Spoiler: We’re the Bad Guys

8 Feb

Last year a friend of mine finally convinced me to join his gaming group. They (not me, I’d never played tabletop games before) decided we’d go with Dungeons & Dragons 4th Edition rules and went from there.

Every week it became more apparent just how little I knew about how to play the game.

Luckily, the people in my D&D group are pretty chill. They’re down with sitting around roleplaying our characters through an entire session if that’s all we feel like doing (or if the GM is gone, i. e., asleep). When I don’t know what I’m doing, they mock me for hours and order me around, which is what friends are for, right?

I started out my first campaign bright eyed and bushy-tailed, character sheet in hand. I was going to play the super-cool Skulley, my favorite rogue, since I already knew the character inside and out. Confident this would give me a leg up on learning, you know, actual game mechanics, I leaped headlong into the game and promptly broke six teeth against the hard skull of Skulley’s ArchNemesis(tm), Jarderk AKA “The Douche”.

1) Playing a “cool” character does not work if you do not know the first thing about being cool.

2) Playing a “cool” character is impossible if the personification of everything they hate and wish to eradicate from this earth has, for some reason, become their boss.

Because of oppositional tensions within the group, we had difficulty coming to any kind of agreement about what to do, regardless of the situation. This did not phase our fearless leader or his new best buddy, who each came equipped with a terminal case of Ego and preferred to rush headlong into every situation the DM could throw at us. Skulley’s finesse went to waste; our shaman, Mouse, was relegated to the back row, frantically healing the dumbass duo who flew readily into harm’s way. Our dwarf, driven to the brink of tolerance, showed his horrifying true colors in our final showdown by slaying an unarmed prisoner through the bars of his own cell. Why? Because he lied.

By the time we made it halfway through our premade campaign, the villagers hated us. Hell, we hated us. We were jerks! As far as everyone was concerned, we were a bunch of cocky, reprehensible thugs who were as like to go on a murderous rampage as we were to complete the job. It ended our campaign. Skulley said “screw this” and left, Hardal the dwarf cleared his throat nervously and wiped the blood from his axe as the rest of the group looked on. Did that really just happen?

Yes, it happened. Why? Because we were bad people. Surprise, we’re the gorram bad guys. Once that little tidbit of information sank in, we began to embrace it. All right, fine. We’re not a force for good, nor are we particularly likeable. But that doesn’t stop us from having fun.

We eat and drink too much, sleep too little, miss completely obvious clues and split up when we ought to stay together; we lock doors against enemies who immediately pick the locks again and stab at our throats. We get distracted by pancakes, missing psychic distress calls from across town… over, and over, and over again. We make tea out of the wrong kind of grass, threaten the patients in our makeshift hospital (“don’t you dare die or I will resurrect you just so I can kill you again”), and kick each other in the junk.

It’s fun as hell, and I still have absolutely no clue what I’m doing.


8 Responses to “Spoiler: We’re the Bad Guys”

  1. Verdus February 8, 2011 at 2:40 am #

    That sounds like a really fun game you’re in. 🙂

    • Bika February 8, 2011 at 9:01 am #

      It IS pretty fun, yeah. OOCly we get along well. Our next game will have a dedicated GM who isn’t also playing a character, to prevent having “that one guy who doesn’t do anything but stand in the back and daydream about pancakes”… I hold out hope yet for a group of characters that actually get along as well as we do.

  2. Itanya Blade February 8, 2011 at 11:19 am #

    So they’re essentially the Prophecy of Light?

    • Bika February 8, 2011 at 12:13 pm #

      Well.. no. They aren’t even 1/4 as functional or skilled. (Mostly my fault, though.)

    • Claire February 8, 2011 at 1:50 pm #

      Hammaryn isn’t a bad guy, she’s just extremely misguided and mentally unstable. It’s fine, we’re fine.

      • Ghaar February 8, 2011 at 10:22 pm #

        Hey, it’s not Hardal’s fault.
        The guy lied.

        Sure he was a prisoner, but he also was a Kobold.
        If he answered straight he could have backstabbed Hardal, and Hardal wouldn’t have minded.
        you just don’t lie.


      • Bika February 8, 2011 at 11:00 pm #

        Heaven forbid Hardal ever asks anyone if his pants/mace/beard make him look fat.


  1. Spoiler: We’re the Bad Guys « Bika Central - February 8, 2011

    […] folks! I have a post up over at Seven Deadly Divas today about my awful first tabletop group. Check it out! "Uh, I think we're the bad guys." "Well… […]

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