Page 954 - Unlikely Story

31st Aug 2017, 6:00 AM in The Best Night Ever, Part 1
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Unlikely Story
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Newbiespud 31st Aug 2017, 6:00 AM edit delete
Any tabletop stories about that? Having trouble proving your character can do what they do? Or maybe stories of proving some gormless doubters wrong in spectacular ways.

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



ANW 31st Aug 2017, 6:12 AM edit delete reply
Tomorrow is September.
I have a bit of plan for this one.
Every update until the 30th, I will post 1 2 or 3 questions.
The first one to get the question right will earn a MMMM cupcake.
At the end of the month, who ever gets the most right will get a special prize.
The questions will be about the comic MLP and tabletop games.
First questions appears in 2 hours.
albedoequals1 31st Aug 2017, 6:26 AM edit delete reply
I haven't had to prove my character's abilities to an NPC that I can recall, but I have had times I wanted to keep them secret. Like when I was a ranger and my favored enemy included the rest of the party and myself. :P
Digo Dragon 31st Aug 2017, 6:42 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Pretty much any earth pony in an RPG system? XD

I mean, when the other races can fly or naturally cast spells, how do you keep up with that? What do you gotta do as a relatively mundane earth pony to stand out just as well as the others? turns out quite a lot of work is involved.
Robin Bobcat 31st Aug 2017, 12:16 PM edit delete reply
Or just, say, lift up the corner of a house?
Digo Dragon 31st Aug 2017, 4:36 PM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
How I wish some systems would just do SOMETHING like super strength.
Registered 31st Aug 2017, 6:53 PM edit delete reply
In a game I used to run, Earth Ponies were carnivores and pretty good ones at that.

They had high str and would use that to leap ungodly far and high, snatching gryphons out of the air (pegasi were mostly spared from them because they lived out on the sea eating mostly fish). They'd also used rock-throwing to often just outright kill prey or at least destroy their shields (in the case of unicorns).

If that tactic fails, they can enter combat directly. Getting hoof stomped hurt and their teeth were designed to regrow easily and rip whole chunks out of their victims should said victim manage to get them off, which didn't happen all too often.
A side-effect of their high con was also that they didn't have to worry about most poisons and diseases, so their salvia wasn't antibacterial or anything and would likely infect their prey with diseases. That also allowed them to have a good relationship with a plant called "Ratberries", which were harmless (though also not nutritious) to earth ponies, but a deadly anticoagulant for other races.

Finally, if all else fails, their high endurance made them second-to-none persistence hunters, not to mention that their magic allowed them to require 1/10th of the food and water a normal creature of their size needs to live... And only about half the sleep. They also get to store fat better.

Typically, when they fid a herd of herbivores, they start throwing rocks to get a few quick kills, dash out to try biting additional prey, injuring and infecting or outright killing them until they flee. Then, if they got only one per pack or less, they will unhinge their jaws to swallow the dead or unconscious and helpless victims whole, split up and go to pursue one of the other members of the prey-herd until it dies of exhaustion and they can eat it too.

I think the stone-throwing would be the most applicable in your situation, but a high poison-resistance can work too if you work with poisons yourself.
Digo Dragon 1st Sep 2017, 7:18 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Wow, that rock throwing sure sounds awesome. Would be hilarious for my earth pony doctor to be chucking some of those around. "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but watch this boulder crush your head!" :D

Yeah there isn't anything in the racial stats that define earth ponies for the game I'm in, so I've had to focus my build to reflect something that an earth pony would be good at. high strength and endurance, poison resistances, and medical skills that are second to none. But it's stuff that a build with another pony type could do as well. Just so happens that no one else did such a build so... eh. Kinda works due to being the only one doing it.

When I made my write up for D&D 5e, I made Earth ponies pretty darn good, with skill bonuses, a +2 stat bonus applicable where they choose, and access to feats early. No fancy magical mechanics like what pegasi and unicorns have, but a solid racial choice for any class build.
Registered 1st Sep 2017, 9:06 AM edit delete reply
Ah, so they are basically the humans of ponykind?
Dusk Raven 1st Sep 2017, 10:33 AM edit delete reply
You're not the only one to try and convert ponies to 5e - I've seen another conversion by Cheezedoodle96 on DeviantART. I've really been wanting to play in a game of MLP 5e... combined with a Mystara for 5e fan book, so I can set a game in the setting of my favorite MLPfic of all time, a crossover with the D&D setting of Mystara.

But that aside, regarding the topic, I actually made an earth pony character in Pony Tales who was a pony druid... in a different way from Fluttershy. While Flutters talks to animals, Wormwood could speak to plants and the earth itself, causing weather to change or terrain to change shape.

Or summon Earthwyrms, though I never got to do that... both games he was in burned out early...
Pablo360 31st Aug 2017, 7:39 AM edit delete reply
One time in a one-shot I needed my thief character to prove to the guards that he'd be helpful in investigating a terror attack just so he could be released and allowed to even participate in the adventure, so I immediately started an Elementary-style deduction of the attacker's motive, means of attack, and likely next move. I was so thorough that one of the guards thought I had to be one of the terrorists, but since otherwise there wouldn't be a story they still let me tag along with the rest of the party.
Blyndpwn 31st Aug 2017, 11:05 AM edit delete reply
My sister DM's for me and a bunch of friends, and during part of the character creation process she asked each of us to come up with a "One Unique Thing" for each of our characters. Seizing on that opportunity, I created a sorcerer who is actually a N dimensional architect who put on a 3 dimensional suit so he could follow his mentor's murderer to the game world. This has lead to more than a little hilarity, but to answer the question:

Our campaign's big bad cast a giant curse on the kingdom causing space and time to warp along the kingdom's river. One of the symptoms of the curse is the river itself rising into the air, leaving the riverbed dry, but the water flowing several yards above the ground. While we were traveling to find one of the curse's nexis points so we could cure it, we ran into a ranger.

This ranger belongs to an "elite" group, that our ranger recognized as the place the collective ruling body of the rangers sends people when they really don't want to deal with them anymore. This guy was exemplary of that. His big idea to get the river down to earth was to snag it with his fishing pole. No magic, just a mundane fishing pole. We convinced him to try to find a magic fishing pole and he runs off whooping in excitement.

We find him further down the path, stuck in a tree because he was trying to set a trap for squirrels to interrogate about the best source for a magic fishing pole. After we cut him down we agree (reluctantly) that he should travel with us to the next town because leaving him unsupervised in the middle of the forest was to irresponsible not to be legally actionable. During the trip, I tried to explain how the curse worked in terms he could understand, he was convinced I had no idea what I was talking about.

The party, at this point, is aware of my interesting backstory, and I've explained the spacial warping to other NPC's thus far with little difficulty, but this guy... He was convinced space hadn't actually warped, the river was just looking for a change and he could talk it back into resuming its routine if he could just find the right bait for his fishing pole. Finally I broke.

"You idiot!" I yelled, "You're dealing with powers you can not possibly understand! I realize your world hasn't discovered 4 dimensional magic yet, but in your case, if you were trying to light a FIRE I'd tell you the same!"

I role diplomacy... I flub diplomacy. The ranger puts his hand on my shoulder and says, "I know this is scary, but I'm a ranger. I know what I'm doing."

The barbarian had to carry me the rest of the way to town to keep him from being strangled.
BunBun299 31st Aug 2017, 9:49 PM edit delete reply
I can't help but imagine that ranger being played by Dave Batista. Deliver that line like something Drax the Destroyer would say.
Digo Dragon 1st Sep 2017, 7:19 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Okay, now I'm hearing the line in his voice too.
Blyndpwn 1st Sep 2017, 2:06 PM edit delete reply
It fits. It really does.
Robin Bobcat 31st Aug 2017, 12:13 PM edit delete reply
Was in an OWoD Mage game. I needed to convince a vampire that I did in fact need to see his boss, was not a walking breach of the masquerade, that I was NOT a snack, and that I actually knew what the hell I was talking about.

Me: *sigh* "#$&@ it. He isnt listening, is he? Fine. I'm at zero Paradox and plenty of power. Vulgar magic time."
GM: "Okay, what are you doing?"
Me: *rolling dice* "Anvil."
GM: "Come again?"
Me: "An anvil falls from the skies, landing between us. It says 'ACME' on the side."
GM: "... Right. He is trying very hard to not appear completely ... He's looking between the anvil, the sky and you."
Me: "You will take me to your boss now."
aerion111 2nd Sep 2017, 12:13 PM edit delete reply
When you're an oWoD mage, there's times to be subtle.
There's times where you must slip between the cracks, making changes so subtle you're not even sure they happened yourself, in order to shape the world how you want in the long term.

And then there are times where you need to make an ACME anvil fall out of the sky, paradox be damned, because the bloody vampires don't want to listen! :P

In short, bravo *clap, clap* You have clearly understood how to be a great mage.
Skorzah 31st Aug 2017, 9:08 PM edit delete reply
One time our group's paladin was put on trial for claiming to be a paladin. It was a pretty funny trial.
Guest 1st Sep 2017, 2:32 AM edit delete reply
Tell us more!
Skorzah 1st Sep 2017, 7:50 AM edit delete reply
Okay, so this was a pathfinder campaign, and it was set in a world where the good gods have grown weak, the evil gods have grown stronger, and the entire world was flooded with negative energy, leading to a heck of a lot of undead hordes. Now, given that they're not just the kind of stupid zombies, but a lot of intelligent ones as well, they had the sense to start taking out the biggest threat to them: divine casters.

So we make it to Alkenstar, one of the few remaining safe havens (also the gun and machine capital of the world), and our paladin immediately starts going around looking for his church, and explaining that he's a paladin looking to finish his training. Apparently this is a significant problem that this city has. Given how rare divine casters are now, especially paladins, they get kind of special treatment. This leads to people pretending to be paladins to get that special treatment.

So he gets arrested and has no clue why, and is brought before the religious council and the duchess (a rich spoiled kid who has no idea how to run a city). And they make him prove what he's capable of, while this one guy consistantly harasses and nitpicks the paladin, trying to make him fail anyway (definitely working for villain. Also I got him to be named Starscream). Eventually it worked, and everyone was allowed to go home, the paladin with military rank and a home in the temple of his god.
aerion111 1st Sep 2017, 7:13 AM edit delete reply
Well, for starters, whenever I play a cocky character there's always some point where I try an ability and fail - That's just statistics. I'd need pretty good luck to succeed at every 'first try' for every ability.
That's usually met with a 'Heh, guess you can't do that after all' attitude.
But nothing comes to mind as far as particularly funny examples.

However, there was the cat-girl mercenary I made in GURPS, mostly for the second prompt but with elements of the first: (Sorry for getting lengthy, but I'm long of speech :P As seen in some of my previous posts on this site, even ones in response to others. 'TL;DR of it: Cat-girl is actually good fighter, but easily underestimated outside of combat. Now and then, she enters combat.'. Besides, there's no single scenes here that is interesting in a vacuum, they're only interesting as a whole, I feel. And when else will I get a chance to talk about her? There's no doubt stuff that could be left out, but brevity is hard... But do feel free to comment on the length if you feel the need <.< If I get a bunch of 'eh, that's way too long for here', I'll try to resist the impulse in the future. If it's well recieved, obviously it'll encourage me :P)
The setting had many irrelevant details, but relevantly one of the 'factions' (the one I chose) was a wide range of beast-people (each of which generally had their own culture and so on)
I chose lynx, because I like the european lynx and I didn't want to choose anything big-and-scary.
So, already I'm small by 'Gazan' standards (the beast-men race), and because I'm not one of the tech-savvy wolves I start with a lower tech-level than the wolf kingdom I'm in, so I'm also technologically impaired.
There's talk about the city's army heading out soon to fight one of the other kingdoms (I forget if it was another beast race, or one of the other factions - the beasts in-fight a lot, as a faction-trait)
So I talk to various guards, trying to find out who is in charge of getting people to fight - this leads to a brief positive scene, where I demonstrate my knowledge of the exotic mount the guards have leashed up (the lynx-gazan, who I had a lot of influence over lore-wise since it wasn't one of the big pre-made races, were inspired by the native people of northern Scandinavia ('Same' in Norwegian, pronounced sah-meh, more or less. Dunno how to translate it) - so, they were a minor (as in, kingdom-less) race that made a living herding the exact animals the guards use as mounts; They're almost as hardworking and obedient as horses, but are more agile, can go on more terrain (two-toed ungulate, not an equine, so a better grip on rocks and such), and are prettier too (colorful feather-like tails) so they're better mounts than any real-world equivalent. Probably braver too)
Of course, even this positive scene involves my small cat-girl showing that she loves the colorful horse-replacements, though more as a nerd going 'ooh, shiny!' over something they care/know a lot about.
Eventually I'm interrupted by another player-character that's overheard the discussion.
She acts as though she has some influence over the various leaders of the city (because she does, which I already knew OOC), and after a bit of confusion where I have to clear up what I want (I don't want to swear loyalty as a soldier, I want to be hired short-term as a fighter and believe I'm good enough to be worth it) she helps me set up a meeting with someone.
Then there's a good dozen posts from either side, as me and some Lt. or whatever discuss the matter in detail over dinner - their treat, I couldn't afford the restourant's prices - where my character of course has a 'easy to read' personality trait, on top of a few other 'not good at the whole 'people' thing' traits. Trouble lying (in addition to being easily read), trouble reading others, and so on.
So she's rambling, fidgeting nervously, and generally making a mess of explaining herself.
And purring; I've 'purring' down as an annoying habit (I think the word the book uses is 'odious'), so when she's happy she's vibrating slightly and making noise, being about as annoying as a restless foot-tapper or nervous hummer.
But she does ultimately get across that she was initially trained to take over for her father, so she's a pretty good rider (probably significantly better than any of the Lt.'s soldiers not specifically trained to be great riders - so any 'grunt' riders) - and if it's not too big an inconvenience, could she please meet the animal before anyone asks her to ride it; She spouts a few points about how friendship is important to co-operation, even with animals, so she needs to introduce herself peacefully and not just jump on it.
But she wasn't a great herder (she's actually quite bad at it, even stat-wise - she'd almost certainly be the worst herder in the tribe, but better than any non-herdsmen at least), so the moment her siblings showed both talent and interest regarding it, she went 'Whelp, guess I don't have to be a herder! I'll leave it to you lot, bros!' and spent the next years working out, training in a few different areas that might be useful skills to have later, and getting into fights. A lot of fights. Like, her life from then was helping her family with chores in the morning, working out and/or training mid-day while others worked, then finding someone (ideally a good fighter) to fight towards the afternoon - and it's not like she was the only kid in the tribe that enjoyed fighting. In some ways, this is probably when she first proved the doubters wrong, even if it's in a flashback; With PC-level stats, specialized towards fighting, it's unlikely any NPC-level kids (even ones slightly older) would win against her, except maybe one or two exceptionally unlucky fights on her part (weak from an illness that hadn't shown any symptoms yet, stepping on a hidden nail, whatever) - though they probably did manage to get revenge 'outside the ring', if they tried, since she's not as great there.
There's some questioning regarding her specific skills (can she use a sword and shield? Sword, no, shield, yes. Can she fight in a line? She's not great at it, but hopefully?, etcetera), plus she's decidedly not loyal to the kingdom (not even a citizen) - and she needs to stop talking herself down; She's here to convince him to hire her, not the other way around.
Some of her good points get mentioned too, though; Good fighter and rider, as mentioned, but also quick to recover from injury (like a cat :P), good at falling (so safe(r) climbing stuff), and a good enough hunter that while she's not asking to LEAD any hunting parties (the army's best veteran hunters are probably better than her) she's confident in being able to help hunt without screwing it up.
The torture of a socially awkward person (me) playing a (differently) social awkward person (my character) for, as mentioned, post after post of just dialogue, finally ends as he promises to set up a sparring match the next day so I can prove myself, then he excuses himself and leaves.
Everyone's done with scenes for the day (game-day - OOC this took probably over a week. It was play-by-post, and as mentioned; A bunch of back and fort dialogue) so it's off to a cheap inn for my character - no breakfast at the inn, mind; Too expensive, even if my character can't exactly fight on an empty stomach.
Then I discover the city gives out free food (for some reason - PR purposes?), and not just to the poor but to anyone who shows up wanting it. (Actually, I think my character already knew about it, and had probably taken advantage of the offer before - either way, she found out about it at some point)
My character is already incapable of keeping up her living standards (because living-expenses stay the same, but income decreases with tech-level, my off-screen income (for when PCs work a 'day job' while waiting for the next adventure) would be lower than the minimum non-poor expenses) so she decides 'hey, free food means I've more time to get a(n on-screen, presumably-well-paying) job as a mercenary without going broke'
Of course, when she goes to get the food she meets the woman from yesterday (who's a mage) - So now she has to essentially beg food from another PC. Who, being a freaking mage, can of course just wave her hand and not just fill my character's bowl-cup with gruel (she travels light; Utensils have to serve dual purposes) but also add seasoning to make it edible. And to be clear; This isn't a character built on more points than mine, at least to my knowledge. She just put points into having political power, and some basic mage spells (like Create Food - there's generally a Create spell for each type of magic, like Create Water to fill waterskins or Create Fire to light campfires, and Food is a type of magic. The seasoning is a seperate spell, I think).
But if the characters were on a screen, it'd be hard to consider them equals when she's floating unto rooftops (another PC, some monkey-man, had been causing trouble there earlier - so she floated up to confront him), dressed in elegant clothes, lives in the freaking CASTLE, and is now just making food appear with a wave of her hand after my character had been spending a while trying to figure out how to make ends meet :P
Food eaten, my character (Eir - getting tired of no names :P Eir Aud specifically - it means something about cats, I think, but I forgot exactly what or what language) heads off to go beat someone up in public. Specifically, the sparring match.
There's more uncomfort for me and Eir, as I have to write a realistic portrayal of her getting into a military training area (where the sparring match was supposed to be), without getting kicked out, when she has little to no idea of military protocol (she has a single point in it, and the stat behind it isn't great, so she's not untrained but she's as green as a trained person can be)
Somehow she doesn't get in too much trouble, and even manages to get into the fight with a training weapon that'll work as a flail (did I not mention that? :P Of course she's even a flail user, a weapon generally seen as impractically hard to fight with)
Immediately, the whole 'atmosphere' of my character's different; None of the social flaws give her penalties to combat (not even being easier to read - it's her emotions, not her intented attacks, that are readable) so now she's suddenly a short but well-trained warrior.
The other guys' training sword bounces off her shield, she grazes him with an attack, repeat a couple of times.
Then I decide to try out the all-out-attack option, forgoing defense in favor of attacking, and the flail shatters the other guys' sword when he tries to parry (that's why I went with the flail: With GURPS rules, heavier weapons can more easily shatter lighter weapons. Flails are quite heavy)
Eir goes back to being a nervous cat-girl long enough to appologize (several times) for destroying the sword, and it's agreed they'll continue hand-to-hand (I think it was the plan to fight hand-to-hand later anyway)
Drop the flail, become a mighty lynx warrior again (did ya know lynx and wolves compete for reindeer, despite lynx being solitary and smaller than wolves, and wolves being pack animals?), and knock him to the floor in a few rounds, taking minimal damage.
Then immediately be a nervous cat-girl again, while the other soldiers stare slack-jawed.

The game didn't live long enough for Eir to see any real combat, unfortunately, but the above repeated itself a few times with bandits, an attempt at mounted combat I think we didn't do right rules-wise, and a few non-combat tests of her skills.
Chakat Firepaw 1st Sep 2017, 11:59 PM edit delete reply
"'Same' in Norwegian, pronounced sah-meh, more or less. Dunno how to translate it"

As a proper noun, it doesn't have to be translated. It's spelled Sami in English, (same pronunciation.
aerion111 2nd Sep 2017, 4:11 AM edit delete reply
Well, I'm not called a 'Norwegian' in my native language :P The country's 'Norge', I am 'norsk', and so on.
How do I know the 'Sami' don't have a different name in English? (And apparently they do, but a very similar one)
Akouma 2nd Sep 2017, 9:39 AM edit delete reply
So one of my favorite characters I ever played in my friends' superhero game was Al'Deck of Many Things. He was a deity from another plane playing superhero on Earth. (Think one part Thor and one part Booster Gold.) One of his main powers and the only one he could use without a failure chance was the ability to travel between planes and take passengers if he wanted.

So after we beat the main plot of that campaign, we each got an epilogue scene. Mine was a major TV interview where he hoped to clarify that his memoirs detailing the events of hid life culminating in the campaign we just played are actually non-fiction, because they were released under a psuedonym. The interviewer asks for proof that I'm a deity, I lean in and ask him what it would take. He goes "bring me and and the entire camera crew to this other plane you claid exists."

So without missing a beat I teleport us all to his home plane's equivalent of Mt. Olympus, hang out for a minute, introduce him to a few other local gods, then poof us back. The interviewer sits back in his chair, stunned, and turns to the audience and goes "he's actually telling the truth folks."