Page 1360 - Caper Toss

4th Apr 2020, 6:00 AM in Guest Arc: Equestria Girls
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Caper Toss
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 4th Apr 2020, 6:00 AM edit delete
Author: GreatDinn

Guest Author's Note: "I think anyone who has DM'ed has experienced that moment. The moment where everything goes so far off from what you expected that you just toss your notes aside, mentally or physically. It's a running gag in my Saturday group that 'Story is dead and we killed it.' One of the DMs/Players in said group had to give up on an official Star Wars module game one because it went so far off the rails that he had no more material in that book to pull from. We played more of that game, but it was extremely off the cuff (in a very, very, very good way.)

Story Time: Any stories of the moment you realized (as a player or DM) that things were going to go in an unexpected direction?"

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: February 20th.



MiqoRems 4th Apr 2020, 6:20 AM edit delete reply
It perhaps speaks volumes for the problems this group was having when the DMs reaction to "let's work together" is exasperation. :V
Scissors Rock Paper 4th Apr 2020, 6:36 AM edit delete reply
Session 1: I send a fleet of space pirates after my players for a "work for me and I'll let you go" kind of scenario. They escape because someone summoned an undead space kraken.
Session 2: Players land on an island ripe for exploration. They leave for parts unknown.
Session 3: A space dragon attacks the ship. They escaped through a portal to the plain of shadow.
Session 4: A new player joins and breaks the system making a pimp.

Yeah, I was never in control.
remial 4th Apr 2020, 8:45 AM edit delete reply
I was in a group where the GM threw a band of space pirates at us, lead by Don Karnage (from TaleSpin).

We hired them to be the backbone of the space police force we formed.

We also built a Ringworld to distract one of the groups of bad guys away from our search for the ancient super weapon. (He wouldn't let us make a Dyson Sphere, that was too unrealistic. And that was the only time he really had any control.)
Borg 4th Apr 2020, 9:16 AM edit delete reply
I hope then that your Ringworld had thrusters built in to compensate for its fundamental instability.

You wouldn't want it to be unrealistic.
BackSet 4th Apr 2020, 10:20 AM edit delete reply
Well, assuming they had time constraints a Dyson sphere would take much longer to build than a ring world.
you know that guy 4th Apr 2020, 9:38 PM edit delete reply
Dyson spheres require a high tech level, but ringworlds require an even higher tech level. So it's possible to have a civilization which can build Dyson spheres but can't build ringworlds.
Chakat Firepaw 17th Apr 2020, 7:13 AM edit delete reply
They probably mean a Dyson Shell rather than a Dyson Swarm. The former is not only harder to build than a ringworld, but also even less stable as it is not gravitationally bound to its primary at all.
rmsgrey 1st Mar 2021, 10:39 AM edit delete reply
A ringworld is more stable "vertically", but less stable "horizontally" than a Dyson shell. For the shell, anything inside the shell ignores the shell entirely until it gets close enough to hit it, so if you start with the star perfectly centered and stationary, it'll random walk out from the center (and things will be complicated by light-pressure tending to push the star back toward the center). Meanwhile, for the ring, anything out of the ring's plane will have a component of acceleration toward the ring-plane, and anything off-axis will have a radial component of acceleration toward the nearest point on the ring, so once the star gets nudged away from the central point, unless it moves strictly along the axis, it'll accelerate toward the ring.

So in terms of how long it'd take for a catastrophic failure of either system, the shell will last significantly longer than the ring since it simply has nothing stopping problems, while the ring's mechanics actively make problems worse.
Zengar 4th Apr 2020, 9:34 PM edit delete reply
Unfortunately I once did the math. A Larry Niven style (as opposed to a Halo style) ringworld is just as unrealistic. Even a minimal one a kilometer wide a meter thick and the density of water (for easy math) would take more mass than we've found in our solar system outside of the sun.

You could theoretically make one in the habitable zone of a red dwarf star (about 0.1 AU in radius) as long as you have some really light and strong handwavium for the hull and airwalls, and don't go overboard with mountains or oceans, but that's not what anyone things of when you say "ringworld"
tipulsar85 4th Apr 2020, 7:09 AM The illusion of control vs the illusion of choice edit delete reply
I tend to be more relaxed as a DM in D&D than as a Ref in Cyberpunk. Mostly because the goal of the Ref in Cyberpunk is to make sure the party doesn't kill each other due to backgrounds or if the party feels a little too OP, it's time to nerf by having really good head shots on the party. this is encouraged because hp is static in terms of growth. You either are fully healed, or you took enough damage to loose a limb. Head shots are double damage.
BackSet 4th Apr 2020, 7:10 AM edit delete reply
Let it go, Sunset. You're not getting that heist.
Scissors Rock Paper 4th Apr 2020, 8:39 AM edit delete reply
Is it just me or is Sunset obsessed with splitting the party?
hankroyd 4th Apr 2020, 8:43 AM edit delete reply
As a DM, I am way more surprised when things to the intented way than when they go off the rails...

Please tell me I'm not the only one ...
Guest 4th Apr 2020, 8:47 AM edit delete reply
The players had just chased off the changeling manipulating the economy of Manehatten, but he got away because his divination wizard friend had teleport. Without any clues left to follow, I thought they would go back to Canterlot to get more advice from Celestia. Instead, they said "Let's go to Griffonstone!" I had to ask where they got that idea. It was because the ship the changeling had been planning to use to escape before they caught up to him was going that way. So, to Griffonstone, apparently.
Eroraf 5th Apr 2020, 1:21 AM edit delete reply
To be fair, that one's on you for giving them that bit of information prematurely. Never assume that there are "no clues left to follow." A sufficiently observant or creative party will always find some clue, real or imagined.
MechaDitz 4th Apr 2020, 9:24 AM edit delete reply
Playing a full arcane caster with a gm who wasn't used to them let to a lot of sidequests cut short because we didn't to find an npc to do something when it was on my spell list. When dungeons suddenly get magic-proof it's a bit of a tell XD
Winged Cat 4th Apr 2020, 9:52 AM edit delete reply
Winged Cat
It has been said that when I play a game, I sometimes break the game - and that when I run a game, I hope my players break it.

I ran an entire 3ish year campaign on that premise. It worked wonderfully.

In the campaign I'm running now, the PCs have to escort a large automated factory through space. It can build lots of things - but most of the time, it's building a lot of fuel to resupply the giant unarmed ships following the PCs, whose safety is the real quest (so they need to show up, get refueled, and move on quickly). They only have free use of it for a week or so before arriving at the next world.

What they build may help determine the next world's challenges. Rarely have players so literally constructed their own rails.
aylatrigger 4th Apr 2020, 1:03 PM edit delete reply
And now that all the games are online, you can just flip the table in tabletop simulator.

For story time:
The players enter a library in the Big Bad's lair, with a shiny open book on a podium.

Player: "I look to see if there are any adventure books like 'Daring Do'"
Me, GM: "...Okay...Err, I guess you find a collection about 'Gentlepony Adventurer'"
Player: "Okay, I start reading that."

...They took three sessions reading and translating books for those who did not know the language instead of looking at the obvious plot-related-book. I apparently am very good at making on-the-spot fanfic in a game of fanfic in a tv show of a series of movies. And apparently there are about 100 books in the series.
I eventually convinced them to take all the books, ant haul with the strongest character (30th level so VERY strong) and do a series of Gates back and forth between town and the library taking all the books, so they could move on.
Scissors Rock Paper 5th Apr 2020, 3:02 AM edit delete reply
And now I have a new campaign idea. Ripping off the MLP comic, the characters go to a library and chase after a book worm, moving from one book to another to stop the big bad.
aylatrigger 4th Apr 2020, 1:07 PM edit delete reply
For one my party threw at our GM was when most of the party decided they would be a traveling circus. Without the GM being in on it. Or a couple other players. We shanghaied them. Also started a war because we stole back the penguin we gave as tribute (we really needed our exotic animals) to the king when he tried sending us on the adventure (which we eventually just gave up on and moved to another country).
DuoScratch 4th Apr 2020, 2:16 PM edit delete reply
Every campaign ever.
StrykerC 4th Apr 2020, 5:41 PM edit delete reply
Well lets see, started off the game with the players being hired to sneak in and blow up a city, figured A) they'd blow up the city. or B) turn in the employer and try and deal with him as a villain, then continue adventuring.

Instead they went along with the plan until arriving in the city at which point they decided to fix the place of every problem, political, social and technological. Game stayed in that city/area for a couple years of play real time.
MythicFox 4th Apr 2020, 8:33 PM edit delete reply
Story premise: There's a cosmic horror growing inside one of the player characters, preparing to birth itself into the world. It couldn't be stopped, but the intended resolution is that they could deliberately arrange its release in a way to weaken it so it could be fought.

Things went off the rails when: The player had a freakout over being the center of the plot, had his character become the cosmic horror's willing high priest, birthing it into being with the now-NPC as its agent and avatar, whereupon he would begin a bid to take over the city.
Dakkath 6th Apr 2020, 6:02 AM edit delete reply
The party needed to pay back a favor by rescuing some priests of Calistria from a fortified elven enclave. The plan they came up with for getting in?

Hire some dancers, planar ally in a lillend, buy a bunch of beaded necklaces, load up a wagon with several casks of booze, and basically bring a combination of Cinco de Mayo and Mardi Gras to the enclave.
CrowMagnon 6th Apr 2020, 3:23 PM edit delete reply
Now that's apex Chaotic Good if I've ever heard it.
Kaze Koichi 6th Apr 2020, 7:06 AM edit delete reply
No. Never. There is always a way to put a party back on track.
Either I good in railroading, or my party is bad in derailing.
Guest 7th Apr 2020, 5:50 AM edit delete reply
My group went far enough off the rails that we left a smoking crater in the city we were in almost as big as the the one in the DM’s notes
Arcada Vetrator 12th Apr 2020, 11:31 PM All the freaking time edit delete reply
Once got a player trapped in a seemingly normal hallway that began filling with water. There was a puzzle to open the magically locked door at the end. When he found his magic wouldn’t work on it, he simply asked if he still had his palantir (the fiery crystal ball from Lord of the Rings). I was confused and said yes, to which he calmly pulled it out and threw it through the door, draining the water. :0