Louisville: The Dixie Debu-Détente Ball
These are my basic 3.5 rules. Most of them are still applicable. None of these are concrete, either. There is some wiggle.
1. First and foremost: See that section of the Character Sheet with the word alignment? Don’t worry about it too much. Character’s alignments are for describing their outlook on life, not whether or not you can be a monk or druid.
2. But don’t ignore it. It is still important to me, as it acts as a shorthand for how you’re likely to react in certain situations. This is important information for the person who is designing the world around you. Also note: When you fill this part out, if you character would normally wear a label with the word “Evil” in it, do not pass go. I won’t say no to a good concept, but it makes my life infinitely easier to keep things to LG, NG, CG, LN, TN, and CN. And for the love of all that I hold holy, don’t play lawful stupid or lawful douche bag.
3. I reserve the right to say no to certain characters, even after the first session. Sometimes, a character just doesn’t work. And sometimes, characters evolve and grow. If I foresee a problem, or if another player complains, we’ll have a chat. I don’t want to ever have to retire a character, but we’re a group of friends, and friends don’t let some words on a sheet of paper get in the way of that. Since I’m the moderator and referee, I get the final say.
4. This is a corollary to #3. You have a right to build and play the character you want. You don’t have the right to tell another player how to play their character or how to build or play their own. We can be constructive. We can help each other. But if you have a problem with another character, bring it to me. I don’t want anyone’s feelings hurt. Chances are I will know more about the other players’ characters than you, so instead of possibly forcing the player to share something that they’d rather not at this stage, we can try and work something out. And don’t be afraid of having your character sit out a session or two because they’re preoccupied or uncomfortable with something that’s going on. This happens to us in real life, it’ll happen to your characters. We can’t save the world every day. Sometimes, the character might need to go work off some steam by working on a farm or doing some smithing. And sometimes, though we may love our friends dearly, we really, really want to strangle them. So, if you foresee a problem, either let me know or take the character out for a session or two.
5. In keeping with the conclusion of #4, feel free to build alts. If you feel like exploring a different character, your current character is chaffing a bit, or something unfortunate happens you’ll have a lifeline. XP will be even for everyone at any given time. This also means multiclassing is free, though no Dippy McMulticlasses will be allowed. Bonuses for good roleplaying, bringing munchies, or sexual favors will be awarded in another fashion.
6. Sometimes, what your fellows don’t know will make the game more interesting. If your name is Inigo Montoya, and that dude killed your father you don’t have to tell anyone else, even if they ask why you have such a hate-on for that dude. Likewise, your bard need only have the Perform Skill to be a bard. Your hedge witch could mechanically be a wizard, or could really be a wizard who is in hiding. Sometimes, what your fellows don’t know will make the game more interesting. I won’t say no to keeping secrets at the table.
7. The ruling on the table stands. Sometimes I am wrong. I know this. You know this. To Err is Human and all of that. That said, when I make a decision, we go with that for the time being. Feel free to bring it up over a break or before and after sessions. If you disagree with a rules interpretation, I really do want to know and I appreciate input – at an appropriate time. But I also want the game to run. This one is strictly for game flow.