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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default A problem with keeping the group together

    Greetings wise and noble people of GitP!

    I would like your advice on a problem that I have been having as GM for a Pathfinder game. The problem is this: Most of the party is undertaking to create a Guild of adventures. Basically an organisation to make it easier for adventurers to find work, and at the same time gain some protection from the powerful Noble Houses that exist in the Campaign (safety in numbers and all that).

    Now, most of the party rather like this, the idea is that they will set it up, and it will mostly be run by allies of theirs. The party will get some of the profits but otherwise they can keep going with their own thing rather than being tired down in paperwork. However, they also look forward to it being a source of work for them, they'll take the most interesting, the highest paid or the most dangerous work if no one else can handle it. I very much like the idea as GM, it is an interesting thing to do in a campaign where politics is very important, rather than siding with one of the Noble houses, they've decided to create a group that can work with any/all of them.

    So far so good you might think, and well you should. The real heart of the problem is that one player doesn't want to join the Guild, he says that his character is loyal to his Monastic order (Monk) above all other things and doesn't want to have anything else that might test his loyalties.

    In character that's fine, no harm done. The problem is out of character. If the character isn't part of the Guild then he shouldn't be involved with Guild work (which will be taking up most of the time, because most of the players want to). He also shouldn't be staying at the Guild House (where the rest of the party will be staying), he shouldn't have access to the Guild potions and equipment shop etc. Basically what it comes down to is that really, he shouldn't be a member of the party any more.

    This is a problem, the player has shown no desire to create a new character, ever for the next few sessions and thus I've come to an impasse. I can't see any reason for him to continue working with the party, or, if he does, why he should work with them in the immediate future.

    Can you give me any advice as to what I might consider doing? I don't want to force the player to be part of something he doesn't want to, but at the same time I can't see any other way short of telling him to roll up a new character.


    TLDR: One of my players doesn't want to be part of the Guild that will be taking up a heck of a lot of time in the next few sessions. I don't want to force him to be, but at the same time he's side lining himself.
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    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Hmm. For what it's worth, I just don't see any option but to NPC the Monk. So, obviously, I'd suggest talking it out with the player (one-on-one) and explain that there's just no way for the party to be able to include the character very often without Guild membership. Work out what the Monk will be doing, and what kind of replacement he can bring in; maybe figure out a way for the player to still run his old character once in a while.

    If he still refuses, just let him sideline himself for a while, while you wait for inspiration to strike (or for him to capitulate, either way).

    You might, though, be able to get one last united job in with the excuse of "for old time's sake" or whatever, as a transition.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Well, since NPCs will be running the Guild business, I presume two modes of play that could be happening here: politics, where PCs are representatives of the Guild; adventures, where they handle dangerous missions. I also assume that the party established some ties of friendship with the monk during previous part of the campaign.

    The latter is easy, have the other PCs invite their Monk party mate along as a friend and - officially - freelancer (as his monastic order's agenda probably won't clash with whatever they'll be doing).

    The former is harder, but can also be interesting - have the monk show up on the same political events as a representative of his order and get some PvP diplomacy going.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    What would his Monastic order think about him being contracted out for services to the Guild? Instead of taking the same share of the spoils as the other characters, the Guild could pay a stipend directly to the Monastic order for his services. He doesn't get to sleep in the Guild barracks and he is now allowed access to Guild equipment, but in this way he is allowed to participate in Guild work and thus to continue adventuring with the party.

    EDIT: I do feel for you. It seems like this player is being a stubborn pain in the ***, but kicking him out of the group seems harsh.
    Last edited by Frog of War; 2012-09-23 at 06:02 AM.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    So, basically he's a scab - benefiting from guild work and perks without paying his union dues. The guild should probably send some enforcers after him to break his kneecaps unless he either submits or gets out of town.

    That, or one of the other PCs can point out to him that if he's really so concerned that a simple guild membership will test his loyalty to his order he must not be all that loyal to begin with and should find a cause/organization to join that he does believe in.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by Hel65 View Post
    Well, since NPCs will be running the Guild business, I presume two modes of play that could be happening here: politics, where PCs are representatives of the Guild; adventures, where they handle dangerous missions. I also assume that the party established some ties of friendship with the monk during previous part of the campaign.

    The latter is easy, have the other PCs invite their Monk party mate along as a friend and - officially - freelancer (as his monastic order's agenda probably won't clash with whatever they'll be doing).

    The former is harder, but can also be interesting - have the monk show up on the same political events as a representative of his order and get some PvP diplomacy going.
    Basically, this. Guildmembers come 1 hour early and do all their guild based activities. After that the monk comes, and the adventure based activities can commence.


    Quote Originally Posted by _Zoot_ View Post
    I can't see any reason for him to continue working with the party, or, if he does, why he should work with them in the immediate future.
    Aren't the pc's friends? In my games the pc's become at least reliant on each other after days of death, blood and horror. Knowing someone and trusting that person in combat/dangerous situations should be a very good reason to continue adventuring together. If someone had a choice, I think they would prefer the person with which they have survived countless traps, ambushes and battles together over the person they'd just met.
    Last edited by some guy; 2012-09-23 at 06:21 AM.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Thanks for your advice guys! You are quite correct in your assumptions so far and I'm very pleased to see that the ideas that had popped up to me and my friend also seem popular in the wider world.


    Quote Originally Posted by ghost_warlock View Post
    So, basically he's a scab - benefiting from guild work and perks without paying his union dues. The guild should probably send some enforcers after him to break his kneecaps unless he either submits or gets out of town.
    Yeah, basically that's the problem if something doesn't happen then it'll be time for the not-very-nice-men to pay him a visit.

    Quote Originally Posted by some guy View Post
    Basically, this. Guildmembers come 1 hour early and do all their guild based activities. After that the monk comes, and the adventure based activities can commence.

    Aren't the pc's friends? In my games the pc's become at least reliant on each other after days of death, blood and horror. Knowing someone and trusting that person in combat/dangerous situations should be a very good reason to continue adventuring together. If someone had a choice, I think they would prefer the person with which they have survived countless traps, ambushes and battles together over the person they'd just met.
    I'd like to do something like that, but unfortunately due to my work timetable its not possible.

    And normally I'd point to exactly that idea of comradely and let the problem work it's self out. But in this instance the characters don't always see eye to eye. And of late the problem is that he made far to big a deal of how he only have loyalty to his order. Meaning some of the other PCs don't trust him very much.
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    Ettin in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by _Zoot_ View Post
    And normally I'd point to exactly that idea of comradely and let the problem work it's self out. But in this instance the characters don't always see eye to eye. And of late the problem is that he made far to big a deal of how he only have loyalty to his order. Meaning some of the other PCs don't trust him very much.
    So the guild isn't the problem. The monk not fitting in with the group is the problem. The guild is only making you address the problem now.

    Anyway I think the outside contracted solution is misty reasonable. During their adventures the pcs will bribe people for information and hire porters to carry their loot. Maybe they'll pay a guide in unfamiliar territory or even hire mercenaries to fight on their side when the odds are overwhelming. IMO these are just the costs of doing business. I don't see why the mono couldn't be included here.

    To get him hired like this, why not set up guild work in the vicinity of monastery. Ostensibly he's leaving to go back to his order since he can't group with the party anymore. If they need to get to the monastery and he's the only one who knows the way they might as well travel together.

    This is your opportunity to get the pcs to bond. Maybe they have some misadventures that make them realize howuch they depend on each other. Maybe the pcs help root out treachery at the monastery. (Thematically I like the idea of another monk being disloyal to the monastery at this point.) Burning down the monastery would be contrived and unfair to the monk but if you need a last ditch method to get him into the guild, the chief monk could ask him to spy on the guild. (If this isn't the sort of thing these monks would do see my earlier parenthetical about a traitor in the monastery)
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Here's a simple and elegant, if a bit heavy-handed, solution.

    The head of the monastery orders the monk to join the guild so the order can keep an eye on the newly forming power group in the region.

    Politics is one of the most dangerous games in any world, and noone can afford to ignore the formation of a new power-group. The head of the monastery still has to deal with merchants to supply the order, which means dealing with merchant guilds. The merchant guilds have to wheel and deal with the city government. The government has to wheel and deal with the heads of various churches. The churches are responsible for their monasteries and keeping the general populace pacified.

    The monastery's leader can't avoid politics, which means he can't ignore this new power-group.

    Problem solved.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    You could marry the guild to that particular deity and its monastic order as a patron. The god such and such provides a blessing upon this guild, in exchange they have an altar to said god in every branch house, work the god's name and principles into their charter, and pay a tithe based on the guild's profits.

    It would give the fledgling guild some of that faith's credibility so that their organization isn't mistaken for ornery mercenaries or thugs, provide a network of healers and informants who would work on amiable terms with them, and maintain a natural distance from the aristocracy and their games. Having a monk in the organization would cement this relationship.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    It seems to me that to get the player to join the organization the way you want especially with the rules it has will only get the player to actively try to ruin your game rather than ever truly joining that organization.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Forgot to add a caveat to my previous post.

    Don't do this if it will upset the player.

    I made the assumption that the player wouldn't have a problem joining the guild if you could give him an in-character reason that didn't conflict with his vision of his character.

    If he doesn't want to join as a player, then forcing him to would be most definitely not cool.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Maybe have the guild offer to do something in return for the services of the monk? Perhaps his order needs something retrieved, or some problem dealt with. After that the monk can just sort of tag along, and leave at any time if he feels his order needs him.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by _Zoot_ View Post
    Thanks for your advice guys! You are quite correct in your assumptions so far and I'm very pleased to see that the ideas that had popped up to me and my friend also seem popular in the wider world.




    Yeah, basically that's the problem if something doesn't happen then it'll be time for the not-very-nice-men to pay him a visit.



    I'd like to do something like that, but unfortunately due to my work timetable its not possible.

    And normally I'd point to exactly that idea of comradely and let the problem work it's self out. But in this instance the characters don't always see eye to eye. And of late the problem is that he made far to big a deal of how he only have loyalty to his order. Meaning some of the other PCs don't trust him very much.
    Well the way I see it the party is the guilds founders thus the heads of the guild for now, everyone will bow to their whims cause they're funding the place and protecting the lower adventurers from harm, thus the Monk will be an untouchable issue if hes scabbing with the party for now.

    But because the group is passing off the Bureaucratic duties of the guild, someone else will do them and probably not like being second fiddle to a party who's never there, he/she builds up a splinter group and bid for control over the guild thus you can have an adventure down the road with a power struggle between this NPC and the PCs with the Monk being the straw that broke the camel's back.

    Then if they win you might have to revisit this problem but cross your fingers that the monk changes his mind by then

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    I'd say just make all Guild related resources available to non-Guild members at an exorbitant cost. Guild barracks are free to Guild members, 20gp a night to others. Guild equipment is discounted for Guild members, 110% cost for non-Guild members. Etcetera, etcetera.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Thanks for your ideas guys! I like the ways you've suggested to have an in character reason for him to join, at the moment the problem is that the player can't see any way that his character would join, so I'll put some of these ideas forward as see if we can't work something out!
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by The Random NPC View Post
    I'd say just make all Guild related resources available to non-Guild members at an exorbitant cost. Guild barracks are free to Guild members, 20gp a night to others. Guild equipment is discounted for Guild members, 110% cost for non-Guild members. Etcetera, etcetera.
    I was going to suggest this. Non-members can use Guild services (quest-giving), but have to pay more for them, and owe a larger share of profits to the Guild. The practice is essentially a "trial period", where prospective members can decide whether the Guild is right for them before committing. The Monk can keep buying Trial Periods without getting full membership, but the costs will quickly stack up and make membership seem more attractive.

    The Guild should have regulations for working with non-members, like giving them less compensation for completed quests (25% goes to the Guild, instead of the normal 5-10%), and/or not giving them services (things like legal representation, health/resurrection-insurance, spellbook-insurance, free lodging etc).


    Otherwise, the Monk will seriously piss off guild members and possibly shatter the guild, or get the PCs investigated for corruption charges.
    Last edited by Slipperychicken; 2012-09-24 at 11:35 AM.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    He doesn't have to join; he has to be assigned duties that involve the guild.

    Political: The monastic order has concerns about the guild, and sets up political difficulties for them. He has been assigned to set up the difficulties, watch their reactions, and report back to the order.

    Adventures: The monastic order hires the guild for adventures. The monk is there as their representatives.

    In both of these cases, he's working with the guild, but not entirely on the same side, which seems to be the requirement he has set by having his primary loyalty be to the order. On an adventure, for instance, he wants to succeed as much as they do, but he would not support a suggestion that they take more than their share of the loot.

    Ideally, his decision that he isn't as loyal to the guild will provide some difficult (though solvable) role-playing opportunities. Don't try to avoid the effect of that decision - use it.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    I nearly suffered a tpw because they wanted to split the party (and send each half towards 2 different challenging encounters)


    I convinced them not to with this
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    Last edited by Ravenica; 2012-09-26 at 10:31 AM.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    There is a political solution.

    You could have one (or some) of the powerful nobles engage in a bit of union busting. If the monestry has different issues with the same nobles, then they could be forced to ally with the guild for mutual protection.

    Basically its an external threat causing the Monestry and Guild to unite.

    You can achieve the same result with any external threat - Orc invasion, powerful monster, etc.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    I guess I'm confused about a few things:

    - Are ALL adventurers expected to be part of this guild?

    - Does everyone who wants to hand out a quest/plot hook have to go through the adventurers guild?

    - Are ALL monks basically not allowed to be part of this guild due to the monastic loyalties things? Meaning, no monks at all could ever be part of the adventurers guild?

    - What about other PC classes that have strong ties to some sort of organizations? Paladins, clerics, druids...etc, wouldn't they have the same basic concerns?

    - Why does the player feel he can only be loyal to one thing at a time? I mean, just thinking of my personal life, I'm loyal to my family, job, church and friends.

    - The player was fine finding a job that paid money from some shady looking guy in the run down tavern, but isn't fine being part of an organization that'll find him a job in a somewhat respectable way?

    - The player was fine joining this group of rag-tag wanna be sword swingers and spell chuckers (his party), trust them with his life, travel into dungeons and fight dragons, share in the treasures they found...., basicaly be loyal to them, but is concerned about an adventurer's guild causing him to not be loyal to his monastic order?

    - Seriously, why did he leave the convent, because there has to be hundreds of temptations every day that might cause him to lose his loyalty to his monastic order?

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    The monk's order calls a meeting with him. In it they ask about his affiliation with the other PCs and this new guild that has recently been created. They ask because it appears there is a prophesy set down by a monk long long ago in ancient scrolls that make reference, somehow, to the guild (play off the name or symbolism of the guild or something to ensure that the reference sounds vague but, surprisingly, pretty specific to the guild once you see the connection). The guild will be unwittingly involved in something which will set larger, sinister events in motion of some sort. Whatever thing you have up and coming for an adventure, if it fits, or, if you need something to fit here, have it make reference to an enemy of the monastic order. Because of this the order asks that the monk "join" the guild and prevent this prophesy from coming about. The monks are still trying to transcribe and properly interpret this ancient writing and it will take time. They will update the monk on new details as they uncover them. This last bit allows you as a DM to slowly advance the plot/make changes and use this as a carrot for the monk player.

    Insert things related to the enemy in upcoming adventures and slowly build this plot to a head. Interweave it with other guild plots. Having the monk and the other guild members differ in opinion on what might need doing while on an adventure can lead to some interesting roleplaying - not all disagreement is bad. Perhaps someone sponsoring an expedition is seeking out relics related to this ancient enemy of the order. Perhaps an important client of some sort is indicated to be a member of this enemy of the order and the PC will have to try and figure out who it is.

    If your group is open to discussing the types of adventures they would like in the future run this idea by them and get a communal buy in. Ask for other individual motivation ideas for other players. Perhaps one player can actually be working for this enemy undercover. Talk to one player outside of the game and arrange this.

    Dangle a reward in front of player motivations to keep them on track, roleplaying-wise. An additional level if they succeed in doing such-and-such, perhaps. Have an artifact hunt quest that comes to the guild. Give each player motivation to want the artifact for themselves - monk order wants it destroyed, secret enemy of monk order PC wants it for his superior, one player was made an offer by a third group who wants it hidden away again somewhere else due to its controversial nature - they fear it getting out into the open, and maybe another PC is offered a powerful and lusted after magic item of some sort if they recover it, etc. While this may put the player's at each other's throats temporarily it will get them all to focus on the quest, encourage roleplaying, etc. Be sure to indicate OOC that this is meant to be fun to see who comes out on top *without* breaking the affiliation with the group. Maybe this needs to be said in-character to some PCs if need be too.

    If all of this fails to work on the player to get him involved in the group experience you have more of a problem of a player being deliberately contrary and not a roleplaying problem. Talk to them in private outside of the game and explain that you are trying to give everyone something to do here and you went out of your way to accomodate their character's motivations but that, having done that, you are done convincing the player to play along. His/her cooperation in making this happen would be appreciated. If not explain he may be sitting out some playing sessions due to lack of anything for his character to do. If they still balk at playing along for the sake of gameplay after this they are being, frankly, a douche.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    He's a member of the party starting the guild so they could just overlook his not being a member, it's their guild after all.
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by Toofey View Post
    He's a member of the party starting the guild so they could just overlook his not being a member, it's their guild after all.
    Maybe the Monk could become an investor in the Guild. If he buys X% of shares, he can use Guild services and facilities as though he were a member.
    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor Tippy View Post
    By level 20 though, you aren't capturing a wizard. A character lives to level 20 by being the most ruthless, lucky, capable, and paranoid bastard around. A wizard is throwing around a 30+ Int score and has, entirely in character, planned contingencies for his contingencies. He may well be running around with flat out total immunity to harm, he does not walk outside without an entire bevy of defensive magics around him and enough magic items to buy himself a nation.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by Toofey View Post
    He's a member of the party starting the guild so they could just overlook his not being a member, it's their guild after all.
    Maybe the Monk could become an investor in the Guild. If he buys X% of shares, he can use Guild services and facilities as though he were a member.
    Quote Originally Posted by Emperor Tippy View Post
    By level 20 though, you aren't capturing a wizard. A character lives to level 20 by being the most ruthless, lucky, capable, and paranoid bastard around. A wizard is throwing around a 30+ Int score and has, entirely in character, planned contingencies for his contingencies. He may well be running around with flat out total immunity to harm, he does not walk outside without an entire bevy of defensive magics around him and enough magic items to buy himself a nation.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by Trog View Post
    Dangle a reward in front of player motivations to keep them on track, roleplaying-wise. An additional level if they succeed in doing such-and-such, perhaps. Have an artifact hunt quest that comes to the guild. Give each player motivation to want the artifact for themselves - monk order wants it destroyed, secret enemy of monk order PC wants it for his superior, one player was made an offer by a third group who wants it hidden away again somewhere else due to its controversial nature - they fear it getting out into the open, and maybe another PC is offered a powerful and lusted after magic item of some sort if they recover it, etc. While this may put the player's at each other's throats temporarily it will get them all to focus on the quest, encourage roleplaying, etc. Be sure to indicate OOC that this is meant to be fun to see who comes out on top *without* breaking the affiliation with the group. Maybe this needs to be said in-character to some PCs if need be too.
    No, do not put the party figuratively at each other's throats. All but one are working harmoniously together. Don't be a jerk to break that up as obviously you are not wanting to do now. If need be meta-game talk with the monk player to let him know you aren't going to punish his character in game for joining the Guild with respect to his monastery. Other people have already given various hooks for the monk to go along, including allowing for the monk not joining the Guild.

    As for the monk player remind him he controls the character, not the reverse. Tell him to just choose differently. Just choose one of the various options. Poof, by fiat, it's done. If he still refuses, he needs to get over himself. Remind him he doesn't have to join the Guild, but he's there to play the game. There's no need to be so self-righteous. Play a new character if he absolutely must, one that wants to be part of the Guild, but it would be a stupid reason to leave the game entirely over.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    To answer some questions:

    Quote Originally Posted by Trebloc View Post
    I guess I'm confused about a few things:
    - Are ALL adventurers expected to be part of this guild?
    - Does everyone who wants to hand out a quest/plot hook have to go through the adventurers guild?
    - Are ALL monks basically not allowed to be part of this guild due to the monastic loyalties things? Meaning, no monks at all could ever be part of the adventurers guild?
    - What about other PC classes that have strong ties to some sort of organizations? Paladins, clerics, druids...etc, wouldn't they have the same basic concerns?
    - Why does the player feel he can only be loyal to one thing at a time? I mean, just thinking of my personal life, I'm loyal to my family, job, church and friends.
    - The player was fine finding a job that paid money from some shady looking guy in the run down tavern, but isn't fine being part of an organization that'll find him a job in a somewhat respectable way?
    - The player was fine joining this group of rag-tag wanna be sword swingers and spell chuckers (his party), trust them with his life, travel into dungeons and fight dragons, share in the treasures they found...., basicaly be loyal to them, but is concerned about an adventurer's guild causing him to not be loyal to his monastic order?
    - Seriously, why did he leave the convent, because there has to be hundreds of temptations every day that might cause him to lose his loyalty to his monastic order?
    - No, it's an optional group, but I feel that many would be tempted towards it, just as a means of taking some of the hassle out of finding work.

    -There are no othes taken to the Guild that I know of, its more like a union sort of set up, you pay your dues and get some befits. Thus as far as I'm concerned any PC class that has ties but has found a way to go adventuring shouldn't see it as a problem.

    -As to the loyalty of the player, that's where I'm having problems. I very much like the way you put it, it doesn't make sense to me, or the rest of the group.

    Quote Originally Posted by navar100 View Post
    As for the monk player remind him he controls the character, not the reverse. Tell him to just choose differently. Just choose one of the various options. Poof, by fiat, it's done. If he still refuses, he needs to get over himself. Remind him he doesn't have to join the Guild, but he's there to play the game. There's no need to be so self-righteous. Play a new character if he absolutely must, one that wants to be part of the Guild, but it would be a stupid reason to leave the game entirely over.
    That's what it's going to come down to I fear. I've lined up some of the other suggestions, but I'm starting to get the feeling that he just doesn't like the idea and is thus making problems. Which is irritating because I was kinda hoping seeing as we are all sort of mature adults (in theory) we might be beyond that.

    Thanks for your thoughts people!
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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by navar100 View Post
    No, do not put the party figuratively at each other's throats. All but one are working harmoniously together. Don't be a jerk to break that up as obviously you are not wanting to do now.
    Enacting multiple player motivations is not being "a jerk." It is a technique to allow characters to have cross purposes and to be able to accomodate those differing motivations as a DM. It is accepting that opinions at the table will differ and adopting a DMing style to help accomodate that inevitability - not fight it.

    The inherent problem here is that the DM cannot wrangle the monk's player to accept the hook the other player's characters have already swallowed. This is not wholly a player problem - it is an in-character answer to the in-game question of "do we join a guild?" that the DM had not planned for - the answer of "no." Or, more specifically "not for that reason."

    No DM likes having to tell the players how to run their characters. Coming up with a quest to bring the player in question to walk down the same path as the others (just for different reasons) and to allow others at the table to be able to get just as rich of a background and motivation as the player in question evens the playing field at the table, DM attention-wise all get to have their own input into the direction of the plot. Now it goes from "follow the yellow brick road with everyone else or else it's a problem" to "together we will all wrestle to steer the plot, oftentimes canceling each other out, to progress, more or less, forward."

    My suggestions were to provide the OP with DMing ideas to develop some sort of forward-moving motivation for the monk and to, maybe, give other players a chance to develop a motivation with their own character's involvement. Talking to the players ahead of time about their character's motivations to spot roadblocks ahead will help prevent this sort of situation from happening down the road by being ready to take an alternate route. It will benefit all DM and players alike.

    I've had many sessions where this technique was used result in "Wow, I didn't expect your character to make that decision but it was interesting to role play it out to a resolution," instead of "Why didn't you stop role playing already and just play along like the rest of us?" The former encourages independent role playing at the table, seeing it as entertainment, and the latter discourages it, seeing it as disruptive.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by Trog View Post
    Enacting multiple player motivations is not being "a jerk." It is a technique to allow characters to have cross purposes and to be able to accomodate those differing motivations as a DM. It is accepting that opinions at the table will differ and adopting a DMing style to help accomodate that inevitability - not fight it.
    A DM purposely putting PCs at odds with each other is being a jerk. Sometimes two PCs on their own will disagree, as in the monk player and everyone else. That's something the players need to work out hopefully without being a jerk about it themselves. When it affects game, again the monk player, the DM steps in. The DM instigating it is a DM vs Player attitude. The DM does enough providing the villains for the PCs to face. He doesn't need to make the PCs each other's foe as well.

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    Default Re: A problem with keeping the group together

    Quote Originally Posted by navar100 View Post
    A DM purposely putting PCs at odds with each other is being a jerk. Sometimes two PCs on their own will disagree, as in the monk player and everyone else. That's something the players need to work out hopefully without being a jerk about it themselves. When it affects game, again the monk player, the DM steps in. The DM instigating it is a DM vs Player attitude. The DM does enough providing the villains for the PCs to face. He doesn't need to make the PCs each other's foe as well.
    You obviously have gotten the wrong idea here.

    This is a communal buy-in, as I've stated a couple of times now. You talk with the group and see if the are open to this sort of thing and you get their input on how to implement an ongoing rivalry for the sake of roleplaying. At the very least you need to talk to the players to get a sense of how they are going to role play their character's beliefs and attitudes so that any negative absolutes (hypothetical quote: "my monk character will never join another organization or put them above his order") that you may have to deal with as a DM. So, as I've already said, you've obviously have gotten the wrong idea here.

    Or...

    You already knew that I had made this point of talking with the players, and you have just flamed me and called both my current DM and also myself, as a fellow DM for my group, jerks for having agreeably done precisely this.

    Which is it?

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