Rant: Dear D&D Player, Please Make An Adventurer

Rant: Dear D&D Player, Please Make An Adventurer


Hey, what the heck are you doing over there? Well itís breakfast time, and the people
at the inn I own are hungry. So why donít you hire a cook? Adventurers have lots of gold, you know. Oh, I know. I have lots of money. But I think Iíd rather be a cook than a barbarian. Holy crap, what at idiot. Do you know how ridiculous you look? Yeah, at least take that stupid apron off. Aww, but I like it. Itís ñ itís pretty! Welcome to the DM Lair. Iím Luke Hart, and Iíve been a dungeon master
since before you were born. On this channel I give practical dungeon master
advice that you can implement at your table. Okay, today weíre going to get right down
to brass tacks, and Iím not even going to do a plug trying to sell you any bull crap. Today weíre ranting about a topic near and
dear to my heart: Dungeons & Dragons players who create PCs who donít want to go on adventures. But it wonít just be a rant, I promise you. Iíll also have some advice for dungeon masters
who find themselves with a player or two like this on their hands. Now, what do I mean by PCs who donít want
to go on adventures? Youíve probably met or at least heard of
the sort on Reddit or something. The post usually starts off with some title
like ìMy D&D Group Decided to Run a General Store.î
And then the post goes on to describe how the players werenít extremely excited about
any of the adventure hooks the dungeon master was presenting to them, and decided instead
to set up their own general store in town and spend their game sessions running it. The post will describe how much fun it was,
how all the players were super engaged by it, and how itís wonderful that a game like
D&D can cater to such a wide variety of interests, even players who ñ well, donít really want
to play D&D as it turns out. What stories like that NEVER tell you, is
how frustrated the dungeon master was. They donít mention how hard they were working
to make exciting plot hooks for their players, only to be ignored. They donít tell you about all the adventures
the dungeon master created, all the time the DM spent doing that, only to have his players
basically give him the middle finger and wander off to start up a general store or whatever. You see, you never really get to hear both
sides of the story. And you never hear about what happened a few
sessions in, either. Running that general store was such great
fun, you see, that two players left that group to go find another group that ñ well, actually
played D&D. And the dungeon master, when he saw those
players leaving, began to wonder why he was even there. I mean, he certainly wasnít having any fun. And his players were just ignoring him anyway
and doing their own thing. Why the heck was he spending time prepping
a game session for running a general store of all things. I mean, is that even D&D? Where was the ranger sneaking through the
forest? The rogue backstabbing the villain? The paladin calling out to Torm as he charged
into battle? The wizard scrying the Big Bad in preparation
for an assault on his stronghold. The heroes saving the village from rampaging
orcs? What ever happened to the Dungeons & Dragons
that the dungeon master was excited to run for his players? His players, you see, gave it the shaft when
they went off to run a general store. Thatís right, that Reddit post never mentioned
how the DM emailed the remaining players, explaining that he simply didnít have time
to run the game anymore. Or maybe it did, and the OP says how it was
a shame because everyone was having so much fun. But were they? Really? Dungeons & Dragons is about the adventures. Itís about saving that village, or slaying
that dragon, or rescuing that princess. The adventures are the heart and soul of D&D. Can you run a general store on the side? Absolutely! My Ancient Dragon players run both a tavern
and a bakery ñ ON THE SIDE, while they are still going on adventures. But those other things take a back seat to
the adventures. So, back to our original dilemma: the player
who creates a character who doesnít really want to adventure. Meet Wilma, a level 1 fighter, who would rather
just continue in her fatherís footsteps as a blacksmith. She eschews the adventuring life, and just
wants to craft horse shoes, nails, and plowshares. A farmhouse under attack by raiders? Why would Wilma risk her life to save some
farmers? No, thatís work for the town guards. Wilma just wants to pursue her trade in peace. So whatís the problem with this, you might
ask? Wilmaís player is just roleplaying her character,
after all. And thatís what her character would do! Okay, well who created Wilma? Whose idea was it to make Wilma that way? Who decided to ignore the fact that this is
a GROUP game, and there are several other players who just want to go on adventures
and ñ you know ñ play the game. Wilmaís player is the one who created her
of course. That player is the one who decided to ignore
a major premise of the game ñ that the players are adventurers ñ to the detriment of the
rest of the players. And itís not just the dungeon master who
gets frustrated with Wilma. Donít you think the other players are pissed
off too that Wilmaís player is always making everything hard for the group? You better believe they are. And you know what THEIR characters would do? Leave Wilmaís anti-social butt behind in
the dust while they go off on adventures and play the stinking game. But they usually donít because THOSE players
are actually concerned about group dynamics and care about how their actions in the game
affect everyone at the game table. I tell all my players two things when they
are going to create characters. These are two requirements I have for all
PCs in my games. First, their characters must be willing to
stick with the group. I run a group game, and I will not run two
games simultaneously because one player decides they want to run off on their own. Not happening. Itís a group game, thank you very much. Second, their characters must be willing to
go on adventures. They must be adventurers. Donít roll into the first game session with
a pacifist barbarian who just wants to take up knitting and sell his wares in the marketplace. Again, not happening. Now for any players who feel Iím unfairly
limiting player agency, too bad. Thatís the game that I run. If those two simple rules ñ designed to head
off two huge pitfalls and sources of out of character conflict ñ are too much for you,
then Iím probably not the dungeon master for you. So, what do I recommend to fellow dungeon
masters who may find themselves with a player like this on their hands? As always, talk to your player. Explain why itís an issue, and explain that
it needs to change. If you get the classic argument of ìthatís
what my character would doî, then you need to counter with ìWell, then make a new character.î
Thatís right, have your player make a new character who IS motivated to go on adventures. I wouldnít spend one moment of hard work,
sweat, blood, and tears trying to motivate a PC who doesnít want to be an adventurer. Simply ask the player to make a new PC, or
change the existing one so that it fits into the game youíre running. As a dungeon master, you have the right to
run the game you want to run. Of course, you want to run a game that your
players enjoy, too, because if you donít youíll soon find yourself without any players. So, there is, as in most things, a balance
to be had there. However, asking a player to make a PC that
is willing to actually play the game that everyone is gathered around the table to play,
shouldnít be too much to ask. And if it is too much for that player, then
I would suggest that the player go find a different group and perhaps even a different
game besides D&D that is a better fit for them. Let me know if youíve ever had a player like
this and what you did. Next week Iíll probably be talking about
something D&D related and just a wee bit less ranty. But until then click here to learn about the
top 10 worst house rules ever. And until next timeÖ Letís play D&D!

100 Comments on "Rant: Dear D&D Player, Please Make An Adventurer"


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  2. Yeah, sure, if it's one player vs. the rest of a group, it's a problem. If it's an entire group, then let the campaign be centered around socialization and intrigue. You don't have to fight things in order to have a good story. I think the idea that if we're playing DnD we have to go into a dragon's lair or a a lich's crypt is incredibly antiquated. But yeah, if one player is ruining the fun for other players, then something's gotta change. I learned that the hard way not too long ago =

    Reply

  3. Dude if everyone at the table wants to run a store themed game
    Let it happen. It's not like it's impossible

    You might want to drink a bunch of water. Dilute all that salt.

    Reply

  4. in the middle of the night raiders set blaze to your general store…. you must want revenge… or answers right ? must be this way in the cave i had all set up for you 🙂

    Reply

  5. Trying to create characters who want to stick with the group is all good and well, but it's also important to set expectations before character creation so that you dont end up with a repulsive group that no reasonable character should want to stick with. If everyone buys into playing a group of assholes, murder hoboes, or general store employees then that's fine. The problem is when there is a missallignment.

    Reply

  6. I'm currently running a hoomebrew game and prefaced my players; If you can make a convincing/working back story we can see what we can do about a PC if it's possible.
    One of my players has taken that to the extreme making 3, homebrewed and entirely unique, characters that would be an interesting sight to see one day (They are backups for current possible PC death at any moment) while another player tried to do the same only… Not at all.
    This player wanted to be a succubus, I had prefaced him to an extreme point that to make a succubus adventurer is going to be a heck of a sell and he'd better come up with a hell of a backstory. Well… He did and he didn't. See, he knew about the basic idea of succubus but doesn't know the whole ordeal of serving a master unless breaking in from the hells themseleves as freelance soul collectors but that wasn't even the issue, I cleared up the difficulties for him to aid him but that was never really the issue. The issue was what he wanted this succubus for and how it "ended up" as an "adventurer".
    This player wanted to play a succubus so they'd be a gorgeous, alluring, attractive woman so that they may be a lady of night. A prostitute. Yes. At the end of each of his backstories the player would round it up with "And She's a prosititue." Which ruins the whole idea of her being an adventurer if she's just after sleeping with yet another person to claim yet another soul.
    Now, in an evil campaign, perhaps this could've worked, but even then he never managed to get past this one desire of his as I clearly stated to him that if she's a prostitute, why is she even out adventuring? If She's a succubus She will be the most succesful prostitute in the land to which he came up with the ever so brilliant (but not really) idea that she was found out to eating her clients soul forcing her to travel around new places to begin prostitution once more. Which is still a f***ing prosititue, not an adventurer. I shot his idea down and he was heartbroken saying he really wanted his prostitute succubus to which I had to state to him, clear as day, that this is DND not a smut simulator.

    Reply

  7. these types of players r idiots. It would be like me joining the army then saying "no, I dont want to use a gun as I'm a pacifist"

    mayb they thought they were playing Dungeons and Shops

    Reply

  8. I think you've done stuff on the reluctent hero before, I think this falls under the same, and the Player and DM need to figure out how to get the PC out and going.

    Reply

  9. hay love this topic, tho, i have been that player, who " wants to be the black smith," but only in so far as wanting the DM to have a Infighting Isodent, that way i can go from " i just want to be a blacksmith," to " that mage Murderd every one in our village, He will pay for what he has done! come Friend, lets get some revenge" witch is real cool to have that kind of insighting insodent in the campaign and not in a back story, but if you do that it best to check with your DM before hand, and make sure your all on the same page, and he is willing to do that seen with you. but yes i concur it can be annoying and make the game boring if you have a party member who do not want to adventure.

    Reply

  10. In Adventure League my group had a player who wanted to run a pacifist cleric. So pacifist that the cleric would  NOT heal any pc who attacked the monster. He demanded we allow it. We did allow  it once and told him, no more. He got tick off. And complained on the Official Adventure League facebook page. The Admin told him was being a bad player and needed to play well with others.  A few months later he quit playing AL in the store. ***I also had a player way back in 2E who tired not adventuring. His ride, his snuggle bunny, and half the table told him that he was being a pill. But hey, I did get a good short story about the adventurer who never left the tavern.

    Reply

  11. tl;dr: Sometimes it is bad DMing or a mismanagement of expectations instead of the player's fault. Sit down and talk calmly.

    You're coming at this from a experienced, decent DM's point of view. If you're a player and your party doesn't want to grab on any of the DM's hooks then they aren't good hooks or are shown badly. Most players I've DM'd for are willing to go do things (adventure) even if only one party member has a quest. Most of the time, they are an adventuring band and they want to enjoy a good story when they sit down at a table. This sounds like different expectations happening and people need to sit down and talk.

    Now let's go other side of a story. You get invited to join a game from some coworkers. The DM starts off with the usual, save the world from certain destruction hooks. While playing, all the NPCs are mean to the party, puzzles only have one specific solution, clues where to find a mcguffin or to move the story forward are vague/confusing, combat is repeatedly messed up with near TPKs while epic NPCs come and save the day while showing they're much better than the party. Session three, the players are bored. Nothing they do seems to make sense, the story has fallen apart, the loot/reward is barely there, while NPCs are either super jerks or epic level super jerks so why bother. Bob is on his phone on Reddit for most of the session and Erin has decided that the project she has due at the end of the week is a better use of her brainpower.

    Then they enter a large town but the general store has insanely high prices. We are talking way above what pittance the party has been getting for funds. Bob, looks up from his phone and, being the business major he is asks, "Why are these prices so high?" DM gives a random response and Bob thinks that there's a market here. He looks at the other bored, half-paying attention face of his fellow players and says, "We should open up a shop to contest this one. We could use what little money we have to pull it off, maybe do a favor to the local lord to cover fees for setup costs and I bet we could build up a fortune." You players look at him and their start getting excited. They start making plans about where in town to do it. They gather info from NPCs, who are still jerks but George the Rogue got a NAT 20 on Investigation. Then the plan begins. The party setups their shop, they send the Bob the Bard to deal with negotiations and if that fails, the NPCs get a visit from Erin the Fighter and George to "persuade" things to go their way.

    The players are now reinvested in their game. If the NPCs are going to fight the players, stop them from saving the world (what little there is) or can save it themselves (epic level heroes) then the players will do something that they find more fun. Heck there are RPGHorrorStories filled with such tales. People who kept together through bad DMing due to the rest of the party being fun to hang out with. They decided since the railroad sucked, choices didn't matter, loot might as well be nonexistent and the story made less sense than the beta version of Tyranny of Dragons then they'll do their own thing. With Blackjack.

    Sometimes it is on the player with your blacksmith example. That character works best as a NPC, sure, and you should talk to the player more about it but never forget Slaphappy Jack. Heck in my I'm a player game I'm someone who wants to setup a travelling circus. There are easier ways to do that than by adventuring but he needed a way to raise money and nobles annoyed him. It is simple and allows him to pull on threads if the DM has ones I like or retire whenever I get bored. We're on a quest to deal with some evil shenanigans not because he wants to stop the end of the world but because one of his party is on the quest and the party sticks together. Next up is getting adamantine for another players armor. Not every character wants/needs to be on the adventure. If they're making it harder or are wanting to go back to town, let them and they can leave the table. However, this rant comes from the perspective of an experienced DM and sometimes, it is just bad DMing and there's nothing wrong if the players want to engage in your world by running a simple general store instead.

    "Sometimes the book you write isn't the one they want to read. It isn't a bad book and they're not bad readers." M. Colville

    Reply

  12. When the PCs want to settle down give them just enough time to feel comfortable then have trouble come knocking on their door.

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  13. I wish my players would run an inn. I could then bring all the
    adventures to them. You don't have to be traipsing around the wilderness
    for adventure. A general store could provide tons and tons of adventure
    and plot if you have a creative DM! So much could be
    created with this scenario. Sorry DM Lair, i don't agree with this rant
    and i don't think this this is good information for new players &
    DM's like your other excellent stuff is. I think this is something you
    don't like, and this whole rant should be an IMO. Running a store in
    today's world is involved and this should reflect back in the campaign.
    Taxes, red tape, licenses, employees, theft, city council, audits,
    mayors, thieves guilds (shudder), law enforcement, competition, merchant
    guilds, supply chains, stock delivery's etc. Oh my, so many adventure
    possibility's being wasted by not allowing your PC's to run a business.
    I've been DM'n since Elves were a class and i have only ever been graced
    with this type of player once. Yes, initially like you i was like
    WTF!!??. But i went with it. It turned out to be one of the best
    campaigns i had the pleasure to DM.
    Keep up the good work.

    Reply

  14. If all you want do is run an inn just be the DM yourself. You will be running inns bathhouses blacksmiths and even have to deal with unruly customers causing havoc

    Reply

  15. Counter Point:
    If the group actually wants to run an adventure within the city, bring the campaign to the group. I know this doesn't work if you are running a published campaign but look at any crime drama for inspiration. Bandits showing up to the blacksmith (for "free" weapons of course). The Inn is going to be strong armed into "protection" by the local thieves guild. Customers going missing. Ghosts haunting the premises. BBEG terrorizing the town/city. Noxious fumes coming from down in the sewers making the town uninhabitable. Anything that can go wrong, does go wrong, in this town/city.

    Where are the guards? Who knows. Maybe they have been paid off because the bandits and local gangs are paying better than the town coffers. Maybe they have been trying to weed out this corruption but they are just outnumbered.

    Now maybe it is like you said Luke, and only one player wants to run such a campaign. Time to find a new player or him find a new character. But if you can get table "buy-in" for running such a campaign, you can just bring all the "bad guys" to the city.

    Reply

  16. Happily I have never had a problem like this. At most Ive had PCs who wanted to adventure in different directions. Though funnily enough. Last time a player tried that, I told him to make a new PC… He turned up with a noble paladin of redemption, who was always first into the fray. Extra points because he rolls terribly, which we describe as his hatred of violence.

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  17. My group is running a few different characters on the same continent at the moment.

    Set A is off on the other side of the country looking for a group of missing merchants in the underground – while Set B is back in the city running the tavern. The Tavern still gets action though because Set A just teleported them a LARGE Spider Queen that they then had to get back to the part of the city that they had the tavern in. And then fell in with the local rebellion through hijinks .

    Set A for when they are feeling Punchy and murdery, Set B for political intrigue and Mass Suggestioning the city guards into handing out the rebellions fliers and spreading seditious materials.

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  18. I always thought the concept of an adventurer as presented in D&D was pretty dumb. Always seemed a bit contrived to me.

    Which may be part of why I always preferred homebrewing games other than D&D, now that I think about it.

    Reply

  19. If they want to stay in town working, threaten the town with bad guys. Steal stuff from their shop, steal supplies from incoming caravans etc etc.

    They can't be a craftsman if there's no supplies to craft with. That motivates them to get off their ass (because they can't do anything else) and go figure out what's wrong. Then you just keep them moving.

    Reply

  20. If the character or party wants to "just" run a store or tavern then there can still be adventures to be had. Guarding the caravans. Obtaining new stock. Finding a cache of ancient wines. Negotiating with dwarven craftsmen to expand the building…by doing a favor for them. Protecting the store from monsters. Eliminating the competition, literally. Not paying the protection racket to the thieves guild. Taking a side in the local politics when the king wants to close down all taverns. Stuff like that.

    Oh and a barbarian who wants to be a chef. Gotta get the good ingredients…like dragon meat! Hunting time!

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  21. If I were that DM, I would have either:
    1) Make there be consiquences: I.e. if Wilma dosn't deal with the raders, those raders target her shop too, because it seemingly weak and undefended, and the guards are too buissy, or are refusing to help; forcing her to do it herself.
    Or:
    2) Take the hint that the players want to do some other thing than what I intended, shift gears, and roll with it; prepairing the next session for whatever they decided they want to do.
    Or:
    3) The same thing you did. Ask them to roll a new character who would fit into the group better, and kick them if they won't.
    The old character could become an npc shop-keep, if they like.
    I wouldn't really expect them to change their old character's attitutude thoguh, unless that player offered to do it that way on their own.

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  22. I know it would be railroading but as the DM their General Store would have been totally burned down due to arson.
    Ps. Luke you're going to have to be really old if you've been DMing since before I was born as I am 56 yrs old LOL Also I've been playing D&D since 1978.
    Thank you for all the advice & keep up the great work.

    Reply

  23. I like it when my players start to focus on micromanaging something trivial. The players not onely feel like they own the shopp itselfe, but trie to control the employes aswell. Now they start to get atached with these low value cardboard cutt out NPC's. Take these NPC's and turn them into plothocks themselfes (abductions/tragic backstorrys/blackmailing/false acusations) there ar sooo many whays how you can manipulate these throwawhays and force the players into action.

    And if they still don't bite cosequences hitt the throwawhays and afect the party's success, trashing the business they were so focused on. Now they want to know what hapened for shoor.

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  24. These rants are good because I feel it's a frustration a lot of DM's run into. You want to run a game that the players want to play, but if they're not playing and looking for an excuse to stay in town, tell them to go play farmville and they can have all the warmth of non-adventure all they want. I keep asking my players for feedback on what they're liking or not liking, what they'd be intrigued to see and then twist it all in my own design. I'm currently stuck though so I'm just gonna keep listening to these rants and hope to find some ideas.

    Reply

  25. Got a barbarian that wants to knit and sell their wares?

    I think of Kratos raging as he tries to get a stitch down right.

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  26. I didn't take up on it but while I was talking with a dm about am idea I had for a pc. Part of it was him crafting his own ale. My dm just threw out a number for the materials to make the ale. Trying to base it off real world numbers. Long story short by his numbers the math came out to it would have cost my character 1cp to make like 50 gallons of ale. I jokingly told him actually I am just gonna retire now super weathly from making ale for like 5000% profit.

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  27. Have been watching your videos for some time, and… For once, I completely disagree.

    As a "forever DM" for ~20 years now, I never used a single official scenario and always relayed on draft stories set in an open world. Majority of the time I fill the storyline on the run, from which most is based on the consequences of players actions. I accept non-adventurous PCs, because finding a motivation for them to move theirs butts is a nice challenge. As a warhammer 1ed veteran, I kinda got used to the fact that PCs dont start as the heroes, but rather rat hunters, merchants or already mentioned blacksmiths.

    Wanna move blacksmith out of the workshop? Instead of burning it to the ground by some random raiding orc party, give him an apprentice that steals the secret crafting recipe.

    Players are managing an inn and don't think about adventuring? Rival inn sets itself up to compete and in the end – to bankrupt players establishment.

    BBEG aint always a dragon or a lich. Sometimes it's just a rival, a guild, or anything else (at least on the first glance, who knows how it will develop down the road). Everything can be made interesting, but only if the DM isn't selfish enough to just say "screw you guys, im going home. That derailed my campaign". If said inn or workshop is the PCs focus, meddling with it might set players on a whole new motivation. And, if it's really such an issue, BBEG can slowly work his way to achieving the goal, undisturbed by the heroes.

    Also, most important thing for me – I never get angry for "wasting" prepared plothooks, locations, riddles or encounters. Why? Because wasting them is never an option – just hold on to them to simply reuse later on, just altered a bit.

    Sorry for my english, it aint my native language.

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  28. Awesome video! I do have a quick Dm question that im stumped on. A player of mine is playing a ranger, now she is enjoying the adventure so far she just feels like her characters lacks. She doesnt feel like her character does much in battle except heal, then get downed and not get healed in return. That type of thing. What should i do to make her feel more in the spotlight or appreciated?

    Reply

  29. Hey, Luke. Could you please make a video on running horror in D&D and maybe even tips for running horror campaigns?

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  30. If you are the only one who won't take the bait then bye you decided you didn't care enough to join the party.

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  31. My first character in 5E (two sessions so far) is adventuring to gain money, fame, connections, and guild membership that will allow him to retire to smithing. So he is an adventurer, with a retirement plan.

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  32. Regarding the general store players, that is fine, IF and ONLY IF all of the players AND the DM agree that is the type of game they want to play.

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  33. "Wilma" was created some player's girlfriend who doesn't want to play D&D, so she intentionally creates a character who makes the game less fun for everybody else.

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  34. I guess it could be fun, but you always need the entire group to genuinely agree that's the campaign. The second session of any TTRPG I ever played was a homebrewed system by my older brother, even though he would abandon it afterwards. It was the only time our sister would be in on me and my brothers' experimental RPG sessions.
    While one dragon like character was fighting mercenary fish creatures as his strange alien cohort almost betrayed him only to show he'd never do that to people who so poorly explained why the alien should join them, their elf-like associate ate pizza and watched. Later, alien hired the elf to come along with them, only to not do a single thing that would impact the story. The elf was played by our sister.
    I don't know why she joined us. We were here to test out our older brother's system and she never rolled the dice even once. He even bought lunch for her to play the game and she refused to actually play.

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  35. I've long considered a magic-item crafter. Sure he's got a business and needs to check back on it once in a while to make sure his staff is doing their job. But at least in his case he NEEDS to go out and adventure to collect the components for his items. And he can always fiddle around with his latest project during long rests and/or when he's on watch. But he just can't focus as well in those cases, and the items are… less than stellar, but functional. lol

    Oh, and free curse-removals for anything purchased in his shop, as sort of a guarantee of quality, and for the times he "didn't quite get that right"…
    He'll also un-curse items not found in his shop, for a "nominal fee" of course (more expensive than temples and such, but never ask questions). lol

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  36. The players who make characters who don't adventure baffle me.

    As the DM, I usually make sure the adventure finds them in the form of just advancing the villain's plan so that it interferes with their livelyhoods. If they're still resistant, that's when I ask them to make characters that would confront the threat.

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  37. Yeah, there's at least one Japanese RPG that you can play a "slice of life" style game… Go find a translation if you can find the title… I just can't recall off hand. I know I've seen it in a couple of the "Top X RPG's you haven't heard of" kinds of videos in the last half year or so.
    You can manufacture a decent RPG out of Gurps (of course) if that's your thing, and invite friends over for a "settling down" kind of antics game or whatever… BUT you're still not playing D&D.

    I don't know how Steve Jackson would feel about it in Gurps, to be honest, either…

    Frankly, when I don't feel like Playing D&D, and sometimes I just don't… I have at least another game I can go-to for whatever it is I DO feel like playing. There are LOTS of games out there.

    AND yes… I've had to deal with the "homebody stick in the mud"… Most of the time, it's a bit of misunderstanding or an over-played "reluctant adventurer", like Bilbo Baggins in the original Hobbit… constantly thinking back (on advice from one of the dwarves) to better times when he gets remarkably uncomfortable (which was most of the adventure)… AND/OR Samwise who only wanted to be back in the shire, but kept up with Frodo, even carrying him some of the way to Mount Doom… etc.. out of necessity…
    On those "misunderstanding" situation, it's a matter of coaching just a little. "No, I don't mean stop being the reluctant adventurer. Now that I get what you're going for, try… just dialing it back a bit. That's all. Bitch and whine, but step up… because your guy knows it's the only way to actually LIVE to get home."

    Then there's the few times it was a full blown pain in the ass… AND I just shrugged those Players off. "Look, I don't know what the hell you thought you were signing on for… AND yes, there really isn't anything you technically can't do… BUT this is an adventuring party going on an adventure in this game. Sorry, but that's the way it is, and you might be better suited to play bridge or backgammon. We're all here to rampage all over the countryside fighting and murdering evil and protecting good… that's our bunch and how we roll."

    The "But that's what my Character would do"… ugh… Hate the excuse. BUT as pointed out in the vid'… "Then make another Character or adjust this one to be an adventurer."

    It's not that I won't do two games at once. I simply can't do two games at once. Everyone has enough trouble keeping their schedules just free enough to get together for this one game. I barely have enough time and energy to keep the clattering staggering shit-show that's our Campaign Arc together enough to be coherent. I don't have the resources to keep up with that AND the one dumb shit who wanders off alone. He/She/It is probably just going to die… Sorry, but it's a rough world out there. ;o)

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  38. You have made a grave mistake.

    You mentioned a cat and did not show the cat.

    You have until the end of your next video to show the cat.

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  39. honestly a pc wanting to be blacksmith could work as an artificer that goes on adventure to gather rarer materials

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  40. If a player decided to play the reluctant hero type, it falls on them, often in coordination with the DM, to think of reasons why their character would go an an adventure anyways.

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  41. I actually did make a character who flat out said "What? No! I'm no adventurer!" But I also made sure he was easily sucked in and 'went with it' until he WAS an adventure.

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  42. one thing that i did for players that just wanted to "take a break" (be lazy) was to make them/the business they owned a "home base" for the players that wanted to kill stuff and loot ancient cities, so 3 players would adventure and 1-2 would run the operations (maintenance, cleaning, contract negotiation, etc)

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  43. I want to do something similar but still productive. Using the Spheres of Power system I'd make a bard that expresses their magical buffs to the party through exotic coffees that they make. Literally a magical barista. And as an attack I'd just throw the boiling water on enemies.

    There are ways to do these types of characters and still actually play the game, anyone who ends up doing like Wilma probably just doesn't actually want to play d&d to begin with.

    Although, if the group as a whole actually like the sound of such a game, then I'm sure a competent DM can make a campaign for the simple townspeople. After all, dragons don't care if you are a blacksmith…

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  44. I’ve shared this story before on another channel, but I once ran a game which had a pair of twins among the players. These guys had characters who just wanted to be tourists and literally ignore everything adventure related, they just want to wander everywhere. After four sessions of me and the other players putting up with their shit I asked them to change their behaviour and they called me a piss-ass idiot for not being able to keep up with player decisions. I then asked the other players if they feel like the twins’ actions represented their feelings and after being told that their actions was not in fact fun for everyone else (surprise) they flew into a temper tantrum that culminated in them breaking my window (they hurled a binder through it). I ordered them to pay for the damage and leave my house and one of them punched me as a response so I called the cops on them. After sorting through the mess, the other players and I decided to break up the group since it left such a crappy aftertaste.

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  45. When I have unadventurous PCs I give them the Luke Skywalker treatment: burn their house and livelyhood down, kill their aunt and uncle and leave them alone with nothing but the party for comfort.

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  46. uh excuse me, that's a +3 hide apron. base 15 defense before dex modifiers. no one's putting barbarian on the chopping block

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  47. Confession Time (with Rant)

    Okay, I've BEEN that player once or twice. Basically, I kept creating characters who didn't do well with inter-party conflict. Their moral compass was such that when other party members forced an ethics issues – surrender the treasure or the hostage dies – it broke my PC's motivation to keep traveling with the other PC's

    Now, the wise thing to do would be to roll up a new character closer to party alignment. However, I didn't want to give up on all the work I put into them – the half elf bard who just wants her elven parent's approval, or that gnoll paladin who struggles with cultural pressures. Crafting and downtime actives let me pretend to keep playing.

    How did I break the cycle? Well, if you can't guess, my RL ethical alignment didn't match the PLAYER group's either. It was exhausting trying to be a 'nice' Lawful Good in a room of Chaotic Neutrals. Retiring and rolling up new characters for the sake of a smooth game was exhausting. When the group hit the scheduling 'death spiral', I didn't work too hard to get the band back.

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  48. It can be sometimes DM fault too, if the adventure nets less that just being at home and smithing or even puts you in a loss, there is no point in adventuring. Or going into clear suicide missions, like every sane adventurer would not go too far into Tomb of horrors.

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  49. Dm>> a few months later a lich with his gaint army of undead show up. This wss the bbeg u were suppose to stop. He's now come to add u to his army

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  50. The Legendary spatula of magical sauce and flavor, the divine smithing hammer touched by glittergold himself, the lost crochet hooks of the Fates… Motivation to Adventure can be fun to create the hooks on the spot, it doesn't have to spin the entire campaign into an Acquisitions-Incorporated style campaign but I definitely like to throw curve balls to such a player character that tries this bunt…
    See how they would deal with a horrible theif, a hostile competitor and legal entanglements attached to merchandise. Become too good of a chef at your opening restaurant might and it might merit a personal summons to prepare a banquet for the king… Everyone needs startup money especially if ledgers and levies got to get paid within deadlines. I've DMed on and off for only two decades and these are just a few motivational tools iv created, hope they are helpful.

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  51. If you want to play a character that's not a traditional adventurer, give them (and the DM) a reason to adventure.
    -Luke Skywalker tried to avoid the call to adventure, but then Stormtroopers killed his family and burned his moisture farm. If he were a D&D character, is player would have told the DM "Luke talks big, but doesn't want to go on adventures because he has duties… if you slaughter his family, he'll go on the adventure.
    -I had a wizard that hated adventurers and anything to do with it. He also read common too fast and would sometimes read the wrong word (he was the wizard on scholarship, the poor kid from the docks that got a full ride to wizard college, so most words he has only read, and never heard). He also had a fiance that he wanted to get a gift for, and his mother gave him two Adventurines to sell to buy a ring for her. They may only be worth 5 gp a piece, but that Adventurines Wanted: 500 gold sign seemed almost too good to be true… after the punchline at the end of the adventure ('okay, we rescued the goblins from the blacksmith's daughter, can I sell you these stupid gems now?), by then too late, he's in the group (and his need for money makes him keep going, though he grumbles and hates it).

    Make the character you want, but give them a reason to play the game.

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  52. I actually have an idea about a farmer who spends some of his nights fighting in the ring when he goes to the inn, in order to get money to get the medicine to help out his sick animals and, more importantly, his sick child. Basically, his motivation, to go on an adventure, would be purely for the money, so that he can see to it that his kid is healthy, at least initially, with him sending like half of the money he gets for a job homewards. Afterwards, maybe he finds out that his village is in danger from the BBEG, meaning that he'd be willing to fight for his home, or something like that.

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  53. I once made a town guard PC with a loving family who wait for them at their humble farm. Sounds like a big doo doo already, yes? Well, thankfully, it actually worked. Why you may ask? Because the game's premise was that a werewolf attack happened and the town was left in shambles. My character's parents lived through the onslaught but from then on things only snowballed and what was once a town guard became an adventurer, not because they wanted to, but because they had to. They were given responsabilities which they did not run away from and they were always given support by friends and fate to follow the path of adventure. Sometimes a bit of railroad can fix characters with allergies to adventure. But I admit, pulling this off in an open world sandbox game would have been way, way more difficult, even if not impossible. Even my character had aspirations of becoming a hero, even if that was a sideline dream rather than a major objective. Now someone dead centered on making horseshoes… Huhhhhh…

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  54. I couldn't agree with you more, players that don't want to play and adventurer are the worst followed a close second by the "I am a lone wolf edge lord player" and last but not least the "I don't go into towns Naturalist Player"!

    I keep seeing these ridiculous posts were the players are using DnD as a Dating Sim FFS. WTF? or spending 3-5 sessions speaking with the folk at the Inn, I am all for RP but nothing drives me nuts more then when the PC's want to talk to a random nobody for the whole damn session, meanwhile I am bored silly waiting for them to finally actually talk to the important NPC's that actually have valuable info to move the story forward.

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  55. My little niece's name is Wilma and she always answers questions with the most immediate and curt responses. I asked her if she wanted some of the food I was making and she looked up from what she was drawing and just said a flat, monotone "No."

    And I just picture that player being my niece, lol. "Wilma, don't you want to go save that village?", "No.", continues making nails, "But what about treasure and finding dungeons?", "No." :/

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  56. I had a character who died and was resurrected decades later (not my choice). He did not want to adventure anymore and just wanted to work on a ship. He was depressed from being yanked out of a genuinely good afterlife. So guess what I did. I made a new character and retired the old one. Wanna play a game about adventurers? Play an adventurer, this is coming from a player and a DM.

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  57. Sounds like a DM as much as a PC problem. There are games that have a lot of downtime as well as adventures, and the balance between the two should be discussed before a campaign. And even in games more adventure focussed, it can still be done right. For example, a cook who’s main goal is to find the perfect ingredients for their signature soup, or an artificer who wants to find unique materials, they could be travelling with the adventurers because it’s safer, or they want to help them, or owe them something, maybe revenge. There’s ways to tie in characters other than just “make a new character.”

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  58. I had a game once where we were starting as level 3 characters, my brother(who has played D&D for over 10 years and been a DM for over 4) decided he wanted to play a weaker character "as a challenge", so he rolled stats by rolling 3D6 for each stat and kept all the dice(no re-rolling 1s etc.), he rolled up six stat blocks like this and took the lowest stat total as his stat block. That's how we ended up with a dragonborn fighter who specialized in ranged combat, only ever threw daggers and had a Dex of 13(his highest stat) who didn't use any fighter abilities until after our first 5 combat encounters, physically stopped the rogue from checking a door for traps because "I'm going to check for traps", and ended up souring the entire session for us all by making everything about himself. A flying sword that binds itself to whoever defeats it in single combat, he spent the entire fight with the mummy trying to defeat it so he could take it for himself, despite refusing to fight in melee combat. The materials and oddities my character managed to gather after various combat encounters without the help of said useless fighter, must be shared with the whole party no ifs, ands, or buts. It was the worst experience I've ever had with D&D, so bad the entire group has refused to play with him ever again.

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  59. I know this can be done to an extreme like what is described in the video. But making a character with a motivation outside of risking their lives killing monsters isn't a bad thing. It is actually a much much more realistic thing. No one really wants to be a Witcher or risk their life all the time. Combat is dangerous after all.

    I have a character that is a forge cleric and is using a weapon and armor upgrade supplement. He does not want to run around risking his life, but rather figure out how to become a better smith. He wants to see if it is possible for a mortal to craft a weapon fit for a God. He is an adventurer more because he needs to get exprience from what is armor and weapons need to do in order to be perfect. For him to own and run a smith isn't a bad thing. I only need to make sure that his ideas of just staying in the smith all day doesn't take over the campaign. Downtime is important in my opinion.

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  60. This might just be me, but deflecting from general store to adventures is still possible by making the plot hooks matter. Have the locals request materials, rarer items or exotic stuff. Have their shipments get waylaid as the villains goes unopposed – and they have the choice of becoming an irrelevent bust merchant if they do nothing, or go on adventures from time to time to keep their store afloat or better.

    Sidenote, I actually don't mind my players splitting the party away from one unified group. There are story choices and tactical benefits to be had by increasing the risk.

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  61. This triggers me everytime — I'm 48 yo, I also played in my early teens, which is even more of a feat, because it was the 80s, during the campaign against role playing games, and in Spain, Europe. [yes, in a different language than my own] So the next time you say "before you were born" I will probably stop watching your channel 🙂

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  62. Okay, running a general store that Hawks items you looted from adventures sounds like an absolute blast of a game or story arc.

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  63. I prefer to shift the issue of adventuring to the player when I hear a "It's what my character would do?"

    "Okay, so your character would like to just hone her trade as a blacksmith. What do you think could motivate your character to go on this adventure that I spent 3 hours of my own time away from this table preparing?"

    Then If they don't come up with an answer, it's their failure that makes me force them to make a new character.

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  64. Just want to ask, as this happens sometimes in some campaigns I partake in, how do you feel about the party being split into 2 smaller groups for whatever reason?

    edit: They split up into these smaller groups for whatever reason but they still carry on dnd'ing and adventuring

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  65. PCs running a general store? That sounds like a great excuse for general store related quests! "Your shipment of X is a week late. What will you do?" "No-one is coming to your store any more. Bob's store (secretly backed by an antagonist) has suspiciously low prices." And if the PCs don't bite those adventure hooks? They go out of business. [But the overall point is valid. Adventurers should be motivated to adventure!]

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  66. A DM blaming his players for not wanting to take his hooks is a lot like Kathleen Kennedy blaming the fanbase for not liking Disney Star Wars.

    Seriously, you know the guy values his blacksmith shop and you can't leverage that? Maybe you have no business being a dungeon master.

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  67. Oh, you only want to "insert hum-drum activity here"? Me in my head, oh ok, well next session your going to find that whatever your character holds dear is going to be put at risk from some kind of threat that is going to require some intervention from you.

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  68. I noticed a lot of projection to this hypothetical reddit post. When I think "campaign about running a general store", i think of the idea that even when they go adventuring, the adventures revolve around the general store. Their orders keep getting intercepted by bandits, so as the most capable adventurers around, or at least the most capable with a vested interest, have to go deal with it. Intrigue from espionage from rival buisnesses trying to interfere with their success. You can have lots of fun with a game revolving entirely around the players doing some non-adventuring activity.

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  69. I Think it is ok if you have agreed upon it.

    Like I was in a campaign focused around us being a group owning a tavern. It was actually quite fun, since the DM was really into it. Like we where dealing with troublesome customers, went to ensure Trade agreements, Got involved in local politics/events and went to sabotage a competitor. It was very low combat and Heavy roleplay, but this was made clear pre-game.

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  70. Dear group, this is an investigation campaign and you're playing fantasy cops. You've known this since before session 0. Please stop making edgelords who don't care about the law.
    Love, your DM.

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  71. Our Paladin had a little bit of this issue at first. He is a town boy, always has been, he took care of the cows and liked that life. But his goodest choosed him to be a hero so he was presured by everyone to do it. He is a pacifist at heart and always tries to choose the most pacifist route. Still he has never been an obstacle to the party, we go into adventures and sometimes him trying to choose the most pacifist approach means an extra layer of challenge (him wanting to save some monkeys brought us against the dragon who had claimed their mountain for exemple)

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  72. I'm currently making a PC that doesn't want to be an adventure, but his goal is to just return home…so he's gonna have to go on one. He's a prisoner of war and I want my DM to use my Homeland (that am a Earl of, it's my province) as a hook to go on an adventure to protect it.

    I just wanted to make someone who isn't a hero atm…been running back heroes or villians so this is my current take on it. I even promised my DM if this doesn't work out I'll make a new character that's wanting to save the world.

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  73. I was commenting while watching….I ran a pacifists barbarian….he did not kill. He tried not to be mad (due to his curse when he got emotional he ran the risk of turning into a fiend) and whenever his family (which was his party!) fought stuff my barbar would try talk things out or just grapple and pin the enemies leaving the party to kill.

    It took 2 years IRL for my DM to break my barbars peaceful ways when he attacked the parties mother who has adopted us all) and I finally got to use my rage features to the fullest…I enjoyed RPing this, mostly because it was me trying not to be a hero, just be a sibling that enjoyed bonding with his family. The moment the DM killed our mother tho ..I got to be a murder hobo for one session outta 100s that I was not lol.

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  74. 2008: My wizard has every spell in the game, a handful of cheezy magic items and a couple artifacts. BBEG is not gonna last 3 rounds.

    2020: Actually my wizard's low int score does not allow him to cast past 1st level spells, and his ptsd makes him want to avoid stressful situations like combat. He has to care for his sister who's in a wheelchair though, so he runs a potion shop.

    Sure, buddy… that's called an npc :p

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  75. This is why I can't DM a certain edition. As you mentioned the game is about the adventures and teamwork not individual voice acting- "roleplaying".

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  76. I've had this happen once. We had a long discussion as the player's idea was since elven styled goods were rare in the campaign that he'd stay behind here and there and sell elven styled weapons and metal trinkets. I had a few rules

    1. They could only do this once every 3 sessions

    2. They would not get any XP

    3. Their sales would depend on the area, rolls, and their charisma score.

    4. All sales were to contribute towards the party as a whole.

    5. They'd get 10 minutes of my time once every two hours for rolls and an idea of their progression while everyone took bathroom and smoke breaks or went to the store by my place.

    It worked out well enough and everyone felt it was fair. He eventually stopped but. Did amass a good bit of wealth for the party and became an expert blacksmith and merchant if elven goods. He got a small boon once per day seeing the actual value of goods and a permanent + 3 to rolls when it came to bartering and crafting items using metal.

    In all eh it wasn't the worst thing but was a bit bothersome trying to make everyone happy while still trying to get my story done. I don't recommend this style of play to new DMs and old DMs may find it to be straight up insulting.

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