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TOPIC: What to do about bad DMs?

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #73

Arcanist Kolixela wrote: Spider Web Puzzle:
I think I got the same female room DM several of the others of you got.

I had an ABSOLUTELY 100% NOT KOSHER situation.

I walked into the run with 9 newbies and myself. I had already run and solved the puzzle on a previous run so AS WE ALL DO I stepped aside to let my friends play and approached the DM to give her the standard "I have run this room, I know the answer. If we get near time I will step in and solve the puzzle by {insert puzzle solution} but I want to allow my team to attempt it."

I was told

EVEN THOUGH I GAVE THE CORRECT SOLUTION IF THE TEAM I WAS CURRENTLY WITH DID NOT SOLVE IT ON THEIR OWN SHE WAS DENYING THE PUZZLE STAMP.

How is that even slightly OK, that means that if I want to guarantee the 10 treasure for the run I am hosting I must ruin the puzzle for my team and complete the puzzle for them. Even then I don't know if she would have given me the completion since THEY didn't solve it.


As the AC for that side... I'm sorry, that was a bad call by the DM, and we will address it to insure it's not an issue next year.
-Master Li Lou Bahn, Terror of the East, Master of Shadows, Pillager of the province of Ch'in, Mandarin of the Emporer Shou Wei, Ambassador to the foreign devils of the West, and the most dangerous ninja in all of Greyhawk."cause I'm the only ninja in all of Gwehawk!!!"

2015 Adventure Coordinator for Sable Gauntlet

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #74

Barry Welling wrote:

Eric Martin wrote:

Bottom line: If you have a bad experience, Tell us, when it happens. There's very little we can do after the fact to solve a frustration or a problem.


So, if I take my run in Underdark Puzzle as an example, the DM had a hard time telling yellow from Amber. That made checking our submitted solutions very slow, and we ended up running out of time before we solved the puzzle.

Even just typing this, the idea of interrupting that process to complain to an AC that the DM is too slow because the yellow/amber lights are too close in color is making me cringe. It was frustrating, and I think that the number of comments about yellow/amber or blue/green/teal indicate that there were technical problems with this puzzle. But at 12 minutes a room, I can't ever see myself making a call to interrupt the adventure with a complaint.


So bring it up in the Epilogue room, or after you exit the Epilogue room into the storyscape.

I get that with a 12 minute timer in each room, any delay is making it worse.

the counter point is that without Talking to the wronged party directly, it's hard to know what happened, and thus hard to be sure we're able to address the issue at hand while it's 1. Relevant, and 2. Able to improve the runs that follow. Plus it affords us the opportunity to insure you the customer feel we've done something, and your concerns were properly addressed. (If not, then by all means, escalate the matter from an AC to a Director)


I have to say. I am at least glad that the puzzle room DMs this year KNOW THE SOLUTION TO THEIR OWN PUZZLES unlike last year (I'm looking at you, gas room) and I was VERY happy to see less mechanical breakable puzzles this year but I was VERY upset by how puzzle rooms are handled this year.

If there is a limit to how many tries you have before losing the treasure it needs to be WRITTEN ON THE WALL NEXT TO THE TREASURE MARK easily viewable.

If damage is unavoidable it needs to be ELDRITCH or PUSH damage, nothing else, no flavoring. We KNOW those can't be avoided.

If a puzzle has a # of tries allowed before loss of loot that number needs to be higher than 0 ON ALL DIFFICULTIES. Should be able to make 1 mistake on Nightmare, 2 on Hardcore, 3 on Normal.

If a monster has massive immunities to magic they should not ALSO have massive AC. A party needs at least 1 valid way to deal with an enemy.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #75

Disbeeleaf wrote: The same thing happened to us in this room.

The druid (me) crossed first with the dragon scale set and the ring of SEC, and took no damage from the heat, fire or lava. After that, the DM emphasized that I was the second to cross after the person we were chasing, then we could see the letter patterns needed to cross. Everyone else crossed on the right letters.

We did not get the treasure stamp because I walked across without solving the puzzle.

That DM was polite but inflexible. She was obviously under direction from above to not grant the treasure stamp to those who do not solve the puzzle before crossing.

No fault to her, but the requirement to get the stamp left no one happy I am sure.

That requirement was a bad idea.


This is SO TERRIBLY WRONG.

If she was instructed to fail you for that she should have told you immediately upon you saying what you wanted to do.

"OK that will work but if you use the boots you will fail to find the magical treasure chest, are you sure you wish to do that?"

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #76

Arcanist Kolixela wrote: I was told

EVEN THOUGH I GAVE THE CORRECT SOLUTION IF THE TEAM I WAS CURRENTLY WITH DID NOT SOLVE IT ON THEIR OWN SHE WAS DENYING THE PUZZLE STAMP.

Not cool :(
Have you looked it up in the TDb ?
Please post TDb corrections/suggestions in this thread .
If I write something in teal, it should not be taken seriously.

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Last edit: by Druegar.

Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #77

Arcanist Kolixela wrote:

Barry Welling wrote:

Eric Martin wrote:

Bottom line: If you have a bad experience, Tell us, when it happens. There's very little we can do after the fact to solve a frustration or a problem.


So, if I take my run in Underdark Puzzle as an example, the DM had a hard time telling yellow from Amber. That made checking our submitted solutions very slow, and we ended up running out of time before we solved the puzzle.

Even just typing this, the idea of interrupting that process to complain to an AC that the DM is too slow because the yellow/amber lights are too close in color is making me cringe. It was frustrating, and I think that the number of comments about yellow/amber or blue/green/teal indicate that there were technical problems with this puzzle. But at 12 minutes a room, I can't ever see myself making a call to interrupt the adventure with a complaint.


So bring it up in the Epilogue room, or after you exit the Epilogue room into the storyscape.

I get that with a 12 minute timer in each room, any delay is making it worse.

the counter point is that without Talking to the wronged party directly, it's hard to know what happened, and thus hard to be sure we're able to address the issue at hand while it's 1. Relevant, and 2. Able to improve the runs that follow. Plus it affords us the opportunity to insure you the customer feel we've done something, and your concerns were properly addressed. (If not, then by all means, escalate the matter from an AC to a Director)


I have to say. I am at least glad that the puzzle room DMs this year KNOW THE SOLUTION TO THEIR OWN PUZZLES unlike last year (I'm looking at you, gas room) and I was VERY happy to see less mechanical breakable puzzles this year but I was VERY upset by how puzzle rooms are handled this year.

If there is a limit to how many tries you have before losing the treasure it needs to be WRITTEN ON THE WALL NEXT TO THE TREASURE MARK easily viewable.

If damage is unavoidable it needs to be ELDRITCH or PUSH damage, nothing else, no flavoring. We KNOW those can't be avoided.

If a puzzle has a # of tries allowed before loss of loot that number needs to be higher than 0 ON ALL DIFFICULTIES. Should be able to make 1 mistake on Nightmare, 2 on Hardcore, 3 on Normal.

If a monster has massive immunities to magic they should not ALSO have massive AC. A party needs at least 1 valid way to deal with an enemy.


Agreed.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #78

Arcanist Kolixela wrote: If there is a limit to how many tries you have before losing the treasure it needs to be WRITTEN ON THE WALL NEXT TO THE TREASURE MARK easily viewable.

If damage is unavoidable it needs to be ELDRITCH or PUSH damage, nothing else, no flavoring. We KNOW those can't be avoided.

If a puzzle has a # of tries allowed before loss of loot that number needs to be higher than 0 ON ALL DIFFICULTIES. Should be able to make 1 mistake on Nightmare, 2 on Hardcore, 3 on Normal.

If a monster has massive immunities to magic they should not ALSO have massive AC. A party needs at least 1 valid way to deal with an enemy.


I'll make sure this gets passed on to Jeff.
-Master Li Lou Bahn, Terror of the East, Master of Shadows, Pillager of the province of Ch'in, Mandarin of the Emporer Shou Wei, Ambassador to the foreign devils of the West, and the most dangerous ninja in all of Greyhawk."cause I'm the only ninja in all of Gwehawk!!!"

2015 Adventure Coordinator for Sable Gauntlet

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #79

Barry Welling wrote:

Arcanist Kolixela wrote: If there is a limit to how many tries you have before losing the treasure it needs to be WRITTEN ON THE WALL NEXT TO THE TREASURE MARK easily viewable.

If damage is unavoidable it needs to be ELDRITCH or PUSH damage, nothing else, no flavoring. We KNOW those can't be avoided.

If a puzzle has a # of tries allowed before loss of loot that number needs to be higher than 0 ON ALL DIFFICULTIES. Should be able to make 1 mistake on Nightmare, 2 on Hardcore, 3 on Normal.

If a monster has massive immunities to magic they should not ALSO have massive AC. A party needs at least 1 valid way to deal with an enemy.


I'll make sure this gets passed on to Jeff.


Mind Flayer was cool in theory but not executed well.
In general a boss that is immune to 75% of all attacks sent at it AND has an AC so high half the slides not legendaried out miss is just a Negative Play Experience.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #80

If there is a limit to how many tries you have before losing the treasure it needs to be WRITTEN ON THE WALL NEXT TO THE TREASURE MARK easily viewable.


I would add to this that not all puzzles need a # tries mechanic. This too should be clearly noted.

My personal feeling is that if there are a small number of possible solutions, limiting the number of tries makes sense to provide an incentive to think before brute forcing and standing around with nothing to do for 10 minutes.

If there are too many possible solutions for brute force to be an option, let the party experiment and try different things without risking the treasure. That's better than paralyzing people with fear of making a mistake and costing the 9 other people in the group, or causing the party to lose interest after a few mistakes are made.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #81

Arcanist Kolixela wrote: I have to say. I am at least glad that the puzzle room DMs this year KNOW THE SOLUTION TO THEIR OWN PUZZLES unlike last year (I'm looking at you, gas room) and I was VERY happy to see less mechanical breakable puzzles this year but I was VERY upset by how puzzle rooms are handled this year.

If there is a limit to how many tries you have before losing the treasure it needs to be WRITTEN ON THE WALL NEXT TO THE TREASURE MARK easily viewable.

If damage is unavoidable it needs to be ELDRITCH or PUSH damage, nothing else, no flavoring. We KNOW those can't be avoided.

If a puzzle has a # of tries allowed before loss of loot that number needs to be higher than 0 ON ALL DIFFICULTIES. Should be able to make 1 mistake on Nightmare, 2 on Hardcore, 3 on Normal.

If a monster has massive immunities to magic they should not ALSO have massive AC. A party needs at least 1 valid way to deal with an enemy.


I agree. Those suggestions are 100% good ideas.

I was also pleased with the lack of technical difficulty in this year's puzzles. That switch puzzle from last year was so frustrating. We'd solved all but one panel, and tried every possible combination on the final panel. "OK, DM, are you sure it's not burned out or something?" "No, it works." "Well, if it does indeed work, can you verify that by flipping the correct combination?" No, the DM apparently didn't know the correct combination, but was still insistent that it was working, with no way to prove that. I seriously think by that by that time (late Saturday or Sunday) one of the lights/switches was no longer working properly.

So, yeah, none of that this year.

I've also never heard of being penalized for guessing the right answer before this year. I really don't like the idea of having to "show your work" on a puzzle solution unless it fits the story. If a Sphinx is grilling you and you can't explain yourself, then, yeah, it might well deny you a treasure. But a spider web can't deny you a treasure for failing to explain your answer. There's just no story-based reason for that.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #82

Oh and one little gripe.

If you are using letters for a puzzle PLEASE dear lord make sure the J and L have a clearly unique look to them! Losing several minutes because that J is actually an L is not cool.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #83

I think it's pretty clear that J and L were meant to be confusing in the web puzzle. It's like the MOON puzzle from a few years back. That was meant to add difficulty, and I don't have a problem with that.

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Re: What to do about bad DMs? 5 years 2 months ago #84

Jason Brown wrote: I think it's pretty clear that J and L were meant to be confusing in the web puzzle. It's like the MOON puzzle from a few years back. That was meant to add difficulty, and I don't have a problem with that.


Correct.... that confusion was deliberate
-Master Li Lou Bahn, Terror of the East, Master of Shadows, Pillager of the province of Ch'in, Mandarin of the Emporer Shou Wei, Ambassador to the foreign devils of the West, and the most dangerous ninja in all of Greyhawk."cause I'm the only ninja in all of Gwehawk!!!"

2015 Adventure Coordinator for Sable Gauntlet

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