A Discouraging Actual Play Recounting
I am so tired of Tim’s Gaming Dungeon! Every Saturday night is Open Gaming Night, where folks can come in and use some of the tables in back to play whatever game they want. I’ve tried to run Nobilis a few times, but it seems like I never quite get there before Tim has all the tables reserved. Maybe next week!
Anyhow, I thought it would be sort of a lark to jump into one of the Dungeons & Dragons games that some of the less-awakened gamers were running. They had pregenerated characters, which I didn’t mind—I do so enjoy a challenge! I made sure to ask a lot of questions about my character’s background, motivation—I don’t think Greg the DM was used to such an outstanding, thoughtful gamer, because after about a half hour, he waved his hand and said, “Dude, your relative introspection level or whatever is whatever you want it to be. Or an 18. Let’s just start gaming”.
So, anyhow, we set off—I was the party’s dwarf fighter, and there was an elven cleric, a human ranger, and a gnome wizard, too, if I recall. Our party’s quest involved retrieving some rubies from a crypt under this large metropolis—lame, huh? I asked why he didn’t just include a big red dragon while he was at it lol! No one else said anything, but I think they were on my side.
We get into the bottom of the crypt, and the GM starts to describe the room we’re in. Once he paused, I started adding details, too, like a large acid pit in the middle of the room and shredded purple curtains on the wall and a large glowing battleaxe stuck in a giant dragon skull. The GM stopped the game and said, “What the hell are you doing, dude?”
I rolled my eyes at the poor schlub. “It’s called shared narrative control, and it helps build better stories!”
“Well stop it,” is all he said.
So after that, a large Ogre burst through the door and starts tearing apart our party. The cleric wanted to try a spell she’d been saving, but I had a better plan. “I take out my alchemy set and mix up a batch of Ogre Poison, put it in a flask, and throw it at him!”
The GM said, “What the hell? A) You’d didn’t take ANY of the skills or equipment to be able to do that, and B) it isn’t your turn!”
Exasperated at this 20-year veteran ignaramus, I said, “Who cares about skills? I’m adding it in to make the story better, or are you not aware of the Professor’s exhaustive papers on the matter? And don’t tell me you’re still using initiative! What are you people, 13?” (As it turns out, one of them was).
Well, that pretty much ended the game right there. Tim came over and suggested that I find a group more ready to receive advanced gaming theory. He suggested The Gamertopia on
I bet they didn’t get anywhere without my Ogre Poison.