Author Topic: Metagaming  (Read 9858 times)

xHero

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Metagaming
« on: September 03, 2009, 04:45:13 AM »
I've been dealing with a bit of drama in my D&D game but all the players love the story and don't want to quit.
I've decided that I am going to try the next session with a metagaming ban. I wanted to hear your opinions and experience in running a game with no metagaming, specifiacally in D&D. Or is this just a train wreck waiting to happen?
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Tadanori Oyama

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #1 on: September 03, 2009, 04:55:08 AM »
Not so much a wreak as not leaving the station. Cutting metagame out completely is nearly impossible when the group is used to having it. Besides, in D&D you need the metagame, at least a little, to survive.

clockworkjoe

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #2 on: September 03, 2009, 12:33:46 PM »
It's better to focus on specific behavior than banning all metagaming - there's a blur between gaming and metagaming anyway. What caused all the drama?

Maze

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #3 on: September 03, 2009, 01:09:31 PM »
One advice might be talking to the players and encouraging them to roll their various knowledge checks and rewarding them extra XP when using in-game knowledge to solve situation.

xHero

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2009, 09:58:15 PM »
It's better to focus on specific behavior than banning all metagaming - there's a blur between gaming and metagaming anyway. What caused all the drama?
   Well there hasn't been an issue with OOC knowledge or anything, and they've been real good about making obviously harmful decisions just based on what their characters would do. The problem is based mostly in the moments prior to some major diplomatic situations in which the players throw around all their ideas and pitch angles. I've got two very experienced players who can be a bit intimidating with my two newer gamers. In fact, last session, one player "Self-Destruct" (new to the forums) was explaining his theories on what the group should say and one of the "Experienced" gamers told him to "Shut the fuck up" and cut him off to make his point. The game had to be put on hold and an apology ensued. This is the first time such a direct confrontation had come out of the game, but, the old vs. new gamer drama has been building since our first session. Everyone enjoys the game to much to make an issue out of it and nobody wants to quit. I figured if I tried a session with zero metagaming this would result in the players having to think and act exclusively for themselves if not in a "think tank" situation. Hopefully eliminating the issues we've been having.
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Tadanori Oyama

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2009, 10:48:29 PM »
That sounds like one of your players being a dick, not a problem with metagaming. I mean, it isn't even about the game, it's about the players.

I'd suggest either giving everybody a speech about behavior at the table, speaking to people alone and away from the table, or employing the WASP method Ross established in the podcast and just sweep everything under the table and pretend it never happened so you can keep gaming.

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #6 on: September 05, 2009, 01:11:05 AM »
I would not abandon metagaming as your player, who most certainly is a dick, would freak out even moreso if the newer player made a decision that couldn't be "taken back" that would effect the actual characters.

Dude sounds like a dude who would be really unhappy and perceive it as "losing" if this type of a situation would come up, which is ridiculous since role playing should mostly be collaborative with the competition coming from being able to do the most kickass thing in-game.

If you want to cut down discussion, throw things at them that makes life more...interesting as they go back and forth and make some in-game consequences that will cut down the deliberation.
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xHero

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2009, 01:23:53 AM »
 I guess I painted a pretty bad picture of the "Experienced" gamer. He's a real great guy and very gaming oriented. I suppose it's just clashing personalities at the table... I appreciate all the advice you've all shared thus far.
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xHero

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #8 on: September 08, 2009, 10:24:39 PM »
For the record, I ran my game yesterday. I tried the whole anti-metagaming thing... It was amazing.

Let me rewind:

I'm running Ross' New World Primer in 3.5. For this session I (admittedly) focused on the previously mention "experienced gamers" funny thing is that one of them: Dorn [Nomadic Hexblade, blacksmith] is a slave to the merchant prince Jayden Price. Dorn's player is constantly attentive when we game and (I'm ashamed to say) has more notes than I do on this game. The other player Nogard [Human Dragon Shaman, Apothecary's Apprentice and obviously Dragon spelled backwards] is the total opposite of Dorn's Player in that he refuses to take notes and spends most of his time nose in PHB and not paying attention.

At the mention of banning metagaming for this session the players were intrigued. I hand Dorn's player an aged note, that no other player saw, stating that he must appear in the stead of Jayden in a legal dispute (Followers of the New World Actual Play should know what this means.) I was banking on Nogard's lack of attentiveness to lead him on a wild goose chase when he was told by the apothecary that he needed him to attend a legal dispute for him and that he would give him "partnership" in the shop.

As the first legal charter has not been taken into effect yet the dispute was to be dealt with in an arena. The funny thing was that I waited for a smoke break to tell Nogard of the legal matter with Jayden. So Nogard spends the week before the trial attempting to intimidate merchants for information regarding Jayden and making plans to kill him on his heavily guarded yacht. All the other players are practically red in the face with a mixture of laughter and frustration as once he asked the first merchant "Who is Jayden!?!" They all knew what I was doing.

Day of the "Trial"

Nogard never asked how legal proceedings were dealt with in the new world, and his player hated diplomatic situations. He sat in a dark room where he was briefed by the apothecary and the captain of the town. "Don't worry boy, we've got healers at bay... do your best" then the doors opened and the sun blinded him as he was pushed into a makeshift arena with the crowd roaring and an immense blurry figure in front of him. The player had Nogard charge into the ring throwing his trident at his opponent. I asked him to roll initiative and asked to borrow Dorn's players d20 (he rolled it onto the table to roll initiative, winking at me.) Nogard's ranged attack missed. I then say "Dorn, Nogard's trident clangs noisily to your side, what do you do?"

The look on their faces was priceless. I appreciate everyone's advice and admit that it takes a crucial aspect of gameplay out of the ring. One that I''m certain all the players now greatly appreciate.

 
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Tadanori Oyama

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #9 on: September 08, 2009, 10:44:33 PM »
Dorn [Nomadic Hexblade, blacksmith]

So... how does that work? Does he carry his forge in a backpack?

xHero

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Re: Metagaming
« Reply #10 on: September 09, 2009, 02:38:57 AM »
Haha... Not quite. I took the "Nomadic" race from the Dragonlance campaign setting. I was just implying that he makes money for his slave master (Jayden Price) through this trade... But I do believe a blacksmith's bag of forging is in the works now, thanks.
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