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Headscratchers: The Gamers
  • I dislike how the powergamers are portrayed in the second movie. Not only are they completely 2 dimensional assholes (you can be powerful and still have character), but just how incompetently they're played. I mean, scoffing at initiative? There are enough ass kicking builds out there that going first in a round means no one has to (or gets to) go second.
    • Huh, I don't remember any scoffing at initiative. Anyway, even if I'm misremembering that, their behavior was realistic (I've heard stories of non-powergamers behaving similarly) and they didn't remain static — I actually thought it was pretty impressive.
    • They scoffed at the noob for taking the "Improved Initiative" feat. And to be fair, its a weak feat unless you chain it with some special abilities that give you extra advantages for going first (the 20% improvement is otherwise a little weak as a feat). What bugs me is how the noob was able to find a chain of crit boosting feats that the veteran munchkin power gamer was completely unaware of, especially in one week with only the player's handbook.
      • It is not a weak feat if you are a power gamer. A maxim in my group is that if you go first, the enemy doesn't get to go second.
    • And demonstrating that is exactly the point of this scene I guess!
    • To most of the D&D fanbase they are acceptable targets.
    • Lodge also tells them that their specific group has gotten a reputation, implying other power gamers won't take them seriously.
    • It's never really said that they're powergamers, just assholes and munchkins who don't roleplay or interact with the setting. They never seem to do anything to optimize their builds, and one of them was utterly shocked at how much worse a bard was in combat than his usual fighter.
      • A Munchkin in gaming terms is a powergamer (specifically of the no roleplaying variety). Perhaps the GM is using the term wrong.
      • A Munchkin is someone who tries to accumulate 'plusses' and 'win' the game, even in a context where that makes no sense or doesn't mean anything. You have to actually be effective and optimize your character to be a powergamer (and not necessarily break the rules). It's fully possible to be one without being the other. Check the Munchkin page for a deeper explanation.
    • Ah, and of course seducing priestesses, or raising a roasted chicken from the dead cannot be interpreted as "role-playing" or "interacting with the setting". They're all role-playing, except for Cass. Cass is a Munchkin.
      • "Hide behind the pile of dead bards!"

  • Towards the end of the sequel, the party was unable to resurrect Flynn because the staff was out of charges. But he wasn't being resurrected by the staff- Leo had 50 identical backup bards. We didn't see him die 50 times, so why did they suddenly need the staff to bring him back?
    • He died 50 times offscreen.
    • He also didn't put his employees to work making those character sheets until after that first session.
    • I was under the impression he was reserving the 50 character sheets for large combats with multiple villains, not the one-on-one boss fight. Plus, it's not like bards would just be roaming around a dark and abandoned mine at random moments...
    • He did use them. He kept flipping out new sheets, he started because the staff of resurrection was causing too much level loss (third edition, each resurrection brings your character back one level lower.) And they were all indeed roaming about in the same area because the sorcerer hid behind a pile of Leo's dead Bards to prepare a spell.
    • They also never actually say that the staff has 50 charges.

  • In the sequel a few moments while funny broke their own setting and made me scoff. Notably how the "resurrect the paladin wish" is basically played as a Jerk moment for the Monk's player but really it was a stupid wish and NOT in character for Daphne. She has a staff of resurrection that just needs a recharge and MINUTES ago the Bard (who had been dead for hours at least) was resurrected by the temple maidens. Honestly just take the paladin into the next room, considering he frigging gave his life to defeat the evil Hierophant you think they would turn down resurrecting not only a hero but one of their own temple members?
    • It's not inconceivable that being killed by the Hierophant (the one with the Mask of Death, remember?) was some kind of special death which could only be reversed by divine intervention.
    • They could have been shown trying at least. Its an unlimited wish.
    • Gods, even good and grateful ones, are not known for their patience when they grant boons. "Hey, could you wait a minute while we go check if normal resurrection can raise him." would probably not have elected a very favorable reaction from the goddess.
    • Would it help to assume that Cass's explosion is only partly about the wish? His anger may be unconsciously fuelled by having to watch Joanna and Lodge succeed in two areas where he has in some sense failed—Lodge at capturing Joanna's heart, and Joanna at becoming Lodge's favorite player. For a guy who cares about winning as much as Cass does, that's gotta chafe, even if he's not fully aware of what's bothering him on a conscious level.
      • Exactly, and she doesn't just waste the wish. She wastes it on Lodge's pet NPC. Somewhere in there, he's losing it because she blew an extremely valuable party boon for the benefit of the man she's been flirting with.
    • All that matters is that Joanna, who remember is a complete newbie, thought it was in character (and she had explicitly told Kevin she thought the ending should surprise him earlier).

  • The portrayal of bards bothered me.The only way a bard would die 50 times (one was from an undead chicken) would be if he rolled ones constantly. Bards are great when it comes to surviving dangerous stuff. Either we use enough illusions to make even us forget what's real, we'll buff and debuff like it's going out of style or we'll teleport the heck out of there. The only justifiable explanation for the bard's death is he dropped all spellcasting to build a combat bard and if you're going to try that with a monk and fighter on your side you've made a mistake.
    • Who says he didn't make a combat bard? The GM points out that the player has only rolled fighters before, and the player retorts (in seriousness), "How different can they be?" Sounds like a combat bard is exactly what he would have rolled.
    • It is not altogether uncommon for bards to be portrayed this way, it's a very obvious and easy thing to make jokes off when a bard is involved in the party and it's a comedy film about roleplaying games.
    • The player didn't seem to have any experience with bards (or probably any non-warrior classes, for that matter). Also, comedy.
    • Rule of Funny Bards depending on who you ask Bards are either a bad class or Difficult but Awesome they just really emphasized that.
    • Don't forget that the ending hinges on him finally using his class features properly.
    • Also, it's hinted that Leo has really bad luck with characters. One of the others said that his bard's first death broke his old record for shortest life.
    • This experienced Dungeons & Dragons troper will fully vouch for that. I've been playing for over a decade but rarely tried the bard class and it requires a different mindset than most classes.
    • It's intended for Rule of Funny but a serious look at the movie can show that Lodge apparently goes out of his way to target and kill Flynn, well before Leo escalates the conflict with the 50 spare character sheets. Between the goblins (twice, not counting what is apparently a friendly fire incident), apparently friendly fire from Silence's melee attack against the zombie ninjas, an incident where one of the bad guys kills him for the sake of showing how much of a threat he is, and...Sir Osric accidentally killing Flynn, the poor Bard ended up dying no fewer than six times. Looks more like Lodge has it in for Leo's character, or he's also forgotten that Leo's playing something other than a tanky Fighter.
    • He might also be lower level than the rest of them as some dead-raising effects lower the character's levels.

  • In Dorkness Rising, Cass explodes when Joanna uses her one wish to resurrect the NPC paladin instead of attaining godhood or similar. Most experienced D&D players know that using one of the predefined effects of wish or miracle is the safe way to go, even if it's less exciting. Making an open-ended wish is tantamount to telling the DM "Please screw over my character and possibly the entire party. No. I insist." The "noob" proved to know the system better here.
    • They specifically called it an unlimited wish which was granted directly by a benevolent deity they just saved. She did waste that wish.
    • Strictly speaking, no-one in the movie denies that she wasted it in practical terms. It was explicitly a story decision.

  • What's with the continuity between the first film and the second? How does Mark remember the murder of all his friends when Lodge seems cheerfully oblivious? Speaking of which, how is Lodge alive? Or did that all just happen in the game?
    • Lodge is a different character played by the same actor.

  • Why does Lodge always seem to go for Leo's character? Granted a fair few times he gets killed by accident but when Lodge needs a character to attack he almost always goes for Flynn. Granted Leo could be an annoying jerk but he was arguably the least annoying out of him, Gary and Cass.
    • Rule of Funny. He was the designed Butt Monkey after all.
    • It's possible, at least at first, that Lodge just got into the habit of targeting Leo's characters first, since he normally plays meat shield fighters. Since he's a bard (and Leo doesn't really get the class, at least at first), attacks that would have been mostly annoying were fatal. It quickly became rule of funny, though.

  • The Legacy's ultimate goal is to make the game more like Poker or Magic. Why aren't they just playing poker or Magic? If they aren't as good as the competition in those games they have to realize they would be pretty quickly pushed out of this one as soon as it becomes desirable for pros.
    • They don't want it to be more like Poker or Magic, they just want it to have for-cash tournaments like Poker and Magic already have. It is possible that they just aren't any good at Poker or Magic. From what we see, the mechanics of the game they are good at are quite different from those of Magic, and very different from those of Poker. And they would, by definition, be more experienced in those mechanics than anyone who only joined the game after it went professional and they were lured in by the promise of money. Why spend time and effort getting good enough at an existing professional game to take on players more experienced than you, when you can just take a game you're naturally good at already and make that professional?

  • In Dorkness Rising, the last boss fight seems to hinge on the party having a bard, or at least someone having the perform skill. That seems like a particularly poor design choice to me.
    • The song is a hymn to the dominant god, a Cleric or Paladin could probably do it too.
      • The DMPC is a Paladin of the appropriate god and was shown shrugging off the spell before being taken out himself, so he clearly had an out.

  • In Hands of Fate, the running asides dealing with Gary's obsession with hydra dong. Given that the legends only deals with severed heads growing back doubled, rather than limbs (which, granted, do grow back in some versions, just not twice as many as were cut off), there is a flaw in the logic he's using. Ok, I grant the colloquial term for glans could grant an exception, but it presupposes a mammalian penis, as opposed to the more thematically consistent reptilian...

GameraHeadscratchers/FilmGangs of New York

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