View Full Version : Players who threaten the GM's game

5 August 2002, 09:30 AM
Hey folks-

i've run into an interesting turn in my current group of 5 years... the politics have always been a force in our group of friends, but now my players are using the game as an excuse for politics. What i mean by politics is- we have 3 alpha wolf personalities in our group of friends. In most respects, we trade off the leadership position; Person A is usually the Movie/Party instigator, Person B is usually the Computer instigator (games, trouble shooting, etc.), etc. while the others take a back seat or whatever.

However, in RPG- i've been the GM for a long time. I've had an open policy that "if you think you can do better, then GM for a turn or two". Our group is governed by Group Vote. Other players have GMed before, but all have decided to go back to me. I'm usually the moderator- a fair and objective opinion. Most of my friends come to me when they need a conselor or listener...

but in the game, a player who was dissatisfied with a GM ruling said to me in game session in front of everyone "Well, we could just leave and NAME [The GM] would have nothing to do on Sundays."

I quipped back "I always have something to do, I just prioritize RPG for you guys. It wouldn't matter much to me if we stopped, i'd free up about 15 hours a week."

Now, i'm a fella who has GMed for 10 years. I have no problem with someone else as a GM (i'm a player who inadvertantly intimidates anyone in my group since I've been the GM for so long that I've suggested I not play for a 'new gm' but the others have quashed this idea). I even play in another group in a differnent town. I've pretty much figured out how I am handling this turn in my RPG group.

However, I'm interested in other GMs' stories. Has group politics ever threatened your game? How have you handled your problems? Is there a better way to handle my situation?

5 August 2002, 10:15 AM
I had a player who tried this trick on me a couple of times. When I would make a ruling he didn't like, or the story wasn't going the way he'd planned, he would threaten to leave, often in the middle of the game. In the off hours, he often liked to talk about how the players really held all the power, because without them, there would be no game, etc. This player was chronically difficult to begin with; i.e. demanding characters, brought a lot of personal issues into the game, browbeat other players, and so on and so forth. (I think it's an archetype. Has anyone else experienced this type of player?)

I made a conscious decision a long time ago not to be manipulated by players like these. I roleplay to have fun, not to make up for power issues in other aspects of my life -- nor do I think much of that kind of behavior in others. If a player feels he's holding all the cards by virtue of his playing / not playing, he's seriously mistaken. GMing takes a lot of time and work, and if it gets to a point where it's no longer fun or personal politics become unpleasant -- I'll gladly find something else to do.

If they think I'm going to run after them, begging to spend hours and days coming up with the means to entertain them every week, they've got another think coming. Any player who tries the "well, if I don't like it, I'll just leave" tactic with me will find me pointing helpfully to the door.

I've been lucky enough not to have to deal with this too often (and I've been doing this for over fifteen years -- yikes), but most of the time I've stuck to my guns and continued to do things as I see fit. (It helps that I'm the only GM who will really do anything; without me, our group would totally die off roleplaying-wise.)

If an issue like this crops up in a game, and things turn ugly, more often than not I will just bow out or quit. I used to try to stick with it -- but I am too old and take my fun too seriously (if you know what I mean) to spend a lot of time on drama and BS. I roleplay to have a good time, not to get annoyed by petty disputes. There have been times, however, when ducking the issue really isn't an option, and at times like those I've just done my best to appease everyone and move on with the story. The trick is doing it without looking like a pushover.

I'm sorry to hear you have a group of players who lack maturity. I'd like to say they'll grow out of it. Sadly, I don't have too much evidence to back up that theory.

Lord Diggori
5 August 2002, 03:02 PM
Thankfully politics haven't entered into our hobby that much. Our group maintains a decent balance of power with diversity.

3 of the 5 regular players are DMs of different game systems. I do D&D and SW, another does Alternity and Champions, the third does Wheel of time. We usually have two DM's run per session so most get to see both sides of the screen weekly.

The only inequality comes in when we compare GM skill. One of us has difficulty being assertive and improvizational which lowers the quality of his game and leads to his insecurity as a player too. He volunteers to run the least and the non-GM players dont seem to mind that much. So for now everything is cool.

Another factor is that everyone knows they're expendable. We live in a college town so the player to GM ratio is high. When a friend took off a month and a half to paln his wedding we had maybe replacement to re-fortify the party.

Vanger Chevane
5 August 2002, 03:11 PM
dgswensen pretty much has it right. The idea if RPG's, or any game for that matter, is to have fun. The GM has to have as much fun running the game as the players do playing, or the whole game suffers.

I've been GMing for 15+ years myself, playing for over 2 decades.

A player who insists they can control the GM is blatantly mistaken. As the GM you are the Creator of the Universe.

I've actually yelled at one player when he whined about the very detailed explanation I gave hum over a ruling he didn't like "I am God here. I can be a Benevolent or Sadistic God, depending on how you behave with my creation.

Fortunately, the rest of the players who liked what I was giving them and told him to cool it or begone.

One of the tactics I've used is to make them the Group Commander. Make them do the paperwork, & deal with the hassles of being in charge. They have to control their unruly subordinates, & get chewed out and/or bad reviews for the mistakes of their people.

They quickly learn that being in charge isn't all about the power, or the cakewalk they thought it is. There's a huge amount of responsibility that comes along with the power. First and foremost is not abusing what you've been given, or it will be taken away from you.

Only twice have I resigned GMing due to a personality conflict with a player. In one the same player drove the new GM & most of the players nuts & got booted. The other I made a PC with the specific intent of driving the offender insane. Worked pretty well, but is a bit sadistic...

Hopefully the rest of the group will get the hint they have a say in what's going on & some responsibility if one or two players get consistently out-of-hand.

Best of luck.

Nova Spice
5 August 2002, 07:29 PM
I think maturity has a lot to do with it as well. dgswensen hit the nail on the head. By the sound of it, this player seems kinda selfish and if he thinks you are his "entertainment" provider, he's worse off than I can imagine! 8o

I've dealt with my fair share of problems for the past couple of years of GMing. (By the way, after hearing that some of you have been GMing for fifteen to twenty years, I know that I can hardly call myself a veteran GM!)

Just recently, two of my PCs were creating their level two characters for the NJO. One of the PCs (one I've had difficulty with in the past) decided to roll for his vitality while I wasn't looking. He rolled a ten (the max for a Jedi Guardian) and informed me of it. Now, I'm one of those GMs that has seen my own PCs cheat before, so I told this PC to re-roll it in front of me. He was so livid, I thought I was going to actually come to physical harm (actually I know I can take him with ease :) ). The other PC decided he didn't want to enter this argument and just read one of my supplements through the following ordeal.
As my PC yelled, slammed doors, and even belittled me, I silently gave him the vitality with him not knowing it. I was growing weary of his behavior, as was my other PC.
After thirty minutes of his selfish charade, he snatched his character sheet up in anger and happened to glance at the vitality. I think that was my own reward, showing this belligerent, selfish person that I was better than him. My other PC seemed to enjoy it as well.
And now, he knows that he owes me one and if he ever decides to throw a tantrum again, he's going to be doing something else for entertainment.

Sometimes you have to take care of the problem by being more mature than your PC. Your other PCs will respect you for it and you'll usually take great joy in making the PC look like a fool. :p :D

That's just a scenario from my own experience and may not be the right method of handling your problem. I just thought I'd share an alternative tactic of dealing with problematic PCs.

Best of luck Ravager!

Tony J Case, Super Genius
5 August 2002, 08:55 PM
Wow - my first gut reaction as a GM of 12+ years is "Sorry to see you go. Dont let the door slam you in the ass as you leave."

However, when you get right down to it, he is wrong and you are wrong. Without players there is no game. Without a GM there is no game. Both are just as important as the other, and both are required for a good time. It's a symbiotic relationship.

Me, I'd tell him to relax and just play the game. In the end, it's not like it's a cure for cancer or something. It's just a bunch of funny shaped dice and a sheet of paper with all kinds of numbers on it. It's certanly not worth getting worked up over.

5 August 2002, 10:44 PM
Originally posted by Ravager_of_worlds
but in the game, a player who was dissatisfied with a GM ruling said to me in game session in front of everyone "Well, we could just leave and NAME [The GM] would have nothing to do on Sundays."

Is this a friend? I think I would be mildly offended too.

Originally posted by Ravager_of_worlds
I quipped back "I always have something to do, I just prioritize RPG for you guys. It wouldn't matter much to me if we stopped, i'd free up about 15 hours a week."

You are too kind. I would have told him to put his money where his mouth was, and let anyone else know that they were free to go at anytime. Any thing else out of his mouth other than "I'm sorry" or "I was only kidding", would have been met with "Please leave, now".

It is a shame that sometimes players don't understand that whining to a force that can change weather, add extra enemies, turn regular arrows into poison arrows, create escape pod malfunctions......and all sorts of bad things are more than likely to now appear before the players as some form of in game retaliation, usually in a very big way. You do not argue with the GM, especially on a ruling. Directly discrediting a GM and threatening to take the game away is something that I have never experienced, and if I did it would only be once. I think I would find someone to replace that rotten apple if he got sour again. You shouldn't have to put up with that kind of thing a second time.

6 August 2002, 03:36 AM
It certainly does seem to be an archetype - in every group I have gamed with there has always been one person like this.

In my experience - both as GM and PC - I have found that these kinds of players will eventually fall by the wayside. The key to them being 'got rid of' is to aim your adventures to the other PCs - I've found that these types generally will play some kind of killing machine character, so easing up on the death and destruction will bore them into finding an alternative activity (perhaps freebasing? :D ).

Of course, if the rest of your party are into lots of action, your hands are tied. But it would still be possible to focus on the others to some extent.

As far as cheating goes - I know it's petty, but don't forget the GM has the BEST opportunities to cheat back! :p

Jim Williams
6 August 2002, 04:55 AM
I've been fortunate that I haven't had to deal with a lot of interpersonal crap when GMing. my players have always been my good friends. They come and go with new players entering my game, but they are always my good friends. I can see where roleplaying can set up personality/ego conflicts, and like all conflicts you have to take steps to minimize the damage and resolve the dispute. I for one am way to much of a jerk to be a player, so I GM and get great reviews. If I had a player that also wanted things to go his way hmmmm....I'd have a conflict to iron out.

It's funny, I do play a Jedi on the side when one of my players wants to GM for me. We have a great time. My wife's character hates him. All of our conflicts are character-involved and pretty intense in our group.

In the end, we all agreed a long time ago we were roleplaying to tell a group story and nothing more. All suffering is with the goal of developing the story. I kill no character until the player requests it UNLESS they do something stupid. Usually lots of hints before it comes to that.

And like other GMs, I rest easy knowing that (except for a recent addition) no one in the group would ever want to GM a campaign.

6 August 2002, 08:01 AM
I'm sorry to hear you have a group of players who lack maturity. I'd like to say they'll grow out of it. Sadly, I don't have too much evidence to back up that theory. originally posted by dgswensen

Well, my group isn't just the 4 of us... it's in the range of 7-8 now. I've had to change the story to reflect the number of players in the group and things are taking longer than they otherwise might with just 4 people. But generally speaking, the person who 'threatened' the game isn't a real critical thinker and while this person is 22 years of age, the maturity level is somewhere still in high school. I love all my friends to death, but sometimes i can only tolerate so much.

Thanks to all the people who responded. I'm glad to know that my actions were in the moderate- I remember a thread by Nova Spice regarding a similar topic and I could see where my group had been going. Your thread had helped me to recognize a pattern i had been ignoring. So, my present situation is the result of considerable damage control on my part for the last 3 months.

Nova Spice
6 August 2002, 08:36 AM
Well, I'm glad I could help in anyway possible Ravager. I remember that thread very well and if it wasn't for other members of the Holonet and their advice, it could have escalated to a level that would have torn our group apart.

I hope you are able to deal with this problem because I can sympathize with PC difficulties. Keep up with minimizing the damage; its the best way to go IMO. ;)

And if the PC becomes too much of a burden for you and the group, boot him. You've got 7-8 PCs, thats more than enough. Losing one, especially a trouble maker, probably would help the game.

Anyway, good luck! :D

6 August 2002, 10:31 AM
I dont think ive ever had this problem Ravager ,and this is why .(i think) #1the gm is always right, and if Im not we'll discuss post game cuz thats when votes on rule changes and the like are discussed. #2 to please trust me. if i realy wanted to kill you that isnt a problem i.e 5 stormies become 20,more ships arrive etc..usualy if they face more than they can handle its for plot purposes .i.e.theyre supposed to be captured, or they need to use the back entrance ,whatever. #3cheating will get you kicked even if were in the middle of battle. he gets killed next round or if hes integral to the plot he becomes a major npc. true the gm needs players but hes only 1 and i assume you have at least 3 players i honestly like smaller parties you can get to" 'know"those characters better.(right now i have three and 1 pending)so i would warn this player once and then if he kept it up kindly ask him to find another past time on sunday! hope this helps ya and good luck

6 August 2002, 03:23 PM
I feel I should clarify, but for me, my attitude has never been "I AM GOD HERE," but rather, "I spend a lot of time and effort every week to entertain you people -- and I don't feel I need to take a lot of grief for essentially doing something fun for YOU."

Sure, I get a lot of fun out of GMing, but players don't have to work nearly as hard for their fun as I do. They pretty much just have to show up. I'm the one who puts in all the monkey-work. And so the amount of guff that I will take from the players is pretty low.

I try very hard to avoid the "my word is law" attitude, because I find that that brings ego into the equation -- a lot of gamers I know have, shall we say, "issues" with authority, and so putting any notion of authority out in front of them (no matter how totally inconsequential) just drives them crazy. It's been my experience that when personal egos get involved at the gaming table, trouble and hurt feelings are usually not far behind.

Vanger Chevane
6 August 2002, 03:26 PM
Nova, don't worry about comparing how long you've been GM'ing versus anyone else.

I was incredibly fortunate when I started running games, and later on as well, to be in groups with some excellent GM's. I learned quite a bit from them, and I hope they did the same.

These forums are an excellent place to recreate that kind of atmosphere whitout having to be face-to-face. Topics like this allow us to share experience an ideas, without having to worry about who's been doing what for how long.

I've had some excellent ideas and questions handed to me by newbie players. It's best not to pre-judge someone's input by some sort (or lack) of status.

dgswensen I agree. I find it better to work with the players if possible. Sometimes they've come up with ideas for plot twists, or simply to enhance their characters that've led to a much better game than I'd originally had planned. I'm not fond of having to smash someone over the head with the "GM Scepter", but on occasion it's the best solution available at the time.

IMHO it's akin to nuking someone, a last resort.

6 August 2002, 06:27 PM
I would just ditch them. In fact I am having this problem now. I have a player who complains that his character isn't being run how he likes. WEll I had another freind run him and we had this much to go off of for a personality description: COCKY! He also hardly shows up and says,"I'm not as interested in the game as everybody else".
I pretty much told him he can't be a GM because his adventures would um, to put it nicely stink. Now he says he might not have time to show up for any adventures. We havwe had a totall of 3!

6 August 2002, 09:46 PM
You know, I've never had this problem.

There was this guy called James Elmslie (not to be mistaken for this other James I roleplay with who is frankly quite cool) and no-one liked his games as the GM (It was a live Vampire the Masquerade game) and he ended up leaving because of it. He was a total flake, but ultimately, people just got on. Sure, he had damaged the game seriously for me when I took over, but in the end, everyone is able to just deal and get on with it (except for him, who sulked for a good while)

Nothing beats the crap than a game played by a bunch of people who GM games themselves.

7 August 2002, 09:58 AM
Well I've been GM for a number of years, and have had a few players like this.

But my #1 rule during play is do not argue with my decisions during play.
If you have a problem with it speak with me after the game and maybe in the future I may rule differently depending on how the other players feel.

I had one player that just kept insisting on arguing during one game. I tried to just move on but he was starting to annoy the other players.
So I just packed up my stuff and said ok we are done for today.
The rest of the players got pissed because he ruined the game for the day. I discussed the issue everyone ended up agreeing I made the right choice and then expected me to start the game again that day.
But I didn't I just reminded them of my rule not to argue until after the session is over. Since the session was over I discussed the problem and now we were done for the day, See you all next time.

I only had to do this once after that the player stopped arguing with me, because the reality is they want to play just as much as the GM does or they wouldn't sacrifice their freetime to do so. After that any new players were told even by other players do not argue with him.

Another time I just killed the character on the spot in a DND game.
"The sky darkens you here the rumbling of thunder."
"yeah but blah blbah blah"
"A huge bolt of lightning lights up the sky"
"blah blah balh"
"Another bolt of lightning strikes the ground a few feet from the party"
"balah blah balh"
"A third bolt strikes Maltor, (roll a d20) Maltor is disentegrated in a tiny pile of ashes. A gust of wind from the north scatters the ashes."
"this sucks I'm out of here"

May have been a bit drastic but the quality of our game increased after this player was gone.

12 August 2002, 03:54 PM
My problem isnt with a Player.... It's with the GM for our Group... he does all these things making HUGE plans for gaming sessions and then the day we are supposed to play, which he plans the week before, he decides that he is gonna call it off 2 hours before all of us head over... theres 6 of us not including him and its the fifth time he has ditched us all in the last two months... most of us are really getting fed up and are fairly ready to quit mainly because he's been doing it so much... and its not even really for anything important... if it was none of us would care but its usually to catch a movie or he just decides not to play... I've Been asked by two of the other players to take over because its getting very old. i think i will but am not sure if i should continue with the current campeign... which is only 1 session in or just scrap the characters and story and start from scratch.


12 August 2002, 04:14 PM
If I were you, I'd start a new campaign. I personally find that I have dificulty in reconcilling someone elses campaign into my own. There are differences in the way that people GM and create characters (house rules etc) which can make that transition less than perfect. I don't like accepting other peoples characters from a game which someone else was running, and to date, I have never done so.

This does have its advantages; I know everything that has ever happened to that character, I know the rate at which it has been advancing, and I know that it isn't going to throw me any curve balls.

I also know that it hasn't been accumulating Character points at a rate which I would never allow in a game I ran. some GM's like to give them out like water, and some don't. I don't.

Now you're only one session in, so not all of this applies to you, but there should be enough to consider based on character concepts, character creation, and other minor things which may make you uncomfortable with those characters. If you're still unsure then ask your group what they want to do, explaining both sides of the coin to them.

12 August 2002, 05:22 PM
thanks for the advice,
the three main characters ill be gming were ones that i helped the players make for a campeign about a year back... we've been through a full campeign and just the first session with the new one so i know pretty much the rate that they advanced at... plus the guy who was GMing us i've been roleplaying with now for probably about 8 years and our styles are very close... plus it helps that i help him with plots! so it wouldnt be that much of a jump to continue with it because i pretty much know whats gonna happen anyway. but ill deffinately think some more about it... was thinking about possibly doing a sort or crime sindicate campeign, were the characters were either part of one or are hired by one not sure yet though.

13 August 2002, 07:43 AM
Interesting situation, JediStarWind -

that would really bite, the GM flaking out on you. Maybe he's been GMing for too long? Maybe he doesn't find it fun anymore?

of course, when the GM flakes out, there isn't anything else a player can really do than just game... themselves... which would seem like what i was originally 'griping' about. It depends on the situation.

Frankly, the GM has a responsibility to monitor him/herself closely, since the players look to the GM for stability and a GM should be in it for a long haul if needed (which frequently it is, at least in my groups).

28 August 2002, 09:21 PM
Welp, rather than start a new thread that's about basically the same thing, I'll ask here.

We play in two different groups, alternating GMs. This player plays in both groups, and no matter who the GM is, he argues. Constantly. Nonstop. He thinks he knows more about physics and psychology and military tactics and EVERYTHING. You can't explain to him that he's wrong, or where the flaw in his idea is. He's always right, in his own mind. An example was the party was in a small, enclosed room with some simple Imperial troopers, and he wanted to use a thermal on them. We told him that the area was too small and he'd kill us, too, even if he threw it, and he argued. I've snapped and demanded he shut up before, as well as everyone else he pulls into the arguement with him, but it's gotten to where that's not enough.

I don't want to lose him from the group, because his character, though annoying, is funnier than . But the fact is, all of us who GM are getting sick of him doing this crap. One GM sorta lets it slide, one GM is talking about subtracting 5 character points from the player for every time we have to say "shut up."

As for me, I'm not sure what to do. I'm thinking about saying "A stormtrooper has just come around the corner and shot you. Congratulations, you're dead. Don't even bother rolling strength. Now, if you want to live, you can shut up and spend X character points, and you'll only be wounded."

I don't want to go to that limit, or completely kill him off like imrtl said (though that's a damned funny idea), but I'm at the end of my rope.
Does anyone else have another solution, a better solution? This crap has to stop; it's making the games take way longer than they should. As an example is that we have seriously been held up for at least 15 minutes once because of his argueing, maybe longer than that, but 15 was what I observed on my watch. Help us end this madness, please.

28 August 2002, 11:11 PM
One GM sorta lets it slide, one GM is talking about subtracting 5 character points from the player for every time we have to say "shut up."

We did something similar. One guy in our group kept whining, and for everytime he whined, he lost character points. In the end, he never got any character points for three or four sessions. This led to more whining. It was solved in an out of game discussion.

By the power of being in charge of everything in the game, the GM ruled:

If the person is making everyone angry with all the whining and complaining (and it is not in character), the person has one more chance to fly right, or the whole game is over. The whole game is over.....no more. Bye bye everyone.

Yes it sounds harsh, but it worked. As much as it would have bad to have had to find another game, I think it is still better than going to several sessions of whining instead of gaming.

You may not want to be this drastic, but if everyone is tired of listening to Grand Admiral Thrawn (Your physics, psychology, and military tactics guru.....how is he with art? :D), you may just have to say good bye and play somewhere else. Start over fresh without the Admiral's mouth ruining the game.

28 August 2002, 11:41 PM
Now, now, let's not insult Thrawn. He at least had some class; this player doesn't.

That is a little more drastic than I'd like to be, but I'll definitely keep it in mind as a last-ditch option. He's threatened to up and leave the group if his precious Ewok should die, and I'd rather kill off the Ewok than risk losing the entire group, though I don't really want to go there, either...yet.

Maybe it's a good thing that I created a Sith character for just such on occassion. Anyone here like Kentucky Fried Ewok?

And for the record, I'm afraid to even mention art in the game when he's present. ;)

29 August 2002, 12:08 AM
Maybe it's a good thing that I created a Sith character for just such on occassion. Anyone here like Kentucky Fried Ewok?

You could do it this way, but there is no challenge in it, nor is it really fun. Sure you could have a Sith come in there and beat him down, or you could just do the blaster shot to the chest with no dodge mixed with the ultimatum of shaping up and putting forth cp for "'wounded status".

Either way, he has no real say in what happens. How about giving him a chance to save himself, or better yet, he must rely on the other players to save him?

What you need is a neurotoxin. Have someone slip it into his food, drink, or whenever he enters an establishment, have someone walk up and spill a drink on him. Now he is poisoned. The effects of the poison are obvious after only a few minutes. He is sick, and getting worse. He must think fast in order to save his life. Watch him panic. Watch him ask for help.....and possibly have his friends tell him that he is on his own. He will need them in order to make it to a facility that can treat him. This is how you destroy someone......and it is fun to watch if they think they have all the answers. This should also let him know that if the other players let him die, it is because they think it is for the good of the group. This is devastating....trust me.

He will have to think hard.....he will have to ask for help.....or he will die. This should humble him, and it should get him playing the game. Here he won't have the answers. He may not know why or who did this to him, but that is for you to make up. If he pisses his friends off, chances are he has enemies who are even more fed up with his "false Thrawness".

BTW, I was not trying to insult Thrawn. He does have class. If the player you are mentioning does not have class, then refer back to neurotoxins. They are just what the doctor ordered, and they cure the "rebel without a clue player" real quick.

29 August 2002, 07:10 AM
Ohhh that is cruel. But i like it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The only time i have had a major problem in this way, was in an AD&D game. And it was not jus 1 player. It was 3 of the 8 (unfortunatly it was also the 3 who showed up the most times and the other 5 showed up when thye could make it).

I got to a point in the game i had worked out something that would royally screw the entire party up majorlly, spent about 2 hours typing it up, going through all my books to iron out any problems with it, then at the end of the next gaming session we had, i showed it to the 'ring leader'. WIth a warning. Keep this crap up with challenging my rulings, since i have game mastered for 3 years longer than you have been playing, this will come up!. Several of the others took me out for a beer the following night, and begged me not to do that, and give him another chance. So i did. He still continued to be an ass, but IN CHARACTER gave me the perfect way to f*** him over. He used a unique spell i made, which acted as a 'PA' system does nowdays. He spoke to all sentients in a 150 mile radius of his 'keep' and sayd "this is ours. F*** with me at your peril!"
And this was with him fully knowing there was a greater wyrm Blue dragon with 2 adult kids living only 100 miles away. They opened up with their breaths (ALL) on him while he had the rest out adventuring, and fried the crud out of him, and 1 of the other problem children. Destroyed all his precious equipment, so if he did make a new character it would have not had squat.
He promptly acused me of having it out for him, and told me to get the hell out of there. Being we gamed around his (not the best of options, but the most economical for all), i left. 3 weeks later 5 of the gmers and me continued the campaign until i transfered. He knew and was pissed that we did so.

evan hansen
29 August 2002, 08:56 AM
Well, I, for one, am not a huge fan of vengeful tactics.

Has anyone tried to talk to him in a fashion other than yelling at him and telling him to shut up? By all means, he *should* shut up. But a lot of people -- especially people like that -- don't respond terribly well to getting a taste of their own medicine.

I would suggest sucking up all that seems right and just in this situation and take the higher road. Try an out-of-game conversation -- not even in a gaming situation, period -- with him to try and explain why his behavior disrupts the game. Be understanding and let him know that you realize that he sometimes objects to the way that things unfold but that you'd appreciate it if he would try to maintain his calm and not argue with every decision. Star Wars itself is not wholly technical and tactically sound -- not even close. It's about fun and adventure. Let him know that his insistence on dealing with the minute details of what he thinks is right is spoiling the game for everyone else.

If that doesn't work, you can try some harsher measures. But sometimes people just need a little explaining you know? They need to slow down a bit, etc... and view themselves outside the situation.

Just a suggestion. Best of luck. :-)

29 August 2002, 12:53 PM
There comes a time when talking politely to a know it all does no good. Sometimes you have to tell them to shut up......especially if the polite talk is ignored and the argueing persists into the game. Be nice until it is time to layeth the smacketh downeth. You don't have to argue long, because you can always start a game somewhere else.

evan hansen
30 August 2002, 09:16 AM
Well, unless I missed something, I'm thinking that a genuine conversation hasn't been tried yet in this scenario. If it has, obviously my advice should go the way of the dodo bird. What was described in the post is precisely the kind of thing that will have *zero* impact on an assclown like this guy they have in their group. I'm just saying that if the person hasn't *effectively* been made aware of his behavior and how people have problems with it, he'll never learn. In such circumstances, jumping the gun to killing a character kind of destroys the game, in my opinion.

Obviously, there are times when people are wholly and completely unreasonable. But when confronted with a lengthy, truthful, and honest conversation, most people come around.

30 August 2002, 09:46 AM
I'm agreed with evan hansen on his points about talking it out- usually people can be reasoned with (a mob cannot, since, technically, their collective IQs drop 10% for every 2 people).

Do i detect a few wrestling fans (ala Rock and Jericho)? Kudos to similar interests.

However, sometimes a person is such a jerk, so... unreasonable that they make life a pain and that can come out easily in the game. I try not to hang around people like that- it only furthers negative feelings and disrupts a generally happy mood. The hostility i sense in the above posts might suggest the fellow needs to be dropped on a simple basis- they bring people down. Instead of constructive criticism, this sounds like a wrecking ball who doesn't care for other people's feelings. Enough psychology though-

more stories folks?

30 August 2002, 12:53 PM
I know that I should not be speaking for Seghast or be guessing about what actually happened.........but I will try to put things as I see them happening from my own experience.

Talking to someone who does not listen usually goes in steps which escelate in force as they progress through a session. It usually does not start out with "Shut up", but kind of goes like this:

1) Hey, everyone, please stop argueing about this. We talked last about this last time and I thought this was resolved.

2) Alright, it looks like I have to stop the game for a few minutes guys. (motion to the initiator of hate and discontent) You, come with me. We need to talk about rules and common sense.

After a quick talk about not argueing in game, and reaching an agreement on how a player is supposed to behave and respect other players (if they wish to have a living character, I find this to be very important), we continue.

3) I already discussed this last time, and I just got done talking about not arguing with the rest of the players about MY rules. I don't want to hear it again.

4) Shut up!

5) Game is over. No experience. I am debating about running further sessions. I work full time and go to school full time. I want to GM not baby sit.

Talking nice to someone usually has no effect. I have reached up to number 4 myself, and I canceled the rest of the session. I gave experience to those who played in character and deserved it.
I have never had to go as far as number 5, but I have seen it done as a player. I do work full time and go to school full time, and I know that it is not a bluff of a GM to give up his game for his sanity when doing both of these things at the same time already along with making up sessions for others to play in.

I find that it is not just the one player who is the whole problem, but is the source of the problem. It is the other players too. They are all argueing. Sometimes it is best to try and remove the bad apple, but if the bad apple remains, the whole bunch just argues. That is the reason why I suggested starting over as a full out contingency after everything fails, and the reason why I suggested the neurotoxin to get rid of a bad apple, in order to try and keep the majority of your players from getting pissed off and leaving. I will talk to the person out of character later after the game if they are still in danger of having their character poisoned. If they don't shape up and keep interrupting the game, they will leave, or the game will soon come to a halt. I don't usually want people who act like that to necessarily leave my group mad, but just leave. This isn't always possible though.....but then again, he or she could have listened the first time as they tried to appeal their bogus case against my rulings the first time. I won't lose sleep over being mean if they were stubborn and mean first.

Sounds cruel, but my time is valuable. We can either play during a session, or there won't be a session for much longer if I am running it and argueing keeps on happening involving the same person(s) and situations. Anything can be contested or argued later out of game (no guarantees of a reversed ruling, but I will always listen). I like suggestions, but if YOU are GM, you need to be the policy setter and the ender of all fun time if that is what happens over and over again anyway. If they cannot play nicely, try to remove the problem and if that fails (they make another character and continue to argue), then play time is over. Everyone seems to be happier for it in the long run.

30 August 2002, 09:55 PM
I'm the GM Seghast is referring to, as to the one who wants to subtract cp's. We've tried to talk to our friend outside of the game, and he mearly said that I "make my decision without hearing his side", which is complete BS. I hear his side, and rule, yet he keeps up with it. s to calling off the game, I dont want to, since tomorrow we have a new guy starting, and I want to be able to at least let him have some fun. if it continues, I might try the Neurotoxin idea or maybe something worse. I can be real evil when i want to be, and It wont be pretty if I have to "step in" and solve this with one of my "ideas".