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Thread: Their is no "Sanity Clause": DM
07-19-1999, 05:45 PM #1Tommy AshtonGuest
Their is no "Sanity Clause": DM
>>James, you remember that "hive mind" comment you made earlier? Well, I
>>say, this is the longest screed where I have actually agreed with you.
>>Personally, It is my pet peeve to play in a "Storyline" type DM game...
>>Especially those who actively stifle innovative thinkers... Those that plot
>>and plan their fellow neighbors demise or plot a way for them to destroy
>>themselves. At least after about 3 years of gaming PBEMs, I know who to
Okay, I kept quiet but this last little line was a little too snotty.
Yeah, I have played with DM's who had the players road plotted out like the
pattern does to Rand al'Thor in the Robert Jordan novels, every excruiating
detail, with periodic hand slapping if you stray from their plot. It
really sucks. You don't want to know that the only thing that you are
doing is being an actor for anothers script. You as a player need to be
innovative and if he or she is a good DM then most of the direction of the
campaign needs to come from the player.
But then, there is the other side. I have had too many "innovative
thinkers" in my games who wanted to be the biggest, baddest guy on the
block the fastest. Especially in Birthright. If you put any obstacles to
their quest for power they screamed rape and threatened to leave the game.
"I am going to kill XXXXXXX on this mission or die trying." "What, I can't
build a city with just one action (i.e. one month)?" "Why is Ghoere
invading I haven't done anything to him!?" "Why is the Gorgon invading the
Brecht League headquarters, we haven't declared war on him yet." "I want
XXXXXXX holdings removed in my kingdom in one move." A lot of players
don't want even obstacles, they cry if a daisy drops on their foot on
their way to invade Avanil, they just want the treasure hold and thats it.
I call them powergamers, not innovative thinkers.
A good campaign is 40%DM/60%PC. The PC's should direct a campaigns flow.
If the players want to be in the central of the Imperial City politics and
the Dm wants to run the Keep in the Borderlands Adv, he should have them
outlawed to force them that way. NOT! If the PC's want to politic in the
Imperial City then at least 70% of all advs and motives should be here. As
a DM its your job to keep the players at least mildly content. At the same
time if the DM can setup up intrigue that allows the players to solve his
adventure and give them something to take back to the Imperial City why
not. A DM should play their characters fairly and evenly. I am sorry to
rant like this but I have seen too many players rant at DM's for hours just
cause they hadn't become supreme ruler in two turns.
>DM's should not plot the elevation or demise of their PC's with storylines,
>they should develope external events which will be obstacles for their
>players. Players must always have their own success or failure in their
>hands. The game world should not be an automated wax museum whereby when
>the players enter a room the automotons all speak and move about according
>to a script and then stay silent when the players move away. Stuff happens
>elsewhere, and sometimes this stuff impacts the players.
I agree with Kenneth 100%, and that doesn't happen very often :), usually I
agree with Memnoch. A DM shouldn't make plots he should create obstacles
for the journey. To think like this, it wasn't what made Odessius famous
was that he made it home, but his journey getting there.
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