View Full Version : Is a GM vital?

New Cult King
14-05-2009, 03:01
Since I'm sick of paying GW's prices for little lumps of plastic, I've decided to try and do something with all the little lumps I already have. Scouting through my collection, I could quite easily come up with two Inquisitor warbands in 28mm scale, and I have plenty of industrial-style terrain.

What I don't have is enough people to play against AND have a GM at the same time.

So is Inq playable with just two players and no GM?

14-05-2009, 03:11
Sure, if they are reasonable people that won't argue. After all a lot of the story is determined by the GM/players and you are competing against each other in a way so it sort of becomes in your interest not to allow some things even if the story would be cool with it. If people can deliberately allow their models a disadvantage in the game to benefit the story then it should be fine.

The other way of doing it is to have two story lines, one for each of your warbands. Have the other person play GM with NPCs etc. Effectively like space hulk where you alternated between being the stealer player and the terminator player.

That way neither of you are left out.


14-05-2009, 10:37
A GM is far from vital as long as you both approach the game as a mutual effort towards and exciting conclusion (be it in your characters' favour or not). I've actually tried to play down the GM's role somewhat in INQ2, although there are still advantages to having one.

It's a bit like 40K:Apocalypse, because it's hard to predict how all the rules will interact or where an unbiased opinion may be required over a matter that can't be solved with a simple D6 roll.

Bear in mind, though, that you can also play exciting games of one player versus a GM, in which the GM controls NPCs and unexpected events in a confrontation scenario.


New Cult King
16-05-2009, 11:02
Awesome, cheers guys :D The player vs GM/NPC idea is very cool.

20-05-2009, 17:03
Has anyone thought of creating a "Choose Your Own Adventure" type module that they submit (and others would too). Then, other users can download them, play them out, and rate them. The reason why I say others, is that the ones playing them won't know what's happening until they are at that point (so can't know what choices to make)
Some elements can be random and selected by dice, others will be determined by the choices of the player(s).
Set up for something like this

Character stats for NPCs
Numbered paragraphs for each section. These would be a written out narrative of what's happening, who's there in the scene and what choices they can make, each choice going to another numbered paragraph.

Only drawback to this is that it can be somewhat limiting by having prearranged choices, but, if it has a bit of playtesting first, then it gets "published" to a finalized draft thread, it could work out well and let others test out warbands.

Discy Mk II
30-05-2009, 11:13
I have been considering playing Inquisitor solo for a while actually( no one out here plays it), with NPCs that carry out instruction written down pre-game...
Hmmm, lot more work to do...

30-05-2009, 12:10
@Puuka - This is sort of how the Inquisitor: Conspiracies books worked. They never really stood up to scrutiny as Inquisitor campaigns, though, as they required a great deal too much custom terrain and NPCs (one scenario, I recall, described a long dining table; another required a dozen naked NPCs writhing on the floor*).

The other way of approaching this sort of campaign is to make it up on the fly: you have a starting scenario and a "big picture" approach to the plot then you make up the next scenario based on the outcome of the previous scenario. So if one game ends with a captured character, the PCs must make the decision whether to attempt to rescue their ally or to let him rot and proceed with the mission (or any number of other possible decisions).

The drawback with this approach, as I have discovered, is that a great deal of action takes place between scenarios, deciding where the ally is being held, for example, and how you go about rescuing him and what might have happened to other events in the mission while time's a-wasting. This approach is absolutely fine with a small circle of players - perhaps three with one GM - who all subscribe to play one adventure out over a several weeks or months.

I tend to advise looking for one-day campaigns, however, that can be tied up in five or six hours' play. This generally means that you have the same people playing the same games in what is invariably an intense, exciting experience that can then be repeated with a new campaign on a new date.

The other option is simple pick-up games that play out a fairly generic mission which players can then fit into the narratives of their characters at their discretion. These are the easiest to play, but do sometimes require a degree of mental gymnastics at the outset.

For campaign settings and hooks, one-day campaigns and hints and tips on shoehorning pick-up games into a character narrative, check out the first three issues of Dark Magenta (http://www.darkmagenta.co.uk).


09-07-2009, 03:53
From experience I have found that at least one character has to pick up the role of the plot driver, AKA the GM. Without a GM the game can quickly turn into two or more authors trying to write the same story their own ways.

Which player provides the twist? Which player determines when/where/how/why additional characters may arrive? Who determines when to unleash the "deus ex machina" (god machine) to level the playing field, or fudge the rules for the stories betterment.
You need someone to drive the story even if it is one player against the GM weilding NPC's like "Hellbore" suggested. Because this games possibilities are so fluid and infinite, some form of singular GM must be present to provide a level of nonpartisan discression. It is this GM/story-telling element that separates INQ from all other battle board games.

With this in mind, PC vs GM, OR PC vs PC w/ GM overseer are both viable options.

Askil the Undecided
09-07-2009, 11:53
I've GM'd every game of Inquisitor I've ever been involved in and I've played as a PC in all but my last 3 games. All but you just have to be able to draw the line between your character's interests and those of the storyteller.

It's not really that hard it just requires a little dicipline.

I often talk to my players about fudging rolls and rewarding creative thinking to get their feedback while the game is going in return they feed me ideas and I put GM decisions back into the game looking to them for if I'm playing favorites or going too insane.

As long as you have good players it's fine and very easy to GM on the fly while playing your character too. More to the point I find it helps me play in character because I've had to restrict my thinking more by really forcing me to think in character be able to justify the decisions from the character's prespective.

09-07-2009, 15:38
As long as you have good players it's fine and very easy to GM on the fly while playing your character too.

If you are playing with well seasoned players who have a sturdy understanding of the roll play aspect then it is possible to GM your own PC vs PC game.
However, I really don't recommend it for new players; especially those who are trying to make the switch from 40k. The itch to win can be too great at first.

10-07-2009, 18:55
Hahah i agree with you about the monney for blobs of plastic
thats why ive turned to inquisitor you pay about once or twice thats whats necessary and you can then play happily