Started by Big J Money, December 01, 2008, 09:25:30 PM
QuoteI figured it would come across as a well-suited encounter if the ghost sought some kind of approval of that character's gritty resilience. Game terms, this meant the player rolled an intimidate check as their character was confronted with a verbal challenge from the ghost and acted out or said some words that could be seen as suitably tough and intimidating. If it sounded good to me, I'd grant a bonus to the roll.
Quote... with enough convincing can be led to see that maybe those seeking entry are here to preserve and protect the sanctity of the place.
Quote from: gsoylent on December 02, 2008, 03:45:00 AMTo me, it sounds like it was just a poorly written scenario.
Quote from: Ron Edwards on December 02, 2008, 07:58:36 AMFact: if you wanted the ghost befriend the characters and give them information, then have it befriend them and give them information as long as they aren't so stupid as to attack it outright. Don't make it contingent upon what a player will ("is supposed to" or "should obviously") do, and don't put in risks, like a possible fight with the ghost, that you as GM aren't willing to take.
Quote from: Ron Edwards on December 02, 2008, 07:58:36 AMHere's another point: in-fiction justifications or debate about any of this are not valid. What the ghost would or must do. (a) What the character would or should do. The player's talk about "his character" is one symptom of this common error. We're really talking about the people, you, him, and the others. (b) The question is whether you are able to fulfill the role of GM (DM in this case) without expectations of how the characters must react in order for play to proceed.
Quote from: Ron Edwards on December 02, 2008, 07:58:36 AMYou basically played the scenario in your head before play, and decided that it would be successful only if specific things happened. And by specific things, you meant that a given player would have his character behave and say particular things. Furthermore, although in the fiction the characters are being presented with a choice and some possible danger, in reality you had no intention whatsoever of this encounter going in any direction except for this particular way.
Quote from: Ron Edwards on December 02, 2008, 07:58:36 AMAnd you even decided beforehand which character would respond in a particular way.That's called railroading. I recognize it because I did it for years and years.
Quote from: Ron Edwards on December 02, 2008, 07:58:36 AM[...] I also must call out the vast majority of published adventures, particularly those which followed upon the publication of D&D3.0, as being the most unplayable railroading trash in role-playing history. By unplayable I do not mean cliched or not to my taste. I mean literally unplayable. No one wants their characters to be played by a GM. No one wants to have to play "guess what I'm thinking" in order for their characters to survive or merely to get to an important point.
QuoteUltimately, I think even the Skill Challenge rules as presented in the 4E material are woefully inadequate for satisfying play
Quote... he seems to come from the position that he is the only person who can understand his character and that's what makes him right. It's not because the rules give him the authority to be in control over his character, it's because he knows who this imaginary character is and what it is thinking. Like I said in my original post, this might seem like a silly thing for me to think, but this is the impression I get about this one recurring situation in our group.
QuoteWhen the group experiences dissonance of this kind, I think it's pretty much given that someone must say, "Look, I'm not talking about your character, I'm talking to you and about what you do."
Quote from: Big J Money on December 02, 2008, 10:17:47 PMHowever, I'd still like to ask the question, "Is railroading really always bad; can it not be considered a legitimate technique" because the way the encounters are designed in the published adventure still follow a basic railroad format.
QuoteOkay, here's my mental pitch for railroad play: the players get to play the heroic protagonists in a story with the crucial parts predetermined. They will face challenges and battles that allow them to make creative and tactical decisions regarding use of their heroic abilities.
QuoteSo I have to ask, are you sure? "Guess what I'm thinking" is a game. I fondly remember playing "Eye Spy" as a kid.
QuoteIs the use of railroading to establish hard plot and situation boundaries a roleplaying game breaker? I'm posing this question now in all seriousness because I will be at a crossroads soon where the published adventure ends and I must make a decision to radically change our play-style or stick with it. The players so far have seemed to enjoy themselves. I will definitely be bringing up the issue of the published adventure and railroading in general to their attention for feedback. Although I hesitate to use the word "railroad" because that could elicit negative responses even if there is disparity between us over the meaning.