Probably Bad 32: Identity Theft, Stealth Trebuchet, and Spider Pictionary

Hello tabletop tim here your one and only source for probably bad news. There’s no other. Never was. Thanks be to our patrons Hedwig and Carlo goodbye for now

pencil

welcome to the probably bad podcast a podcast which is definitely bad I’m pencil

paper

and I’m paper and we have our first ever guest, tal mineer, creator of sidequesting

tal

hi, that’s me, very excited to be here.

paper

and today’s probably bad RPG idea is world of darkness campaign where you never encounter anything supernatural sure the vampire conspiracies, and werewolf armies are out there, the gm reassures you but this campaign is focused on the DMV

pencil

I feel like in world of darkness and horror in general, it’s really easy to foget there is a mundane world in it it’s really easy to forget there are other things than vampires & that’s when you get the idea of throwing something mundane into your game and if eel like that’s just taking it to its natural conclusion only mundane stuff in your game supernatural keeps its excitement when it appears by never appearing

paper

I do feel like things like being a vampire would involve a lot of admin at a certain point you need to establish a new identity and that’s going to be a lot of paperwok

TAL

depends on how you define supernatural like what if, what if your party is a bunch of vampires and you’e all just at the DMV trying to get drivers licence for your new identity like is it supernatural If you are technically like a supernatural being, but never doing anything cool or what

pencil

I do love the idea of your characters are recently turned into vampires and the entire plot is just dealing with life. The pragmatic everyday things like arranging to only work at night with my boss and so forth no exciting things happen.

paper

Especially for an old vampire. What if you were born before like NHS numbers or Social Security numbers you need to get one, you need a national insurance number to get a job and you need an income at some point you have to work out how to get one

tal

maybe that campaign is you just trying to convince people good at forging documents to make you the new documents so just bribery or threats,

pencil

this is getting to like a crime. Crime RPG which is just standard heist, but one person is a vampire you got the muscle you got the stealth you vampire roles like that.

tal

Really fun

pencil

I can imagine a vampire running a heist where all the different roles are filled by different supernatural creatures,

vampire, werewolf wizard fairy and a ghost have to break into a bank

paper

in order to get the money to file the paperwork to get drivers licenses

tal

yes

pencil

have to break DMV to steal drives licences which, I’m like 90% sure are just in a big box

paper

make it harder you’re not stealing the licences you’re stealing the equipment to make the licences cause where do you get a laminator in this day and age

tal

just steal the DMV, the entire building

paper

take the DMV and push it somewhere else

pencil

this plan doesn’t actually solve your problem. Anyway, still have a drivers license or you have is just a building

tal

who needs a drivers license when you can have the DMV itself.

paper

Now that the buildings missing you can take your time breaking in.

pencil

how dare You suggest I don’t have a drivers license if I didn’t have a driver’s license how could I have the entire DMV in my back garden.

paper

This is where drivers licenses are born

pencil

I’ll have as many drivers licenses as I like

tal

I feel like that the issue is, even if you move the DMV somewhere else people who are desperate to get their own drives license and whatever are going to find the location of the new DMV and will go find you

pencil

This is my second campaign, which is where you play monster hunters were trying to track down vampires who stole the DMV to get drivers licenses.

paper

But if you to get the drivers licenses themselves. The issue of trying to get a job without ID by stealing the job vampires coming over here and stealing our jobs

tal

that’s the vampire conspiracy become the vampire, and you steal the DMV and the DMV is just allegedly run by vampires

pencil

it’s increasingly abstract and metaphorical shots going to break into the rich guy’s house and steal their memories of childhood or something

paper

if you think about it is identity theft itself not a kind of weird ethereal crime sounds like something fae would do

tal

if you were fae running the DMV you could steal a lot of identities

pencil

a lot of people’s true names if you were working at the DMV. That’s quite a good plot hook for a supernatural setting

tal

your campaign is focused on the DMV that might not be anything supernatural at first, but that lovely clerk may be hiding something

pencil

potentially like legitimately intriguing campaign idea around the DMV

paper

normally takes a lot longer to get to a good campaign

pencil

you’re too good at this.

tal

I just think I just think the DMV. It’s really fascinating as a concept a kind of ethereal place like you just get when you sit there for hours and leave with maybe a drivers licence if you had all the right paperwork

pencil

you don’t remember any of the time in between when you sit sitdown and get your license and no memories of the last few hours

paper

The DMV concept intrigues me because we don’t have one.

pencil

I’m aware of it only through sitcoms which is probably the best knowledge base for a long discussion

paper

I literally know it from the simpsons

pencil

All I know is you queued for a lot and then someone might take two forms and then you get given a drivers licence and also a fairy steals your name

tal

basically what it’s like a lot of waiting in between you get in have someone check your forms to make sure you have the right forms and ten more waiting and then they check your forms and then you do more waiting then you get the thing you need and go home

paper

from what you say there are multiple opportunities for vampire to take you aside for a quick chat about your forms and drink you dry.

tal

Absolutely

pencil

there was a horror short story that was like can I steal a few hours of your time? Yes And then you put the phone down and feel a few hours older. There’s definitely something

something here of just going to slowly absorb your lifespan, and you’re going to assume it’s a normal part of going to the DMV. going back to the fairies running the DMV.

paper

Yeah it goes beyond being a liminal space. It is being actual fairyland, thinking you’ve only queued for three hours, but you are there all day.

pencil

Just just love the idea of Alice in Wonderland, which goes down the rabbithole and she’s just in-line at the dmv the really anticlimactic magical world travelling:

paper

Or a narnia thing when you queue for hours to get your licence, you come out. It’s a minute later and you still don’t have it.

tal

That would be a nightmare

pencil

aslan is just an asshole

paper

Aslan is just one of the supernatural creatures that works in the DMV

tal

can you imagine if there was just a lion behind the front desk

pencil

I honestly don’t know actually if I went into a bureaucracy and saw a lion I’d think the lion can sort it out he’s jesus.

paper

the lion being Jesus would definitely throw me but just a lion in general I’m not sure cause I work in museums sometimes you go into a room and there’s Just like a stuffed fox making a vicious face

pencil

we’ve got a legitimate idea. like idea is to stop Aslan from seeing your identity

tal

Aslan would be pretty good at identity theft. You’d tell a lion anything

paper

they’re just inherently trustworthy creatures.

pencil

Every day I go to the zoo whisper my darkest personal secrets to lions and hope they don’t betray me. There podcast over

tal

I just wish I had my own local zoo to whisper my own secrets to the Lions. There is an aquarium, I could whisper to the jellyfish

paper

do they have lionfish

tal

they have catfish kinda close

pencil

cats are just small lions, like so yeah, we got a good idea which used to make this idea work – go to the zoo and whisper to the lions

tal

and they’ll tell you how to run your campaign

pencil

lions famously natures GMs

paper

that’s why they’re called the king of the jungle they go in and they organise everything very hands-on

pencil

just imagine a lion Gming for the animals, walking in and he just turns and goes excuse me, you’re interrupting and goes back to Gming for snake and a monkey.

tal

I would apologise so fast, sorry to disturb you

pencil

sorry I didn’t realise there was a game on.

paper

.The social anxiety idc if it’s a lion idc I must apologise.

pencil

I think this is the furthest we’ve gone from the original idea. Possibly a in the whole podcast.

tal

A new record

pencil

Should we go to questions?

paper

We should go to some questions I think we should first and I should say that we have a patreon server on probably bad RPG ideas with access to bonus episodes and homebrew and the server where we play one shots,

music

paper

I did it, I said it the first question is from Ask Jolly Roger after making a suggestion to put the mouse folk in the bag of holding temporarily for stealth purposes I am haunted by the jokes following. It how do I get my party to stop wrong answers only. I love when people say wrong answers only like they don’t know what podcast this is have we ever done a right answer

pencil

I don’t see anything wrong with the lion gm answer. Just put you party in the bag of holding problem solved

paper

have you considered making worse suggestions.

tal

I have a bad idea for this, it’s not good. IF you make something really terrible happen in regards to this bag holding the mousefolk so that everyone is too traumatised to make jokes about it. I don’t know what terrible thing. This would be

pencil

what if I put the bag of holding inside the mousefolk

paper

that is a very on band suggestion tell because you just suggesting give your party PTSD.

tal

I mean it’s happened before. It’s not a good idea, you probably shouldn’t give your party PTSD, in any form but.

pencil

Most player characters come with trauma built in. If you just if you just take a bag of holding and take what’s it called, portable hole put them both in the mousefolk that should do it

paper

have you considered instead of putting the mousefolk in the bag holding the person you’re trying to sneak past in the bag holding

pencil

can’t see you if you’re in the bag of holding

paper

and if you just tip them out somewhere else and they’ll be so disoriented that they will not remember that you’ve sneaked past

pencil

have you considered just throwing the mousefolk.

Tal

yeet

paper

What size it is a mouse folk because it’s not something I’ve encountered and I’m just imagining like an actual mouse size just put in a slingshot

pencil

I was just imagining redwall style tiny people. 3 foot tall Apparently

paper

so not slingshot but probably use like a Manganel or Trebuchet.

tal

ah yes, the stealth trebuchet,

paper

what you do as a painter in like splotches of green and yellow so it blends,

pencil

then so my reasoning is, no one will notice I’m here cause they’re all busy going oh my god there’s rocks smashing building from a trebuchet.

paper

But One of the rocks is secretly a mouse folk who then climbs over the rubble

pencil

Technically all stealth missions are a success if you level the building beforehand

tal

or after you got options

paper

and you can also hide behind the trebuchet so they won’t see your faces and then it count as stealth because they don’t know it was you

pencil

looking for the druid but all I can see is this large, bright green trebuchet

paper

cast invisibility on the bag of holding,

pencil

not the mouse folk

paper

and then put the building in

tal

how big is the opening to the back of holding such that you can fit a building in it

paper

you may have to deconstruct the building first

tal

Yeah levelling it

pencil

level the building with the trebuchet, put the rubble in the bag. I don’t know what this accomplishes, I just realised it doesn’t help in any way, it’s just a bag of rubble.

paper

people will stop talking about you wanting to put the mousefolk in the bag of holding which I think was the original question.

tal

I guess if you just do something incredibly ridiculous to make jokes about they’ll make jokes about that

pencil

you do something more embarrassing then they’ll stop talking about the previous embarrassing thing

paper

no one talks about O.J. Simpson -like fumbling a catch

pencil

murdering someone with the bag of holding

paper

I imagine it’s quite easy to murder someone with the bag of holding

pencil

I imagine the bag of holding doesn’t change when you put stuff in it, so it would be quite difficult I can imagine.

Paper

I was thinking more like there’s no air in there or you could keep all sorts of weapons

in it. I think a bag of holding’s a very useful murder weapon or at least accessory.

Pencil

murder accessory is what all the cool assassins are wearing.

Paper

you have to get a black one though to fit the look.

Tal

what we’re saying is if we put the mousefolk in the bag of holding, even if it’s temporary they might die.

Pencil

there is no air in there, it probably won’t go well for the mouse folk.

Paper

they didn’t say they had to – they were going to put them all the way ihn

tal

oh just a ltitle bit with their face sticking out?

Paper

just a little pocket friend

pencil

is this done just so you’ll have a little mousefriend in your pocket?

Tal

that’s so cute.

Pencil

that’s adorable, it’s a shame we’ll have to put it in the stealth trebuchet and launch it at a building.

hazel

hi I’m hazel and I make a podcast called bread and thread, which you might enjoy if you are a fan of food or clothes or other parts of domestic history we find out interesting facts about things like regional foods, ancient breeds of sheep and pretty much anything domestic history. If you’d like to know, why it’s illegal to import sheep into Iceland and what was presented by Queen Victoria to Harriet Tubman, then listen to bread and bread, find us on twitter at breadandthread, and find us anywhere podcasts exist

paper

From rocket, the druid I player often wildshapes into a spider when stealthy reconnaissance is needed. But seeing as spiders can’t talk it’s hard to communicate what they found, without turning back to normal and burning a use of wild shape. How should I communicate with the other party members without leaving spider form,

have you read Charlotte’s Web?, just make a web that incorporates the words he will want to say like just on the outside of the bad guys hideout put up a spiderweb that says knives and then they’ll know they got knives.

tal

Or just make a picture of a knife

pencil

Spider Pictionary.

tal

Spider pictionary, Yes,

paper

basically the plot of Charlottes’ web

tal

you are right and you should say it,

pencil

my suggestion is just, don’t just be a chaotic Spider no one knows what you’re doing and why you’re doing it you

paper

as a spider you’re small and you can run away from the dangerous situation.

Tal

if your party sees you running in the opposite direction they can go oh, Maybe it is bad to go forward,

pencil

half transform into a spider so you’re a giant spider with a human face

tal

that is terrifying

paper

like an animorphs cover

pencil

yeah, like ok so going back to the stealth thing I’m gonna just use recon, because you probably cut it out but all my previous attempts to say it ended up renaissance cause that’s the only word my brain can parse… um but it would help with the recon if all of you turn into partially wild shape so you look like animorphs covers, so noone will look at you long enough to see that you’re in the building, they’ll see you and be like we’ll just block that one out and they’ll leave. This pairs really well with stealth trebuchet.

Paper

wild shape into a mouse hide in a bag…

tal

get into your trebuchet and … ??? …. profit!

Pencil

have you considered all the other players turn into spiders.

Tal

just a whole pack of spiders? That’s terrifying.

Paper

what if you used morse code and just used your mandibles to tap out a message. It would be really quiet so you’ll probably have to climb onto someone’s ear to do it but you could do it.

Pencil

I was assuming giant spider but it’s just a spider.

Tal

you could take up interpretive spider dance

pencil

I was going to suggest interepretive dance.

Tal

yeah it’s what bees do.

Paper

yes spider waggle dance.

Pencil

presumably you need to train your spider dance as a spider which means you’ll have to spend your downtime turning into a spider and dancing. Which I think is a nice way to spend your time.

Tal

a good hobby.

Paper

you might need to build up you performance skill.

Tal

when your party needs some extra money and you’re in a city, it can be like look at our dancing spider, and collect money that way.

Pencil

something weirdly cuel to have your druid get money by turning into an animal, I don’t know what, but it’s cruel

paper

it’s less cruel than a flea circus, an actual thing that exists.

Pencil

I think we-

paper

I think if jurassic park’s anything to go by, if you make enough money by your spider dancing you can bring back dinosaurs.

Tal

that would help with you stealthy reconnaissance

paper

it’s something to do afterwards, or possibly instead

pencil

we’re going to launch a t-rex at this building by a trebuchet, but stealthy, rolled a natural 20 on my stealth, see if they noticed.

Paper

what is the stealthiest dinosaur

pencil

probably one of the little ones. Compsagus o whatever

tal

pterodactyl

paper

yeah I was thinking one of the flying ones like a quetzacoatalus or something.

Pencil

I was thinking brontosaurus.

Paper

explain.

Pencil

people think it’s part of the scenery cause it’s really big, it’s a novelty building.

Paper

do you just paint trees on it

pencil

yeah it’’s like people look and go is that a brontosaurus, no we’d know if it was a brontosaurus it’s clearly just like that’s what a supermarket looks like these days.

Tal

you have me convinced.

Pencil

yeah, we ride our stealth brontosaurus. It’s the opposite of microscopic it’s macroscopic, it’s too big to see.

Tal

what if you just become a really really big spider, idk if that helps in any form, for communication but

paperwork

it would be easier to hear the mandible morse code but it’s also less stealthy

pencil

if you become a big enough spider they can see your face move and then you communicate with facial expressions. Full disclosure I don’t know anything about spider faces but I assume it’s a human face but on a spider.

Paper

now I’m imagining a spider doing mime. You stand up on the back four legs and do the front four legs act out what the danger is.

Tal

spider charades.

Pencil

it’s deepndent on the enemy’s plan to revolve around a film, a book or tv show.

Paper

you can compare it, f they’re planning to ssteal some bearer bonds you do die hard.

Pencil

the spider can only communicate via reference to another 80s action movie and you have to figure out the details.

Paper

only 80s ones nothing from 1990.

pencil

spiders didn’t watch movies back in that time period.

Music

pencil

now we’ve failed to answer your question in any way, our final question is from squishy – how do I get my 55 year old mum to play D&D?

Paper

I’m going to hang back on this one because this is my sister, therefore her mum is my mum and I know how these suggestions get.

Pencil

I say eat her.

Tal

eat the mother.

Paper

do not consume my mother.

Pencil

I am contractually obligated to say eat someone at least once an episode. So the issue is Idk much about your mum.

Paper

basic facts about my mum, she likes action films, and heavy metal, and is actually 56 if that makes a difference.

Pencil

getting rid of all my 55 related ideas.

Tal

cross them off the list.

Pencil

if she likes action films has she considered this spider who charades die hard?

Tal

you just need to introduce a spider from the get-go who’s a little bigger, really great at charades, and is an action movie hero.

Pencil

in every scene the spider gets a little bit bigger and a little bit more like john mcclane.

Paper

are you suggesting this is a helper NPC or just my mum’s character?

Pencil

this isn’t an NPC it’s just in the room as you play D&D.

Paper

ok, it’s not an NPC it’s just in the room. It’s a spider who has gained sentience and is just in the game now.

Tal

part of the party

pencil

yeah this can be your mum’s PC. Othe suggestionns, gunpoint, bribery, how committed are you to your mum not being shot by your sister?

Paper

100%

pencil

that’s going to hamper things.

Tal

what about asking nicely? Just sit down and play a game of D&D?

Pencil

have you considered communication?

Tal

is this on the table?

Pencil

I’m going to veto talking about it like mature adults, so let’s get back to the spider related plans. Bribe her with spiders.

Tal

that’s not a good bribe. If someone bribed me with spiders I would run away.

Pencil

it’s great it works as a bribe or a threat depending on her reaction.

Paper

I honestly don’t know how my mum feels about spiders.

Pencil

you’re gonna find out apparently

paper

I never had a problem with them so I just took them outside myself

pencil

I’m the only member of my family who’s not arachnophobic and that’s how the podcast got to this point.

Paper

it just escalates.

Pencil

yes, so other ways to threaten paper’s mother, I feel the problem is the actual answer si ask her if she’d like to play D&D but that’s not a particularly good punchline

tal

you could get an action movie she really likes and make that the plot of the game. Like you know, like people making a film into a campaign and not telling the players, and she goes oh this is cool, and you’ve got her.

Pencil

invite around the actual metallica to guest star. Idk many metal bands.

Tal

I also don’t.

Pencil

I know metallica is a thing. Just have them show up I’m sure they don’t have anything better to do with their time cause they’re metallica.

Paper

where can they go right now?

Pencil

your mum’s house.

Paper

I don’t like how you said that. She’s a married woman.

Pencil

to play metal music. Idk what other connotations anyone could have had. Yeah, so as a child of the person who is being suggested for an rpg how effective do you think these suggestions will be paper

paper

I feel like she’d be very impressed if either of her children had the clout to get metallica to go to her house.

Pencil

if we get a few more patrons.

Paper

other than that I think it might have to be the threat of spiders.

Tal

very efficient threat.

Pencil

to be fair we did give an actual answer to that, the answer was throw spiders at your mother, as opposed to ‘what if aslan owned the dmv’. So yes, slightly more off topic thing, Tal, would you like to say something about your podcasty thing?

Tal

I can do that.

Pencil

yes, let me get back into saying things to people voice, and yes, on that note we should probably stop talking before we produce any more crimes against humanity and common decency.

Paperp

and my mother.

Pencil

and your mother. Badabadabadaba… there was going to be a sentence there.

Paperp

I believe in you!

Pencil

it’s 3 minutes before the podcast ends and I forget how to use english. Paper introduce tal.

Paper

we’re going to wrap up there before… idk my mum will hear my sister listening to this episode but I doubt she’d approve

pencil

hello paper’s mum!

Paper

tal do you want to explain what sidequesting is before we wrap up?

Tal

sure sidequesting is a fantasy podcast about avoiding the main plot, it follows a character who will do anything as long as it’s not fighting the big scary wizard, and I’m also forgetting how to words and that’s great, it follows a main character who will do anything as long as it’s not the main plot and it has a lot of fun very queer shenanigans and it’s my comfort show to make and I like it a lot.

Paper

I enjoy listening to it.

Pencil

it is a good show.

Tal

aaw thank you.

Pencil

If I hated it it would be very awkward at this point of the guest thing.

Tal

some people want high stakes in their audio fiction shows. Not me.

Pencil

it’s a very calm and comforting podcast.

Paper

if you have a question you can send it to probablybadrpgideas on tumblr o you can email yes I can remember our email…

tal

probablybadpodcast@gmail.com!

Paper

thank you! Remember to listen to sidequesting and remember to have a probably bad day!

Closing music

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