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Not the encounters, though. They actually enjoyed being spellcasters and managing to get information on an encounter in advance so they could prep spells accordingly. Example, knowing they were going to be going up against a red dragon, thanks to the cyclopes, and then being ready with appropriate spells (mostly cone of cold, in their case, but still).
No, it was the hex crawl that did it in. With the time limit, plus the vast majority of hexes have literally nothing in them unless you crit for a clue, left the players bored and frustrated. And this was using the original, lower DCs (I have no idea how a player is supposed to crit on the updated higher DCs outside of a 20). Even random encounters would probably have made this better, as bad as random encounters can be.
So we only played half the chapter, they gave up, I told them what encounters they missed or were coming up, and they went "oh, we can cheese that by doing x/y/z" and figured nothing of value was lost. Whether their strategies could have worked or not, I don't know, and that's not the point of this complaint.
The point is that hex crawl with so few spaces that do anything is boring. *I* get that its supposed to be a flashback to Kingmaker stuff, but I'm the only one in the group that played and enjoyed Kingmaker, and even then, the hex crawl was the worst part.
We'll be playing chapter 5 since one player is excited to try the grey maiden archetype there - but that very well might be the end of our testing.