Question of the Day, July 28, 2010

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Power Gamer man, I want to be the master, to be the best! [insert pokemon theme]

I think it would be interesting to compare how a player first became involved with DnD with the type of player they are - my hypothesis is that (in general) if someone moves from fantasy literature to role-playing, they become storytellers or actors (maybe explorers); if they move from board/card/video games to PnP role-playing, they become power-gamers or slayers; if they are drafted into role-playing by friends, they become watchers or instigators.

It's not a complete theory - and exceptions would be rampant - but I suspect the tendencies would prove statistically significant.

Whether or not this is totally accurate, it fits exactly for my current situation. I got into roleplaying because a friend of mine had a Discworld based GURPS game, and I was excited to be involved in such a thing. I've been all about the story since. Meanwhile, I pulled my girlfriend into it, it she is about the biggest Instigator you'd see. Which is funny, because in the game of Paranoia we played, she survived and I died!

I am my group's resident min-maxer, who probably knows more about the details of the other players character sheets than the other players do. In fact, two sessions back I was actually put in charge of making several characters "more awesome" because our DM was getting tired of our time honored "lie on the floor and bleed threateningly" offensive strategy (and it came to light that one player hadn't made up a new character sheet since 3rd level and had no idea what his stats really were).

In character I am very circumspect and cautious, except when it would be least convenient for everyone or when I get bored, and then I'm suicidally reckless and charge headlong into glorious battle. Oh yeah, I'm also the party paladin - I'm so awesome at my job that my deity personally appeared one time to congratulate me! And by "congratulate", I mean "cuss out at great length using a startling variety of slurs". Oh well, that just tells me that I haven't done enough to spread the good word of Bahamut, dragon god of justice! Asking hostile NPCs if they've heard the good word of Bahamut is kind of my spiel you see.

We have a term for power gamers in my group. It's "Get out of my house and never darken my door again." Sorry to say, but power gamers make the game less fun for everyone else.

Me I'm an explorer. I'll often ignore the GM's plot if possible to go find other things to see. That's gotten me in trouble more times than I can count, but it always leads somewhere interesting.

Oh and there's no option for Rules Lawyers because everyone knows Rules Lawyers should be burned at the stake.

I'm that guy who tries to break the game and get everyone of track by creating scenarios the DM isn't prepared for.

For example - trying to kidnap villagers, setting fire to random things, adopting a wild drake that attacked us as a pet.

I think it would be interesting to compare how a player first became involved with DnD with the type of player they are - my hypothesis is that (in general) if someone moves from fantasy literature to role-playing, they become storytellers or actors (maybe explorers); if they move from board/card/video games to PnP role-playing, they become power-gamers or slayers; if they are drafted into role-playing by friends, they become watchers or instigators.

A few friends of mine and I got bored on our long bus ride from middle school and one suggested we try a DnD game (we had already played a ton of MtG on the seats). Only played once on the bus but we've been pen-and-paper gamers since.

I'm a bit of a rules lawyer (burn the heretic I know) but that was because I never played spell casters in 3.X so I had to learn the various combat rules and in 4e I DM so I'm a bit of a headache to my second group's DM some days and a savior others since I know most rules off the top of my head. We do have some uses you know

I'm a Slayer/Instigator/Watcher. I enjoy playing to relax and not have to think too much so I make characters that can best be described as "Built like a brick sh*t-house, and twice as thick" which leads me to sometimes being an instigator.

Winner. I like to finish the adventure with the best rewards and in most positive wway for my character. As such I tend to irritate the GM by acting out of what is expected, brake his game and try to wheel it in the direction I want. To do that you need a streetwise, down to earth character and hope there are no gods around.

I constantly try to push the limits of the game, by using the environment to kill/do stuff. My problem is that I discovered HL2 before DnD...

Needless to say, when I try to kill a DMs Uber Troll by attacking a chandelier, and setting fire to the curtains, and jumping out the window - they get pissed, and try to kill me off first.


Eric the Orange:
There's a word that we use for what you call "power gamer"s in the RPG world, it's called munchkin. I find it sad when some one is trying to "win" a PnP RPG, totally missing the point.

Hmmm, I didn't take "power gamer" that way - I thought it just meant a focus on building the most effective character you can, the kind of person who pores over feats and mulls over interactions between powers before choosing them.

In contrast, for instance, I once played with a guy who entertained himself by concocting the most ridiculous multiclass combos because they'd be "fun" - like his barbarian/bard "bardbarian." Our cleric didn't find a cloth-wearing (because it was stylish), great-axe wielding heal sink very amusing, and the bardbarian enjoyed a fairly short life and excruciating death.

I'm 60% Storyteller, 30% Explorer and 10% Slayer. Because sometimes, just sometimes, you have to kill some bitches.

The storyline's the most important bit though. Without that, you're just rolling dice and saying "I hit the Orc. 12 damage, he's dead? Lockpicking check for the door?". Which is a lot less cool than the image of a city nymph blowing apart an Orc with dual magnums so she can break into a facility that's been releasing electricity-wielding zombies onto her turf.

Ahh, D20 modern was awesome.


I wish to do as much cool shit as is humanly(or Elfly, or Trolly) possible. That includes killing things, disarming(or outrunning) traps and making people think that I am breaking some sort of rule by the things that I do.

I've never really played a tabletop RPG, but if I were to play one I'd probably be combination of the Actor and the Storyteller.

Just slay stuff, eventually your problems will be solved that way

Actor, for certs. The kind of actor that sometimes mis-aims fireballs when rules-lawyers and munchkins get in melee, or just aren't looking. I DM sometimes, so I take this kind of thing personal.

Thinker. I'm a survivalist, and he who doesn't think, doesn't survive long. Our GM had no problem with killing you off for stupidity. Of course, it's been years since I've played...

I like to act out my character, to an extent. Im not gonna break out a Shakespearean accent.

The problem here is that Actor and Storyteller go hand in hand. Just sad I can't pick both *shrug*

Instigator, but there's about 4 more in that list I could tick off.

Depending on the GM and party, I probably won't stick to just provoking npc's though.
To the joy of many, I've managed to get my entire party killed about 15 minutes after character creation. Honestly though, challenging that wizard even though he was obviously too much to handle for our measly group was totally in-character for me, so I totally blame the GM for even giving me the choice.

Slayer. I like to kill things, especially humanoids.
All my characters have one thing in common: they are very vindictive, thus when someone spills my drink I spill their organs.

Oh, I'm also kind of a number cruncher, which I don't think is exactly a power gamer (I don't play to be the best, I play to have fun). And speaking of DnD, rules lawyers are necessary and welcome. In other games (WoD or Paranoia) it's OK to bend the rules often. But DnD is a game that's all about the rules, if you break them there's surely someone you are being unfair to.

While I don't play DnD but am eager learn, I think I probably would be an explorer.

Watcher I guess. While I really would love to roleplay and do in play by post games on forums, it feels far to awkward for me to get into another role in person. And while I do powergame to an extent, that certainly isn't why I play D&D, nor is it my focus. In my D&D sessions, I just hang out with friends, and do whatever they want to do.

i don't even play DnD but if it's anything like an open-world RPG, i would explore the hell out of it.

I'm touting the Exploration aspect, alongside the Storytelling and Experience aspects.

Storyteller/Actor. As a DM, I try to keep both of these going at once.

For this polls purpose i'd consider myself instigator-actor. I try to immerse myself into the character i am roleplaying, avoiding meta-game as much as possible usually spending hours on evaluating psyche profile of my characters more than actual statistic and combat prowess. I always try to make flawed characters, especially in mental department.
Same time i create my characters with one purpose mostly - to mess with the Game Masters. I will always opt for the most risky most insane options, pushing my characters to extreme situations It's the best way to fully show of the characters psyche and if i can somehow cause a little chaos in the plot, it's even better.


dungeons and dragons' name makes me cry a little every time i hear it...

my fear of all things nerdy/geeky aside, i would probably be a watcher. i have never been into doing *stuff* with other people. i prefer to just talk and drink. just hangout.

Don't have friend to play DnD with :(

I am both a Story focused player, and a Risk Taker. But since this is a focus on me as a player, not a GM, I went with Risk Taker. Many of my players do things the safe way. So I mix things up by being the daredevil, the provoker, the chaos element.

I chose Watcher, but I'm also big on story and conversation with NPCs. Consider me a Storyteller/Watcher/Actor combination.

D&D is all about the story telling, one of oldest human traditions there is.

Instigator: I like to poke the NPCs to see how far "off-script" we can get the DM, even if it's just a distraction like a bar fight or deciding to ask out the local mayor's wife to see just what kind of trouble that could cause. Sure, it can derail a game so it's best used sparingly but it's still fun to improvise when we can.

I've never played DnD, though not for a lack of wanting to, (just a lack of willing friends). But, in most games that my friends and I play, I tend to be an instigator. I love pushing things forward, no matter the cost.

For example, me and my three friend were playing Nazi Zombies last night, and we had the perfect system going, we were all camping up on the catwalk in Der Reise, taking turns emptying our clips into the endless undead horde. When I felt like things were getting too systematic, I'd throw a monkey bomb, book it to the teleporter, and hightail it to the mainframe. Of course, my friends would then follow me to try and save my soon-to-be-zombie-chow-ass, and, then we are all stuck in the center of the map having an epic, high tension battle, getting attacked from all sides. Then, the round ends, I get an earful for almost getting them all killed, and we head back to the catwalk for a few rounds. But they all know its my bursts of idiocy that keep the game interesting.

whats dnd?

*Standing on a chair and speaking in a deep voice* Yngvar. Barbarian.


That was a fun night ^^ I miss DnD >.> I should make friends so I can play it again

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