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Category Archives: Bad GM

This is my first of possibly many posts of good tips from a bad GM. This is your opportunity to learn from my mistakes! And I make a lot of mistakes!

My first tip is from a game I ran where the players did something I would not have done. This happens all the time really, but in this case, the players should have run from the encounter and instead, for whatever reasons, decided to stay and fight it out despite the fact they really had no chance.

Once they made their decision to stay, they tried a last ditch ruse to distract the forces against them, and I, as a bad GM, let that ruse work too well. I used it as an excuse to let the players off the hook and get away with all the objectives. I should not have done that.

What I should have done is, well, anything but that. After reflecting I realized any of these other alternatives would have been much, much preferable:

– Have them incapacitated and captured, thus setting up an escape game.

– Have them partially succeed with the ruse (which was very good and well executed), but leave them with problems they will have to deal with, such as permanent wounds or consequences that will take some sort of major quest to resolve.

So next time your players make a bone head decision to fight on despite the odds, don’t feel like you have to let them get away with it. And, you don’t have to TPK them to have their crazy decisions reap consequences. It will make for a more fun game in the end!

– Bad GM