... the mage's octopus familiar...
And with this phrase alone you've managed to encapsulate why I love RPGs
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Posted 12 April 2015 - 10:14 AM
I have always run my world as an open world. Players were welcome to challenge harder creatures if they wished. i lay all the adventures out there for them to chose where to go and what to do. If they were headed to an adventure that would out match them I usually gave them plenty of in game warning about what they might face. I have played in a few worlds that were the same way too. You could choose to fight the demon lord at second level but we all knew what the outcome would likely be... We wisely chose not to fight it right now. On the other hand I have seen a fellow player critically critical a clearly superior monster and slay it with one strike so it is never out of the realm of possibility that the players can't win even in a heavily one-sided fight. Just totally shocked my dwarf and totally changed his attitude toward that freaky elf as it was all I could do to stay tanked against it and trade missing blows as I encouraged everyone to run. But tactical retreats were not uncommon, usually accompanied with strains of "Bravely we/he/she did run away..." by someone in the group. Especially when the party's spellcasters were low on spells.
Posted 13 April 2015 - 05:34 AM
[...] the rare moments where a tough fight for both sides kept a degree of tension and didn't devolve into just a grind of rolling dice and counting math.
On the other hand I have seen a fellow player critically critical a clearly superior monster
Posted 14 April 2015 - 12:42 PM
So I've actually got a couple of examples of this; One ended well, the other ended hilariously.
We're in a Warcraft RPG campaign right now and the party consists of; a Night Elf Runemaster (Monk equivalent), an Undead Necromancer (Me), and a Gnomish Tinker. We were exploring a dungeon to kill off some warlocks when we came across a room with a large magical skull on a pedestal and a massive black statue behind it, seated on a throne. My character, the necromancer, is insane so he doesn't look at things quite like the rest of the party does, and declared that he wanted to inspect the room rather than move on.
We approached and scanned the room for magic, the skull and the statue responded to the spell. My GM didn't realize that he'd told me the wrong school of magic when I scanned the skull (It was transmutation magic, but he told me evocation.) so I grabbed the skull. The skull being touched triggered the giant statue behind it to start moving. I put the skull back down, it kept moving, so we snatched the skull and booked it for the door. We managed to get out of sight before it broke free of the room and so it couldn't find us, and went back to it's resting position.
The second one, our party had split up (In character. We didn't meta-game our character's responses to the inciting incident to keep from splitting up) and our Gnomish tinkerer, who is riding a pimped out table golem by the by, comes across a barracks full of sleeping Trolls. He tries to coup de grâce the sleeping trolls, fails, and wakes the entire room. He tries to flee from the fight using his table golem, which has a max land speed of 40MPH - need I remind you that he's in a dungeon, not outside.
He manages to skill check his way around two corners before losing control and becoming a red smear on the wall. The table survived, though.
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