GM Workshop #2: “Players; or ‘those guys that keep ruining my game'”

Hello all, and welcome to another edition of GM Workshop. This week I’ll be looking at the players; specifically, what a ‘That Guy’ is, how to deal with on.

The thing that us Storytellers like to do most when we’re all together (aside from plotting the players’ demises, of course) is to brag/complain about our parties. Who is the best roleplayer, who has the best or worst luck, who is a blatant powergamer, who is That Guy, etcetera. But what, exactly, is a That Guy?

‘That Guy’ is a rather nebulous concept, a phrase that gets bandied about quite a few gaming circles. Usually it is in the form of horror stories – ‘That Guy’ is the one who is on their smartphone/laptop/DS the entire session, or has the cheetoh-stained fingers and insists on touching all of your precious rulebooks, or insists he/she knows everything there is to know about everything regarding the rules/setting, or the one who insists on hitting on every other character in the game, ever. ‘That Guy’, pure and simple, is the one that nobody really wants to play with that much. Virtually every group has one – maybe it’s the friend/partner of one of your friends, or a friend/partner of the GM, or the sibling of one of the players. Maybe it’s the guy that seems to live at the LGS. Or maybe your gaming group is so strapped for new members that you can’t afford to turn away anyone, no matter how repulsive you find them.

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GM Workshop #1: “Where do I begin?

Hello all, and welcome to the first installment of KingGheedorah’s GM workshop! Every week I will be looking at a few issues that we – Game Masters, Dungeon Masters, Seneschals, Marshals, Storytellers and other titles both generic and awesome for game-runner-guy – face on a regular basis.

As a slight introduction and to produce my pedigree, I’ll get into a little bit of my own pen and paper gaming experience. I’ve played Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 since my junior highschool year, in addition to branching off into as many other systems as I can get my hands on. My current favourites are the Dark Heresy D100 system by Fantasy Flight Games and the Legend of the Five Rings fourth edition d10 die pool system by Alderac Entertainment Group, though I am also a big fan of the New World of Darkness Storyteller d10 system, Riddle of Steel, Mouse Guard, Paranoia, Deadlands, Dogs in the Vinyard… it goes on and on. I’ve been running a Dark Heresy group on a weekly (occasionally bi-weekly) basis for going on two years, and have run fairly lengthy and successful campaigns in a multitude of other systems.

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