Home forum Help Search Login Register

Site Sections

User Info

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?
May 14, 2021, 11:29:23 PM

Login with username, password and session length

Recent Topics

Site Tips

If you liked something, say so, if you think it can be bettered, say so, commenting on threads and giving ideas for the site are always welcome.
Pages: [1]
Send this topic Print
Author Topic: Making Heroic PCs...act heroically  (Read 3776 times)
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
TheStranger
Lightbearer
*

Spell Energy / Taint +2/-0
Posts: 60


« on: December 31, 2006, 01:06:41 AM »

Or  "How to get your players to stand up and fight".

I have a  HUGE problem.  My players picked the  most advantageous  Heroic Paths, have been noted by the  Sahi Priests as Heroes chosen by Fate and have hardly ever died in  any of my  campaigns.  The Players avoid fights, even easy ones unless they can  Kobold the  Shadow's minions ( "Kobold" being a   verb meaning "outnumbering your opponents, two to one") and even then are leary and   go overboard with the  buffs.   Wait until next time with the  Astriaxes  come calling with their Legate masters in tow.

How do you get  your PCs to act like heroes?

My next attempt is  to have the  Dornish traitors, who have mistaken the PCs for members of their own armed forces, ambushed by Dornish  rebels.  Hopefully this will shame the Players into action.
Logged
Nifelhein
Administrator
*****

Spell Energy / Taint +22/-0
Gender: Male
Posts: 2,118


Whisper's Will


« Reply #1 on: December 31, 2006, 07:57:36 AM »

TheStranger,

There is no magical solution to your problem, but you can start giving them the reward of their own actions instead, NPCs won't treat them based on prophecies, but on those, they won't be placing their hope on them anymore. You can try and see whether they want to become heroes or just stay alive by placing situations where they can save other, help others and reduce evil but still putting themselves at risk.

If they do not act, if they turn it away, perhaps you should start thinking if you should tempt them with the dark side, use a legate to thank them, let an orc páss by and mock them, reduce them to simple criminals, turn coats, cowards, just what most in Eredane already are.

If they dislike that, they will either become agents to the shadow, striking a deal to whoever is available and in power to make such a thing or will step into an heroic position. Out of character there isnt really much you can do. Also, make sure you do place some easy fightd randomly, with large numbers, if they do not take those, then change the next fight for one with very few opponents, but very skilled ones.

Show them the difference between skill and numbers and how skill counts far more than how many they are facing. In a standard D&D game I am playing for 5 years now my bladesinger character is now a gladiator in an arena of the astral plane, alongside an archer of the group we were taken to a battle of 90 "soldiers" against an horde of orcs (800 of them, including 9 war rhinos), we did not win, but while the 90 soldiers were able to take a 100 orcs we killed the rhinos and 400 orcs on our own, the masters of the arena did not let us die after that, we were too valuable, Mind Flayers know better than to kill good slaves on an arena...

Also, try to avoid a quick turn coat by someone they comne to trust, make them feel comfortable, let them trust, make the turn coat become a friend to them, and when a moment of dramatic importance shows itself, he turns them, much like Lando Calrissian does in the original star wars trilogy, perhaps without the rescue part. By making him slowly give away information on them and then have him turn them to the shadow you can show how he regrets what he is doing, but he has to, he ahs no choice, his family... his troops... they are all depending on that single action...

If that all does not work, wel, tell them the game is over, for if they will play the every day people of the setting, then there is no reason to bother with it, at all.
Logged

"We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men; and among those fibers, as sympathetic threads, our actions run as causes, and they come back to us as effects."
 - Attributed to Herman Melville.
Albert
Insurgent Commander
***

Spell Energy / Taint +7/-2
Gender: Male
Posts: 433


From the north


« Reply #2 on: December 31, 2006, 07:59:51 AM »

If the PCs rarely die or get severly wounded your players are probably being a bit overcautios, however, it isn't nescesarrily bad rp to avoid combat from time to time. You must give them good reasons to fight, any intelligent being would opt not to charge the evil orcs if he could help it. Only when winning the combat truly matters in some way should PCs be eager to charge in.

Make them choose between fighting and saving innocents, or running away and leaving less combative innocents to sure and prolonged death.
Or maybe the promise of personal power, or the opening to deal some part of the shadow a shattering blow would be more alluring.

Ask your players what their characters goals are, what do they want to accomplish with their inhherently dangerous lives as insurgents (or behind enemy lines agents if they're fey)?
Quote from: Napoleon Bonaparte
A man does not have himself killed for a half-pence a day or for a petty distinction. You must speak to the soul in order to electrify him.
Logged

"You ever get the feeling that the universe is a vast, impersonal emptiness that exists only to hurt you?"
"Yes, it's how we know the DM is doing his job."
- 8 Bit Theatre
Y
Heepa-Heepa


Spell Energy / Taint +0/-0
Posts: 24


« Reply #3 on: December 31, 2006, 10:21:14 AM »

Since this is a metagame problem, I would suggest a metagame solution: experience points. Declare, preferably after due notice and discussion, that you will be changing your XP rewards method. Avoid group XP rewards for defeating obstacles, and reward heroic behaviour. You might want to switch to a Glory Point mechanic rather than remaining with XP.  This will work best if you print out sheets with the XP system and hand them out to the players, and hand out/email sheets with the breakdown of each character's rewards for the previous session.

A simple method(based on the Chi/Rho method):
* Upon defeating a monster in an encounter, and NOT upon circumventing it or whatever, each character gains 300 XP per character level, times the sum of the squares of each monster's CR, divided by the sum of the squares of each PCs level. Count only PCs that risked themselves in the fight - if you weren't attacked, you aren't part of the fight for these purposes.
   300 x level x (Monster CR^2) /(PC CR^2)
* If a character makes a heroic action during the session, such as remaining behind to cover the other PC's escape or drawing enemy fire, he receives an immediate XP reward. 100 XP per level should do well I think, perhaps as much as 300 for big heroic stunts.
* There are no group awards, there are no story awards, there are no awards for overcoming obstacles not by combat, there are no awards for defeating opponents that aren't of the Shadow or something like that.

More advanced systems, based on Glory Points or whatever, are too complex for me to wing on the fly. There are plenty around - like the Pyrrhic Victory points floating around here (which I think is very cool, BTW).

I find that XP rewards are a good way to steer the tale to where you want it to go. It depends on your players, of course, but generally. Having the "score" of the past session in your hands as you start a new one is a good motivator to "get a better score" this time, so I'd recommend printing our score-sheets and handing them as the session begins; but it's a bit work-intensive.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2006, 10:29:12 AM by Y » Logged
Mask
Heepa-Heepa


Spell Energy / Taint +0/-0
Gender: Male
Posts: 41


Sans danger, pas de gloire


« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2007, 05:04:45 AM »

My first sessions were like that too, I encouraged my PCs to act heroically just by making some things a little easier.

Should they want to make an heroic move during an execution of a rebel leader to help him free himself or just prevent the shadow servants from torturing him for hours by killing him straightfully themselves, I did not raise the DC as high as I should and allowed them a few sentences to defy the soldiers and launched a big chase in the city/wilderness the second after.

A few more XPs for the most heroic of them and there it goes.
They also feel heroic, and act heroic when people recognize them as such. Have a commoner whisper one of their name with respect or a bunch of villagers give one of them a glorious nickname and they'll get hooked. Just give them a little hand when they want too and they'll become more daring.
After a dozen sessions, the trap is set. You can now brutally kill one of those heroes-wannabe and show them that defying the Shadow requires plannning and resources. Wink

My PCs are now more heroic when they feel safe and lower their heads the rest of the time, keeping hope alive but not yet quite enough to change it into a devouring flame that would consume the entire lands.
Logged

"Some are born to sweet delight, some are born to endless night"
"In absentia luci tenebrae vincunt"


Harrowed
Editor
*****

Spell Energy / Taint +6/-1
Posts: 1,856



« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2007, 04:41:31 PM »

I have a  HUGE problem.  My players picked the  most advantageous  Heroic Paths, have been noted by the Sahi Priests as Heroes chosen by Fate and have hardly ever died in any of my  campaigns.  The Players avoid fights, even easy ones unless they can Kobold the  Shadow's minions ( "Kobold" being a verb meaning "outnumbering your opponents, two to one") and even then are leary and go overboard with the  buffs.   Wait until next time with the  Astriaxes come calling with their Legate masters in tow.

How do you get  your PCs to act like heroes?

I don't try, but that's my game style. I let the players generate what they want, character wise, and roll with what ever they come up with.

But that doesn't help you.

- Look at your player's characters and see what motivations you can pull at from their backgrounds.
- Try to give NPC's value to them, then endanger them ... give the PC the opportinuity to save him/her. If they succeed have them treated like Heroes ... that should reinforce a heroic frame of mind.
Logged

I like the cut of your jib. How do I subscribe to your newsletter?
-RPG.net
TheStranger
Lightbearer
*

Spell Energy / Taint +2/-0
Posts: 60


« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2007, 10:31:12 PM »

Its a  bit heavy handed bu based upon what each of you have said I have asked my players to think aobut their characters goals and how they think they can attain them during the Shadow's onslaught. For the Heavy Handed part I have deemed that XP handed out during "heroic" situations; situations wherein the PCs face danger to aid  the greater good is  double normal XP while any  XP given for non-heroic actions is half of normal Xp, and any grey areas result in normal XP awards.
Logged
Albert
Insurgent Commander
***

Spell Energy / Taint +7/-2
Gender: Male
Posts: 433


From the north


« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2007, 02:11:47 PM »

Sounds like a good combination. The focus on the characters goals should allow for heroics justified by the PCs belief in a cause, whereas the increased xp will help the number-conscious players along.

Be advised though, double XP is a lot if your players start acting heroically all the time, once they've got the hang of it you should adjust your modifier to a more sustainable level (unless you're looking for quick progression to go with your heroics of course).
Logged
Nifelhein
Administrator
*****

Spell Energy / Taint +22/-0
Gender: Male
Posts: 2,118


Whisper's Will


« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2007, 11:35:17 AM »

I have also introduced hero points, they are gained when you do truly heroic things and can save you from death, give you a sure attack, and other cool things. You seem to have a good thing going too, tell us how it fares. Wink
Logged
Pages: [1]
Send this topic Print
Against the Shadow  |  Forum  |  Midnight & RPGs  |  GM's Corner (Moderators: Bleak Knight, Glacialis)  |  Topic: Making Heroic PCs...act heroically
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
AtS Dark Mercury design by Nifelhein, based on the Mercury theme by Bloc
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.112 seconds with 28 queries.
TinyPortal © 2005-2011