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TOPIC: SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too)

SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #1

As of more than 10 minutes ago all dungeons have started. Yes it is possible someone is viewing the feed and reading the forum at the same time but honestly if they want to spoil something then I figure let them at this point. If they find their experience will be better by knowing what other people did, at this point I don't care.

That said did anyone else notice that AC was being used incorrectly in the dungeon? They asked for our Melee and Range AC but when attacked they didn't ask us which mode we were in. I pointed out to one DM that I would always be using my bow so he should use my range AC. He said that it depended if the monster was using range or melee. I explained that is not how AC works in TD. (Though there is at least 1 token that does affect your AC if you are being attacked with range a rare from a few years ago that I forget the name I think it was bracers). Anyway it is minor thing but did slightly annoy me because if they are going to take down our AC I want them to be using the correct one and if they don't know if I am using my sword and shield or my bow when I am attacking, they cannot know which AC is the correct one.

Off of that it was nice to see AC used in one room vs 1a when no one I knows remembers it coming up. I was not impressed with the changes in that room. But I wasn't impressed with that room at all in 1a. I felt it was the worst room of the entire dungeon. I robot looked very cheapily made the first time through. Though he looked better or maybe I ignored him more this time, I don't know. I just felt that being attacked by a random person made no sense with the story. Maybe there was more you could do to interact with her that just defeat her, I don't know. I played that room 3 times this weekend. Twice we defeated her the third time we stunned her put her back in the cell and left her in there. The DM accepted that solution but I don't know that it would be an actual acceptable one. I know people tried to remove fear from her, disease, curse and charm. None of those seemed to affect anything. Paladin detected no evil on her. So I still don't know what her story was.


I wonder if the puzzle room 7 had an additional difficulty component for being done in the physical world. The last two lines of the riddle made me think that you needed to place the RED symbols (top to bottom) in first and then the rest of the colors (maybe in an order maybe not) from top to bottom. So you still solved it via Sudoku Style but you could actually place them in in any order. Just a thought that would have made the puzzle a little more difficult in the physical world, I don't think it was doable (easily) in the virtual with not being able to see both puzzles at once.

I have to give a shout out to all the DMs (5 runs worth) of doing a better job of making combat more than number calling. Most did a decent to great job of talking about the damage we did to the monsters. And is weird as it sounds, I didn't need it this time. Since they were all repeat fights I didn't need to know how I hit it. I know it is weird that in general I think it is a great additional and I hope they keep it because it makes combat less boring (and I am used to that in PTD). But for my second weekend I didn't need it for me. I am glad it is there for other players, it just didn't enhance combat this time around. It would have in August without doubt.

So even though there was improvement in combat descriptions, I still find combat boring. On nightmare monsters with 25AC are an auto hit with a +4 bard song with just a +9 to hit with the d10+1 model. I do agree a pure d20 model is not ideal either. I recommend TBTP work on figuring out what they think a distribution of slides should be....ask the community I am sure we have lots of opinions on this.

That said I do not find it any fault of the app makers, I want to make that clear. The amount of work they both did in a short amount of time was/is amazing. I actually preferred using them than trying to use dice, which would not have worked well for some of my group that I never played an RPG so wouldn't understand rolling 1 dice to attack and a different dice for damage. So the apps were awesome, bugs and all. The feedback and fixes that they both have been doing is wonderful.

Now Jeff and Company is going to and has gotten a lot of praise for VTD. I think as a product the puzzles worked surprisingly well over zoom. Some definitely would have been better in person (looking at the flow like the leaf puzzle), but I thought their execution worked well in constraints.

And though I LOVE running with 9 people in physical TD. I absolutely had a much better time in small groups in VTD. Since I cannot as easily get to know 9 bodiless voices as 4 or 5. Though there wasn't much of the cross talk that I feared, there was still some. And occasionally I wanted to tell someone to shut up because I could not hear what someone else was saying (I didn't ever say it). I is much easier to remove myself from someone that annoys me in physical than VTD. I also know that I can be VERY annoying so I am sure that others feels the same way about me...lol.

So is playing with only 5 people worth double the price in VTD. It definitely is for some. I know a fair number of 5-6 person groups went through this weekend. For me it is not, but that is because I am having a hard justifying the full dungeon price for a virtual experience.

My group has a full run for V2 because I do trust in Jeff and Co. Even with the changes from V1a to V1b though if V2 is still the same I won't be buying out a run for my group. I will still play because like everyone else I am hooked on this TD crack, I just won't buy out a run for 3, 4, and 5.

Just my two cents on the V1.
You either discover a star or you don't. You arrogant punk.

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #2

Things I'd like to see for V2+:

1. More coherent theme. After room 3, it just felt like there was a different story going on that didn't mean anything to me.

2. More attention to how the visuals come across on a computer screen. Early on had a weird dichotomy between light outside and woodland inside that was very dark. I'd actually rather that "outside" was just a better lit set, but I also didn't get much out of the first two rooms that wasn't the main characters - everything else just seemed like a dark room, one of which had some pine trees in it. 1a's third and fourth combats were visually pretty painful to look at, but, then, the theme shift had something to do with that.

3. Combat should be harder in at least the NM ACs (only played NM as didn't realize Epic was going to be available in time) and in the die roll mechanic.

4. Puzzles should be harder, at least at NM level, where it felt like the puzzles were both too straightforward and it didn't come across like there was more work at NM level than normal would have been except for maybe one of the puzzles.

I was interested in running V1a once and V1b once, but I never found a desire to replay the dungeon either weekend. I'm hoping V2 is appealing enough that I'd be tempted to do another run as I don't find the expense that big of a deal. I think just more coherent/thoughtful aesthetics could be enough as I realize both combat and puzzles have certain limitations that don't exist with PTD. Maybe if VTD did things PTD couldn't do that would also be more appealing.

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #3

jedibcg Banjo 513 Lover wrote: That said did anyone else notice that AC was being used incorrectly in the dungeon? They asked for our Melee and Range AC but when attacked they didn't ask us which mode we were in. I pointed out to one DM that I would always be using my bow so he should use my range AC. He said that it depended if the monster was using range or melee. I explained that is not how AC works in TD. (Though there is at least 1 token that does affect your AC if you are being attacked with range a rare from a few years ago that I forget the name I think it was bracers). Anyway it is minor thing but did slightly annoy me because if they are going to take down our AC I want them to be using the correct one and if they don't know if I am using my sword and shield or my bow when I am attacking, they cannot know which AC is the correct one.


You are correct. I know I was asking for main weapons, so I usually knew what people were doing vis-a-vis their AC, but if I ever didn't know for sure, I'd default to the higher AC. I hope other DMs did the same if they didn't ask for what kinds of attacks were being made.

These tokens add to AC vs ranged attacks: tokendb.com/?fwp_ac=when-monsters-attack-with-ranged
I came here to sing and collect tokens, and I'm alllll out of money.

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #4

Singsalot wrote: You are correct. I know I was asking for main weapons, so I usually knew what people were doing vis-a-vis their AC, but if I ever didn't know for sure, I'd default to the higher AC. I hope other DMs did the same if they didn't ask for what kinds of attacks were being made.

These tokens add to AC vs ranged attacks: tokendb.com/?fwp_ac=when-monsters-attack-with-ranged

Gloves of Repulsion were what I was thinking of, I didn't realize there were so many more. I don't believe I had you as a DM then because I don't recall every being asked for my main weapon either before combat though I admit a DM or two did ask for the weapon I was using while attacking to describe the attack (which admitting through me for a loop because I have so many builds I don't always remember what weapon that build is using). But I know in the only room that I believe checked AC I know I was not asked what I was using at that time (though once I did state I was holding onto my bow because you cannot sharpen a bow I logiced out...lol so was just handing over my shortsword).
You either discover a star or you don't. You arrogant punk.

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #5

I can tell you I had two runs this afternoon led by the same DM and without question, I had my favorite runs yet today. First the color added by the DM was exceptional. Two...we were well beyond numbers and such. We all had enough understanding that we didn’t sit there worried about 12 points here and 8 points there people took the damage and if we needed heals we did that. I know of two occasions today where I took huge damage but later realized it calculated it wrong because it didn’t deduct my prevents correctly...didn’t matter. Just heal and go. Sometimes worrying about how damage worked was not as fun as simply taking what was dealt and enjoy the next action.

I got to play with two groups of people today and I have seen many of the names on the forums and on discord and can say...wow. Loved it. My kind of intensity and creativity in play. Simply “having the answer” isn’t fun. But finding new answers...well I have read enough modules to know Easter eggs exist.

Is it perfect? No...but I will say it’s pretty darned good. I do think the burden of the D&D background assumption still exists and will for awhile. I still don’t know the exact things to hit with darkrift damage...I hit the construct with darkrift...I guess that worked?

Anyway, my friend has only played VTD and has already seen the potential of the game and has started building. I will say we must reset the randomness. It is totally screwing up the adventure making things far too easy. 10+1d10 is totally not an accurate depiction of the physical forces of humidity temperature wax sheen and texture that we have as variables when sliding. I propose a new randomness that calculates in based on the square inches of the total target area versus each to hit target square inches. For example “20” on a normal 24x36 slide surface only has about 8 sq inches of surface. Yes aim matters etc...but right now all the monster hits in a single round is incorrect. In real life, Often times only half the team actually lands a hit in a combat round...that is why monsters in NM die by the second round...because it’s actually about 4 rounds of real life hits. And it was actually noticed today that I had a streak of 51 point hits twice and a 50 pt before that. Huge hits but true. No crits (I didn’t equip the crit on construct token) so no good rolls wasted lol...
Jamie
AureliusBP


Ranger
tdcharactercreator.com/#/character/edit/b4b81c8d-c52e-4ffa-b291-a2eba22a6a8c

Am on Discord as AureliusBP if you want realtime chat.

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Last edit: by Jamie Campbell.

SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #6

Definitely I would love to see more attention given to the fact these puzzles will not be viewed in person and only on a computer screen! The sudoku puzzle would have been visually better in person, but online most colors felt like the La Croix of colors: White with a faint hint of red/green/blue/yellow. I straight up had to ask my party what the four colors were so I could try and look more carefully for the differences in them. The viewfinder puzzle was done excellently given the computer formatting. Take advantage of using tech! Enhance the puzzles with it and do things that couldn’t work as well in real life!
I play Wizard.

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 3 weeks ago #7

We were able to figure out the deal with the Ranger. PM me or find me on discord if you want the deets.

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 2 weeks ago #8

Any bards try using monster lore against person in cage?

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SPOILERS!!!! Reviews of V1b (and V1a too) 1 month 2 weeks ago #9

We had a total of six runs over the course of V1a and V1b, which is the most we've ever run a dungeon before (usually we run them twice, one at Origins and then at Gencon).

Overall we enjoyed our runs. Two of our six were run as a full group of ten with our friends, and the other four were PUGs. Some of the standout things we noticed:
- All of the DMs we had really got in to the game. They added a lot of flavor while still keeping combat moving, and it was nice to have one DM as a guide through the entire run instead of moving from DM to DM.
- Most DMs worked with the party to add a little more puzzle challenge on the fly for some situations. In two separate runs we had groups of ten where one player was running it for their first time. In both instances the DM added a little extra flavor to the puzzles so that the nine who had played could still help out so that the one person didn't have to try and figure them out alone. (For example, with the gate one DM told us that Bella didn't speak common and only spoke Fae, so we would need to communicate with her and our party members in the most descriptive terms we could. It let us help out our new player in a way that didn't just spell out the puzzle solution).
- The golems were fantastic. One of the best runs we had this weekend was a late night run where the golem was really interacting with the party. It made them feel like another party member, not just a camera walking through the dungeon.
- The audio and opening/ending cut scene. Our group of ten really appreciated the fact that for the first time in their history of playing TD, they could actually hear what was going on and have a solid grasp on the story elements and are looking forward to V2 and forward because of it.
- Damage that could actually be lessened. My resistance tokens really got a work out this time around and I was so happy about it lol.
- The work that went in to getting this all lined up to go so quickly. Sure, there were some flaws or some tech issues here and there, but we did notice how much this felt like a 'real' TD run, and we want it noted that the hard work didn't go unnoticed.

The not so standout:
- Combat ended up being a bit bland. Having run all the room combinations at least once, it was a little disappointing that so much of the combat was strictly AOE. The nymph could only try to drown you and it was a group attack. Every time we fought with the ogre mage he only used AOE spell attacks. We ran in to the ranger twice and both times they just kept attacking with the whirlwind attack that hit everyone (I'm not sure if they had other attacks and the DM just didn't use them?). I'll admit I can't remember if the robot and the ship's core attacked everyone or not because that was back in August and time has little solid meaning right now lol.
- The ranger was confusing. One run we spent the entire time keeping them held in the cage trying to heal them, talk to them, figure out exactly what was going on and why they were there/crazy but didn't really get any information (kudos to the volunteer that had to deal with us and made up answers on the fly though). As an added combat option it felt really like a weak addition that was very out of place at that point in the dungeon.

Overall, we really enjoyed the events and have no real complaints beyond what I listed above. It was a fun time, the virtual set up allowed us to play some fun run formats that we wouldn't have done if were running at a con in person, and we have our runs picked for the next round of events and plan to see this story through to completion. Huge thanks to all the volunteers and to the TD staff for making this all a possibility in these strange new times.

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