Page 505 - Versus the World

18th Oct 2014, 6:00 AM in Luna Eclipsed
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Versus the World
Average Rating: 5 (5 votes)
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 18th Oct 2014, 6:00 AM edit delete
In a very narrative and character focused game, the chance that one player might get sidelined increases. Not everyone gets to be the party face, of course, but sometimes it happens to one particular player a bit more than you want it to. One method to counter this is to give that sidelined player their own special mini-session that has an impact on the campaign.

Fallout is Dragons is... on its way! It seems I'm doing another all-nighter, and I could very well be putting the finishing touches on the episode by the time this comic launches. If that happens... Good morning!
Session 26: Libsyn YouTube


Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 6:01 AM edit delete reply
PlaceholderCalling it now. Fluttershy plays Zecora. Also, Spud, do you prefer if we post Halloween things on the first, or the 28th, since Halloween comes between two comics?
Newbiespud 18th Oct 2014, 6:13 AM edit delete reply
You mean the 30th? Yeah, probably might as well post it then. Post your special Halloween stuff whenever next week, really, but perhaps better to build up to it than stretch the event past its night of relevance.
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 6:19 AM edit delete reply
Right, the 30th. My bad. I hope you're looking forward to a new story. MWAHAHAHAHA!

Also, we can all tell, Fluttershy is either going top be Zecora of Luna. I can't see her playing Luna, though. Not unless DM got her really, really angry.
The Angry Vegan 18th Oct 2014, 7:01 AM edit delete reply
I think Rarity's already playing Luna anyways.
JiiKoo 18th Oct 2014, 7:05 AM edit delete reply
Umm, can't Fluttershy play Fluttershy, and Rarara's player go with Luna? I mean, Luna and Twilight do show up at Fluttershy's door in the episode, so there would be caps for this "something" the DM is figuring out.
The Old One 18th Oct 2014, 10:06 AM edit delete reply
Why wouldn't Fluttershy play Pip?
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 10:08 AM edit delete reply
Because Luna eats Pip halfway in.
Evilbob 18th Oct 2014, 9:14 PM edit delete reply
The best stories build anticipation.

I'd say if your story is long enough, then start posting your mini-chapters of terror to lead up to that climax then.
Raxon 19th Oct 2014, 5:39 AM edit delete reply
It is a short story. It could be longer to make it scarier, but I don't think that's really necessary.
Jobany 19th Oct 2014, 4:43 AM edit delete reply
I remember this episode Raxon. I'm pretty sure I know what Fluttershy will be upto. But don't want to post a spoiler.
Mykin 18th Oct 2014, 8:00 AM edit delete reply
I thought it was already foreshadowed that Rarity was going to play as Luna in this one. Though Fluttershy as Zecora I can see. It will be interesting to see her try to rhyme though. Hopefully she won't feel self-conscious while doing it though. I know I would.
Kinrah 18th Oct 2014, 8:54 AM edit delete reply
Isn't Zecora in prison, though? Didn't she get arrested at the end of the Bridle Gossip session?
Specter 18th Oct 2014, 11:49 AM edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject 18th Oct 2014, 1:32 PM Out on Good Behavior edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
I, uh, thought not, but I can't find the page I was gonna link. I could've sworn the players asked that same question and were told she was out doing community service...
Mykin 19th Oct 2014, 11:01 PM edit delete reply
Wait, doesn't Twilight and Luna visit Fluttershy in the episode at one point? What are the odds that, instead of playing another character, the DM just makes it that the characters visit Fluttershy's house a few times during the session? She gets to be involved and not have to worry about Nightmare Night and we get to watch as it horribly backfires, just like in the episode, win win. ^_^
Disloyal Subject 24th Oct 2014, 4:01 PM Chronomancy edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
Apparently I am a time wizard. What happened here?
Just, uh, ignore my above comment, new(er, or just a little behind) readers. Spoilers.
kriss1989 18th Oct 2014, 6:06 AM edit delete reply
Awww, poor Fluter-player whose name I don't know. Being scared of Halloween has got to suck.
Jphyper 18th Oct 2014, 8:01 AM edit delete reply
I can't imagine how much it would suck if my mother was like that, considering it's also her birthday.
Digo 18th Oct 2014, 7:00 AM edit delete reply
Oh to have your own mini-session... that would be great. :3
Specter 18th Oct 2014, 7:22 AM edit delete reply
I... er... um...

I actually have no idea how to proceed from what's on today's page. From the info provided, Fluttershy has no love for Nightmare Night (as shown in the show as well, no blame there), but I know more then certain that the DM wouldn't allow for her to get side-lined again (for being that good at playing her character)...

I am sure there are reasons she is afraid of this night...


... and I think I know why.
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 7:38 AM edit delete reply
Or perhaps she saw something on the internet.
Draxynnic 18th Oct 2014, 8:26 AM edit delete reply
Cat videos? That's what the internet is for, right?

That and stuff that is definitely NSFW...
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 9:11 AM edit delete reply
Yes. I posted a cat video. It's definitely nothing evil or horrifically gory. Just a simple, normal video of a singing cat. This is not reverse psycology, and I definitely didn't link to anything horrifying.

Heh, trust me.
Summoned Singer 18th Oct 2014, 10:56 AM edit delete reply
Summoned Singer
*sniff* so sad...
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 11:36 AM edit delete reply
What? It's not a sad video. It's a happy video.
Specter 18th Oct 2014, 11:46 AM edit delete reply
Depends on how you see it, or your definition of happy. I'm with Singer for this one.

Also, doesn't Fluttershy have Angel with her?
Malroth 19th Oct 2014, 12:32 AM edit delete reply
Sad because vocals were raised 2 octaves from the original version and the cute kitty is a poor substitute for the super hot gypsy bard goddess.
Disloyal Subject 18th Oct 2014, 2:11 PM No, Autocorrect, I Don't Mean Raxob edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
Drax, "The internet knows everything. It's like Kim Peek only rude and obsessed with pornography."
That was beautiful, Raxon, though I can see why those with tears to shed might shed them at that.
HonorableInsanity 18th Oct 2014, 12:44 PM edit delete reply
...I was waiting throughout that entire video for it to just suddenly become incredibly dark without having seen any of the replies to Raxon's first comment, and then, nothing came. I'm not sure whether I should be annoyed or congratulating you on tricking me like that.
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 2:22 PM edit delete reply
The kitten doesn't die in the end. The kitten finds a home. Pawprints at the end. Kitty didn't die, she left.

There are other reasons she might be crying.

And people wonder why I hate Ontario.

Edit: @HonorableInsanity I don't even have to do anything anymore. all I have to do is post a video, and you people troll yourselves. I'm just that good.
Mykin 18th Oct 2014, 8:24 AM edit delete reply
As a person who has always been permanently sidelined in almost every game I've been in, I know what it's like to be in Fluttershy's shoes...hooves...moving on. While I know good DMs will try to keep this to a minimum, bad DMs (which constitutes the majority of my DMs if that gives you an idea of where I'm coming from) either don't notice at all, don't care, or are doing it on purpose. At that point, you usually have two options, sit back and give moral support to the party while trying to squeeze in when you can (which is really hard to do when your both shy and terrified of making people angry) or you get up and leave. I always picked the first option, for some odd reason, so I think I can safely say I have the patience of a Saint at this point because of it.

I've had the spotlight twice over the multiple years I've played DnD: One was so negligible it might as well not have happened at all and the other one was last week, when my plan to spy on a camp as a prisoner backfired when my cleric proved he was too much of a pansy to even break stone and got sentenced to death. That ended with a lot of fire and made me actually feel like I was important to the group, a feeling I rarely get playing this game.

I guess I'm saying this to throw my own perspective in with what Spud said. As much fun as it is to watch people play, it's nice to be involved more often than not.

But then, I'm preaching to the choir here, eh?
Digo 18th Oct 2014, 9:54 AM edit delete reply
I mentioned that one failed Star Trek game where I was background furniture for most of it. I know that side-lined feeling from then.
Philadelphus 18th Oct 2014, 11:32 AM edit delete reply
Yeah, trying to keep everyone equally involved as a DM can be a tricky balancing act, and easy to get wrong. You have to balance between the outgoing gregarious types who will happily consume all the spotlight time you give them and plenty that you don't, and more shy players who would like to contribute but sometimes, like Fluttershy's player, need a little nudge.
FanOfMostEverything 18th Oct 2014, 11:42 AM edit delete reply
I'm kind of the mercy of my players' personalities. I don't really ask for much in the way of character backstory (at least, not since that ill-fated Exalted campaign,) so I don't exactly have a lot of hooks for character-centric quests.

I definitely need to fix this. Especially since it means that players have revealed character traits out of nowhere. Nothing game-breaking, thankfully, but two inexplicable hatreds: one of hedge mazes, one of gnomes. (And the gnome-hater decided to reveal this in the middle of a gnome city.)

Yeah, I definitely need to work on this...
Raxon 18th Oct 2014, 11:44 AM edit delete reply
I don't mind being sidelined for most of a session. Heck, last time I got sidelined, I made a deal with the DM. When my character rejoined the others, he leaped through the azmodeus patterned stained glass window of a cult cathedral and dropkicked a cultist, decapitating him and sending his head right into the balls of a cultist who was just about to plunge the dagger into the virgin's heart. I caught the dagger in mid air and sliced through the ropes.

I actually wrote down that my character's balls were six pounds of solid adamantine, and the DM said, "Sure, why not?"

The DM had no objections to this, as my character had been absent up to this point, due to being freaking lost.
Rokas 19th Oct 2014, 4:24 AM edit delete reply
Raxon 19th Oct 2014, 5:41 AM edit delete reply
The DM allowed me to describe my own entry. As long as I succeeded with my rolls, he was cool with it.
LegendofMoriad 18th Oct 2014, 12:25 PM sidelining edit delete reply
I know, as a player, I've been sidelined. It wasn't enjoyable, but it was my own fault. I've also seen a lot of people sidelined for things not their fault. I'll admit that at the moment, I'm sidelining at least one person in a campaign, but I blame that on letting my player base get out of control. I was unable/unwilling to say no or trim people, and now the group averages 10. One extended combat took 3+ hours.

Oh. Dear. Celestia.
Never again.

Dear Princess Celestia,
I will keep the focus on my players, making sure they have a fun time. I will prevent the party from getting too big, if it becomes necessary, so that everyone is able to enjoy the game to its full extent. Especially since I have at least 3 people willing to DM other games.
Your faithful student,
Super Kami Guru 19th Oct 2014, 1:03 AM edit delete reply

I hear you on that one Legend. Our group currently averages between 8-10 players based on who remembered that week, and it's usually the same two people that missed. We had a single combat session which took around 4+ hours and it was still going. The DM ultimately ended up just calling the session.
LegendofMoriad 19th Oct 2014, 11:54 PM strangely familiar edit delete reply
Do the names Mad Dog, Lady in Gold, and Lord Aldebaran of Paladins ring any bells?

Because you just described last week's game. Scarily so.
Darkside 18th Oct 2014, 1:13 PM edit delete reply
I was once sidelined because I was so dead tired from work I fell asleep. We basically explained it as my character being in shock, seeing as how his boss (who was also the person he looked up to the most in the world) had just died in front of him.
Disloyal Subject 18th Oct 2014, 2:07 PM GMs, DMs, QMs, PHs, & STs edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
I've been really lucky to get skilled, experienced DMs who do a great job of getting everyone some screentime and letting the more outgoing players take the lead without dominating, and I like to think I've done alright at that myself on the handful of occasions I've taken the helm as DM. I guess reading as many storytimes as I do gives me some ideas of what not to do, and insecurity helps keep me humble enough to remember those lessons.
The only time I've felt particularly sidelined was in my first 2 Dark Heresy combats, and that was just because my sniper build was doing massive damage every other round instead of something every round, and rounds were taking agonizingly long as the veteran players knocked the dust off and we newbies learned the system. That cleared up by session 3... Of course, that's when we started fighting giant robots, but panic is way more fun than boredom.
FretSteelstrings 18th Oct 2014, 3:11 PM edit delete reply
Since I am currently in my first group, I won't have a lot to say, but if anything, if I get sidelined it's because I choose to be. My DM is great at making sure everyone has a chance to get the spotlight. However, as a rogue, I tend to avoid taking the spotlight anyway.
Super_Big_Mac 18th Oct 2014, 5:49 PM What, no Story Time? edit delete reply
Tell us about something that happened in a game where one of the players (or even just their character) wouldn't join in due to a fairly valid or standard reason, not including "because I'm (Alignment)."
kriss1989 18th Oct 2014, 6:14 PM Request edit delete reply
123notit, I am still requesting a copy of your MH 4E home brew material.
Steeeve 18th Oct 2014, 6:40 PM edit delete reply
there is fic that (to explain part of the plot) tells why Flutters fears Nightmare Night.

Apparently she used to like it, and dressed up, (as a cute animal gave out candy, attended the festival.. until one year a stranger came, and she invited him home...
that year she learned a Fatal Lesson. There are indeed real monsters- as she herself had become one. Vampire Flutters.
the kicker of the plot was that the WHOLE TOWN knew and didn't care. they even helped her out. (blood drive, etc)
Raxon 19th Oct 2014, 9:07 AM edit delete reply
I had a vampire that did that once. The blood drive thing, that is.

Turns out that even restricted to human blood, in a decent sized city, my vampire can eat like a king, and use his vast intellect and increased speed and strength to make a tidy profit, even after paying the townsfolk for their blood.
Super_Big_Mac 19th Oct 2014, 10:24 AM edit delete reply
"The Vampire Delivers"

>increased speed and strength

mfw my first thought was of a vampire shooting through the night, before landing on a doorstep on the outskirts of town, ringing the doorbell, and then... "Jimmy Johns! Here's your sandwiches!"
Raxon 19th Oct 2014, 10:33 AM edit delete reply
...Mine was actually a member in good standing of the city guard. He was very, very protective of his city.

Occasionally, the city guard would find vampires mutilated and impaled on pikes, left out to die when the sun came up.

Just because he was good, that doesn't mean he wasn't a territorial bastard.
Zuche 18th Oct 2014, 8:37 PM edit delete reply
I liked the conclusion to this comic. It's reassuring to hear things like that.
Trepa 19th Oct 2014, 8:06 AM edit delete reply
I do Halloween that way too. It's not fun, but it beats being scared half to death and looking like a laughingstock. As far as holidays go, April Fool's Day is worse.
Super_Big_Mac 19th Oct 2014, 10:25 AM edit delete reply
I don't like Fool's Day myself anymore, but that's more because someone in my family died that day in '08, and I was the one who answered the Doctor's phone call.

Kinda ruined the holiday for me, y'know?
Mykin 19th Oct 2014, 1:32 PM edit delete reply
@Super_Big_Mac: My condolences. I hope things have been better for you and your family since then.

@Trepa: I don't recognize April Fool's Day as a holiday, if only because no one actually does anything on that day. Halloween is starting to become that way too. Not that I'll miss it, I already have conventions to replace it as a place I can go to to dress up and look silly in front of thousands of other people that are doing the same thing. Now if only I didn't have to spend money to go to a place to spend money, then I'd be set!
aqua 19th Oct 2014, 10:15 PM edit delete reply
grandma on Halloween leaves me feeling similar
Shanaar 19th Oct 2014, 12:02 PM edit delete reply
Luckily for me, a large part of mine group have been a DM or still are. It helps as they kinda know that ever one has a opinon about something.
But yeah stuff like that sucks. First time I played, all I did with mine charcter was participated in combat and thats it. It also did not help being new to the group and seeing as I am kinda shy around new people. Also, there was not enough beer. For some reason, the more I drink, the more I start talking.
Akouma 19th Oct 2014, 8:53 PM edit delete reply
I play mostly character-driven games, and yeah sometimes people get sidelined pretty hard. I once played in a session where someone had killed a noble in the palace we were staying at. To keep everyone safe and maybe weed out the killer, they take all the other nobles and lock them in the ballroom with heavy guard.

My character was a noble. I spent the entire session locked in a room desperately trying to make my own entertainment only to have the DM forcibly tear the screen away from me every time because my actions weren't going to further the plot. It got to the point where I made a couple of deliberate problem-player decisions just to do *something*. For example, my character went over to where all of our weapons had been checked, and stole his back. (Naturally, the DM told that a guard approached me to inform me of this five minutes later, notices I'm wearing my weapons because they're too large to realistically hide, and I'm forced to return them. Before I can make a big scene about how the palace security is obviously inept like I wanted to, our DM changes scenes.)

Or more recently in the game I play on Thursday. My character is a late-comer to the group. It's actually pretty common for us to split the party when players have business in another town or just want some personal time. We do it a lot. (Hell, one of our players took multiple weeks off in game-time to go out to the middle of nowhere where his character's girlfriend was stationed in an attempt to get laid.) My character has yet to have an opportunity to take one of these fun little side outings. So after we wrap up a big story that saw us come face to face with a horrifying new threat, my character asks for a few weeks of leave time to visit his children and grandchildren since said horrifying new threat may mean it will be his last chance. Since the person he has to ask for it from is another player (actually that same guy who ran off to try and get laid, amusingly enough), it's granted so long as I wait until we return to base before I split off. So naturally literally the very SECOND we reach home, a blizzard rolls in which heralds the coming of that new threat to this area. This wouldn't bother me, except they just conquered a massive stretch of new territory and would legitimately need to put some time and effort into establishing an occupation.

Now obviously, those are the worst case, nightmare scenarios. More realistically it's a character-driven kind of sandbox where the players' actions are the impetus for the plot so players who don't really know what to do without at least a little railing get kinda' sidelined but are still present. I'm totally okay with being one of the ones that gets kind of sidelined sometimes (I am one of those in the game from the second example, it's just that was particularly egregious and annoying for me), but I am NOT okay with walking away from an RPG session and having to say "I did/accomplished literally nothing and my time would have been better spent at home playing video games."
silvadel 19th Oct 2014, 11:20 PM edit delete reply
Flutters seems to be channeling the yellow one here a bit from Mentally Advanced.
j-eagle12212012 20th Oct 2014, 8:49 PM edit delete reply
I spent the last 3 days going over the comments on every single post looking for a set of comments involving Phoenix Wright and I can't find them.... I know I saw them on here somewhere but where... am I losing it or can someone confirm that they saw them as well? Please!?!
Disloyal Subject 20th Oct 2014, 11:50 PM Godspeed, Jeagle edit delete reply
Disloyal Subject
Try Google Advanced Search of the domain ( requiring the term 'Wright' (even if it's not in the comment itself, someone's bound to have replied with it).
edit: 6 results. I'll leave the combing through them to you; I haven't slept in days and I have a Halloween costume and 5 essays to work on.
j-eagle12212012 21st Oct 2014, 4:40 PM edit delete reply
Thanks ^_^ sadly I was mistaken I must have seen it elsewhere
Guest 10th Sep 2015, 10:57 PM edit delete reply
For fuck's sake, stop being such a sad sack piece of shit. If you're going to bring everyone else down with your faggy depression, just stop showing up.