$18.00
GeekGold Bonus for All Supporters: 76.54

5,197 Supporters

$15 min for supporter badge & GeekGold bonus
32.7% of Goal | 28 Days Left

Support:

Recommend
 
 Thumb up
 Hide
28 Posts
1 , 2  Next »   | 

Shadows of Brimstone: Swamps of Death» Forums » General

Subject: Worth getting without expansions? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
John Prewitt
United States
Granada Hills
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
I've heard there's not a lot of replay value in the core box and you need to get expansions? Is this true? I already own Kingdom Death and don't need another money sink type of game. Is the base game worth getting alone?
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Roop
United States
Three Rivers
Michigan
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
I could imagine just having the base game would be fine, IF you (and your group) are the types to create your own material for it. It's really not that hard to create monsters for the game, and encounters to run into, and the missions are pretty basic so I'm sure you could whip up another 20 on your own.

However, if you (and your group) has no inkling for this, I would stay away.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jonah Rees
Wales
Cardiff
South Wales
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
The base game will keep you going for a while but probably not long. Unfortunately this game is a money sink no two ways about it!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andreas Lieberoth Wadum
Denmark
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
Totally worth getting.

The main reason everyone goes bananas for expansions is that it's a good game, and you end up wanting more.

Lots of hours of gameplay in each basic box
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Prewitt
United States
Granada Hills
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
How many hours/play in base box if anyone could guesstimate?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian C
United States
Lansing
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
There's no other dungeon crawl like it -- but I would have saved my money if I knew exactly what to expect. It is a huge money pit, but in my opinion that's not inherently a bad thing. I'm sure we both agree that KD:M's also a huge money pit. The main difference is that KD:M delivers a finished-product type of experience, where SoB feels more like an alpha or beta.

If they continue to improve on the franchise, in about 10 years SoB 3.0 should be out of this world. Personally, I wish I would have waited until then.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Prewitt
United States
Granada Hills
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
10 years for it to be a finished product in your eyes? Wow.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian C
United States
Lansing
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
79strat wrote:
10 years for it to be a finished product in your eyes? Wow.

Maybe that was a bit dramatic. But I wish I had waited for the next edition. That one is on pace to redefine the genre. But it feels like for the moment, we paid a lot of money to playtest this version.

That said, there are a lot of people that would disagree with me, and really love this game. Since the game is so expensive (~$80x2), I would do some hard research first, to find out on which side of things you would end up.

It's been a costly mistake so far for me.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jee Fu
United States
Maryland
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
79strat wrote:
10 years for it to be a finished product in your eyes? Wow.

Eh, don't let that Doomsayer scare ya

If you're looking for a Dungeon Crawl experience that offers a dependably homogeneous experience across replays, razor-tight balance, and a relatively low-weight then Shadows of Brimstone is definitely not it. I recommend Descent for those requirements.

However, if you want to invest in a game that - to put it in math terms - as the amount of time, energy, and money you spend on it approaches infinity, the experience you get from it approaches "The Best Goddamned Game Ever" then Shadows of Brimstone is the one you want.

You have KD:M already, so you already know what it's like to keep your Financial Soul in a box. If you're not willing to spend the money to unlock SoB's True Potential, I recommend getting A Touch of Evil (another of FFP's games) instead. It uses similar mechanics and offers the same level of "wow, this randomly generated series of events produced a surprisingly cohesive narrative" that all Flying Frog games do. It is very affordable, positively drips with theme and does 1-Shot Co-Op adventures that can be played in a single evening better than Brimstone does.

That being said, a single Core Set of SoB will probably give you a solid 20-30 hours of game-play each before it starts to get a little stale. You can stretch the replayability of the Swamps Core Set a little further, because it comes with the Preacher class which is markedly different from all the other Core classes mechanically. But be warned: once you get your first taste, it's very hard to stop craving more content. It's like the Board Game version of Diablo. I Kickstarted every damn thing about it, and not a day goes by that I don't wish I had bought an extra copy of every monster pack. I got a list of friends 15 people deep lining-up to play. When you have more content that you can possibly see in 100+ sessions, Shadows of Brimstone becomes the closest thing to a straight-up Tabletop RPG that you can achieve without having an actual Game Master.

- Jee
11 
 Thumb up
0.02
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Blasco

Brier
Washington
msg tools
mbmb
If you have a group that likes role playing, this is a fantastic system for that. You don't need a dungeon master, but you could very well use this system and have a DM put together scenarios, and it would be fantastic.

On it's own, one core box will be a lot of fun. It's a heavy game, so it takes a while to really get the feel for it. I would imagine you'd get just as many hours of fun out of this as you'd get out of most other board games, unless your group is the type to play the same game every week for a year.

I feel like a lot of co-op games can lose something after a short while, since the challenge doesn't change. When playing against other people, strategies can change to counter other players, and you have a very dynamic game. With co-ops, once you've figured out the system, things don't change that much.

The nice thing about this game is that there are so many different expansions, if you love the game, you can add in tons of stuff to change up how the game plays. Adding in different monsters, different locations, etc., gives you that variation that you will be missing with just one core box. Luckily, this is something you can figure out with just one box.

Shadows of Brimstone, to me, feels like a role playing game without the role playing part. I don't have to talk like a preacher, but I'll be rolling skill checks, healing mutations at the town, avoiding being shot in a camp ground robbery, figuring out which horse I want to ride... and this is the in-between part of the game, separate from the actual exploring and fighting.

It's a lot of fun, but it's heavy and demands a bit of commitment. If that sounds like a good time to you than I think you'll like this game.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jan Meyberg
Germany
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I'd like to second this opinion:
SoB is definitely a RPG without DM and without (too much, that is) roleplaying.

I indeed tried SoB with my RPG group last week which was - remarkably thing - a minor desaster, as two of them stated "If we're doing something like this, we'd rather play an actual RPG campaign...". This is absolutely NOT TRUE for me:
I love the cooperative aspect, the moddability of this gaming system (in fact that's what you get buying SoD or CotA!) and the fact that, no matter how strange a series of random events turns out to be, you'll have to make up your own story around these!

I started out with CotA, got tons of (free!) additional custom content from BGG (check out the Huckster and Hexcrawl!) and was happy for around a year of casual gaming. Then I got Caverns of Cynder (minor addition, but a cheap shot at ebay) and Frontier town expansions. Currently I feel absolutely overwhelmed by all the stuff I could do if I had the time to play more SoB. (Still I'm planning to get SoD, but that's another pair of shoes)

Conclusion:
If you'd like to spend a limited budget on a RPG-lite with this great Old-West-Cthulhu-Theme, I'd recommend you to spend around $150 for Swamps of Death (or CotA, as I did) and the Frontier Town expansion, which is absolutely worth it's money.
Visit BGG (you should usually do so...) and get Hexcrawl, the Huckster and probably a few custom monsters - you'll be all set and done!

Best regards and happy gaming, Jan
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian C
United States
Lansing
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I agree with everything these guys just said. But now compile those aspects of the game alongside its alpha/beta state, and you have SoB.

I would add a final thought: there's a special type of gamer that this game really was made for. The at-home designer, the gamer who's head is bursting with ideas to make his/her games better.

For that special person, this must be the perfect storm of dungeon crawls, where it provides just enough direction to get you started, but then leaves the rest up to you. If you're that type of gamer, this is the dungeon crawl for you.

But if you intend on spending a thousand bucks on a finished product that you can then spend a thousand hours within unchecked (ala KD:M) -- I say again, do some hard research first!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Prewitt
United States
Granada Hills
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
Now I'm curious because you're the first person I've seen mention it as being in an alpha/beta state. Why do you feel that way? I was under the assumption it "is" a finished product. Are there plans for different versions down the road that are more "finished" that you know of?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Harman
United States
Ontario
CA
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
Role playing is what you make of it. I've played dnd games that have almost no role play.

There is absolutely room to role play in sob, and if you enjoy role playing, I absolutely suggest doing so in sob.

I'm also curious about the argument that it's an "alpha" product. Suffice to say, I don't agree with that idea.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Brian C
United States
Lansing
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I just consider it an alpha/beta ruleset because:

i) Enemies in the base games are pretty much one-dimensional, and the game rewards using the same tactic (bottleneck the entrance of a room) religiously in order to steamroll them. Rigorous playtesting should have raised all kinds of red flags here, especially in a game where there's so much emphasis on character progression (give us ways to invest into these types of overpowered strategies; and then give the game ways to occasionally trump those).

ii) Kind of along the same vein, spatial elements in this game are tantamount to meaningless. The game could very nearly be played without using its awesome-looking map tiles at all. The heroes and enemies don't have Facing; there are very few hero or enemy Abilities that make use of movement. The only aspects of the game that are affected by moving along the map tiles are: how fast you can complete the mission (could have used another timing mechanism instead), how often you can Scavenge (same thing here), and the range at which enemies are from your hero in terms of: can they attack you, and can you attack them (could have used a card flipping mechanism instead, and just have completely did without the map tiles altogether). Would have loved to have seen these beautiful map tiles seeded with all kinds of rules mechanics, ala the new Cynder tiles -- but instead they are mostly just table-space-consumers that don't bring anything meaningful to the game besides their aesthetic value.

If they had used Facing for the heroes and enemies, and focused their hero/enemy abilities on utilizing Facing in order to gain the upper hand: it would have taken a lot longer to build the game, but man.. it would have been infinitely more interesting IMO.

iii) There are many cases where the different layers of rules just don't mesh well together. Heroes are given stats (Strength, Agility, etc), but those stats don't inherently do anything of themselves, besides the notable exception: a higher Strength score allows the hero to carry more weight in loot. I would have loved to have seen that concept throughout the Attribute scores. But a higher Agility doesn't allow you to dodge incoming attacks easier -- there's a Defense stat for that instead. In fact a higher Agility does very little for your character unless the odd Encounter (a card you flip when entering a room tile for the first time -- maybe it will ask someone at random to make an attribute test, or maybe you get to pick who can test the particular attribute).

All in all, I think it was a noble effort by the Hill brothers to try and fit into a box what, up until now, hasn't ever fit into a box -- the table top RPG experience.

But for the gamer wanting a complete experience for their money, I just don't know if this game is worth the asking price. There are plenty of other people (see above!) who obviously think it is, though.

Edit: Or let me put it to you in a much simpler way that I think you'll appreciate.

Playing KD:M for the first time, you do a lot of: "Oh wow, that was ruthless, what just happened. I don't know if I agree with this or that design decision." But later you begin to realize it was done for a specific reason, and you grin to yourself, saying: "Ah ok, I see now. Brilliant."

Playing SoB for the first time, you do a lot of: "Holy shit, the way they handle loot in this game is off the hook. And we have skill trees to invest in? And imagine all the random, off the wall stuff that can happen in any given mine. What a dynamic, fun system for a dungeon crawl." But later you start mumbling to yourself: "Ah, they were able to fit all of that in because combat itself is paper thin and just comes down to rolling hordes of d6. But if we're not playing for the combat, yet the entire game revolves around it.. then what are we doing here?"

The answer to that last question may indeed be: to role play. To find some deeper reason within yourself to play the game. But if not for that reason, then you just spent a lot of money on something completely other than you thought you were spending it on. That's the gamer I'm trying to help by these posts (because you won't hear it from anyone else on these boards).
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Josh Murphy
United States
Saint Louis
Missouri
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
A feudal Japan themed core box will be coming out late next year. I'm guessing it will take into account all the lessons learned from this first wave of content and be a more dynamic product. The initial two cores, as has been stated already, are fine but not terribly varied. It takes a few expansions that add enemy ranged and magic attacks before combat begins to feel diverse.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jonah Rees
Wales
Cardiff
South Wales
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
It isn't an alpha game in terms of not being a finished product because it absolutely is finished. However, many of the issues Brian mentions are indeed present but these can be countered by not playing a certain way (i.e. don't just bottle up though I agree that it's still a design fault that should have been recognised) or implementing pretty easy house rules. In this respect it's more of a sandbox game that let's you create additional rules very easily rather than an alpha game that's using players to playtest. It's not without it's problems but it is still a lot of fun (though it is still a money sink so might not be the best for you!).
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Prewitt
United States
Granada Hills
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
jomurph86 wrote:
A feudal Japan themed core box will be coming out late next year. I'm guessing it will take into account all the lessons learned from this first wave of content and be a more dynamic product. The initial two cores, as has been stated already, are fine but not terribly varied. It takes a few expansions that add enemy ranged and magic attacks before combat begins to feel diverse.


Will that be Kickstarter or retail release (or both?). My wife would be all over the theme.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Harman
United States
Ontario
CA
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
79strat wrote:
jomurph86 wrote:
A feudal Japan themed core box will be coming out late next year. I'm guessing it will take into account all the lessons learned from this first wave of content and be a more dynamic product. The initial two cores, as has been stated already, are fine but not terribly varied. It takes a few expansions that add enemy ranged and magic attacks before combat begins to feel diverse.


Will that be Kickstarter or retail release (or both?). My wife would be all over the theme.


Both. Ks likely next year. And retail after that.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Eric Harman
United States
Ontario
CA
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
jonahmaul wrote:
It isn't an alpha game in terms of not being a finished product because it absolutely is finished. However, many of the issues Brian mentions are indeed present but these can be countered by not playing a certain way (i.e. don't just bottle up though I agree that it's still a design fault that should have been recognised) or implementing pretty easy house rules. In this respect it's more of a sandbox game that let's you create additional rules very easily rather than an alpha game that's using players to playtest. It's not without it's problems but it is still a lot of fun (though it is still a money sink so might not be the best for you!).


Agreed. Brian does bring up some good points. But I also dont think they indicate an *alpha* release. To call a game an alpha is a very strong criticism.

And much of the bottle necking problem is resolved with expansion monsters.

So, an alpha? No way.
In some ways slightly unpolished? Sure.
But it's loads of fun. So shrug.

I've never met an rpg (except dread) that didn't eventually come down to rolling a bunch of dice
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Craig Bocketti
United States
Clifton Park
New York
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
All the criticism are fair.

But I don't know, I own both base sets that I paid about 200 bucks for. I don't care about minis and you will have to glue them together so that you will either love or hate that aspect.

It is a dice chucking fest. And there are ridiculous piles of cards to manage that cries for an app to manage.

But so far I have had about 10 good sessions, and I have been lucky to have time and two good friends and these sessions last no less than 8-12 hours, yup hours. It's insane how the game draws you in, even though the monsters are the same, it's just always fun drawing the loot and gear cards.

I picked up 4 more heroes at GenCon and they are all very cool, I wanted to buy more expansions but the game is just too much.

That's my biggest complaint, the game is too big.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jonah Rees
Wales
Cardiff
South Wales
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
mustardayonnaiz wrote:
That's my biggest complaint, the game is too big.


Likewise. I've made an insert for one box too group the monsters making them easier to pick up and made a card holder which I've printed off Klutz's Card Dividers for to make that bit easier too. But it is absolutely an investment of time which means it doesn't hit the table as often as I'd like.

Going away this weekend with a load of friends for our annual geekfest and we have plans to play SoB a lot as we can get it all out and leave it set up for the weekend.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Craig Bocketti
United States
Clifton Park
New York
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
jonahmaul wrote:
mustardayonnaiz wrote:
That's my biggest complaint, the game is too big.


Likewise. I've made an insert for one box too group the monsters making them easier to pick up and made a card holder which I've printed off Klutz's Card Dividers for to make that bit easier too. But it is absolutely an investment of time which means it doesn't hit the table as often as I'd like.

Going away this weekend with a load of friends for our annual geekfest and we have plans to play SoB a lot as we can get it all out and leave it set up for the weekend.


Yea luckily I have a downstairs gameroom area which I tend to leave it set up between plays. I have a pretty large table but still have never played the fixed map missions because no available table space.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Freelance Police
United States
Palo Alto
California
flag msg tools
designer
mbmbmbmbmb
Have you looked at all the fan content yet? Looks like there's a fair amount, including a hexcrawl campaign version, which looks professionally made. Main criticism I've heard about the game is that all the monsters just attack you. Miniatures are from harder plastic but about as plain as other boardgame miniatures; definitely not CMON levels of details. I just got the game through trade yesterday, so haven't digested the rules yet. If you can wait and like Japanese themes, the next SoB KS, called Forbidden Fortress, will start in October.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
nick b
Canada
vancouver
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I absolutely love this game and it is best described as an RPG-lite, as others have said.
A single base game is a little thin, in my opinion. You'll have fun but it will get tired pretty quick. Adding a few of the monster packs, however, will liven up the encounters significantly. The expansion monsters have much more interesting rules.
I've now bought a ton of stuff for this game, mostly off of ebay as I didn't back the kickstarter. I've spent a fair chunk of change but it feels very, very complete. I'm actually not sure how much more stuff I will get for it as I'm pretty happy with the state of my game.

If you're really interested, I say go for SOD but I do think you need to add more content to get the full experience. If you're willing to invest, it is a fantastic game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
1 , 2  Next »   | 
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.