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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    RedKnightGirl

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    Default Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    So, the party bard has +15 to bluff... at lv. 2. =0

    How do you handle the game when one player can just convince all the monsters that your friendly and that they're allowed to take all their treasure?

    What I've been doing is that they take -10 if the bluff is something that no one could possibly believe. Anything else? What if they keep doing things that are reasonable but break the game?
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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    NecroRebel's Avatar

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    You don't inflict huge penalties on the bluff check for attempting to speak stupidly incredible lies, you just set the difficulty DC for the skill check to be appropriately high. Like, convincing someone that they can't see or hear the speaker would be a hard level 50 or so challenge, or DC47; they cannot succeed. Alternatively, rule that bluff doesn't allow for completely incredible statements to be taken as fact; if it can be immediately disproven, nobody is going to believe it.

    Anyway, you should simply set extremely high DCs for things that are extremely hard, with maybe a -2 penalty on top of it. You want to allow the character to take advantage of the resources they've spent maximizing their bluff check without making it overpowered. You also don't want to make it be a one-trick win in any case; it might earn the character, or even the whole party, combat advantage for the first round of a battle, but it won't let them skip the battle entirely on its own. Finally, remember that not everyone will actually allow the liar to speak; if they're in a restricted area and not in disguise or anything like that, guards will simply attack and ask questions later, and unintelligent monsters will simply attack no matter what.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    tyckspoon's Avatar

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    The simplest approach is a fairly basic change in what Bluff actually does, IMO: It doesn't convince the Bluff-ee that what you say is true. It convinces them that you sincerely believe that what you say is true. So if you go up to the Orc in the 10-foot room and go "Hey, I'm a Dungeon Inspector, and I need to take the contents of your poorly-locked chest for quality control tests..." he'll think you're delusional, or have been put up to a joke by some of his buddies, or something. But he won't suddenly believe that Dungeon Inspectors actually exist and that you really do have the right to just take the stuff from the chest just because you rolled a Bluff check at him.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    The games I run and play in all use some version of the rule tyckspoon suggests.

    Bluff is used to try and prevent an opponent from telling you are lying. If your Bluff succeeds, they feel that you are not being dishonest... however as the absurdity of what you claimed grows, so does the chance that they may suspect your are delusional, mad, or misinformed, even if they are convinced of your sincerity. If you allow Bluff to make people think anything is true, as opposed to your honest opinion, why not simply claim the target is already dead and should stop pretending to be alive, a DM has to be the force of sanity.

    In the cases of bold claims, having collaborators (Three Men Make a Tiger), being able to present yourself as sane and aware of (possibly secret) facts (Diplomacy) or a clever appeal to authority (like Arcana if claiming a magic doom will befall any guard who does not look away) may be used after a successful Bluff to try and up the chances of the subject accepting outrageous claims as not only not a lie, but likely to be accurate.
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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Kurald Galain's Avatar

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    Quote Originally Posted by never_shades View Post
    How do you handle the game when one player can just convince all the monsters that your friendly and that they're allowed to take all their treasure?
    Actually this is an interesting point. Convincing guards or goblins that you are friendly is nowhere near as outrageous as convincing someone that they didn't see you.

    By the rules, a character with a good bluff or diplomacy skill should be able to bypass numerous combat encounters, or at least get a surprise round in them (although you should probably veto that if people overuse it).
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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    It's a flaw with the DC mechanics. They focus on too much on DCs based on character level, as opposed to asking what level character should be able to pull off such a trick. A suitably epic trickster should be able to pull off something like this on common folk, although by that point, there's no benefit to doing so. Much like suitably epic characters should have no problem emptying a kingdom's treasury, except by that point it's chump change.

    3.5 did have one tangent to the Bluff rules that might be worth keeping in mind in cases like this. They only act as you want for a round or so. Fast talking can get people to go along with you for a bit, only to come to their senses a few seconds later. If you're good enough and ballsy enough, you can get people to consider all sorts of crazy things. Getting them to stick with the idea is a whole other matter entirely.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    Don't forget that a successful lie requires your "opponent" to understand you; you're going to have a hard time convincing the goblin guards that you have been asked by their leader to check on the captive prince if they don't speak common.

    Also , a good rule of thumb is asking the player how they are using a skill. If your player is going to try and bluff his way out of a situation, get him to describe what exactly he's doing to convince/distract/etc. his opponents. In turn, this will help you set an appropriate DC or bonus to an opposed Insight check. If you're still worried, crib from 3.5's diplomacy skill: a proper diplomacy check takes a minute. Fine in a social situation, not so useful against a hostile opponent. You could easily adapt something similar to a bluff role (note that feinting or creating diversions would be standard actions as normal).

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Kurald Galain's Avatar

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    Quote Originally Posted by Ashdate View Post
    Don't forget that a successful lie requires your "opponent" to understand you; you're going to have a hard time convincing the goblin guards that you have been asked by their leader to check on the captive prince if they don't speak common.
    Yes, but the vast majority of monsters printed do in fact speak common. It's part of 4E's philosophy that being unable to understand one another is Not Fun.
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  9. - Top - End - #9
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    Quote Originally Posted by Kurald Galain View Post
    Yes, but the vast majority of monsters printed do in fact speak common. It's part of 4E's philosophy that being unable to understand one another is Not Fun.
    Absolutely true that most printed monsters speak common, but modifying that bit out of a monsters' stat block is the easiest thing in the world.

    Not to say that every goblin a PC encounters should be unable to speak common of course, but certainly it's believable that some may not.

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    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    The approach I tend to take is that Bluff convinces someone that you're telling the truth, but the more evidence there is to the contrary, the quicker they will realise that you're lying, and the more likely they are to go from convinced to hostile.

    So: "Bluff: No, the ring's totally made out of gold. It's just a bit tarnished, it's well worth five hundred gold" will work until your mark gets it home to buff it up.
    "Bluff: I've been locked in this cell by accident, Officer! I'm actually an innocent man!" works until the guard checks the list of prisoners as he's escorting you out of the cell -- at which point, roll initiative.
    "Bluff: You died five minutes ago, you should stop breathing and things" gives someone, at most, a few heartbeats of terrifying existential terror (because let's face it, if someone walked up to me in the street and told me with absolute conviction that I was dead, I'd be freaked out for a few moments too.)

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    BardGuy

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    Default Re: Bluff check: You don't hear or see me

    Bit of an aged thread but with 4e I've taken on the policy of Charisma as a primary stat, so this is a very relevant thread to my play.

    You know that comical moment after being convinced of 'He went thataway!' where the subject stops and say 'Heeeey... Wait a minute!'

    That's how you stop such bluff checks.

    You can have the target come to their senses a round later, or upon some evidence to the contrary.

    You can treat it as a save-ends for fantastical things and/if you have magical backing for the check ("You're actually a yellow-footed rock wallaby" comes to mind, the guards could have bad will saves)

    Or my personal favorite: Have the subject ask a question relating to the bluff. If the bluff is that the target is actually a fish and should go jump in the lake, he might ask "Wait! How am I breathing on land!?" In this way you can force a second bluff check for something even crazier, or prompt finding some other solution to the problem.

    Such a fantastical bluff as the topic title remains viable with these methods, as it breaks with immediate evidence (how would they be informed that they can't hear or see something by said thing?) but can lead to a double-or-nothing on a second and equal or harder bluff check such as "There must be a gas leak, you're hallucinating this." This is exactly what happens in panel 5, where the guard has immediate evidence to the contrary and requires a second bluff.

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