Problems with a store owner who overrules the DM

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A reader left a comment on my blog (Dungeon’s regarding an issue they’re having with their store owner. I was hoping that the fine folks that contribute to these forums regularly could help out with some advice on how they think the commenter should handle the situation described below. I’d really appreciate it if any store owners on these forums could chime in as well. Thank you.

Here’s the link to the post and comment if anyone wants to comment back to the poster directly. In my response I’ll include a link back to this thread for his convenience.

I have a problem with a Store Representative looking for a piece of advice. I told my players that this encounter season they would be either Drow or one of the races mentioned in the Council of Spiders book. They did what I requested and created their Drow, and seem to have been having fun with it, even those who normally hate playing drow. Then I had to stop DMing and my son had to take over, and when a new player came in saying he was demanding to play his 4th lvl ELF, in this encounter my son politely told him, that the race couldn’t be used for this encounter season, and the level definitely not. Player then went over DM’s head to Store rep, who overruled the DM and said, no worries go ahead and use the elf. But no lvl 4. The guy is going to be disguised as a drow. He also told the DM no one would be allowed to check to see if he was in fact a Drow at all. So what should we do? Tell the store to stick their program? Is there an alternative to those who would basically give players whatever makes them happy at the expense of another player? Help.

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Hmm... the program organizer should have final say over permitted races/classes. However, it's my opinion that the DM *always* has the right-- nay, responsibility-- to expose PCs' secrets! If you play a despised race, in disguise, as the DM you should always make that something that gets revealed. ESPECIALLY in a campaign of backstabbery.

Now, my suggestion would be to talk to the organizer and specifically ask what's going on, why they've given this player special treatment. There may be something going on, and with only 2 sessions left in the season, see if there's a way to leave the elf in the party, and give anyone with high insight a chance to pierce his disguise. Once revealed, let the party decide how to deal with the elf. They might kill him, or they might decide to spare him as being valuable to their goals.
Personally if that player showed up at my table (I am just a player this season) my Avenger would kill him dead. Yep, I would player kill him. But that doesn't solve the problem with the store rep.

This is an issue that should have been worked out when the DM took on the DMing duties. I would never submit to a store owner over ruling my DMs or subverting my position as coordinator.

Before I took on both jobs I made sure there was a clear chain of command between me and the store's owner. Angel (the owner) trusted me and would back my play. We talk about the season before, during and after.

All I can say is, talk with the owner and see if you can negociate a different relationship. If not, then the only other options is leaving. Really that is it.

My two coppers,

Bryan Blumklotz
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