Right here:Shhh said:Just wondering, where in all this is the room for the shady bastard noble, the one who bought his title with coin or took it at the end of a sword, and uses his wealth and power for his own machiavellian schemes? He may not be the shining knight to whom so many aspire, but such characters have been integral to many a good story, both fantastical and historical.
There are people that like to play backstabby people, and that's cool. Some of those people could even aspire to and achieve noble rank through all manner of shady dealings, and I'm all good with that. However, I tend to find that many of those players end up falling into a number of pittraps along the way:jpariury said:Even the guy who plays an evil, backstabby jerk, if he's dropping OOG to make sure people are having fun, or metagaming in a way that encourages participation (i.e. - passes on mods or rewards in favor of letting newer people go after them), he's contributing out-of-game by keeping the larger picture of what makes a good game for others. Whether or not your nobles are good guys, they should exist to improve the game experience
- They view themselves as playing against plot and the other players. - In my mind, there is no room for that in the Alliance game, which is, by its nature, a game of social interactive storytelling. It's one thing to view your character as trying to overcome the lich king or even take his place, it's another to view yourself as trying to outthink the plot team itself, or out maneuver your other players.
- They tend to focus on their own story, and only their own story - again, the game is, at its root, social interactive storytelling. While it might make complete and total sense to try and perm out everyone that crosses you, it doesn't make for an enjoyable game, so as the player of an evil bastard, it behooves you to try and be evil and bastardly in a way that is interesting to the other players.
- Despite statements of "it's just a game" and "it's nothing personal", players of evil bastards tend to take things as a personal affront when things don't go their way.
There's also the problem of having a plot team who knows what to do with you. I had a character who was pretty cut-throat. He'd kill his own mother for the right price. I found that players tended to try and use him to do things to other players that they did not want to do themselves, for fear of the social OOG stigma of having done it. That didn't interest me, but I'd written him into a corner, and so I shelved him. Plot didn't really do anything with the character because A - it wasn't really the kind of character they wanted to write for, and B - they didn't really know what to do with him. One chapter actually had some neat ideas (like hiring him to kill off one of the key NPC nobles), but plans fall through, so there you have it.
There's room for it, but it takes even more effort, because you still want the player to represent the best of your playership, even if the character is scum of the earth.