Thursday, 5 December 2013

Meta Gaming Matters

Hello again peeps.

As mooted it was the penultimate session of Dark Heresy last which in honesty has probably come around at the right time for all involved. I've waxed lyrical about our group "dynamics" on a number of occasions which at no point were intended as digs and that's the case again now :)

It's a matter of fact that Mr C, our GM, can be something of a meta-gamer. This is not a bad thing and is distinctly different to power gaming.

He is well known within our gaming group for constructing efficient, focused lists, armies, characters etc. Fluff and back-story are also present, with plenty of effort put in, but tends to follow on. Mr C has definite plans and strategies to his gaming and forces, tending to hold fast to them during the heat of battle.

No problem, that's his hobby, his enjoyment and he's entitled to that.

He's a good guy who'll give you a competitive game without spoiling yours. He has a decent win percentage without getting hung up about it. All good :)

So naturally as a GM he's also going to exhibit those traits. Fair enough.

As a gaming group the majority of us come from the other direction. We're looking for a bit of free choice with real consequence.

These two approaches tends to bring the group and GM into conflict producing Orange Blamangce moments :/
Last night we continued our stake-out of THE PLACE OF EVIL. A further side-plot was offered and refused, dispatching NPCs to do the job. We just wanted to get to the "inevitable" final showdown with the minimum of fuss.

The side-plot produced a couple of muties who recognised Baron No-Ore and proceeded to cough info. I insisted on corroboration by Mind Scan which Mr C made plain was unnecessary. I continued to insist. As such we go through an exercise of dice checks until I pass with questions and answers through gritted teeth :/

Eventually the bad lads turn up en-masse with three of them carrying a metal orb the size of a man.
Ryan starts blasting chunks from it whilst I go for a big Fearful Aura which sees half of the bad lads turn tail. Following further applied firepower I'm interested in a Spasm for the orb carriers. This sparks a "debate" about line of sight and pre-declaration of actions :/

Following a successful Awareness test a big Spasm drops two of three orb boys, which would seem to not be in the pre-write, and sparks another "debate" about whether the third orb lad would feel the effect. Orange Blamance all over the place!!

 Once dessert is cleared up a successful Strength check keeps him on his feet. At this point the bad lads arm the Psychic Bomb by palm-print and retreat. Asked for actions Ryan somehow works out that the bomb is glowing at "33% of what you would expect it to". Everyone takes the leaden HINT while I decide to go for the disarm, it's what I believe I'd do. 

Arriving at the bomb on 99% luminosity I'm asked for its password. Unfortunately Ryan took the head off the chap who armed it 15 seconds previously so a Mind Scan isn't an option. She go BANG!!

"You use a Fate point to survive the blast"
"I don't have any left, I've used them all"
"Oh, well ill give you one and you can use that "

Ermm.......okay :/ Thanks??

A few minutes later the blast sight is full of serfs, hammers at their belts, carrying Baron No-Ore aloft as the rebellion seems to be starting without us. As this was not a valid outcome per Baron Harkonnen's orders Ryan lines up a headshot from his perch above the throng.

"Just so you know killing No-Ore will likely see you lynched by serfs!"
"But I'm an assassin, they can't touch me!"
Just so you know killing No-Ore will likely see you lynched by serfs!"
"I'm on a ledge 30 metres above them in shadow!"
Just so you know killing No-Ore will likely see you lynched by serfs!"

Suddenly it's 15 minutes later. Rob and Charlie are with the Baron being carried to the surface toward the Arbite Central command. Ryan has magically appeared on a different ledge with excellent scope access. I'm unconscious in a Physic Bomb crater under rocks!

Through his scope Ryan overhears an old lady praising No-Ore for his glorious return and presents her sick son for his blessing. The boy's eyes light-switch to 99% luminosity at which point Ryan's superior initiative literally blows off his head at which point the lad beheads his mother with his hands! Cue screaming and hundreds of undead types emerging from any and every available crevice!

It being half 9 and Mr C reckoning that we can't fit in the final final encounter we generate some Star Wars EotE characters.....

Once again this isn't a dig, more a commentary / tale of caution. We've all played our part in this, we the group have got used to openly commenting about plot armour and Mr C's unwillingness to kill us. As such we have tended to goof off. Both "sides" fuel the other, if we'd felt empowered, challenged etc it would have been far less :/

Generally speaking its been fun, the occasional issue hasn't got in the way too much but we seem to have set the cycle and its time for something else...... :)

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