Being a Game Master is one of the HARDEST jobs in the RPG world. Creating whole new worlds for your players to frolic around in is a difficult task. Deciding how much detail you put into that world has always been the toughest part of the job for me. As a person I am drawn to stories that require a lot of leg work. Stories that allow you to dig into the histories of people, places, and things. Sometimes (as a player) I was so good at finding out background information that I never even had to fight. I found other ways to complete my objective. As a player these were the best kinds of stories out there.
As a Game Master I have had a new challenge. The players that I am currently GMing for have a very different style of Game Play. They like to shoot first keep on shoot shoot some more, and when everyone is dead try and get a question or two in. This has been hard for me as a GM, and coming up with effective stories has been even harder. For months I would create a story that would allow for the characters to both fight and do a little detective work. The problem was they would NEVER do ANY detective work. All they wanted to do was shoot and blow things up.
So last night I created a game that was perfect for them. Their task was to steal a piece of artwork that was being guarded by a large number of guards and security drones. I thought this was going to be the battle of a lifetime. Anyone want to guess what happened??? Instead of jumping in guns blazing they decided to do a little detective work. They wanted backgrounds on all of the security guards, blue prints on the underground subway and septic system, composition layouts of the walls in the building, etc.
I was so blown away that I actually faltered a bit and had to tell them that I didn’t have any of those things ready. They didn’t seem to mind and asked if I would have them ready for next weeks game. They provided me a list of questions they wanted answered and each answer will determine how they will respond to the acquisition of the art. I was blown away.
They really threw me a curve ball there. So next week I really don’t know what to expect. It still could turn into the epic battle of all time or they may just slip in quietly and take the art right off the wall. Who knows, but I am anxious to find out!