Friday, June 8, 2018

Discussion: How Would You Handle This?

The nature of the green text involves gay marriage in a fantasy world. I didn't choose it for that political message, but more because it shows a game where what the players want to do and what the GM wants to do are different. In the green text, the players go off in their own direction, cause a revolution, and take over a country - and good on the GM for going with it. Then they get smote by the GM's original plot which has been left ignored in the process.

In general I find myself ok with this. Provided the GM gave clues along the way that things were going bad, it is part of the world. Perhaps it could have been left alone considering how fully the campaign went in this other direction, but at the same time, just because we're not interacting with parts of the world doesn't mean it's not going to come interact with us.

Your thoughts?


  1. I do think that at a certain point before things are pulled down the GM should probably on a meta level make sure the players were aware of the situation behind the scenes.

  2. I think that's a fair way to play it. And honestly, if I had been a player in that game, I probably would have been laughing while my character gets slaughtered by the undead.

  3. The DM actually said that playing the game the players wanted made for a good campaign. They actually wrote those words. But they still don't get it.

    I have no problem with issues left unresolved coming back to cause problems, but what this DM did sounds like it completely negated the entire rest of what they'd accomplished. To what end?

    It's common for DMs to struggle to get players interested in their games. Self-motivated playeds should be treasured, not slapped down. I would have embraced this concept and helped the other players find ways to embrace it too, rather than just going along.

    The lich's army still would have shown up at the end, but it wouldn't have slaughtered everyone. Instead, the young democracy would have faced its first crisis. Many would have died, sure, but the PCs' social change would have had a chance to matter.

    And the lich, if not directly affected by the issue of gay marriage himself, would have had no issue with it. He's evil, but he's not pointlessly intolerant.

    1. I agree with about everything you said from a direct reading of the greentext. I tend to take most green-text posts as over simplifications of things, hence my brief caveat of "as long as this was in the game and could be seen so it wasn't out of left field." Also Coureton's point of talking to the players OOC to make sure they were aware of/ok with the those unresolved plots getting bigger.

      On a re-read right now, the big two problems lines are "this isn't what the GM wanted" and then the smite at the end. Ushering in a world of darkness is fine, but you are absolutely right, don't just destroy what the PCs worked for. If the players are taking your game in a way that isn't fun for you, that is a conversation that needs to happen, not a smiting that needs to happen.

    2. Thanks. Yes, I'd rather talk with the DM than assume bad intent.

      As far as it not being what the DM wanted, though, I can't really care. The DM still controls everything. If they don't like something they can add to the situation until they /do/ like it. The DM doesn't want their lich plot ignored? Okay, why not place some agents of the lich in the way of the PCs' goals? Or, more nefatiously, why not have the lich's allies appear to be aiding the PCs, so that public opinion turns against them. The public was on board before, but now maybe they think an authoritarian monarch might be a better choice.