GM Troubles and Group Searches

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I've been part of a small RPGA group for the last few months, generally playing with the same core players (with minor additions or rotations here and there).  The problem is, I'm having some personal issues with the way the GM has been handling his modules.  In particular, I feel that he's unprepared for the sessions (as he often says that he hasn't read the module yet, as we're starting).  He also seems to have some reading comprehension issues, because he often mis-reads information to the point of blatantly changing the flow of the game (melee attacks become ranged, bursts and blasts get confused, abilities that end after a turn last indefinitely or need saving throws, etc).  There are other issues I don't care to go into at this time.

As a player, I'm getting to the point where I would really like to find a new group to play with, but I kind of stumbled across THIS one, and don't know where to start looking for other ones, with openings for fresh blood.

Also, I don't want to get him in trouble, but am I neither that comfortable telling him about these problems (which, in my opinion, are glaring), nor letting him continue hurting his players (and the game) by not learning from his mistakes.  Is there any method of reporting player-dissatisfaction with a GM's performance?
These kinds of issues are really between you and the DM and whoever is hosting the games (if it were in a gaming store, for example). There isn't any real way to "report" him for being a bad DM. If he were committing serious infractions it might be possible, but it generally takes something serious for a DM to be banned, especially these days.

At the very least, you can step away from the game. You can also try to approach the subject in a respectful manner and see what happens. For example, the issue of preparation is a big one. It likely exacerbates all the other issues, so you might start there. It is also a fairly easy issue to use as an excuse to stop playing, in that it isn't very personal in nature.

There are usually gamers in just about any area, though you may have to hunt a bit. Posts in gaming stores, Meetup, Yahoo groups for the state (even old LG regional Yahoo groups), ENWorld Gamers Seeking Gamers, WotC forums for finding players... these can all be helpful in locating a new group. It usually takes a while, but should yield results.

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There isn't any real way to "report" him for being a bad DM. If he were committing serious infractions it might be possible, but it generally takes something serious for a DM to be banned, especially these days.



Just to add that "serious infractions" would be along the lines of cheating or intentionally mis-reporting game play.  Lack of preparation, or not getting the game rules right, simply doesn't rise to the level of something that the RPGA itself would want you to report (or would act upon). 

As Alphastream notes, it *could* be something that you would bring up with your event organizer.  However, if your event organizer also happens to be your DM (a very common arrangement with small LFR groups), you're kind of stuck.
"Of course [Richard] has a knife. He always has a knife. We all have knives. It's 1183, and we're barbarians!" - Eleanor of Aquitaine, "The Lion in Winter"
The Dm won't get in trouble. But maybe it's time someone else volunteered to DM?

DMing- like most skills- is something you can be very good at, and also very bad at.. and sometimes both.

Just to add that "serious infractions" would be along the lines of cheating or intentionally mis-reporting game play.  Lack of preparation, or not getting the game rules right, simply doesn't rise to the level of something that the RPGA itself would want you to report (or would act upon). 

As Alphastream notes, it *could* be something that you would bring up with your event organizer.  However, if your event organizer also happens to be your DM (a very common arrangement with small LFR groups), you're kind of stuck.



And that doesn't even make a difference.. there is an 'organizer' in our area that has been sanctioning and reporting Fake events for almost 2 years...  He was reported, and absolutely nothing was done.  He is still sanctioning and reporting fake events (as recent as Dark Sun Game Day).

I had someone who was going to start DMing LFR on a regular basis in our FLGS decide to not do it at all due to this lack of action.  

Very Sad
there is a pretty decent online community of LFR players if you want to try that out.
Thanks for the suggestions, folks... I figure that the best option is to approach him directly (probably via e-mail is most descrete), and just point out the things that seem inappropriate to me, that I feel he should change.  Honestly, the fun is leaving the game... and when that happens, it's time to change or leave.

Guess we'll see what happens within a week or so...
Thanks for the suggestions, folks... I figure that the best option is to approach him directly (probably via e-mail is most descrete), and just point out the things that seem inappropriate to me, that I feel he should change.  Honestly, the fun is leaving the game... and when that happens, it's time to change or leave.

Guess we'll see what happens within a week or so...

Talking with a player about something sensitive like this is best done face-to-face and definitely not via E-mail. It is surprisingly easy to misintepret the written word, and since you are not there to correct the mistake things can go sour real quick. Just talk to him privately face-to-face.

I to reported someone for event fraud and nothing was done. I have scaled back my play and DMing at public events because of this, I have lost faith in the powers that be will do something to those organizers that either falsely report events or misreport them. The organizer in question is still doing it as he is set to run the essentials this weekend at one location but is accually running it another location. This is not right and something should be done about it.
Also, DME does allow for the DM to make some changes and adjustments to the monsters, encounters, etc. to make the game more interesting or challenging or less of a challenge, if he or she thinks it's needed or wanted by the group.

Are you sure the DM isn't using this to modify the monster's powers to make them more interesting?
See if someone else wants to run the mods or run them yourself. People who DM are doing it for the enjoyment of the other people at the game. If he is the only one that will run the mods then you will have to deal with the fact that he has little time to prepare. When I run mods it takes me over 5 hours to get everything done; get correct dungeon tiles, correct or closely enough miniatures, print the mod, read the mod a few times, prep the encounters to understand the different aspects of the combats.

Remember one last thing, running a game is not a paid position and you are not paying to play.

See if someone else wants to run the mods or run them yourself. People who DM are doing it for the enjoyment of the other people at the game. If he is the only one that will run the mods then you will have to deal with the fact that he has little time to prepare. When I run mods it takes me over 5 hours to get everything done; get correct dungeon tiles, correct or closely enough miniatures, print the mod, read the mod a few times, prep the encounters to understand the different aspects of the combats.

Remember one last thing, running a game is not a paid position and you are not paying to play.




This depends on where you are playing.  Some game stores may require a small fee to cover costs of a table being used which could otherwise be used by people playing some *other* game which they just bought at the store (such as M:tG or Yu.Gi.Oh.)
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