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Old 03-05-2007, 10:43 PM   #22
Kyle Aaron
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Default Re: Player Paranoia and Character Surprise: How to GM

This is one of the rare cases where I agree with Kromm's approach to things, more or less. If you want to be the all-round hero - spend the points on it! And the GM, for their part, should cut some slack. "But I would have -" "Would you? Okay, make an IQ roll."

There's also a degree of trust involved. I've sometimes found that players new to my GMing take a while to settle in, and realise that I'm there to present an interesting game world - I'm not there to screw them up for giggles. I'm not an adversary, I'm just a guy who has a whole heap of NPCs to play. That's a GM - a player who has many characters instead of one, and who makes judgments about rules. There is no malice at my game table. Once they realise that, most settle down and relax.

But it's true there are different player responses to character failure, loss, imprisonment, maiming and so on. Just the other day I was saying to a gamer buddy, "I have these two players... for one, a failed dice roll is just a failure, and something to swear at. For the other, a failure is something to laugh at, or something which is going to make the game more interesting." And then last night at the first session of a new campaign, they confirmed this view for me. One was creating a character, and gave him "bad knee" and "law-abiding" as traits. The other player said, "why do always create flawed characters?" The player looked puzzled and surprised, and said, "Because they're fun, of course. Being flawless is boring!" Guess which of the two players consistently has more fun... ;)
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"Kyle's games aren't remotely thespy... I'd say they're more high-minded hack."
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