Hey, remember back in 2014 when I “liveblogged” an AP video of maybe the worst session of The One Ring ever?

Ref: https://plus.google.com/+MarkDelsing/posts/6PxMy9iJUxS

Well, I found them again. Another session from three years later, with, I think, the same GM, and even the same player doing needlepoint — even sitting in the same seat. She might even be playing the same PC, one she apparently brings from campaign to campaign… or maybe these are one-shots, I dunno. This group’s YT channel is “TolkienMoot”, which is apparently an annual convention, that, AFAICT, no one should ever attend ever.

And hey, five minutes in… a player is introducing their character and in the middle of it the GM’s phone rings. GM answers the phone and starts talking. The player is also still talking. GM gets up and walks out of the room. Player continues to introduce his PC. Nobody pauses, nobody excuses themselves, nobody acknowledges any aspect of the social situation that is happening in front of them.

Bonus: GM is in costume.

74 thoughts on “Hey, remember back in 2014 when I “liveblogged” an AP video of maybe the worst session of The One Ring ever?

  1. Part of me is like, “Dude, you’re all at a Tolkien convention,” but then she says she hasn’t read the books in 40 years, but has seen the movies, and I’m all like, “Why are you at a Tolkien convention?”

    I have no fucking clue what planet these TolkienMoot people are from.

  2. Tolkien convention,” but then she says she hasn’t read the books in 40 years, but has seen the movies, and I’m all like, “Why are you at a Tolkien convention?” I have no fucking clue what planet these TolkienMoot people are from.]]>

  3. Real talk, though: I knit at table sometimes when I game. I make sure I am working on something small (socks) and something I don’t have to keep too close an eye on. Like a lot of experienced knitters, I can knit a lot of things without looking at my hands, mostly doing it by feel. Would you feel as if I was being rude if I had my knitting there?

    (having been an avid embroiderer in my youth I can state that embroidery is a bridge too far. You have to look at it, and it’s always going to be between you and the other people you’re speaking to)


  4. Sandy J-T I know Joe Beason says he knits at the table and it actually helps him focus.

    I dunno if it would bother me as a GM. Yes? I haven’t experienced it.

    A guy in my old HERO group would read at the table. Sometimes he’d ask me to look at something he found funny or interesting. I’m surprised I never punched him.

  5. Sandy J-T that’s a thing. I do something similar. Ruth will get upset with me when I multitask while watching a show. But if I don’t do something to keep that part of my brain occupied I can’t actually focus on the show. But to her it looks like lack of interest / engagement.

    And despite knowing that, I have to force myself to not have the same irritated reaction to knitters* at the game table.

    *Or crochet.

  6. I’m the same way, except it’s either stupid mindless match 3 puzzle games, or painting miniatures instead of knitting. I hate that i regularly set a “bad example” for the folks who get out their phone and start surfing facebook or snapchat or whatever. What’s worse is when they find something funny in their streams and share it around… Like, it’s one thing if we were just talking about dog classes and you pull up the 4th Ed Corgi joke class; it’s something else entirely if you’re not really paying attention and you start sharing League of Legend memes or funny cat videos.

  7. I can be a little distractable at the table. Knitting something straightforward occupies just enough of my brain without occupying all of it, unlike, say, my phone, which sucks up all my attention. I have to look at my knitting, but I can look up and down, or give verbal indications that I’m tracking.

  8. I didn’t watch the video but god does this sound like complete crap, if I think this is the image most of people have of our hobby…AARGH! #rageButton

    About distractions, I have a player in my RPG/BG group who, similarly to other people here, says she needs to toy with her phone to better concentrate. I know for sure it’s true and while it was strange in the beginning, I got used to it. I would have no problem wiht a player multitasking during a session, as long as I know they are following the game. I.e., this should never happen:
    “Dave, what do you do?”
    “Er…uh? Sorry, could you repeat please? I wasn’t paying attention”

    That quite bothers me, since it means the player actually wasn’t paying attention. But that hardly ever happens in my group, fortunately, and I can tolerate it to happen from time to time (especially if it’s not always the same player) ^^

  9. Mark Delsing I’m dubious about the “we got the first 75 copies of TOR printed” claim. Shane Ivey and I drove the first shipment of TOR in the US up to Gencon in 2011, where they were sold at the Cubicle 7 booth, and I doubt they were first in line and bought 75 copies.

  10. John Marron In the video, the GM claims he/they received them prior to GenCon, because they pre-ordered or something. I find this dubious, given that in the last video there was no evidence he’d even read the rules, which you’d think would be a thing you would do if you were one of The Chosen™.

  11. Players are now making sure they pick the least interesting Fellowship Focus (i.e., your PCs bond).

    “We’re both hobbits, so I guess us two.”

    “Oh, we’d probably hate each other.” “Yeah, better not choose me!”

  12. GM has just stated that “I’ll be leaning heavily on [player] for rules mechanics because I only run this once a year but he plays this a lot.” Yes, the GM who bragged about getting one of the first 75 copies apparently still doesn’t know the game very well.

    Bonus: the player he is leaning on is the player who was introducing his PC when the GM took his phone call earlier.

    And remember, this GM is also in costume. Costume for con = no problem. Study rules for game he is running at con = nope.

  13. GM has warned the “more experienced” roleplayers that TOR is a “more narrative” system than they may be used to. He’s also describing some stuff about the success mechanic that iirc is not even correct at all.

  14. Mark Delsing ah, generic western fantasy
    swords: cheap and readily available, can and should be considered an office supply, haul them around like golf clubs
    horses: can run like motorcycles as far and as fast as you need them, also a cheap, plentiful commodity
    people of color: now that’s just crazy talk, there’s no way there would be any
    tobacco, a new world crop: cheap and readily available in European-type climates