Right? Plot coupon, where you have to go around and collect a plot point from NPC’s before you can move to the next step in an rpg scenario. It’s one of Brett’s favorite things to do in tabletop role-playing game!

Random Encounter

Voicemail from Kyle on Deploying Lore

Email from Edwin Nagy 

You may get to this; I’m only part way through the episode.  One thing very much missing, in my mind, from the nostalgia trip to let’s pretend-land is the horrible arguments.  “I shot you.”  No, you missed.  I didn’t miss, my finger was pointed at you.  I ducked.  Many of our games ended in this, sometimes violently.  So we came up with rules.  As we add rules, we try to add a reality (not necessarily our reality, but some in-game reality).  As we add reality, we lose the willingness to talk about Kibbler sticks being run through hydrogenators.  There are no rules for that.  Some games or some GMs add bonus dice or inspiration or bennies to folks who do that.  Some story games actually require it and have some kind of cleverness voting mechanic rather than dice to see if the BS (meant in the best possible way) succeeds.  Most of what we play, however, comes down to a skill check and, e.g., you have advantage on the attack because the opponent is prone.  It’s hard to mix that with giving advantage because of something creative that was said—player skill v. character skill.  (Which one leads to more arguments and more fun?  It depends.  Can we do both?  Maybe.)

Speaking of rules, just a reminder for Brett that alternate ability skill checks is still discussed in the DMG on p. 239.  One of my favorite bits in there (although I just glanced at the rules for objects and realize it’s time for me to reread the rule book too.)

Also a thought on team games (https://official.nba.com/rule-no-3-players3-substitutes-and-coaches/). 

RULE NO 3: Players, Substitutes and Coaches

Section I—Team

  1. Each team shall consist of five players.  A player is disqualified from the game when he receives his sixth personal foul. No team may be reduced to less than five players. If a player in the game receives his sixth personal foul and all substitutes have already been dis-qualified, said player shall remain in the game and shall be charged with a personal and team foul. A technical foul also shall be assessed against his team. All subsequent personal fouls, including offensive fouls, shall be treated similarly. All players who have six or more personal fouls and remain in the game shall be treated similarly.
  2. In the event that there are only five eligible players remaining and one of these players is injured and must leave the game or is ejected, he must be replaced by the last player who was disqualified by reason of receiving six personal fouls.  Each subsequent requirement to replace an injured or ejected player will be treated in this inverse order. Any such re- entry into a game by a disqualified player shall be penalized by a technical foul.
  3. In the event that a player leaves the playing court while the ball is in play, play will continue until the next stoppage of play and the player will be replaced if he is not ready to return. No technical foul will be assessed, but the incident will be reviewed by the league office for a possible fine and/or suspension.
    1. EXCEPTION: Rule 10—Section XV

It is in the rules.  D&D goes out of its way to indicate that you can do what you want—solo, PvP, team, etc. Most adventures push for team play in order for the characters to succeed, but I would argue that is not the rules.  That said, I’m still trying to understand the whole argument.  

Cheers, and happy gaming!  


Email from Ed C. on skills

Greetings all. I have noticed in many RPG‘s skill checks are often either based off your ability scores or get a bonus based on your ability scores   just to make the system simple you could probably do something where you have non-weapon proficiencies it’s kind of like they did back in the ADD and instead of requiring a skill check you just do a appropriate ability check trying to roll under your stat perhaps even add in a type of system like pathfinder 2E has. Depending on on your level of proficiency you are limited in possibly how well you can succeed in it. This way a DM on the fly can make it a quick change the ability score just to fit the situation. A strength instead of dexterity for an escape artist check to get through some sticky webs. Just a thought.

Isaiah comments on Not So Supers

I appreciated the discussion about the challenges involved with sci fi games. I love hard science fiction, but I find that when I run a game for someone who is more knowledgeable about physics and technology, they might be confused about a story assumption I make that breaks real life rules. There was a time, in another group, that I dropped running harder sci fi and stuck to space opera so I could fill the gaps with “they invented a ___ that solves ____ problem.”

This experience affected me recently, running a game (Alternity, what else) where the party crashed on an asteroid that was under an induced spin (to simulate gravity inside it) and I was really agonizing about what that experience would be like and how to model the physics of trying to move across that surface (nobody invested in personal propulsion). These players really did not care, but my old group would have probably tried to teach me some physics instead of just bypassing the robot guards and accessing the compound.

My current players care very little about physics, engineering, or speculative technology, so aside from occasional explaining some aspect of computer technology (so many gamers are computer science people), they don’t seem bothered about what should be happening according to physics. It’s freeing for the story, but I do sometimes wonder if I am “getting it right.”

Die Roll

Next Episode

Subscribe on iOS or Android so you don’t miss our next episode about slow burn versus the hot start!






About the Author
The 'S' of Gaming and BS podcast. Besides producing and hosting the show, Sean enjoys long walks on the beach, running rpg's, and killing player...characters.