Your characters are dead again! Isn't this fun!?

Why do I torment myself in this way? Do I hate myself that much? Do I feel I must atone in some way for a past misdeed? Why do I continue to drop in on the WOTC D&D Forums when I know how awful they are?

I’m not stupid, and I can learn from my actions. In theory. So you’d think that by now I would have given up on these forums as some kind of place where one could actually discuss the game and share ideas. Well you can, so long as you only want ideas for making ridiculously powerful idiotic characters who are all evil, crazy, or both. Oh ho, another story about a character who killed all the other players for personal gain because he’s crazy and evil! Oh boy how exciting and original!

They’re all playing the same character. He’s half-something, half-something else (so he can rack up bonuses). He’s selfishly motivated. He’s evil and/or crazy. He’s got amazing stats and equipment. Am I even playing the same game as these morons?

Normally I wouldn’t mind. Do whatever you want, I don’t care. I’m not in your group, so you’re not bugging me. But the thing is, this is a forum for discussion of the game and they’re ALL like that.

And it’s not just the players. Here’s a thread for DMs:;f=117

(as you can see, I’ve been busy stirring shit in the thread, because I’m tired of the attitude.)

Now granted, I’d like to kill off most of the players I read about on the forums, but this is just silly. Bragging about stupid unfair things you did to kill off players? Can someone point me to the part in the DMG where it awards experience to the DM for player-killing? Is no one besides my group playing this game for interaction and fun?

I just don’t get it. I don’t get the constant need to role-play an asshole. I don’t get the desire to “win” at D&D. I don’t get the idea that the players and the DM are in competition with each other. I don’t know why these people aren’t just online killing 12 year olds for fun in Diablo.

Yeah, I know, to each his own. But there’s a part of me that is frightened for another reason. WOTC now owns D&D, and I saw what WOTC did to Magic. They noticed that a lot of the players in Magic were dickheads, and what did they do? Encouraged them. I know people at WOTC, and they live and die by “market research”. If MR tells them players are assholes, they’ll ramp up their projects catering to assholes.

I don’t know why it bugs me so much, but it does.

Oh, and apparently there’s some kind of grammar and spelling test that you’re required to fail before posting there.

heh–that’s why I try and avoid all that virtual RP mess. I’ve got a set of 5-8 players and we sit down IRL to play, dice and all. Even then, I’ve still got one player who insists on raping the rules to create ridiculous abilities and damages. 68 points on one rapier blow? :rolleyes: Whatever. Usually when I’m DMing I just halve his damage. That way he can feel all superior and clever, and my monsters can last longer than a round and a half.
Buck up Lego–the great thing about this game is you can play it however you want to. Let the eight-year-olds have their fun, and we grown-ups can focus on enjoyable adventures with coherent and original plots.


Well I too play in reality, not online. Why I hate online gamers is another story.

however, here’s another reason for my concern. The fellowship is breaking. My DM and her husband are moving in August, leaving only me and one other person - not enough for a group. So I’ll have to find me another group. Is this what’s waiting for me out there?

The thing that gets me is that WOTC caters to these munchkins! In Dragon Magazine, there’s a little mini-feature called ‘Power Play’ that teaches you how to put together a first-level character capable of 13 attacks per round, starting at +78 to hit, who can cast spells, melee and still make great sushi!

sigh And yeah, I realize that munchkins gotta play, too, but does WOTC have to pander to these jerks? All I can say is thank God I ended up with a gaming group of intelligent people who truly enjoy role-playing their characters and aren’t hung up on power-gaming. Hell, one of the characters in my group doesn’t have an ability score above 15, and has two below 10! He’s not the most effective combatant, but he’s sure fun to have in the group, and his personality is role-played to the HILT. Thank goodness there’s gamers like him out there, otherwise I’d have given up on this particular hobby LONG ago.

I used to RP on line. Not D&D, but WtA (a game from White Wolf) and I stooped playing for many reasons but one was that I got tired of characters that made no sense and were just player killers so I know how you feel.

I would understand a bit if they were new players. I was a bit of a twink myself at first, but I watched the more experienced players and learned how to play well. There is no excuse for experienced players to be twinks though.

I tried the IRL gaming, but because half the members usually failed to show and when they did show theysat around messing with a guitar it did not work well.

Lego, not everyone out there is a munchkin. If you’re worried about it, then you should plan to run the game, so you can control the tone.

And when you put up signs in the gaming store advertising for players, just be sure to include a few key phrases:

" . . . non-combat oriented . . ."

“. . . with a strong focus on role-playing and the emotional development of characters. . .”

" . . . XP awarded sparingly . . . "
" . . . expect to do some historical research . . . "

". . . no out-of-period powers, skills or equipment allowed . . . "

The munchkins will squeal and run, like a Vampire player shrinks from sunlight or pastel-colored clothing.

As a GM, I gained amazing satisfaction and enjoyment from killing off the players’ characters. Every session was an attempt to come up with new and exciting ways to kill off the party, to always stay one step ahead of the players.

Of course, I was running Paranoia[sup]TM[/sup] at the time.

For a good reason, Lego- those 12-year-olds would kick their asses. Powergaming in D&D is for munchkins who can’t click fast enough to powergame in Diablo.

One of my favorite suggestions of my friend Eric was to go to a VtM LARP as the Hawaiian contingent. Bright, floral shirts and shorts, flip-flops, sunglasses, and no angst. I wish I had done it.

Beat me to it, John. It’s typical failed gamer syndrome. They can’t get a date, they can’t play sports, they can’t play FPS games . . . so, they like to abuse other munchkins.

The people I tabletop with are the same ones I play Amber diceless with, so I know they’re good players (although I prefer a little more hack than I’m getting). But I admit that I got lucky.
“I wanna cast . . . magic missile!”


Anyone seen John Kovalic’s “Clanbook Perky” supplement for V:tM? It was in an issue of DOrk Tower a while back.

Legomancer, you might be interested in Neverwinter Nights, which is (I think) due out this summer. If I understand it correctly, it’s basically multiplayer D&D online, where a DM can set up a game and let his players log into it to play. It might let the people who are moving away continue playing with you and your group.


“I’ll…attack the darkness!”

Just like it was due out last fall. I’ll believe it when I see it. :frowning:

True enough. I have more faith in seeing that hit the shelves than I do in seeing Shadowbane. :smiley:

From the Neverwinter Nights forum, and a post from the joint CEOs of BioWare:

(italics mine) They say once burned, twice shy, and I’ve been burned on release dates for well over a decade now, but I’m still naive enough to believe that if they say it’s a conservative estimate, they’ll get it out in Summer 02.

Of course, some people say that TECHNICALLY summer goes until the autumn solstice on Sep 21… but whatcha gonna do?

I just had to viciously cut my group in half. They were great guys, and I like every one of them personally, but the stress of running a party that was half-twink was incredible. Now we’re down to a group of 4 (I like to play with 5) but we don’t have the problems.

Let’s see, there was:

A.: Sweet, but insisted that his character, though level 5, was half-god, and as such had [echoey voice] UberPowers![/echoey voice] No matter what level characters we were running with, A.'s all had to have devine-class crap, or he got pouty.

J.: A bit slow, but generally a very nice guy. Actually created a character that in play: never spoke, never left his room, and actually chased away the other PCs because they were on his property. He had prophecies about him, though. Just ask him. Not to mention the capes. The capes with standing collars. And spider symbols.

M.: J’s girlfriend. I’ve got nothing against female gamers, I’m one myself, but Girlfriend Of Gamers (or GOGs, as we call them - and they can be either sex) are icky to play with. She stopped participating after the first two months. She kept coming though, every week. Her sole contribution was cross-stitch, attempting to side-track us at every single lull and occationally asking “what’s my character doing?”… and then getting upset when the answer was always, “I don’t know. What is your character doing?”

C.: This kid is a real sweetheart. I love him to death. But I will not have anyone attempt to play a 7 foot tall ex-assassin who got kicked out for being too badass, with ever-apearing equipment and a sullen demeanor ever again or the consequenses will not be pretty.

I’m not having headaches anymore, and I’m actually looking forward to role-playing day again.

Podkayne, if I saw a sign that said those things, I would go to see my new best friends as soon as possible, and I don’t think they could persuade me to leave for a long, long time.

Legomancer, have you been to the EN World messageboards? If not, you should give them a try:

Much more mature discussion there. Every time I give in and visit the WOTC boards I feel dirty.


A good gaming group is like a beautiful ice sculpture in Death Valley in the depths of summer, a few years after the most pessimistic worrier about global warming was shamed because of being too optimistic about what highs would reach. Treasure them while they last, mourn when they pass, and reflect on the impermanence of all. Dust. Wind. Dude.

Neverwinter Nights will be a slower-paced Diablo. Roleplaying’s enjoyment lies in the interaction, not killing things on a computer screen to gorgeous special effects (though don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of the latter, I just don’t confuse it with the former). Online roleplaing requires finding a good text-based MU* of some sort, which is a trek through another kind of Death Valley wasteland in its own right.

Damn, Lego, I wanna be in your game.

A few months ago I ran a game. D&D 3E, and it was all set in a huge city by the name of Morn. I had TONS of stuff planned. Everything was linked- the wizard courting the paladin’s widowed mother was actually seeking revenge for the group killing a Half-Orc (the Half-Orc was the wizards brother, though they kept it secret), that sort of thing. Wheels within wheels.

I set the situation up in such a manner as to have potential party development for years. The bad guy at the beginning was a new King of Thieves- although I intended the group to confront him when they reached level 8 or so (they started at third level). Once they defeated him, it was then going to be found out that he was causing all sorts of problems because there was an even worse threat- an 800-year-old vampire. I expected them to be able to take the vampire down around level 15 or so, when I’d reveal something even WORSE.

I dropped hints about all of this, all over the place. Unfortunately…

They decided to take out the vampire. At level four.

The cleric’s superior told him that there was NO WAY that they’d survive. They still wanted to do it.

The paladin’s lord told her that they’d all die, that they should wait. Nope, no stoppin’ 'em.

The ghost of the ranger’s girlfriend (taken over by the vampire, supposed to be cured, eventually, but was instead killed by the group) kept trying to warn 'em away. No dice.

I even, point blank, told the paladin’s player that I REALLY didn’t want them to do it so soon- so she tried to convince them to not do it (in character, she was sort of my “spy” in the group). Did that stop 'em? Hell no.

At that point, I just said, “Fuck it”.

They went charging down into the crypts. They killed a few of the minions- I was, at this point, still maintaining a faint hope that they’d get the hint when even the minions almost killed them. Nope, of course not- Let’s charge in there! Ignore the fact that we can’t even hurt him, since he’s immune to the weapons we’ve got!


The vampire fucking slaughtered them. In something like three turns. Without breaking a sweat. I allowed the paladin to take her own life, so that she wouldn’t be turned. The rest became minions.

That was the end of THAT game. sigh