Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What kind of Dungeon Master are you?

So have you ever been told in the past that you’re a hard DM? Have you ever been told that when you DM you’re a soft-touch or don’t lay down the law enough? Never heard either of these critiques? Well here’s a little quiz you can take to find out just where you fall on the DM scale. Write down your answers for the calculator at the end and please do your best to answer honestly. After all, lying to yourself is the first step towards total insanity.  

Q1 -  When making a character a player comes to you and asks if they can re-roll their ability scores after rolling really poorly the first time. What do you do?

A)     I say no. The rules are the rules.
B)      I say yes. I want a happy player.
C)      I say no but give them one or two extra points in key abilities.
D)     I say yes but make them keep a couple of low scores.

Q2 – When making a character a player comes to you and asks if they can create their own original weapon/armor/item. What do you do?

A)     I say no. If it’s not in the book, I don’t want it in my game.
B)      I say yes. I want a happy player.
C)      I say no but allow them to modify something in game that’s similar.
D)     I say yes but keep them on a very short leash.

Q3 – You discover on the first session of a campaign that one of your players has legally min/maxed their character to be very over-powered. What do you do?

A)     I mulligan the character and tell them to start over.
B)      I let them run with it.
C)      I tell them to make a new character but give them some bonuses for the trouble.
D)     I let them keep the character but tweak a few things.

Q4 – After a few sessions you notice that one of your players is cheating on their rolls. What do you do?

A)     I immediately ask them to leave the game. No place for cheaters at my table.
B)      I ignore it. Why rock the boat?
C)      I announce it to the whole group and let them deal with it.
D)     I pass the player a note telling them to stop.

Q5 – After a few sessions you notice that one of your players seems to dislike the campaign. What do you do?

A)     I ignore it. If they got a problem, they can leave.
B)      I stop the campaign until I find out what they want me to change.
C)      I keep going but I have a chat with them about what they dislike and try to make little changes.
D)     I keep going but I try to make a few changes that I think will help.

Q6 – One of your players is constantly arguing with you about the rules. What do you do?

A)     I tell them to stop or I’ll kick them out of the game.
B)      I keep trying to show them the errors of their ways.
C)      I ask them to tone it down a bit.
D)     I patiently listen, but make my own decisions since it’s my game.

Q7- One of your players is often rude or insulting to another player. What do you do?

A)     I ask them to leave the game. No time for that at my table.
B)      I smile and go along with it.
C)      I bring it up in front of the group and ask them to cut it out.
D)     I bring it up in private and ask them to cut it out.

Q8- During a must-win fight you notice that your players are losing badly. What do you do?

A)     If they can’t hack it, they die.
B)      I immediately drop all of the foes to 1 hit point.
C)      I ease up after one or two PCs go down.
D)     I bring in an NPC to help turn the tide.

Q9- You notice that one of your players has been deliberately sucking up to you. What do you do?

A)     I tell them to stop. I don’t play favorites.
B)      I compliment them on their fine work and throw them a few extras in game.
C)      I politely tell them that flattery will get them nowhere.
D)     I tell them to cut it out but I give them something extra anyhow.  

Q10- Near the end of a campaign one of your players decides to stab the rest of the party in the back causing a crisis. What do you do?

A)     I do nothing. It is what it is.
B)      I step in with the wrath of god and make everything better.
C)      I let it happen but I make a few changes to fix things after the fact.
D)     I step in and prevent the crisis from going too far.

Alright, now it’s time to see how tough you really are.
Add up your answers using the following method:

All “A” answers = +2 points
All “B” answers = -2 points
All “C” answers = +1 point
All “D” answers = -1 point

This will give you a total between +20 and -20. Please total up your score and see the chart below for your result!

Between +16 and +20
THE DRAGON
When it comes to being a DM you are a stone. The rules are the rules and compromise is a dirty word. If your players don’t like how you do things, they can go elsewhere as far as you are concerned.
Between +6 and +15
THE MAGISTRATE
You are a bit more tough than fair. You like to uphold the rules most of the time but will concede on a few points when you feel it is necessary. Your players have confidence that you will run a straight game.
Between +5 and -5
THE DIPLOMAT
You are moderate in almost all of your decisions. You believe in the rules but you also feel like they can be bent and occasionally broken. Your players respect your ability to compromise and keep the game going.
Between -6 and -15
THE INN KEEPER
The will of your players influence you greatly. You view the rules as no more than guidelines to keep the game organized. Your players have fun but can sometimes run rampant.
Between -16 and -20
THE JESTER
You feel that the game exists for everyone to have fun and conflict is overrated. The rules mean nothing compared to the needs of your players. Your players love you as a DM but they may find your games a bit unruly.


6 comments:

  1. 0 The Diplomat for me...

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  2. Really needed a 5th choice on many of those.. . .

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  3. As did I. A lot of quizzes like these will give five options, with one of them always being worth zero points.

    Btw, -1 Diplomat, here.

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  4. 1. E - I run point-buy effect-based systems. forced to run D&D, B - mulligans are in the book and more powerful heroes means I can throw more interesting things at them

    2. E - I run point-buy effect-based systems. forced to run D&D. C

    3. E - I run oversight on characters before running. in case I failed to notice. B - and I throw stuff at his mins as much as provide stuff to show off his maxes. If he's made a weakness, he is obviously telling me he wants that weakness to appear in the game to give him trouble.

    4. D - speak to them about it politely.

    5. C - don't interrupt other people's fun but deal with it as soon as possible.

    6. D - remind them that the rules in the book are merely suggestions

    7. D followed by A

    8. E - I encourage them to Concede the fight so they can control exactly how they lose. If forced to run D&D C

    9. C - do not send mixed messages, but do not publicly humiliate.

    10. E - this was part of the plan. Otherwise D.

    Hmm, The Diplomat.

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  5. Tough quiz, as there were several questions where my answer was "None of the above."

    1. When ... a player ... asks if they can re-roll their ability scores...? My players don't roll their abilities. They select whatever they want, and they don't play the min/max game.

    3. You discover ... that one of your players has min/maxed...? (This is a player problem, not a GM one. See above)

    Questions 4, 6, 7, 9 and 10 are also all player issues. Talk to the players outside of the game, tell them what you expect.

    - - -

    It really comes down to establishing a social contract before starting a campaign: tell the players the kind of game you are running, what they can expect of you, and what you expect of them. This way, there's no surprises. If someone breaks the social contract, you ask them, between sessions, to stick to the group agreement or leave. Simple as that.





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  6. we wouldn't have re-rolls with a point buy.
    players would not be able to cheat - we make our dice rolls on the table in front of everybody
    issues about rules, players not liking a game, being rude, etc would likely be discussed one-on-one out of game first.
    As a DM, I usually have a plan for the group if things start going really badly in a combat - an escape route, an NPC ally, or whatnot. It doesn't always work, and I don't do that for every big combat. Plus, it's hard to pull your punches all the time if you make the rolls on the table - the hill giant rolling two 20s in a row against the ranger with only 3 hit points left.

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