Page 273 - Mixed Messaging

18th Apr 2013, 6:00 AM in Swarm of the Century
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Mixed Messaging
Average Rating: 5 (5 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 18th Apr 2013, 6:00 AM edit delete
Of course, a reasonably clever player will say that the silly faces Rainbow Dash makes in this scene would only ADD to the Intimidation factor, or at the very least the incendiary factor she was going for. And if it was in any way intentional on Rainbow Dash's part, I'd have to agree. Unfortunately, that's not the scenario that's unfolding here.

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: January 27th, 2023.



FanOfMostEverything 18th Apr 2013, 6:05 AM edit delete reply
I appear to be first. Hmm...
Story time! Tell us about a hilariously low roll and what came of it.
...if that's OK with all of you.
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 6:15 AM edit delete reply
I'm afraid I told that story here already, possibly twice. Maybe even thrice.

Last night's players were greatly relieved when I got a pair of 1s on attacks I rolled against the party's seeker. The poor guy deserved the break, seeing as a similar combo had knocked him unconscious in the first round and left him at 1 hit point right after being revived in the second. He went on to score the first kill of the night and net the record for enemies taken down by the end, so it all worked in the end.
Eonas 19th Apr 2013, 9:35 PM edit delete reply
I'll never forget the time our party's wizard fumbled a lightning bolt. He basically passed out right then and there.
Nikas 18th Apr 2013, 6:19 AM edit delete reply
In a Mythus campaign I had to try a default roll (percentage dice based system)for stealth without the skill and got something in the low single digits.

The GM had mercy and had the other party members notice and tell me to try again ("psst! Try stepping out of the light.")

My second roll was shockingly high. We joked I took one step back and disappeared into 'The all concealing shadows'.
Digo 18th Apr 2013, 7:12 AM edit delete reply
Scene: Party is on a field mopping up a squad of Hobgoblin goons that were hired by a blue dragon to kill us.

Blue dragon shows up with "Tucker's Kobolds" to correct his vetting mistake in goons.
I played an elf cleric of Tamara.

Blue Dragon: "I will offer you all a chance to beg for your lives."
Me: *Diplomacy roll- 1* "Rather pointmess seeing as we're all currently using our lives. I could give mine to you for begging, but I've already prmised to give my life for my goddess some time next month."
Blue Dragon: "SURRENDER!"
Me: *Intimidation roll- 1* "What? You wish to surrender to us? Very well we gladly accept!"

The icing on this comedy cake was that we curb stomped the kobolds in two rounds with critical hits and nearly killed the blue dragon because I had accidently set him on fire when I accidently set myself on fire.
Froborr 18th Apr 2013, 7:13 AM edit delete reply
So, in the Slayers d20 campaign the players acquired a magical weapon, an apparently ordinary hilt of red metal with a blade FORGED BY ELVEN MAGE-SMITHS OF THE PUREST GROUND BEEF. It was a +2 longsword that poisoned enemies, because raw hamburger.

Unfortunately, only one of them had sword proficiency, from his Noble base class. (They had two Rogues with fighter-y prestige classes, but one was whip-focused and the other gun-focused.) The Noble could have used the sword, but his Warrior of Justice prestige class forbade the use of poisons.

So while the rest of the party was out, he and the Magic User came up with a zany scheme: combine the Magic User's Craft Magic Item and the Noble's other prestige class, Dragon Chef, to COOK the hamburger of which the sword was made, eliminating its poison aspect.

So the Noble makes his first Cooking check. Natural 1.

I turn to the Magic-User. "Roll Arcana to prevent the spell from going haywire." It was a pretty easy check, since they'd only started: DC 20 to make it just a fail instead of a small explosion that trashes their equipment. And they were level 11 at this point, so a DC 20 on a core skill should be child's play.

Natural 1.

Did I mention that while the blade was a mere mortal magic item, none of the PCs had yet noticed that the HILT was the legendary Sword of Flame, a living fragment of the demon-god Shabranigdo that generated a blade formed of his burning wrath, the same power that fuels the magic nuke spell Dragon Slave?


A quarter of the city gone, and four sessions ensued of the party being hunted as black-magic terrorists. And they STILL didn't figure out what the sword was for a dozen more sessions.
Froborr 18th Apr 2013, 7:14 AM edit delete reply
Also: Hiding major setting-important artifacts inside interesting-enough-to-keep but not particularly powerful magic items. It's a trick you can only pull on your players once, but SO worth it for the looks on their faces.
Digo 18th Apr 2013, 9:18 AM edit delete reply
That is true! I did that once with a preserved cat in a jar.
Tovath 18th Apr 2013, 7:31 AM edit delete reply
Well let's see, There was the time that our party was in a tavern trying to find some info on a necromanser. Our meatshei- err swordsman rolled a 1 and the guy he was trying to ask started talking about the uses of marshmallow cream. Then his next roll was also low, so we were told his character started to believe it.

Fortently my own roll was decent, so I was able to get the info neede ;-)
aylatrigger 18th Apr 2013, 8:09 AM edit delete reply
As a GM, I tend to have fun results for when my players roll poorly. So I have many examples of this.
One campaign had any 1's in combat made a small hole in space open up and the attack go to a mountain lake-nowhere near the players. Somettimes, the attack failed so much that characters dropped their weapons in the hole. So at one point the party rolled poorly for navigating themselves, and they found a lake on a mountain with a bunch of weapons piled up.
One time we were in a 3.5 game where one of the players was a surly language professor and all the other players were students that were failing one of his courses. At one point, the teacher did a sense motive check on the merchant guild master. He rolled a 1, so I conncocted this strange motive about jim wanting to become a mushroom and how he had thirty kids or something. The teacher decided he needed to retire.
Lyntermas 18th Apr 2013, 9:01 AM edit delete reply
Hark and hear the tale of Rolf, the unluckiest wizard in Fezaris.

-Rolf was a last minute stand-in for the villain in a play. It was a skill challenge requiring two out of three successes. He got two Nat 1's. He was doing well with his lines, until he forgot the hero's name. And the villain's. His dancing lights spell missed the hero and hit a stagehand, causing some scenery to swing down and knock the hero actor offstage.

-Rolf used Arcana to try and identify a trapped magic scroll. Nat 1. Rolf just opens the scroll, triggering the runes and expelling the magic (harmlessly). The scroll vanished. We later learned it was an invisibility scroll, and that it was a good thing he hadn't done that with the "suicide fireball" scroll.

-Rolf casts a Sleep spell at a cultist who's infiltrated a good-aligned temple. Nat 1. An acolyte at the temple steps out into the hallway at that moment, gets hit, and falls face first into the rug on the floor.

-Rolf tries to aim a Grease spell at a cultist about to hit a cleric. Nat 1. He sneezes while casting, making the grease land right at his feet.
-Rolf decides to rush out and try and disable a magic murder machine. He rolls a Nat 1. The machine sends out a blast which paralyzes him. The machine rolls a nat 1. Rolf's shut-down spell actually works.

-Rolf tried to intimidate a cultist into leaving them alone. Nat 1. The cultist laughs and gets a free shot at Rolf. Roll to dodge...Nat 20. Shot misses and Rolf gets a bonus to initiative.
Zarhon 19th Apr 2013, 11:48 AM edit delete reply
Aren't you going to mention the "Tomb of Horrors" experience Torque is having, Lynt? :p

As far as "intimidation" stories go:

One of my players tried to "intimidate" a dire liger (a cross between a tiger and a lion, that's about three times the size of a person, and is too big to fit through a normal door), inside her den, while she was guarding an artifact AND her cubs within it, inside a temple.

He failed, and then the ligress got her own intimidation roll.

Cue nat20.

A roar that shook the temple, plenty of property damage (mostly from the liger smashing a hole where a door used to be), running, and Yakety Sax ensued.
CJT 18th Apr 2013, 10:12 AM edit delete reply
That was one impressive navigation failure. Did they ever figure out how to get back to ordinary geography?

I'm reminded of two television episodes, both involving finding a place where lost objects ended up. One was a "Real Ghostbusters" episode played straight (the ghostbusters headquarters ends up "lost" there, when things start to get serious). The other was from a childrens' cartoon called "Doctor Snuggles", where the lead character (an inventor) invents a "get-lost" machine for the express purpose of becoming lost so as to rescue someone else from the real of lost objects/people. That one was played for adventure/humour.

This was long enough ago for that character name to not be creepy, for context. Also long enough ago that LSD might actually have been involved in scripting some of the stranger episodes.
Vulpixel 18th Apr 2013, 9:50 AM edit delete reply
I kept failing an out of initiative grapple, and the DM decided that my char was boob-grazing the target. The party still won't let me live that one down.
Siccarus 18th Apr 2013, 11:03 AM edit delete reply
Last session of a DND campaing at school, We wernt going to see each other for over summer and no way to continue it. We were fighting a Stand in for the big bad had only a few minutes left. I attack with my great ax, Natural 1, roll to confirm, Natural 20, confirm crit, Natural 20 ect. SO I Missed the Bad guy, Hit a Load bearing Column (subsequently destroying it), collapsed the entire castle burying every one alive.
SSJMihoshi 18th Apr 2013, 11:29 AM edit delete reply
My cleric had such a habit of failing his balance checks I ret-conned his backstory to give him an inner-ear imbalance stemming from an ear infection he had as an orphan on the streets. From that point on he would only ride animals since they could "balance themselves."
gamergeek007 18th Apr 2013, 11:56 AM edit delete reply
This wasn't an actual fumble on the dice, but more of a mental one. My bard (non-DnD game) was attempting to get information about a resident in an inn and I decided to pretend to be a census taker, seemed legit, I even had a name picked out. But when I actually started talking to the barkeep I completely spaced on the name I had JUST came up with and I blurted out "Hi, I'm John Stamos." I have yet to live this down.
TheStratovarian 18th Apr 2013, 12:44 PM War of the Lance edit delete reply
Way on back, 2nd edition back. We were playing the Heroes of the Hance. I was playing Flint Fireforge, the fellow next to me was playing Tasslehof, the Tasslehof, so yeah, it was a first time enjoyment of pinkie random.

Anyhow, in an effort to forestall needing sanity checks, i decided to pick up the kender, and give a little toss to keep him moving. You know, the gentle push kinda deal.

Cue a natural 1, and a second right after. Poor Tanis managed to find out kender are quite aerodynamic and quite painful as he rounded the tree to meet and greet Tasslehof face first.

Though in my times, anytime you grandstand for an epic line, you can expect either two things, a lovely natural 1, or a 20, sometimes back to back, or even ying/yanged. Still, lady luck has always been a kind one to me. Compared to another time, poor cleric.

A later ecl 18 3.5 game. We had met the BBEG, a vampire mage. He manages to win initiative, a bad thing for everyone, but attacks smartly, going after the cleric, who botches badly, with a 1 on her reflex save against a Polar ray (8th level spell) The vamp, in how lady luck loves to be, scores, not 1, but 2 natural 20's in a row, and obliterates our cleric at the start of the fight with something like 200+ damage. Still managed to barely win that one, but no one else fell surprisingly.
KitKatarine 18th Apr 2013, 1:09 PM edit delete reply
We were hiding from a group of dopplegangers. I had gone to the camp to investigate, but i left my two party members behind. They were hiding in the trees, but our cleric rolled a nat 1... He basically sat in the path and picked his nose. Needles to say I set the ball rolling and all hell broke loose. Our cleric almost died.
Tatsurou 18th Apr 2013, 1:15 PM edit delete reply
Allow me to tell you of the tale of what my group called "The Day of Loki's Dice".

It was a major battle against a demoness, Lawful Evil (aligned with dark forces, but stuck close to her own personal code of honor...even if it was rather twisted and nowhere near close to local law).

The Paladin (female, Lawful Good) attempted a grapple check late in the battle. Based on positions, we determined that she would accomplish the grab, somehow, whatever the roll.

Grapple check: Natural 1.

She ends up grabbing the demoness by her breast and crotch. As the rest of the group starts laughing, I roll for the Demoness.

Grapple Break: Natural 1.

The demoness lets out a throaty moan of pleasure. Given that the demoness was a mixed breed, with some sucubus, Paladin rolled.

Will Save: Natural 1.

The Paladin is unable to stop herself from...well, you get the idea. THe Demoness rolls.

Fortitude: Natural 1.
Arcana: Natural 20.

...anyway, the group then has a bit of discussion over whether or not the paladin technically raping the demoness - even if she was under arcane influence at the time - qualifies as something that breaks her alignment, especially since the goddess she serves doesn't have any anti-demon attitude.

Diplomacy: Natural 20.

It turns out that, because of the demoness's strange code of honor, she is now bound to the Paladin, to follow her everywhere and aid her as she needs. We determine that this means the Demoness has technically been converted as an acolyte. Since conversion is a grey area, the entire situation gets filed under 'the goddess doesn't want to get involved, let's pretend this never happened.'

The part's Chaotic Evil cleric of Loki rolls.

Perception: Natural 20.

In the god realms, Loki is laughing his ass off as he hands a large payment to High Roll (a homebrewed deity that everyone feared, the god of random chance).
Dusk Raven 18th Apr 2013, 1:40 PM edit delete reply
That has to be one of the most hilarious stories I've read on here.

Although, as usual, I'm curious as to the aftermath... for some reason I like the idea of an evil being following a good character around and working for them.
Tatsurou 18th Apr 2013, 6:04 PM edit delete reply
Oddly enough, the aftermath was relatively simply resolved. The demoness simply became the party's NPC combatant...but she still worked to cause mischef for the party.

See, her code of honor specifically stated she now had to obey the Paladin, follow her wherever she went, and render assistence when needed. The interpretation of this directive, however, was much less strict.

She obeyed all orders...exactly as they were stated.
She followed the Paladin everywhere...especially those places the Paladin preferred she didn't.
She rendered assistence the form of witty commentary and the occasional helping hand placed in exactly the wrong place at the wrong time...or up exactly the wrong skirt.

And while the Paladin wasn't considered responsible for the demoness' actions in terms of alignment, she was considered responsible in every other possible way.
StarshineDash 18th Apr 2013, 11:00 PM edit delete reply
That... that is just beautiful *single tear*
Strator 27th Apr 2013, 8:30 PM Darth edit delete reply
It's generally considered bad form to force a player character to have sex, regardless of what dice they may roll, or any spell they might be under, especially if the players female.
AttentionDeficitGuy 18th Apr 2013, 1:34 PM edit delete reply
Well, there was the time that my Swordsage got a nat 1 on an attack roll. Then another nat 1 to confirm a critical failure. Fortunately, the luck roll showed that the failure was merely that he slammed the sword into the ground. But THEN the ground rolled a nat 20 to damage his sword. That's right, the enchanted sword given to him by his master shattered, right in the middle of an encounter. With a swarm of little automatons with debilitating attacks and going after him, a guy with no backup weapon, he very quickly and very decidedly died.
Grey Pen 18th Apr 2013, 2:23 PM edit delete reply
I got free beds at a hospital once! On a natural 1!

I mean, sure they put us in straight jackets and muzzles....

But still!
Heart 18th Apr 2013, 4:14 PM edit delete reply
So in a Corporation game I was playing, another character developed a crush on my character, and I rolled to see if she noticed...and then critically botched. She completely missed it, then a few weeks later a situation came up where he was acting all lovestrucken and stuff again. Again, critical botch. This happened a total of three times.

Although since Corp is a roll low system, technically those were very high rolls...
LegendofMoriad 18th Apr 2013, 4:53 PM Of crits and crit fails edit delete reply
Several months ago, I was playing a Pathfinder game with some friends. The DM of this session was of the opinion that crit fails should be interesting. This became a problem when one of the members consistently rolled either crit or crit fail on all attack rolls. The DM decided this meant she always attacked hard, and missing meant that it slipped out of her hand and went flying. Eventually, she had stocked up several weapons, just because she would need them. So we enter another combat, and she has 4 large weapons strapped to her back, and one halfling (me). I was functionally just a turret. But she had the strength to pull it off, and we'd already rigged a series of straps to hold me on. Anyway, halfway through the fight, she's out of weapons again. On my turn, I pass her mine. A small dagger. This thing was a toothpick to her. She declines, and sheathes it. And misses. She sheathed my dagger in me. Squishy little halfling passes out. We all had a good laugh about that.
Guest 18th Apr 2013, 4:58 PM edit delete reply
Our sorcerer rolled a natural 1 for his Fortitude check when drinking a particularly strong wine. He was taken out of the action until the following morning, where he woke up in an unfamiliar house next to an unfamiliar woman and wearing a wedding ring.
Suraht 18th Apr 2013, 5:43 PM edit delete reply
The not-so-hilarious one was a dwarven barbarian was trying to show off his ability to play Five Finger Fillet, only he rolled a natural 1 on his dexterity check, and in that game, natural 1 prompted a few extra rolls. The next two follow up rolls were also natural 1s, and the DM winced as he looked through the extra charts as it turned out three successive natural 1s essentially meant that he'd just managed to puncture his own temple(first was critical failure, second was severe self-damage, third was location)and we started out the session without the meatshield.

More to the funny aspect was a DM for our AD&D campaign that absolutely hated paladins, so my freshly rolled paladin became the target of a vampire the group was hired to deal with. The vampire singled out my paladin, managed to separate him from the group, and then tried to dominate him...and rolled a natural 1, giving my paladin a free shot as the vampire stood there staring at him.
Now, my paladin had a massive holy symbol sewn into his tabard, so since I knew he didn't stand a chance in typical combat even with the free shot, I decided to take advantage of the holy symbol and had my paladin give the vampire a hug. The vampire then rolled a natural 1 on both his save against the symbol and his attempt to break grapple. After a quick smite evil the next round, the vampire was incapacitated and the adventure was basically over less than ten minutes in.
FiD Twilight would be proud, I think.
Belze 18th Apr 2013, 8:59 PM edit delete reply
well on the last page i told you about how my rogue got cursed by a god, time to tell you how i got free ^^
(not so much about low rolls as it is about high rolls being just as bad)

Not more then 4 hours after being cursed why find us self in an orc/goblin town filled with good orcs, we are trying to buy an airship from them.
(I am extremely racist against orcs)
so as any sane person would do i sneak attacked a goblin and killed it with a pebble, another goblin Nat 20 a spot check and starts to accuse me. after a lot of lying and excuses an orc leader appears and decide it would be best to pull us in for questioning i disagree make a smoke bomb and leave to go look at airships.

At this point our cleric decide it would be best to stop me before I start doing something stupid... stupider.
So he use my curse to cast hold person on me even tho he does not know where i am, Will save Nat 1, so now I'm frozen in the middle of a town filled with goblins and one of them spots me and walk over to me.
using our mind link i send a message to the cleric "David free me this instant a goblin is looking at me"
the goblin comes closer
Roll to cancel hold person Nat 1
goblin start going around me.
"David I'm warning you"
Roll to cancel hold person still low
Goblin steals my bag of holding.
"That little piece of shit stole from me!!"
Cleric fails to cancel hold person once again.
Goblin runs
The cleric is now starting to panic from my treats and tries one last time.
Nat 20 GM smiles "roll again" Nat 20
GM: "you cancel the spell but not only that you also cancel the curse on Colin"
I smile as I am freed and the holy light fades from my body.
"Thank you and tell your god from me, I win" I say over the mind link as a unnatural darkness falls on the town and I start hunting goblins.
Pliterpliter 18th Apr 2013, 11:07 PM edit delete reply
DnD 3.5 Playing an at the time chaoitic neutral hexblade, he got more evil as it went along, I, thanks to the action of the rogue, always the way ain't it, ran afoul of some gaurds. I ran into a different room, used my hat of disguise self to appear to be a gaurd and bluffed, when they entered that someone had just ran past me. Nat one. Then in the ensuing chase I dove at a window, nat two bouncing off the brick wall. Lastly I rounded a corner and, due to an empathetic if not sympathetic DM found a trash heap I could hide in, diving into it, I rolled a nat one. The gaurds then found me sprawled on the ground and arrested me.
Ryuutakeshi 18th Apr 2013, 11:32 PM edit delete reply
Rolling to hit a wall with a tether line so we can shimmy across and grab a magic scepter. I rolled a 1 and missed a WALL. I hit the scepter instead.
Matticus 19th Apr 2013, 12:57 AM edit delete reply
Honestly, my gaming history has been filled with more hilariously lucky rolls than hilarious natural 1s. With that said, the last two campaigns in my Game of Thrones game have had several instances of what have been affectionately dubbed "Vyuka dice."

A Song of Ice and Fire RPG uses a dice pool system, with bonus and kept dice. A knight might have four ranks in fighting, but might have two bonus dice in long blades to reflect his training with swords. The knight in question would roll 6d6 and keep the best four.

One of my players, "Vyuka" (nicknamed after her Star Wars the Old Republic character), had a very, VERY long streak where she was seemingly incapable of making rolls that didn't include at least one 1 in her kept dice. She rolls three and keeps two on her ride test: rolls two 1s. She rolls five and keeps three on Persuasion (Seduce): four 1s. It's gotten to the point that anytime someone rolls poorly over that we all declare that they've borrowed Vyuka's dice.

The biggest victim of this wasn't even a PC--it was a little pickpocket kid that was to be a recurring character in the adventure. His first appearance would be to attempt to pickpocket one of the players and then lead them on a chase that would set up clues and such. He rolled four and kept three for pickpocketing.

He rolled four 1s. he not only failed to steal the player's coin purse, but got himself caught red-handed and had to throw all the other gold he'd stolen that day down as a distraction to set up the chase.
Norakos 19th Apr 2013, 1:46 AM edit delete reply
So we were playing a vampire game and we had a bunch of... soft players. It was OWoD so it was very much, have reserve characters. I'm used to characters dying so its nbd to me but the other characters werent. So we were in a tight, narrow passage and triggered the famous 'ceiling crushes you trap' and my ghoul frenzies. Now, we found out that Potence 3 was the minimum required to hold the ceiling for long enough to let everyone out, and since my ghoul was going nuts I had to sacrifice my ventrue. Yup, thats right, the blueblood went out like a boss. Only, THE OTHER THREE PLAYERS FREAKED ON ME! They were all, no you can't die, no! What none of them realized was that if I moved, everyone in that tunnel died.

Oh and did I mention that everyone kept failing on a diff 6 roll to advance through the tunnel?
Smilez221 19th Apr 2013, 4:19 AM edit delete reply
So one time my party was doing a skill challenge to show off for these ghosts. Each character could choose a skill that s/he/it is best at. Being a barbarian(and a goliath), my character decided to do Athletics. I never rolled higher than a 5. I single-handedly lost the challenge for all of us.

(I may have told this story before, but oh bloody well.)
andreas002 19th Apr 2013, 8:17 AM edit delete reply
Some time ago, we were playing a homebrew D&D game on IRC. I was getting lots of high rolls and the DM was getting lots of low rolls, so he jokingly rolled a D9999999999999999, give or take a few 9s.
... He rolled a 1. We now refer to him as the botch king.

Since then, he continues to get lots of low rolls, currently as a player. However, we're playing Dark Eye now, where low rolls are good and high rolls are bad.
xanderman1201 19th Apr 2013, 9:30 PM edit delete reply
Once, i cast true strike on my self to give me a plus 20 on my next attack, in order to guerantee i didn't miss the giant spider i was fighting in a dark cave. when my next turn came around, i rolled a natural 1 and ended up shooting myself in the foot when the creature had moved within point blank range. the DM was laughing so hard, we had to take a 10 minute break for him to calm down before we could contenue the fight.
kajisora 22nd Apr 2013, 4:46 AM edit delete reply
Very well!
This happened during the previous session of a game i'm in:
Situation: me and another party member are in an underground room, and roll perception for an exit. Ally finds a door, I roll a nat 1.
My character becomes convinced that a hole in the center of the room (green glowing ooze at the bottom) is the PERFECT exit.
My ally naturally tries to stop me. I resist, with a few bonuses and get a nat 20, tossing the poor chap into the hole and ooze, and jump after him, landing on a platform.
Acrobatics for jumping the platforms to a nearby door. Once again, my ally succeeds, I get a 1. Sploosh.
We exit the room. Meanwhile our 2 other allies are drifting down an underground river, making a lot of noise as they go along. Perception. ANOTHER 1. I think they are crocodiles and jump in to grapple them. I fail and get drifted over instead.
At the end of the session, it turns out I have radiation poisoning due to overexposure to ye deadly ooze.
Suburbanbanshee 18th Apr 2013, 6:08 AM edit delete reply
Looks like mal-de-mare.

I'm pretty sure that the Royal Guard (epitome of the stallion urge to guard the herd) is not wanting to put the beatdown on even an annoying mare. But they may decide that Dash has more than a bit of mental instability, caused either by high altitude anoxia or exposure to high magic levels. So maybe she's a security risk.
Rokas 18th Apr 2013, 6:13 AM edit delete reply
Reminds me of any time I have to roll Charisma. (CHA CHA CHA) I made it a dump stat for my gun-loving weapons specialist character, so anytime he talks there's a very high probability of him offending the crap out of the NPCs. Fortunately it hasn't started any wars... yet.
CommandoDude 18th Apr 2013, 6:34 AM edit delete reply
This is why I hate when DMs call for rolling Cha skills in lieu of roleplaying.

Being a charming fighter doesn't mean you need a high diplomacy. In pathfinder, the ONLY uses for diplomacy are altering NPC starting attitudes, making requests, and gathering information.
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 6:48 AM edit delete reply
How is that contradictory to Rokas' dilemma?
Kynrasian 18th Apr 2013, 7:49 AM edit delete reply
That said, DMs shouldn't use roleplaying in place of checks to cover the asses of players who dump certain stats. Proper, full-on roleplaying would require that you have to actually take account of those scores when speaking in-character, but let's face it that's just an absolute headache.

The DM Guidelines for D&D Next encourage you to only call for a check when the outcome is uncertain: eg. a player wants to lie to an NPC but cannot think of a convincing lie to tell, so they roll instead of speaking and the effectiveness of the lie is determined by the roll.

The argument "role-playing before roll-playing" can be applied to just about anything:

-If I want to find out something about a monster, why must I make an Intelligence check if I'm willing to sift through source materials in character?

-Players should never have to roll to have guesswork on their part confirmed or denied. If they work out what something is, does or wants on their own, they deserve to know.

-A believable enough lie requires no bluff check.

I find role-playing over roll-playing a good rule to live by.
terrycloth 18th Apr 2013, 11:01 AM edit delete reply
"Role-playing over roll-playing" lets power-gamers walk all over you. All they have to do is be able to fast-talk the GM out of character -- I've seen it get *completely* out of hand.

Letting characters get away with stuff because you think their players pulled it off convincingly is no different than letting them look up monster weaknesses in the monster manual and metagame their hearts out.
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 12:07 PM edit delete reply
Letting characters get away with stuff because you think their players pulled it off convincingly is no different than letting them look up monster weaknesses in the monster manual and metagame their hearts out.

No, it's very different. If you're satisfied with the effort and the players feel they've accomplished something, the mechanics don't matter. Furthermore, knowing that personal effort can bypass the need to roll encourages players to get more involved in the game.

I've seen DMs take the opposite approach to social skills, where you don't get to roll until you can first make a case for being able to succeed. That's not for everyone, but some tables prefer that level of challenge. Others prefer to have everything decided exclusively by roll, and others prefer to let personal effort enhance the results of a roll. Some even mix ideas.

It doesn't matter if the rules say a given approach is wrong. What matters is whether table consensus agrees that the approach is right for the table.
Malroth 18th Apr 2013, 3:22 PM edit delete reply
I do the reverse. In real life i'm an antisocial jerk with 2 CHA tops but i often wind up playing a Cha optimized diplomonster with social skill modifiers in the +60 range. I myself can't make friends or convince someone to do anything besides spray mace into my face but my character can and should be able to wrap NPC's around his little finger with his charm and wit despite his players shortcomings just like the Barbarian should not be penalized for his player being in a wheelchair.
terrycloth 18th Apr 2013, 10:58 AM edit delete reply
Doesn't that cover pretty much every conversation you're going to have with NPCs? I mean, those are all very broad categories.
TheStratovarian 18th Apr 2013, 12:59 PM edit delete reply
I agree here, that calling for them over proper rp means that your better off just starting the fight and ending them rather than using those skills.

Dm's wonder why folks never take bluff (outside rogue feinting) intimidate (Outside knight/barbarian bonuses) or diplomacy outside prestige class requirements? That is the core reason. They are never used unless in set modules, and worthless really because most critter late game aren't going to be diplomatic (outsiders/undead) or the humanoid bbeg who is immune. The fact of most fights starting at hostile means you couldnt shift that viewpoint anyway. So your sol for skills, which are better spent along the physical boosts (Any athletics check) or things like spellcraft/spot/listen or knowledge skill (which is useful)

Good rp should settle things, not leave everything to chance. Dice should help with getting that extra bit out, that makes things worthwhile. If it fails, then good rp has helped you get answers already, just not the inside info.

If you really wanted to talk to someone via the three interaction skills, charm/dominate them via magic and get your answers that way, works much better, and less hassle than trying to do a skill check. Dirty, effective, but stops the dm from trying to hide things. Since it tells you everything when you try. SR, means they are plot important or an outsider, which again is something potent. Doesn't work, not out of the save, but immune, again, case in point.

Warlock I love for this exact point. Infinite use of charm monster, with 0 casting signs, means you can up and break anything that requires social actions. Just talk and keep casting, and eventually, everything will fail on principle of that low roll or 1.
CJT 18th Apr 2013, 2:32 PM edit delete reply
Roleplaying a character that doesn't match the stats you assigned counts as rules abuse, in our group's books. Nobody's going to argue over whether you're roleplaying a CHA of 9 vs 10, but if you made it a dump stat and have CHA 3, you'd _better_ be roleplaying that character as the most horrible person imaginable. Likewise, if you're playing an amazingly charming diplomancer, you'd better have the CHA and Diplomacy scores to back up that portrayal, or expect to have a chat with the DM.

The way it usually ends up working in practice is that we have minimum scores of 8 or so in char gen, to avoid the "dump stat" temptation entirely. Roleplaying for diplomacy, bluff, and so forth is important - but isn't the end of things. A good RPd justification is what gives you the _opportunity_ to roll (and may affect the DC of the check, if you've made a particularly good or bad choice of tactics).

If you feel the need to just ignore the stat and skill mechanics, it means you're probably playing the wrong system.
Aerion 19th Apr 2013, 1:53 AM edit delete reply
I think it was on this site that someone described how they essentially forced someone to 'play their Char' by just interpreting them as entirely unlikable, even though the player was trying to make them seem like Prince Charming.
'How fare thee, my good sir?'
'You making fun of me?!'
'I meant no offense, you seem to have misunderstood my intent'
'Oh, so now it's MY fault?!'
Zuche 19th Apr 2013, 8:15 AM edit delete reply
I can't fully agree with this either, CJT. Malroth's point about the barbarian played from a wheelchair is well made. If we already accomodate people wishing to have their characters transcend their own physical and mental limitations, there's no good reason to deny them the same freedom to do so socially as well.

That said, I'm all for encouraging people to give a bit more in game. If it's going to be fair, though, you have to either keep personal limitations from preventing any hope of success, or you ought to have consistency and the requirements for performing exceptional physical and mental feats as well. Puzzles can effectively simulate the latter, while the former can sometimes be covered with weights, hand-eye coordination tests, and displays of personal stamina. Since you're not expecting any of those to compare to the character's accomplishments, you should be cutting exactly the same amount of slack to the social skills as well.

That said, if your players are the sort that could sell shoes to snakes, convince people they've never met that they've been inseparable friends since birth, and scare roosters into laying eggs, don't rob your table of the opportunity to see something special just because an attempt to convince gods to worship one of them can be settled with a die roll.

The rules matter less than consistency, and even that can slide when that best serves the individual needs of the players or the collective enjoyment of the table.
CJT 19th Apr 2013, 9:50 AM edit delete reply
Once again, you seem to be overlooking the points I was making in the post you are responding to.

* Point the first:

There is a character that is described by the stats and skills that you have _chosen_ to allocate.

There is a character that is described by your actions during play.

If those two descriptions are substantially different, there is a _serious_ _problem_.

* Point the second:

The purpose of the rules is to _facilitate_ game play - to make it easier and more fun for the players and DM to run the type of game they want to.

If you find yourselves point-blank ignoring, throwing out, or having to work against the game rules, it means that the style of play the rules are geared towards does not match the style of play the group desires.

It doesn't mean the rules are _bad_ or _incorrect_.

It means the group _should_ have chosen a _different_ set of rules, from the start.

I hope this adequately clears things up.
Zuche 19th Apr 2013, 11:15 AM edit delete reply
No, CJT, I understood all of that perfectly. And once again, if that's the way you want it, good for you. It works perfectly well for tournament conditions.

In a home game, however, where "playing to win" is an absurd goal, your terms are meaningless. It's been clear for decades now that D&D was never geared toward one style of play, so don't try that argument. I know a lot of people wish it was designed with that intent, believing it could eliminate most inter-player conflict. Maybe so. Never mind that it would shut out players who have no interest in playing it the One True Way, so long as I've got mine, right?

The rules are a toolbox. The game is an art. Restrict yourself as you please, but you will respect that another table is not bound by your chains. There is only a problem if you make one, and if you have no seat at the table, it's not yours to do so.
CJT 19th Apr 2013, 11:55 AM edit delete reply
Your response shows that you still have no clue what I'm talking about, and are continuing to make rather absurd assumptions about how I play.


* Where on earth are you getting "playing to win" from?

You seem to be confusing "choosing rules to play by" with "turning things into a competition". If you don't want rules, don't choose to _play_ with rules. The whole _point_ of picking a game system is so that you have a set of rules that _helps_ you play the style that you prefer - _whatever_ style that is. You keep assuming that I'm picking some specific style (that you hate).

My comments above apply to _any_ style of play. Kindly quit making incorrect assumptions.

* Where the _hell_ do you get "don't try arguing that D&D is geared towards one style of play"?

There are many styles of play it can work with, from high fantasy to low fantasy to whatever else you decide to run. You seem to be assuming I like one specific type of game. That's a silly assumption that I've corrected you on several times. Stop making it.

The _mechanics_ of the system certainly _do_ cause artifacts of playstyle. For example, all variants of D&D have the "pile of hit points" effect, where high-level characters can shrug off damage that would incapacitate low-level characters. This lets them take certain risks that would be untenable in systems with different rules (ones with fixed hit points/damage capacity no matter what your level/advancement). Neither of these is bad, but you'll have a much harder time building a heroic swordsman in Ars Magica than in D&D. Different rules _facilitate_ different styles of play more readily.

The argument in this thread is about skill checks. If you don't find skill check mechanics for diplomacy/bluff/etc satisfying, then why play a system that _uses_ them? Other systems exist! There are systems where situations like this are _explicitly_ freeform, and those would arguably do a _better_ job of supporting games where players don't like using skill checks, because you don't have to waste time _tracking_ skills like that or points _buying_ skills like that.

There is more to the world of gaming than d20. Play different systems, _explore_ those differences.

* Where on earth did you get your previous line about "characters transcending their own limitations" from?

Your character can be anything you want it to be. Your stats - freely chosen by you - are your _expression_ and _description_ of that, not a _constraint_ on that.

You seem to consider stats a straightjacket. That's rather silly; they're a more precise equivalent of being asked to provide a written description of what you want your character to be. "Transcending" that is just as silly as saying "I know I said I want my character to be X, but I'm changing it to Y on the fly because I feel like it". If you decide mid-game that you want to re-work your character concept, by all means do so, but don't claim it's because of the rules.

If you have a set of rules where you _can't_ adequately describe the character you want, then - per above - it means you're playing the wrong game. Negotiate with your group to use a different system or to house-rule changes that let you build the character you want.

I don't expect any of this to get through to you, but I have to try. Your constant assumptions about what _I_ think got old months ago.
Zuche 19th Apr 2013, 2:08 PM edit delete reply
I made no such assumptions. You should stop reading too much into such things.

The only reason a game needs rules is to determine a winner. Otherwise, they are guidelines, to be ignored or adjusted as best serves the table's best interest, which can change from hour to hour, even session to session. If I find Dave's description of a Diplomacy check interesting enough to carry the scene, there's no reason to leave it to a roll this time. None at all. If he's too tired to put the same energy into it near the end of the session, then rolling will serve us better.

My comments above apply to _any_ style of play.

Wrong, if only because you are not recognizing more flexible styles of play as such. Style isn't limited to genre; it also applies to structure. Fast and loose is a style. Orthodox is a style. Personally adaptable is a style.

The argument in this thread is about skill checks. If you don't find skill check mechanics for diplomacy/bluff/etc satisfying, then why play a system that _uses_ them?

You're arguing against a straw man. I never argued that you shouldn't use these mechanics. I said that you were free to use or ignore them whenever it served you best.

Seriously, if Dave describes something so mindblowingly impressive that the entire table stops to applaud and laugh, why should I require him to make a skill check for it? Perhaps if he's untrained with that skill and has a low ability score, sure, but maybe not even then. If it will move the story forward and everyone had a good time, the mechanics aren't required for the moment. They're not going anywhere before we'll need them again. The consequence of being willing to put the rules aside when it would be more fun at the time for the table to do so is... what, exactly? That's something determined on a table by table basis. In my experience (as DM, player, and coordinator), the result is usually that the players have more fun.

It's not all or nothing, CJT.

You seem to consider stats a straightjacket.

No, I consider your interpretation of the stats to be a straitjacket. I consider the stats to be a guideline. There's a huge difference between the two positions.

I don't expect any of this to get through to you, but I have to try.

Nonsense, and arrogant nonsense at that. If you want to disagree, go ahead. If you want to clarify what you see as misconceptions, feel free. But if you'd like to talk down to me, find a taller ladder and a firmer place to anchor it, right?
Zuche 19th Apr 2013, 7:37 AM edit delete reply
I don't fully agree, TheStratovarian. Some tables see those skills used constantly because a DM lets players walk all over everything with them. Others never see them used at all because a DM never lets players get away with using them. Likewise, the "always hostile" setting for encounters is not a given, even if commonly assumed.

As for the, "Who needs skills when you have spells?" PoV, I've seen a DM make that backfire very quickly by playing on paranoia. The reaction you'll get from other NPCs is bad enough, but when other players acknowledge that if your PC is so liberal with the use of such spells, there's every reason to believe that their PCs are (or have been) put under the same influence.

All players have arbitrary levels for what they find acceptable, effective, and plausible within the rules mechanics. (My bar is generally, "If that would look really stupid on screen even with an unlimited budget behind it, I'd rather not see it in game.") This is why it's worth discussing such issues with the rest of the table, so that you can adjust rules and mechanics so that they can be better utilized by your group.

It's also why I have little use for character optimization boards: they demonstrate limited vision.
Newbiespud 19th Apr 2013, 9:04 AM edit delete reply
I'd throw in my two cents into this conversation, except that I'm not 100% sure what the unspoken agreements at Stairc's table usually are. Ours is never so much an issue of "roll-playing vs. role-playing," but "oh crap we're gonna die if we don't figure out a solution to the DM's impossible challenge of the week." Sometimes that means talking through it, and sometimes that means using skills and powers VERY creatively.

In my mind, the ideal DM would say, "By all means, use whatever you like," in the same tone that Clint Eastwood uses to say, "Go ahead, make my day."
Zuche 19th Apr 2013, 11:24 AM edit delete reply
I sometimes get the impression that Stairc read Machiavelli's advice as, "It is better that your players should fear you and love your game."

And if you're too busy playing the game to argue about how it should be played, that's a good sign.
Apples are blue, right? 22nd Apr 2013, 1:32 PM edit delete reply
Raxxon, help! Nobody has been funny for about five thousand words of argument!
Oblivion 20th Apr 2013, 8:02 PM edit delete reply
"Dm's wonder why folks never take bluff (outside rogue feinting) intimidate (Outside knight/barbarian bonuses) or diplomacy outside prestige class requirements"


Yeah you've never played with any group like mine then.
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 6:22 AM edit delete reply
Bravo. Once again, I'm impressed at how you altered the nature of this scene from a silly attempt to get guards to corpse (please ensure your kids know never to do this) to a horribly botched attempt to provoke a fight.

I guess you could say Rainbow's hopes were dashed... but you probably wouldn't.
Indalecio 18th Apr 2013, 6:58 AM edit delete reply
My character in Xand's P-Files was trying to escape some police ponies. He had a decent lead, but was trying to something tricky like strengthen his hooves to run faster. My character has a really good Arcane, so I wasn't particularly worried, except I rolled a '1'. Cutie Mark failure, which Xand interpeted as me running into a lamp post.
Digo 18th Apr 2013, 7:13 AM edit delete reply
So basically you ended up with light-ning speed? ;)
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 7:46 AM edit delete reply
Your goal should be to be the first past the post, not through it!
Flashpoint 18th Apr 2013, 7:00 AM edit delete reply
Let Fluttershy have a shot at those guards, she'll get them to fight. Her Charisma is more than twice Rainbow's anyway.
darkgloomie 18th Apr 2013, 8:35 AM edit delete reply
given her usual luck with dice, FS'd be more likely to get them to fight by trying to pacify RD
Colin 18th Apr 2013, 8:05 AM edit delete reply
How's that hoof tasting, Rainbow?
Digo 18th Apr 2013, 9:20 AM edit delete reply
Needs a dash of Applejack. ;)
TrenWolfman 18th Apr 2013, 9:06 AM edit delete reply
In my first (and so far only) DnD session years ago, I played as a Goliath Barbarian. Large and scary fellow, as you can imagine. After all the introductory story bits were done, the party decided to enter a shop and buy some supplies. Being the big 'n bad Goliath that I was, I decided to use my Intimidation to give myself a little "discount" on the shopkeeper's somewhat high potion prices.

All I ended up doing was making the shopkeeper laugh at my Intimidation attempt and then make the potions even MORE expensive... but just for me only.

So yes, I can relate to this comic. :)
Malroth 18th Apr 2013, 3:11 PM edit delete reply
The first time i read this post I thought you wrote "Goblin Barbarian" not "Goliath" and was imagining a 3 foot tall skinny green barbarian trying to be scary.
Destrustor 18th Apr 2013, 7:03 PM edit delete reply
Hey! My grippli barbarian was awesome! Don't insult 3-foot-tall green skinned angry idiots wielding man-sized two-handed battleaxes! The results aren't fun for anyone involved.
SenaC 18th Apr 2013, 9:59 AM edit delete reply
Right. So, GMing. This mechanic/thief was sneaking around an airship that'd been hijacked. She slips into a passenger's room. She starts rooting around, and manages to come up with a high heel for a weapon about the time a goon is going room to room looking for stragglers. She pretty much fails her roll to hide, so I roll the goon. A one, so he failed his give a d@mn roll and moved on. X3
Other Guest 18th Apr 2013, 10:07 AM edit delete reply
And then Dash wakes up in the hospital.
Dust 18th Apr 2013, 10:23 AM made my day edit delete reply
thank you for the last panel it literally made my day/rest of the week
NeutralDemon 18th Apr 2013, 10:28 AM edit delete reply
I rolled a Nat 1 for my vs ac
My gun missed by a mile, I almost shot someone else
Mink of Snow 18th Apr 2013, 10:53 AM edit delete reply
Ugh why do dice have 1s?
Once my spell fizzed out and my snow white mink familiar became smoked
Another time I failed a diplomacy check and we had to run from the local mage school
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 12:26 PM edit delete reply
Why do dice all have ones?
Why don't they roll my way?
A high roll really could save the day,
So why do they all roll ones?
Raxon 18th Apr 2013, 7:07 PM edit delete reply
I have a D20 that's actually a D10.

I cut it in half so it always lands with the one pointing up.

It's for seduction rolls.
Raxon 18th Apr 2013, 11:38 AM edit delete reply
I have a bard character who made an intimidation check while singing, and got a spectacular success. Not on intimidate, he blew that horribly. He was casting fear and singing the incantation. That succeeded. Bards are remarkable.

In unrelated news, my family will be moving soon, and you know how family works. When you... obtain... a family, they have certain needs that must be fulfilled. They need help packing up and moving. After Saturday, I might not be available. I have to move my family so they won't be found because the rent got way too high for that crappy little place. 1400 a month for a tiny little place like that?

Yes. The rent is too high. That's the reason. It definitely has nothing to do with taxidermy and doll collections.
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 12:11 PM edit delete reply
Do you mean to say that you are going into permanent exile, Raxon, or are you just signalling a non-commercial break?
Raxon 18th Apr 2013, 12:18 PM edit delete reply
I should have internet most of the time I'm gone, but I'll be working hard, and will have very little time for internets. The plan is two weeks, but you know how plans are. You start out with a perfectly reasonable and sensible plan, and everything is going smoothly, until Norman Osborn intercepts your transmission, and frames you as a traitor. The next thing you know, your old buddy notHawkeye is after you, and YOU ARE THE MEAT!
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 12:27 PM edit delete reply
Two tigers in a cage full of meat rarely attempt to devour one another.

Curiously, that was the strangest bit of chess advice I have ever received.
Raxon 18th Apr 2013, 1:02 PM edit delete reply
Two tigers in a cage full of meat rarely attempt to devour each other.

Two men in a room full of glittering diamonds develop eye strain.

Zuche. If I am unable to be onlines, I will need you to carry on in silliness for me. It will be your job to be a horrible disturbing person. Don't let me down. I'm having such a good time. I'm having a ball.

I wanna make a supersonic man out of you.
Zuche 18th Apr 2013, 1:14 PM edit delete reply
Wait. Someone is relying on me? Raxon, you might be crazier than you think -- and it's pretty clear that you think a great deal!

Do what needs doing. Newbiespud will make sure we save you a seat.
Raxon 18th Apr 2013, 1:48 PM edit delete reply
Zuche, sit yoself down, I'm gonna lay some insight on ya, brotha!

If I had a reason for everything I did, I'd be crazy!
Digo 19th Apr 2013, 3:57 AM edit delete reply
Wait, if Raxon bestowed Zuche his powers and silliness while he's away, who's going to provide that wonderful Zuche style insight commentary?
Raxon 19th Apr 2013, 4:15 AM edit delete reply
Digo, are you familiar with the army reserve volunteer selection method?

You're the dude who wasn't paying attention when everyone else took a step back.
TheStratovarian 18th Apr 2013, 1:02 PM edit delete reply
Definitely miss you raxon. You are a right bright bit of humor in these comments that helped make FiD a joy to read each update.
Grrys 18th Apr 2013, 12:02 PM edit delete reply
Just a couple nights ago, we were fighting some kobolds. On my first attack roll in three weeks (I took a vacation to Australia), what do I roll? Nat 1. So the kobold grabs my kukri out of my hand, hits me, and then gives it back. Later on, I redeemed myself by cutting a neck open by throwing a kukri, then cutting off a hand by throwing the other kukri.

Saved the day with that, though
Urthdigger 19th Apr 2013, 1:42 AM edit delete reply
In a campaign I ran a while back, I had some NPCs intended to assist the party. One of them was a scout named Rick, specializing in things such as stealth, gathering information, that whole thing. Only problem was, he was cursed. Not by the story, but by the dice.

It seemed every time there was a pivotal moment, he'd roll a 1. This got the party kidnapped multiple times, and eventually turned what was originally a happy, upbeat and innocent character into a full blown angst magnet as he was well aware of how much of burden he was being to the party.

To make matters worse, he started rolling well once he was kidnapped by the enemy, driven insane by a magical failsafe (Long story), and set against the party.
Limpurtikles 19th Apr 2013, 2:29 AM edit delete reply
You guys want a story about botching? Here's my favourite, which also taught our group to never, EVER, start a game without at least one having skills in outdoor survival and/or any form of medical knowledge:

We were playing "Drakar och Demoner" (Dragons and Demons), a swdish RPG which you'd think is just a DnD rip-off, but it's actually rather different. The only thing similar is the titles, and that they're about a fantasy world (here based mostly on Scandinavian lore and geography).

(Also, the dice-system is a bit different but I'll be using DnD dice-terminology to make it easier to understand)

Anyway, I don't really remember the group, but I do remember not a single one of us knew anything about living outside city walls. So naturally our adventure took us to a cave we had to explore, and our first night camping brought us this gem of a scene when we tried to light the campfire with flint and tinder:
GM: Allright, roll for it.
RP1: ... 1.
GM: Hehe, okay, you miss and bury the hard piece of flint in your leg and take damage.
RP2 (me): Here, let me show you how it's done! *rolls*... 1.
GM (can hardly contain his laughter): YOU miss and accidentally make a big scratch in your arm and take damage too.
RP3: *rolls and "only" fails*

The GM actually called a mulligan on the entire scene because he was a nice guy ("you know what, forget all of that, you don't have to roll, you get it started after a while"), but also because it was so unbelievably stupid that we almost killed half the party at the beginning of the session while trying to light a campfire.
kriss1989 19th Apr 2013, 8:43 AM edit delete reply
You want crazy rolling? Then look no further than Davith Grim, the anti-bell curve warlock! He rolls either ridiculously high or horrendously low on almost every roll. On one roll he's convincing a crew of bloodthirsty pirates to join them on a nearly suicidal exchange for icecream. In another, he misses shooting a dragon that's like ten feet away from him. Another time he managed to blast a key gear with pinpoint accuracy to stop a clockwork monster. Another time while at a bar looking for information he almost caused an international incident.
PoisonClaw 19th Apr 2013, 5:52 PM edit delete reply
Bad rolls? Well, a while back, me and my Pathfinder group encountered a mythical and near-unkillable beast called a Jaquera, which got stronger with each blow made against it. After nearly a half hour of planning, we managed to lure it to a steep enough cliff, where it was my job to knock it off.

So I roll and get a 1. However, I had just leveled up so I now had a feat that allowed me to reroll a critical failure. I roll again...and fail again. In-game I did the equivalent of running into a solid wall and falling flat on my ass.

Oh, but it gets better! Prior to this, we had run into a rather noticeable person of interest, but only the bard had high enough knowledge to know anything about him. So of course he got a 1.

Sometime later, we run into him again. Bard rolls knowledge...1. Prior to fighting the Jaquera, we run into him a third time and he becomes even more suspicious when he pulls out a revolver, which considering guns are exceedingly rare to the point of mythical status in this particular campaign, this was a big thing. Bard rolls again and third verse, same as the first. It actually wasn't until the fifth chance that he finally got it.
Guest 19th Apr 2013, 10:18 PM edit delete reply
Okay, don't have an account (Yet,) but on the topic of hilariously low rolls and their consequences? I have a good one.

So our party had been infiltrating a hotel/space elevator (We worked it up, the thing had like 1000 floors or so...And REALLY fast elevators apparently.) Our mage had CMC'd destroying a mind-control device planted inside without considering the consequences, and we had to escape not just an angry cult, but angry guards/cops who were curious about just who made the hotel collapse in a ludicrously destructive fashion.

So we get to the airship our contact was using to get us around (And the GM was using to keep us on the rails,) but we get stopped for questioning. My character (a changeling spy posing as Feather Quill the Pegasus diplomat) does a fairly decent job of deflecting suspicion, but our Stealth Specialist...Rolls a Nat 1 on their persuasion.

He looks at all of us, says, "Well, there's one of two ways this is gonna happen, and I think this way is funnier."

...His character panics, and in a moment of 'can't shut up when scared,' tells the EVERYTHING we'd been up to. About 60% of it was illegal.

...So we get arrested, sent to Canterlot for questioning (Our GM had a bit...bleaker view of Equestria, if you haven't caught on by now) and thrown in a dungeon pending sentencing.

...We ended that campaign at level 2, mostly due to 2/3rds of the party being rendered unplayable.
Sus 19th Apr 2013, 11:00 PM edit delete reply
I got one from MERP.
See, the party was in front of this dark cave, not sure whether to venture inside. So, I come up with this brilliant idea: my wizard casts a light spell on an arrow and our ranger fires that into the cave, revealing everything inside. Everybody agrees this is probably a good idea and I make with the casting. That's a routine spell after all, what could go wrong?

"...I rolled a 2."

After a roll on the spell fumble table (considerably higher this time), the party has to make do with no light spell and one comatose wizard.

The poor wizard woke up with a serious headache three days later, having missed the episode at the cave entirely.
Icetailgreg 22nd Apr 2013, 12:41 PM edit delete reply
Oh god, I have the perfect botched roll story. So, the party was in an elven temple looking for a crown.They spot a group of elves and decide to sneak over and introduce them to their weapons. They all make their sneak rolls, all except the shifter druid, which turned into a spider. A SMALL spider, mind you. We like to think that she was wearing tap shoes while she was doing so.
Stephani D 5th May 2013, 5:56 PM edit delete reply
Once while playing Paranoia, I tried to take my Morning Wake Up pill with applesauce.
Rolled a 1.
GM decided that the apples didn't like being mashed, and punched me in the face. I was KO for 5 rounds. Didn't miss anything, but it was funny.
TechUnadept 9th Jul 2013, 12:04 AM Backfire edit delete reply
A good, sound beating later...
Dues 16th Feb 2014, 6:22 PM edit delete reply
It was my first night with a new group. I had no dice, so a player offered to let me borrow his spare pair, his 'cursed dice'. Naturally, I did not believe him.

My party was exploring a hidden temple, when we stumbled upon a trap, a painting of a Lovecraftian horror. My cleric immediately casts a spell to fortify the party's will saves. It's my first roll of the game. Naturally, I roll a 18 (the worst possible roll in GURPS).

Did I mention my cleric's was a disciple to a God of Insanity?

The DM ruled that we were safe from the painting... because we spent the next hour staring at all the pretty colors.

Every game after that I requested to borrow the cursed dice.