The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #31
    Ogre in the Playground

    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Chesterfield, MO, USA

    Default Re: Why would characters adventure together?

    Then there is AL. I can count on the fingers if one hand the players/characters who should be glad PvP is forbidden. Looking at you Lizardman who resisted the authorities in Waterdeep until he was unconscious. Had us all thinking TPK... And his signature line as, “But that is what my character would do...”. The AL organizer had “the talk” and he pouted then eventually started his own home brew game somewhere other than that shop.

    Had that happened in our 0D&D/AD&D days any of us grognard DMs would have stopped, looked at the repeatedly warned offender and said, “You are dead. The authorities destroy your body so you cannot be resurrected. Roll up another PC...”. That happened once with a flagrant cheater/ex post facto retconner. His own character’s eventual unintentional death sentence involved formaldehyde. He had been such a problem that the junior high kids in our war game club pooled their money and bought an appropriate themed sheet cake the next Friday night. He did eventually learn but boy howdy what a ride!

    Short version, the problem is not the character.
    Last edited by ZorroGames; 2019-09-20 at 08:20 PM.
    I play AL games only nowdays.

    Preferences: Role play over optimization; Dwarf over Gnome over Variant Human; War games over FRPG; Zorro over Batman over everyone else.

    The nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and fighting by fools.

    Charles George Gordon

  2. - Top - End - #32
    Halfling in the Playground
    RifleAvenger's Avatar

    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Why would characters adventure together?

    Quote Originally Posted by Shabbazar View Post
    Also, IMO, it's worth considering the well publicized resistance by many (most?) police, military and fire units to the introduction of women and minorities. And those unwanted out-groups were at least all human and from the same society! The question could as easily be "why does the male human barbarian adventure with the female-human-different-ethnicity-barbarian"? That is debatable and requires explanation. The more exotic stuff? I consider it unresolvable in any logical way. It just has to be hand-waved.

    To be clear, I'm not trying to justify modern discrimination. I'm just saying that its existence in the presence of all our human commonalities makes me skeptical of how you could make a logical argument that an elf and a half-orc would carry on merrily together.
    In a world where a large number of other sapient species exist, I would think that the perspective would shift. Furthermore, depending on setting, social values, racism, and xenophobia will also differ greatly. Tolerance and diversity, and their counterpoints hate and bias, are, in many cases, a product of framing "us" and "them." There's no hard reason that the Other has to be based on species, though it's a likely place for it form, and thus it's entirely logical to create a setting that tolerates diverse species (perhaps appreciating some, but shunning others).

    Pretty much all fantasy races are humans in literary costume deep down anyways, given the difficulty of writing the truly alien. Developing a reason the party would work together, on whatever levels, is better than handwaves in my opinion.


    Anyways, to the question at hand most people have already given the solutions. Have a session 0. Either assign the writing prompt for characterization or let the players come to a consensus. If it's too late and the players refuse to retcon anything? Let the dice fall where they will, and if the party tears itself apart, "GAME OVER," and start over with one of the Session 0 options.
    Last edited by RifleAvenger; 2019-09-20 at 10:13 PM.

  3. - Top - End - #33
    Bugbear in the Playground

    Join Date
    May 2017

    Default Re: Why would characters adventure together?

    When I first started learning DND (3.5e rules for a very short time) I chose Paladin as my starting class. I was more or less directed in what kind of party I was allowed to play with and the party my friends were building wouldn't have worked. At the start I was a bit of a stickler about it but I pretty quickly noticed that it wasn't helping anyone have a good time with my insistence that my character wouldn't cooperate with theirs.

    So when we started SKT as my first long form campaign, one of the other players wanted to play a good aligned Yuan-Ti (DM allowed this) in a game where I was playing a Blood Hunter. This would be a pretty hard mismatch but I found a way to turn my obstinate,crass near unfeeling character into team player because I didn't want to jeopardize the group dynamic. The characters backstory involved his order being eradicated with him barely escaping into the wilderness with his life. He was nursed back to health by this Yuan-Ti, and being in such a pitiful state when he was found by her meant that he was forced to actually learn that she wasn't like the majority of her kind.

    Attempting to kill her in that state would have been a pathetic and idiotic death. He was no idiot and he wasn't so set in his ways that he'd rather die than accept willing aid. So in the months of slow recovery they grew to be close friends, his point of view on monsters was still pretty strict but ever so slowly changing, starting with her. Now on more than one occasion he's thrown himself into danger in defense of this woman who only half a year ago he would likely have killed if a contract had ever shown up for it.

    My point is, you can always make it work for characters to travel together especially in this edition where there aren't any actual mechanical restrictions for who you can ally yourself with. It's on the players to make it work and I would always recommend being flexible with your characters willingness to go with other PC's rather than rigid. You'll have more fun actually playing the character than holding them until the ideal party shows up, which may never happen.

    If you truly cannot reason why a character would go along with the group dynamic that is forming at that group, make a character who will or find a group that better suits your taste but always try to make it work first.

  4. - Top - End - #34
    Dwarf in the Playground
    NovenFromTheSun's Avatar

    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Lakewood, Colorado

    Default Re: Why would characters adventure together?

    You could always give your players a script .

    If I were ever to GM, i’d probably go with something like “this is the Big Bad, why does the Big Bad hate you?”
    I imagine Elminster's standard day begins like "Wake up, exit my completely impenetrable, spell-proofed bedroom to go to the bathroom, kill the inevitable 3 balors waiting there, brush my teeth, have a wizard fight with the archlich hiding in the shower, use the toilet..."
    -Waterdeep Merch.

    Laphicet avatar by linklele.

  5. - Top - End - #35
    Ettin in the Playground

    Join Date
    Jun 2015

    Default Re: Why would characters adventure together?

    The cheapest and easiest method if you really want a reason would be they have some kind of history together and already know/like/trust each other.

    The overall easiest would be what I saw in a video where the guy was talking about his first AL session. When he asked why he was with the group the DM basically said "Nobody cares, you just are. Lets get on with the adventure."
    I am the flush of excitement. The blush on the cheek. I am the Rouge!

  6. - Top - End - #36
    Dwarf in the Playground

    Join Date
    Mar 2014

    Default Re: Why would characters adventure together?

    This has been a great discussion. I played the first session of a new campaign (all level 1 characters) a few nights ago. A player decided his character was going to be a lizardfolk rogue. Other players brought a half-orc barbarian, water genasi tempest cleric, and a high elf wizard (me). The wizard and cleric managed to party up just fine. The barbarian was working on getting together. Then there's the rogue. He didn't want to party up, ignored conversation starters from the cleric, and hurled insults directed at the wizard and cleric for no reason. Yet the rogue was cordial to every NPC and the barbarian. Finally, after an hour of sitting there not playing because the rogue and barbarian decided they didn't need the casters and went off to do there own thing, I turned to the player with the rogue and said:
    "What's the main reason we're all here tonight? I'm asking you as the player. (No response) It's to gather a bunch of friends and have a good time. Right now, the wizard and cleric players are not having a good time because you don't want to party up with them. The DM is not having a good time because you split the party and he's now having to run 2 different adventures. Not only that, your constant insults are not only uncalled for, they are creating a hostile atmosphere. If you don't want to party together then reroll a ****ing character that does. If you continue to play the character this way, then I will not be playing in this campaign."

    The player apologized, we moved on, partied up and continued the adventure. In the final battle of the night, the lizardfolk rogue dropped, failed his death saves and died. Kind of ironic.
    Last edited by KnotaGuru; 2019-09-23 at 07:47 AM.

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