As a GM, how can I stop killing my games?

Probably the worst issue I have as a Game Master is that I think of a game, I write a campaign plot for it — End, Beginning and Middle, get hyped, hype my players, and after 2 months I get bored with it and want the story to end so I can start running a newer game or campaign I’ve thought up in the meantime. So I just disappear some weeks and invent I have stuff to do, cancel the game, and run another one.

Usually, midway through our game I have a better idea for a campaign, and that’s how our group has evolved: Each campaign, I have to accept, has been more fun and intriguing than the last one, but just the thought I could be roleplaying a better plot with better mechanics is too much. I really like my group, and they like my plots so much they ask me for a Q&A session pretty much every week to know what will happen, villain bios, NPC bios, etc; however I just pretend that I am still enjoying the original campaign.

Two months ago we started playing a 4E game about guys who get trapped inside a videogame, and 4e was very good for it, since it was just fight and fight and fight, and the whole plot is about well, the hostility of the online game towards the players and a moral of “every life is precious”, ironic in an intentional way.

The thing is, I discovered 5e, switched systems, loved it, and it doesn’t feels like playing inside a videogame anymore. The adventures on that world have become boring for me already, and the players are just coming to the table for the plot. Indeed, I’m supposed to design next adventure but just thinking about all I can do on other setting with these rules hypes me so much, and really, I can’t think of anything more interesting for the guys now, specially since we’re too deep into the adventure it’s too late to make it “non linear”.

I’m planning a sandbox campaign for when we “finish” this one, and I’m having fun as a GM as never before, imagining interaction, building the important locations, making random encounter and weather tables, etc; but then I think I have to go back and master something that isn’t just interesting for me, may as well just run a pure roleplaying game for the current campaign, no combats, but the players expect more.

When they noticed me making a new campaign, they seemed curious and excited, but one of my friends told me: “We’re gonna finish the campaign we have now, right?”. She seemed kinda worried the same story would repeat.

My summer break is about to end, and my sandbox campaign design is halfway done, and I haven’t mastered our current sessions for days and two of the players even asked me if we could begin the other campaign already, while the other two keep telling me I shouldn’t let the current one die.

The fact that there’s still too much to do on our current game overwhelms me, since I’m getting bored of bringing them the same story every week, and I already decided my next campaign will be led by player motivations that will affect the little plot I have readied for it, and make them help me build the world.

So, how do I get out of this vicious circle? How do I stick with the campaign in progress and stop being lured by the thought of creating a new campaign?

Killing a Vampire without Sunlight, Running Water or Wooden Stake

In the adventure module

a vampire is encountered guarding treasure in the same room where its coffin is. I am preparing to run this encounter, and the party is unlikely to have wooden stakes or access to running water or sunlight.

A vampire’s Misty Escape trait reads:

When it drops to 0 hit points outside its resting place, the vampire transforms into a cloud of mist (as in the Shapechanger trait) instead of falling unconscious, provided that it isn’t in sunlight or running water. If it can’t transform, it is destroyed.

While it has 0 hit points in mist form, it can’t revert to its vampire form, and it must reach its resting place within 2 hours or be destroyed. Once in its resting place, it reverts to its vampire form. It is then paralyzed until it regains at least 1 hit point. After spending 1 hour in its resting place with 0 hit points, it regains 1 hit point.

So if and when the party drops the vampire to 0 HP, the vampire will transform into a cloud of mist, fly across the room to its coffin, and revert to its vampire form, where it will lie paralyzed. Note that its Regeneration trait will not work while it has 0 HP.

At this point, can the party just kill the vampire by hitting it with one or more attacks while it has 0 HP? Or if not, what am I missing?

I know that the

in the room will complicate this, but not make it impossible.

How can I curse a PC’s soul for killing off their last character without impacting their gameplay too much?

In the last session one character died, another player didn’t like his character and after the first death tried everything he could to kill himself (but failed because the party healed him so he impaled himself). To not encourage this behaviour I want to put a curse of his new characters soul as killing yourself is ‘dishonourable,’ but I don’t know what the consequences of this should be? His new character is a warlock that specialises in healing, and his patron is a lawful good black sun that idealises honour, justice and order.

Countering a system killing UID/GID=0 processes in Android

Suppose that there were a security system in an Android kernel meant to prevent exploits that have arbitrary kernel memory read/write from getting root privileges. This system,

  1. Kills a process by using force_sig() with SIGKILL if the process UID or GID is 0 and if the system decides it shouldn’t be.
  2. Depends on kernel variables that are read-only after init. (on/off status)

If we assume that the system decides with complete accuracy in [1] above, and KASLR is not present on the device, what can an exploit do to counter this system and get root IDs?

What I can think of:

  1. Disabling SIGKILL temporarily:
    If SIGKILL can be disabled temporarily (or even permanently until reboot) then the system is essentially useless, but I have yet to find a way to disable SIGKILL through kernel memory write.
  2. Disabling the system by flipping the read-only bits somehow:
    This is unlikely to be possible but included for the sake of completeness.
  3. Editing the text sections of kernel memory to patch the functions:
    Also unlikely to be possible because the text section is read-only.

The GM ruled that we didn’t get XP for killing the boss because an enemy caster’s spell killed them. Is this allowed?

We are playing Rise of the Runelords, and were fighting Nualia and her minions in Thisletop. During the heat of the battle, Nualia was near death at just 12 HP. Her minion caster fireballed the party that surrounded her. The party survived via making the save or simply soaking the damage. The fireball killed Nualia, and the party killed the rest of the minions.

When it came to tallying the XP, the GM rationalized that since party did not deliver the killing blow to Nualia, we do not receive XP for her demise – but we get the XP for killing the remaining minions.

Can the GM do this, and is it legal?

Just installed LVM Raid 1 on a new server with 2x 10Tb hard drives and the Disk I/O is killing everything else every second

I copied a bit of data on my LVM based RAID1 (not hardware RAID) with 2× 10Tb hard drives:

/dev/mapper/users-users  9.1T  1.9G  8.6T   1% /home 

and now it’s killing my I/O to the point where my mouse, keyboard, video are blocked/unblocked/blocked/unblocked…

I’m thinking that maybe something is wrong at the hardware level but wondering what that could be. Wondering what to test first to try to make a better diagnostic.

I have another 2 drives in the same drive array but they are not setup in RAID mode.

Looking at the output of iotop it tells me that there is about 2Mb/s written to disk, a pretty much permanent write… When I look at the Disk LED, I can see them come up and out over and over again and can hear the seeking heads too.

Trying to watch a video, it fails really bad. Choppy would not even be the word here. It’s like one image every other second if even that much. So a really big I/O killer for the entire computer.

Wondering whether someone would have encountered such a problem before and what can be done to fix it if possible (I certainly hope it is possible!)

My motherboard is a Supermicro X11DPH-T and I also got a case from Supermicro the 745BAC-R1K28B2 4U Full Tower Chassis. I’m running Ubuntu 18.04 LTS. The server is new and so is the install (i.e. not an upgrade from 16.04 or who knows what…)

Would there be a way to know whether a specific hard drive or some other hardware device is causing the trouble?

Can killing the spellcaster undo a ‘permanent’ True Polymorph?

So I have a character (E) that, Many years ago, was True Polymorphed into an elf so his also-elven spouse (N) wouldn’t outlive him so drastically. The result ended in E being roughly thirty years older than A to compensate for what we labelled as the difference between Elf Years and normal lifespan years.

Things happened, and due to time screw ups in the Feywild, A is now much older than E. If A dies before E, would it dispel True Polymorph and also leave me with a dead character?

Bridging LAN and WIFI using netplan not working and killing AP

Hello everyone and thanks in advance!

I’m trying to extend my local LAN network via WIFI and would like all devices in the same network. The setup is as follows:

  • DHCP/DNS server running inside the LAN
  • separate PC linked to the LAN, with WIFI capability (sadly it’s not an option, to have the DHCP/DNS server running on this machine)

Since I’m running Ubuntu 18.04, I’m trying to use netplan to set everything up. Here’s my conf file:

network:   version: 2   renderer: NetworkManager   ethernets:     enp2s0:       dhcp4: no       addresses: [192.168.1.10/24]       gateway: 192.168.1.1       nameservers:         addresses: [192.168.1.2, 8.8.8.8, 8.8.4.4]   wifis:     wlp1s0:       access-points:         "MyWifi":           mode: ap           password: "DONTLOOK"   bridges:     br0:       dhcp4: yes       interfaces: [enp2s0, wlp1s0] 

Now, running the two network separately, i.e without the bridges section, everything works. With dnsmasq activated I can connect to the access point.

However I can’t seem to get the bridge working. Even worse is, as soon as the bridge gets activated access to the AP is no longer possible.

Does anybody have an idea, what I’m missing?