[RPG] How to handle a troublesome player even before the game starts


I'm preparing a game in Roll20. I have listed the game as looking for players. I'm not a picky person with my players if they are nice.

One guy has shown up very excited about the idea of my game. When I started to ask him things, he realized something I had already publicly posted in the game resume: that the character sheet would be predefined by me, though I would allow some minor changes once the player picked it, but mainly pregenerated by me.

The guy started to say things like "That's not roleplaying!". As English is not my mother tongue, I'm not sure if I have actually said something wrong in the resume, or if the person just didn't read it.

Here is the conversation. My question is:

  • Have I done something wrong?

If not:

  • Shall I allow this player to join the game? I'm worried that he didn't even read the resume of the game, and it doesn't help that even before the game has started he is arguing. I don't think I want to see what would happen later…

  • Am I making a bad focus on how I set up a game? Is the use of pregenerated characters a bad and wrong way to play?

Here is the transcript of the game resume:

Hi there!

I'm looking for players to try this system. I've been reading the
ASOIF books since a long time a go. Even before the TV show was in
planning so…

I want to explain the system I'll be using. Date is set up in 17 of
September. But the first meeting would be the day before that, to show
you your character sheets so you can choose one of them, I'll prepare
them for you. That day I'll allow you to make changes. After I'll show
you some game knowledge your character will know.

What I offer:

  • Small campaign: About 5-7 game seasons of 2 hours more or less. (Between 10 and 15 hours)
  • Great Knowledge of the books.
  • Branched story.
  • Game for 3-4 players.

What I ask of you:

  • Don't fail any of the game seasons.
  • Be proactive.

If all the group is OK, maybe we can continue the story beyond the
original point but that's a matter for another time.

P.S: English is not my mother tongue. I have run games in English
before. But I thought you should know it before applying.

P.S 2: If you feel you need more information feel free to ask. I'll do
all my answers per PM.


Best Answer

Have I done something wrong?

No but you do have a clash of styles with that particular player. Essentially you are providing and requiring pre-gen characters: some players will be fine with this and some won't

Shall I allow this player to join the game?

If you can play this game without this player, I would. It is likely that this player will be discontented in your campaign and while they may be able to overcome this, why take the risk?

Am I making a bad focus on how I set up a game?

It's your game: you can't do it wrong.

Some players rebel against too much game master control (aka railroading) others are completely ok with it. So long as you explain the premise of the game and your expectations and the players are on board with this, play any damn way you like.

In any case, even if it all turns to crap you can cut your losses, learn from your mistakes and try again.