Players and Prototypes

You play D&D with your friends, but do you know who your friends are? Use this checklist to find out.

As a DM, it is your job to defeat the players. However, in order to defeat them, you must know their strengths and weaknesses. use this handy guide to identify the players in your game, and destroy them.

The Smasher

  • Destroys anything you put in front of them, be it a stone statue or a delicate negotiation.
  • Probably is Chaotic Neutral, definitely some kind of fighting class
  • Absolutely no patience for roleplaying, unless they can intimidate and/or gross out the NPCs.
  • Character is indistinguishable from their character from the previous game.

Solution: raise the monster’s levels by two and double their damage. The Smasher usually is not good at optimizing their character’s numbers.

The Talker

  • Turns every encounter into a three-hour negotiation, even when fighting a horde of mindless undead.
  • May or may not be actually any good at convincing people.
  • Can be any class or alignment, but favors spellcasters
  • Definitely has a thirty-page backstory for you to read.

Solution: Use their backstory against them. Have them get swarmed by whatever monster killed their family members and have them dragged, screaming, into the depths of the earth.

The Planner

  • Has an intricate twelve-step scheme for everything.
  • The scheme is extremely stupid, but might still work.
  • Will spend the entire session figuring out how to best bypass a single unlocked door if you allow them.
  • Their character progression is equally planned-out, though not necessarily effective.

Solution: random encounters with homebrew monsters. Let’s see you think your way out of a DC18 Wisdom save, bucko!

The Napper

  • Either literally asleep or figuratively asleep at the wheel for the entire session.
  • Might be looking at phone instead.
  • “Huh? It’s my turn again? Oh… what were we fighting?”
  • Surprisingly involved when making their character but checks out immediately after.

Solution: skip their turn and see if anyone notices. If they do, claim you “forgot” again.

The Artist

  • Carefully draws intricate illustrations of everywhere the party has been and the people they meet.
  • Talented enough to impress the group, not talented enough to make a living at it.
  • “I’m pretty sure you said earlier that the caste had four gates, though…”
  • Doesn’t understand why you’re mad.

Solution: it was an illusion all along, guys. The elves are using illusion magic and that’s why nothing makes sense.

The Beginner

  • Does not remember anything about the rules or their character sheet, no matter how long the game has gone on.
  • Will take upwards of twenty minutes to look up how an attack roll works, and has to check it every time.
  • May or may not possess object permanence.
  • Will try to be one of the other player types, but fail.

Solution: you don’t really have to try very hard with this one, they usually will be defeated just by trying to remember how to deal with a single goblin.

The Killer

  • Wants to be the absolute worst person imaginable in the game.
  • Will not only kill, but also probably torture and rape as well with zero provocation.
  • Clearly has some issues that they are working out, or possibly is just eDgEy aS fUcK.
  • Making the other players uncomfortable is the primary goal.

Solution: have the NPCs kill them for the heinous serial killer shit they do, as would happen in the real world.

The Optimizer

  • Physically incapable of having a suboptimal character build.
  • What asked about their character’s personality, lists the feats they chose.
  • Found a bizarre rules exploit that is 100% legal and will 100% make every encounter boring and trivial.
  • Owns at least one copy of every sourcebook and has them bookmarked for quick reference.

Solution: housrule everything to be different and change what you have houseruled constantly. Alternatively, rocks fall and everybody dies.

The Socializer

  • Wants to talk about how their week went and the latest video game that came out.
  • Will derail the game constantly even once it has started.
  • Somehow never has the time to meet up outside of the game.
  • May be surprisingly competent at the game on the rare occasions they are focused.

Solution: enforce a 100% “everything you say is in character” restriction, on them and everyone.

The Worst Player

  • Calls 45mins after the game should have started to let you know they are “just about to leave.”
  • Doesn’t want to chip in for pizza, but still takes a slice anyways.
  • Constantly unhappy with their character and wants to reroll, but will be unhappy with the new character as well.
  • Openly and honestly suggests plans that are more horrific than anything The Killer comes up with, and doesn’t understand why people object to them.

Solution: there is no escape, someone is always the worst player. If you don’t know who it is in your group, it’s you.

As always, remember you can buy roleplaying supplies at great discounts every day from the Frontline Gaming store, whether you’re looking to pick up a sourcebook for your latest campaign or a set of minis for the next encounter.

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About abusepuppy

AbusePuppy is the one who has been ruining 40K for everyone this whole time. He is also searching for the six-fingered man and is one of the three people who know the secret recipe for coke (not the soda, the illegal drug.)

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