Thursday, January 21, 2016

GM Fact, your NPCs are Technically Enablers, be careful what you include

i have heard a common complaint from Many GMs about players having too much loot, too large a portable armory or leveling too quickly. but hear me out on my answer to all of these,

if your players are too wealthy or happen to be growing in power too quickly. it is entirely your fault as the game master or storyteller. this complain applies to any RPG. but let me pick on D20 for a bit. not because i strongly dislike the D20 system (i honestly do) but because D20 is an outdated format with many old problems.

in common D20 System Fantasy RPGs. there tends to be an Escalation of magical equipment as you progress. this magical equipment is often gained by means of being pried from the cold and dead fingers of slain NPCs of importance. you know who made those NPCs and allowed them to have the very magic items the players slew them for? You, the Game Master/Storyteller did. it comes from an old philosophy which i will detail below.

the moment you include a new Character Building Option for your NPCs, players are going to want to also be able to use that option for their own characters as well. so say in a medieval setting, owning a suit of plate, a horse or a plot of land, required you to be a noble. most player characters will try to find a way to become, slay or impersonate members of nobility so they can have the plate, the horse and the land. include a Jedi NPC with a lightsaber in a Star Wars game, and players are going to want to learn to utilize the force and wield lightsabers of their own.

everything you allow for your NPCs, will eventually fall into the possession of your players at some point. if you don't want your players to have something, please don't include an NPC that has it. it is better to say plate armor doesn't exist in the setting and stick with it than to restrict plate armor to the nobility.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

a Philosophical Question? what happens when the badass is too badass for the world to handle?

message for all the Combat Roleplayers who go on an Ego Trip and Overpower their characters for the sake of Winning and Feeling Badass.
so? you can cleave 12 nameless bandits in half with one slash? why are you still fighting nameless bandits if you drastically out class them?

in fact, what does the master swordsman even learn from continuing to cleave bandits by the dozens? you have already proven that you are Way Too overqualified for the task. what meaningful reward are you getting for slaughtering these insignificant 1st level rogues?

in fact, if you can honestly do this, then you are at the point where you can literally learn no further from killing said bandits, and would best leave the task for somebody who can actually learn from the experience.
to simply put it?

if you are so damned competent at a potential task to the point that further competence is overkill? isn't it time to start the practice in an area your character isn't quite so competent at? as a 12th level fighter, 5th level bandit leaders fall by your hands in one round anyway. generally from a single called shot you could effortlessly make while blindfolded. what further point is there to wasting your time and hindering experience points that could be gained by novice Adventurers?

if your character is the badass god of badassery? how do they really progress?

sorry for the D&D Analogies, but i figured they fit as shorthands.