Thursday, October 29, 2015

GMing Technique: Minor Problems for Any Game System

The Minor Problem Technique is basically the GM thinking up of problems that the player overcomes without having to roll, but with having to make trade offs or detailing what he happens to be doing.

Minor Problems were featured in my post about Non-Binary Consequences.

Example:
you have 1d6 minor problems. the GM rolls secretly for 3. 

GM: Hey (Player) it looks like you have some minor problems come up: 

  1. The supervisor your coming to help fix kinda hates your guts. 
  2. The help you need will be very late. 
  3. The weather report for that day is pretty bad and the drive will be pretty dangerous. 

(Player): "Ok I do the following:

  1. Clear my schedule, and beg off some tasks for another day. I get there early. This way the storm would not be that bad. 
  2. I plan to drop by for some gift food: a nice piping hot pizza for the supervisor and try to recall his family from (social media). 
  3. As I get there with extra time I'll do all the work myself, but call in when I need support.  

You will notice that I have more details to work with and on the table is the nuances and complexity of real life. I can approach any detail as the GM and draw from it more problems or use it to enhance the drama of a particular problem. What was the objective is to get more out of the Player and work with that material. Make sure that the details are trade-offs. 

This technique works best if the GM doesnt need to be the one to add all the details and is keen on listening on the Players details. It allows the players to elaborate and have some small successes and to begin the "build up" or extend the climax point in Storytelling Pacing


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