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46709 Posts in 5588 Topics by 13297 Members Latest Member: - Shane786 Most online today: 24 - most online ever: 429 (November 03, 2007, 04:35:43 AM)
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Author Topic: Frustrated GM  (Read 5088 times)
Moreno R.
Member

Posts: 547


« Reply #15 on: April 18, 2012, 04:17:55 PM »

Hi Paul!

I agree with Paul about "talking to the group":

Sorry, I meant "I agree with Filip" here.

(No matter how many times you look at the preview pane before posting, you always miss something....)
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Ciao,
Moreno.

(Excuse my errors, English is not my native language. I'm Italian.)
Nightwing
Member

Posts: 5


« Reply #16 on: April 18, 2012, 11:47:35 PM »

First, there is no my story. I'm not forcing players to follow a specific route. Mostly preparing a job to do, but as I leave this task to follow through in their actions.

They say that playing the sandbox is totally boring. They want a specific scenario in which they are mercenaries, with the fact that forcing unrealistic amount for missions carried out, although it counts more for the fact that they can reject the mission.

I would be happy if they were their other actions that were active, but they are not. They can sit and wait at the inn "until someone comes up and renting them for the appropriate amount." And they do nothing.

What other games you wrote? What games do you recommend? But already I see a problem, because they do not want to read the rules - the rules should be familiar with MG, but should not totally rely on them. Paradox.
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Filip Luszczyk
Member

Posts: 771

roll-player


« Reply #17 on: April 19, 2012, 04:51:08 AM »

Again, are you Polish? I think it's very relevant, as local play culture tends to heighten certain issues Moreno writes about, while making other parts not so problematic.
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Callan S.
Member

Posts: 4268


WWW
« Reply #18 on: April 19, 2012, 04:48:38 PM »

I would be happy if they were their other actions that were active, but they are not. They can sit and wait at the inn "until someone comes up and renting them for the appropriate amount." And they do nothing.
As I say, why not just keep offering more and more cash, going up by a thousand each time? Simply as an experiment?

In not doing that it sounds like you're trying to resist something yourself? Perhaps trying to maintain setting integrity, given your concern with 'the fact that forcing unrealistic amount for missions carried out'?

Again, I'll just say that to not try raising the pay over and over is ignoring atleast one line of advice.
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Mael
Member

Posts: 18


« Reply #19 on: April 21, 2012, 09:16:05 AM »

Hi Paul !

One thing strikes me from your last post :
But already I see a problem, because they do not want to read the rules - the rules should be familiar with MG, but should not totally rely on them. Paradox.

In my opinion, there is more than one paradox here.

1) only the GM should be familiar with the rules
That's a paradox on his own, because people can't play correctly any game (even Slapjack) if they don't know the rules.
I can see two possibilities :
  ? the rules of the games you are playing are too complicated for them, in that case you could try another game (more about that later)
  ? they REALLY don't want to know ANY rule, thus, as Filip said, they don't want to PLAY, just to hang out - in that case there is no hope, you should just try to find other players

2) GM can change the rules anytime he wants to (and obviously in your case, when players ask him to)
Rules are what creates the fun of any game - if someone can ignore them or change them during play, you're playing calvinball :)
For more about this, I can't give you a better advice than to read Ron's essays, starting with "System does matter", if you haven't already. It will probably help you to better understand why things CAN'T work that way.
You can find these articles here


Many good points have been made in the discussion so far, but reading the whole thing I still have the feeling that some information is missing.
I know by experience that being frustrated (as a player or as a GM) is really painful, but I don't think we can help you if we don't grab the context, and you're the only one that can talk about it.

Moreno asked you some questions you havenít really answered, and if you allow me I would like to add a few ones too.
Please, take your time to think about them carefully, and try to make detailed answers.
(I'm not assuming anything with these questions, just trying to learn more about your group)

- how long did you knew each other ?

- for how long do you play together ?

- for how long each of you plays RPG ?

- who first introduced RPG in your group ?

- did the way you plays (or GM) evolved with time ?

- did some of the players played RPG with other people than you ?
  - if so, did that happen before you play together, or is it still occurring ?

- is anyone in your group involved in videogaming, especially MMORPGs ?
  - if so, for how long, and at what frequency ?

- do you remember any game session that has been satisfying for you, even briefly ?
  - if so, can you describe what happened (in-game and between people) ?

- do you remember any game session that has been satisfying for any player, even briefly ?
  - if so, can you describe what happened (in-game and between people) ?

- do you sometimes talk together about RPG between sessions ?
  - if so, what about precisely ?

- how do you chose a RPG book ?
  - try to detail what interests you in these games, what you are excited about (setting, points of system, ...)

- what would be your description of a good RPG session ?
  - do you think that's compatible with your players expectations ?

Another questions (the last ones I promise), about the whole "players just want to have missions and get paid" thing.
Some of the games you mentioned earlier have other reward systems than money (Xp and character evolution at least).
Do the players enjoy this kind of thing (like getting cool powers, a better attack, ...), or are they REALLY just interested in money ? If so, what do they do with this money ?
Outside of the game, are they also into that "let's make some money" stuff ?


I'll end this with a point about players and rule knowledge.
I also know some players reluctant to read the rules (especially in English). What I did is to choose games with easy systems, so I can teach them to the players quickly, and that can be summarized on a single sheet for in-game reference. But that only works if players still want to learn the rules, without opening the book.

As an example, I recently tried InSpectres, and that's a really good choice for that matter : the rules are light, easy to understand and remember, and the book is well written (honestly, players should still try to read it ^^).
I see another advantage to mention this game here : the whole premise is about characters creating a Franchise (think Ghostbusters + start-up) and trying to keep it from bankrupt. To do that, they have to do jobs, that will get money to the Franchise.

Good points in regard of this topic :
- really easy system
- quick and fast, one session, one job (about 1-2 hours)
- the purpose of the game implies to make money
- rules are clear : if they don't want the job, fine, but they won't get paid
- creating a job is really easy, there is even a table to generate one randomly

Risks in regard of this topic :
- the purpose of the game implies the money is reinvested into the Franchise, so players can't really have a "mercenary" attitude
- the players have a huge narrative control : if they don't want to use it (for whatever reason, like if they really want you to drive the game), the whole thing is doomed
- in that game, you are pretty powerless as a GM, so you have to trust the players to "play by the rules" - if their only fun comes from stressing you, that game will only make things worse

Mael.
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.jayderyu
Registree

Posts: 1


« Reply #20 on: April 22, 2012, 01:47:41 AM »

Some good advice here. Especially examining the play style. Here is also a suggestion that crossed my mind.

Even if they want to be mercs. Stop giving missions. Turn it around. They have money, they have mercenary fame. They meet Mr contact. They don't make the deal. Then boom it was a trap. An enemy from their past mission comes back. The players can't turn down the story. It's not an option.

If they are armed then it starts with a fire fight. Then they need to discover who, what, when where and why to get this organization off there case. If they aren't armed for some reason. Gas them. Throw them in prison and have them do a break out over a series of sessions.

Stop giving the players a choice to turn down jobs. They don't want family background. That's fine. In there long search to discover who want's there heads. Start throwing in relationships.

Otherwise. Go with the other persons idea. Find out even if they want to play at all.
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