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Game Assassin, Viktor Slivent

   
Game Assassin, Viktor Slivent

Viktor Slivent, Militant Rogue/Barbarian

I have officially laid to rest my favorite character that I've ever created here on the Weave. He was a Jason Bourne type, a calculating rogue and deadly warrior. Unfortunately he also became known (by me) as the GM assassin. I managed to get Viktor into 5 different games and these were the results:

Game 1: Game fizzled in the opening scene, players quit posting, GM lost interest. Game died

Game 2: New Forgotten Realms one shot with a rookie GM, Viktor is reskinned. We made it 3/4 of the way through the mini adventure with a good group. GM vanishes from MW, never to be seen again.

Game 3: Viktor is reskinned and in the Forgotten Realms city of Melvaunt. In the first battle the GM announces he has to leave MW for Health reasons

Game 4: Pathfinder this time, Viktor Lives again! Duo game in Golarion. Opening scene, GM announces his life is too hectic and can't run the game. Another one bites the dust!

Game 5:At this point I had given up, Viktor was on life support and I almost pulled the plug after taking down 4 GM's. But Wait! I get a PM from a GM of another game in the Forgotten Realms again that Viktor had applied for but was not chosen. They lost a player and needed a replacement! Yes! Viktor makes a miraculous recovery from his coma and is inserted into the game. I even warned the GM of Viktor's record of assassinating GM's but he assured me that all would be fine. Great! Viktor begins play and we go for a few months and you guessed it, GM gets promoted at his RL job and can no longer run a game. Despite a valiant effort by one of the players to keep the game going, sadly it died.
Viktor is 5 for 5, the undefeated conqueror of GM's!

Known Alias': Purvis Doolittle, CLoth Merchant from Melvaunt, Beldar the Bold, Barbarian Berserker.

Wanted! By the Zhentarim for botching a job and costing them men and profit. Dead or Alive.

Now Viktor lies in state, his gaming and GM killing spree is done and I mourn his loss, even if it was my own dagger that felled him. The killing spree had to end, I did what had to be done. Rest well Viktor.

Does anyone else have such a dastardly track record of game killing and GM assassinations? I think not, but I await your responses!

Viktor is cold-hearted for sure, but I prefer bringing about the inevitable and eventual demise of all my games with as many characters as humanly possible.

This is a fun and tongue-in-cheek thread, Root, but it speaks to a serious (perhaps even chronic) problem apparently: GMs that just up and quit.

Look, I'm no saint by any means, and I've surely ended games before they've done the whole "level 1-20" epic thing. But in my almost-decade of PbP playing and GMing, I've run a total of three actual games. The first one lasted three years; the second one lasted two and change; the third one just hit its three year anniversary. I've never found it all that difficult to stick with the story I'm running but clearly other folks do.

So here's my question: why start a game if you know you're going to kill it a week or two weeks later? I get that health concerns trump online gaming every time, so let's just forget that one and chalk it up as entirely legitimate. Bad stuff happens and this is just a hobby; I get that. Exceptions happen.

But in the vast majority of cases, GMs aren't quitting before the second battle (what I like to call the "Sandpoint Glassworks Syndrome") because of health concerns. So again, I ask: why start a game - recruitment, culling applications, selecting players, refining characters, getting your campaign page in order, setting the stage, etc. - just to quit almost immediately afterward? I usually can empathize and figure this sort of thing out, but I admit that this problem has left me dumbfounded over the last ten years or so.

Speaking of game assassins, beware Halustar, aka Alustar, Alistair and maybe a few other similar names. Despite his cheerful demeanor, his portly but still handsome build, his undeniable arcane power and his love of bling, he has killed at least three Scales of War games in the early going. It happened so fast I actually lost track, it may well have been four.

@TheRoot

The current game that we're starting in, my Conjurer, Quinton has been the slayer of at least six DM's here on the Weave since I joined in 2009 thus far. Quinton has also taken the careers of several IRL would-be DMs. Three total at this point.


Online Weave games
  • Weave 1 - DM flaked out. No word as to what happen. Bad first impression, as I got into two Weave games right away when I first joined. Both had DM's vanish. This however was the first with the Conjurer.

  • Weave 2 - Quinton went evil for a game. DM however vanished again shortly after the opening post of the game.

  • Weave 3 - Quinton returned to the side of good. Though he'd take a stab at gestalt this time. However the DM kept falling before him. Another vanishing without a word.

  • Weave 4 - Shedding his Gestalt once again, he jumped about a high flying air ship adventure. The DM however claimed to get sick promptly as we went into the first encounter. She appeared once more briefly to apologize she was still sick after about a week. Never returned again after that.

  • Weave 6 - Back to basics. The DM took a very large group of players however. Two groups of five each. The DM quickly realized he'd over-burdened himself. The game slowly fizzled out, as the DM became less and less engaged. He ghosted and vanished.

  • Weave 6 - Changing his name, Quinton tried another Gestalt game. The DM claimed to be having internet issues (though another player that was a friend outside of the site). Never returned. The *friend* also vanished shortly thereafter as well.

  • Weave 7 - (Current) Quinton under another alias has become a vigilante is another large gestalt game. The results of this massive 10+ player undertaking have yet to be decided.

  • Weave 8 - (Current) Private game that DM contacted myself and yourself about. End results - To be determined.


Only one of the online DM's has actually returned(at least under their original name) to the site.

Real Life Games
  • IRL 1 - Game at local gaming store. DM just stopped showing up. No contact info available.

  • IRL 2 - Found group through Wizard's forums at the time. DM however was military and ended up being re-stationed. We made it through about 5 sessions. One level up. (included as was a Quinton game, but I dont count as a DM murder)

  • IRL 3 - Another local group found via internet. Rookie DM. Game started with Quinton getting a natural 20 charisma check for the first roll in a campaign that I was told completely derailed the entire planned first story arc. She had no idea how to restructure. I advised her that she could just ignore the roll or treat it differently if it helped her. This apparently was not the correct answer. She got mad. We limped through like half a session, before she left, along with the rest of the group. The rest of the group was her boyfriend and another one of his college buddies. They stopped answering my phone calls and emails.

  • IRL 4 - Local gaming store (different store from IRL1) - DM spazzed out. Stopped coming to store without a word.

Hopefully, as I was reached out to directly from someone that wanted to run for me, the results for Weave 8 will finally end with a decent run for Quinton the Summoner.

@guitarist All things must die at some point do they not?
@leons1701 Thanks for the warning!

@ArcaneDesperado Wow! You sir get a sticker and some stars! That is quite a record of game killing. Let's hope the track record comes to an end currently!

@Raistlinmc I'll just say up front that obviously there are things that come up in Life unexpectedly and we never know when we are going to be victim of old Murphy and his annoying law!

I think one of the biggest issues is we all to some degree struggle to balance gaming with our real lives. Obviously most of the people who frequent this site find gaming fun (though the definition of fun varies quite a lot between individuals) and we love to game. We struggle, myself included, to get the right amount of PbP games on our list to make up for the lack of TT games.

Being a GM is a pretty big commitment and I think it is easy to underestimate how much work it can be to manage a game and even further underestimate the amount of time it can take. If you're not careful you can get behind, juggling games and real life and the next thing you know, anxiety and pressure starts to build to move the game along and it becomes easier to just stay away. Add in some RL pressures and it can become even easier to ditch out. I'm not saying this is ok, but I definitely get it. Communication in OOC can help tremendously and honesty goes a long way.

I don't want to make too long of a post but I'll bullet point a few other reasons I think this happens:
1. Players can be obnoxious sometimes and cause serious headaches for a GM, especially when there is a lack of respect for the GM.
2. Creativity comes in waves and isn't always a consistent flow for some people
3. With so many players applying, an open add game is a real crap shoot to put together a good group that finds chemistry.
4. Many different play styles and it is seldom that the same styles wind up in a game that isn't privately put together.
5. Poor communication kills games like Atilla the Hun
6. Sub category of number 1, Rules Lawyers, Mega Optimizers, lazy posters, and Special Snowflakes can really suck the wind out of a GM, especially if the GM does not handle confrontation well or simply cannot use the word no. A game can be cruising along after selection until BAM! One of these becomes obvious and the GM realizes they made a big mistake.
7. One last issue I see a lot is players that get into LONG lists of games and when they post it is obvious that they didn't read the GM post well at all and frequently ignore what the other players are doing or saying. This one makes cohesion and story telling really sporadic and hard to follow, making the game less and less interesting.

All valid points. But whereas others might quit in the face of characters that drive them nuts, I just kill 'em and on we roll.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Raistlinmc View Post
All valid points. But whereas others might quit in the face of characters that drive them nuts, I just kill 'em and on we roll.
I think I like you even more Raistlin, ha ha

There is some merit to "Rocks fall, this one specific character dies."

Make sure to keep annoying player vs annoying character separate. An annoying character, as the DM you can try and talk to the player and get them to dial something back if its going to destroy the dynamic of the group not working. If not, the character generally gets themselves into a situation that'll get them killed anyways, without magical two ton rocks materializing over their heads. If its the player themselves, its another story.

If its gotten to a point where it's resorted to no other option but the cliche joke of "rock falls, character dies", I've failed somewhere along the way as a DM.







 

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