Page 1699 - Of Notebooks Past

4th Jun 2022, 6:00 AM in What About Discord?
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Of Notebooks Past
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Newbiespud 4th Jun 2022, 6:00 AM edit delete
At the end of the day, some DMs just wanna show off their cool ideas. The problem is that the players then respond: "You know what would be an even cooler idea? If we murdered your cool idea right out of the gate with our off-the-wall plan."

And, I mean, they're not wrong, but-

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The Plan 4th Jun 2022, 6:27 AM edit delete reply
Somehow, I feel that Discord GM is manipulating Spike GM, making him think is his plan and he is helping with it, while forcing him to do the plan even if it's not convinced
Vahno 4th Jun 2022, 7:11 AM edit delete reply
Magic Eating Centaur... Yeah, that won't backfire...
Sapphire 4th Jun 2022, 8:03 AM edit delete reply
Yeah, Discord feels manipulative even out of character. I get bad vibes from him even during just this planning stuff.
aylatrigger 4th Jun 2022, 9:51 AM edit delete reply
I like showing cool ideas but also like them being murdered by other cool ideas. What I don't like is campaigns ending before either can happen cause players don't show or lose interest before either come up...
FrostLock 4th Jun 2022, 10:28 AM edit delete reply
People taking this page as Discord being manipulative makes me feel like they've never seen two GMs interacting. This page feels 100% normal to me and I genuinely don't see any malice in Discord's actions other than *presumed* malice based on his previous actions.
Darkness2399 4th Jun 2022, 12:30 PM edit delete reply
100% agree with you. I have a few DM friends and whenever we talk it's always about what the players are doing, what is ahead of them. What the lore of the world is, then speculating some unforeseen threat that would cause them chaos. Occasional jokes about TPK and the like, and then move on. There have even been moments where I am a co-DM at a table and I occasionally get bits of lore just ahead of the players so I can act out moments when they happen to get a bigger reaction from the players, and sometimes I prompt unmentioned lore bits from the DM when I feel the reveal would be a fun twist for the players.

DMs just love talking about their games, and speculating player reactions to Big Bads or other events. It's basically our version of the Players' character talk, where they talk all about what build or story idea they have planned and what crazy things it can do.
A Quiet Reader 4th Jun 2022, 1:13 PM edit delete reply
The "I'm doing you a favor" line might be setting off warning bells; it's been used by manipulative characters across enough media that it's become sort of a shorthand: 'If a character says this then they're a manipulator.' That said, the page as a whole seems like a fairly normal dialogue between 2 people behind the scenes, as you both said.

Some people have been convinced that DiscorDM is a jerk since the beginning, but it seems to me that he's been a flawed but fairly reasonable person. It would seem wildly OOC if he became a manipulative jerk out of nowhere.
I'm definitely still in the camp of "there's gonna be something happening eventually." There's still unresolved tensions from last game with DiscorDM, not to mention their attempts to not give him the reactions he wants. But as far as this page goes, it seems mostly harmless. I can see why people are on edge though.
Sapphire 4th Jun 2022, 7:13 PM edit delete reply
There's also the big thing of him being portrayed *by* Discord. And in a comic made in this way, the original character does inform what the new version is likely like as well, particularly since past major characters have been informed by their originals. Each of the Mane Six's players are rather like their characters, after all. It leads to an implication that DiscorDM is not to be trusted since, well, he's Discord.
Toric 4th Jun 2022, 8:38 PM edit delete reply
I think some of the problem is structural (which has been addressed in the comic). DiscordDM is not the DM, but he IS and adversary. He is TRYING to beat the players, albeit not necessarily so badly they want to quit. The problem is that he is playing a villain that gives him a lot of GM power, especially the first time around when no one was ready for it. And in some cases, that looks a lot like DM cheating, especially now when he is using lore that the players have NEVER had access to in an attempt to undo their progress towards victory. And he has yet to roll a single die, which makes it all the harder to feel like the game can actually be won by the party.

The part that bothers me at times, and likely many others, is that he doesn't seem aware of that viewpoint, or pointedly ignores it in a somewhat callous fashion. Again, this has been talked to death on numerous pages, but it all comes off as bad grace to the players. The adversarial mindset I mention above means that he is fundamentally playing a different game than they are. And it seems very possible than an ultimate resolution will come when he starts approaching the game more like a player, with a stake in the outcome.

I will say I have never heard the words "I'm doing you a favor!" and thought to myself "I don't feel like punching that guy at all!"
Sapphire 4th Jun 2022, 8:40 PM edit delete reply
Those are very good points I didn't think of, but upon reflection, do make a lot of sense. And your idea of him changing from DM to player approaches could very well be where things are going, given the Tirek pull.
A Hat with a Smaller Hat 5th Jun 2022, 10:20 AM edit delete reply

DiscorDM is not actively malicious as some have viewed it, but what has been clear from his character is that he has one hell of an ego. We saw this from his attempted encounter with Fluttershy's player in Return of Harmony. He doesn't simply want to make a clever move, he wants to be seen doing it and get acknowledgement for doing so. Fluttershy's player did not act in the way he wanted, instead figuring out his whole deal (even if it was a little OOC), and leaving him to frustratedly give up the attempt. The same happens once the game ends and DiscorDM both leaves really awkwardly when Fluttershy's player attempts to apologize and when regular DM tells him to cut out the theatrics.

This is why his reaction to them not giving him the over the top reactions he wanted was muted, disappointed, and almost a tad frustrated. They're not allowing him to get a vocal response because they know that's exactly what he wants, and what made the previous session so frustrating when everyone is being played by him sans Twilight.

Regular DM brought him in because he felt like he wasn't capable of making a long-term villain who could outsmart and outwit the party, and he had a moment in the last session where he realized that maybe his former mentor's DMing habits were not as fun as he remembered. So this scene which mostly seems harmless also partially feels like DiscorDM is turning the game back to his own control by having him bring in another insanely powerful villain.
Roguim 4th Jun 2022, 1:18 PM edit delete reply
So it will be Tirek huh, good move, that has no change to backfire....
also nice way to bring him to the story, Discord using an old and still not used idea to the campaign,
Jennifer 4th Jun 2022, 2:10 PM edit delete reply
It's less that they murder my ideas, than that they completely ignore them. Both in and out of character.

I am starting another simple-beginner RPG campaign at work starting this Thursday; while there are posters up and I've been experimenting with rules for months with the teens as guinea pigs, I have few illusions this time around. I am also sticking with my campaign world (if I don't just outright run nothing but one-shots): The Queen's Own Troubleshooters, a West Marches campaign I developed last time by accident. Whoever shows up on any game day will be the party - if they don't show up next week that's okay because all members are part of the city SWAT team and will take their turn in action. I'll keep track of a meta-plot in the background ... but I don't expect anyone ever to ask about it. We'll see how it goes.
Digo 5th Jun 2022, 11:00 AM edit delete reply
There was one campaign I ran where a young adult dragon was prepping himself to go Dracolich, using an ancient Rome he found that details how to do it. One of the final acts he needed was to be murdered by someone of heroic deeds. So he staged several plans to cause trouble and then waited for heros to show up and defeat those plans. The PVs did, and eventually did get into a showdown and the dragon was slain by the heroes.


Except for that little bit of a warning at the end of the book the dragon didn't notice that it wasn't to become a Dracolich, but to give your body up as a vessel to the Dracolich who wrote the book. Whoops!
Jennifer 5th Jun 2022, 8:12 PM edit delete reply
What happened next? Did the party have to fight him again, only superpowered?
Prairie Son 6th Jun 2022, 8:23 AM edit delete reply
"They put the warnings after the spell."

Also, autocorrect is not your friend. In this case, it corrupted tome to Rome.
MiqoRems 6th Jun 2022, 8:11 PM edit delete reply

Yeah, I think I'd probably be more than a bit annoyed as a player if the main villain got a reset and ally based on a legend that nobody has heard, *when one of the characters is explicitly a bookworm that studies every aspect of magic and history she finds*. Diabolus ex machina has never struck me as all that much fun.