True Dungeon and Escape Room events question.
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Posted by lord thrifty the cromulent

Hi guys.  This year and last, I considered doing the True Dungeon and Escape Rooms, but I hesitated because I go to the convention alone.  I got the impression these were group activities.  Is there any way for a guy on his own to do these events?

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Posted by ajsears

I also thought about doing the True Dungeon as well.  However, I started noticing something that turned me off immediately. 

Did you know you can purchase True Dungeon items to take into the dungeon?  I was at one of the vendor booths and noticed a large number of tokens.  I like tokens so decided to look at them.  They were tokens for True Dungeon items.  When I looked at the price I was horrified.  There were single item tokens that cost more than $400 for the token.

I hate pay to win games.  If you have to pay to win, why play?  Just spend $20,000 and win every time.  Not much fun in that.

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Posted by lord thrifty the cromulent

Is that what those were?  $400 for a little cardboard chit that just helps you win some game?

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Posted by ajsears

From everything I could find out, yes that is what they are for.  So you can have special armor, weapons, magic items in the True Dungeon.

I think True Dungeon was an excellent idea. I also understand they need to make a profit to continue.  However, purchased loot crates is hated by everyone and these tokens are really no different then the Sony's micro-transactions that are hated by almost everyone.

This has turned me off every doing the True Dungeon.  It is disappointing as I think I would like it, but I don't support pay to win games.  Pay to play is ok.  Pay to Win is a sin.

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Posted by imsasun ajsears

ajsears wrote:
I also thought about doing the True Dungeon as well.  However, I started noticing something that turned me off immediately. 
Did you know you can purchase True Dungeon items to take into the dungeon?  I was at one of the vendor booths and noticed a large number of tokens.  I like tokens so decided to look at them.  They were tokens for True Dungeon items.  When I looked at the price I was horrified.  There were single item tokens that cost more than $400 for the token.
I hate pay to win games.  If you have to pay to win, why play?  Just spend $20,000 and win every time.  Not much fun in that.

a. These items are on the secondary market, True Dungeon doesn't sell them at those prices.  True Dungeon sells random packs of tokens, much like Magic the Gathering.

b. You don't need anything to play other than your starting token 10 pack, which is included as part of the event materials. 

c. "Pay to win" is a difficult concept to apply to a co-op game/experience event - you don't really "win" true dungeon any more than you "win" an RPG session - instead you have an experience - hopefully a fun one.
 

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Posted by imsasun imsasun

mstabosz wrote:
Hi guys.  This year and last, I considered doing the True Dungeon and Escape Rooms, but I hesitated because I go to the convention alone.  I got the impression these were group activities.  Is there any way for a guy on his own to do these events?

Yes, first off, many people show up in ones and twos and have a good time - though it can always go south, like any group activity conducted with 9 strangers.

If you can, meet up in the forums at truedungeon.com before tickets go on sale and try to find a group - there you can meet some folks of like mind and have some rapport with your team mates.

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Posted by aegoce ajsears

ajsears wrote:
From everything I could find out, yes that is what they are for.  So you can have special armor, weapons, magic items in the True Dungeon.
I think True Dungeon was an excellent idea. I also understand they need to make a profit to continue.  However, purchased loot crates is hated by everyone and these tokens are really no different then the Sony's micro-transactions that are hated by almost everyone.
This has turned me off every doing the True Dungeon.  It is disappointing as I think I would like it, but I don't support pay to win games.  Pay to play is ok.  Pay to Win is a sin.
There are different difficulties to the dungeon. Normal difficulty is balanced for people without any tokens prior to starting the event.  It creates kind of an odd system where it isn't pay to win but is more pay to get stuffyou think is neat if you want then request the right difficulty to not steamroll through the combats.  There are very few tokens that help in the puzzles.

The bottom 2 difficulties assume no tokens.  The 3rd probably needs a bunch of roughly $3 tokens totalling up to around $50 maybe per player or a very well organized group with fewer tokens.  The fourth probably needs to swap out a few tokens per person from tbe previous level with things that are around $100 each so maybe 300-700ish per person.  Fifth difficulty is probably $3000+ per person.

If sealed dungeons continue to be offered, all of this is moot as no tokens could be brought in.  The company does a good job at making a fun experience available at a lot of different budgets.

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Posted by lord thrifty the cromulent

$3000 per person on highest difficulty?  What is gained out of that?  I went to True Dungeon way back in 2004 and it wasn't $3000 worth of fun.

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Posted by aegoce

Practically there is very little different about what is gained between the difficulty settings. 

1 and 2 you get a completion item maybe worth maybe $1 long term (it starts higher but would degrade rapidly as there are more casual players than collectors).  3 you get a different completion item maybe worth maybe a little more ($10ish) that might degrade in price less rapidly as it tends to have a better function in the dungeon.  You also get more experience for your TD account, which eventually leads to a few thank you gifts from TD that it's hard to explain the value of but I don't think most people would consider significant.  4 you get both of the completion items, but no more experience than 3.  5 is new this year and was created because the very small number of people who try to collect everything were getting geared to the point level 4 wasn't challenging enough, there's no reward difference from 4.

I usually do difficulty 2 or 3, though I have tagged along on level 4 a few times with some loaned tokens from collectors so can't really fully explain it.  All I can say is that there's a pretty big overlap between people interested in gaming, people that get very passionate about their hobbies, and people that make a lot of money from their jobs.  Very few items (and really none of the super expensive ones) are lost by using them, so it's not like those people are spending $3000 per event.  Many of them run the same dungeons multiple times, sometimes to solve puzzles they couldn't get the first time, sometimes to play different classes or role play with different friends.

I do appreciate that there are people willing to shell out that kind of money though.  I think TD does put a lot of that back into trying to improve the quality of the event, it's not just all going to profit.

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Posted by lord thrifty the cromulent

Okay well if the premium items are reusable, that makes a little more sense.  I had it in my head that they were kind of like the upgrade things you buy in Candy Crush to get past a ridiculously difficult level.  None of that is expensive, but microtransactions have a tendency to add up.  Plus everything in that game is one time use, and all progress seems to be local to the device playing the game.  I'm sure that the sum total of the material things I own (not counting furniture or my car) are worth more than $3000 combined.

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Posted by armadilloal

Yeah, there are a few consumable items, but they tend to not be the valuable ones.  The only tokens that are consumable are the ones you'd expect to be by looking at them - potions, scrolls, arrows, etc.  With rare exception, ultra-rare and higher tokens are almost never consumable for obvious reasons - they're meant to hold value, so who in their right mind would turn them in?

I mean yeah, I guess you can consider a stack of healing potions to be pay-to-win, but a 10HP healing potion might cost like two bucks - nothing considered to the up-front price of the ticket.  And you have to take an action in combat to use one, so it's hard to kill the boss while just guzzling potions if that's your plan.

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Posted by selene314

True Dungeon goes better with a coordinated group who can decide in advance which class each player will equip for. Even a group of beginners using only the random tokens provided will save time by knowing what types of equipment to assign to each player.

As for Escape Rooms, groups often play together, but we are happy to add extra players.

These events sell out. If a group wants to exclude everyone else, they have to pay for the full set of tickets. Otherwise they know a stranger will join them.

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Posted by lord thrifty the cromulent

I'll bring it up next Spring when GenCon 2019 gets closer.  It'll probably be my last GenCon as I have plans to move out of Indianapolis next October and I don't like the convention enough to travel for it.  So I'll try to make some plans to do some of the things I was too cheap to do so far and stay the heck away from things I hate, like tabletop games.

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Posted by buffythecatslayer selene314

 These events sell out. If a group wants to exclude everyone else, they have to pay for the full set of tickets. Otherwise they know a stranger will join them.

That’s exactly what they do. Hardcore TDers will often buy all 10 tickets, then run with less so they can do the difficulty level they want, orto keep the group to people they know.

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Posted by lord thrifty the cromulent

What about the starship bridge simulators? I wouldn't mind giving those a try.  Can I grab some random strangers for that?

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Posted by aegoce lord thrifty the cromulent

mstabosz wrote:
What about the starship bridge simulators? I wouldn't mind giving those a try.  Can I grab some random strangers for that?
The event runner will form you into a team, you don't need to find your own people unless you really want to.  I actually don't know that it's possible to buy all the spots in a bridge simulator.  Most events limit you to 1 'extra ticket for me'.  True dungeon is an exception to that.

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Posted by buffythecatslayer

If you have enough Friends & Family, you could buy out some or most of the event by buying tickets for all of them.  But you're right, I think only TD allows you to buy all the tickets for yourself.  Which made no sense this year, as TD went to Electronic Ticketing, and anyone buying the tickets up would have had to transfer them all to the actual attendees.

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Posted by silverf0xx

Someone said above the TD has a forum on their site but if you really wanted to you could check out the thread I started for the D&D eXperience DM/Player Meet Up. 
You could start something like that here as GC2019 gets closer. Maybe even help others get groups put together.

I have played TD one time with some friends that now work with the TD crew at the summer cons. They had a small binder of tokens that they had earned  over the years. There was a handful that they had purchased but nothing outrageous. It was fun. I can see how the leveling thing would help for those that use their wallet as a weapon but for what I played I brought very little extra and still had fun. Just look for like minded people and give it a go. One time won't kill you and you might really like it.

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Posted by selene314 buffythecatslayer

dkrantz152 wrote:
If you have enough Friends & Family, you could buy out some or most of the event by buying tickets for all of them.  But you're right, I think only TD allows you to buy all the tickets for yourself.  Which made no sense this year, as TD went to Electronic Ticketing, and anyone buying the tickets up would have had to transfer them all to the actual attendees.

I was able to buy a full 8 ticket set from one of the escape room providers (the one in the JW), but the other one (on Meridian St.) had the limit of 1 extra ticket.

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Posted by insane

single guy and first time con goer this year and I did both TD and an escape room.  I did the sealed TD where you cant bring in outside tokens as I thought that would be a good start, was good fun and not being part of an established group was not an issue, had fun and plan on doing more TD next year.  

Escape room was an interesting experience but I can see it being a whole lot more fun if you had at least one buddy with you to work on solving the puzzle together with, also I found the rooms a little small and difficult to move around without getting into others personal space which can be uncomfortable with a group of total strangers.  I don't plan on doing escape room stuff again unless I am going in with at least one other person I know.

also hit the bridge simulators with an event ticket and then came back for more with generics.  was a lot of fun even on my own.  just realize that with a random group of people you are going to have those that don't take it seriously or are really bad at their job on the ship but if you can shrug off the silliness of some people and try not to get upset at losing the game, its a hoot to play

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