God vs. The Creator(s)
July, 2000

First off, all bible thumpers put away the torches, this has nothing to do with religion, and everything to do with role playing games. 'Kay?

Good. This came about because during the last session Datafage brought up one of my more memorable (shadowrun) NPCs, a woman with an Irish accent, charisma up the wazoo, and the ability to turn a psycho street sammie inside out - literally. Christened 'Psycho Bitch' after pretending to send the characters to the past, I decided she was some sort of ultra powerful spirit that would likely have come back to plague the characters quite often. ::grins evilly:: That and the instant I drag out my lame brogue it makes the guys cringe.

But she only made one more appearance when I was in desperate need of a hold out run until the other GM arrived. I traded the GM hat in for being a player. And ya know what? As great as it is to torment the characters, I have as much or more fun being a PC. And so I decided to publicly dissect why that is, hence this rant.

How's THAT for an introduction? ;)

So, let's start off with defining the Game Master's purpose. The GM performs the basic functions of your generic deity; providing heroes with problems/crisis's/whatever to solve and determining the course of history and peoples' actions. As with many things of ultimate power, fun but stressful, particularly when the players refuse to cooperate to the point where you need to have wererats kidnap them and drag them down to the sewers where they're so obviously supposed to go. In my case, I knew exactly what was supposed to happen, what they were supposed to do, and so on. If you know anything about human nature or RPGs, then you know that 5 seconds into the game, the PCs have blown all plans to hell and back. So I didn't handle that too well.

So let's go look at the Players. While the GM/god provides the setting, directions, trappings, and background color, the PCs provide the actual feats, and therefore the total outcome. So the PCs are the true creators, forming the story from the GM's notes and general outline. If you get right down to it, the PCs have more power than the GM. Sure, the GM can force the characters onto the correct path (those @#$% wererats ;), but at that point people aren't having fun anymore. Everybody's frustrated, nobody does what the other wants due to sheer stubbornness, and leads to things like the pyro blowing up the entire party.

And when you get to the source, the players are creating the - A - story. And ya all know my feelings on that.

Obsessive? Who, me? ;)

As always, comments can be e-mailed to Norcumi@backtick.net, or Instant Messaged to the same addres; /p>

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