Probably Bad Episode 19 – The Car Boot Octagon, Flaming Bullshit, and Trope Bashing

With apologies for lateness – the producer had to get a new laptop

Opening music

Mod pencil

Hello and welcome to the probably bad podcast, a podcast which is definitely bad. I’m pencil.

Paper

I’m paper. Today’s probably bad rpg idea is…

(rolls dice)

Create a cosmic level enemy whose attack damages the player not just on a surface level, but on all levels of reality. If an attack hits a character, hit the character’s player in the face IRL. This could go wrong so quickly and i love it.

MOD PENCIL

I’m the one who chose this idea, i’m not suggesting beating the shit out of your players.

PAPER

Yeah, that’s just for physical attacks.

MOD PENCIL

Yeah, i do like the idea of it in some way damages the player irl. I can’t think of a way to do this which isn’t just an excuse to assault your player in some manner or isn’t just LARP.

PAPER

There are ways to damage a player which isn’t thumping them. Have you considered every time they take damage, the player becomes a little more empty inside. Just show them pictures of sad puppies.

MOD PENCIL

Yeah every time you get injured by the monster you have to listen to more of my amateur poetry. I think you could do this in – every time you get hit by the monster cross something out on your character sheet you can’t use that anymore.

PAPER

Just a different way of doing damage i think.

MOD PENCIL

Perhaps. Ok we’re back to decking people.

PAPER

If your character dies you have to do the cinnamon challenge.

MOD PENCIL

This is now just a youtube prank channel. If your character dies you have to say obnoxious things to people while being filmed.

PAPER

I wonder if you can do it for other consequences that characters can have, just sort of like you know there’s certain things that can drain a character’s maximum hitpoints so it’s like well i’m afraid your character has lost half their maximum hp so i’m going to break both your legs.

MOD PENCIL

Every time you’re hit with a hold person spell you have to go into the Gm’s basement and you can’t come out until it wears off.

PAPER

Every time you take damage you have to put on a jumper try to finish the battle before you die of heat stroke.

MOD PENCIL

There’s a train heading towards five people and every time you take damage it goes closer.

PAPER

I thought you were going to turn that into a terrible trolley problem.

MOD PENCIL

It is a trolley problem do you keep playing this terrible d&d game when your gm breaks your legs in order to save five people.

PAPER

I’m not a philosophy expert but i feel like this misses the point of a trolley problem.

MOD PENCIL

I feel like we’ve missed the point of a good rpg session it’s turned into a saw movie.

PAPER

I like saw movies.

MOD PENCIL

The dice are sewn inside someone at the start of the game and you have to get them out.

PAPER

I feel like that’s a lot darker.

MOD PENCIL

It seems like a logical progression. The dice are scattered and connected to a series of bombs around the city… and when you roll…

PAPER

It’s not related but it’s an idea you put in my head. At the start of the game you play hungry, hungry hippos. The number of marbles you get is the number you’re allowed to use in the session.

MOD PENCIL

I like that it’s just completely-

PAPER

It has nothing to do with anytihng.

MOD PENCIL

It’s like twister and when you fall over your character dies, and every time you take damage your player- your gm jabs you with a stick.

PAPER

No i like player – everyone gets to poke you.

MOD PENCIL

Yeah. It’s just i feel it might be easier to just play twister but the point is now you’re playing at the same time and you’re being poked constantly.

PAPER

To be fair though this should be reversed, if you’re in a boss battle and you hit the boss you should get to hit the gm’s nose or something.

MOD PENCIL

I chose this idea and i’m regretting it because this is getting closer and closer to just i’m going to fistfight the gm. You say i’m going to fight – ok fine go to the cage you’ve installed in the game room and beat the shit out of each other.

PAPER

To the octagon!

MOD PENCIL

The other players yell oc-ta-gon as you beat each other. Players can give inspiration by throwing rocks at the gm as the gm fights the player to distract them.

PAPER

Oh they’ve got to be dice.

MOD PENCIL

Hyeah they throw dice at the gm to distract them. As you get to higher levels you get weapons to bring in to fight the gm. At level 1 you have a feather duster and at level 20 you have a shotgun.

PAPER

I’m curious what’s at level 10 what’s the exact midpoint between a feather duster and a shotgun?

MOD PENCIL

A shotgun that fires feather dusters. I guess a sword? the higher the challenge rating the better weapons the gm has as well.

PAPER

Of course. A terask has an AK.

MOD PENCIL

Goblins have a goblin.

PAPER

A goblin weapon is a goblin.

MOD PENCIL

You just swing it by the legs. This goes on…

PAPER

If you can’t access a goblin a 3 year old painted will do just fine.

MOD PENCIL

This feels off brand – you make the game good by painting a 3 year old green bring them into a cage and swing them at someone’s face.

PAPER

As the probably bad podcast I’d argue this is the most on brand we’ve been for some time.

MOD PENCIL

I haven’t slept in quite some time and paper has a migraine so that’s why this episode is going the way it is. And like there’s a whole problem in D&D where even powerful enemies are difficult to fight cause everyone can gang up on them, but it’s represented in the rules cause everyone can gang up on the gM.

PAPER

It’s perfect.

MOD PENCIL

Does it apply to other forms of conflict – if you’re trying to seduce someone do you have to take them to the sexy octagon?

PAPER

The sexy octagon??

MOD PENCIL

Yeah do you have to seduce the GM?

PAPER

Yes.

MOD PENCIL

And the higher charisma the skimpier clothes you get to wear. At 20 you get to be naked.

PAPER

If you’re haggling you and your gm have to both go to a car boot sale and get the best deal.

MOD PENCIL

The car boot octagon.

PAPER

That would be a weird car and i’m into it.

MOD PENCIL

You have imprisoned a man and his car in the car boot octagon for use as a car boot sale. What i’m saying is you create a series of octagons for every possible challenge.

PAPER

Yeah, and we all need something to do during the now times.

MOD PENCIL

To prepare for lockdown finally lifting, dig a series of octagons and fill them with deadly traps to put your friends in when you meet them again.

PAPER

If they don’t wear a mask push them in.

MOD PENCIL

If you don’t wear a mask your character takes a bunch of damage and this is represented by players pinning you down, putting a mask on you and hitting you.

PAPER

Speaking of communal efforts, we have a sponsor for the first time ever and it’s a kickstarter project. The deck of rumours by unlimited realms which is five decks of cards of sort of various events that could be happening or gossip or things like that to serve as jumping off points in your games.

MOD PENCIL

It’s all posters, or messages you can find around town. Like i need someone to teach my son algebra, or things more exciting like that.

PAPER

It ranges from stuff like there’s a new jam shop opening to oh god oh god we’re all going to die of plague.

MOD PENCIL

It is a very good spectrum of tone and scale.

PAPER

And the cards are really well made as well the graphics quality is really good. If that appeals to you follow the link in the episode description. There was going to be an and there, but that’s it follow the lnik and look at the cards and give them money for hte good cards.

MOD PENCIL

If you want to join us in conversation about cards octagon… i don’t know where that sentence went i’m so tired.

PAPER

Shall we just move on to questions?

MOD PENCIL

Questions!

Questions music!

Bread and thread plug.

MOD PENCIL

So our first question is anonymous – stranger things and the games that came after that made the 80s aesthetic big, but which aesthetic would you bring back?

PAPER

This is hard for me i have no aesthetic, they’re all glorious.

MOD PENCIL

Circus rpg.

PAPER

Is that an aesthetic?

MOD PENCIL

Yeah circuses used to be a thing.

PAPER

Only in the sense that things technically used to be a thing right now. They haven’t gone extinct.

MOD PENCIL

Yeah, bring back the aesthetic of actually getting to meet people, that’s the one i’d bring back but what i would actually like to see a game of, and it’s the sort of you don’t see a lot of like bronze age style games it’s usually more recent or medieval, but early city state kind of games. I feel that would be an interesting setting for an RPG.

PAPER

Presumably the big bad is Inacea.

MOD PENCIL

Yes you need to like finally stop him stealing copper – no scamming people into buying copper.

PAPER

Maybe that’s part of the scam, he steals it and sells it on you don’t know his life.

MOD PENCIL

That is true he has been dead for many thousands of years i don’t know his life. but yeah that kind of early technology like everything sort of changing between agriculture, hunter gathering and agriculture there’d definitely be some interesting stories there.

PAPER

Can i be an awful pedant and say high medieval slash early modern but actually instead of how it tends to be in fantasy. I want ridiculously brightly coloured clothes i want men in high heels i want jewellery everywhere i want just stupid amounts of hair.

MOD PENCIL

The aesthetic i want to bring back is actual respect for how history was. Yeah i think…

Paper

failing that, high fantasy flappers would be very fun.

Mod pencil

they would be. high fantasy 20s.

Paper

problem is a lot of the media i consume has the aesthetics i like idk what aesthetics are neglected right now.

Mod pencil

that’s why i just went for circuses. you’ve got fire eaters as the npcs, clowns as the villains it all takes place at the big top.

Paper

it’s certainly an idea.

question music.

Paper

fiona wants to know what the weirdest homebrew is. i did see homebrew stats for this mysterious creature called the bonacon, which is i mean its main defining feature as a creature is sort of whipping its caustic faeces around, it’s kind of a bowl a weird bowl that has poo that sets things on fire.

Mod pencil

sounds like a load of bullcrap to me badum tish.

Paper

it’s such an obscure creature to go yes i want this in my game. but i also went i want this in my game so tried to see if anyone had homebrewed it. so i’m going with the bonacon.

Mod pencil

yes, seems like a coward then throws shit at you. the weirdest homebrew i’ve seen it was a reality warping class that can reshape reality. at level 1 what you can specifically do, is reshape reality from the enemy doesn’t have a sword wound, to a reality where the enemy does have a sword wound and you can do that at touch range by making an attack roll. it’s a matter of time until you realise it’s a fighter who is ridiculously overfluffed, and now it’s aha you can make it so that 2 enemies in front of you have spontaneous sword wounds.

Paper

that’s so wild i’m in love with it.

Mod pencil

i’m going to find it. it was just reality reshapes so that injuries on you are like altered to be less severe because you now have more armour and it’s just every single fighter… going to see if i can find it… every single fighter feature but it’s all fluffed as you reshape reality itself.

Paper

that is beautiful.

Mod pencil

i haven’t found many kink homebrews i always thought there would be more.

Paper

i can’t say i’ve gone looking for them, but i’ve read the book of erotic fantasy and incorporated it into my D&D stuff.

Mod pencil

all i can remember of it is that it has the thing that makes you ejaculate spiders.

Paper

that is a pretty weird homebrew on its own.

Mod pencil

is it homebrew if it’s in an official thingamyjig?

Paper

that’s fair. but some people have made it into homebrew for 5e, cause different edition. i think it gets honorable mention.

Mod pencil

i like homebrew, and there’s surprisingly little stuff that makes you think that’s just someone’s kink.

Paper

maybe the kinks are just too obscure for you to realise that it’s a kink.

Mod pencil

maybe all of this is someone’s kink.

Paper

maybe boncon is someone’s fursona.

Mod pencil

oh i’m a cool wolf or a sexy cat, no i’m a cow that shits everywhere and burns the building down. i guess it’s important to represent who you are.

Paper

i do just want to clarify for any furry listeners i do want to clarify i don’t think furry is exclusively a kink thing. it’s just a thought that entered into my brain.

Mod pencil

people are excessively mean to furries and furries should be allowed to wear fursuits. that’s the moral of this episode if you were wondering. furries should be allowed to wear fursuits and beat up your GM.

question music.

Paper

we do have another question if we have time… archetypal archivist probably one of my favourite names from a question asker, asks what are your 5 least favourite tropes and story pieces that pop up in a lot of D&D games. my number one is definitely horny bards. a lot of people see charismatic and think oh they flirt with everyone. when it’s at the point it’s a meme.

Mod pencil

my least favourite… is a bit less specific than horny bards, but in a lot of stories the villain shows up and says i was behind everything all along, which works reasonably well as like media where you’re reading someone else’s adventures but it seems weird when you’re the player and you hear haha it’s all been part of the evil villain’s scheme all along.

Paper

yeah i get that, there’s a fun to be had slowly realising that rather than being told it at the end is not satisfying.

Mod pencil

i think babababaa this bit should probably be edited out as i remember what words are… i also don’t like ones where the monster sits on a huge pile of treasure waiting to be stabbed. i’m not a huge fan of dungeon crawls in general, they’re just there’s only so many times you can stab dragon. actually, fuck, i don’t like combat in D&D in my controversial opinion.

Paper

i see what you mean with dungeons, why would someone build this. they’re not real places. it feels like the dungeons and dragons movie – you want treasure we’re going to push you into here now.

Mod pencil

it doesn’t feel like a place that’s inhabited, a place that’s got an ecosystem. i’m not expecting you to sit down and say make me food, but what does the manticore eat? it’s just there in a stone room.

Paper

also like yeah what was this space, cause if you’ve got a space that’s just got caves and there’s a nothick in the middle, how did it get there, explain.

Mod pencil

i want to run a campaign where you’re a bunch of monsters and you’ve got to escape this underground maze you inexplicably live in. there you go, that’s my reasoning for why i hate the premise of dungeons and dragons, join us next time for why dragons suck.

Paper

that’s number 3, can number 4 be i’m a loner i have no connections i’m a loner who wanders the land… number one that’s just going to be a murderhobo unless you have a very good reason to not have those connections but you’re still going to have some sort of connection even if it’s to a place, not a person.

Mod pencil

if you have no connections to anything there’s no reason for them to be on an adventure.

Paper

yeah because if you actually had no connection to anything or anywhere or anyone, despite the fact the character has quite severe depression, what reason do you have to go on an adventure?

Mod pencil

i’ve had to GM characters like that and it’s very hard to motivate characters whose motivation is i don’t care about any of this and i don’t want to do this.

Paper

cause it’s not a motivation it’s an anti-motivation.

Mod pencil

their motivation is they have no motivations.

Paper

put that character in therapy and make a more interesting character.

Mod pencil

ok, so we have one more… yeah i probably shouldn’t say the entire combat system, partly cause it’s not a trope.

Paper

i get what you mean there are issues with… there are issues with any combat system, cause there’s no way you can make it realistic while also being codified.

Mod pencil

yeah which is why all rpgs should be pacifistic.

Paper

a bold stance.

Mod pencil

combat should not be- rpg combat should be a lot more abstract, but that’s not the question we’re asking so-

Paper

i can’t think of a 5th one.

Mod pencil

the 5th one i don’t like is the fact that all elves and dwarves are essentially identical. i don’t like fantasy worlds that are like here are the dwarves and you already know everything about dwarves. i don’t like how out of the box a lot of fantasy settings are and how interchangeable a lot of them are. i feel like cause obviously there’s some reasons to like, our dwarves live in the sky with the birds, but you need at least one interesting thing about them, at least make it they all have wacky hats or something.

Paper

it’s kind of dragon age origins of all things says it best you can’t sum up an entire species in a sentence. i can’t remember the exact phrase but it’s probably setting specific. it’s just you can’t be like the dwarves live underground and the elves live in the trees and that’s their traits.

Mod pencil

all the dwarves are miners and they swear and drink and that’s the dwarves.

Paper

it’s uninteresting and lazy.

Mod pencil

there definitely need ot be more d&d fantasy settings that aren’t medieval england and there’s an elf.

Paper

fantasy settings generally that’s not just D&D.

Mod pencil

i don’t like how standardised fantasy settings have become.

Paper

there are some very very good ones, and i’ve read very good ones. but i don’t like how many go tolkien is the canon, if every species doesn’t act like it does in LOTR it isn’t high fantasy. and those are books i put down and walk away.

Mod pencil

yeah, we complained about things.

Paper

this episode is going to be a little bit long because of the complaining, but we hope we answered the question.

Mod pencil

i hope we at least answered a question even if it’s not one anyone asked. thank you for listening to our podcast.

Paper

if you enjoyed it you can go to patreon.com/probablybadrpgideas and you can get homebrew and bonus episodes. i’m very excited for the next bonus episode we’re going to play a one page system i came up with called night at the ninja museum. so chuck us some money if you want to hear that. if you have a question you can send it to us at probablybadpodcast@gmail.com and…

both

remember to have a probably bad day.

closing music.

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