Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Regarding failure in the game

So, we finally ran up against plain old orcs in my AD&D game the other night. I've wanted orcs for awhile now -- they crunch really nicely, aren't that hard to hit, and won't wipe out the party.

Uh, except that none of us were rolling at all well, to hit wise.

This got annoying.

Then frustrating.

And finally, it was just plain funny.

We did finally take out the orcs and move on with the rest of the game, but for a while there we thought we were going to have another TPK. One guy rolled five separate 1's, but he was playing his character and the other fighter in the group whose player couldn't be there so it's not like one character had that bad of luck.

We didn't lose any player characters, either. Nobody even got seriously wounded.

But we did have an awful lot of fun. We laugh quite a bit in this game. Obscure puns abounded, as they usually do. For example:

DM: "You hear a rustling sound."

Me: "What, like Bill Cosby's kid brother?" (Bill's brother's name is Russell.)

DM: "I knew somebody would get that!"

Nobody else on the planet might find that funny, but I laughed. I guess you had to be there.

Now, look, there are things about this game that bother me. But there are a tableful of good people hanging around, and we have a hell of a good time. And that so far outweighs my petty quibbles that they're not even worth mentioning.

So I won't.

I'm in a damn good game, the occasional failure notwithstanding, and I'm happy about that.

And happy Saint Patrick's Day to you all!


bliss_infinte said...

That's why any encounter is never a sure win - those cursed dice!

The 2nd encounter my 1st level players ran into were a handful of not so giant spiders. I've never seen so many 1's to hit and then if there was a hit, a 1 for damage. It was looking pretty grim. The whole event enhanced the 'lack of skill' for 1st level adventures and the fog of battle. It turned out to be a hilarious blast and is still our most memorable combat and is referred to often.

Will Douglas said...

That's the thing, really -- I find that failures can be more memorable than successes.

I still remember one character I had, about 25 years ago. He was a halfling fighter with an 18 con (so +5 to saves vs. poison). And we encountered spiders, little bitty guys. We were in a cave, I had an arrow knocked, but the DM rules that I couldn't have "opportunity fire", so the spiders came on...

And I rolled a '1' on my saving throw! (That was the only time that character died, although he came close on many occasions. But that one really stands out, to this day.)