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Sticking To Your Guns

Smack dab in the middle of a game, you find yourself in some unusual position. Maybe you’ve been stripped down to nothing and are running around in your underwear. Maybe you find yourself amid a harem who has all the information you need. These situations aren’t unlikely within the context of any role playing game. However, if you’ve created a unique character, you may not be able to take full advantage of possible “outs” the DM gives you.

First, don’t sweat it. These “outs” are designed in the game many times as a test. Using your brain to find another “out” will be that much sweeter to both yourself and the DM. In some circumstances, the DM wants you to find another way out.

Situations like these are why many players don’t like detailed backgrounds for their characters. For example, a character who’s sworn to only wear one color until his quest has been fulfilled can’t wear the guards’ armor to sneak into the palace/out of the dungeon. Some players feel this limits them, and frankly, they’re right. However, like the old saying goes, “there’s more than one way to skin a cat”. There’s usually more than one way to do most anything.

After creating a detailed background, these limits are not necessarily a bad thing. They create a new challenge for you and the rest of your party. Working together to overcome these things, you and your party may actually accomplish more than you realize is possible. Perhaps in trying to scale the walls of the evil king’s castle, you mean up with a resistance movement who offers to help smuggle you in. This group could become a powerful ally in your fighter against the evil king!

Just because something seems “limiting” doesn’t make it a bad thing. Stick to your guns, and the rewards in the long run will be worth it. A memorable character who other players talk about, cool “gifts” from the DM, and possibly increase XP make it all worth it in my experience. Try it out a few times. You may find you enjoy it!

August 3, 2008 - Posted by | RPG |


  1. Characters in situations where they must make tough choices, like sticking with their self-imposed oaths or using an easier way, make for good play.

    One important thing, as a GM, is to not select a right answer in such situations. Player are not mind readers (usually). Actions have consequences, but do not punish a player for making a decision you don’t like.

    Comment by Tommi | August 7, 2008 | Reply

  2. Agreed.

    I tend to reward creative thinking when I GM, and most of the GM’s I’ve played with have as well thankfully. There’s ALWAYS more than one way to skin a cat 😉

    Comment by Tom | August 7, 2008 | Reply

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