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  • Storytellers do you allow...

    Hey now I have a VtR/CoD game table question.
    This is regarding at the actual game table in person not online gaming at all.

    Storytellers do you allow your VtR players ...
    *... to have their books open on their turn?
    *... to have their books open at the table during game.

    I will withhold my comments and reasons until the discussion has started.

    Best regards
    Last edited by Graylion; 04-17-2019, 09:22 PM.



    Roleplaying not Rollplaying or Ruleplaying
    Current Focus
    Storypath & Storypath to Run CoD, VtR, WtF, MtA
    Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition

  • #2
    Providing they're game related sure.

    Comment


    • #3
      If they are related to the game currently being played, yes.
      It is an established rule in my house that I and guest GMs don’t compete with the television, smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc. for the players’ attention and will end the session entirely if even one player doesn’t excuse themself and decides to get on their phone, turn on the TV, or start texting, tweeting, or instant messaging. Spare me the excuses about your character sheet being a pdf file and having digital copies of the book. I have a printer where you can print out a copy of your character sheet before we start and my books are on the table to be referenced at any time. If for some reason, two copies of the book are needed at the same time, I would allow referring to a digital copy but it doesn’t stay out.

      Comment


      • #4
        They have books?

        What nonsense is this?


        Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
        The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
        Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.

        Comment


        • #5
          We've always allowed that. Even back in the "good" old days with physical books we certainly were able to look through them. Actively reading in it during your turn would be kinda disruptive unless you were looking up the particulars around what you're planning to do, but banning books would've been a lot more disruptive considering that no one can hold all information in their heads.
          Nowadays it's basically impossible to check since we all use laptops for character sheets, books, taking notes and researching setting elements.
          As for not using laptops; I'm not willing to print out my 11 pages long character sheet every time I play Vampire (1-2 times a week), nor my 30+ pages of notes. (An extreme example since it's a five year long game at this point and our sessions goes from afternoons to around midnight.) Nor am I interested in transcribing new notes and character updates so it'll be easy to read through and edit at a later date.

          But really, what's the point of the players not being able to read the rules for the game they're playing? With time you'll memorise most of the relevant stuff and have notes on particulars (like specific dice pools and power/condition effects) but it takes many sessions to reach the level of fluidity where you don't have to check the books at all during the actual session.


          Bloodline: The Stygians
          Ordo Dracul Mysteries: Mystery of Smoke, Revised Mystery of Živa
          Mage The Awakening: Spell Quick Reference (single page and landscape for computer screens)

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          • #6
            Sure... why not?

            Also, I know some people are electronic device at the table averse, but please remember that a lot of people out there use assistive tech to help them with their lives, and modern digital life lets them do that without being nearly as intrusive as it used to be. Not everyone's brain and body work the same, and getting all purist about doing everything on paper isn't always a matter of personal taste.

            Comment


            • #7
              Also, a not-flippant answer: If they have resources, yes, I want them to use them at the table. The less I have to look up stuff for them, the happier we all are.


              Sean K.I.W./Kelly R.A. Steele, Freelance Writer(Feel free to call me Sean, Kelly, Arcane, or Arc)
              The world is not beautiful, therefore it is.-Keiichi Sigsawa, Kino's Journey
              Male/neutral pronouns accepted, female pronouns enjoyed.

              Comment


              • #8
                Sure. Most of my games are online, but there few I do have in person I allow them to have books open or the pdf up. I know my players won't be able to retain everything their character can do without looking up the rules, I'm really only expecting to do that myself for vampire.

                Sure, it can backfire with a player getting distracted, but I generally try to not call them out on it seeing as I am in easily distracted groups; I know that doesn't work the best for every group though, so just try a few different methods and see what works.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Yes, it’s better than being asked if each merit adds to their dice pool every combat.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    When I still played at an actual table, I would absolute allow it and even encourage it. But if a player takes too long to look something up during his/her own turn, I will simply say "okay, you know what? This is how I will rule it for now, and we will look up the actual rules after the session, okay?" to get the game back on track. But players looking something up when it's not their turn, so they know what to do when it is their turn, is not only fine, it's actually desirable, because it means less questions for the Storyteller and smoother sessions for everyone involved.

                    These days I only play online, using Discord for voice and Roll20 for everything else. This means I can't for sure know if my players are being distracted by phones, TVs or other things. I just trust my players are invested in my game and paying attention. If I notice they aren't paying attention, I will ask them why not and what needs to happen for them to pay attention again. If they repeatedly don't pay attention and slow the game down that way, I'll give them an official warning and eventually remove them from the game if it keeps happening.

                    ​Why are you asking Graylion ?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The question actually relates to my tag line in my signature.

                      Roleplaying not Rollplaying or Ruleplaying

                      I have played in games everywhere from both ends of the spectrum. One GM was do strict that players could not open books at the table during game. I have played in games where everyone is distracted and some players are studying itemd for the next game different system.

                      Of course this is all actual table games, online is a non-starter. I fall somewhere in between. My biggest rules are Role Playing, be ready, stay in character. For that reason my rule is no books open during your turn, either you know it or you don't, if you don't I will make a call based on what you are trying to do. The game does not stop to look up modifiers, prereq's, or debate mechanics. I provide any cheat sheets and summaries I have and try to be as knowledgeable as I can on the rules. I make exceptions from time to time for new rules or supplements, possible character death, always played a vamp now trying a mage.

                      I find that open books on your turn usually does not lend to the story or role playing. Does it mean sometimes we get it wrong, ya snd we may review any sticking points after the game. It's hard at first but it gets easier.

                      Your milage may vary.

                      Best regards
                      Last edited by Graylion; 04-17-2019, 09:17 PM.



                      Roleplaying not Rollplaying or Ruleplaying
                      Current Focus
                      Storypath & Storypath to Run CoD, VtR, WtF, MtA
                      Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Graylion Do you own all the books your table uses?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I usually own the lions share, but it ranges from some players having none to some having a handful of the major books.

                          Best regards



                          Roleplaying not Rollplaying or Ruleplaying
                          Current Focus
                          Storypath & Storypath to Run CoD, VtR, WtF, MtA
                          Dungeons & Dragons 5th Edition

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Graylion View Post
                            I usually own the lions share, but it ranges from some players having none to some having a handful of the major books.

                            Best regards
                            So People spent their own money on resources to play a game that you now say they cannot use to play said game?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by zee PaTrick View Post
                              So People spent their own money on resources to play a game that you now say they cannot use to play said game?
                              It's their choice to spend money on the books or not if they want to play. I didn't need a copy of Rules Cyclopedia the first time I played D&D and I didn't need Werewolf the Apocalypse when I played that. I didn't need the books at all until I decided to run adventures myself.

                              And considering how fucking expensive the tabletop roleplaying games hobby has gotten, it's not really a surprise that most players don't own all the rulebooks.

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