I'm going to a run a one shot for some of my friends, some experienced, some completely new players and I want to use the Rotating Labyrinth featured in one of the DMB episodes. I'm swapping out the monster encounters to something I can dial into a story I want to tell though, rather than the plot provided.
One concern I have is if they'll be able to navigate the maze and how to do this in character. It seems like I should show them the entire maze uncovered, for one it's really cool, secondly I'm not sure how I as a player would be able to navigate the maze without drawing my own map as we progressed which would be pretty impossible with the rotating maze.
Another concern is I am not sure how everyone will react to puzzles in the game, so I need to be able to keep players who might not be as interested in navigating the maze engaged.
So how would you handle maze navigation for players? How would you drop them hints if they get stuck and keep them engaged in the puzzle?
Swapping out monsters and filling the rooms to suit your group and your story is a good idea. I've run the rotating labyrinth only twice. In both instances, the players were relatives who I knew would get into trying to figure out how to map the thing. Also in both cases, a little ways in, once they had heard the movement a couple times, I allowed the most religious member of the party to have a vision of the map to help them understand what they were up against. That will not be enough to encourage players like those who often comment on the map that they would just pick left until they found it. The fact of the matter is that those players have a good point. Mazes are terrible puzzles for the majority of people and this is a mapping challenge designed to challenge even the biggest maze lovers.
With that in mind, why do you want to use the Rotating Labyrinth? If it is because it looks cool, consider showing them some pictures and asking if they are as excited about it as you are and then running something more straightforward when they say no. As the creator of the Rotating Labyrinth, I can say that it needs a serious rework before I can recommend the average table runs it (and the whole moving maze concept may just be flawed at its core). Drivethrurpg has a lot of good, pay what you want options. An Ogre and His Cake is a good one for new players just looking to have a fun and funny adventure as it does a good job of introducing the idea that there are often non-combat paths available. If you want something more serious and are willing to give me another chance, my newest one-shot has a lot better DM support and is pay what you want: www.drivethrurpg.com/product/306674/The-Missing-Watchmen-of-Rotstone-Light It still has some puzzling twists and I tried to put something in for everyone on this one.