Page 1365 - Mob-able Cause

16th Apr 2020, 6:00 AM in Guest Arc: Equestria Girls
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Mob-able Cause
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 16th Apr 2020, 6:00 AM edit delete
Author: GreatDinn

Guest Author’s Note: “In my experience, a DM’s levels of ominous are never entirely in their control. They can certainly crank it up, but the vast majority of that level of ominous just comes from the fact that they have more information than the players (most of the time.) After all, this is the hobby where a simple question: “Are you sure?” can bring up some massive amounts of dread.

A DM just has to be careful to not get drunk on that power. Repeatedly. Basically every session. Especially if the campaign has some sort of overarching mystery, where the DM can just keep revealing stuff that keeps the players constantly on their toes.

I don't have a problem. You have a problem."


Doug 16th Apr 2020, 6:40 AM edit delete reply
Or in my campaign- “You don’t have a problem. You have problems. Plural.”
Guest 16th Apr 2020, 7:00 AM edit delete reply
The weird part is when I have people commenting on how ominous I'm being when I wasn't actually trying to be ominous. It's just, you know, sometimes you gotta phrase stuff in a certain way that allows for things to pan out in unexpected directions. Because players. Which makes it sound like you're trying to say "actually no, but it'll be funnier if you try", because they expect you to know something they don't, when really you know nothing at all because by then the game is so far off the rails that you scrapped the next three sessions for materials to cobble this random-AF sidequest together so it'd all at least pretend to stay within the setting's framework as you'd established it up to that point. Which means you'll be pulling another three all-nighters to come up with new material for those next sessions when (or if) they do come around, when you already know you'll end up scrapping them for parts to feed yet another random lark the party chased out into the literal middle of nowhere, planar-ly speaking.

It all looks planned from the other side of the GM screen. But my goodness no, it really is not.
ANW 16th Apr 2020, 7:01 AM edit delete reply
*List Time*
The number of ways the DM can say "Are you sure?"
In a 'that may not be a good idea way.'
MechaDitz 16th Apr 2020, 7:11 AM edit delete reply
"What was your max hp again?"
Composer99 16th Apr 2020, 9:01 AM edit delete reply
Reminds me of

Also, this brings up another good one:
"Uh, wow."
zimmerwald1915 16th Apr 2020, 9:15 PM edit delete reply
Darths and Droids has played that joke a number of times. Earliest here:
BackSet 16th Apr 2020, 7:16 AM edit delete reply
Roll perception.
What are your saving throws again?
Please tell me your armor class.
You can't be serious.
Hold on, think about this first.
Guest 16th Apr 2020, 7:27 AM edit delete reply
"Are you sure?" -> said while picking out multiple D12s from the dice bowl

A pause, a blink, followed by "was that in-character?"

"Can you put that in a step-by-step list for me?" -> said while expecting them to, in the process of thinking through it cause and effect, realize at some point that the plan relies on far too many uncontrolled variables for a setting where prophecy and divine intervention are common occurrences

Re-confirm the question by including problem details, such as "you want to hit the giant, heavily armored troll with your sword?"

Pause as if to think, open the NPC binder and flip to a random page, wait for a second, then say "... technically." Regardless of what the actual question was.

Have the party's pet NPC say they aren't being paid enough to die. Regardless of how much they're actually being paid.

If it's a politics thing and there's an established 'jerkwad rival' NPC nearby, have someone roll a spot check. If it's 10 or above, the jerkwad notices what they're up to and smiles especially evilly. If its 9 or lower, the party sees nothing, except now they're paranoid and double-checking their scheme for loopholes.

"The wizard gives you a funny look, as if you were an illusion and he's attempting to disbelieve."

"It's hard to tell, but the giant angry demon seems disappointed somehow."

"You'll need to make a reflex save for that one."

"Just roll a D20. We'll decide what for after."

"[Character McPCname] experiences a brief moment of perfect clarity, as if the hand of the divine brushed against her/his mind and revealed the myriad possibilities contained in this one moment, asking her/him to choose, and choose wisely."
FanOfMostEverything 16th Apr 2020, 8:53 AM edit delete reply
Ooh, I'm going to have to use the skeptical wizard. "You are either a very well-programmed illusion or a very foolish person."

And one of my favorites is "That will definitely work. For now." Followed a session or two later with "Hey, remember that time you all...?"
Warlock 17th Apr 2020, 8:04 PM edit delete reply
There's always a few repeats, but one of the more exotic ones came from an Oriental Adventures game. After critting on a fireball, I pointed out to my player the damage, plus, the AoE effect. Of course, being inside a several-story building, with their target up on a higher floor, I had to ask a very simple question.

"Who remembers what Japanese walls are made of?"

Turns out, paper is *very* combustible.
Norgarth 16th Apr 2020, 11:12 AM edit delete reply
DM: "You do _what_?!?
aylatrigger 16th Apr 2020, 11:52 AM edit delete reply
"This will kill you if it works."
albedoequals1 16th Apr 2020, 11:52 AM edit delete reply
Some of my favorites:
"Please show me your exact route"
"Do you say that out loud?"
"Please describe your method."
"Are you planning to roll diplomacy or bluff?"

And the classic:
"You can certainly try."
Scissors Rock Paper 16th Apr 2020, 9:10 PM edit delete reply
"Can't wait to see if this works."

"Of course you do."

*crumbles a piece of paper and tosses it over shoulder*

*rolls dice*


Use one or use them all. Doesn't matter to the players.
Jehan Criec 17th Apr 2020, 6:29 AM edit delete reply
My party have gotten particularly wary of me drawling the word "Excellent". Especially cause I use when things are about to go one extreme or the other.... And they never can tell which.
Wulfraed 17th Apr 2020, 8:45 AM edit delete reply
Well... I've mentioned the incident in the past... AD&D session...

GM (to the one party member with a chance to hit that round): Are you going to attack the dragon that just breathed on party, or the one that is getting ready to breath on the party.

Implication -- you better attack the second as you might abort its attack.

PC action: Attack the one that already attacked and was in recovery phase.

Party response: Noooooooo!!!!
MechaDitz 16th Apr 2020, 7:06 AM edit delete reply
On the other hand, a confident enough reply can turn the dynamic on it's head as the GM wonders what shenanigans the players are planning this time
Winged Cat 16th Apr 2020, 2:32 PM edit delete reply
Winged Cat
One way I deal with this is by revealing critical facts, that only one PC would know (they're the only one in position to see, they're the only one with the background to make the vital connection, et cetera), to just that one player and let them reveal it in-character. How well they do so helps determine how well the party can deal with the situation...and if the player parcels out the info slowly, they can seem to be the ominous one.
Story Time 17th Apr 2020, 2:09 PM edit delete reply
Well, let's return the question to everyone... Any story about the DM/GM being very ominous?
Digo 18th Apr 2020, 5:09 AM edit delete reply
I've been a GM long enough that I know that kind of power. So I find that I tend to take a bit of wind out of another GM's sails when they do that to me and I'm like, "Neat" in a very casual manner. And again, it is more reaction than deliberate because I know both sides of the screen. It isn't that I'm not enjoying the ominous tone. I do love it. I just also enjoy making the GM wonder why I'm so darn casual about this. As of I got a plan they're not aware of.

Heh... maybe maybe not. I'm not great at making long term plans as a PC. XD
Scissors Rock Paper 18th Apr 2020, 5:28 AM edit delete reply
Last GM I had wasn't very happy that I took notes. If anything even slightly inconsistent came up, I convinced the party to investigate. Getting plot critical clues through inference was not how it was supposed to go down.