D&D 5E Rime of the Frostmaiden Post-Mortem (Spoilers)

BenTheFerg

Explorer
Hmm, they were specifically calling out how that Justin guy was fixing them, so this sounds like hyperbole.


Actually, I think it's a fairly easy bet that when people buy a campaign from the people who publish the game, they want to buy an exemplary product. This sounds like you can't actually refute their point so instead you're attacking their ability to speak for "folks". If you want to claim that most people wish to spend money to buy a flawed product, I think the burden of proof is on you.
Thanks Blue, Swedish chef, Ancalagon & Greg. Glad the cavalry arrived!🥳

I have been enjoying Rime. But, I am glad I did not run it out of the tin.

Being one of the undead (I am a teacher of 16-18s) + not as young as I used to be + am a parent means I am time poor, and thus would really like a campaign to be ready to run as is. Like Curse of Strahd nearly was or Phandelver. Or stuff from Kobold Press tends to be.
Covid disruption (illness), stress from the pandemic & general fatigue, plus in the UK, being thrown to the wolves by the Govt over excessive workload/ lack of a catchup plan/no extra teachers/no ££, have all been taking their toll on me & the group. Fortunately Rime has a Roll20 module. Unfortunately, uploading stuff, fiddling with content like npc/critter stats, creating new floorplan maps for sandboxing/ 'frostboxing'.... all have added to the time factor... am very glad we are in a dungeon (caves of hunger).... but am aware I need to create new maps for Ythryn. Battle maps that should be in the Roll20 package TBH. Oh well!

Thanks for the support. Discovered the Unfollow button, so have used that, so the person who was arguing for the sake of arguing can't see my posts or me theirs. Seemed like a win win!

Hoping to run either Radiant Citadel or Kobolds Shadow planar adventures when they come out in the summer.

May your dice roll true & folks like JA continue to help us construct fun & intellectually interesting games and 👍🏼
 

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However,
1. the failures in the internal logic of their campaigns (which Justin Alexander ruthlessly points out) plus
Sorry Ben, but I really have to call you on this one. A lot of things have a break in logic. A lot. And it's how the DM portrays it that determines whether it is a big deal or not. I will put money you could run a dozen groups through RotFM with skilled DMs and only one or two would be struck by that "failure in the internal logic."
As a DM, you can read it straight through, and that makes a huge difference than playing it for 20 four-hour sessions.
 

Burnside

Space Jam Confirmed
Supporter
Sorry Ben, but I really have to call you on this one. A lot of things have a break in logic. A lot. And it's how the DM portrays it that determines whether it is a big deal or not. I will put money you could run a dozen groups through RotFM with skilled DMs and only one or two would be struck by that "failure in the internal logic."
As a DM, you can read it straight through, and that makes a huge difference than playing it for 20 four-hour sessions.

My players consistently spot the plot holes in WotC's official adventures and I am frequently in the position of having to patch those holes so that they don't come off as "big deals" to the players. If I ran most of the adventures as written, my players would become disengaged and frustrated by the holes.
 

My players consistently spot the plot holes in WotC's official adventures and I am frequently in the position of having to patch those holes so that they don't come off as "big deals" to the players. If I ran most of the adventures as written, my players would become disengaged and frustrated by the holes.
That may be true. I am just speaking from my experience, the "jarring plot holes" can be found in every single adventure path written since 4e. Anyone can spot it reading through the books. Playing on the other hand often has a way of obscuring those holes. And with a tiny bit of DM patchwork, they are even harder to find.
 

Retreater

Legend
That may be true. I am just speaking from my experience, the "jarring plot holes" can be found in every single adventure path written since 4e. Anyone can spot it reading through the books. Playing on the other hand often has a way of obscuring those holes. And with a tiny bit of DM patchwork, they are even harder to find.
That's true - but it was a decision for the author(s) of Rime of the Frost Maiden to write the Ten Towns have been locked in eternal night and winter for "years." It's not like it was an accidental choice - like they meant "months" instead of "years."
Why, as a writer, would one choose something like that? Because it would be more mysterious? It would seem more of a reason to motivate the party? (Even though the party is supposed to trek around and do pointless side quests for the first half of the book.)
It was a decision. And the writers should have known that it was illogical, and by that extension, some DMs would need to change it. So why put it in there?
Obvious issues that need DM work, even if it requires only a little bit of DM finesse, should be caught by the writers and editors.
 

Swedish Chef

Explorer
That's true - but it was a decision for the author(s) of Rime of the Frost Maiden to write the Ten Towns have been locked in eternal night and winter for "years." It's not like it was an accidental choice - like they meant "months" instead of "years."
Why, as a writer, would one choose something like that? Because it would be more mysterious? It would seem more of a reason to motivate the party? (Even though the party is supposed to trek around and do pointless side quests for the first half of the book.)
It was a decision. And the writers should have known that it was illogical, and by that extension, some DMs would need to change it. So why put it in there?
Obvious issues that need DM work, even if it requires only a little bit of DM finesse, should be caught by the writers and editors.
The time frame for the weather is one of the larger plot holes for us. Another is that the three largest towns, all supposedly led by good aligned NPCs, have somehow managed to convince the entire population base that live sacrifices are necessary for their survival. Despite 7 other towns sacrificing "warmth" and foodstuffs with the exact same non-results.

Honestly, the entire party wants to stop Auril and then go to war against those three towns! :unsure::p And, as my character has just been elected Speaker in Good Mead, we just wind up doing it to!
 

BenTheFerg

Explorer
Sorry Ben, but I really have to call you on this one. A lot of things have a break in logic. A lot. And it's how the DM portrays it that determines whether it is a big deal or not. I will put money you could run a dozen groups through RotFM with skilled DMs and only one or two would be struck by that "failure in the internal logic."
As a DM, you can read it straight through, and that makes a huge difference than playing it for 20 four-hour sessions.
You are going to 'call me out'? For spouting heresy? For overcharging? For lying like my PM in Parliament? 🤷🏻‍♂️🤣

Yes, I spotted the flaws, as did others in Rime & other campaigns (I wrote it in the plural, the worst offenders being Descent into Avernus & Dragon Heist).

All I am/ others are asking for is that WotC, who are the megacorp of Rpg companies, sort this out since it improves player & GM experience:
A. Not all GMs are experienced like you Scott - read earlier thread
B. Some are like me time poor
C. Some errors are so numerous & fundamental they make running it difficult/ impossible (I am referring here to BG: DiA & W: DH not Rime which is mainly fixable) . Granted, JA has done remixes of 2... these are longer than the originals. Without his help you would've been better off writing your own campaign. You've wasted your money.

Other campaigns, eg the dungeon crawls of the Abomination Vaults for PF2e (coming to 5e later this year & which is massive & epic!) or the Scarlet Citadel don't have these glaring problems. Neither does the insanely massive Masks of Nyarlathotep for Call of Cthulhu.

I don't see why a larger company like WotC can't be held to the same standards of less wealthy game companies. If they can make sure their products are internally consistent within the rules of the game, why not WotC?

On issue of games set in the cold, 2 Call of Cthulhu campaigns come to mind. Both worked really hard at realism in their game simulation of the North & South Poles: 'Beyond the Mountains of Madness' is one, and the other by Pagan Publishing 'Walker in the Wastes'. Neither had the problems Rime has with realistically portraying the effects of the cold. Both thoroughly researched.

I don't understand why you are complaining at me! All I am asking for is better editing of the game in terms of does it make sense/ hold together or will it collapse if played by anyone with an IQ higher than 10 year old?
 
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The time frame for the weather is one of the larger plot holes for us. Another is that the three largest towns, all supposedly led by good aligned NPCs, have somehow managed to convince the entire population base that live sacrifices are necessary for their survival. Despite 7 other towns sacrificing "warmth" and foodstuffs with the exact same non-results.

Honestly, the entire party wants to stop Auril and then go to war against those three towns! :unsure::p And, as my character has just been elected Speaker in Good Mead, we just wind up doing it to!
As I have pointed out several times, the fact that the Ten Towns has survived for years of eternal winter proves the sacrifices DO work. Auril, in her role as preserver, is preserving the towns. Not to mention she is using the sacrifices to power her divine batteries.
 

Other campaigns, eg the dungeon crawls of the Abomination Vaults for PF2e (coming to 5e later this year & which is massive & epic!) or the Scarlet Citadel don't have these glaring problems.
Played Abomination Vaults. It absolutely has these same glaring problems. Including a completely stocked dungeon that has never been explored that is 15-minutes from a medium sized town on the most densely populated island in Golarion and several hundred apex predators living within a single complex in apparent balance.
 

Azuresun

Adventurer
  • Revel's End prison is such a cool idea. Too bad there's nothing going on there in terms of having an adventure. Also, it has working magical light and heat and a working port - should be flooded with refugees from the Ten Towns. Somebody will write a great adventure for this location.

The one I have in mind was Avarice attempting a prison break with the cult and some summoned yugoloths (which the PC's might be on either side of), to recruit Gant to her side.
 

Played Abomination Vaults. It absolutely has these same glaring problems. Including a completely stocked dungeon that has never been explored that is 15-minutes from a medium sized town on the most densely populated island in Golarion and several hundred apex predators living within a single complex in apparent balance.
That's very common in D&D. Really, if you want to go looking for plot holes, the entire multiverse fall apart.
 

Retreater

Legend
Played Abomination Vaults. It absolutely has these same glaring problems. Including a completely stocked dungeon that has never been explored that is 15-minutes from a medium sized town on the most densely populated island in Golarion and several hundred apex predators living within a single complex in apparent balance.
Yes, and I even wrote a Post-Mortem about that one too, if anyone is interested...


Between the two, I would hold Rime to higher standards for the following reasons:
1) 5e is a more established system. It should be very well oiled at this point.
2) Wizards has the biggest game on the market and should have the resources for the best writers and editorial staff.
3) When an adventure is billed as a "simple dungeon crawl" it gets more leeway from me than a massive campaign built on decades of lore.
4) Players can at least leave the Abomination Vaults. If you get tired of the monster hotel design, go to another adventure. Once you start playing Rime, you are trapped and can't leave the North.
 

Once you start playing Rime, you are trapped and can't leave the North.
Err, no. It doesn't say anywhere PCs can't leave. It might be very difficult to take the pass across the mountains, but there are plenty of abilities PCs could use to make it easier, especially as they gain levels. Or they could take a ship from Revel's End, a whale from Angajuk's Bell, or a Griffin from Skytower Shelter. Or take one of several entrances to the Underdark. Or even leave on an alien spaceship!
 

wicked cool

Adventurer
Thanks Blue, Swedish chef, Ancalagon & Greg. Glad the cavalry arrived!🥳

I have been enjoying Rime. But, I am glad I did not run it out of the tin.

Being one of the undead (I am a teacher of 16-18s) + not as young as I used to be + am a parent means I am time poor, and thus would really like a campaign to be ready to run as is. Like Curse of Strahd nearly was or Phandelver. Or stuff from Kobold Press tends to be.
Covid disruption (illness), stress from the pandemic & general fatigue, plus in the UK, being thrown to the wolves by the Govt over excessive workload/ lack of a catchup plan/no extra teachers/no ££, have all been taking their toll on me & the group. Fortunately Rime has a Roll20 module. Unfortunately, uploading stuff, fiddling with content like npc/critter stats, creating new floorplan maps for sandboxing/ 'frostboxing'.... all have added to the time factor... am very glad we are in a dungeon (caves of hunger).... but am aware I need to create new maps for Ythryn. Battle maps that should be in the Roll20 package TBH. Oh well!

Thanks for the support. Discovered the Unfollow button, so have used that, so the person who was arguing for the sake of arguing can't see my posts or me theirs. Seemed like a win win!

Hoping to run either Radiant Citadel or Kobolds Shadow planar adventures when they come out in the summer.

May your dice roll true & folks like JA continue to help us construct fun & intellectually interesting games and 👍🏼
"Like Curse of Strahd nearly was or Phandelver". Or stuff from Kobold Press tends to be-they need go to back to this . Even the new Mercer adventure suffers from not out of box
 

Swedish Chef

Explorer
Err, no. It doesn't say anywhere PCs can't leave. It might be very difficult to take the pass across the mountains, but there are plenty of abilities PCs could use to make it easier, especially as they gain levels. Or they could take a ship from Revel's End, a whale from Angajuk's Bell, or a Griffin from Skytower Shelter. Or take one of several entrances to the Underdark. Or even leave on an alien spaceship!
I have not read the module. We're only just at the beginning of it - literally just completed the Good Mead section. From what we understand, as explained by the DM, the Ten Towns populations have been trapped for 2 years.

But that is a huge, inconsistent plot hole nonetheless. If the populations can get out with a bit of effort, why have they remained behind in order to starve/be "batteries" for Auril? How/why are they living more or less "normal" lives under such extreme conditions? If the conditions really aren't that extreme and commerce is able to continue with relative ease, why bother to make any sacrifices at all?

As I stated in another post, the premise behind the module is interesting. The implementation is less than ideal. Are we, as a group, upset that we paid for the module (we all split the cost of the Roll20 subscription/module). Nope. Is the DM spending time reviewing the module and working through alternative suggestions to close some of the glaring plot holes? Absolutely. I did the same with Avernus. My group loved that module as well, despite some of the plot difficulties.

The general complaint I see with most modules from WOTC at the moment is that they don't seem to go through a vetting process to try and remove the really big plot holes. Most DMs don't worry about the small inconsistencies. Most players don't care about the small inconsistencies. Every module back to the beginning has varying degrees of issues in terms of plot holes. People have complained about them all that time. I think it is fair that they request that WOTC improve the process a bit more, especially with their more structured release schedule giving them more time to edit the books.
 

Retreater

Legend
Err, no. It doesn't say anywhere PCs can't leave. It might be very difficult to take the pass across the mountains, but there are plenty of abilities PCs could use to make it easier, especially as they gain levels. Or they could take a ship from Revel's End, a whale from Angajuk's Bell, or a Griffin from Skytower Shelter. Or take one of several entrances to the Underdark. Or even leave on an alien spaceship!
All passages out of the North are frozen. There is no trade. Sure - the party (once they're high enough level) can just teleport, but that's a far cry from "just walking back to town, less than 15 minutes away" like in Abomination Vaults.
The ideas you suggest - while they're all possible - are things that aren't readily apparent to the group.
1. Let's go up north and hope to find a ship that can navigate the frozen waters - because even the people who live in the Ten Towns don't use this resource (otherwise, most people would've fled the area).
2. Because players think "oh, there's probably a sentient whale up here that we can use as a submarine."
3. Let's climb up in the mountains and hope that there's a tribe of goliaths who train griffins who will let us use some to make a foolish expedition into the frozen darkness of perpetual night to hope that we can make it before we freeze to death.
4. This random passage to the Underdark MUST lead out of the North and into warmer climates.
5. My group actually thought about leaving on that spaceship, joining a colonizing force of mind flayers. To them it sounded like a better adventure than Rime.
 

Retreater

Legend
As I stated in another post, the premise behind the module is interesting. The implementation is less than ideal. Are we, as a group, upset that we paid for the module (we all split the cost of the Roll20 subscription/module). Nope. Is the DM spending time reviewing the module and working through alternative suggestions to close some of the glaring plot holes? Absolutely. I did the same with Avernus. My group loved that module as well, despite some of the plot difficulties.
This is an adventure that I ran on Roll20. It could be just me, but I find that running on a VTT, I feel less empowered to change up the adventure. You've gotta make new maps, alter NPC statblocks, load up new encounters. It's so much more work than what I would do at an in-person game.
When an adventure has sloppy design and makes more work for me (even on top of the work of figuring out how to smooth it over), it frustrates me.
My experience with Rime was sort of the last straw about using official Wizards adventures. I can't see wanting to run any of them in the future.
 

BenTheFerg

Explorer
This is an adventure that I ran on Roll20. It could be just me, but I find that running on a VTT, I feel less empowered to change up the adventure. You've gotta make new maps, alter NPC statblocks, load up new encounters. It's so much more work than what I would do at an in-person game.
When an adventure has sloppy design and makes more work for me (even on top of the work of figuring out how to smooth it over), it frustrates me.
My experience with Rime was sort of the last straw about using official Wizards adventures. I can't see wanting to run any of them in the future.
Yes.
I have been running Rime on Roll20.
Did so to save the effort of all the bureaucracy of adding material into Roll20 which I was doing for my Eberron homebrew.
Thought to myself: I'll run a premade campaign since adding stuff on Roll20 is a be-atch!
That went well! 🤣🤣🤣
 

All passages out of the North are frozen. There is no trade. Sure - the party (once they're high enough level) can just teleport, but that's a far cry from "just walking back to town, less than 15 minutes away" like in Abomination Vaults.
The ideas you suggest - while they're all possible - are things that aren't readily apparent to the group.
1. Let's go up north and hope to find a ship that can navigate the frozen waters - because even the people who live in the Ten Towns don't use this resource (otherwise, most people would've fled the area).
2. Because players think "oh, there's probably a sentient whale up here that we can use as a submarine."
3. Let's climb up in the mountains and hope that there's a tribe of goliaths who train griffins who will let us use some to make a foolish expedition into the frozen darkness of perpetual night to hope that we can make it before we freeze to death.
4. This random passage to the Underdark MUST lead out of the North and into warmer climates.
5. My group actually thought about leaving on that spaceship, joining a colonizing force of mind flayers. To them it sounded like a better adventure than Rime.
None of them are easy, but if players decide to focus their attention on leaving it's an achievable goal. But it's a matter of matching your choice of adventure to your players, either by knowing the stuff they like, or discussing the tone and themes in session zero. Rime of the Frostmaiden is a great adventure - if it's the sort of thing your players like. Just like every other adventure. I wouldn't run Abomination Vaults or Dungeon of the Mad Mage with my players, I know they dislike big dungeon crawls. And one of my players loathes Curse of Strahd, having had it fail twice. Poor DMing would be to choose an unsuitable adventure for their group and then blame the adventure rather than their poor choice.

Call of the Netherdeep is not a bad adventure by any means, but there are some groups I just know it wouldn't work for.
 
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I find that running on a VTT, I feel less empowered to change up the adventure. You've gotta make new maps, alter NPC statblocks, load up new encounters.
This is true, but I find it helps to not buy the adventure through the VTT, rather to transfer it over from another medium. Then you can do the customisation at the same time. It's a lot more work that way though.
 

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