How To Deal with Hack & Slash and Plot-Breaking Character Powers

Roleplaying Suggestions Publication #1157

Dia Dhuit Johnn,

How will you make journey and exploration extra fascinating?

And what can we do about gamers who wish to kill all the pieces and ignore roleplay?

I’ll share a few recommendations on these matters, triggered by latest emails, with you immediately.

Too Hack & Slash Targeted

Roleplaying Suggestions GM JG emailed me yesterday:

Lately, I used to be operating a marketing campaign. It’s been largely superb for me and the gamers.

Nonetheless, this one session just a few weeks in the past, I simply couldn’t anymore. The gamers see one thing and immediately assault. [We] slog by means of a struggle and I’m making an attempt to have them study one thing vital.

So I attempt once more otherwise. Nope. Hack and slash.


My response:

Hey JG!

For a bunch that loved to kill stuff and communicate with lifeless later, I requested them why they attacked all the pieces in sight.

They stated:

  1. Monsters give them XP
  2. D&D is all about fight
  3. Fight is enjoyable

For #1 I switched to milestone XP and noticed an enchancment.

For #2, touché.

For #3 I requested why.

Solutions I obtained:

  1. Rolling cube is enjoyable
  2. It’s tangible (counting well being, enjoying with minis, utilizing a battlemap)
  3. It’s simple and clear what to do

For #3.1 I added extra cube challenges to different encounter sorts.

For #3.2 I made roleplay encounters extra tangible through maps, minis, and higher descriptions.

For #3.3 I helped present readability main as much as roleplay encounters in regards to the gamers’ choices.

One other massive win for me was Fight Missions. After just a few of these, gamers received used to the thought of early “outs” or other ways to finish fight with out dragging it out to the final hit level.

These steps helped rather a lot. Perhaps some could be of assist to you?

Higher Travels

RPT GM Teagan P. emailed me this final Friday:

One factor I discover about my video games is that a number of focus will get placed on fight (so it actually needs to be nice), whereas the supposed different 2 pillars of the [D&D] recreation, social and exploration, really feel like “issues between fight.”

I’d like to see a tip sooner or later on higher integrating them with equal highlight, particularly exploration, which has all the time felt just like the vacancy between stuff taking place.

Moreover, I’ve been scuffling with retaining it current at excessive ranges, when the get together can teleport almost wherever virtually at their whim.

Simply one thing I’d love to listen to your ideas on sooner or later.

Thanks for the tip request Teagan.


I really feel exploration is about discovery.

It’s thrilling to study or expertise one thing for the primary time. And if discovery comes with a reward payload, your desk would possibly overlook all about fight. 🙂

One thing I realized from a former GM, Django, was construct issues up earlier than a battle encounter.

Say you’ve received a creature in its cave lair.

What mark would such a creature go away on the countryside? A dearth of ungulates? Ordure swarming with parasites, vermin, and illness? Terrified locals with imaginations operating wild?

After which the get together finds the cave. What portents there? Useless pores and skin or damaged scales? Deep gouges raked into stone partitions? A pile of carcasses with no skins or eyeballs?

You eke these particulars out because the get together attracts nearer in the course of the exploration section.

Every discovery offers clues to the creature’s identification and qualities.

Layer these discoveries into roleplay and journey encounters that typically want a lift.

By sowing particulars in exploration and social encounters earlier than the climactic monster encounter and fight, you construct up rigidity, present extra cool stuff for gamers to find and fret about, and provides particulars to assist gamers get tactical in the event that they select.


With reference to plot-breaking qualities of the get together, like a teleport capability, there should be a motive in your journey plotline why the characters can’t waltz up and clear up the issue.

If I recall accurately, teleport has threat. And not using a first-person sighting of the vacation spot, the chances of teleporting safely worsen.

So I’d use this in my 5 Room Dungeon or journey construction.

For instance, the The place is the final element the gamers ought to discover.

Or as soon as location is revealed, the gamers study horrible defenses or threats they need to now get extra sources to beat earlier than teleporting in. I hope this helps!

Focus on these recreation grasp suggestions on this thread on the official Roleplaying Suggestions group discussion board.?


Latest articles

Related articles

Leave a reply

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here