OngoingWorlds blog

News & articles about play-by-post games, for roleplayers & writers

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How do you stop people from godmodding?

trolling godmodders

I noticed that RPRepository posted a news article about godmodding – which remains a constant problem in roleplaying games. I’d say it’s probably the biggest problem – would you agree?

So in her article Kim gives a description of what godmodding is:

god moding (aka god modding) noun:

  1. A player who tries to control things that are not under their control, i.e. the reactions and emotions of other people’s characters
  2. A rude behavior in which a gamer oversteps what is allowed by the written or unwritten rules of the game.

There’s a more detailed description that I posted here, posted a long time ago and still strangely one of our blog’s most popular articles!

Who does it – and why?

Kim’s article has quotes from roleplayers talking about their experience with godmodders, and why they don’t like it. What I liked the most was the description of the types of people who godmod:

God modding is primarily exhibited by two types of people:

  1. Most commonly, very green new players
  2. Very rarely, old, impatient players who think that they have “earned the right”.

I think this is about right, although it’s a harsh truth. Knowng the causes of course I think can help us all drown out godmodding forever. Another quote which sums up godmodding is this by Degu:

A lot of people want to be the character that comes out on top or have a preconception as to how ‘badass’ their character should appear, as well as in contrast to the character they are up against. If a player feels that they should easily be able to beat their opponent i’ve seen it happen then. At the same time however, sometimes with newer players it’s just a lack of RP etiquette knowledge i think. I know i remember feeling very clumsy and unsure of what to do in a fight, for instance, when i first started roleplaying. I’m very sure i god modded a couple of times before being told off.

Degu

How to handle a godmodder

We posted on this blog a couple of years ago a list of 12 user-submitted suggestions about dealing with a godmodder, some of which you might agree with, some you might not.

There’s some good suggestions on Kim’s article. Mostly of course it’s about communication.

I also like talking to people about it (in a nice way), and explain to them how god moding works against a story instead of helping it. It’s a bit of a blunt approach usually, but in my experience a lot of people never considered that being amazing at everything gets boring fast and isn’t very special when you think about it. Not when everyone else around you is amazing at everything too. 😉

Sanne

And of course lead by example…

Be a role model and have the community or thread standards/rules spelled out where you can refer the player to them. “Here’s what we expect. Please work within our guidelines if you want your RP to be more successful.”

– Wes Davis

You can read the post by Kim here, which I encourage you to do. I think as many people know about godmodding and how to solve it the better! Let us know your thoughts and experiences about roleplaying in the comments below.

We’ve got loads more articles about godmodding here.

  • New Worlds Project

    Strangely enough, whilst we’ve planned for it, we’ve never encountered god-moding. So for us it’s not something we’ve had to deal with much, and I think extensive resources, tips and guidelines go a long way towards steering the wayward soul to achieving the right balance.

  • Tiberius Creations

    GM’s and game creators can also be guilty of god modding. Usually they make the story one sided and make it very centered around their character so their perfect. This can also fall under the new player category because sometimes it’s new GM’s with new games.

    • Mrxanadu

      ESPECIALLY if the game is centered around one character

  • Mrxanadu

    I find that Ludovico works very well with reprogramming godmodders.

    • How do you mean?

      • Mrxanadu

        You strap them into a chair, tape their eyelids open, and then force them to watch an anti-godmodding video…Clockwork Orange style

        • Haha! Great, what sort of images would be shown in such a video? People slamming their laptops closed in rage?

  • Baragon

    If any player tries to godmod in my game, their character will be killed. Problem solved.

    • That’s quite an extreme reaction. How about explain to them why it’s wrong and give them 3 chances, so that they’ve got time to learn. Also make sure it’s clear that you have a no-godmodding policy.
      In some games it’s allowed as it can actually be useful http://www.ongoingworlds.com/blog/2014/06/metagaming-is-good/

      • Baragon

        An extreme reaction indeed. If I had the time to mollycoddle immature, presumptive twits then perhaps my way of dealing with them would be of a gentler nature. But I don’t have the time. Oh, and off the subject, this is a great website! Good work!