Monday, March 25, 2013

"I thought it was set on stun!"

Randomly last night we started a Star Wars: Edge of the Empire game. It went well (I love Star Wars, so that's not hard) but more to the point some happenings in the session reminded me of one of the fun facts I tell new players when it comes to  making die rolls.  The fact? It's simple: bad die rolls make for good RP.

Now this isn't something I've never talked about on here before, but it is something that bares repeating on a regular basis. The idea behind it is simply that if all you ever do is succeed, or if the dice always go your way, then you aren't going to have much in the way for good role play chances. What I got to learn yesterday is that sometimes, with this rule, even a very good die roll can be bad and give a great chance for RP and character development.

The Situation
The situation was simple. The PCs had stowed away on a ship to get away from a Hutt whose ire we had all raised. While discussing what to do next after getting out of our hiding spot (in the cargo hold of course, the best place to hold these kind of meetings,) one of the crew came in and found us. Things quickly escalated to a fight and when my character took their shot...well, let's just say I rolled all the successes and murdered the guy. Not a bad thing all things considered, except that everyone else had their blasters on stun and we were trying to do the take down in a non-lethal manner.

So now I have a mess up OOC (I forgot to set my blaster to stun) and IC (I forgot to set my blaster to stun.) One of those situations where it would be very easyto just say that "of course Im on stun, that's what we're doing." instead I decided to go with the die rolls and my character dropped the person, looked to the group, and with a horrified expression said "I thought it was on stun!"

The Character Development
I like this moment because the game started very quickly and so while I had stats I didnt have a lot of time to develop the character in my head. I started in the usual spots, a bit of snarkiness and feeling things out. Then this situation happened and the character opened up in my mind. For one, they'd never been in a really serious face to face fight before. Instead, they wear the blaster for show, essentially a prop to keep people from taking them lightly. They're someone who'd rather run than fight. It's not the kind of character I play often.

None of this would have happened if I didn't just go with the die roll. What would have happened if I changed it? Well, for one, the character would be a much more savvy combatant. For another, they'd be a lot more ok with using violence and just controlling it. That one die roll though has managed to set the character out on a bit more fun and awesome path.

So, next time you see the dice come up some strange way see how you can use it to make more out of your character.


  1. So from "Randomly last night we started a Star Wars: Edge of the Empire game" am I to take it that you were just hanging out and next thing you know you're RPG'ing with friends? As I'm sure you have, you should revel in that right there.

    After reentering the RPG realm last year I've made some good strides in getting some regular gaming going...but the chances that I randomly find myself RPG'ing some night are close to zero. I commend you.

    Good post, by the way.

  2. Pretty much actually. I and some friends had been out at the archery range. When I got home people were making characters for a Star Wars game and it just went from there.

    And yeah, it is awesome. One of the joys of living with gamers and having almost all your friends be gamers too. :)

  3. I had a neat experience not long ago where a new guy decided to fill his empty canteen from a well at the bottom of some stairs. As DM, I had poisoned the well so it could be used as unholy water. The other players said, IC, "Are you sure you want to do that? I wouldn't drink water from a dungeon well like this".

    The more experienced players staying in character to help the new guy make it a level deeper was great.