Quick and Easy Fix's for DnD and Rp

Redbeard67

Registered User
Validated User
Am Currently Playing with Action Point, which give the PC's some control over the fical fate of dice, but really no involvement besides recognizing that it is a "Oh Shit" moment.

Was going to have the Players Name/Traitorize their Action Points, and have to add some rationalization to using them. ( The Goal here is for the player to make an effort that is consistant with how they concieved the character [The Naming is their own] and consistant with it [The Rationalization] ) More or less any effort is gonna make it ( probably abitrated by group with Dm Veto ) but it takes a bit more effort than Oh Noes it's the Save or Die , Roll dem extra D6's

Example Luke the Ranger, has some Action Points at Level 1, Things he named Masterful Chef, Awesomeness, and Crackshot ( Presumably there being a rule against duplicates) Things Go Sour, and he wants to use his Action Points ( for the mechanical bonus) and is now aiding consistancy threw his rationalization?
I'm gearing up for a new campaign and have been thinking of something similar, inspired by Riddle of Steel's spiritual attributes. They can add an action point to a roll (somewhat equivalent to a dice for those that don't have Unearthed Arcana) when the outcome was related to "their background". (Having a written character background is something I usually require). Yes, that's a vague idea on my part and possibly could lead to game-interrupting discussions.

I think you've got a good idea. I've only played Riddle of Steel once, but the spiritual attributes seemed to be a mechanic that focused players on how their characters were involved in the story.
 

Logos7

Retired User
What do i mean by role play? Essentially any/everything aside from things associated with Larp. Talk/Acting/Judging in accordance with your Skills and Background as defined by the game mechanics and with your history as defined by your play as this character.

I've done the Wandering XP for Good RP, and that works somewhat but the problem is that it can be terribly hard to predict what will get it or how to judge it . Currently have a MV_RolePlayer_ Award at the end that the player's vote on.

as for all you type A, personalities out there, thanks for the LOOK THIS IS THE WAY IT IS, , but i know. Just because its my first post doesn't mean i'm a fresh DM or Players. I Left it vague because i wanted a variety of responces ( and i got a couple of shiny ones in there thanks!)

Also I'm looking for a Mechanic more than a house rule, that rewards acting consistantly with character history. I'm not just looking for a reward but a method of reward if that makes sense?

Logos
 

tete

Punch Drunk Mage
Validated User
Ahhh, you want a mechanic well I would steal the stunts from Exalted.
you get a bonus for describing the action and the bonus is variable.
+1 bonus = doing something the GM thinks is cool
+2 bonus = doing something everyone things is cool
+3 bonus = doing something so awesome you'll be talking about it for months
or something like that... you could of course make the bonus higher and make it for anytime you do something "in character" or however you wish to change it.
 

salamanca

Lost in his own museum
Validated User
If you want to encourage Role Play do NOT let the players simply select a few trait titles and gain a benefit to use at their discretion. all that does is amp up the bonuses for the player without giving the game what you want.

You can let them name some descriptors which you will grant bonus for when appropriate and have them still guessing at your whim. Or you can have a floating bonus for when they are being in character.

But all any of it will do is get you a table full of players paying lip service to their backgrounds when it's convenient.

If you want roleplay, you have to walk the walk and talk the talk. Get extremely into character with the NPCs. refuse to answer if they are not in character, let them use their stats to make the social checks with huge benefits (practically make it an auto success) if they roleplay into it and huge penalties if they just insist on rolling. Add more free bennies if they describe interesting combat attacks and penalize the "I wanna hit it" declarations.

If you create the atmosphere it will get mirrored back after a few sessions.

If you must have a mechanical bennie grant them re-roll tokens for the next failed attempt at anything after they have been roleplaying.

Anything you can put on the table in front of them is a great reward. (make it something they can eat like a gummi bear and you will be amazed at how few of those get turned in)
 

Spinachcat

Registered User
Validated User
The single most effective house rule I had for amplifying role-play in Dungeons and Dragons was to get rid of XP.
Yup, screw XP. We run short campaign arcs and I give out 1 level per session.

2) Sense motive has become an always-on effect that is 10+ranks+modifiers... a sort of social AC, if you will. That and I don't want 20 people screaming SENSE MOTIVE whenever an NPC opens their mouth.
Very nice idea. It would work well for all those passive Spot and Listen checks as well.

I was just wondering if anyone/everyone had some quick and easy fixes for DnD relating to things that encourage/reward Roleplay.
The so-called "Indie Games" do not encourage RP. People who prefer the social conflict aspect of RPGs are drawn to narrativist games where they get to hold the talkie stick for more time than in traditional RPGs.

Non-combat problems that need dialogue to solve is what encourages RP in traditional RPGs. If the heroes are asked to learn the true loyalties of the duke, they will roleplay vs. if they are asked to just slay the evil duke.

What do i mean by role play? Essentially any/everything aside from things associated with Larp. Talk/Acting/Judging in accordance with your Skills and Background as defined by the game mechanics and with your history as defined by your play as this character.
Put them in LARP-like situations. Give them non-mechanical rewards. The king does not give them 3,000 gp or a +1 sword. Instead, he gives them honorary titles or no taxes for 10 years or permission to own land in his kingdom.

Also I'm looking for a Mechanic more than a house rule, that rewards acting consistantly with character history. I'm not just looking for a reward but a method of reward if that makes sense?


I recommend you talk this out with your players. Maybe your players don't want to LARP while sitting. Maybe they consider roleplay the act of rolling dice and killing monsters. Maybe you need a new group who specifically game in order to stage act minus the stage?

If you create the atmosphere it will get mirrored back after a few sessions.
Mostly true. However, the players may have a different definition of roleplaying and character immersion.

Anything you can put on the table in front of them is a great reward. (make it something they can eat like a gummi bear and you will be amazed at how few of those get turned in)
Are you gaming with people or trained seals?
 

simontmn

Registered User
Validated User
The single most effective house rule I had for amplifying role-play in Dungeons and Dragons was to get rid of XP.
I love XP, but I suggest awarding it for the kind of play you want to encourage - if you want dramatic soliloquies, award XP. If you want in-character roleplay, award XP. Award XP for actions in accordance with a PC's goals and character. If you want less monster killing, award less XP for it.
 

Ken Finlayson

Small But Vicious Dog
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Also I'm looking for a Mechanic more than a house rule, that rewards acting consistantly with character history. I'm not just looking for a reward but a method of reward if that makes sense?
This might not be what you want, but here goes:

In The Shadow of Yesterday, an indie RPG (not a d20 System game), characters have something called a Key. To quote the game,
These are goals, emotional ties, or vows a character has. By bringing these into the story, the player gains experience points (XP) he can use to advance the character, increasing pools and abilities, or learning new Secrets and Keys.
(from The Shadow of Yesterday: Main Rulebook.)

Have a look at the Keys listed in the rule book to get an idea of how it works. Using this method, rather than the CR/EL system, should encourage the players to pursue their character's interests, because that's how they will get XP.

I'm sure (somewhere in the depths of Open, probably) someone covered how to adapt this for D&D.
 

Ken Finlayson

Small But Vicious Dog
RPGnet Member
Validated User
Give them non-mechanical rewards. The king does not give them 3,000 gp or a +1 sword. Instead, he gives them honorary titles or no taxes for 10 years or permission to own land in his kingdom.
Of course, if the PCs aren't getting their regular infusion of treasure (through whatever means), their characters will be weaker than expected by the system. This isn't necessarily a problem for Logos7, depending on what the game's about.

Anything you can put on the table in front of them is a great reward. (make it something they can eat like a gummi bear and you will be amazed at how few of those get turned in)
Are you gaming with people or trained seals?
Or maybe they're just playing a real man's game.
 

Mr. Teapot

Registered User
Validated User
When a character is made, and each time they level up, establish a goal for the PC(s). Appropriate, character based things (whatever that means to you/your group). When you achieve that goal, you level up. The GM's job is to try to make each goal require several encounters/sessions of play.


Either do this individually or as a group. Probably the latter, which would make things easier for the GM, but if the GM wants to handle six different plot threads and variable levels across the party, then go individually.


This gives you a simple system that rewards solving problems in alternate ways as much as it does through combat - maybe more, depending on the goal. It also gives a clear channel for communication between GM and player: if you establish "drive out the gangs from the slums" as you goal, the GM knows you want to achieve that goal over the next level, not in the next single session or over the course of the campaign.
 

Logos7

Retired User
Interesting, I'm coming to like the idea of Forward looking Traits rather than Backward Looking Traits ( it's slowly growing on me like mold )

Also is the opininon that indies attract narrativist generally hold in the greater community ( I don't like the GNS distinctions, If things were ment to be that straightforward, Pi would equal 3 )

Also thanks for all the suggestions to basically stop playing DnD when i play dnd ( Stop giving out Xp comments, stay away from combat comments ) but not what i'm looking for. As for the Mechanic is just another spoof to buff character's , It's somethign i already play with (action points) so it's not like it's something they wouldn't be getting anyway. I don't think mechanics are the enemy, I'm just looking for ways to make my DnD game more RP friendky, not a theatre troop without a stage

The Key thing from Shadows of yesterland is interesting, Am now going to troll to see if i can find a 3.5 adapt for it.

Thank you everyone for your time and effort

Logos
 
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