Invincible Players

Do You?

Yes
2
25%
No
4
50%
Sometimes
1
13%
N/A
1
13%
 
Total votes: 8

Ruffnut
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Ruffnut » Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:31 pm

Eddie wrote:how is the situation different though?
I mean "I built a vast epic around John's character and then he randomly died due to bad luck (actually bad player choices) but I will save them to continue my story"

is surely the same as "I built a vast epic around John's character but now he has decided he wants to make a new character so I will not be able to continue my story"?

I mean in the first instance maybe John can just "re-skin" his character: okay so he has been an ex-soldier but you don't find the combat all that fun and would rather play a wizard or priest, how about your character is still from the army but was the squad mage or priest?
we can re-write history so this is always how he has been, you keep the character and the story continues.

but in the alternative view he no longer wants to play a human combat character, yearns to play a goblin stealthy type who avoids combat wherever possible: the "re-writing history option" is just not here and the epic has been lost anyway.
He could be a goblin spy who used a disguise to infiltrate the humans and poses as a warrior.
He just sits there tapping away all day on a tiny screen. But he tells everyone that he is slaying Orcs.

Eddie
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Eddie » Tue Nov 01, 2016 7:49 pm

but in my hypothetical scenario John no longer wants to play that character.
at all.
he wants to play a sneaky goblin who doesn't get into combat, unlike his previous ex-soldier who thrived for that kind of thing.

while I say this is a hypothetical scenario this is something I have happened a number of times in game, I have always managed to bring the storyline back on track anyway, but I now feel that this need (to save the story) is an unnecessary situation to be in.

which is part of why I prefer sandbox style games in the first place.

Ruffnut
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Ruffnut » Tue Nov 01, 2016 7:51 pm

Eddie wrote:but in my hypothetical scenario John no longer wants to play that character.
at all.
he wants to play a sneaky goblin who doesn't get into combat, unlike his previous ex-soldier who thrived for that kind of thing.

while I say this is a hypothetical scenario this is something I have happened a number of times in game, I have always managed to bring the storyline back on track anyway, but I now feel that this need (to save the story) is an unnecessary situation to be in.

which is part of why I prefer sandbox style games in the first place.
Maybe he was acting?
He just sits there tapping away all day on a tiny screen. But he tells everyone that he is slaying Orcs.

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SkinnyOrc
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by SkinnyOrc » Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:16 am

Everyone's got a different style of game they like, heroes of legend with the world revolving around them to just another band of sell swords in an uncaring world and everything in between. Same with heavily plotted versus total sandbox and everything between those. So I'm not going to say one's better than another. My experience is the most important thing is the GM and players agree on the style together, it doesn't work if they want different games.

Having said that I can see it causing problems if the plotting's so rigid the characters aren't allowed to die. Once the players know that the game will lose something. As the Mythbusters say, failure is always an option! But I can't really imagine a plot where the characters are so central you couldn't introduce new ones.

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LordArioch
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by LordArioch » Sun Nov 06, 2016 1:36 pm

Bronn wrote:I don't plan adventures around particular characters. The world exists independently of them, full of conflict, cataclysm and intrigue. Situations will resolve for better or worse without hero involvement. If they do get involved they have a chance of imposing their will upon the world, but it won't be easy. They may fail. They may die. That's the risk, and a big part of the fun.
+1. Very well-put! 8)

If you feel that the RAW is too harsh and deadly for Heroes there are a variety of means to give PCs a chance in the campaign, e.g. resurrection rules (although, in AFF, that is explicitly not an option BtB), healing spells and potions, making death occur -- not at -4 STAMINA -- but at -10, the more generous issuance of additional LUCK points, and so forth.

Another mechanic that I have recently engineered in my houserule document is to allow veteran PCs to insta-kill (after a successful attack roll) opponents with 5 STAMINA points or less (as Orcs, Goblins, Skeletons, inter alia). That way Heroes may have the ability to mow through hordes of low-STAMINA mooks, henchmen, lesser monsters, etc. This was inspired by an old D&D rule where PCs get a number of attacks equal to their level when fighting against 1 hit die or less (termed "man-type") opponents. If a monster encountered has a STAMINA score above 5, like the Zombie (with 6), then the Director just has to drop that stat down a notch to allow the Heroes to cut a swath of destruction through the surrounding mass of undead instead of tediously grinding through attack, damage and damage reduction rolls for each felled opponent.

STAMINA 5: bay, blog, boar (wild), decayer, eagle, gnome, goblin, gonchong, hamakei, hawk, homunculus, wild hill man, iron-eater, kokomokoa, krell, mantis man, marsh wraith, medusa, minion, obligath, orc, pixie, pygmy, saltsucker, sightmaster, skeleton, skorn, slykk, spider man, woodling.
STAMINA 4: ape-dog/dog-ape, bat, bat-fish, fire imp, dragonfly (giant), eel, elvin, firesprite, killer bee, lava imp,
leprechaun, marsh hopper, mudclaw, mungie, rat (giant), red-eye, replicanth, scout, snuff hound, troglodyte.
STAMINA 3: grannit, gremlin (wingless), jabberwing, leaf beast, minimite, raven, snake (sea).
STAMINA 2: clone, eye stinger, harpoon fly, phantom, sleeping grass, snake, snapperfish.
STAMINA 1: flesh grub, giant leech, piranha.
Last edited by LordArioch on Tue Nov 08, 2016 4:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Ruffnut
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Ruffnut » Mon Nov 07, 2016 10:01 pm

COOOOOL! 8)
He just sits there tapping away all day on a tiny screen. But he tells everyone that he is slaying Orcs.

Dupont
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Dupont » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:34 pm

For me AFF is a breath of fresh air. The group I am running it for have gotten a little lazy and a little self indulgent over the years. 'Pff! We dont need to sneak, we don't even need to check most of these doors. We know (for one suspicious reason or another) where that pesky Warlock is...'

The truth is they are bringing these bad habits with them from other games and in many ways it's my fault as I have allowed it to happen. The reason being partly my desire for storytelling over what is essentially metagaming ( as the cool kids call it) from some quarters within our group and rather than fix it, its allowed it to set in. What I have ended up with is a situation where one member of the group dominates the rest ( they work brilliantly when he isn't there interestingly) and pushes play towards that player's desired goal... This currently being the end boss without worrying about any side doors. Trying to develop games driven by story has been a factor in allowing this to happen and deepen imo and now I have hard work to do. AFF allows me to be completely at ease with character death, or the potential for it. The characters are easy to make and easy to make interesting too. But they can tell I am ok if they lose a PC. Frankly they are going to have a really tough time on the other side of the river as they have barely investigated or found anything to help them when they do so losing 1 PC only may be a miracle at this point. In games where the Characters are a big deal right from the start, lots of work to make and develop stories within them its not always as easy, especially if the main thrust of gameplay also relies on that.

AFF is full of story and background but you don't have to know it all to play there successfully. Character depth can develop, little pieces at a time and I like that method often a lot more than having a very defined character from the very start. The story grows in the telling, we for instance now know our Dwarf is a Gemsmith rather than the woodworker the rest of the party hoped could make a raft from the GIANT's table, we discovered that at the point where it would have helped if he was a woodworker but to his credit that player discussed the options and the setting with me and decided on Gemsmith - little pieces of development occuring already . For me the last thing I need is characters feeling invincible, and story when its driven by characters that have slowly developed like this is the most fun to play in my experience. That said, it is fun to develop a strong character early on but not all parties can always handle it and some players exploit it.
"Bright the Hawk's flight on the empty sky"

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SkinnyOrc
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by SkinnyOrc » Tue Dec 20, 2016 3:24 am

One of the smartest moves AFF made was to award experience for achieving objectives rather than for killing things and finding treasure. Straight away that moves the focus on to story and away from power gaming. You can take that even further by awarding bonus experience for good roleplaying of their characters, and acting on info their characters wouldn't know isn't good roleplaying.

There's a fine line between scripting and restricting their freedom so it's a balancing act. But sometimes they should have to learn something or find something before they can do something else. Although if they find another way to get there you hadn't thought of then great, as long is it's based on character knowledge. If you do include sandbox style side quests that are completely optional you have to accept they may just skip them. That style of play works better if you're comfortable winging it from an outline so you don't have to put too much work up front into something they may not use. But optional or not you can award experience for completing objectives on the way to the final objective, that way if they skip it they miss out.

As far as not sneaking, listening at doors, etc. goes, everything should have consequences. Have them be surprised sometimes (the AFF surprise rule is pretty nasty) or have another group of monsters join in while they're still fighting the first (outnumbering in AFF is also nasty).

My experience is any changes in how you run things are better made clear to everyone before you start so they can't say they didn't know. It's unfortunate you've got a player who sounds a bit immature and competitive but hopefully with a few tweaks to the game you can get them on board.

Lorian
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Lorian » Tue Dec 20, 2016 8:44 am

Very good! I once played a thief. We had just killed a lich lord famous for his traps. After the battle we came to the treasury and although I knew it was probably trapped my thief didn't so I made him jump in shouting "We're Rich! ".Luckily the trap wasn't too severe.
Life is merely a speck of dust on the beach of time...


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Dupont
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Dupont » Tue Dec 20, 2016 11:46 pm

SkinnyOrc wrote:One of the smartest moves AFF made was to award experience for achieving objectives rather than for killing things and finding treasure. Straight away that moves the focus on to story and away from power gaming. You can take that even further by awarding bonus experience for good roleplaying of their characters, and acting on info their characters wouldn't know isn't good roleplaying.
I completely agree, In fact, reading your comments I think am now considering detailing in the XP awards process exactly what behaviours gained what too in order to reinforce whats what and help the group as a whole understand what behaviour directly benefits them.
SkinnyOrc wrote:There's a fine line between scripting and restricting their freedom so it's a balancing act. But sometimes they should have to learn something or find something before they can do something else. Although if they find another way to get there you hadn't thought of then great, as long is it's based on character knowledge. If you do include sandbox style side quests that are completely optional you have to accept they may just skip them. That style of play works better if you're comfortable winging it from an outline so you don't have to put too much work up front into something they may not use. But optional or not you can award experience for completing objectives on the way to the final objective, that way if they skip it they miss out.
I think for me, what is frustrating is seeing other player ideas being sidelined or ignored in favour of supposed superior reasoning purely based on one person's persuasiveness. The irony that those decisions are often ill informed and maybe rash is another matter but I want play to be driven by the party as a whole, if it is then I dont mind if they get toasted by dragonfire. I want the whole group playing like I know they can. I am more than happy with Sandbox and some of my players are good to improvise with, in fact they all have their moments. If they had made it across the river using the table I would have gladly awarded them a luck point.
SkinnyOrc wrote:As far as not sneaking, listening at doors, etc. goes, everything should have consequences. Have them be surprised sometimes (the AFF surprise rule is pretty nasty) or have another group of monsters join in while they're still fighting the first (outnumbering in AFF is also nasty).

My experience is any changes in how you run things are better made clear to everyone before you start so they can't say they didn't know.


Hopefully they are starting to get the message and what you have described here is pretty close to what has happened so far, even if there is some resistance from one party member, the rest are more than happy to sneak and take precautions. As you say surprise is quite painful and so are high numbers of enemies.
"Bright the Hawk's flight on the empty sky"

Dupont
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Re: Invincible Players

Post by Dupont » Tue Dec 20, 2016 11:48 pm

Lorian wrote:Very good! I once played a thief. We had just killed a lich lord famous for his traps. After the battle we came to the treasury and although I knew it was probably trapped my thief didn't so I made him jump in shouting "We're Rich! ".Luckily the trap wasn't too severe.
:D Thats what makes the games entertaining, when other players in the group are willing to take risks even if they know they are, for the sake of roleplaying or entertainment. Good stuff!
"Bright the Hawk's flight on the empty sky"

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