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I made the GM cry....


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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

My overriding thought in this regard is "different strokes for different folks." Some games are heavy into combat' date=' some heavy into investigation, and others heavy into personal interaction. What works for me and my players will most likely not work for, say, Hugh's players or Mike's players. But, the important thing is, i[u']t works for us[/u].

 

Exactamundo. :)

 

I have my preferred playstyle. I know what it is. I know what approaches to play support it. I know which systems support it. That is what I do. :)

 

I built my fantasy hero game to give me what I want out of an fantasy thing. I loved most of Rolemaster's spell system. I duplicated it in champions. One of the things I really liked about D&D (3rd specifically) was poring over the books finding feats and abilities for my character so I created 40 pages worth of fantasy talents, so I can do that. I love the idea that a bar in a major metropolitan fantasy city would like like the cantina from star wars - so I use virtually every racial template in FH and converted 10 or 15 races over from Other fantasy games. All because I know what I like by analyzing myself and style.

I pitched it to my players - I said "I am putting together a fantasy game with a lot of elements of fantasy that I like - here they are, are you interested?" They were.

 

 

There are RPGs I've never played because of what kind of play they bring to the table - it may be great for others, but not for me (most White wolf games for instance). There are others I've stolen the bits I like for Hero - the examples above. There are games that I cannot mimic in Hero, but am interested in how they play as it brings a different experience - my liking the Dresden Files RPG for instance.

 

The important thing to do if figure out what you like, find a group that is similarly minded and play together.

 

The fact that my current game group had been together for nearly 20 years (with some minor changes due to moving and such things) tells me that this approach has worked well for us. :)

 

There is no right way or wrong way to play the game - just what fits your style and tone and what doesn't. Doubly true for a toolkit game like Hero.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

Are you kidding? And you were okay with this? I would be furious if I hadn't managed to even see my opponent and get a roleplaying scene with my enemy after seven years of continuous play. How does that even function? Enemies are characters' date=' too. The way that you make a nemesis non-nebulous is by allowing the characters to actually encounter him/her, etc, and develop a rivalry/adversarial in-character relationship/etc with them. Villains should be characters you LOVE to hate, not a blank slate with a bunch of really broken mind control abilities.[/quote']

 

OK, I have to call you out Lord Mhoram - how DARE you have enjoyed that game? Clearly it was wrongbadfun, and you should be deeply ashamed of having participated in it.

 

Or maybe, just maybe, the game was actually ENJOYABLE, including the mystery of the Master Villain. Not everything has to tie up in a neat bow. How long did it take Spidey to find out who the Green Goblin really was?

 

This is easy. I am a flying anything.. I grab the mentalist and put him in a full nelson' date=' and fly up, outside above the midst of his heavily armed agents who I know want to kill me. He has two choices. He can surrender, or I can die, and he can fall to his doom. Bring it on. Most mentalists are not physical powerhouses, and criminals are a cowardly, superstitious lot. If the mentalist calls my bluff, then I die, but he does, too.[/quote']

 

Or he Mind Controls you. Now he has another weapon in his arsenal. Back to his lair for some psychic surgery. And don't anyone snap him out of it - losing his memory of the period he's controlled is a Fate Worse Than Death.

 

And, again, you assume you can find him. You assume he will have a pink neon halo that says "Grab ME cuz I'm the Master Villain Mentalist. I could see this being one of those villains whose whole schtick is mystery. No one EVER sees the boss! He delivers commands through a message drop, and if actually seen, has loose robes, a full face covering and a voice modulator. That could be Lou Ferrigno or Farrah Fawcett under those robes for all anyone knows.

 

I can't even begin to think about how to respond to Hugh's post, because it confuses me.

 

Hugh, in your Champions game, what exactly do player characters DO? Now, I stress this because people build long, complicated character sheets that are designed specifically for the purpose of beating up super villains! If your characters aren't going into combat, in a COMIC BOOK ROLEPLAYING GAME, just what are you doing playing Champions in the first place? Violence isn't overly heroic? I always thought the most important part of the comic books was those big one page panels with one guy knocking the snot out of the other guy! If your characters aren't doing any fighting in Champions, just what the heck are they doing? Superhero combat is part of the genre. It's expected that the heroes and villains will throw down, with massive amounts of property damage, innocents to save, and lives at stake. That's what takes up the most panels in most of the comics I've read over the course of my life.

 

I would love to see how your game runs. But I'm not sure I'd like to play in it.

 

There's lots of combat in my games. But my players would also snap the mindslaves out of their trance at the cost of a few weeks' memories, and those freed would more likely be grateful for being rescued than plotting dark vengeance against those nasty Capes who shook me out of being a drug dealer's slave. You told us heroes aren't looking for the easy answer. Violence is the easy answer. Given a choice, that's not the approach the heroes will take. Lucky for an exciting game, it's often the only option they are left with.

 

But tying the villain to a chair and beating him until he does what I want? No, that doesn't seem remotely heroic to me. It seems like something that could be necessitated in some games. But it's not what the hero would want to do, and it would not be his first choice. If it's necessary (and in genre/tone) to beat a confession, or a mind control reversal, out of the villain, that action might be taken. Often, combat will be the best or only choice. And maybe the best choice is sacrificing 6 weeks of memory to free the mindslaves and stop the SuperDrug flooding the city.

 

You seem deeply offended that the One True Way you wanted the game to run wasn't used. I'm not sure why that is. In my games, I like to think I let the players devise solutions, and don't look for ways to punish them for having the audacity not to solve it in the manner I had plotted out in my head. Maybe they're enjoying the Mystery Mentalist, so I'll change my plan about a face to face confrontation. Maybe they're frustrated by never getting close to the Mystery Mentalist, so I'll change my plan and set up a scenario to finalize that plotline.

 

It's not about their characters following my script. It's about me designing/running scenarios for their characters that the players will enjoy. Sometimes, that means deviating from my own plans. Sometimes it means they throw a curve ball and demolish the villain's master plan way easier than I would have thought - and kudos to LM's GM for rolling with it and keeping the game fun. Sometimes it means they miss an obvious (or so I thought) solution, make a tactical error, or otherwise lose when I expected a win. Well, then it's up to me to adjust the plotline to keep them in the game, and figure out what the villains will do with the unconscious heros.

 

I can remember at least one time one of my players looked at the playmat, chuckled and said "Guys, I think this is one of those fights we weren't meant to win." and was dead wrong. I was only half running the villains by that time, because I was working out what would happen next. The later rematch was pretty memorable. Now, that's not the ONLY time I remember him saying it - sometimes he was right. And sometimes he didn't say it because they didn't lose as planned. That's what makes it worth playing the game - if I wanted to script out the whole plot, with all successes and failures preordained, I could just write fanfiction.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

- and kudos to LM's GM for rolling with it and keeping the game fun.

 

He's really good at that - we have a creative bunch of players (the fact that all of us GM at some point or another is a big part of that) and he has to adjust to our wonky ideas all the time. He does it better than I do when I GM.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

This is easy. I am a flying anything.. I grab the mentalist and put him in a full nelson' date=' and fly up, outside above the midst of his heavily armed agents who I know want to kill me. He has two choices. He can surrender, or I can die, and he can fall to his doom. Bring it on. Most mentalists are not physical powerhouses, and criminals are a cowardly, superstitious lot. If the mentalist calls my bluff, then I die, but he does, too.[/quote']

Okay,

 

1) He mind controls you to fly him away.

 

2) He switches minds and you and his current body dies.

 

3) He can fly, too.

 

4) He is also a physical powerhouse.

 

Shall I go on?

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

This is easy. I am a flying anything.. I grab the mentalist and put him in a full nelson' date=' and fly up, outside above the midst of his heavily armed agents who I know want to kill me. He has two choices. He can surrender, or I can die, and he can fall to his doom. Bring it on. Most mentalists are not physical powerhouses, and criminals are a cowardly, superstitious lot. If the mentalist calls my bluff, then I die, but he does, too.[/quote']

 

He's a MENTALIST. You put him in a Full Nelson, fly high into the air, and he MIND CONTROLS you to take him somewhere safe, land him gently on the ground, forget where you put him, and fly back to confront his heavily-armed goons. Oh, and because you clearly have delusions of grandeur, it shouldn't be difficult to convince you to fight them with both arms behind your back either.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

1) He mind controls you to fly him away.

 

A reasonable expectation, but not in a full nelson. He requires line of sight to use his abilities.

 

2) He switches minds and you and his current body dies.

 

See above

 

3) He can fly, too.

 

If such is the case, this guy is way too powerful for a four color teen champions game. See parameters above.

 

4) He is also a physical powerhouse.

 

See above. A Brick Mentalist is pretty much broken in almost any game system. When a GM throws something like this at his group, he had better have a darned good reason.

 

Most of the things you're talking about are fine...in a high powered game where the rules of four color comics are not in effect. But if you care about game balance and fairness as a GM even one iota, a lot of this stuff just winds up with the GM being a jackass.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

1) He mind controls you to fly him away.

 

A reasonable expectation, but not in a full nelson. He requires line of sight to use his abilities.

 

He has more than enough phases to use Mind Scan before using Mind Control. I would certainly expect a behind the scenes mentalist villain to have mindscan.

 

2) He switches minds and you and his current body dies.

 

See above

 

Ditto. And the "Switch Minds" ability could certainly be a power that requires, say, physical contact instead of LoS.

 

3) He can fly, too.

 

If such is the case, this guy is way too powerful for a four color teen champions game. See parameters above.

 

You're powerful enough to fly past all his guards, land, Grab (wait a phase with his armed guards around) and take off again, but it's unreasonable he, the mastermind villain, could have mental powers and be able to fly?

 

4) He is also a physical powerhouse.

 

See above. A Brick Mentalist is pretty much broken in almost any game system. When a GM throws something like this at his group, he had better have a darned good reason.

 

Like, say, he is the campaign master villain? All those points the in context Mentalist spent to NOT be easily located can be re-purposed to something, given you can easily find and get to him.

 

Most of the things you're talking about are fine...in a high powered game where the rules of four color comics are not in effect. But if you care about game balance and fairness as a GM even one iota' date=' a lot of this stuff just winds up with the GM being a jackass.[/quote']

 

If you care about game balance and fairness, you don't respond to unanticipated tactics by the PC's by looking for the worst possible result, then multiplying it by a factor of 10, to punish the players for having the audacity to solve the problem in a manner other than your approved solution.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

Touching the enemy gives you a good enough idea of his postion to attack him without Line of sight.

 

Unless things have changed, allowing a power with LOS to attack based on other senses is optional. In any case, between the possibility that the villain has mind scan which he can use to acquire a lock in fairly short order and the likelihood the villain gets at least one action before the hero is able to establish that Grab *, I don't find the "fly in and grab him" scenario particularly likely to succeed.

 

* The hero has to find the master villain. I doubt he stands out in the open, even surrounded by armed guards. Then we have to establish which guy he is - why would he want to look distinctive to a casual onlooker? The flying hero needs to maneuver in close - turn modes don't make that a guaranteed easy task, exacerbated by the fact that Balabanto wants to attack from behind (nb: there is no "facing rule" in Hero - if you're flying around behind him, I expect he's turning, absent something else to focus on), so he may not be able to Grab on the first phase the villain becomes aware of him. Nothing prevents the villain Aborting to defend against the Grab - perhaps a Dodge for +3 DCV (coupled with your -1 OCV to Grab, and possible further negative modifiers if you decided a Grab By would speed the process). Perhaps a Dive for Cover - he need only make a DEX roll to pull that one off.

 

Maybe he has 360 degree vision defined as seeing through the eyes of his followers (limited, no doubt, but works pretty good as his followers stare at the flier who just took off with the boss) and can establish LOS that way.

 

I don't find Balabanto's plan remotely foolproof, even ignoring the need to determine and get to the master villain's larger scale location undetected.

 

Of course, if the GM were to decide Balabanto's plan is unsuccessful, or has negative consequences, or the villain (the campaign master villain!) just isn't the easy target Balabanto envisions, then he will be classified as a jackass not playing in genre, because, just as no solution other than the One True Way of the GM can ever be considered acceptable, anything that might frustrate the One True Way of the Player can only be the GM adopting an unfair, unbalanced, adversarial game style.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

Unless things have changed' date=' allowing a power with LOS to attack based on other senses is optional.[/quote']

Yes. But the examples all are for aming because your targetting sense is totally blocked (like behind a barrier), as long as "he is reseonably sure" the target is there.

 

Or just look at the arm that is grabbing you :)

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

Everyone here is beginning to sound as stubborn as Balabanto. Balabanto, I respect stubborn because I am stubborn. In your campaign the situation as described may not have been satisfactory. I won't argue that. I'd just like to hear you admit that since no-one in the game had any problems with it, and most importanly, they all had fun, that perhaps, for them, just then, that was an okay way to deal with the situation. A recurrent mystery-villain can add flavor to a campaign, if used judiciously.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

My Cthulhu players just did it to me. A scenario I'd designed to teach them that they're not unbeatable, where their huge arsenal of weapons and magic would avail them naught, and McGinty completely derailed it with two questions and a suggestion. *headdesk* It's salvageable, but the repercussions won't happen until months of game time have elapsed. *cries into all the notes and handouts*

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

The aftermath of ghastly events in 1882 and 1883, which McGinty and Al are investigating. They've been out to see the Blasted Heath, researched what they could about the bizarre meteor that landed there, and are now off to interview the aged Ammi Pierce, witness to events. He tells them everything, even how he narrowly avoided prison time for apparently blowing half the valley to Kingdom Come, and gibbers a bit about the way the Blasted Heath gets a little bigger every year, and way he's got to listenin' for something every oddly silent spring.

McGinty
: The dead zone still growing?

GM
: So you've been told.

McGinty
: But there's still plant life around the edge?

GM
: Sickly and stunted, but yes.

McGinty
: How much would it cost to cropdust the valley with herbicide and tell the Arkham council to cancel the reservoir because of the taint in the soil?

GM
: ....
*realises the PCs will just spray by hand if they have to, McGinty already has the respect of the council, and I've just given them all the reports and witness statements they'll need to back it up* .... *headesk*
:weep:

 

 

Other GM
: I sympathise - one of my players just blinded the entire army they were supposed to fight.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

The following is an exerpt from one of my favorite gaming websites. All credit goes to Ian, the owner of said website:

 

Superhero campaign. The usual array of eccentrics labelled a superhero team, with Ian's character being Backlash, a high-powered Energy Absorber and Projector. That adventure called for the group to bust into a supervillain's underground lair and fight him. The Referee had thoroughly scripted out the adventure beforehand, including days of work on an elaborate maze of booby-traps for the group to fight their way through. The Referee had bragged about this repeatedly, so the players knew it was going to be tough.

Having watched Star Trek II just before the session, Ian was imbued with the idea of "...if you don't like the game, then change the rules...". So, when facing the entrance to the Ref's funhouse maze, he opted for a surprise move. Backlash utilized his powers to soak up a huge amount of electrical energy from the base (stuck his finger in a convenient power outlet - kiddies, don't try this at home).

He then unleashed the absorbed power in one humungous Energy Blast that blew a twenty foot wide tunnel right THROUGH the maze and into the guts of the base! Good ol' Backlash didn't have enough amps left to zap a ladybug, but it didn't matter. Instead of spending several hours battling through the maze, the group strolled inside the base within ten minutes. Given that the bad guys suddenly had a lot less time to prepare their interior defenses, and that the group had arrived in good condition, it did not go well for that villain.

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Re: I made the GM cry....

 

Eh, you guys go on without me. I'm gonna have a meaningful philosophical discussion with this, instead:

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]39828[/ATTACH]

 

Less entertaining, but perhaps ultimately as productive.

 

Edit: Never mind

 

Probably the best response. I approve.

 

Lucius Alexander

 

The palindromedary asks why I bothered to post.

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