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Ever get those players who whine about life being too harsh.

Ive had it happen twice now and am beginning to wonder if I follow the rules to rigidly, if it cuts into their enjoyment of the session.

In a standard firefight the TNs can easily get to 7+s or 10s or even higher if I take my time. The problem is I dont know if its me being to realistic or me having gotten the players used to being "uber" from other games or just me having whiny players.

Frankly its bugging me enough to wanting to drop the campaign, only problem I have is that no one will pick up where I left off heh wink.gif

Any suggestions?
Carry on? be tough
Make it easier on them?

I dont wanna loose players since my core group is 3 guys strong...dont wanna cut someone out
*peers closely*

Dim Sum, is that you in disguise? biggrin.gif
Nope...dun know the me, never posted here before, only found the boards cpl o weeks ago
Truthfully, some players may not care for realism and prefer instead the "Jon Woo" school of combatives.

I think you have to hit a happy balance with your players -- as it stands, it sounds like they want a lighter, less-mechanic heavy game.

just make sure you let them know what their TN modifiers are for. if they still whine about having high TNs then tell them to stop trying to pull off crazy shots, get vision mods for their cyber eyes or goggles, avoid bad conditions that add modifiers, etc. tell them to play smarter and their TNs will more than likely lower, if they still keep whining tell them you don't care and ignore them.
if they still keep whining tell them you don't care and ignore them.

That's a smart way to ensure that you don't lose your players.
Hi BewilderedGM,

Welcome. That was a joke by the way. Dim Sum's my GM, and the uncanny coincidence of having three whiny players in the group (myself included) was too good to pass up.

Well, let's just put it this way. Dim Sum's games are lethal (as a recent event in our game amply demonstrated) and TN's in his game climb can sky high. Heck, it's not like we make it easy for his guys either. The TN's for his NPC goons are usually as you've described, 7-10's.

I think that's pretty much the norm for combat. I love Dim Sum's games because, for all the lethality and difficulty, it's still rip-roaring fun.
Don't forget that the game is supposed to be fun for everyone involved : ) Establish if they're whining because they're just trying to get something better (I'm guilty of that one sometimes...) or if they're really unhappy with something. If the majority of your players aren't enjoying the game, try making the TNs a little lower (for your players and for the NPCs, muahaha). You don't need to stick rigidly by the rules and really if your players aren't having fun, they'll eventualyl find something else to do with their time. There are other things you can do too. If it's only a few players especially, help them lower the TNs. Help them minimax a bit so they can knock a few points off that TN. Explain that yes, their TNs are high, but so are the bad guys'. It's actually in their advantage that it's tough for the 10 guys they're facing down to not be able to hit them either and tell them to use that. Or give them ideas on how they can get around difficult combat (with bombs or what not).

Making any aspect of the game too much of a challenge for your players is a good way to garauntee they'll avoid that aspect. If it's something as major as combat, you may have a problem.
Thanks for the rapid replys all.

Im not being and idiot here and laying the blame solely on my players, in the end we all have to make this fun and Im the one with the biggest part of that fun.

In the end Im gonna hafta be the on who bends over. I just dont deal with failure very well and failing on keeping a group together will really PISS me off. Already Imcatering to greedy karma needy players (I dish out standard karma x150%) Im rantin...sorry heh nyahnyah.gif

Anyways, Ill keep on going while they still show up for sessions grinbig.gif
Shinobi Killfist
well combat modifiers I have trouble feeling sorry for players about, becuae there failry straight forward and usually apply to the foes as well. The only time I understand TN whining is when the DM throws out 6+TN for everything. "I'm going to the stuffer shack to pick up some grub" Ok give me a bike test TN8, oh only 1 success well you whipe out on the freway. And unfortunately no this isn't a joke. I played in one campaign for well over 6 months(the example of above is from it) on a weekly basis where nobody could start with a skill over 5, and only one skill could be that high where there wan't 1 test ever below 6. We didn't whine, roll our eyes maybe, but hey in cases like this whining would be justified.

IMHO, there isn't such a thing as a player who *isn't* greedy for karma. dead.gif
BewilderedGM, you might also remind them that if you go easy on them with the TNs you'll have to do the same with the NPCs. Things like that are a two way street. Especially in combat where most of the TN modifiers seem to come from general environmental conditions and such.

If that doesn't make them think twice, then you might want to give them what they want for a few games and see how it works out. Remember, the GMs job isn't to play against the character's, but with them...mostly. smile.gif
There are a few great ways to get to the root of the problem. Getting one of the PCs to run a session is a good one (what he runs is often what he wants to play). Another suggestion is to throw in a heavy reward run to let everyone gain a bit of extra karma and cash so that they can be a bit better prepared to meet the challenge.

Are the players new to Shadowrun? If they are, do the PCs seem dissatisfied with their characters? It may be good for them to make new characters (carrying over karma and some cash, to make things fair) or redesign their old ones now that they know how the rules work a bit better.

Here's a question, do you roll behind a dice screen or not? If you do, a lot of the whining might go away if the PCs see that the NPCs are bound by the rules just as much as they are.
If the TN problems are their own fault, you should kindly remind them what they're doing wrong, what equipment they can get to fix it, or what they can do to make it so they can play the way they like next time. If they have a problem with shooting two guns at once, you can't really fix that without a good bit of gear, but kindly telling them about the ambidexterous edge the next time around would be a nice gesture. If they have recoil problems, suggest gyro mounts for that huge minigun, etc. etc.

If you can figure out what's going wrong, chances are you can help correct it and make things more fun for everyone.
With a new crew, what I've had done to me is starting core book only, and then once the core rules were learned by all, open up the rest of the books and allow a recreate using that and the karma you earned from all the games, as well as the money.

You'd be amazed how much simpler it is to do advanced rulings after they know all the basics.

The idea of showing them how many dice are being rolled against them is good too. Let them see the TN of the NPCs just to show that you're being fair.
Bewildered, being GM is a difficult and underappreciated job. The only time your players are going to properly thank you for doing it is when they've taken a whack at it. It's a tough learning curve, and even after a year of GMing, I still have a lot of problems. You're going to have problems, but they're only failures if you don't learn from them.

As a fellow GM who supports getting more SR players and GMs out in the wild, I thank you : ) Keep up the good work.
I was going to say something, but everyone pretty much has it covered.


Make sure your players like what your playing. If the issue turns out to be just not having the right gear and not know the rules, fine. But if the team wants to pull off crazy Matrix-esque stuff, have them rebuild their characters with that in mind.

And make sure you give everyone a chance to shine at least once a session. Even if it means cheating for the players. It is incredable for player morale. (Just don't let the player know you cheated)_
players can be finiky. Your to harsh they go away, to soft, they go away.

gotta find the in between. maybe take it a little easy on them till they want it to be a little harder, gradually make it harder.

or just slap them with the book and say "Look, I dont read this thing for my health!!!"

"you read it an GM ya whiney little explitive!!" biggrin.gif
well with my players I used to say

"if your unhappy with me adding up every modifier I can use another system, I grab a number that seems roughly appropriate, and thats the TN."

One game of "pick a tn" with most groups tends to work at getting them to shut up, when someone says, "tn of 12, no way" you say, "well if i took the time to add up the modifiers it might be lower, but you didnt like that system"

usually w/ my players they just go " oh....... thats high, i dont do that."

there a good lot most of the time and they learn to fear me quickly. biggrin.gif
Once the players understand the issues behind the TN penalties, they'll modify their decisions accordingly.

For most situations, the TNs are pretty standard in the 4 to 10 range (from easy to pretty tough). But, you make one roll and you're done. Either you succeed or fail.

For combat, the TNs typically fall into the 6-15 range, if you're adding all the modifiers. But, you don't just make one roll. You make dozens. You fire at the goon, TN 10, and get one success. He dodges. He fires back, TN 11, and gets one success. You dodge. On and on and on. Combat takes forever to resolve, because nobody can ever hit anything. So for combat in particular, I tend to prefer to gloss over a lot of the modifiers, just to get the TNs into a low enough range that combat will start to resolve itself faster. We tend to ignore the mods for thermo and low light vision, for example (if you have it, you can see - if you don't, you can't), and for both target and firer movement. It also helps that pretty much everybody (both PC and NPC) uses a weapon and firing mode with which they have full recoil comp. These things tend to get our TNs back into the 2-8 range and make combat flow much more smoothly. Less time on calculating TNs, and less time on rolling futile attempts to kill things.
It's easy to deal with them.
Let them work out the target numbers themselves.

Say "OK, you're running, you are switching to your second target and you are firing a shotgun on auto with no recoil compensation. Here's the chart. What's the TN?"
If that doesn't shut them up, tell them, right then and there, that some one else has to GM. And you want to play a physical adept with killing hands and distance strike.
GMs are valuble, and most groups will be happy to strangle one of their own to keep one. If not, they don't like your style, say OK, and move on. Let someone else GM. Don't suck up and do crap you don't like to "keep the group together". It ends up with you coming and bitching to your friends while he's out drinking with his buddies and sleeping around. Oh wait, that's something else. Wait, no it's not, it's the same thing. If you knuckle under or suck up to keep things together, all you keep together is a situation where you knuckle under or suck up.
K...thanks for all the support, this is a really active board biggrin.gif

Im gonna try this thing with one of them running a session or 2 to let em know how it "feels", besides I really wanna play instead of GMing sometimes hehe.

Yes I do use a screen, but its mostly to keep people from dying on freak dicerolls or to keep em from calculating on how much combat pool dice to roll on dodging that last shot.
ie. the bad guys rolls his x dice at TN 10 and only gets one success, let the player see that and hes only gonna use like 2 or 3 dice of his combat pool to dodge. Using a screen I can keep em in suspense and just say "well he hits ya"

Anyway thanks again guys
QUOTE (BewilderedGM)
the bad guys rolls his x dice at TN 10 and only gets one success, let the player see that and hes only gonna use like 2 or 3 dice of his combat pool to dodge. Using a screen I can keep em in suspense and just say "well he hits ya"

You know, I have to admit ... as a player, I really like being able to know how well I've been hit.

It's fair: Unless you're randomly choosing how much combat pool (or using it all, or something preset like that) to use when your goons are shot at, I feel I ought to be able to know whether it's wise to use 2, 3, or seven dice on my dodge roll. I don't want to use too few, because being hit SUCKS, and yet I don't want to waste a bunch (4 dodge successes from six dice vs a 1-success attack SUCKS!), since I'd like to use those for the retaliation strike. And while I would love to know whether it's 2 or 3 successes I have to beat, even "one, a few, lots" would be better than no intel at all.

Which is what I'd be doing as a GM anyways -- I'd want my goons making combat-informed decisions (Dodge a little, dodge a lot, don't dodge at all if they don't get any successes, etc).

I hope this doesn't open a new can of worms, but it's just my two cents on the subject. You don't even have to show them all the time, and just tell them. (maybe for a dramatic success of "oh he jsut blew your head CLEAN OFF, you might want to use some karma pool too ...", or a dramatic botch - "whoa, eleven 1's ... I guess his roomsweeper explodes in his pants as he tries to quickdraw it, blowing his ass into the Tir ... ")
You see, then people are doing combat solely for calculation. They see them use so many CP, so they know their TN to dodge and only use that many CP. It just isn't fair to do that.

You run it that way, that's your perogative. I sure won't let my players know how many successes they need until they've already thrown in the CP they want to use.
Just out of curiosity, how is it "not fair"?

Edit: Assuming, of course, that you would do the same thing for your goons.
Well it works both ways when we do this, I hide my successes and they hide theirs, I trust them in this matter.

But me representing the toons who are gunning for them I get blamed for cheating or being "lucky" :o/

I usually set aside a certain amount for certain things. This much, per turn, to dodging/soaking and this much, per turn, to attacking. A lot of times, if there's still some left in one pool and I have the last action, I'll just drop it in for good measure. Other than that, it'll stay in the certain split pools.
So you are making a calculation based on OOC knowledge that you have the last turn. ohplease.gif

I disagree with hiding information If there aren't quite good descriptions. IRL in heads up situations, people know how well their attacker is aiming, how much they need to try to dodge, and, to a large extent, how well they have been hit.

If you are looking down the barrel of a gun, you probably know if it is going to hit you as well or better than the weilder. If someone is throwing a punch, you have some idea of the likelyhood of it landing from visual cues of the situation.

Instead of having to give in depth descriptions of the result of your dice roll, why not just let the roll be seen? Because I doubt the description is going to be that good.

As the GM, you have all the advantages any way. Even if the player sees how many combat pool dice were rolled, how do they know how many remain? Maybe they have massive Quickness, Intelligence and Willpower, along with sustaining foci for increase attribute on each. They could have cyber or bioware that increase those attributes. They could have combat sense spell or adept ability or both! Etcetera.
I hide the dice from my players unless there is a great need to show them what is going on.

But they have to show me their rolls.

Why do I do it this way? Storytelling, baby. If the players stink, it's important. After all, they are the actors. However, if I don't want the players to die at that particular juncture, they don't.
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