$18.00
GeekGold Bonus for All Supporters: 115.72

7,050 Supporters

$15 min for supporter badge & GeekGold bonus
44.4% of Goal | left

Support:

Recommend
3 
 Thumb up
 Hide
5 Posts

Mansions of Madness: Second Edition» Forums » General

Subject: Cult of Sentinel Hill (Scenario Review) rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Milan Verveer
msg tools
Hey all,

This is my first post on boardgamegeek ever.
Yesterday night I played one of the two newer scenarios, which released with the two new expansions, "The Cult of Sentinel Hill".

And I'm actually really sad to say, I actually kinda disliked this scenario.
Now, for the record, we played with a full group (so 5 players total) and we lost in the end.
The fact that we lost has nothing to do with my personal (and the other persons in the group as well) dislike of this scenario.

So far, since the release of MoM: the 2nd edition, I've played The Cycle of Eternity, Escape from Innsmouth and The Cult of Sentinel Hill.

The first two I enjoyed tremendously!
Lot's of fun choices to make and amusing encounters.
The stories made sense to all players and had enjoyable plot twists.

Now, in my humble opinion, The Cult of Sentinel Hill had none of these things.

From here on, I'll activate the spoiler thingy, for people who still want to experience the scenario for themselves.

Spoiler (click to reveal)
Just throwing it out there, I LOVED the beginning of the scenario. Immediately getting kidnapped by the Culprit(s) and waking up in some kind of weird test lab is in my opinion a great way to start a story and to get the players intrigued.
We met an old man, in the same cell as us, called Zebulon. He moved around throughout the scenario and offered new dialogue and clues whenever someone spoke with him.
Everybody liked this as well, because it added another bit of mystery!
Was this man maybe lying? Could he be the culprit?
All kinds of theories popped up at the table!
Sadly, as soon as we left the small lab enclosure, which was about 4 spaces big, we entered the woods and here players started to lose interest.
From this point on, the entire scenario revealed itself (in a very non-subtle way) to be a race to the top of Sentinel Hill and stop some old guy from summoning the Dunwich Horror.
No matter what you do, the creature will spawn and you'll need to kill it in order to win.
And it's not like he'll go down easily, because the thing has 48 hit points!!
And with the limited variation in weapons the scenario offers, you'll definitely need a few rounds to get it down.
So yeah... as soon as the battle starts, the entire scenario basically melts down to fighting a raid boss in world of warcraft.
No mystery anymore, no intrigue, no subtlety, just run around for a few rounds and enjoy killing it very slowly.
Oh and you better make damn well sure you're in sprint mode, because if you don't kill it within a certain amount of turns, the game just ends and you lost without warning.
To be fair, our group did try to think outside the box and find another way to kill the Dunwich Horror, because it seemed nigh on impossible to kill a creature with 48 hit points, so we figured, there must be some way to reverse the ritual which it summoned.
But nope, you just need to go full call of duty on it's butt for quite a while.
Now, if you mostly enjoy the combat system about this game and you love fighting monsters and rolling dice, then you could probably like this scenario.
I, however, enjoy the story aspect of MoM the most, slowly revealing clue after clue and then suddenly hitting you with a plot twist.
Sadly, in my opinion, this scenario did not deliver on that aspect.

Please do let me know if you know we did something wrong or if we missed some key story info!
I love Mansions of Madness Second edition and I think the app is a great addition, because The Cult of Sentinel Hill just felt to me like lots of combat and lazy writing. snore
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
soak man
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Spoiler (click to reveal)
There were bits of this that I didn't care for either, but to be honest our playthrough was fantastic.

Having actually read The Dunwich Horror, there are problems story-wise with how the DH is summoned for one (imo, if you're going to borrow from source material, you should at least pick-up where it left things)

This being said, we had Rita, Sister Mary, and Darrel. The fact that Darrel's story is all about trying to capture evidence and the DH is notoriously invisible added a bit of depth for me. Additionally, Sister Mary saved Rita from a lightning strike that created fire (that actually finished off the DH).

One thing you definitely sound like you missed was the Dynamite. It is a findable item that will essentially do 10 damage by itself for the cost of one action (just don't throw it near your other players). This helps tremendously in the fight.

I got the feeling that there were a couple ways this scenario could have ended but I'm not sure. Are you sure no matter what the same end-game occurs? What if Whatley completes the ritual?

Also, the health scales with player number, but 48 isn't unreasonable with 5 players. That is essentially in the best case 10 attacks per turn, meaning you would have to do 5 damage per attack on average to take it out in a single turn.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Milan Verveer
msg tools
Spoiler (click to reveal)
We actually searched every search token there was and collected every item on the board. The 3 most dangerous items we had, were the dynamite, the shotgun and the revolver.
Now the dynamite is indeed powerful, but also almost impossible to not to hit teammates with.
It deals 8 damage to all investigators in the space of the thrown dynamite and every adjacent space to that space.
Now, I am aware we could've cheated a bit and read the back of the dynamite card in advance though it mentions you're only allowed to do this once used, but yeah, it is very hard to use the dynamite without having innocent casualties.

As for the rest, the shotgun has a base damage of 6 and the revolver 3.
So, assuming you took your time, exploring everything, talking to zebulon, etc., you would need 1 turn to inflict 18 damage (again, assuming all the weapons hit) in 1 turn. Now the Dunwich horror is at 30 hit points. Assuming you would hit every single shot with the revolver and shotgun, you would need at least 4 more rounds to kill the dunwich horror alone.
My problem lies mostly with the fact that the game can and will suddenly end if you take too long killing the dunwich horror.

Apart from The Dunwich Horror being a giant wall of meat to beat, I just simply did not like the simplicity behind the story.
Zebulon had some generic quotes when you talked to him.
The story was basically just "You need to stop this wizard guy from finishing his experiment." to which I thought "Gosh! An experiment which would most likely be the summoning of a monster. In Dunwich? I wooooonder who that could beeee? *glares at Dunwich Horror figurine on the table.*".

There were barely any fun choices you could make.
So yeah, I guess I didn't like this campaign because it felt to me like a Mario level.
Run for the end within the time limit, kill the Goombas-, I mean Crawling Ones and defeat Bowse-, I mean the Dunwich Horror.
Just going through the motions until you reach the end and then hope you have enough turns left (after ALSO finding the dynamite, revolver and shotgun, because otherwise you lack serious damage) to make some bad combat rolls vs the Dunwich Horror and still be able to kill it within the time limit.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
soak man
msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Spoiler (click to reveal)
Fair enough.

As for the dynamite though (and I see your point about casualties), it doesn't trigger the damage until the end of the investigator phase. As long as you don't throw it as one of your very last investigator's actions, you have a few actions to get casualties out of the way. This is where overlooked actions like the "push" action can come in handy. Or even a last minute use of Carson (the butler's ability).

In our particular case, Sister Mary cast shriveling twice (doing 9+damage alone), then Darrel threw the dynamite. We read the back and Rita used her actions to move to Sister Mary, and then Push her to safety out of range of the dynamite.

We only had 3 players netted us (I think) at least half of the thing's health.

And not to sound critical, but I think that it's not terribly unexpected that a large bundle of dynamite might explode nearby people/monsters/etc.

There aren't a LOT of strong weapons in the game, but using both of your actions to attack (even if you think you won't succeed) is almost always worth it when struggling against a large foe. Sometimes the test allows you to do weapon damage + successes which means many times you actually do more damage than you might expect to. And the faster you kill the monster, obviously, the less danger it will be as it will get fewer attacks and horror checks. I am of the impression that a great offense is the best defense against a single enemy whereas a swift defense is most useful against hordes of little creeping monsters. With 5 players, all focusing on the monster, (even if you had to punch it, haha) I wouldn't think it impossible.

I don't think anyone could ever be surprised at how a scenario in Dunwich meant to coincide with the re-release of the DH figure would end. Looking for surprises in this particular case seems perhaps a bit over optimistic.

I do understand your dislike of the more straight-forward non-mystery scenarios, as I much prefer a long investigation a la the base scenario with the multiple suspects.

I don't think it's a poor scenario really, I just think it is rather transparent.

I would expect each scenario has a hard-capped game timer as well. So far, I believe that is true. If you searched EVERY searchable token, I'm not surprised if you lost due to the internal timer. It's unfortunate, but the timer is there because in a coop game, you can't always prevent "power creep" in a scenario that drags on too long. Depending on your items and abilities, it could be possible to just heal your way to victory. Without a timer, I feel like the psychologist and the doctor would almost become must-have picks.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Greg Filpus
United States
Bellevue
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Zaurask wrote:
Spoiler (click to reveal)
We actually searched every search token there was and collected every item on the board. The 3 most dangerous items we had, were the dynamite, the shotgun and the revolver.
Now the dynamite is indeed powerful, but also almost impossible to not to hit teammates with.
It deals 8 damage to all investigators in the space of the thrown dynamite and every adjacent space to that space.
Now, I am aware we could've cheated a bit and read the back of the dynamite card in advance though it mentions you're only allowed to do this once used, but yeah, it is very hard to use the dynamite without having innocent casualties.


Small rules correction:

Spoiler (click to reveal)
You are explicitly allowed to look at the back of Item cards in your possession.


As far as the scenario goes,

Spoiler (click to reveal)
I kind of agree. I played with 2 investigators, so the Horror only had 15 HP. (We never found the Dynamite) It wasn't a bag of hit points as much as it was a race to kill it before it could finish us off.

What disappointed me more was that the scenario before we got to the boss didn't have a mechanical "hook" like Escape from Innsmouth, Shattered Bonds, or Dearly Departed. The closest it had to anything tactically distinctive was when it was spawning ranged or flying monsters on the other side of the river. We had to use ranged attacks, but both characters started with a ranged attack so it wasn't a huge limitation.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
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.