Wednesday, January 22, 2014

D&D Campfire Stories: 11 Foot Pole

The following story comes from my good friend and first DM, Matt Jenkins. You can read about this story as well as many other things at his blog HERE.

"So back in my earlier days of gaming, I ran into this problem as a DM:

Me: As you walk down the second hallway of this dungeon, the Ranger spots the 
        outline of a trap on the floor, it is likely a trapdoor.
Player 1: Describe it to me, I look at it fairly closely. BUT I make sure that I don’t fall
Me: It stretches from wall to wall across the width of the hallway. It extends for about
       10 feet down the length of the hallway. When you take a look under the painted
       canvas that was covering it, you find that it’s a pit filled with slime. Above the
       hole is a metal ‘eye’ bolt set into the ceiling.
Player 3: Come on ‘Player 1′ and ‘Player 2′ we have to go back to town to get
               some supplies.
Player 2 (who is now confused): What do you mean? We have rope and a grapple!
Player 3: Nah, we need an 11 foot pole, I only have a 10 footer. If an 11 footer
               touches the bottom we know it’s 10 foot, not 15 feet. I know that this
               dungeon was laid out in 5 by 5 foot squares.
Player 1: We could just lower the grapple and rope in, and measure how deep it is!
Player 3: Nope, it might be acid under a thin coat of slime that floats on the acid! 
               That way, when we swim across we’ll get burned to death! If we lower the
               rope and grapple in, it’ll melt. Seriously, I want an 11 foot pole. The DM has
               it in for me.

After a little more arguing, the characters head back into town, passing some woodland on the way. I spend a minute or two describing the trip, and how lovely and straight the maple trees are. During the rest of the ‘journey’ back into town, Player 3 continues to rant about how he will outsmart me, the DM, with an 11 foot pole. Once the party is in town, they split up and Player 3 goes off in search of a merchant to buy this 11 foot pole from, with the rest of the characters are waiting for him at the bar.
From what I recall, Players 1 and 2 had a great time at the bar and role played with the local folk. They found out the history of the Dungeon/Cave complex. Player 3 would up spending most of the session looking for his 11 foot pole that he’d out smart me with.


There is a lesson to be learned here."

1 comment:

  1. I have found its is often quite weird what players will FIXATE on...thus ignoring the long straight small trees