NEWS

My player is too fast! What can I do?

  • 16 Replies
  • 618 Views

marfish

  • *
  • Newb
  • *
  • Posts: 38
« on: (21:05:01/07-18-19) »
So the scene is that I have basically set up a large playground, the exit is about 1.5km away, the player need to fight (smartly), and overcome some social scenes in order to leave without a scretch. However, one of my PC is TOO fast! He can run about 320m/turn (it's legal), so he can run off in about 15s, and leave all other player behind. I am very hard to picture how would my NPCs react. I was counting on this scene to let some of the quite player to shine, so I can't just let him leave.
Any ideas?

(I don't mind using some good hr to hot fix the speed bug.)

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

  • *
  • Errata Team
  • Ace Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 2141
« Reply #1 on: (21:10:16/07-18-19) »
Just because you can run 320 meters/turn it doesn't mean you can go from 320 to 0 in one turn. Look out for closed doors!

 Or take a corner without flying into a wall.  Get creative with how much DV he suffers for trying to make a 90 degree turn at high speed.
« Last Edit: (21:19:07/07-18-19) by Stainless Steel Devil Rat »
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

FastJack

  • *
  • Administrator
  • Prime Runner
  • *****
  • Posts: 5796
  • Kids these days...
    • Coming soon!
« Reply #2 on: (21:21:13/07-18-19) »
Or let him run off, and tell the player "Okay, we'll get to you after we finish this scene with the others." See how long it takes for him to run back.

Kiirnodel

  • *
  • Catalyst Demo Team
  • Ace Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 1466
« Reply #3 on: (21:24:13/07-18-19) »
Personally, I would reassess the sources of the speed increases and decide if they can really all be used together. I would guess based on a speed that high that there might be some shenanigans going on. It might be legal on paper, but it could definitely be unreasonable, logically speaking.

dezmont

  • *
  • Chummer
  • **
  • Posts: 103
« Reply #4 on: (22:29:52/07-18-19) »
This is pretty standard samurai stuff...

Well not the 320, that is clearly way too high unless they are abusing the movement spirit power. A movement focused samurai can generally hit around 30 meters per second (AKA 60 a turn) if they REALLY push into that, otherwise 10 isn't uncommon.

But othewise, yeah. Samurai are insane and are superhuman. It is kinda what they do. While technically the intercept action works against them most sams have good gymnastics. It is supremely difficult to threaten a samurai personally because they are so jacked. They are bullet proof, can kill most armed and armored combatants casually unarmed even if they don't train in unarmed, dodge bullets, climb a story in 3 seconds, ect. You will almost never be able to physically lock down a samurai to kill them unless you do something really unfun to just 'turn off' them being a samurai, which is sorta like tossing fire immune enemies at a Solarian in Pathfinder who can only do fire damage, AKA you are being a jerk to just blanket shut it down. The samurai can personally win almost any physical challenge where they are, and you shouldn't try to nullify that without a very good reason, telegraphed so hard that you literally are comfortable saying on an OOC level "your powers wont work in this situation because X, which your PC knows for sure" and only in a super limited context because boy howdy is it not fun to roll up a character meant to be an awesome cyborg ninja and then be told you will constantly be brought down to everyone else's level. But that is fine, and it doesn't mean physical danger is pointless in teams with a Street samurai!

However, the real trick is that... the samurai is only PERSONALLY immune to physical challenges. The fun aspect of playing a borderline invulerable superhero is your team very much isn't. A big part of why samurai are fun is that unlike every other archetype they cant do anything to help remotely, which is a big deal in a game where the party is frequently split! So basically the 'interesting' parts of being a street sam is kicking ALL the ass, but then also babysitting your 2-4 squishy meatbag friends who die to mid sized rifle rounds like plebs and running around covering them as they constantly try to do their jobs.

So if that samurai just shouts "Zoomies!" and runs off their team is totally vulnerable, and those people still need to get out. If they just bail on their team, they kinda are a bad samurai, as the samurai's main job is to physically babysit everyone and ensure no one dies. On an OOC level, you should just do what FastJack says, but also mention they are failing in their role, because the fact the Samurai is able to ignore this danger doesn't mean they suddenly can cut and run on their team, and their team is justified in booting them in the same way they would be justified in cutting a Mage who decided to stop counterspelling and supporting the team with spirits mid run to just bail.

Of course, that is an IC 'solution' to an OOC problem, which is bad. So don't actually let the player do that. Just impress on them that such an action is essentially 'failing' as the team's protector.

Michael Chandra

  • *
  • Catalyst Demo Team
  • Prime Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 8249
  • Question-slicing ninja
« Reply #5 on: (02:19:32/07-19-19) »
(Under a strict reading Movement can only be applied inside a Spirit's domain and I allowed it under specific circumstances and specific houserule restrictions. Should have nerfed it further though.)


In this case you want to consider the complications of accel/decel and reading ability.
CorpSec when an alarm is triggered;: "This is so sad, Alexa play Shoot The Runner"

Sphinx

  • *
  • Errata Team
  • Omae
  • ***
  • Posts: 685
« Reply #6 on: (09:32:42/07-19-19) »
Administer a few object lessons. E.g., dangle a target in the distance, wait for Flash Sammy to dart off after it, then spring an ambush on the teammates he left behind.

(You do know that movement rates are for the entire combat turn, right? Not each initiative pass?)

marfish

  • *
  • Newb
  • *
  • Posts: 38
« Reply #7 on: (00:52:35/07-21-19) »
Thank you all! Some pretty useful tips!

Btw, the agi is 10, *4 (running), *2 (skimmer), *4(movement), total 320m/turn.

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

  • *
  • Errata Team
  • Ace Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 2141
« Reply #8 on: (00:55:44/07-21-19) »
Thank you all! Some pretty useful tips!

Btw, the agi is 10, *4 (running), *2 (skimmer), *4(movement), total 320m/turn.

Heh, yeah it's REALLY hard to take a turn in a corridor at high speed if your feet aren't even in direct contact with the ground. 320mpt is in excess of 200MPH. Someone ought to be becoming chunky salsa dripping down a wall.   Lol, going 320 meters per turn indoors is putting yourself into "Rocks fall, you die" territory.  No need to even allow a soak roll.
« Last Edit: (01:19:52/07-21-19) by Stainless Steel Devil Rat »
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

dezmont

  • *
  • Chummer
  • **
  • Posts: 103
« Reply #9 on: (01:38:45/07-21-19) »

Heh, yeah it's REALLY hard to take a turn in a corridor at high speed if your feet aren't even in direct contact with the ground. 320mpt is in excess of 200MPH. Someone ought to be becoming chunky salsa dripping down a wall.   Lol, going 320 meters per turn indoors is putting yourself into "Rocks fall, you die" territory.  No need to even allow a soak roll.

Killing players for combining rules in a totally above the board way that isn't even a little big sketchy ("I use the things that make me move fast to... move fast?") is a good way to not get invited to GM again.

Like the most you should ever escalate frustration with a player's actions is to just talk it out with them like a grown up. Killing players by arbitrarily deciding that your superhuman powers and literal gosh darn magical spells now suddenly have an arbitrary level of realism applied is sorta immature and frustrating, because the player has no way of reading your mind for what you think is reasonable.

Mechanics and rules exist to give players a sense of agency in the choices they make and feel like things are consistent and fair. Don't pull the rug out of them or you get conservative gunshy players who aren't very fun to play with because they are conditioned to be afraid of you arbitrarily feeling like you have the right to nuke them from orbit for 'taking advantage.'

Golden rule stuff: Do unto others. You wouldn't want a GM to declare your PC dead or to threaten to kill your PC because you combined mechanics that seemed reasonable to you and are designed to be combined. Even if you could be convinced its not good for this to happen you would (I assume) prefer people to talk to you about their concerns and needs like an adult rather than taking out their frustration with you by essentially smashing your sheet out of your hand and ripping it up. Killing a PC because you don't like what the player is doing is... essentially never a good choice, because it is abusing your position as a neutral arbitrator and storyteller of the game world to push other people around because it feels good to have that level of power over other people.

Thank you all! Some pretty useful tips!

Btw, the agi is 10, *4 (running), *2 (skimmer), *4(movement), total 320m/turn.

The movement power on spirits is extremely overtuned and it will always result in PCs moving so fast they essentially teleport. It is generally recommended to nerf the power so that it merely adds to your final meters of movement in some way. A common houserule is that it the target's agility by force for the purposes of movement, rather than multiplying final movement by force, which in this case would get a much more reasonable (though still fantastically fast! Samurai with skimmers are MEANT to go really fast) 112 meters every 3 seconds, or roughly 87 miles per hour rather than the 237 miles per hour you get with movement.

In general, resist the urge to apply lethal consequences to other players in order to disincentivize an unrelated player's actions. For example, the people the samurai are leaving behind have no choice in his actions, and so while narrative they obviously are facing consequences for it, you don't actually want the PLAYERS to feel like they got hit for what the Samurai did. This creates a really terrible meta-game where now they are justified in tightly controlling what other players are allowed to do because if someone else does something they can be affected by actions they didn't support. It always leads to a bad time and hurt feelings.

Your players should generally trust you to, even if you frame something as a consequence of someone's actions, never feel like that they are going to be 'splashed' by someone else acting in a manner they don't support. This allows different playstyles to flourish in your group, and more importantly a huge part of many players anxieties is that they feel like the gaming environment is not safe, either to explore or even to exist in because they need to guard against danger to the character they are inhabbiting. A huge part of your job is to understand and manage your player's individual limits and psychologies and not ever push anyone to the point the game is no longer fun, and an easy way to do this is to create adversarial and controlling relationships with players.

If the person just bails. Figure out why. Often times when someone does something like that it is because they are just too excited to use some power of their character and didn't actually think long term about the ramifications. In those cases, a simple 'hey remember that leaves everyone in the dust, you wouldn't want to abandon your friends right?' is going to do it. But maybe they feel like their speed has been underutilized in the game (The classic "rogue pickpocketing" problem, where D&D rogues want to be classy cool thieves but the GM never gives them a chance to use those skills, so they satisfy that aspect of their PC by picking the only people's pockets they have access too: Their friend's) and maybe you should go out of your way to make scenarios where going REALLY REALLY fast is much more useful. It could also be an aspect of that player's motivation: Different people play RPGs for different reasons (Ex: Some like strategy, some like acting, others like the ability to be in a world that is 'safe' from consiquences and where they can take risks they never would in real life knowing that the GM is there to catch them!) and one of the common 'types' is irresponsibility. Like people sometimes like the fact that RPGs are a world where nothing REALLy matters and they can do things purely because they want to rather than because it is useful.

If the player has chances to use their speed, and knows that they are letting their team down, but does it anyway because they can, they may be that type of player. In that scenario, it may be realistic for there to be backblast on them, but you have to understand that A: Escapism is one of the primary drivers of RPG players and is super heckin valid, and B: They probably won't care at best and get really frustrated your 'ruining the fun' at worst. In addition to avoiding splash, you probably shouldn't sweat too much any consiquences at all regarding an irresponsible player unless they are ones they would actively enjoy because it lets them flip the bird to convention and authority. Yes, its realistic for sometimes what they do to result in a bad thing, but you should care way more about your group collectively having fun that simulating a reality, which frankly almost no player actually cares about. If there is an understanding that Frank the Freaky speedster's antics won't really blow up in anyone's face as long as he doesn't steal spotlight time from other players, its all good and people will just let him have his own fun and enjoy the messes he gets into and out of! Sorta the Deadpool of your little gang, in a sense: The X-men should be mega pissed at all the stuff he pulls but it doesn't really help the story or the dynamic of the characters for anyone to get too hung up on it so people just give him an unrealistic amount of leeway.

The other possibility, and this is the worst case scenario, is that it is player dysfunction. Something else is going on you didn't notice, maybe people are tense with each other, frustrated, maybe someone stepped on Frank the Freaky speedster's groove a few too many times, or he feels repressed, or another player stole his sandwich from the fridge or whatever. And so he is bailing on the scene as an act of protest. In this scenario, you need to double down on not being a creepy control freak and recognizing its very likely a real human being's feelings are hurt or something is wrong and that maybe using the medium of your arbitration over a fictional universe to punish them for feeling bad or frustrated about something isn't going to work and in fact will make the problem SO MUCH WORSE. Here is where you need to like... use your adult social skills to figure out the problem and not make the player feel like you are attacking them for ruining the game, without also condoning their behavior.

Of course, the player could just be a jerk going out of his way to troll the team, on a level beyond looking to be irresponsible and impulsive (which can inadvertantly lead to players not enjoying what they do, but it is, again, valid behavior to go full Devil May Cry and flip the bird to villains in an RPG because RPGs are group storytelling and that is a valid type of story, and it comes down to spotlight sharing in the end rather than players doing that activity ever) and actively trying to get kicks out of making other players anxious or not enjoy their actions. In that case, again, go to the OOC level, and just boot em out. You don't, again, use your arbitration of a fictional world to attack people doing things you don't like, you just adult up and handle the actual real world problem, in this case someone is just being a jerk cuz they think it is funny.
« Last Edit: (02:00:41/07-21-19) by dezmont »

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

  • *
  • Errata Team
  • Ace Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 2141
« Reply #10 on: (01:48:26/07-21-19) »
Just to be clear, you ARE complaining about 6WE not having sufficient realism, yes? But you're ok with scooting around at 200mph indoors when you have absolutely no traction whatsoever and NOT auto-dying in 5e?

I get you, don't punish players for doing what the rules allow.  By all means inform the player that if you want to move like a race car, I'm going to treat you like a race car.  Yes, that means if you even attempt a 90 turn at 200 miles an hour you automatically hurtle out of control into the next vertical surface you encounter.  Demonstrably, you lack all the contact with the ground that a racing car enjoys and still would flip out under such circumstances. So maybe you don't want to even attempt it.

Also:
Skimmers are so funny.  You know what cyberbois with skimmer feet have in common with ED-209s?  They're foiled by stairwells.

Edit:
So what am I suggesting: the OP is literally asking how to handle a PC that's too fast. Tell the player that "x" is the maximum speed the character can move this turn due to the corners he must take and the foot traffic he must avoid or the stairwell he'll hit.  Or whatever combination of these or other factors.  Say if you want to exceed that speed, you'll hit something.  If the player inists, "No I'm going 200mph and screw you!" then his PC dies.  No fuss.  If the player insists on going somewhere between X and 200mph, then my suggestion is figure the raw speed and model it on falling damage.  You "only" want to go 100mph? Ok, that's the speed you'd be at if you smacked into the ground from a height of 95 meters.. so when you hit something you'll be soaking 95DV with an AP of -4. Good luck.  Give him a Gymnastics+Agility test to maybe NOT hit something, or leap up a straight stairwell, or so on, if you feel generous.  Check out the success test thresholds chart on pg 45 for guidelines of how hard that test should be.  90 degree turn at 100mph? Yeah, I'd call that "extreme" and peg it at a threshold of 9 or 10.  But maybe you're nicer than me. It's your game :)

Edit, Mk II:
Also, since cyberskimmers are a factor here... that probably means cyberlegs?  Do remind the player that despite what Herolab and Chummer may say, cyberlimbs do not provide any bonus (augmented or otherwise) to attributes, and the Physical Limit does not factor in Cyberlimbs' Strength stats*.  If he dumped strength and relies on tricked out cyberlimbs, that'll make it even less plausible he can ninja around corners and up stairwells.

*fun bit of arcane 5e rules trivia: If you play the German language version of 5e, there IS an optional rule to figure Physical limit that incorporates cyberlimbs' strength, but you have to have 4 cyberlimbs.  And of course, be using the German language CRB :D
« Last Edit: (02:29:27/07-21-19) by Stainless Steel Devil Rat »
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

dezmont

  • *
  • Chummer
  • **
  • Posts: 103
« Reply #11 on: (02:03:34/07-21-19) »
Just to be clear, you ARE complaining about 6WE not having sufficient realism, yes? But you're ok with scooting around at 200mph indoors when you have absolutely no traction whatsoever and NOT auto-dying in 5e?

I get you, don't punish players for doing what the rules allow.  By all means inform the player that if you want to move like a race car, I'm going to treat you like a race car.  Yes, that means if you even attempt a 90 turn at 200 miles an hour you automatically hurtle out of control into the next vertical surface you encounter.  Demonstrably, you lack all the contact with the ground that a racing car enjoys and still would flip out under such circumstances. So maybe you don't want to even attempt it.

I actually don't care super much about realism more than the fact that 6e kinda seems like it dumpsters on samurai. Realism is such a whatever argument that mostly is used to justify petty behavior like the 'truly immovable rod' meme where the GM kills a player because they think being overly literal is funny.

Either way, the literal main job of a GM is to be neutral and impartial and fair, rather than being a jerk who applies rules arbitrarily to suit their whims in order to reward and punish behaviors they see fit.

If you don't like the ramifications of going super fast in 6e, don't handle that problem by saying 'lol you die' or 'lol I ruined your PC's intended fantasy retroactively.' Just houserule the movement power like an adult and tell people ahead of time. Killing your players for crossing lines you imagine is officially 'yikes' tier and is how you get blacklisted among gaming groups as a GM.

Like, yes, its unrealistically fast. You can also do things like lift a HMG in SR with cyberarms and the limb averaging rules despite only having 4 strength. You gunna tell your player the second they try their spine snaps and legs break because despite being 100% able to do this you feel its more 'realistic' that their lifting capacity doesn't reflect their meat body spine's capabilities? How about telling the player that it isn't 'realistic' that their sword swing against a moving vehicle doesn't shatter their entire body even though they didn't get hit by it?

This realism argument is a transparent smokescreen to just kinda poke and prod at players who are utilizing mechanics in good faith that lead to outcomes you don't like, and universalizing your own assumptions about how the game works. If you applied this logic universally, SR wouldn't work as a game. Selectively applying rules on a whim in a manner to 'punish' the players is literally the worst thing a GM can do, it is a total violating of the role's fairness

And, frankly, is a bit creepy.

Creating imaginary rules and lines and creating super intense disproportionate consequences for crossing those lines and them blaming the person you are acting aggressively towards for triggering your aggression is super classic anti-social behavior. Like I work as an individual aid for kids and as an after school teacher and that is a super huge red flag. You wouldn't accept that behavior in any other context, don't accept it in RPGs, and don't DO it in RPGs. I can't stress enough that no matter how much you rationalized it no one is consenting to this sorta behavior outside the context of Paranoia, which literally is a game lampooning how toxic this vision of the RPG dynamic is.

Also:
Skimmers are so funny.  You know what cyberbois with skimmer feet have in common with ED-209s?  They're foiled by stairwells.

This is quite true, and a totally reasonable ramification of the rules, however I suspect most people with skimmers have double digit gymnastics scores and it wouldn't be inappropriate for them to just hop the stairs.

It is almost like we are talking about superhuman cyborg terminators who see reality in slow motion and who have agility scores so high they are twice as good as what we can envision a human even being capable of.
« Last Edit: (02:18:12/07-21-19) by dezmont »

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

  • *
  • Errata Team
  • Ace Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 2141
« Reply #12 on: (02:48:27/07-21-19) »
Since I slipped you dez with some edits, just wanted to point out that I agree with you about how a GM shouldn't be doing "rocks fall, you die".  Gymnastics+Agility to not slam into a wall and suffer that ridiculous DV is totally a legit fair thing to offer, if the player insists on taking stupid risks.

I brought up "yeah, he just dies" as a way to address zooming around at 200mph indoors as being something equally as silly as the D&D player saying "I stab my forehead with a dagger to intimidate these NPCs with how tough I am.  It only does 1-4 hit points of damage, and I have over 200 hit points! I'll be fine!"  Yeah, that might be one way to read what the rules say, but the GM tells the player how the rules bend and when they break, not the other way around.
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

dezmont

  • *
  • Chummer
  • **
  • Posts: 103
« Reply #13 on: (02:53:31/07-21-19) »
Since I slipped you dez with some edits, just wanted to point out that I agree with you about how a GM shouldn't be doing "rocks fall, you die".  Gymnastics+Agility to not slam into a wall and suffer that ridiculous DV is totally a legit fair thing to offer, if the player insists on taking stupid risks.

I brought up "yeah, he just dies" as a way to address zooming around at 200mph indoors as being something as silly as the D&D player saying "I stab my forehead with a dagger to intimidate these NPCs with how tough I am.  It only does 1-4 hit points of damage, and I have over 200 hit points! I'll be fine!"  Yeah, that might be one way to read what the rules say, but the GM tells the player how the rules bend and when they break, not the other way around.

Cool! I wish I could err on the side of assuming you are not creepy, but I see too many good GMs falling for that trap and too many players getting burnt, and in that scenario where someone accidently taking glib advice a biiiiiit too literally could seriously hurt feelings that is the priority over assuming the best of people. Obviously if you work things out ahead of time (Including maybe offering refunds on items) and get them to affirmatively agree to stuff, all is kosher!

Most GMs would agree that is way too fast to really handle, which is why I haven't seen a table where Movement sees use AND isn't houseruled. Most Gms houserule that stuff the second it hits the table because it makes you so absurdly fast.

Like it isn't even that this PC is particularly fast, it is almost exclusively the movement making them go ZOOMIES, and while some Gms talk about air resistance and the like... it is just literally magic accelerating your speed and realism sorta doesn't apply, and even if you were to say 'you handle poorly' it... kinda is dumb you can ram people with a car going at escape velocity as a missile, which is great fun exactly once, and then it instantly gets old.
« Last Edit: (02:55:06/07-21-19) by dezmont »

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

  • *
  • Errata Team
  • Ace Runner
  • ***
  • Posts: 2141
« Reply #14 on: (02:59:15/07-21-19) »
I typically run Missions, so I'm not allowed to house rule.  I deal with the b0rk3n movement buffs via the method I suggested: acknowledge that yes you can go that fast (potentially supersonic, if you add in critter movement power)... when you're on the bonneville salt flats.  Or perhaps running laps at the Indianapolis Speedway.

But you're indoors? I'm giving you this cap.  That's all you get.  You waste too much of that "movement" accelerating, decelerating, and focusing on not slamming into things to go any further than X meters this round.

And X is ostensibly based on the terrain factors, but let's be real.  There's a large amount of arbitrary decision making in there too in order to keep the game flowing rather than get bogged down into quibbling over numbers.  Missions have a timeline to stick to, too.
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.