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Blame the dice, not me!


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#1 BigJackBrass

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 03:30 AM

A random question for GMs: do you ever use dice to avoid awkward confrontations or situations in your game by treating the result as beyond your control? Or perhaps you've "punished" a player's behaviour by letting the dice take care of it while you remain blameless even when the outcome might be fatal for their character?
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#2 Hafwit 2.0

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 08:19 AM

I *mostly* practice saying yes or rolling the dice. So, when something has the potential to go ass over teakettle (as they say), I leave the outcome to the dice. That's pretty much the same as blaming them.


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#3 Hal

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 08:41 AM

I agree with that - as I tend not to run with a screen I tend to abide by the dice and swing the story as needed with narrative - just listen to Rolemaster :D I feel a system like that works well with the ever present shadow of death from a well aimed carrot from the a blind beggar :P

 

I would not normally use dice as a stick to make players do things - I have NPCs for that :P

 

Hal :hal:


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#4 BigJackBrass

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Posted 09 February 2015 - 01:04 PM

I've seen people use the "blame the dice" excuse, when they've deliberately put a character into a hugely difficult position, and it always felt about on par with the "It's what my character would do!" excuse.


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#5 riddles

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Posted 14 February 2015 - 07:17 PM

All I can say is, that after EotPT, it's  good thing I DON'T think you fudge the dice to go after characters!

 

It made a Paranoia game look tame!


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#6 Hafwit 2.0

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Posted 15 February 2015 - 05:40 AM

Can you give an example, BJB? I think I know what you mean, but I'm not sure.


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#7 Pencil-Monkey

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Posted 20 March 2015 - 03:45 AM


 


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#8 Hafwit 2.0

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Posted 21 March 2015 - 05:01 AM

He looks annoying, but I've used the tactic. 


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#9 Telemergion

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Posted 07 April 2015 - 03:03 PM

Technically I suppose I am rolling behind a visual obstruction but that's because my group plays online but can't let go of the feeling of rolling actual dice so we operate on the trust system. 

 

As for the original question, I don't usually pass the buck onto the dice as a punishment of any kind. If I think something really would come down to chance, such as how a rock tumbles down a hill or which character an enemy will attack when there's no benefit or reason to choose one over the other (from the monster's perspective), then I'll toss a dice to see what happens. If it's something the players are doing to themselves then it's on them to figure it out, or on my baddies to roll well on their perception checks to watch the players fail horribly.

 

Spoiler: I never roll well on perception checks.


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#10 Pencil-Monkey

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Posted 29 July 2015 - 09:24 AM


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#11 Hafwit 2.0

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Posted 21 August 2015 - 10:28 AM

"Tired of all your fuḿbles being critical? Get luck on your side with this weird old trick!"


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#12 wolfsnap

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Posted 26 August 2015 - 09:22 PM

I don't blame the dice. My players expect me to put them in awkward situations!


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#13 Alexis

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Posted 07 December 2015 - 02:01 AM

One way of getting around the "blame the dice" argument from the DM's perspective is to take the time to explain exactly why the dice are being rolled.  This problem used to come up with rolls in my game designed to solve some issue that wasn't exactly covered in the rules.  When I began detailing the die rolls and what each result would mean, then rolling the dice directly in sight of the players, this problem went away.

 

Sometimes, I will ask the players if a particular pattern of results seems fair; I've hardly ever had a player try to take advantage of that.  They want a good game as much as I do.


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#14 Slartibartfast

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Posted 15 December 2015 - 06:16 PM

When a GM I'm happy to use the dice to build tension but I don't think it fair to punish players with them. I usually roll in the open so all can see the results, however I don't always declare what the roll is for...


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