Tell me that you’ve never been playing some kind of strategy game or RPG and do something you should know better than to do.
Something along the lines of “Okay I open the door………OH CRAP I FORGOT TO CHECK FOR TRA-” *squish*
Yeah. If you tell me you’ve never done that, I won’t believe you. I know I’ve done it. Like ending a firing phase in 40k without firing off all those pretty lascannons on my Valkyrie Gunship and realizing my error the moment I’d declared my firing phase over. Yeah. That one lost me both the Valkyrie and the game. Or the time that I forgot that my mage was almost out of juice before enacting a plan that required me to burn off more magic power than I had left, or a couple of times when I’ve forgotten that my character had a spell or power that would have breezed through a particular challenge until after the fact… yeah that didn’t go well either.
This is not about the times when you did something that seemed like your best option until you discovered some new detail or piece of information that you didn’t have just after enacting them that made the whole exercise futile. It’s also not about when the GM changed something and rendered a plan moot, like when a D&D GM painted my group in a corner and bailed us out of it.
How? By giving us a pre-generated party with extremely specific spell selections intending that we would save almost every single spell to allow us to get through the big bad’s Prismatic Wall – at the end of an extensive dungeon, and without us knowing about said prismatic wall at the beginning of the adventure. We made some extremely creative uses of the odd spells that we had and breezed through most of the dungeon due to their utility in ways the GM had not anticipated. He realized that he had set us up to paint ourselves into a corner with no way to get out when we reached the Big Bad. We sat down and looked over what it takes to get through and a sinking feeling hit us. At about that time my gallant Fighter, the party’s leader, knowing that a) the Prismatic Wall could not be knocked down with our remaining spell loadout, b) that in-game we had one hour before a cosmic deadline, c) the spell’s duration was such that it would last until well after said cosmic deadline, and d) we had no other means to get at the Big Bad than through the wall, did the suicidal but gallant thing and charged headlong through it for death or glory. The only saving throw that I failed out of the hideous number I had to roll was the Flesh-to-Stone one, which brought my foolhardy charge to a rather premature conclusion. At this point, the GM decided that was uncool, brought down the Prismatic Wall with a deus ex machina so the party was able to take on the Big Bad and defeat him. My guy still died for nothing, though.
This is not about that kind of story, it’s about the occasions where you as a player forgot or overlooked some painfully obvious detail, forgot that you had a power that could have saved you or whatever.
If you’re reading this and have one (or more) of those moments to share, I’d love to hear about it.