in the Shadow of Greatness


March 30, 2005

Lunchtime Poll 20 :: Bait and Switch

Lunchtime Poll #20: Bait & Switch

You've got your character rolled up, a backstory with lots of plot hooks created, and you are perfectly equipped to survive in your environment. aren't in your environment. Your GM has dropped you through a wormhole/dimension door/time warp/Stargate, and you are completely unprepared for so much as asking directions to the nearest bathroom-equivalent. From either a player or a GM perspective, discuss the pros and cons of a surprise setting switch.

Bad GM. No cookie!

Ginger and Jvstin both touch points I would raise... so go read that stuff.

As a player, I'd rather work with the GM on something like this than be caught investing in the wrong direction. I'd also like the GM to understand and share what mechanism will be used to translate the PC creation effort into the new genre.

For instance, I've been guilty (in a small way) of bait and switch gaming. Any time you start folks without sharing the rules or genre or possible story, you are switching on them at some point. They do know that it's coming however.

And in my case, I allowed 'powers' to be defined by the PC showing interest in things in play. That system certainly has its drawbacks too.

What if the PC seems interested in something at start, that the Player actually considers minor, or even annoying? As GM you give them power based on those minor actions and create friction between PC and Player.

"Wait, I was just trying to figure out how the woman died! Now I have the power of necromancy? Yuck! This really sucks."

Filed under : Meme at 30.03.2005