How do you Handle Meta Gamers? - Page 4 - Myth-Weavers


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How do you Handle Meta Gamers?

Originally Posted by Black_Valor View Post
I'm sorry I don't understand this problem.
Basically it boils down to the fact that some players are going to see your RP not as an adventure to go on or an experience to be had but as a game to win. And they are going to use every tool at their disposal to win, even if it spoils things for everyone else.

And that behavior comes in many, many flavors some of which have been described here. But the thing they all have in common is that they are disruptive to the flow of the game because the player does not care about said flow.

A good approximation I like to bring up to those not used to text RP is the kind of player that plays a video game RPG and looks up the dialog trees on a wiki to see what choice gives him the best loot as opposed to roleplaying through the game. Now imagine playing coop with such a person if you want to roleplay your character and he keeps picking seemingly random things for the loot.

Originally Posted by Black_Valor View Post
In either philosophical understanding, neither metaknowlege nor power gaming is possible.
What you say is, well, not correct.

Even if a character is in some way "the chosen one", this does not equate to complete omniscience. Even if they really are a super-special snowflake, this doesn't mean that they are all-powerful, all-knowing, and without flaws. Only a Sith deals in absolutes!

Likewise, just because a farmer knows where the wolves are near him (and I would say that perhaps this is metagaming, but it's an example of perfectly acceptable storytelling), this doesn't mean that he also knows who killed the King's brother, the answer to the genie's riddle, and the True Name of the Elder God Xorvriataal.

"Powergaming" is just as much a sliding scale. You've said that the characters are exactly so powerful, which is why you've set the starting level to be whatever it is... if some players are less powerful than that, and others are more powerful than that, you (potentially) have a problem. I don't run a game with L6 heroes and say, well, they're the heroes, they should be able to one-punch Elder Evils! I'd have made them L10 or something if I wanted them to do that.

Originally Posted by Black_Valor View Post
Remember these people are actors doing what they do best. You should direct them, not micromanage them.
I think that this is the main criticism - it's not players who are powergaming who are the problem (though that could cause problems in its own right), it's players who are powergaming but also not "acting". They're playing a completely different game to you - so how do you address that?

"You are playing what amounts to a completely different game from the rest of us. Are you going to play the same game, or are we unnecessary to your enjoyment of your game, meaning we can leave?"

OMG This blew up bigger than expected.

OK, So After reading ALL 4 pages (at the time of writing this) I have learned alot of how everyone likes to deal with these types of characters.

To Clarify: I was thinking about the Karma system as a possible option and was on the fence hence why I outsourced the idea to everyone here.

My Response to your answers: Yep... I see it as a bad idea now.

What I will be doing for my next game where I have stated I have 3 players who follow either the: 'Build Character for Stats only without RP implications' and 'Uses Secret knowledge that should have only been available to specific people'

A) I told ALL the players that considering the Story is highly focused on the Party as a whole, individual RP sessions aka shore leave or minor discussions with NPCs may be reduced to skill checks unless impacting the party as a whole.

B) I've enlisted the aid of a fellow DM to help me build encounters to be Appropriate for the setting and level of what the players should be able to handle.

C) As for the RP stuff I'm building a sandbox setting were player choice develops where the story goes. I do this for alot of games naturally anyway because I like the idea of having an Evolving universe and the players just happening to be in these situations due to their choices in character. As for Throwing any twists into the mix depends on how they develop.

D) As above on the free form I'm allowing Friendly Fire, at least for this specific game due to the fact that the players are supposed to be playing Pirates and I have notified them of this. AND since one of them deemed to take the captain role I pretty much will be hands off when it comes to policing the players as the rest are to be his crew.

My view as the dm is to build the world and develop an organic flowing story that the players will be going with. NPCs will react accordingly if a PC decides to spout off knowledge that is supposed to be unknown to them without the associated knowledge roll. (afterall random trivia could be a thing but even then that would not get you a True Name). I do not mind so much if players use past knowledge of creatures. Thankfully with this new game we are using the StarFinder system and I'm quite sure these players have not played anything so all the information should be fresh and new for us all, including myself outside of what I can read within the books.

SO yes... the idea is to discuss it and make sure you have your players understand how the system will be handled. Really thank you all for your insight.

Originally Posted by TheFred View Post
I think that this is the main criticism - it's not players who are powergaming who are the problem (though that could cause problems in its own right), it's players who are powergaming but also not "acting". They're playing a completely different game to you - so how do you address that?

This ^^^

I do not mind powergaming. In fact multiple times I've Enjoyed seeing a strong character and have been that strong character. The issue is that the examples I am using are players who build specific types of characters but only end up acting like themselves.

I believe I put the example of the 20 intelligence Monk/Witch who was supposed to be Lawful but all their in character actions were motivated by OOC beliefs. Thus making the character come off as an Unlawful Murdering Defiantly Chaotic Sociopath. And WHY? ... because the player got bored due to appropriate Story related RP.

GRANTED giving the player the benefit of the doubt: The RP did drag on a bit longer than needed. Of course that too was due to the player's OWN actions on having this LAWFUL character be running interference on the specific RP scenario because once again, "He was bored" when if he didn't we would have gotten on with the appropriate plot and been ahead instead of the campaign slowing to a dead halt for everyone else.

Originally Posted by Arden View Post
Or ya know a level 1 character in a scene of DRAGONs attacking a village, decides to jump and ride on one of thier heads. (Funny yes: Survivable no) only to complain when the dragon obviously eats him.
As someone who's played this type of character, and someone who's played alongside another player who did this sort of thing regularly, I can tell you a little bit about why I and the other player did it.

One of the reasons I did it because I was bored. I was looking for excitement, and because I wanted my character to be able to do cool things and live. A little part of it was attention seeking and feeling like other players were getting more screen time, or they got to do stuff I wanted to do but couldn't (because of a poor build, or sucky rolls or whatever.) I used roleplaying as a stress reliever after a long day or week at work where I had to be calm and rational and serious despite the dramas and stupid people I had to deal with, so doing crazy stuff was a release. It was a creative outlet. (Difference here though is that I could sense when this was pissing people off too much and could pull back.)

The other reason I did it (and the other player who did) was because it was out of the box stuff and I needed to get creative because otherwise the character could contribute very little to some situations. The bard did crazy athletic leaps around the bad guys because he couldn't hit hard, but he could aid another, or distract with flashy moves, or nick potions off a belt to stop them being used, or any other way he could look at the skills/abilities he had and find unusual ways to use them so he could help the party.

That said, neither of those characters were power builds. We liked taking characters with limitations and coming up with new uses to get around them. Our GM also didn't mind this sort of thing because it made the game interesting for him, and he could use our same tactics against us. Once we realised we were giving him ideas... well it didn't stop us, but we were a little more cautious and started to plan against it more. The crazy antics were a scream when they succeeded and we'd talk about them for weeks, but they didn't always succeed and we accepted the consequences.

One other thing... The GM once changed a character's alignment to better match the character they were playing. So they got hit with a spell that usually would have bounced off because of alignment, but this one got through. If they worshipped a specific deity, their spells stopped working reliably. We had NPCS react negatively to character actions which meant sometimes higher prices or loss of loot/help from them. The GM introduced a reputation stat for the group as a whole, with a separate one for characters. A high positive stat meant more quests coming our way and help when we needed it, easier charm, haggle, diplomacy, while a negative one made it much harder to get around, harder to sell or buy gear/loot, easier to intimidate, but it also meant NPCs were more hostile on sight.

I have a tendency to incidentally murder my metagamers.

Not out of active maliciousness... but because they do incredibly stupid, suicidal things, and then act surprised when their characters die because of their suicidal stupidity. Always with the "I didn't think you'd actually kill us" excuses afterwards.

Examples include, but are not limited to, the following...

Suggested Listening while you read.

1- Using a magical grenade on the enemy... which had currently surrounded them... by dropping it at their own feet.

2- Leaving a wounded and unconscious ally in the car outside while the rest of the team went to explore the Evil Spooky Place. A character that they wounded as part of the Magic Grenade incident mentioned above. Total Player Kill. Though I did show some mercy and let someone else come to rescue the one left in the vehicle- wasn't her fault everyone else blew her up and left her in the truck to die.

3- Trespass on private property. Find presumed owner of property aiming shotgun on his face. Instead of doing as told and leaving, choose to walk toward said farmer while talking. Get shot (and it was a crit, no less- not that a crit was actually necessary- world of darkness game, where guns actually mean something). Act like it's the GM's fault.

4- Start completely unnecessary fight with wild animals (they were basically alien hippos) which had showed no interest in your characters and were, in fact, digging through the dirt for roots to eat. Better yet, engage the large well-armored animals in melee combat. TPK.

... One of the characters who did this was a D&D Ranger.

5- Same campaign, different characters. Trapped in a pit that's been dug into what is essentially limestone. Player starts digging hole into wall. Nobody else thinks to stop him. He gets upset when this causes a wall to collapse on top of them. THEY actually survived (D&D, a cave-in is totally survivable), but the epic bitch-fest (and the fact that the other half of the party killed themselves by starting unnecessary fights) killed the game.

6- Use superpowers to break into a supertech military base. Get discovered because they decided to explode a wall to break into a room, instead of... anything else... they didn't even check the door to see if it was unlocked because "it's probably got an alarm". It was an internal door.

7- Fight their way out- they're doing okay in the corridors, so they decide to go into the wide open area (so, y'know, they can fight all of them at once instead of using a chokepoint).

8- Steal an attack helicopter to escape. ... Did I mention not a single one of them had any skill in flying? As a matter of fact, only one of them knew how to drive. Long story short, their escape was blown out of the sky before it got off the ground.

9- Let's not even count the times when someone tried to god-mod the NPCs to do whatever they wanted, or otherwise assumed that they get to do whatever they want in non-combat scenarios just because they're the PCs.


And every last time, at least one player acts like it's *my* fault that they got themselves killed, arrested for crimes ranging from theft to sexual assault, or otherwise blocked off all possibility of advancing their goals because they've earned a reputation as potentially schizophrenic psychopaths.


So, yeah, that's been *my* experience with metagamers.

Frankly, if I had a player come along whose only crime was to use OOC knowledge to his advantage, I would welcome him. If only because that level of intelligence and planning would be a refreshing change of pace to the type I usually get saddled with.

Originally Posted by Sephirothsword117 View Post
I thought for sure the song was going to be Yakkity Sax, AKA The Benny Hill Theme.
... I wish I had thought of it...


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