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GoblinGilmartin
2011-07-02, 06:21 PM
how do i get my players to work together? In my last game, a warrior wanted to use open lock or disable device or something like that, when he had, like, one rank in it, when there was a rogue in the party who could have accomplished the task in 2 seconds. They have problems thinking of themselves as a team. How do i fix that?

TheAbstruseOne
2011-07-03, 02:08 AM
You really can't, at least not directly. Frankly, I'd be happy if my Fighter tried something like that because when it comes to traps and locks, every group I've had always says "Oh, that's the thief/rogue's job" and ignores it. I say let them do whatever lets them have fun at the table, even if it's the Fighter picking locks or the Wizard going toe-to-toe with the big nasty or the Barbarian doing all the puzzle-solving. As long as everyone's having fun, why not?

If it's becoming a serious problem to the detriment of the game, though, you may need to get the message across to them. I've always found the best way to do that is to show rather than tell. I had a Shadowrun game where the players would stand in the middle of the room firing off their guns randomly at targets rather than using anything remotely involving tactics. So I put them up against a group they outnumbered and outpowered...then mopped the floor with them by having the enemies use cover and movement effectively, making tactical target choices, concentrating fire, using suppressing fire, etc. They picked up the tricks REAL fast, let me tell you.

If they're not using each others abilities effectively and not working together well, you might try putting them in a situation (like a trap room) where they have to work together. The Wizard has to dispel magic or use the Arcana skill while the Fighter muscles something around and the Rogue has to fiddle with the trap or lock. Or you can put them in a race against another adventuring team for the session's MacGuffin where they have a level or two and an extra member vs. the other team, but are running neck and neck for the thing because they're trusting their teammates and relying on their abilities.

Or you could just go with it and try to get them roleplaying. Have them make random Perception checks to notice what each other's doing and pass them notes to increase tension (the rogue sees the fighter picking the lock on the chest and thinks he might have seen the fighter pocket some of the treasure, but he's not sure).

katana2665
2011-07-03, 09:11 AM
Let them have fun. Let the players do what they do, even if it means taking on a task with weakness.

So if the fighter wants to pick locks, eventually he will get one open.

Although, after a hundred tries you may add " it probably would have been easier to just smash the thing with the pommel of your sword", and then give him 1 point in lock picking.

In World of Warcraft (online) my favorite and most fun character to play is a female gnome mage with a sword. The bigger the sword, the better. and with a rabbit trailing behind, it's incredibly amusing. More like what you would expect to see in Munchkin or something.

I started rpg's in 1978, the best ones are those where we had fun with the unexpected, and roleplayed it out.

So while that fighter is intently trying to pick a lock, who is guarding the front? How much damage would be done when a group of nasties came along and he had to fumble to get his sword out?

Let them have fun. It's not so much about the end prize, but more about the journey getting there.

Yora
2011-07-03, 09:24 AM
When there was a rogue in the party, why didn't the player say "Excuse me. May I?"

After a few sessions like that, they'll start to learn of each others strength and weaknesses and know when someone else can handle a situation better.

Kyberwulf
2011-07-03, 11:27 AM
Yora, I wish your Sig was true,......in my experince.. In the land of n00bs the man with half a clue is Mocked relentlessly for being a n00b.

On the Topic, I assume, that being a new DM, also means having new players? If that is the case, just give it time and offer suggestions. Like if you want to pick locks, try multiclassing.

GoblinGilmartin
2011-07-03, 11:41 AM
they were new players, so that makes sense, do you think that they should read each others character sheets before the game? (Not every time, just once so that they could get the gist of the abilities of the others)would that help a little?

Mastikator
2011-07-03, 11:47 AM
You could've asked the rogue why he isn't trying. It's what I would've done. Do it sparingly though, they need to make mistakes like this if they're newbies.

Frozen_Feet
2011-07-03, 12:01 PM
how do i get my players to work together? In my last game, a warrior wanted to use open lock or disable device or something like that, when he had, like, one rank in it, when there was a rogue in the party who could have accomplished the task in 2 seconds. They have problems thinking of themselves as a team. How do i fix that?

Let them fail. Then point out how they could've averted failure. Give them hints of what they could do in any given situation. Whether you do this in the game our out-of-game is largely a matter of preference, though since you are a new GM, it might be easier to tip the players with blatant metagame information - that is, tell how the mechanics work and how they relate to the players as they advance, akin to a videogame tutorial.


they were new players, so that makes sense, do you think that they should read each others character sheets before the game? (Not every time, just once so that they could get the gist of the abilities of the others)would that help a little?
Having them learn each other's abilities is a good tactic, yes. Letting them read each other's sheets is one way to do it - if they're really clueless of the mechanics, you can instead read their sheets to them and also interprete the meaning. Ie., not only will you tell how many ranks does the Rogue have in a skill, you tell how much better in lockpicking he is in comparison to the fighter.

Yora
2011-07-03, 12:03 PM
It's not just the ranks. Then you get Ability-modifiers, bonuses from feats, special tools, and so on. Modifiers of +10 at first level are not that hard, while the fighter would probably have a tiny +1 or so.

TheAbstruseOne
2011-07-03, 12:24 PM
It's not just the ranks. Then you get Ability-modifiers, bonuses from feats, special tools, and so on. Modifiers of +10 at first level are not that hard, while the fighter would probably have a tiny +1 or so.

I doubt it for a Fighter. It's Dex modifier minus armor check penalty, so it's doubtful there'd be a positive unless it's a Str/Dex build. Even still, he's got at least a 1 in 20 chance of getting it open. And if he was having fun, screw it.

GoblinGilmartin
2011-07-03, 02:47 PM
So i'm getting:
A. let them fail, then explain
B. Urge the better suited player to step in
C. overpower them into learning the basics
D. Make them aware of the strengths of the others
E. Do nothing

anything else?

LansXero
2011-07-03, 07:07 PM
So i'm getting:
A. let them fail, then explain
B. Urge the better suited player to step in
C. overpower them into learning the basics
D. Make them aware of the strengths of the others
E. Do nothing

anything else?

All of the above used based on what you know of them, I guess? In that specific situation its not so much the check itself, but as you pointed out the interactions between their characters. Dont force the "better suited" player to step up, rather ask him why his character would act the way he is. Maybe heŽll think it over and act up, or he will have a reason for not doing so. Either way, its still his character and still his choice. Let them, make reasonable consequences (not the YOU DIDNT DO AS YOU SHOULD NOW YOU DIE kind though) and try to weave the team dynamics into your story; get input from your players for that. :D

GoblinGilmartin
2011-07-03, 07:54 PM
All of the above used based on what you know of them, I guess? In that specific situation its not so much the check itself, but as you pointed out the interactions between their characters. Dont force the "better suited" player to step up, rather ask him why his character would act the way he is. Maybe heŽll think it over and act up, or he will have a reason for not doing so. Either way, its still his character and still his choice. Let them, make reasonable consequences (not the YOU DIDNT DO AS YOU SHOULD NOW YOU DIE kind though) and try to weave the team dynamics into your story; get input from your players for that. :D

reasonable is the point i'm trying to acheive. how would the story work into the dynamics, specifically?

LansXero
2011-07-03, 11:55 PM
reasonable is the point i'm trying to acheive. how would the story work into the dynamics, specifically?

Give them reasons for sticking together, to act as a team. Perhaps give them encounters or situations where their strengths / backgrounds / motivations get the spotlight and get noticed by the rest of the group, or their weaknesses get shored up by others in the group.

Mastikator
2011-07-04, 08:23 AM
A common enemy might also work, someone who specifically targets them for something they have in common.

GoblinGilmartin
2011-07-04, 11:48 AM
well, they physically stay together, and they fight together, they just didnt seem to play to their strengths

Yora
2011-07-04, 12:11 PM
It's always more satisfying when players discover new ways to use their characters abilities than telling them how things work better.
I'd suggest creating situations which just call for some of their abilities to be used and then they can find out by themselves how well it works. Or alternatively, have their enemies use exactly those abilities against them, to show how useful and strong they can be.

It depends a lot on what types of characters they are playing and what the adventure is about.

KillianHawkeye
2011-07-04, 01:36 PM
Even still, he's got at least a 1 in 20 chance of getting it open. And if he was having fun, screw it.

Correction: Skill checks don't auto-succeed on a natural 20 in any edition of D&D that I remember playing. They definitely don't in 3.X, which from the talk of skill ranks is the version being played. So if the Fighter has a +1 and the DC is 25, he can never get it open no matter how many times he tries.

GoblinGilmartin
2011-07-04, 08:39 PM
...Or alternatively, have their enemies use exactly those abilities against them, to show how useful and strong they can be.

It depends a lot on what types of characters they are playing and what the adventure is about.

i love this idea. i may has to steal it.

and, while i'm asking for help, i have a story point i want to work into a game. Power rangers time force style, a scientist/alchemist/wizard is betrayed and nearly destroyed, but in his death throes, he puts his self/spirit into a construct/warforged/other atomaton body and seeks revenge.

what would be the best way to incorporate this?

Nyarai
2011-07-05, 01:26 AM
i have a story point i want to work into a game. Power rangers time force style, a scientist/alchemist/wizard is betrayed and nearly destroyed, but in his death throes, he puts his self/spirit into a construct/warforged/other atomaton body and seeks revenge.

what would be the best way to incorporate this?

You could have the scientist dude hire the PCs to do/gather/kill some stuff for him in preparation for finishing his big awesome project. Then, when they return to collect payment, they find his dead meatbody. Then just as the PCs are about to leave (since there's nothing they can do), the construct comes to life and says something dramatic like, "I have another job for you..."

Just the idea I had. :smallredface: