World:Crossroads Inn/DM Procedures

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Crossroads Inn/DM Procedures Index


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Do you want to be a Crossroads Inn DM? If so, please review all of the following data and then contact the head GM.


Contents

DM Prerequisites and Restrictions

  • To qualify for acceptance as a DM for the Crossroads Inn, you must have GMed at least one other game on Myth-Weavers that had an active IC thread for at least 3 months of real time.
  • This game uses the SRD and the House Rules only for the purposes of character creation and rules. That applies to DMs as well as players, but feel free to refluff anything you wish. We advise against using homebrew content, but so long as you're following the RAW and House Rules, and feel confident about your ability to determine CR and power level, it's allowed.
  • DMs that flake will be removed from the game. For this game, unannounced absences of 2 weeks count as flaking. Should a DM that flaked wish to return at a later date, a new posting history of three months will have to be established first elsewhere on the Weave.
  • In the event a DM does flake, an affected PC needs to utilize Room 0 to contact the Head GM to report it. All affected PCs will then be magically teleported back to the Inn and given a consolation reward. While the reward doesn't make in game sense, it does keep the players happy and show them we appreciate them sticking around even when things are tough.
  • Do not delete or edit others' comments, IC posts, etc. without explicit permission. Exceptions are for correcting grammar/spelling, and obscenities the word filter doesn't catch. Players using them should politely be reminded of site policy.
  • DMs must always be polite, even when players are not. Malicious rudeness from a DM is grounds for permanent dismissal from the game. DMs must also ensure site-wide rules are always followed, to include the PG-13 policies.
  • It is a DM's responsibility to alter character threads for the players in their adventures when necessary. Each time XP/IG are earned or equipment in changed, there should be a corresponding post in the player's private thread.
  • Only the Head GM may approve or make changes to the static Crossroads Inn setting. Doing so requires an announcement to all DMs a week in advance and that all appropriate amendments in the wiki and game threads are made.
  • DMs must submit an outline of their first intended adventure (or the actual adventure) to the Head GM to be accepted as a DM. Using a pregen module is acceptable. Application to be a DM can be done through use of Room 0. Include your adventure outline, gaming experience and other data you deem relevant.
  • DMs must have access to a copy of the PHB, DMG and MM. The SRD is not good enough, because it doesn't have all the information a DM actually needs to participate in the Crossroads Inn setting.

DM Standard Operating Procedures

Every DM must:

  • Participate in DM Board Discussions as they are able.
  • Vote on all voting threads created by the Head GM as quickly as possible, but no later than 1 week after initial posting.
  • Give rewards of IG (Inn Gold) in accordance with WBL as a quest reward.
  • Only start an adventure if you intend to finish it.
  • Notify your group in an OOC manner if you expect to be unable to meet your own posting requirement.
  • Not add on your own special mechanics (as applying to the players OR NPCs) for any given adventure (without appropriately adjusting EL and/or CR).
  • Lock and Archive threads promptly as they are no longer needed.
  • Start and end each adventure by offering the Players the opportunity to buy from the Basic and Advanced Item Malls.
  • Roll publicly for Advanced Item Mall purchases.
  • Hand out xp at least every time the PCs rest during an adventure. It is acceptable to give xp more often, but not less.
  • Maintain character threads with needed updates for all PCs in their current adventure(s).
  • Remember that players make dumb mistakes just like anyone else.
  • Report any instances of definite cheating to the Head GM upon discovery.
  • Not use your own PCs in your adventures, or give XP or IG to NPCs.
  • Behave appropriately.
  • Have fun.

Altering Character Sheets

Generally, it is the player's responsibility to edit and maintain their own character sheet. Should you notice a mistake or something that doesn't seem right, use the player's private thread to call it to their attention.

Calculating Adventure XP and IG Rewards:

blind-justice.png

These are the most crucial steps for a DM at the Crossroads Inn. The entire game hinges upon the notion that the game is relatively balanced within the scope of the SRD rules. The absolute fastest way to unbalance the game is to make an error in these specific calculations, so please, even you are the ghost of Bobby Fischer, please always use a calculator when making these calculations.

Determine Approximate Advert Adventure XP:

Adventure XP is determined to include in your advert so that players can know roughly what their rewards will be to help decide if they want to join the adventure, as well as give them a potential indicator as to how long the adventure may be (though most adventures should aim to raise PCs one level).

  • Step 1) Determine total adventure XP. Add up all planned encounter xp (aim for advancing the characters somewhat past the next level mark as that way they will be able to achieve a new level, even if they miss or fail some encounters). Please note this is only an approximate figure. The PCs may earn more or less depending on if they engage in lots of extra RP and social challenges, or perhaps if they skip some encounters or perhaps a team mate dies. All of these things can have an effect on the total XP earned and how it is split.
  • Step 2) Determine number of players. How many adventurers are you taking?
  • Step 3) Divide the total XP by how many adventurers there are. So, if you have an adventure worth 10000 XP and 4 adventurers, the expected XP for each is ~2500.

Giving XP Rewards

Always keep a note of how much XP the character started the adventure with (you will need this later for calculating IG rewards).

Remember to give out XP (but not IG) every time the characters are given a rest point. You can give out XP more often, but not less.

To give an XP reward, add up the XP for the party and divide by the total number of adventurers. Apply XP and allow characters to level at rest points.

Remember, you can opt to give a player XP for an encounter they died in (if you feel they made a significant enough contribution), but not an encounter they did not participate in at all.

IG rewards are not given out until the end of the adventure. Appropriate IG is given out even if the party fails the mission.

Determine Adventure IG Reward:

Once the adventure is over, the players will want to receive their final XP bonus and IG reward so they can go to the enchanter and item mall. This formula can get a little bit complex, so make sure you understand it well or ask someone for help if you're having trouble.

The Automatic Method


The Manual Method

  • Step 1) Check the XP of the character from the beginning of the adventure (always have this number recorded in the character sheet until the PC leaves the adventure). Determine the percentile of XP within 10% increments (do not round or truncate).

For the purposes of an example we will be using Bob the Barbarian.

Bob the barbarian has 689 XP and is level 1 at the start of the adventure. His IG currently should approxamately reflect 60% of WBL. Why? Because level 2 is 1000 XP, ten percent of that is 100 xp. 689/100 is 6 (do not round or truncate). 6 x 10% is 60%

Please note the actual IG total of the character can be altered by participation in the Arena Battles, through premature adventure release, purchasing an item and unused starting wealth.


  • Step 2) Determine what percent of IG Bob [I]should[/I] have. Do not factor starting wealth (starting wealth is an inherent class benefit balanced to the class).

We know that Bob should have 60% the Level 2 WBL. With a quick reference check on p.135 of the DMG we can see 900 IG is the total WBL for 2nd level. 60% of 900 is 540 IG (900x.6=540). Note: This is the expected total, though his actual total may vary.


  • Step 3) Apply total XP. Bob earns a whopping total of 3879 XP from his adventure. His new total is 4568 XP.


  • Step 4) Determine what Bob's new percent of IG is. With a quick check of the XP chart on p.22 of the PHB we can see that Bob is now 3rd level. The difference between lv 3 and lv 4 is 3000 points and the level starts at 3000 XP. We can now determine that Bob has 1568 of the 3000 he needs (current '4568' minus lv 3 '3000' = 1568/3000)


  • Step 5) Determine Bob's new percent of IG

Since the total for the level earned is 3000, that means each 10% mark is 300 XP (3000/10 = 300).

We now divide the current total by the 10% mark: 1568/300 = 5 (remember, do not round or truncate).

5 groups of ten percent is 50%. (5x10=50)


  • Step 6) Determine new IG total

Bob should have 100% the WBL for level 3 plus 50% of the difference from lv 3 to lv 4. Level 3 is 2700, Level four is 5400 IG, making the difference 2700. We know that 10% of 2700 is 270. We have five groups of 10%, so we multiply 270x5= 1350 + lv 3 '2700' = 4050.

THIS IS NOT THE REWARD! Please continue.


  • Step 7) Determine IG reward. We know that by all accounts Bob should have roughly 540IG from the start. That is subtracted

from the new total. 4050 - 540 = 3510. This is Bob's [I][U]actual reward[/U][/I].


  • Step 8) Apply reward. We now apply the reward... what's this? Bob only has 4 IG? How can that be? [U]Remember[/U], this total can be altered by participation in the Arena Battles, through premature adventure release, purchasing an item and unused starting wealth. We add 3510 to Bob's IG total making his new total 3514.

We now make a note of the change in his personal thread and offer him a chance to visit Tim the Enchanter or Mingot's Emporium now that the adventure is concluded. Please note, each PC will need their IG reward calculated separately as each will have different XP totals and WBL % when starting (unless the group is doing their first adventure together).

Optional: If we are especially concerned we can Audit Bob's sheet by first checking the cost all pieces of gear to ensure accuracy. Then we add up the total. We then check his personal thread for any GM notes about early release or arena battles.

This should give us an accurate reading of what his new total should be. If there is a discrepancy we bring it up with the head GM. In all likelihood the player is not to blame for the error as they are not allowed to alter their character sheet.

RP Note: If I don't know what the reward is, how do I include it as part of my RP scenes? That's pretty simple, give the players a sack of gold or a chest or a diamond that is worth an unnamed amount to Szaabo the moneychanger. If it comes up where the player wants to "count their money" you can say simply "yes, it is all there".

Policies

Policies for DMs are not hard rules, they are recommendations to help deal with the scope of this project.

Good Housekeeping

Keep things organized. Put threads in the proper places and clean up messes you see even if you did not make them. Similarly, please do not post in threads that are locked and pinned. To add something to these please post a discussion thread in the DM Suite.

It is suggested DMs limit each game board thread to:

  • An IC thread for the adventure.
  • An OOC thread for substantial OOC chatter and messaging.
  • A public notes thread, used for keeping track of spells per day, HP and similar often changed information. (optional)
  • A private DM notes thread. (optional)
  • The private character sheet threads for involved players.

First Come First Serve

While a party might have certain restrictions or requirements for a particular kind of adventure you wish to run, the goal is generally to accept everyone and keep the games moving. If you need a cleric, that's fine. If you need a party of elves only and they must each be level 4, a ranger, a druid, a paladin, and a sorcerer that are also your best buddies and the same party from your last 3 adventures then we are defeating much of the core purpose of the Crossroads Inn.

Level Spread

Always strive for zero level variance between players for an adventure. Under level 10, all PCs must be the same level to adventure together and proceeding otherwise requires explicit permission from the Head GM for each adventure. The better solution is to have players run solo adventures to catch up to other characters.

Once level 10 is achieved a spread of +1 OR -1 level is acceptable, though not both without the Head GM's explicit permission for each adventure. The better solution is to have players run solo adventures to catch up to other characters.

Treasure

Because characters cannot keep custom items and are limited to 1/2 their WBL for keeping magic items, you are free to hand out whatever you wish within an adventure. When you do give out items that characters will not be able to keep after the adventure, make sure they know that. The name of the item on their character sheet should be followed by <c> or <custom> to make removing these items at the end easier.

Play Group Size

Our target for adventure group size is 3-5. Solo and duet adventures should be run only on an as-needed basis for characters without others to play with at their level. Larger groups are not recommended, but are allowed.


Problem Players

If you identify that you are having a problem with a particular player in your game, inform the Head GM on the GM board. Do not engage the player further once you've determined you're having a problem. The Head GM will inform you how to proceed, possibly giving the duty to one of the founders depending on their current workload and availability.

Attendance

Penalties for players for not meeting the posting requirements are subject DM discretion, however, The Crossroads Inn staff recommends the following policy:


The first time it happens without notice, wait only as long as the adventure's post rate before you NPC the character. You are free to do that in whatever fashion you prefer. Keep track of how many times it happens and send the player a PM when you do so. We suggest giving them four chances until you move on to:

The final time it happens, take over the character and remove them from the party at your earliest convenience, whether this is death or simple separation from the group. The character is considered dead no matter how you separate them, and they receive no XP or IG reward for the adventure.

In the event you are given notice of an absence, make every effort to NPC the character according to the player's wishes.

Voting

  • When a new policy oriented topic comes up, it is given a thread. That thread is to remain in discussion for a minimum of 72 hours before going to poll. The purpose of this thread is to allow all those who have an opinion on the subject at hand to express it, and for questions to be asked and answered. All DMs are expected to participate in policy discussions as they are able.
  • If the discussion is not satisfactorily resolved, it will be put to poll by the Head GM (or by member request to the Head GM) to ensure that the poll is not edited by anyone. All arguments and points of view will be summarized and the poll will appear in this sub board for voting. Discussion is still allowed and encouraged in polls, particularly the kind that is solution oriented.
  • All Council Member DMs (and above) are on the board and are expected to check in for voting threads at least once per week.
  • You may change your vote to move towards a consensus (i.e., pick your second favorite viable option just to help move towards a solution) or if a new voting option appears. 65% votes in one direction decides a clear consensus and the poll can be closed. If the item is crucial and the result is a tie, then the Head GM vote is the tie breaker.


This method ensures that everyone will have a chance to be heard, however, not everyone will have a chance to get their way. The fact of the matter is we must subscribe to consensus to make this project work, even if that means certain things each of us would rather not do coming into effect. Remember, you can always run your own custom games, but here we must all operate in unison, for better or worse.


Some operating guidelines for voting:

  • No ad hominems. Attack the argument, not the person.
  • Keep things simple. Easy solutions are the best ones. Overcomplicating things hurts the project.
  • Less paperwork is better. We can always do more work, but do we want to if we don't have to? No, of course not.
  • FUN. In game drama is good, OOC drama is bad.
  • Participate. If you abstain, you forfeit your voice, so participate in the discussions as you are able.

Adverts

DMs are expected to post their quests in the game recruiting board. Use the basic format below to make sure all necessary information is included.


Thread Title: Include number of players and level requested.

  • Title: Name your ad something memorable that conveys a great idea about the type of campaign or adventure you wish to run. A title is optional but recommended.

Graphic_Not_Available_07-26-2011_011357.gif Use of a picture is recommended

  • Theme Music Link: (optional) Linking to a nice song on youtube can help set the stage for the mood you are trying to set for the players.
  • Flavor Text: Should you wish to provide some kind of flavor text to introduce your adventure, it goes here.
  • Posting Requirement: How many times a day, week or month are your players expected to post? This requirement should be the MINIMUM requirement to post without some sort of prior notification. The recommended rate is 1/day. If you wish to set a maximum number of posts per day without all players responding, you are free to, but it is not required.
  • Level of adventure and estimated rewards: Indicate the level the characters must be to start the adventure, as well as the expected amount of XP they will earn over the course of the adventure and the IG reward they will get at the end of it. It's okay if circumstances cause these numbers to change a little over the course of the adventure, but try to keep them accurate. Shoudl the XP change, make sure you adjust the IG appropriately.
  • Requesting "x" players: How many players do you need?
  • Special Restrictions/Requirements: Examples: No spellcasters, Elves only, all Wizards. If the party needs a particular class asset (such as: "must have a healer"), mention that here.
  • Setting: If you have a specific pre-made campaign setting you are using, post it here, otherwise list as "homebrew". Include optional data like "will be on the plane of fire" or "sub-zero temperature climate" if you want the players to be prepared for that.

Accepting Altar Sacrifices

Check first to see that the player has posted their qualifying post in the time frame required (by 11:59:59pm on Wednesday, EST).

1. Quote the player response.

2. Respond with something to the effect of: fortune smiles upon (PC name) as the sacrifice is accepted. This may/should be altered to suit the nature of the sacrifice. Submit the post in the altar thread.

3. Post in the private character thread:

Fortune has smiled upon (PC name) for his/her altar sacrifice. (PC name) is awarded (value) XP, (value) IG and (value) holiday season bonus (as appropriate). {Link the words 'altar sacrifice' to the relevant post in the Altar thread.}

4. To determine values, reference the character level, note the total number of XP from the minimum of their current level to the minimum of the next current level (for example character level 1 has 1000 xp) then divide by 100 to determine 1%.

5. If the character has received bonuses for a whole month, double this value (bringing their total for the month to 5% rather than 4%).

6. Add the XP to the character sheet. Be very careful not to change anything else.

7. Check the prior total XP value of the PC against the new total XP value of the PC on the IG Calculator to determine if there is any IG to be awarded. Reward all IG and Holiday Bonuses as appropriate, adding items and gold to the character's equipment.

8. If the new total puts the character into a new level, follow the leveling up procedure (see above). When this happens to a character currently in an adventure, include a reminder to the player in the post that leveling up will not actually occur until the next appropriate rest point. Also inform the DM separately that the character has leveled.

Renting a room

Characters may rent private rooms from the front desk. The primary purpose of private rooms is to allow small group conversations to take place without being cluttered by general Pub chatter. They are intended to be used IC only, with related OOC chatter using either OOC tags or spoilers. Private rooms are private threads, but all DMs can see all private content in the entire game.

  • Room Prices: Players renting a single room can add up to seven other players to this private room at its creation. It will be locked and archived roughly when the time is up, unless the rental is extended. The type of room is subject to GM whim, the GM will include a picture of the room in the opening post for the thread.

1 Week- 1 IG

1 Month- 4 IG

  • Guild Hall Prices: Players purchasing a guild hall can add up to twenty-four other players to this private room at its creation and add up to twenty-five total on the guestlist at any time. The renter decides who stays and goes. The hall will be locked and archived roughly when the time is up, unless the rental is extended. Year long rentals will become pinned threads. The Guildhall type (picture used) is subject to renter whim (but cannot be changed later, a new room must be rented).

1 Month- 5 IG

1 Year- 50 IG

All DMs are expected to answer requests at the front desk. All DMs are expected to lock and archive expired rooms.

Procedure for when a room is purchased:

  • The player posts desire to rent in the Front Desk thread and provides a link to his character thread. He must include the usernames of any player he wishes to allow in the thread.
  • If it is a guildhall rental the player may decide the name of the hall in place of their character name as well as a picture of the room they would like. Failure to do so indicates the name is defaulted to their character name and the picture will be generated by the DM.
  • The DM responds by quoting the request to buy post and stating the room number that is assigned as well as deducting the gold from the character in question in their character thread.
  • The thread is made private and named by Room Number (starting with 1001) and the name of the Renter (unless otherwise noted). Private names are added as needed but not removed unless there is a serious problem that would otherwise demand DM attention. Do not duplicate room numbers currently in use.
  • The picture is posted in the original post of the thread as well as the expiration date.
  • PCs can then immediately begin using the room. No transactions can take place between PCs in these rooms, only RP. Do not step in to resolve disputes unless requested to by one of the players involved.
  • Expiration dates can be extended by purchasing more time. Note: time is NOT pro-rated - when the PCs stop using the room, they don't get a refund for time not used. A room extension request is made just as an initial room request, but rather than create a thread, the expiration date of the existing thread is changed.

Managing the Adventure Board

  • Each Live Adventure when done with recruiting will be given its own sub board named after the room number used in the recruiting thread and the recruiting thread will be locked and archived when all players have been notified of being selected. The IC thread must be private.
  • DMs will then move the character threads to the sub board for easier access for both Players and the DM.
  • Upon game completion, all character threads will be sent back to the character boards and all other threads locked and sent to the adventure archives. The sub board will then be removed.
  • DMs that intend to refer to previous adventure threads should be sure to label each game thread by room number so they can more easily be found again.

Arena Battles

Do not post the map until spells are decided unless the terms state otherwise.

When you do post the map, be aware of any tactical situations that may arise such as cover, traps, etc.

Do not tell the players the mechanics ahead of time, let them figure out maneuvers on the spot.

Start the battle after all named parties have agreed to terms.

The Terms

Gormyr rents the space for 1 IG (any participant may pay this fee) and creates a magic geas contract for all parties involved to abide by (players can set terms like no potions, or to first blood or no wish spells or w/e). The person paying the fee generally sets the initial terms.

A single or multiple rounds of Sanctuary can be included in the terms to allow buffs to be used, but without explicitly stating so in the terms 0 rounds are afforded.

Combat is requested by the parties involved and all must post the terms and their agreement to the terms in the thread.

All participants must be of the same level without exception.

Running a combat is dependent upon having a willing DM to run the scenario, DM's may offer to run a scenario at any time.

DM's are free to set up maps however they see fit but should strive for neutral maps (providing equal cover, tactical situations, traps and such for each starting position).

Players can rule they do not want traps, cover or tactical situations in the terms.

Casters with prepared spell lists must enter their prepared spells.

All players must specify as part of their terms if any items are readied upon entrance, if they do not they are not considered to have any items readied.

Wagers

Every participant may wager up to 5 IG per level and all wagers must be equal for all participants.

Distribution depends on the terms for winning:

-Teams: Equal split to winning team. Teams must be equal in number, no more than 9 participants, may have up to 4 teams.

-Last man standing: 2/3 to the winner and 1/3 to second place (minimum 4 players, maximum 9)

-Duel: 100% to winner

Posting

Posting requirement is once every 48 hours after the turn of the prior person. Posts that are not made in this time indicate loss of turn. Posting must occur in initiative order. Posting can occur faster.

Posting dice that results in cheating tags, regardless of the reason, results as follows:

- The first time, the player automatically fails at everything rolled for in the post.

- The second time, the player forfeits the fight and gives up any potential share of treasure if they are in a team or last man standing scenario.

Results

No experience is earned or lost from combat participation, but consumable items used (if allowed) are gone.

The battle is concluded when the conditions for victory are met and the DM conducts all finalization (such as wagers).

After a battle characters are fully restored and returned to the inn minus a potentially a bruised ego.