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Mansions of Madness: Second Edition» Forums » General

Subject: Player Scaling? rss

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soak man
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I know the rule book suggest you play with at LEAST 2 investigators (even if you are playing solo), but is there any info out there on how the scaling works?

I know in EH & AH, it is often best to use 4 investigators so that you can cover more ground but not quite trip the multiple gate spawns/outskirts limits difficulty. And in MoM, the more investigators you had, the more Threat the Keeper would generate so more bad stuff would happen more often (or just worse stuff).

I am likely going to play with 2 investigators most often, but I was curious about how scaling would affect the game comparatively. Is it harder or easier with 3, 4, or 5? It seems obvious that the more investigators you use, the more actions you have, and therefore the less turns it will take to complete objectives within the scenario. Does the turn limit change with the number of investigators, giving you more turns with fewer or less turn with more?

I would think it would have to, but I'd like to know if anyone knows for sure. That's the only downside to the app so far for me: the inability to know just how it calculates and adjusts events and the construction of the pool that the cards are drawn from. Even how starting items are determined and from what pool if they are randomized (other than Kate and Ashcan Pete).
 
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Chris J Davis
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Yes, the app handles scaling.
 
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soakman wrote:
That's the only downside to the app so far for me: the inability to know just how it calculates and adjusts events and the construction of the pool that the cards are drawn from. Even how starting items are determined and from what pool if they are randomized (other than Kate and Ashcan Pete).


I'd actually see that as a bonus. It's much harder to know exactly what's going on, and "game" the system. There could be all kinds of ways it could determine the difficulty / turn limits / number of monsters, etc.

eg. to balance specific characters, so if a particular combo appears OP, when they are selected they could be made to face tougher obstacles/monsters (without them actually being aware it's happening) in future updates to the app.

And there could be all kinds of subtle (or not so subtle) hints to the players about how long remains before Hell is unleashed, without requiring them to be aware (and manually track themselves) a definitive "number of turns remaining." The number of turns could actually even change as the story progresses & based on investigator actions, again not necessarily requiring them to be aware of the change.

That kind of thing could go a long way to making the scenarios more replayable, as you try to work out the best approaches.

Of course, that sounds quite ambitious, and I wouldn't at all be surprised if there's a more standard static turn limit behind the scenes, for example. And it's probably just simply tweaked at the start of the game based on the number of players, as you indicated, possibly along with monster spawns.

But even then, not having to know this stuff upfront (and having it printed in the rules) might keep things interesting for longer, in my opinion.
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Mariano Rico
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soakman wrote:
That's the only downside to the app so far for me: the inability to know just how it calculates and adjusts events and the construction of the pool that the cards are drawn from. Even how starting items are determined and from what pool if they are randomized (other than Kate and Ashcan Pete).


Funny. That is precisely one of the great advantages of the app for me. No player knows exactly how this is calculated so you really dont know what is coming to you. Builds up on the mystery part.
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Mariano Rico
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Pudsy wrote:
And there could be all kinds of subtle (or not so subtle) hints to the players about how long remains before Hell is unleashed, without requiring them to be aware (and manually track themselves) a definitive "number of turns remaining." The number of turns could actually even change as the story progresses & based on investigator actions, again not necessarily requiring them to be aware of the change.


The events happening in the Mythos turn actually do build up in tension as the game progresses. Something similar happens in the Descent app actually. So those hints you talk about do exist.

About the change in turns remaining depending on player actions I believe is also there although cant really confirm. But dont see it so hard to implement in any case.
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Good to know it's a little deeper than I gave them credit for
 
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soak man
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I do see it as an advantage (way less fiddly for the players), and I'm not necessarily asking for specifics, but sometimes I want to game the game in a way that makes it more challenging (or less if I'm teaching someone who is not a gamer). Don't get me wrong, I love surprises, and I'm glad to hear that it scales, but in both AH and EH, we often control multiple investigators just to get the pacing and game balance to be where we like it in my playgroup.

I like the idea of the app being able to scale in more intricate ways as well, but I still think I would like to know beforehand. Especially since insanity mechanics seem to prohibit (or at least strongly dissuade) playing more than one investigator per player. Game sessions are a time investment, and if I'm about to set down to a game that is 3-4 hours long, I'd like to know if it's going to be 'extra difficult' because of the investigators we have chosen (or the number playing). This information will probably be speculated about after people have played enough games with varying numbers of players, but usually there is some nod to how the game scales in the manual or reference book as the players usually need to manipulate parts of the game themselves.
 
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Yeah, good points. I see no reason why they couldn't add an overall difficulty modifier on top of whatever variations they've already got in place. That would extend the life of the game, surely.

Perhaps suggest it to them, if there is no such thing in the app already? (I'm avoiding the app till we have the box!!!)
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Pudsy wrote:
(I'm avoiding the app till we have the box!!!)


Good boy. I succumbed to temptation, I admit it. Too strong.

Pudsy wrote:
(Perhaps suggest it to them, if there is no such thing in the app already?


There is no such thing besides that each scenario has a difficulty rating.

I don´t think this game would be more fun if you had more or less turns or more or less monsters to fight. Its not a dungeon crawler. The tactical part is too simple compared to other games out there much more oriented to tactics. Everything boils down to narrative and storytelling, beginning with combat.
 
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Michael Logan
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Acererak wrote:
soakman wrote:
That's the only downside to the app so far for me: the inability to know just how it calculates and adjusts events and the construction of the pool that the cards are drawn from. Even how starting items are determined and from what pool if they are randomized (other than Kate and Ashcan Pete).


Funny. That is precisely one of the great advantages of the app for me. No player knows exactly how this is calculated so you really dont know what is coming to you. Builds up on the mystery part.


I know one of the reasons I choose board games over video games is because I can make truly informed decisions.
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Acererak wrote:
Pudsy wrote:
(I'm avoiding the app till we have the box!!!)


Good boy. I succumbed to temptation, I admit it. Too strong.

Ha! Notice I didn't say I "had" avoided the app
I did of course download it, so I've got it ready for our first game.

And of course I had to... "make sure it runs ok" (ie. blindly start a game & randomly click some stuff in the first room without reading any of the text, just to see generally what was involved in operating it, so I can know what to expect at the table)

But yeah, I shut it down immediately after that & am now "avoiding the app till we have the box".
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soak man
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Acererak wrote:
Pudsy wrote:
(I'm avoiding the app till we have the box!!!)


Good boy. I succumbed to temptation, I admit it. Too strong.

Pudsy wrote:
(Perhaps suggest it to them, if there is no such thing in the app already?


There is no such thing besides that each scenario has a difficulty rating.

I don´t think this game would be more fun if you had more or less turns or more or less monsters to fight. Its not a dungeon crawler. The tactical part is too simple compared to other games out there much more oriented to tactics. Everything boils down to narrative and storytelling, beginning with combat.


I think there is an element of tension involved when it comes to the amount of monsters, difficulty of mythos, and (potentially) the length of remaining time until you are simply too late to interrupt the horrible ritual that summons (insert GOO here). I'd like those things to scale so that when I have four people playing, it doesn't feel like the monster dies immediately because all 4 of us get to bludgeon it to death before it gets to terrorize us, etc. Now, I realize that the app DOES scale, but I'd just like to know how.

Can I expect MORE monsters? Or just harder ones? Do the puzzles require more moves? Are the cumulative checks on some investigation actions increased? Will the monsters have more of a tendency to attack the SAME investigator, therefore increasing the chance of someone being eliminated?

I would love to ask FFG these questions, but do you know if there is an appropriate channel? Should I just send it the same way you would ask a "rules" question via their site?
 
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