last day (15 days later) » 

2:14 PM
Q: As the dungeon master, how do I handle a player that insists on a specific class when I already know that choice will cause issues?

RajI agreed to DM Dragon Heist for a group of my friends. One of them wants to play a wizard. Based on past experience, I know that she will ignore the prepared spells and just cast anything she wants. Our previous DM attempted to keep her to the rules, but she wore him down and eventually he caved ...

Why do you think they will cheat with a Wizard but not with any other class? If they just up and cast spells they don’t have, a Sorcerer can still do that (or a Fighter for that matter...) ? It seems to me like you’re pinning the real problem (a cheating player others are pressuring you to include) on a game mechanic detail to try to avoid the hard choices that will really solve the issue.
I take your point, and acknowledge that I am looking for an "easy" choice. At the same time, part of the Sorcerer's mechanic is actually that they don't have to prepare spells so I honestly think it would at least help in this scenario.
Does anyone else at the table care if she cheats? I would love to exclude her from the game, but I already know that the remainder of my friends would be unhappy tells me that this social situation trumps the game. If they don't care that she cheats ... then there may be a bit of an X-Y problem here.
@Tiggerous at least one or two other players are annoyed by it, but not enough to raise the issue with her. Also they expect me to deal with the issue myself, as the DM. I'll attempt to update the question accordingly
@Raj To me, this question seems to be: The player is going to play a wizard, and then try to cast spells they have not prepared. How do I handle a wizard player trying to cast a spell they have not prepared?
2:14 PM
@GcL That is much more succinct than what I said, and does describe the issue that I currently have. I am concerned (rightly or not) that the issue will become something else.
She forgets her character sheet? Out of curiosity, have you given any consideration to collecting everyone's character sheets at the end of each session and distributing them again at the start? (I'm not trying to stealth-answer in a comment, by the way; this just seems to me like a process that, by now, should've been tried and its results mentioned in the question.)
Unfortunately based on all your context I think it's going to be extremely difficult to come up with a universally happy solution to this problem. You've established that she knows she's breaking the rules, she doesn't care, she will argue about it until you cave, she is apathetic to solutions which might make keeping track of her prepared spells simpler, and the rest of your group will be unhappy if she's excluded. If you'll excuse the impoliteness, how old are you and your friends?
@HeyICanChan While I would prefer not to, I may have to seriously consider that option. I don't think that will address the core issue, though.
@Carcer I think you're right, and sorry if it seems I'm being difficult but I think all of the commenters are helping me. I'll update my post with an answer to your question.
@Raj I don't think you're being difficult at all, based on what you've said so far; it seems like you've just wound up in a pretty unlucky situation.
Loosely Related, insofar as "dealing with players bothering you":… . If nothing else, a good read for the querent.
2:16 PM
Thanks @Carcer. Although you're only hearing my side of the story.
is this player the only female in the group?
2:34 PM
ok. Does your group hang out outside of D&D? Is the player used to any kind of special treatment in that environment?
@goodguy5 @rubiksmoose, I don't think this belongs here
@Raj I'm not sure that's going to fix it, to be honest. Rangers still have spellcasting and there are other things they can 'cheat' with.
@NautArch Most likely wishful thinking, on my part.
I have reached out to her, and will talk to her as well as the rest of the players and try to determine what I can do to make the game fun for the entire group.
@Raj Doy ou track things like ammunition?
3:00 PM
we do track ammunition. i suppose that's another thing to look out for, although I feel I would be less likely to call out a player on having too much ammunition than i would be for them trying to cast a spell that they don't have prepared
i havent' dm'ed in a while, i'll update the question with that information
Those are things worth talking about with your players. I initially wanted to track rations/ammo, but then realized it's a pain and it didn't really help with my or anyone else's enjoyment.
I think Kryan has a lot of good ideas for you to consider. The biggest hurdle here for you will be your willingness to keep them honest and their willingness to accept limitations.
good point, @NautArch. i will make sure to raise that before session 1. we did track ammo in our previous campaign, and we were supposed to track rations but gave that up fairly quickly
all of the answers brought up good points, but kryan's was very well thought out and i think honestly the best
@Raj Yeha, it always seems like a good idea, but I've never actually enjoyed it. So many others things to manage as a player :) And it's fairly simple to make it unnecessary either by buying a lot of rations, or having a character that makes it unnecesary.
@Raj It's great ideas. Unsupported ideas (which is technically not a good answer), but it is good guidance.
3:27 PM
@Raj Do you think you/your players would be okay with digital character management? Dndbeyond is really good about this and would also allow you to 'watch' their choices.
our previous dm started out with roll20, but gave it up bc it turned it to a chore (mostly bc of player turnover)
i use dndbeyond in another campaign that i'm in, so i do like it. not sure about getting my players to all use it (different group), but i should at least raise the question with them
@Raj roll20 management is weird. But dndbeyond has the same issue of needing to purchase access to sourcebooks.
@Raj It's amazing for character gen/mangement. But you need to be okay with digital. I transitioned with my current character and really like it (but I do miss having paper sometimes.)
3:43 PM
I enjoy paper, personally, and being away from a screen for just a few hours. but at least a couple of my friends always have their computers in front of them during sessions, and maintain their characters online.
@Raj same. I use the phone app so i'm not taking up huge table space. But I do miss the simplicity of paper.
4:15 PM
digital makes it a lot easier to manage a character with a lot of moving parts like prepared spell lists and consumable resources and that jazz
5:02 PM
i think spell lists were my favorite part of roll20. i haven't used dndbeyond for a caster yet, myself
5:45 PM
@Raj I'm finally playing my first wizard and I'm loving the spell management. Had a paladin before, so was much more limited.
6:21 PM
i played a sorcerer, died twice, and switched to a cleric (light domain). my inclination is to go all in on evocation magic, but as i played i found it useful to pick up utility spells (locate object, etc). i have to say that mvp (mv spell?) for our last campaign was counterspell
one of the classes that i'm most interested in playing is a druid. i figure if you get bored of healing, you just shapechange
@Raj We had a light cleric in the campaign we just finished (1-20), and that was some serious damage dealing (and flares are amazing)
I've been trying to be a bit clever in my spell selections and not just focus on damage. My vengeance pally was a huge damage dealer, and I want to do some more battlefield control now.
6:42 PM
i picked light bc the party needed a healer but i still wanted to be able to cast fireball. in retrospect maybe i should've picked life, maybe not. my players will have 1 druid and 1 cleric for WDH, will be interesting to see what they pick and how it works out.
while having a paladin in curse of strahd was great, our second paladin got burnt out on the class from a purely RP perspective and is looking for something i think less serious
level 20 i'm guessing was homebrew, or dungeon of the mad mage?
@Raj homebrew. We've never played a published module :)
And our light cleric never used fireball. I didn't even know it was an option for them!
He didn't heal early on much, either. DPS cleric.
Why do they tink the pally is serious? I loved the options I had. In fights (mostly ranged) where I coudln't do anything, I was able to support/heal. Or utilize my cleansing touch, ec.
7:04 PM
yea, light clerics get a bunch of domain spells like flamestrike and scorching ray. on the battlefield, though, i actually had better outcomes using banishment
i didn't mean in terms of mechanics, i mean our 2nd paladin played as a goody goody which was difficult when the rest of the party wanted to steal from the burgomaster or loot tombs. maybe our group just doesn't have a good idea of how to RP a paladin
i enjoy the published modules mostly bc i know they are firmly entrenched in forgotten realms, but my dm for homebrew actually makes a ton of content himself so that is also fun
*in FR lore
@Raj Oh! He knows that 5e doesn't require goody goodies, right?
I mean, I was a vengeance paladin. That was pretty far from goody goody :)
I had a code and a goal. Anything that got in my way was, well, in my way.
7:20 PM
i'm not sure that any of us knew that. i may mention that, in session zero
the class description leans very heavily that way and goes on about how paladins are paragons of goodness, in fairness
Q: Are Lawful Evil Tiefling Paladins possible?

OtterchandraI'm creating my character for a new campaign, and as it's only my third campaign I'm struggling a bit. I have been wanting to make a Tiefling for a long time, initially I wanted her to be a warlock but I found that the personality I was giving her was a lot like my first character and my curren...

@Carcer It's weird. They say they're usually good, and then they go on to talk about the oaths being the factor.
@Raj I generally look at it as the oath powers the paladin. As long as you are following your tenets, you're a paladin of that oath. No all oaths are good. Not all interpretations of an oath are good. You can play the paladin you want to be :)
All the oaths given in the PHB are "good"-flavoured. Even vengeance is about specifically fighting evil and has the tenet about reparations to those who have suffered from evil
@Carcer True. Butyou can probably play with them to make it fit your character. And there's the oathbreaker.
But yeah, in general they're more 'good', but not necessarily 'goody goody'
I think that's the difference.
7:29 PM
You can be good, but you can do bad things in the name of good.

last day (15 days later) »