Well, well, well. Looks like we have a not-mutiny on our hands! But more importantly, we have a big fat lie.

It’s been 2,618 days since we last talked about “the RPG lie.” Saying ridiculous and implausible shit remains very much a part of the hobby. But if you’re going to make your career winking at the truth, applying creative embellishment to reality, or otherwise engaging in acts of bald-faced chicanery, you’ve got to do more than board the The U.S.S. Make Sh*t Up. You’ve got to stick to that lie. That is a lesson that our robotic peacenik seems to be lacking.

Just because you failed your Deception/Bluff/Make-Shit-Up check, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ve failed. After all, one bad check is rarely the end of a social encounter Here’s an illustrative example for your consideration.

“But your majesty! Sir Sanctimonious didn’t slay the wicked puke monster! Our brave band of unlikely but loveable ne’er-do-wells did the deed!”

“Hmmm… Based upon eyewitness accounts, and the fact that you had the temerity to roll a Natural 1 in my court, I find myself unconvinced.”

If you stop there and admit your lie, there are only so many ways the fiction can go. Telling the world that, “Yeah, you’re right. I’m full of it,” is never a winning legal strategy.

If you stick to your guns, the fiction can adapt. Perhaps Sir Sanctimonious has enemies at court, and they would back your claim despite His Majesty’s doubts. Perhaps you can follow up with an amendment: “It may be Mr. Goodygood who delivered the killing blow. But only because he stole the Sword of Puke Monster Slaying from our MacGuffin locker!” You might even angle for a trial by combat, allowing your barbarian buddy to participate in diplomacy for once.

My advice is simply this: Never admit that you are lying. Because if you do, you’ve just cut yourself off from access to The Good Ending. And there are a lot of good endings available when you’re allowed to make shit up.

So here’s the discussion question for today’s comments section. What is the best con you’ve pulled in a game? What was your big fat lie, and how did you get your patsy to believe it? Hit us with all your finest falsehoods and most perfect prevarications down in the comments!


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