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TOPIC: What to do about bad DMs?

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #13

First of all contact TD and let them know the exact run and room do they know who the DM is and they can try to correct the DM for the future.

I do think it would help to allow players to do a survey later and rate things including the volunteers.

I would also have liked to see better training but that would be quite a task.
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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #14

I was the Adventure Coordinator for the Underdark dungeons. I am sorry that you had these negative experiences. Behavior you described would certainly not be what we would hope to see in the dungeon.

Most of the time, our DMs are making every effort to be professional and to make sure the players have a good time. Sometimes there are misunderstandings, sometimes DMs are tired. We try to minimize problems by observing them, giving them breaks, etc.

Please please please, if you have an experience like this, let us know at the time or after your adventure. We can not address these concerns if we don't know about them. I did not know about these issues, and I was on duty at the time. Anyone with a radio can summon an AC or a director to come to find out what happened and make sure it doesn't happen again.

As far as treasure stamps go, there was an effort this year to make sure the stamps were a reward for solving the puzzle, not just making it through the room. If the party was completely fire resistant and just walked across the lava river, they made it across the room, but did not solve the puzzle. We tried to be as consistent as possible between shifts and dungeons and days.

It would be great if there were more time available for training, but between people's travel arrangements and the time needed to build the dungeon, training time is pretty limited. The GT run Weds night also limits our time for training.

Finally, please remember the DMs and NPCs and coaches and admin workers and the person at coat check and so on are all volunteering their time to help True Dungeon. It wouldn't be possible without them.

Again, please let an AC or director know if you have a problem, a concern, an idea, a question. That's why we are there.
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Last edit: by bpsymington.

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #15

on our first run(normal difficulty) we failed the mushroom room, before we attempted eating our choice, the dm told us that one mistake would make us inneligible for the treasure loot...

and when we did the midflayer fight, it felt to me that the dm was intentionally telling us that the flayer moved whenever we would try to strike it(also telling casters that they missed their spells after telling the bard who passed his lorecheck that only ranged weapons and spells that required a slide were not effective)

that completely spoiled our first run through TD this year, and as a result i was very apprehensive about attempting later runs with inexperienced and first time players

now reading this i am doubly dissapointed about that first run but was extremely satisfied with the DMs and Trainers during our runs on friday saturday and sunday.

BTW our first run started at 10:50 so I doubt that DM fatigue was a major factor is the quality of those rooms


balthasar wrote: I believe that depending on your difficulty, there was a cut off for attempts on room 6. Three tries on Normal, 2 on Hardcore, and 1 on Nightmare. We had a DM blank us on treasure for one bad choice on HC, but we got our card fixed later.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #16

Regarding the mind flayer, sliding spells were not effective at all, but single target spells like magic missile still had a 50% chance to miss due to its psychic blur ability. Area of effect spells like fireball was effective as normal.

I am glad your later runs were more satisfying.
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Last edit: by bpsymington. Reason: Typo

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #17

I absolutely understand that Dm training is a limited space. And that with new volunteers it can be a trial. But when I do ask to speak to someone because of an issue. I don't expect to be ignored, I went through with a complete group of new people and being told in room six that for solving the puzzle they still failed the puzzle it completly ruined the experience for them. Several told me they would not be back and several choose not to participate in room seven because of the experience.

For reference this was combat side in dark at 9:12 am

Also I would like to as a good note say while our coach was obviously very new to the program he did an excellent job was incredibly friendly. Struggled with the party card but with some help from me and a coach running by was able to get us out almost exactly on time.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #18

Yes, all of our later runs were very satisfying. the last run we had, a 10:49 underdark puzzle was a lot of fun, we had several newbies in the run that had never ran true dungeon before and the trainer, i believe that his name was Dan or Don was very helpful at advising the newbies during the training time.

we were told that we were the first group to complete the lava room without any errors for that DM and were able to correctly identify which mushroom to eat. the only misstep during our run was when we got to the last room and i lost focus and touched the table and managed to kill yself by not paying attention, luckily the rest of the team were able to solve the puzzle quickly and effectivly.

All in all my Experience was very satisfied nad we look forward to TD doing a WYC run and whatever wonderful plots are devised for next year's Gencon.


Thanks to everyone for all the hard work that was put into TD this year.

Sorry for kinda highjacking the thread for a moment.

bpsymington wrote: Regarding the mind flayer, sliding spells were not effective at all, but single target spells like magic missile still had a 50% chance to miss due to its psychic blur ability. Area of effect spells like fireball was effective as normal.

I am glad your later runs were more satisfying.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #19

I'm not trying to argue or dispute anything about the original content of this thread - it sounds like a bad time!

Because I imagine lots of people are reading this thread based on the comment velocity, I'd just like to mention my experience as I went on 5 runs this year, 1 with experienced players, and 4 with a mix of new and experienced players.

We had in general very positive experiences, if anything our biggest problem was extra down time in the rooms following the resolution of the room - with the exception of the Elevator and Mushroom room the rooms were very pretty sparse this year - it would have been nicer to have more "environmental" decoration in the rooms to investigate.

The DM in the Sable Gauntlet room with the illusion and then big spider for the second run did an amazing job of suckering in the group by asking that we help him light the table to resolve the sliders on the board focusing everyone's attention away.

Many of our new players expressed a desire to come back next year.

I would mention that the Sable Combat room with the spider infestation was tough going for DMs and party member nerves, lots of:

Monk: I'm immune to poison.
DM: Not this poison.
Wizard: I cast burning hands on myself.
DM: No effect - they are completely immune to magic.
Cleric: Can I cure disease?
DM: It's not a disease.
Player: Potion Moon Veil - cures all curses and diseases.
DM: Not this one.

I think in the future for rooms like this the DM's preamble spiel needs to include a bit more meta-game information, such as: "As your party tries to heal itself, you discover that no spells, tokens, or class abilities will effect these creatures in any way - you must try something else."

It's somewhat frustrating both to feel like the DM is "Nuh-uh-ing" all your answers in an ad-hoc fashion (even though I know that's not what is really going on, it feels that way), and it's also frustrating to lose the time in the room trying to solve things in the straightforward way.

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Last edit: by Matthew Hayward.

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #20

Matthew Hayward wrote:
I would mention that the Sable Combat room with the spider infestation was tough going for DMs and party member nerves, lots of:

Monk: I'm immune to poison.
DM: Not this poison.
Wizard: I cast burning hands on myself.
DM: No effect - they are completely immune to magic.
Cleric: Can I cure disease?
DM: It's not a disease.
Player: Potion Moon Veil - cures all curses and diseases.
DM: Not this one.

I think in the future for rooms like this the DM's preamble spiel needs to include a bit more meta-game information, such as: "As your party tries to heal itself, you discover that no spells, tokens, or class abilities will effect these creatures in any way - you must try something else."

It's somewhat frustrating both to feel like the DM is "Nuh-uh-ing" all your answers in an ad-hoc fashion (even though I know that's not what is really going on, it feels that way), and it's also frustrating to lose the time in the room trying to solve things in the straightforward way.


If I hear a word I have an effect against, I use that effect regardless of DM saying no. My loyalty and money deserve consistency.
If Jeff wants spider poison to be effective against monks (or MoG), he needs to call it something else.
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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #21

Matthew Hayward wrote: I would mention that the Sable Combat room with the spider infestation was tough going for DMs and party member nerves...


Bingo.

I had a fantastic time in Underdark, but I was very frustrated with this room on the Sable side. We tried all sorts radically different approaches, some clever (and some not so clever), using a variety of different tokens (going far back into the archives) to assist. None succeeded.

I'll still keep up with future tokens, but man, it helps if the tokens actually WORK...
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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #22

I was a bit disappointed by this exchange:

DM: You are blinded by psychic poison.
Me: I have immunity to psychic.
DM: With what?
Me: IS Amythyst Ovid.
DM: Let me see. No, that doesn't work. There is a token that works, but that is not it.

All the more so as a somewhat slow DM caused us to barely get two rounds of combat in the next room resulting in push damage. Two good slides would have done it. We were never in real danger in either situation, so its more like mild annoyance.

Why not call it eldritch poison, or just a blast of eldritch energy. We all know we can't do a thing about that.
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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #23

There was some inconsistency on the Amethyst Ovoid in the spider/grub room. My first run, I showed it to the DM and he said yes that works. The next two, it was denied (because it's not a psychic "blast"). It being denied is probably correct though, so I'm not upset about it.

Also I played monk once, and the DM didn't give me an insect at all (I assume since I was immune to all poisons).
Classes Played: Barbarian (21 times), Monk (11), Cleric (9), Fighter (9), Rogue (9), Dwarf Fighter (7), Ranger (6), Paladin (5), Druid (5), Elf Wizard (2), Wizard (2).

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Last edit: by Jeff321.

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 4 years 2 weeks ago #24

WaterSomePlants wrote:

Matthew Hayward wrote: I would mention that the Sable Combat room with the spider infestation was tough going for DMs and party member nerves...


Bingo.

I had a fantastic time in Underdark, but I was very frustrated with this room on the Sable side. We tried all sorts radically different approaches, some clever (and some not so clever), using a variety of different tokens (going far back into the archives) to assist. None succeeded.

I'll still keep up with future tokens, but man, it helps if the tokens actually WORK...


I targeted one with a Firebolt. That stopped it from hurting anyone.
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