Page 983 - Passing Notarization

7th Nov 2017, 5:00 AM in The Best Night Ever, Part 1
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Passing Notarization
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 7th Nov 2017, 5:00 AM edit delete
If it gets to the point where your players back up their actions with documents that could be admissible in a court of law, you may have gone too deep.

The "flourishes with my hair" clause was a last-minute addition and now my favorite part. I imagine Rarity being very particular about what a swish means.

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: January 27th, 2023.



Digo Dragon 7th Nov 2017, 5:30 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
This actually brings up an important detail about my D&D group's GM that is hilariously bad--

Our GM hates note taking. When someone gets a fancy non-magical magic item, he will write the abilities/powers on an index card and give it to the player. His standing house-rule is that if you don't have the abilities written down somewhere, then you don't have them. Because he doesn't write them down. Your note card is basically it.

Which tends to lead to the occasional lost non-magical magic item when a player looses an index card somewhere.

But on the other hand, players like me are pretty well organized and translate the index cards to digital files and then print out a list to attach to the character sheet. I've not only not lost an item, but I have screwed the GM's plans a few times because I have powers on some items he didn't remember. Like the longbow I have that grants me the Spring attack feat (don't ask) so I was kiting between two hidden spots on either side of a doorway and never ending my turn IN the doorway. Thus the enemy archers can't hit me and they have to spend two rounds to reach the doorway, where I popped out to surprise them with a sneak attack and jump back into hiding.

And recently he forgot I hired a Battle Accountant to start a business with my followers. But I have the index card he wrote with the NPC's stats. Now I can make money without adventuring. This annoys him greatly when I pass up danger to instead attend business meetings with clients. :3
Felix Magister 7th Nov 2017, 5:51 AM edit delete reply
Couldn't the archers just have readied an action to fire when you left cover?
Tempestfury 7th Nov 2017, 6:28 AM edit delete reply
I thought Spring Attack was Melee only?
Digo Dragon 7th Nov 2017, 8:41 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
On archers and readied actions: Our GM isn't clever with enemy tactics. The enemy archers went after melee PCs and just ignored my slow assault from cover. >.>

On Spring Attack: Correct, Spring Attack is melee only. I even ran that by him to ensure it wasn't an odd typo on his part, but no, he was sure that I can have the feat for this bow.
terrycloth 7th Nov 2017, 10:25 AM edit delete reply
Shot on the Run is the ranged equivalent. I think the only difference is pre-reqs which don't matter since it's granted by an item.
Captain Snark 7th Nov 2017, 9:17 AM edit delete reply
A Battle Accountant?

I'm picturing a nerdy Viking busy calculating how much their recent pillage offsets their initial venture costs while the others are busy celebrating and getting drunk.
Evilbob 7th Nov 2017, 11:19 AM edit delete reply
@Captain Snark: As well as required amount of similar successes that'll be needed in the future to pay down the capitalization costs of long-term/multi-use capital.

And I guess anxiously tacking on expenses on as things get broken in the Viking celebration/drunken brawl around him.
Digo Dragon 7th Nov 2017, 11:37 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Captain Snark and Evibob are not far from the mark at all. :D
Zaftique 7th Nov 2017, 2:32 PM edit delete reply
In our Battlelords of the 23rd Century game, we were running it like Firefly in that we were the crew of a ship just trying to get by in life. I was a Cizerack (huge sentient felinoid) and the ship's accountant. I had an Excel file where I kept track of all our loot and made sure to withhold at least 10% of our total take to save for ship-related things.

The funny part? There's a huge bunch of lists where you can roll to see what your growing up was like (optional, of course, but fun), and turns out I'm colorblind. Which actually worked out to my advantage, because apparently I forgot when creating my character that Cizeracks instantly rage when they see red! No wonder I was such a mild-mannered thing! ;D (Also, we're always in the black, guys... it's so cool.)
█████ 8th Nov 2017, 5:12 AM edit delete reply
I'm reminded strongly of the 'Administrative Specialist'.

Because in a "Might makes Right" style super-powered dictatorship where the gangsters who run the casinos give up a share of their profits to the government, it takes a special type of office drone to make sure their secret account books are accurate.
Anvildude 7th Nov 2017, 4:06 PM edit delete reply
See, I was imagining a nebbishy pinstrip-ed beancounter with weaponized adding machines and a sack of money as a sap.
Sir william 9th Nov 2017, 9:03 AM edit delete reply
Vikings thought that math was witchcraft and made the women do it
Dragonflight 7th Nov 2017, 3:47 PM edit delete reply
All it takes is a single moment of humiliation for the GM to get into the habit of taking notes.

There was a time when I was that kind of GM. I ran stuff largely on the "what feels right" decision making rule. And I made too many decisions over the course of a game where a decision one session was offset by a different decision based on the same situation another time. So one of the players decided to make a point.

He grabbed a USS Enterprise model nearby, and held it up to my head, calling out in Scotty's voice, "Captain! It's one huge contradiction!"

The rest of the group lost it. I didn't take it well at the time, but I've never made the mistake since. Now, I document *everything*, and make sure if I issue a house-rule on something, it's consistent for the rest of the campaign. Better that than the alternative.
Dusk Raven 7th Nov 2017, 11:23 PM edit delete reply
"When someone gets a fancy non-magical magic item, he will write the abilities/powers on an index card and give it to the player. His standing house-rule is that if you don't have the abilities written down somewhere, then you don't have them. Because he doesn't write them down. Your note card is basically it."

...Is it bad that my GM does that with magic items (I'm not sure what "non-magical magic item" means up above), but that we still like and respect him? Granted, I don't think my group has ever actually lost one of the notecards, except maybe when a player left or such...

@Captain Snark and Evilbob: That is a hilarious idea. I especially like the mental image of one of the Battle Accountant's comrades slamming a mug into a table and breaking it, or knocking something off a wall, and the Accountant just sighs and adds another note to his expenses sheet...
Digo Dragon 9th Nov 2017, 5:05 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
A "Non-magic magic item" is what we players call his bizarre nonsensical loot creations. For example, the bow I have which grants me the Spring Attack feat doesn't radiate a magical aura. It's just masterwork. Same with the bear helmet I have--grants me darkvision to 60', and has three non-renewable "charges" like a wand that grant me Rage like a barbarian for 6 rounds, but if you cast detect magic, it doesn't so much as cause a blip on the radar. No magical ability whatsoever.
Dusk Raven 10th Nov 2017, 10:32 AM edit delete reply
That is bizarre. From the sounds of it, if I were a player in that group, I'd eventually want to start DMing because by then I'd have a good idea of what not to do...
Kereea 7th Nov 2017, 6:09 AM edit delete reply
Of COURSE they did. They're the roleplayers of epic proportions. They couldn't resist.
Rastaba 7th Nov 2017, 6:24 AM edit delete reply
Or at least Rarity is. AJ is just paranoid and rightly doesn’t trust the GM, and so likely has plenty of things ready in advance.
Captain Snark 7th Nov 2017, 9:21 AM edit delete reply
I don't know if I'd say AJ is paranoid. So far Spud (yeah, after listening to Fallout is Dragons I can't not hear the GM as Spud now.) has been pretty fair, even willing to go with the players constantly derailing his plans and working around it.

AJ's just crazy prepared. She's practically Batman. Even has the dead parents. (Well unless the recent season's debunked that theory.)
Newbiespud 7th Nov 2017, 9:44 AM edit delete reply
The Perfect Pear was a fantastic episode.
The Old One 7th Nov 2017, 9:52 AM edit delete reply
Hell yeah. Did not expect that to be the Shatner ep.
Thomas Kemp 7th Nov 2017, 2:01 PM edit delete reply
I'm fairly certain that episode CONFIRMED they were dead, with Grand Pear's regret and the "something to remember them by comment", among other things. The Apple siblings wanting to know more about their parents and having to go to others is a bit of a clue.
jdb1984 8th Nov 2017, 9:52 AM edit delete reply
The stars in "Apple Family Reunion" were confirmed by Word of God to represent their parents.
JDB1984 8th Nov 2017, 9:48 AM edit delete reply
Applejack and Rarity have played with RD before, though I'm not sure if all three played in the same campaign.
Guest 7th Nov 2017, 9:14 AM edit delete reply
yeah, when things get to the point where your players have gotten together outside the game to come up with ways to communicate in character and in secret, and have to sign and date things, so you know they aren't pulling a fast one...
you might be one of those GMs who has an adversarial relationship with their players.
Digo Dragon 7th Nov 2017, 11:40 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
The episode these screenshots are taken from reminds me of the weirdness that pony shoes had in the show's early age.

Even though they're four-legged, ponies use their fore-hooves to manipulate things like arms and hands so wearing shoes on those hooves and nothing on their rear hooves is just odd now.
Fhaolan 8th Nov 2017, 7:37 AM edit delete reply
Sorta like a person wearing fancy clothes like a tux or a ballgown, including the gloves... but no shoes. Kinda odd stylistic choice.
Draxynnic 7th Nov 2017, 4:34 PM edit delete reply
One way players can get around the "There's no way you could have organised this in advance" is by numbering the prearranged signals. If one player says "I send prearranged signal #5" and another player immediately knows what that means, then the DM can't claim it wasn't arranged.

The DM might want to know what form the signal takes and force appropriate checks to see if a) the intended recipient notices it or b) anybody ELSE realises a signal is being sent, but they can't claim it wasn't pre-arranged.
Rokas 7th Nov 2017, 5:00 PM edit delete reply
If it gets to the point where your players feel they need to provide you with court-legal documentation, then maaaayyyybe you're a crappy GM.
hariman 7th Nov 2017, 5:34 PM edit delete reply
...I am impressed with Rarity and Applejack's forethought and level of plotting.
Scytale 7th Nov 2017, 8:27 PM edit delete reply
I'm surprised that the GM didn't veto that with one simple, sensible rule: if the GM doesn't know about it, it doesn't exist.

They can't just make things up in private then bring them up whenever it's convenient.
APersonAmI 7th Nov 2017, 11:21 PM edit delete reply
As a GM, I would not forbid this sort of thing becaus I did not know about it.

Because 1: I really enjoy intriuge and spy-stuff in general, so I'd much too pleased to veto and 2: While I'd have *preferred* if they had sent me a copy of those notes or mentioned it in some appropriate way, I wouldn't feel cheated. In addition, 3: She didn't need to call out that that was what she was doing. She could have described her sendind the code, but not explain to the GM what that was about. That's a clear attempt to include the GM in the story, not exclude.
Thor 8th Nov 2017, 12:11 AM edit delete reply
It depends on how your DM runs your game. Many DMs I've played with have a hard time letting their smart bad guys get outplayed. If your DM lest knowledge that he know bleed into a bad guy this is a way to deal with it.
BR549 8th Nov 2017, 2:29 AM edit delete reply
If that's a sensible rule, I never want to play with a sensible GM.

Our GMs (my group runs multiple pbp/chat based games in quasi-intertwined setting, the GM for two is a player in a third where one of the other players GMs) encourage this sort of stuff. The latter, space game has had multiple moments where the GM has had to completely reshuffle his notes and plans because we blindsided him with something*, and he LOVES it when it happens.

* Such as my Jedi Padawan (former space-station urchin**, four-foot-eight and 90 pounds soaking wet with a PEEEENK lightsaber) solving the recently-liberated-warship-AIs*** trying to pick a commander-to-help-them-work-with-organics by suggesting the former infiltration unit was the best choice - and she was the one choice the GM *hadn't* expected us to take.

** Who, due to a quirk of another character's backstory is a reincarnation where her past self is now a Destiny Guardian.

*** Whoever recognises the name "Fleet of Fog", have a cookie.
APersonAmI 7th Nov 2017, 11:29 PM edit delete reply
Awesome. I especially liked "Alas, poor cloak. We hardly knew ye." Great line.

I've actually done something similar in DnD.In that campaign, me and another player were playing as cynical monster hunters fore hire who both had good reasons not to trust humans, and had worked together for some time.

Before the game, in a short in-character skype session between just me and the other monster hunter, the characters ended up developing several code phrases that would come across as idle banter to the uninitiated.

However, we just sent the skype logs to the GM so they'd be on the level, especially since the mini-session had been meant to flesh out our backstories in the first place.
SRP 9th Nov 2017, 8:57 AM edit delete reply
"In that campaign, me and another player were playing as cynical monster hunters fore hire who both had good reasons not to trust humans."

So you were monsters themselves, who were hunters?
APersonAmI 10th Nov 2017, 1:01 AM edit delete reply
Mechanically, we were both humans, but still, not too far off.

While the actual backstory has been lost to time, my friend's character had lost his entire family because someone he trusted had entered into a demonic pact. It didn't do great things for his trust of people, so he took the mercenary gig and took aberration killing gigs for preference to get some roundabout revenge.

My character was the next chief to be of a secret village of former nomads, a native people who was believed to have died out after their territory had slowly been swallowed up by settlers. One they, this final bastion of a dying people was attacked by a monster. The next chief chased it off, but was cursed in the process.

To survive the curse, she would need to leave. But, she lived in a secret village. if she left, she would be dead to her people, and never allowed to come back, for the safety of all who lived there.

My friend's character heard of the injured monsters rampage, and took the job. While chasing it, the characters met, took the monster down together, and eventually decided to work together on future jobs.

So, my character didn't trust people much because everyone she meets is not only an outsider to her, but the reason why her folk are dying out. Wheras my friends character had trouble trusting people because of the way someone he trusted turned on him.

That was actually a pretty fun relationship to roleplay, the cautious outsider and the jaded betrayee.