DM of the Rings Remaster LX: The Madness of King Whatsizname

By Peter T Parker Posted Sunday Feb 25, 2024

Filed under: DM of the Rings Remaster 5 comments

On one hand, taking away their weapons is a dead giveaway that they will need them. On the other hand, by the time conflict starts the players will already have opened the rulebooks and found the parts that deal with bare-handed combat, performing disarm moves, and using improvised weapons.

Players may blunder through dialog with shocking ineptitude, forget the name of the country they are in, or get confused about which side they are on, but once it comes time to roll for initiative they all turn into Sun Tzu.

-Shamus Monday Feb 5, 2007

In their defence, tactical turn based combat is a lot easier than improv. One of my first sessions my players managed to flatten my boss monster in one round with no damage taken, and then they spent over an hour trying to negotiate a ride back into the city to get paid.


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5 thoughts on “DM of the Rings Remaster LX: The Madness of King Whatsizname

  1. Earnest Victory says:

    This is why every party needs a monk, who gets to look on smugly as everyone else disarms.

  2. Gargamel Le Noir says:

    That’s exactly why super uber GMPC are terrible. Not just because of the resentment from the PC getting the spotlight stolen away from them but from the fact that they eventually resign themselves to it and just assume that the GMPC will solve everything and that they don’t really need to get invested.
    Remember kids, the best GMPCs *support* the players.

    1. MrGuy says:

      The counter to this is that if you have a GMPC in this situation, overpowered or not, what’s really happening is the players are walking into a cutscene and they know it.

      It doesn’t matter how theoretically capable the GMPC might be. If the GM is in control, the players aren’t.

  3. Tom B says:

    Had a friend who was an honest to god sailor – everything from keel boats to yachts to a 125 ton tall ship or 500 tons of commercial shipping… and he developed a lot of the current Canadian hover craft and wing-in-ground rules. He was talking to another round-the-world sailor and they talked about guns on the boat. One said “Well, there are places you’d like to have them given the amount of theft and murder even in some ports…” and the other one said “The places you’d want to have guns would be the places they force you to turn them over upon arrival…”. So yeah, that happens even in the real world.

    The round-the-world lad had met some folks going round-the-world in the opposite direction. The danger and firearms issue came up again. The scenario the new friends put forward was: Light is fading, a diesel vessel is coming alongside your keelboat. You are armed but not visibly. In the waters in question, it isn’t unusual for small sailboats to be hijacked and more often lately they get executed. You see the ship overhauling yours and the crew is all wearing masks. There are a bunch of them. What do you do? Do you start blasting when they come alongside?

    The keelboat skipper didn’t open up (but he were very edgy….) and it turned out that it was a local fishing boat. They were coming back from fishing with a load and wanted to make some money offering the foreigners some fresh seafood for some currency. The masks were there to cover their faces from the bright sun and the +45% more reflected UV from being on the water.

    But it could have been pirates in that area, so it was a brown pants decision time.

  4. Sleeping Dragon says:

    One thing that I like about cRPGs compared to tabletop is that they do all the mechanical stuff on the fly. Oh, you’re not using your weapon? Means you don’t get your enhancment bonus to attack, are you proficient with that thing you’re wielding? Do you still get your dual wielding bonus if you’re using an improvised weapons? Oh, that was part of that set from the expansion? Well I think that gives you a CON bonus so this means your maximum HP went down when you removed it… does that round up or down? Do you autoheal it when you get the weapon back?

    This obviously depends heavily on the kind of system you’re playing and I also know that there are people who thrive on this kind of numbercrunchy gameplay but I personally am very glad that when I was playing Owlcat’s Pathfinder games they did this stuff for me and most GMs I play with tend towards less “a thousand and one modifiers” systems.

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