Page 241 - Still the Best Policy

2nd Feb 2013, 5:00 AM in Bridle Gossip
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Still the Best Policy
Average Rating: 5 (3 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 2nd Feb 2013, 5:00 AM edit delete
You'd be surprised how much a "let-me-explain-everything" rant helps in a pinch, even on the roleplay table...

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Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 5:02 AM edit delete reply
Hey, that's actually a surprisingly clever idea! Well done!
Digo 2nd Feb 2013, 5:14 AM edit delete reply
Sad when being up front and open is considered a clever idea. :)
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 5:58 AM edit delete reply
True, but this is the obvious thing to do, and the obvious is rarely obvious to a person on the spot.
MirrorImage 2nd Feb 2013, 10:18 AM edit delete reply
Rarely obvious unless it involves casting Fireball, yes?
aylatrigger 2nd Feb 2013, 1:42 PM edit delete reply
I think you mean, 'Most answers are rarely obvious, but you can always use fireball (or some version of it).'
Seanpony Renaud 2nd Feb 2013, 7:28 AM This won't end well edit delete reply
DnD I have played since forever,
Open and honest is a good idea never!
Crimson Doom 2nd Feb 2013, 8:56 AM edit delete reply
Crimson Doom
Trust me, my friend: by telling the truth,
You'll never be slain by those fiends from Duluth!

NPCs loath nothing worse than a lie,
Save perhaps a strawberry arsenic pie.

So beware, my companion, choose lies carefully,
or you'll find yourself exiled to the Everfree!

*None of this based on actual events,
All of this, in truth, is my own two cents.
Malroth 2nd Feb 2013, 2:03 PM edit delete reply
NPC: Why is it you want to buy an abandoned mine filled with monsters there wasn't even any good ore there.

Me: We want something we can get away with using for weapons practice.

NPC: Are you out of your mind?

Me: Of course.
Hawk 2nd Feb 2013, 3:49 PM edit delete reply
Also they illegally sell chocolate there.

(Props if you get the reference.)
Veylon 3rd Feb 2013, 7:25 AM edit delete reply
Hey! How dare you impugn the Zenith City of the Saltless Seas! Everyone know's it's the Wisconsonites over in Superior who are the <i>true</i> fiends.
Blyndir 2nd Feb 2013, 5:05 AM edit delete reply
This looks like a job for: Salad Bar Man! Able to carry large amounts of lettuce and whole tomatoes in a single rucksack.

Excuse me everyone, I need to make my brain sit in a corner for a while.
Grey Pen 2nd Feb 2013, 5:05 AM edit delete reply
Did Apple Bloom get a player? Her speech bubble is WHITE!
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 5:08 AM edit delete reply
Thank you for pointing that out. I'll field this question for spud.

Applebloom is my character, that's why she has both white and yellow speech bubbles.
Newbiespud 2nd Feb 2013, 5:12 AM edit delete reply
Thanks for catching that, Grey Pen. Fixed.
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 5:25 AM edit delete reply
DanielLC 2nd Feb 2013, 10:40 AM edit delete reply
If she was your character, wouldn't she think in yellow rectangles?
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 2:54 PM edit delete reply
And speak in yellow ones, too. Like some kind of external consciousness.
Grey Pen 3rd Feb 2013, 7:29 AM edit delete reply
Yes! Wallow in freakish misery! For-EV-er! For I delight in your torment! :P
GrayGriffon 4th Feb 2013, 4:39 PM edit delete reply
Digo 2nd Feb 2013, 5:23 AM edit delete reply
"Let me explain- no, there's no time. Let me summarize."

My players have an often-frustrating thing they do for "let me explain" moments meant to be RP'd out between themselves. They call it:


Anytime some players got info and they must share with the other half, they call "BLAH" out loud and then the other players automatically assume they got the story. Since all the players heard it out of character, they figure there's no need to repeat anything.

As DM I don't really complain much about it... but as a player, this is where the frustrating point comes in.
I have to keep an eye on my daughter, including ensure she's fed, bathed, and put to bed at night. So often I'm away from the game to do these tasks and I miss important information. When I get back, I ask what my character has missed.

"BLAH" doesn't work on me in this case.

Unfortunately the other players can be downright knuckleheads so they fail to try and elaborate on what happened. This then leads to mission failure when we immediately get into a fight and my character isn't sure which side I'm supposed to be on.
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 5:28 AM edit delete reply
What's to know? point your fireballs at whoever's breathing, and rez anyone who was mission critical.
Digo 2nd Feb 2013, 6:56 AM edit delete reply
We're playing Shadowrun. There is no rez. >_>
MirrorImage 2nd Feb 2013, 10:17 AM edit delete reply
Those options don't necessarily have to go together. Fireball is still a valid option on its own.
sidhe3141 2nd Feb 2013, 2:10 PM edit delete reply

That depends on how much spare cyber you've got on hand and how good your team magician is.
Zuche 2nd Feb 2013, 12:00 PM edit delete reply
A Princess Bride quote? Digo, may your children bring you several lifetimes full of joy.
Digo 3rd Feb 2013, 8:40 AM edit delete reply
Thanks, my daughter is well on that good path :D

As for fireballs, I'm the team magician and I don't have that spell yet. I do have lightning bolt as it's the better option against robots and electronics. ;)

However, that fight turned against us because the mooks got themselves killed in their own grenade explosion, so no one was alive to extract info out of. :/
But that's okay, because we actually came together with a good plan to catch the BBEG's important minion and extract info out of him. :D
...until the cops showed up in a record breaking 36 seconds response time, this is including the time it took someone to call 911 when they heard gunfire, so no info for us to gain. :/

So now we have to go with the GM's railroading NPC to get any info.
Guest 2nd Feb 2013, 6:02 AM edit delete reply
Rainbow Dash has no bridle in panel 2.
"You could have taken it off at any time?"
"No, only when it was funny."
Giggle Tail 2nd Feb 2013, 6:16 AM edit delete reply
Giggle Tail
When we need to explain what's going on to NPCs, we usually just resort to comical paraphrasing. Example:

"See the big, red moon? Yeah, we're trying to do something about that."

Or our amazing recap rant of the entire plot of the campaign. I can't remember that one in as much detail, but here's the gist of it ("blahs" included):

Blah blah blah "The staff is the key!" Blah blah blah "BAGHLAGHLAGHLAGHLAGHLAGH!!!" Blah blah blah blah "FIRE EVERYWHERE!!!!" Blah blah blah...

In short, it consisted of a bunch of "blahs" and referencing every single one of the inside jokes/inside memes we had developed :P
Zuche 2nd Feb 2013, 12:19 PM edit delete reply
"I'm sorry, Mr. Denning, but you can't blow up the moon. Corporate policy..."

Best line from the penultimate issue of DC's Forgotten Realms comic.
Giggle Tail 3rd Feb 2013, 10:13 AM edit delete reply
Giggle Tail
We nearly thought we really were going to have to blow up the moon since it was the final boss's physical form O_O
CJT 3rd Feb 2013, 10:05 PM edit delete reply
Does your DM own a Dreamcast, by any chance? One of the plot twists in Grandia II went something like that.

Alternatively, if he has you running around collecting masks, worry.
Giggle Tail 4th Feb 2013, 6:22 AM edit delete reply
Giggle Tail
We teased him about the similarities between the campaign and Majora's Mask constantly, but apparently that was coincidence.

However, he did say the plot was almost entirely ripped off from "The Legend of Dragoon" :P
Page-Mistress 2nd Feb 2013, 6:55 AM edit delete reply
Pleasepleaseplease keep the "The HORROR! The HORROR" bit Newbiespud!
DoubleCross 2nd Feb 2013, 7:09 AM edit delete reply
Because it's not like Zecora ever tried to explain to people and they just didn't listen to her because they were too prejudiced to give a shit what she was actually saying.
Digo 2nd Feb 2013, 8:12 AM edit delete reply
Or when you do tell the truth they think you're lying and things go down hill in that direction. :D
HMorris73 2nd Feb 2013, 9:35 AM edit delete reply
It certainly would have helped if she hadn't been so cryptic...
Digo 3rd Feb 2013, 8:41 AM edit delete reply
"Why do you have to keep speeking in riddles?"

"Because I be what I be. And no cat, anywhere, has given anyone a straight answer." -The cat from Last Unicorn
DoubleCross 4th Feb 2013, 3:24 AM edit delete reply
Maybe the reason she rhymes is because the Poison Joke studied her dreams and noticed her want for people to actually listen to her and understand what she was doing.

So it jumbled her speech, and now even when people listen, they don't understand her.

(But seriously, in matters of discrimination, it's not a case of the discriminated person not explaining. It's a case of the discriminators repeatedly never listening and pretending they never said anything to begin with. It's a disgusting behaviour, and it's also something everybody engages in. Even all of you.)
Zuche 4th Feb 2013, 10:33 AM edit delete reply
Another of my favourite lines, Digo. Bought both books for the first time on the same weekend, after having known one movie only a summer's length and the other for maybe four years beyond that.
Guest 4th Feb 2013, 12:55 PM edit delete reply
Once again, the main issue with Zecora in the campaign is "she turns out ponies dead or crazy with weird potions" not "she has stripes".
Fred 2nd Feb 2013, 12:49 PM edit delete reply
I'm surprised the players haven't had some sort of fit yet at how much the DMPC is doing. If I'd been in Twilight's player's shoes, I would have been thinking long before this that it was time for Apple Bloom to shut up and sit down and let the PCs handle this. Having the DMPC offer to solve their problem for them would be the icing on the cake.
Belze 2nd Feb 2013, 1:10 PM edit delete reply
Bet it will go just fine, i mean they are just cursed its not like they have some weird disease with no known cure.
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 2:55 PM edit delete reply
Didn't people used to think that diseases were curses put on them by evil spirits?
Moonwolf 2nd Feb 2013, 4:58 PM edit delete reply
Whereas these days we know that they are in-fact blessings sent by the noble lord Raxon to toughen us up for the infinitely-rescheduled apocalypse.
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 5:47 PM edit delete reply
Gasp! i have no idea what you're talking about! I would never do such a thing!

whistle whistle whistle
kriss1989 3rd Feb 2013, 6:52 PM edit delete reply
Candy gram for a Mr. Raxon! Candy gram from a Mr. Nurgle!
Raxon 3rd Feb 2013, 11:46 PM edit delete reply
Oh boy! I love it when he sends me these! Hmmm, chocolate covered nuts, jordan almonds, chocolate turtles, peanut brittle...

He really likes to send me nuts. I wonder if he's trying to tell me something.

Oh well, I'll put it next to last week's fruit basket filled with bananas, and the stuffed loons from the week before.
aylatrigger 2nd Feb 2013, 7:04 PM edit delete reply
Good reason to lie: higher bluff than diplomacy.

I mean, think about it. Using Pathfinder/3.5 as an example:
You take 1 level of 'Inquisitor (Heretic of Infiltrator)' (+Wis mod.) (you can also take the 'Conversion' Inquisition to use Wis instead of Cha for it), 10 levels in 'Taker' with a Survival Skill of Bluff (+10), 1 level in Disciple of Baalzebul if you're evil (+Int mod), the feat Rapscallion (+Int), 10 levels in Master Spy (+10), 20 levels in Rogue(Spy) (+10 for deceiving someone), and... The list goes on. Add to that Glibness for +20 and all the various feats you can get (they list many here: ) and you can lie through your teeth and people will believe you when you say the sky is purple with green polkadots and the giant bone dragon is a small kitten. You could probably get epic level in bluff long before diplomacy, but then again diplomacy is more useful when it comes to gaining allies unless your DM is as kind as me. I think you could create a character who could speak to anything and bluff through everything pretty easily.
Malbutorius 2nd Feb 2013, 7:10 PM edit delete reply
Personally when I DM I wont let the players say that the sky is purple with green pokadots, Why? Because the Sky is blue, However, I will let players say that the Sky is under a Permanent Illusion and that the sky is actully purple with green pokadots, or that the Giant Bone dragon is actully a Polymorphed kitten.
Raxon 2nd Feb 2013, 7:13 PM edit delete reply
Ya know, I used to have this document where I wrote down the zen of bluff. It had to do with the idea that I could use bluff instead of intimidation or diplomacy. Basically, I have a crazy character who doesn't believe a single word of what he's saying, even if it's all true.

I'm not sure when I lost it, but I think it was around the same time my diary went missing. What a coincidence.
InvisibleDale 3rd Feb 2013, 11:24 PM edit delete reply
No, that's how you create a politician.
shineyorkboy 3rd Feb 2013, 1:15 AM edit delete reply
I'm confused. Why couldn't Zecora explain everything herself? It seems to me like she just chose not to.
Guest 3rd Feb 2013, 9:43 PM edit delete reply
Exactly, which is why Twilight NOT being a complete idiot (and not forgetting to mention useful things) is so amazing!
DoubleCross 4th Feb 2013, 4:52 AM edit delete reply
See my comments above. The episode was trying to be a racism metaphor, so this part fills itself in. The ponies probably never listened to Zecora when she did speak, because they're discriminators. They already shut their doors and closed their services to her, they treat her as a witch - at what goddamn point do you think that they'd show any tiny bit of decency to actually turn around and hear what she says?

Twilight isn't being amazing by any goddamn stretch of the imagination. She got one step closer to being a decent person by listening, and then took eighty steps back by imagining that somehow Zecora never mentioned this ridiculously important thing to anybody before and acted as if she's smarter than the one who's right there trying to cure the magical ailment she's suffering without anybody's help or compassion whatsoever.
Guest 4th Feb 2013, 12:53 PM edit delete reply
In the show, yes, that makes sense. In this campaign, she's hated not because she rhymes and has stripes but because she kidnapped and either killed or drove insane a good chunk of the populous (and intention doesn't really help when your children are corpses or loons). They stopped letting her use them as highly expendable lab rats so she forced them to, which makes her species as relevant as calling it a racism issue if it turned out Hitler was actually a black guy.
CJT 3rd Feb 2013, 10:11 PM edit delete reply
Presumably "listen to me" is an easier sell if you're a pony and have a reputation as a citizen of good repute, than if you're a foreign zebra who walked into a xenophobic town with no in-town history and with strange mannerisms. It's the difference between a +4 bonus and a -4 penalty on that Diplomacy roll, in game terms.

I'm going to be on the receiving end of something similar when the Ars Magica campaign spools up. This time I took "Blatant Gift". Normally, the Gift makes people treat magi like used car salesmen as soon as they open their mouths. Blatant Gift makes them think you're there to eat their children as soon as they _see_ you. Covenfolk will _slowly_ get used to you, but my character is not someone you want along on the town runs.
redwings1340 3rd Feb 2013, 5:12 PM edit delete reply
So, before this point the DM was acting very suspiciously, trying to force the players into a very specific situation through Apple Bloom. So far all her advice had been good, and this suggestion is logical, so I think this was a trap from the DM to get Apple Bloom away from the party. Not on Apple Bloom's part, but I'm thinking she was going to get turned to stone or something if they had let her go. Everything was too simple before now...
Mr. 0 3rd Feb 2013, 6:37 PM edit delete reply
"Nobody would mock
the heroes who saved their lives
if they look like fools."

"Because we all know
that the public's compassion
would never give way."

These tongue-in-cheek haiku done by yours truly.
Moonrush 3rd Feb 2013, 9:42 PM edit delete reply
This normally SOUNDS brilliant, but this one time the rest of the party kept wanting to mention my character's afflictionof being born a Host, which was basically the campaign's version of being a black, gay Jew in WWII Germany who also cheated on Hitler's wife and ate babies. The local NPCs were really braindead in that one, since being a Host is basically automatically casting "feat: random wings" if it's dark.
Needless to say I had to roll to "cover the idiot's mouth" during every encounter with sentient beings. I did let them tell the non-sentients, squirrels can keep secrets right?
Raxon 3rd Feb 2013, 11:49 PM edit delete reply
NO! Squirrels are the messengers of my most hated foe! Don't tell them messages!