I"m having issues with a player who solves every problem with violence, particularly murder, lets call him Joe. Even if it means death of the innocence. I'd like to incentivize Joe to change his ways in a cool character development way instead of just punishing him. I had an idea for a battleaxe blessed by the gods that gives + to hit or something. But when Joe picks up this battleaxe the power fades and it becomes a regular battleaxe. The next time Joe sleeps he will be greeted with a vision, a Goddess telling him of the wicked path he is on. And the Joe must redeem himself to uncover the true power of the battleaxe. The battleaxe will slowly become stronger and stronger the more Joe does "righteous" things.
Do you think this could be cool way to insensitive Joe to stop randomly killing innocent NPCs, potential even becoming a cool RP generator. Could this be to powerful? To pigeon holing?
Post by DM Lord Neptune on Aug 17, 2017 14:24:02 GMT
Well, there are a few ways to go about this, but usually the best way is to talk to the player one on one. It's a tricky situation because it sounds like he is having a blast playing the Murder Hobo (I still never understood that term), but it could very well derail your campaign and/or ruin the fun of the others at the table.
If everyone around the table is having fun with it, too, though, maybe that's the type of game that they all want to play. And one thing I figured out is that GMing usually means "help your players to have fun by providing a story or environment for them to enjoy however they see fit." That means that it may be ok for his character to be this way, but you'd have to adjust the story (and his alignment) to fit.
I'm guessing he may be one of the only ones with the murder hobo mentality, though, and it may be ruining the game a bit for everyone else. At this point, a compromise would be a good thing to come up with. Definitely talk with the player beforehand, but if they just want to kill things, try to see if they would be willing to just not kill innocent people and, instead, be ok with an interesting RP way to focus that "skill set" on the bad guys instead, such as your battleaxe idea.
The main point is, you'll need to work with him on it. He's obviously having fun, and it may even just be a matter of the video game mentality. If you want him to still have fun along with the rest of the people in the group, then compromise and an honest discussion are the best ways to go about it. You could even provide the entire group with a set of weapons that do what you say, but the group needs to be righteous as a whole, so if one bad egg (him) is doing this stuff, the power level drains in all of the weapons. This way, everyone feels more powerful and everyone has incentive to help keep him on a righteous path, which would be a very interesting RP moment.
But, I'd say, whatever you do, don't just drop this on him in game. It may make them feel singled out among the group.
DM Lord Neptune (AKA Ryan) Keep on Dungeon Mastering indeed.
He is definitely enjoying himself, and the rest of the party enjoys having this off his rocker aggressive guy to spice things up. Or accidentally ruin well laid plans.... Until he beheads a innocent servent, putting his head in the bag, and then hitting another servent with said head. I'll definitely talk to him and see how that goes. Hopefully he won't need further proding
There's an old, old tabletop gaming adage: "In-game actions have in-game consequences"
What is the system of law in your world, or in the regions where your players act? Are there no rangers or paladinic Orders dedicated to protecting the innocent? Don't those killed have families, brothers, aunts, children? Wouldn't your players actions bend them to a life of vengeance? What about those killed? Do they pray before death? Do they petition a higher power in their final Outer Plane for justice?
You don't need to go for a metaphysical road to perdition. Any 'Good' aligned society would have instruments and organizations dedicated to hunting down and eliminating 'Evil' characters, as this PC seems to be. A notorious warrior walking the land in search of her brother's killer is a trope of every literary genre; make up an NPC revenant to track this character down. Just read through the MM- there is no shortage of Archons or vengeful angels whose portfolio is specifically divine retribution on un-repentant sinners.
You could still go with a manifestation of future justice. I picture a Ghost of Xmas Future scenario, where the player is thrust into the future of his path. You can do this as a solo adventure and reveal it as a dream later, or have the entire party participate. If you go the party route, perhaps have the other PCs die one by one to develop actual OOC tension (revealing later that it was all a dream.... or was it?). One fun thing with dream sequences is when you take settings or facets of the dream and have the PC encounter them in-game later to create a sense of foreboding, of prophecy coming to pass.
Just don't go easy on him. Some players just push a DM to see what they can get away with.
I agree. You should make believable in-game consequences for in-game actions. Everything from a platoon of elite guards to a squad of assassin bounty hunters are viable options in this situation. If it is a lesson you are trying to teach, forget about CR.