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Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

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garhkal
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Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#1 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 12:57 pm

So, for a little back story;
Our group initially consisted of 4 players. One eventually quit the game due to living 50+ miles away, and started our group and stuck with it for 4 game sessions, till our player #s were up.
One other moved out of state recently. A third of the initial core group had a pair of family deaths, that caused him to drop out of gaming entirely for now.
However, over the months, we've had over 8 other players come in to the group, some have stayed, some left after 2 or so sessions (were used to path finder/5e DND, so didn't really feel comfortable with 2e's rules set). Eventually we got to a 'standard' of 3 players (the last of the core 4, and 2 of the new-joins). This gave us (between active/inactive and deceased characters) a total pool of 25 over-all, though some had been totally rendered 'retired' due to the player of them only being in the group for one total session (when he quit due to finding out that we use a rule he totally despises, which was a GROUP consensus), and 2 others left (after not feeling this older edition). Including henchmen the group's had over the time, we actually come close to hitting 30 characters who've been around.
OF that, 17 have been fighters, either single or multi class. And of those, 6 (inc 3 of the henchmen, 2 who were made using the point build option of cha generation), have had % str. All the other 10, have had a 17 (OR LOWER) in strength.
Heck one even has only a 12 str (but was built up as an archer, due to his 17 Dex)..

Recently (back in late Jan) that last of the core 4, moved up to Michigan for work, dropping us down to 2. However, one of the other 'drop out's came back, bringing us back up to 3. So i asked that initial drop out player, to also come back if he could, for a little while, till our numbers re-settled' (had 2 potential new players, but medical issues kept one out for a while, and 2 others who were interested, but have yet to make a showing).

Because of how the game's proceeded, we (due to having a weekend our core group was put on "Time out") made up a "B-team" of adventurers 5 strong, which included the two starting PC's of that guy i asked to come back, and 3 of the inactivated pcs, two picked up by another player, and one assigned as a DMPC (group henchmen in effect)..

So far, the "Active group consists of two L6 fighters, a L5/4 Ftr/mage, a L5 fighter, a L3 mage (training to L4), the new player's character of a L3 fighter, a L5/4 priest/mage, a L5/5 fighter/priest, and a L5 priest, and a Henchman of the Cl/Mage who's a L3 fighter.

Our back up team has a L2 fighter, a L3 ranger, a L3 priest, a L4/4 fighter/priest, and a l2//4 fighter dualed into thief..

Now, one of my house rules, is that Each player makes up 2 characters (a primary, and a back up). They can rotate playing either/or, if our # of players are 5 or more, but if 4 or lower, they can actually play both at the same time. This is to keep the # of active characters in the group, above 5.

The guy i asked to come back, took over one of the two L6 fighters, and the L5 fighter (the one who has a 17 Str).

Last Sat's game session, ended with his L6 fighter being magically held (and getting ready to get killed, once the Shaman who held him fishes popping off spells to keep his leader in the fight), while his other character (the L5 fighter), kept rolling so poorly, out of over a dozen attacks, he HIT ONLY once..

So after we called the game for the night, and were in process of clean up/pack up, that player kind of moaned about how 'useless' his L5 character is, and why doesn't he just die..

Later in the night, i got an email from him, mentioning how he is going to skip Next session, because of how 'useless he feels his two characters are, and how i just "DUMPED them into his lap, especially in the fact HE feels the lower fighter, "Just isn't properly made to be uber effective in any area.. He's just too 'well rounded'...

Going back and forth in the emails, it almost looks to ME, like this player is threatening to rage-quit the game, unless i allow him to Re-tool his PC.. Even though NEITHER of the other players asked, have ever felt the character sucks, is under valued/incompetent etc..


Now as i have never let a player, after a game's been running 20+ sessions, re-tool a character before, SHOULD i start now, just to keep this player? Or should i let him go?

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JadedDM
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Re: Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#2 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 2:38 pm

Is he actually asking to retool or are you just inferring it? If the latter, I'd make sure the two of you are communicating clearly and aren't heading for a big misunderstanding (he may just be venting and have no intention of quitting). Even if he does want to retool, and even if he intends to leave otherwise, it might be worth finding out exactly how he wants to. The changes may be minor enough to not be a hassle to implement.

Is your objection to him possibly retooling the character lie only in that you've never done it before? Or is there another reason?

That said, the job of the DM is to make sure everyone is having fun. If retooling the character is not on the table, for whatever reason, could he just be allowed to roll up his own? Or is there some other compromise that might make him enjoy playing more?

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Billy_Buttcheese
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Re: Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#3 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:53 pm

In general, I've never had anyone "rage quit" a game but I have had folks that were occasionally forced to take over playing a PC that was not of their creation and become frustrated by that. Most players want ownership of their own PCs. Maybe you could discuss allowing him to roll up his own fighter and just bump him up to the minimum levels of the rest of the group, providing him with one or two minor magic items like a +1 shield or similar and maybe a potion or two. If he feels like his PC isn't a viable actor in the group, no amount of persuasion and/or discussion on your part is likely to change his mind. There is nothing that can be done for bad dice luck. Some nights are like that, even for the DM. If the player is mature enough to agree with that premise, you should find out what he proposes as a permanent fix. If his proposition is workable, let him try it, or have an alternate suggestion for him. Then if the problem persists, he will then not have much (any) leverage on you for being a hard-ass DM. In essence, if you try to work with him and he is still unhappy, you aren't the one with the problem.

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Meph
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Re: Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#4 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 5:07 pm

I guess the biggest question I have is why he NEEDS to play those characters. Back in high school our regular game consisted of 3 regular players, 4 on occasion. Everything I ran was homebrew so I was able to scale it to the group size and nobody ever played more than one character. Judging by your post it seems like you have had a lot of turnover lately with players and the player in question is even one who left but you asked to come back and fill in. Does he even really want to be there? If he is just a quick fix until you find more players I would suggest moving on without him. Having a player there that really isn't having fun for whatever reason can easily drag your whole group down if you aren't careful.

I have had a boon of players in the last couple years but I decided for the upcoming game to limit it to 6 at most, 5 being optimal. I find the more players (this goes for characters also) means the game slows, combat takes longer, and more chance for general unhappiness from DM or Player. I would talk to this guy and see what he really wants. If he is only back short term then I wouldn't bend over backwards. If he wants to stay then I would even go as far as give him xp points equal to the average level of the rest of the party and allow him to roll up a character he WANTS to play. Either way be careful. I wouldn't just give in to his demands if he is just being a baby about a bad night's rolls. If he wants to play and just doesn't enjoy the fighter, let him play something else.

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garhkal
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Re: Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#5 » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:55 pm

JadedDM wrote:Is he actually asking to retool or are you just inferring it?


He inferred it himself..

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One of the reasons is because he doesn't use fighting styles.  He has proficiencies in dagger and morningstar, which are worthless, and medium shield, which he shouldn't be using.  He should instead have weapon styles of 1 handed and 2 handed, with an additional slot in one of them.  Actually, if you really wanted to make him powerful, you'd give him ambidexterity and 2 weapon fighting and give him 2 bastard swords.  That's a lot more damage- about double what Shu-Shu does against bugbears and while it wouldn't have helped against the gargoyles really nothing he did would have made him effective against them, and that's fine.  He doesn't need to be effective against every kind of creature, just some of them.

 I'd prefer being able to put slots into two handed fighting to give a barbarian 5/2 combat speed, but the only way to get that is with two weapons, so....

Maybe I should rebuild him from scratch.


Certainly seems like he's saying he wants to retool it..

JadedDM wrote:If the latter, I'd make sure the two of you are communicating clearly and aren't heading for a big misunderstanding (he may just be venting and have no intention of quitting). Even if he does want to retool, and even if he intends to leave otherwise, it might be worth finding out exactly how he wants to. The changes may be minor enough to not be a hassle to implement.


Looking at how he wants to do it, it sounds like a "from the ground up' total revamp. Not a little minor change (like say switching around a weapon spec from say his axe, to bastard sword).

JadedDM wrote:Is your objection to him possibly retooling the character lie only in that you've never done it before? Or is there another reason?


My objection is i only allow 'retooling', for flat out newbie players to the game, within 3-5 sessions of starting.. That's mainly because they don't know the game that well, and during those first few sessions, they might see someone else do something/read/get told about something they like, which would be better than what they are doing as is..
BUT once they're past that time, or for players who are NOT total newbies, they are locked in. If they wish a change, retire the character, and start a new one. At first level!

So in this case, he'd be giving up a perfectly (imo) viable 5th level pc, to drop back down

JadedDM wrote: If retooling the character is not on the table, for whatever reason, could he just be allowed to roll up his own? Or is there some other compromise that might make him enjoy playing more?


I've told him twice now, if he wants, he can UN retire his older initial characters, both are still 3rd level. Though in his most recent email, he mentioned

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I did look at my 'B' characters at the end of the last session for that reason.   Bolormaa would fit in well- she's primarily an archer, which we don't have, and her menagerie would prevent us from getting ambushed twice a week.  Her main problem is that if she uses her bow when others are in melee she hits her allies as much as she hits her enemies.  Still, using a medium lance and scimitar together in combat would be an effective combination. 

Khutuktu is more problematic.  Been a while since I played him, but iirc his stats, style and spells were extremely unsuited for combat.  He can stay out of (unmounted) combat and just heal people, but we have other people who can both do that and fight.


So he might go with the ranger (bolormma), which i would have no problem with..

Meph wrote:I guess the biggest question I have is why he NEEDS to play those characters.


I much prefer a somewhat higher # of actual Characters than some do. If i have only 4 or LOWER players, i LET them run 2 characters each (if they wish).

Meph wrote:Judging by your post it seems like you have had a lot of turnover lately with players and the player in question is even one who left but you asked to come back and fill in. Does he even really want to be there?


Yea, i have..
And as to that "it doesn't sound like he wants to be here".. That's what i am feeling..

Meph wrote:If he is just a quick fix until you find more players I would suggest moving on without him. Having a player there that really isn't having fun for whatever reason can easily drag your whole group down if you aren't careful.


That's the way i am leaning, letting him know "thanks for the help with keeping the group alive when we dropped down to 2 players" and move on. But i am not sure, if that might or might not leave a bad taste in the other players minds...

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Meph
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Re: Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#6 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 3:00 am

garhkal wrote:That's the way i am leaning, letting him know "thanks for the help with keeping the group alive when we dropped down to 2 players" and move on. But i am not sure, if that might or might not leave a bad taste in the other players minds...


That is the part I would be careful of. If you seem heavy handed to everyone then it could backfire and trickle down. Did he make this character originally or did you just hand him these players to play? I would still ask his intentions. If he wants to stay and continue to play then maybe invite him to roll a new character. If these were his characters before and he just doesn't like them then maybe let him "retire" and move on. Just remind him of what he would be losing such as xp earner, magic items, etc.

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garhkal
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Re: Ever have a player "rage quit" a game?

Post#7 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:57 am

He made 2 guys up initially, back when the group was started way back last year. BUT since he'd been absent for quite a while, they had been "retired". And as the group at the time was battling on an island, it made more sense for him to take over 2 existing characters in the group, one was a group NPC (Serngroot), the other was a character one of the other players had picked up the playing off, after the player of him had left the group 2 mo before..

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