>your players reach a deep and wide underground lake that is too treacherous to swim
>their minor side quest objective is on the other side
>leave the cave and spend the next four in-game days painstakingly constructing a boat from nearby timber instead of going to the nearby town and acquiring one through good roleplay
>whole process takes thirty seconds in irl time
How do you go about preventing this kind of situation? I like to use a main quest with some kind of time constraint:
- giant meteor hurtling towards earth
- foreign king giving a deadline for treaty conditions to be met before he invades with his crushingly powerful army
- party is under a curse that weakens or kills them over time
- kidnapped loved ones sentenced for execution on a certain date
Share your ideas or workarounds.
Confront them with small nasty things that might come up (hurting but not dangerous insect stings, weather, lack of a shower/sanitation etc.) . Ask them to roleplay their boredom while doing boring things. This roleplay should influence XP influx.
Why punish your players like that if there's no real urgency then why the hell can't they build there own boat its a great team building exercise.
Buying a boat is not much roleplay at all.
>go to village
>there are two fishermen who hate each other
>their boats are their livelihood
>have to pay a retarded gp price or somehow convince these stubborn rednecks to give it to you cheap
>somehow obtain boat
>figure out how to transport it across two miles of dense forest to the cave dungeon
>say "we build a boat"
>have a boat
which one requires more roleplay?
>go to village
>venture out of caverns to spooky forest
>prospect for good materials
>encounter spooky forest creatures
>have to deal with feuding elves
>somehow obtain boat
>transport it all the way back to the underground river
Which one did you obviously want the players to choose?
For me personally, I wouldn't GM a game without a measure of urgency. Otherwise you end up in situations where a player says, "Okay, we're going to go kill random monsters for a few months and come back to this when we've gained a level or three. For me, what gives urgency is as important as what the goal of the campaign is in the first place.
I ran a campaign a few years back on the simplest of premises. Dragon captures princess, rescue princess. The thing is the princess was to be married to the local fey aristocracy, as part of an ancient pact between mortal and fey. The fey kept the rampant and cancerous growth of the forest under control, the mortals supplied beautiful spouses of high lineage to add variety to the fey courts. However, the deadline for her wedding was fast approaching, and with none of the proper pre-marital arrangements having been completed, the forests were starting their encroachment with a vengeance. This gave a constant visual indicator to the players of how much time they had before everything was swallowed up by rampant growth.
>>their boats are their livelihood
this makes this scenario really implausible, noone likes to sell the boad he needs, even if he can now share with his new found friend. what if the other boat would break?
convincing them is much less feasible than building a primitive boat/raft. you sound a bit like a railroading GM who sticks to fixed, slightly implausible ideas that your players dont share.
>which one requires more roleplay?
roleplay requirement in the second case is as high as player interaction demands, remember that the players have to work together. roleplay requirement in the first case is probably centered around a single person (the most social one) from your group, so it is boring for the rest.
Usually building the boat? Railroading with shitty sidequests is not fun OP, and that's all anyone cares about with ttg. Urgency can pound sand if it means I can't do what I want
What's wrong with just building the boat?
If the fishers are that stubborn AND depend on those boats for their livelihood, convincing them to sell might take just as long as building the boat, and that's before you now have the problem of how the fuck you're getting that boat through the forest in one piece.
>guys help my PCs decided to take the obvious easy route that doesn't cost that much resources or time for a side quest instead of talking to my shitty npcs
Go cry somewhere else.
Fuck off Dave, the only reason we're on this "side" quest is because your DMPC accepted it without asking us first.
We're building the boat because last time we tried to talk to NPCs to help with a "simple" problem, we got stonewalled for in-game weeks until we found out the random hobo on the other side of the city was the one we had to talk to to "progress."
>You know the town is only several miles away you can just go get one and drag it back. you don't have to build one.
>I know, this way is more fun though.
Time constraints and urgency feel like railroading if not handled carefully.
If every mission had a time sensitive curse or meteror about to hit, it gets gay quickly.
If making the PCs return to the village, instead of building a boat is important, I'd suggest other methods.
>PCs weight is greater than the boats capacity
>boat is poorly made and sinks
>standing there chopping trees creates enough noise to attract (insert lv critter).
>make them rp the building "OK, you get the tree cut down, now roll again to remove unnecessary brush", then roll to chop it into proper lengths. It will be easier for them to return to town.
>lack of proper tools it material
Just a few ideas
The fault lies with the GM, if your players want to do something it's your job to make it interesting.
I have a feeling my players are going to try and pick the magic crystals off the bottom of the Island turtle on which they are stuck, in order to sell later.
ignoring all cues that if they do something else they would get a boat/progress the plot blah blah blah
you had better believe I'm not going to make it easy for them. sure they can swim down the the bottom of the turtle but how do they chip off the crystals? where do they sell them? to the locals!? yeah they're going to be real happy the players are trying to steal from them.