderhobo? Will you run so we can play murderhobo? Do you feel you need to find another group who likes murderhobo (their favored play style) or are you going to CHANGE? Don't ask him to leave without a group intervention, perhaps he will leave on his own? If this player balks at the intervention and can't handle it, gets angry, upset, etc. You really know he is a bad seed socially. Us long time gamer had all had these types, in my experience it works about 50% of the time. Try to use I statements and we statements.

I (we) feel this murderhobo activity is really causing the other players issues because we don't know when you'll be done? Give reasons to support this using this and the following questions examples using the I or we. Never start anything with you. Try to leave the attack or negative stuff for the player and don't take what they say personally, you're here trying to support them.  You could use for example; I get overwhelmed by what your doing sometimes as it break down the gaming experience the rest of the table is having. We are concerned that something is going on in your life and this play style is a call for help? <-supportive, caring, empathy. 

I(we) don't know why you are doing this murderhobo play style?

I(we) wonder if you ran the game you would let us have a murderhobo of a good time, taking advantage of the plot, game system, etc for our maximum mayhem time experiences?

I(we) wonder sometimes if you might be better served by a group who has a play style and enjoyment similar to yours?

Just as on  the other side, our group had to have interventions many times, example; when do to economy issues years back one of our fellow players stopped showing up because he was in foreclosure on his home. He was really depressed, felt ashamed etc. He had major anxiety and was just having a real difficult time dealing with life. We forced our way back into his life by going to his house, the one he was going to loose and eventually did, as often as we could. We picked him up, we played at his house. We, as his fellow players and friends had an intervention and sat down to deal with what he was really having a difficult time with. We made sure he wasn't alone. He felt supported, had a place to feel safe to talk to his peers and be supported by his friends in the ways we could.

This player could have outside social or personality issue going on. Be a friend first, find out, gaming is always second to real life. It will force them to play their cards face up. Ask them do you really enjoy making everyone else's play experience difficult? Ask him to put his feet into the every other player at the tables shoes, the GM included for every gaming group game he has gamed with. Starting with the current game, these two Star Wars PC are a couple of douches or is the player?, going backwards what were his last characters like in the previous RPG played... If he says "I'm only good playing these kind of characters, or they are the only kind I like to play" <-there is your answer. 

 

Heheh. Funnily enough, I never played that game. 

That is a good point though. It is good to talk very directly to the player about "why" they are doing this. I probably would have done that at the time when he thought it was OK to turn an entire area to glass with an improvised explosive, just cause. Or that time he started building a droid army in the engine room and had bombs to blow up the captain if he ever tried to remove him, just cause. Or the time he decided to take over the ship, just 'cause. Or that time he actually murdered the entire crew of the ship, just 'cause. If a player is regularly the instigator of escalation of events just because, that is a problem that needs to be spoken about because it is very hard to engineer an engaging environment with an character that actively trying to destroy the universe he is in, all the time.  "Oh, I work for this droid.", as a causal star wars fan I recognise how unbelievably uneducated. that statement is within this universe. Thus it really doesn't matter how many characters you give this character, they will ultimately make the same one every time. This is a personal problem that should be resolved away from the table with a discussion and a plan of action. No half measures, like letting it fester across several sessions will inevitably lead to something having to give, the GM or your his fellow players.

To quote personal experience, I am not a GM but I host the venue for the game that I am part of. The only time that I have ever had to evoke host privileges was when one player really started acting up socially around the table, where he basically accused one person of being a power gamer who wanted to control the group and tried to make a big confrontation about it in the social chat. After about 15 minutes of this tirade several of us had asked him to politely calm down only to be rebutted with personal attacks, I then interjected as the host and said "If you continue to make personal attacks on people, I am going to prevent you from taking part in further sessions as the host. This is your last warning.", he started to make personal attacks on me so I excluded him, with the stipulation that he wouldn't be allowed back around to the table until he had apologised properly like an adult that he was. After all, he had significantly soured the tone of our sessions.

Fast forward 11 months later he got in contact with us and only apologised for the roleplaying mishaps he had, thinking this was the first step we considered having him back, we just had to resolve the current plot arc as it made no sense to have another character join at this particular juncture (we were in the middle of the job and we had trepidations about adding anything that further complicated it.). However, upon further talks he made references to the past events that got him removed and he claimed it to be a joke. After the two weeks were up it was really the same rubbish at a different time of year so we told him that we were upholding our current status quo. His response was two words. Very mature. But because we had shifted from our status quo without much consideration, and we only considered it because he had initially called in the middle of the session and said he was 5 minutes away, it caused a lot of strain on the group and some wanted to leave rather then endure his inclusion again. I wished I had been more firm and doubled down on my initial statement within the initial time period. "The problem was never your roleplaying, but rather the way you treated people around the table, either correct it or you will be not welcome at my house."

Of course, the important thing to do is to give them opportunity to correct their mistakes as it might be just a honest misunderstanding and letting them know that it's causing an serious issue, can solve many issues. Just ultimately the role of the GM is to also to create a fun environment for himself and others. 

Edited by LordBritish

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I have had the same experience as LordBritish, but the player in question being a ****** was the GM's brother. He was a good role-player, but he was just an a55 socially to certain people in the group including me and two others who were newer to RPGs, this was 1985-1987 playing AD&D 1st. I really got sick of it, and i was only 16 when i started playing with this group, he was in his mid to late 20's. I had gamed since I was 10, getting the D&D basic set for my 10th birthday, and eventually switching to AD&D. So, eventually I was asked to leave when I brought up how he was treating the two newer players and myself, me leaving wasn't a big deal as I was leaving to go into the Air Force in a matter of months. The issue was the two brother rented an apartment together, so you can run into the same situation as LordBritish, but in slightly different  form, when the host is forced to side with the person being an issue or in the case of the host being the problem, and you don't have a reasonable and comfortable place to play. I've have seen groups and the time they have vested in their games just disintegrate into a bad experience.

Years later I ran into the two players much changed from when I stood up for at the time, a 20 yearold somewhat shy woman who was soft-spoken and the man who was almost as shy, but who eventually married her, the fellow newb player at a local supermarket with their 5 and 3 year old. That group had ran together for about 9 years. Eventually, many years down the road the brother was asked to leave the game when it relocated to another living space. They thanked me for my sacrifice of standing up to him, and mind you i was a 5' 6" 130# hardcore punk 17 year-old kid about to go into the Air Force, he was a 6' 1" tall built former Army Ranger. I guess my dad being a former Marine drill Sargent gave me the force of will to deal with his attitude, but it got me some trouble in the Air Force. I don't think he liked that I was going in the Air Force, but they offered the best options for me. They also mentioned he did apologize to them a few sessions later, for his rudeness. He was always getting frustrated about their indecisiveness and the naivety of the play experience as a few times it caused the party to have some near epic fails, but that is role-playing right, and you have to start someplace. 

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Thanks, everyone, for the advice. I picked up my copy of Allies and Adversaries Thursday, so that will make for good reading before the next session. Now, if only the other book I ordered would get "off the boat"... Probably using hamsters for the engine system, to save money.

Well, it seems like there's going to be a happy ending to this little story, after all. As soon as the Chiss' player(CP)  walked in, the player of the Togruta Jedi (TJ) asked him about his murderhobo antics before I could. I'm going to assume he (TJ) is reading these posts, because more than once, he's said a phrase that was written here. Coincidence? Possibly, but....

Basically, CP has a really heavy school load, and my table is a good place to blow off some steam. He wanted to see how powerful he could make the droid. All he used was the EotE CRB and Special Modifications to do it. Nothing else.(Another rule of mine, stated at Session Zero: Only official FFG physical books/DL's can be used to make characters.) And he did state that he was getting bored with the Chiss character because it, like the droid, was way OP, in his opinion. If the Chiss dies, he would replace it with something a little less powerful. He also said that the rules in Special Modifications are broken, and his two characters prove it.

I have to agree, although I have yet to make a PC/NPC using those rules. This is why I prefer to play a new system before I GM it. So I know what books/ rules to add or toss aside.

Although the conversation lasted maybe 5-10 minutes, it helped. He's still welcome at the table. IMHO, being a GM should count as credit hours towards a psychology degree. Jus' sayin'.

But,I may have to do a minor re-write of my story (ex., up the soak of the minion NPC's by one or two points, or increase rival/nemesis count) to account for the level of PC abilities.

The last session turned out great. They went to Columex to find leads on their YT-2400, and restock their gear. The Force-sensitive BH ran into a resistance cell that sent them back to the same colony ship they just left, to recover 4 unassembled X-wings in crates. Meanwhile, the human Marshal sobered up, got a case of the guilts, and decided to rescue the 400 colonists still frozen in cryosleep. They found the colony ship, drifting through an asteroid field, headed for an unstable orbit with a gas giant. A scan showed something unknown had taken over decks 2 - 6. The Marshal took the Y-wing and docked with an external airlock on deck 7. His job was to manually release the internal clamps holding the three Sil 5 pods containing the colonists and their stuff. The rest of the PC's were in their freighters. They had to shoot the external clamps, making Daunting Pilot checks to avoid the asteroid swarm they were flying through. Meanwhile, the creature that had taken over the colony ship was flinging parts of itself at the PC's freighters. And the Marshal, floating weightless through pitch-black corridors, has the feeling something is watching him...

We stopped there.

Again, thanks for the help, everyone.

 

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Posted (edited)
On 4/20/2019 at 4:30 PM, Ehrran said:

Thanks, everyone, for the advice. I picked up my copy of Allies and Adversaries Thursday, so that will make for good reading before the next session. Now, if only the other book I ordered would get "off the boat"... Probably using hamsters for the engine system, to save money.

Well, it seems like there's going to be a happy ending to this little story, after all. As soon as the Chiss' player(CP)  walked in, the player of the Togruta Jedi (TJ) asked him about his murderhobo antics before I could. I'm going to assume he (TJ) is reading these posts, because more than once, he's said a phrase that was written here. Coincidence? Possibly, but....

Basically, CP has a really heavy school load, and my table is a good place to blow off some steam. He wanted to see how powerful he could make the droid. All he used was the EotE CRB and Special Modifications to do it. Nothing else.(Another rule of mine, stated at Session Zero: Only official FFG physical books/DL's can be used to make characters.) And he did state that he was getting bored with the Chiss character because it, like the droid, was way OP, in his opinion. If the Chiss dies, he would replace it with something a little less powerful. He also said that the rules in Special Modifications are broken, and his two characters prove it.

I have to agree, although I have yet to make a PC/NPC using those rules. This is why I prefer to play a new system before I GM it. So I know what books/ rules to add or toss aside.

Although the conversation lasted maybe 5-10 minutes, it helped. He's still welcome at the table. IMHO, being a GM should count as credit hours towards a psychology degree. Jus' sayin'.

But,I may have to do a minor re-write of my story (ex., up the soak of the minion NPC's by one or two points, or increase rival/nemesis count) to account for the level of PC abilities.

The last session turned out great. They went to Columex to find leads on their YT-2400, and restock their gear. The Force-sensitive BH ran into a resistance cell that sent them back to the same colony ship they just left, to recover 4 unassembled X-wings in crates. Meanwhile, the human Marshal sobered up, got a case of the guilts, and decided to rescue the 400 colonists still frozen in cryosleep. They found the colony ship, drifting through an asteroid field, headed for an unstable orbit with a gas giant. A scan showed something unknown had taken over decks 2 - 6. The Marshal took the Y-wing and docked with an external airlock on deck 7. His job was to manually release the internal clamps holding the three Sil 5 pods containing the colonists and their stuff. The rest of the PC's were in their freighters. They had to shoot the external clamps, making Daunting Pilot checks to avoid the asteroid swarm they were flying through. Meanwhile, the creature that had taken over the colony ship was flinging parts of itself at the PC's freighters. And the Marshal, floating weightless through pitch-black corridors, has the feeling something is watching him...

We stopped there.

Again, thanks for the help, everyone.

 

This seems to be something of an oft-repeated refrain in my experience, as when I first got into this game I was told this as well. But like many, many other things in this system the GM and Players are supposed to be playing using Big Boy Rules as a layer above the written rules. If you want to be a child and break the game then you deserve the burnt bridges. Could have saved everyone time and grief and just announce that you feel the game is broken but since you are being respectful to your fellows you will use something called Restraint

On the occasion that the player is not able to practice restraint, you have to do it for them. 

Also, Rulings over Rules is also a GMing Concept that I feel applies here: namely the idea that as the GM you are to adjudicate the situations in the game and the rules are there to assist you and the players, not to be the authority. If the players are constantly beating you up with the rules then you've lost your authority to some degree and you will probably be hampered in being able to be the Unifying Perspective of the game space. 

But pertaining to Special Modifications in particular.

  • Pick a Template: This is something that to me always begs the question: Do you have a schematic for this item? I make them find schematics for anything that isn't a simple mechanical item or a subcomponent of some kind that is simple to make. The more technologically intense the crafted item the harder it is to get good schematics, which I also use as treasure. I have sent them on quests to find schematics many times. It's a great way to get the players to seek adventure in pursuit of a goal. 
  • Materials: The book says just lump it all in together as one item. I say No. There is a reason there are things called factories, and one of those reasons is that as you make more of something generally the cost per unit goes down. I make them get a hold of a grocery list of materials and components to build something, and it's always more expensive than it would be to just buy the item (assuming base price). Quests for materials have also happened a lot in my games. Materials can eat Time and Money fast, but more importantly you can use getting them as hooks.
  • Equipment gets destroyed: Threats and Despairs are even easier to apply when the item being used was not made by a manufacturing facility but was instead built on a greasy table in a jostling starship engineering space. Kit-bashed or homebrew equipment almost always lacks Testing, proper Research and Design, and usually does not have refined materials and sterile environments for construction. This means that in rough use or combat it will fail more readily than the professionally made stuff.
  • If they are making it to get out of an immediate jam I relax things a bit, but I make it so that it is an inferior item once the jam is over. In other words I want them to be able to craft their way out of situations but I don't let the kit-bashed item now be a full quality item. The thing was made in haste and it looks like crap and is not durable. 

 

Every once in a while you will get that player who asks for stuff out of game and when you start to list what will have to be accomplished to get it made they will say somehting like "Oh never mind then." In that moment you should feel satisfied that you did the right thing, don't feel bad that they decided to not pursue it because they were looking to bypass the difficulty and just get the loot.  Trying to get the trophy without running the race. 

Edited by Archlyte

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Tramp Graphics said:

I can’t say I agree with you @Archlyte, particularly regarding  the quality of hand-crafting something vs factory construction. Something created by a skilled craftsman is typically of better quality than something mass produced, and thus, a lot more expensive to purchase.

I agree with you actually, but just not for this topic in the context of Running Star Wars games. I'm not an absolutists so there can definitely be examples of situations where stuff is hand crafted and is better, but in the overall scope I have to ask the question of how does it affect the game to have completely self-sufficient characters. It is a perfectly viable option to make loot and externally made stuff be no better or even worse than the stuff the players make, but it does get rid of the play dimension of adventuring to get loot in my opinion. 

Also for the dimension of price I think you could ask for more for something made by a craftsman if it is rare for people to make their own stuff. If everyone just prints their own DL-44 then there's no novelty in Old Pete in his home forge hand-crafting one, and therefore the big price ask would not make sense. I do like the idea of the storied and skilled craftsman though, so to me it's important that ubiquitous industry-level crafting is not a thing. 

As somebody wisely said on these forums, If everything can be easily recycled and made into top grade equipment why are there junk worlds? 

Edited by Archlyte

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With regard to complex machines like blasters, keep in mind that one major advantage of mass production is interchangeable parts (which was, in fact, one of the historical driving forces behind the mass production of weapons).  Old Pete might have made a superior weapon; but if a focusing lens cracks, that superior weapons becomes an inferior doorstop until you can get another one custom ground.  

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