$10.00
Recommend
35 
 Thumb up
 Hide
44 Posts
1 , 2  Next »   | 

Descent: Journeys in the Dark» Forums » Variants

Subject: Descent Solo Rules Variant rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: WoD [+] variant [+] solitaire [+] solo [+] descent [+] AoD [+] [View All]
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Decent Solo Rules 3.0 PDF found HERE

Enjoy =)

This will now be the main discussion thread since I'll be handling updates via the PDF now. Much easier to manage.
18 
 Thumb up
4.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Changes:
v3.0 (22 Jun 2011)
• v3.0 Rules PDF posted

v2.2.1 Hotfix (28 Mar 2011)
• Made rule 3.d a little more understandable. Also added the rule for if there are no chests on the board and the chest trap card is drawn.
• Made rule 3.e a little more understandable. Also added the rule for if there are no doors on the board to undiscovered areas and the door trap card is drawn.

v2.2 (27 Mar 2011)
• Added rules for Dark Glyphs (see c3)
• Added rules for Dark Relics (see 3.b)

v 2.1 (19 Feb 2011)
• Added in rules for WoD and AoD expansions
• Setup Rule C was divided into 6 parts to reflect WoD and AoD treachery rules. I tried to keep this as simple as possible but still give a challenge.
• Added rules 1.f and 3.a. They are Gold Difficulty rules that give monsters that have not counterattacked a chance to attack to simulate closer to the core game rules.

v 2.0.2 (11 Feb 2011)
• Added a last chest roll result to 3.d
• Added condition to 3.d for leftover trap (chest) cards.
• Added a Gold Difficulty to 3.d
• Added a last door roll result to 3.3
• Added condition to 3.3 for leftover trap (door) cards.
• Added a Gold Difficulty to 3.3

v 2.0.1 (9 Feb 2011):
• Added Level 2 and Level 3 Difficulties within the rules to make it easier. (they were at the end and you had to flip back and forth)
• Changed "Level 2" to "Silver" and "Level 3" to "Gold" to better follow the theme of Descent.
• Added "Silver Difficulty" to rule 2.a.1
• Fixed a few minor grammar problems.


v 2.0 (6 Feb 2011):
• Added thoughts and ideas from comments from original rule set by willdesigns.
• Added a few ideas of my own from first few plays of original rule set by willdesigns
• Changed the way experience points are spent.
• Added keys to Master Monsters.
• Added Difficulty Levels

Future Workings:
Random Dungeon Generator - Progression: 10% - I have willdesigns notes from the one he was working on so may use those as a base.

Second Variant - I have ideas for another variant that doesn't involve an Overlord at all. This will be in the works after the Random Dungeon Generator is complete since it will also use that. Inspiration came from Dungeons & Dragons: Castle Ravenloft Board Game

Road to Legend solo campaign rules? I have my doubts about this, though if people really want RtL solo rules, I'll do my best. I'll post a poll for them after I polish the above rules and future workings. - I'm currently running my first advanced campaign with this expansion to learn how it works.

I do not own Descent: The Tomb of Ice or Descent: The Sea of Blood so I will not be adding any additional rules for them as I cannot playtest them.

Please post your comments, concerns, verifications, suggestions, etc. if you would like. (Praises are welcome too if deserved laugh)
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Updates Posted
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Updates added. See change log for details. Finally got some Well of Darkness and Alter of Despair rules going. Please give feedback and playtests and any concerns, comments, and/or questions you have.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jon Kolman
United States
Sacramento
California
flag msg tools
Great job, Christopher!

I just bought Altar of Despair (as well as Road to Legend) yesterday, and am dying to get a solo game going but unfortunately, I have been busy with work. When I get a chance, Ill play-through the updated rules and let you know if anything sticks out.

Thanks again for doing this!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
John Middleton
United States
Laramie
Wyoming
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Thank you for these rules, nice work.

Have you considered playing this game solo as the Overlord, with the goal being to kill off automated heroes. Possibly with the Well expansion for additional variety.

Seems that it would be very easy to automate the heroes.


1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Nick H
Canada
Alberta
flag msg tools
tried playing this last night. Had a few questions.

Monsters only attack after being attacked? So on the overlord's turn monster's dont move?

Would it be to challenging for the heroes if monster had a turn?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Killboyy777 wrote:
tried playing this last night. Had a few questions.

Monsters only attack after being attacked? So on the overlord's turn monster's dont move?

Would it be to challenging for the heroes if monster had a turn?


Have a look at the Gold Difficulty Rules for 1.f and 3.a.

I did feel that all monsters should still get to activate, but wanted to keep the theme of the counter attacks. I made it for the harder difficulty instead.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Update 2.2 is up.

I think this variant is as good as it could be. I will continue to make tweaks as needed, but I don't want to make it anymore complex than it already is. Once I get some time, I'm going to try to rework the flow of this variant to make it easier to read and to make it into a PDF as well. (much easier to update too).

I've also decided to put on hold my ideas for the random dungeon maker and the variant that puts you against the game, completely eliminating an overlord. I'm not abandoning it though, I'm just currently being distracted by two board games I recently bought, Merchants & Marauders and Pandemic. And yea, I'm currently play-testing 2 solo variants I'm making for Merchants & Marauders.

4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jon Kolman
United States
Sacramento
California
flag msg tools
Thanks for all of your hard work on this variant. Being that I am primarily a solo gamer, and Descent is such a fun game, I am anxious to try out these updated rules.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
You are most welcome. I still have yet to figure out how to do RtL though. Of course, the dungeon parts can easily use this variant... which, I actually was already planning. The Silver and Gold difficulties actually come into play for RTL. When the campaign becomes a silver Campaign, you use the Silver Difficulties. The same goes for Gold. The only thing I haven't worked out completely is the Overworld stuff.

One idea I had was with each Avatar to make a priority list that follows a certain path. However I felt that would streamline it too much and make it too predictable and could even possibly be manipulated. I'm just kinda stuck on that part but I'm sure I'll figure out something eventually, cause I myself want to play a solo campaign. lol.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jan Meyberg
Germany
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
shacky22 wrote:
And yea, I'm currently play-testing 2 solo variants I'm making for Merchants & Marauders.




Whoa ... would you so kind to post them once playtested?? (Or ... probably ... in beta-status?)

Thank you so far for these great solo-rules! (I'm recently switching back from M&M to Descent solo, but, as the case might be, I might switch back with your rules ;-) )
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Funny you ask. Last night I decided to post the beta versions. I'm doing everything PDF now since it's easier to update. Unfortunately that means the file needs approving first. But they are on the way. I'll send you a geekmail when they are up.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Yost
United States
Bothell
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I'm trying to understand the flow for chest/door traps once all chest/doors are gone. I think the 3.d rules are saying that any outstanding chest traps next to the board get cashed out for danger threat once the last chest is gone. What happens to new chest traps from the deck? do they get paid for and then cashed out? or just cashed out right from the deck? and a d12 roll still happens?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Nice catch, I didn't see that. I'll add in there what happens with chest/door cards when there are none left on the board. Oh, and the roll area that says "last trap"... should say "last chest". I wanted an even greater chance for the last chest to have a trap, but still have the possibility that it doesn't.

With this I was trying to simulate you not knowing if the Overlord has a chest trap or not, and if he does, if he'll have enough threat to pay for it, cause who knows, he could be saving threat for something else and when the last chest is opened, doesn't want to spend the threat for it, or doesn't even have it. I'll think this over as I'm doing a graveyard shift tonight and will have plenty of time on my hands. Expect this fix sometime in the night. =)

(I'd get to it now but I just can't at the moment)

Done
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jan Meyberg
Germany
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Great! Thank you very much in advance!
I tinkered around a little bit with M&M solo myself, but didn't really get an idea other than "try to get 10 glory in below 15 (12, 10, ...) turns...

A VERY confuse idea of mine might employ wizkids Pirates of the Spanish main fantastic constructible ships (and krakens!) to create a horrific fleet of undead pirates searching for the long-lost maya gold and pillaging several ports... (but this really has to be worked out!)

I'm looking forward to your ideas!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Yost
United States
Bothell
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I got a chance to play through this tonight. Thanks for all the hard work. I understand that you're mainly interested in tweaking rather than adding complexity, so i'm trying to keep the comments in that vein.

I played quest 1 on bronze difficulty. I'm not quite done with it but I'm a few hours in. I have had only one death and the humans are at 15 conquest. I've had pretty awesome treasure draws that match up nicely with the characters. I think I need to play on Silver because although i'm having a lot of fun, I don't feel like I'm in any danger at all.

overall feedback:
This changes the mechanics of the game in some really interesting ways. Good players in Descent will tend to blitz the monsters and minimize the times that they get to attack (since attacks get quite deadly near the end of the game, you typically try to pile damage on the enemies and hope they don't get to hit you back) In this mode, there are a ton of monster attacks since they're always counter attacking. It means that you'll get to slug it out a lot more and it means the big bads will get way more attacks. Very different and very interesting. It makes for some changes for the strategy that I haven't quite finished digesting yet, but I am finding it pretty interesting to work through. For instance, powers that give you multiple attacks are much less valuable, since the enemies get to move every time you attack. I'm finding there to be much less time pressure, since there's only a 33% chance of spawn per turn, and if there's no spawn, the overlord gained no advantage at all. (and the monsters that are out of range can't even move to chase me) So I find myself resting or using town or trading way more often than I would in traditional Descent. Defensive items seem substantially better since you'll usually be tanking hits, and powers like Taunt become really interesting.


specific feedback:
Sorry to ask about traps again - how are the traps handled when multiple traps of a class are put into play? One way to handle it would be that they both come out and are both checked for triggering, but the way I preferred was to cash out the first trap for threat immediately (this represents the overlord holding only one trap of a kind in his hand)

Why rotate the target numbers on chest trap spawns based on the # on the bottom of the trap? I can't tell why it matters - it doesn't seem to add to theme either. I think you could have one chart for trap triggering for every trap since they're the same odds.

It felt weird to have the heroes splitting XP. I'd consider pooling all of the XP since this is a coop mode. It felt weird that nobody could afford to open a door in the first room, although we had about 10 xp between us.

2.b.1) I found this rule a little confusing. The first sentence mentions killing all monster first. Do I have to kill all of the monsters in order to be able to open a door? This led to some weird mechanics about chasing kobolds around the map in order to open the door. It also would seem to conflict with 2.d, since that mentions opening an area while old monsters are still alive.

Overlord phase - I think the intent of the rules is that the entire overlord turn is replaced by the rules in section 3. Is that accurate? it would mean that the overlord does not get free threat. Since the game always talks about "danger threat" I'm assuming the normal threat concept doesn't exist and he doesn't 1 threat per player on his turn. (and draws no cards except for 3.b) But otherwise, all times we refer to threat we're referring to the danger threat pool. For example, curses from chests pay straight into the danger threat pool.

3.b.1) there was really no chance at all of the deck running out since you only draw 1 card every 3 turns in bronze. Compare to the burn rate of typical descent (2+ cards per turn) and it really changes the time pressure. I imagine part of this is just that I need to bump it up to Silver.

Rules for monsters - you make it clear that monsters should try to do the most damage possible. I think I'd expand that guidance and say that the overlord should try and make the best move possible. For instance, if a monster is killed, I may get to choose between a skeleton or a beastman counterattack. The beastman is more damage, so I choose it. He has to move into position, so I move him into the best position I can come up with.

Rules were unclear about how to spawn as well. I am imagining that you want me to make good overlord choices when spawning and try to spawn as close as possible following LOS rules. For kobolds, I sometimes like to put the master kobolds way off on the other side of the map so it felt wrong to put them as close as possible. Whatever the rule is, I suggest you put some sort of guideline in the spawn section. 3.f also says you can cash in a threat card if there are no legal spawn locations in the discovered area. I'm guess this means "all discovered areas"? It confused me when I first tried to apply it. I ran into a case where the enemies had to be placed several rooms back due to lucky LOS cover and they sort of stayed there forever only penalizing me when it triggered more threat to open doors. I guess that would be slightly different in silver though, since they would start trickling towards the characters.

I had a case where an ogre was blocked from counterattacking a ranged character because a melee character was in the way. Should the ogre attack the melee blocker? I wasn't sure whether you wanted this to be a useful tactic or not.

In Castle Ravenloft, you make tactical choices for the enemies within the rules while trying to make the moves as poor as possible. I think the intent of this mod is that the players should attempt to make optimal moves for the overlord where possible. If you clarify that, it might help fill in the gaps in some rules.

I see that you must spend XP on traits and skills and they can no longer be purchased with money. Does that still have to happen in town?

Skills seem to be weirdly prioritized - I can't spend gold on them, but I can spend XP, which I can't help but get. Additionally, I can draw three/keep 1, which is very powerful for skills and substantially better than a trait dice. I guess on silver/gold the skill cost gets higher, but I imagine I'm still going to try to buy that skill. I think I need to play on silver to see how this flows. It's weird on bronze.

Spiders seem to break the XP model since you get paid per space. A bane spider swarm is worth 14 XP. Compare to a beastman war party that's only worth 4 XP and is possibly more dangerous. I'm always thrilled to see the spiders pop out of the deck.

A couple of skills need tweaked. Wind Pact specifically was difficult to adjudicate. I think I'd either have it burn 4 threat out of the danger pool, or have it exhaust once per area to cancel a spawn/event when it is revealed and force it to be cashed into threat.

general bronze feedback:
overlord deck is so swingy - 2/3 of the overlord turns nothing happens, so you have very little time pressure. I wanted something to still be happening on those turns. Maybe the card is drawn and discarded on the times that the card doesn't activate, so there's still threat pressure on me.

It's weird that I don't actually have to pay the experience for exploring an area - no matter what, the overlord is going to get 10 threat. I lose up to 10 XP, but I can lose less if I have less. It makes more sense in silver where you get penalized for not being able to pay, but I found it pretty confusing until I read the silver upgrade. In bronze, you're actually sort of getting punished for opening the door while you have experience.

I think I just need to play on Silver - it seems like some of the rules move towards a sweeter balance spot at silver.

edit: fix some typos, clarify some feedback. it was late when i was writing this
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Thank you so much for the feedback. I'll look into some of your concerns and suggestions and see what I can do.

As far as the no time pressure, I felt that way too. But what I was really going for originally was that bronze was more of an introduction to the system to get you used to it a bit. The game really gets it's flavor with silver and gold. Perhaps I need to revamp a lot of things since I've added quite a bit, but didn't change others. So that could be where contradictions are happening.

About the multiple traps things... wow, can't believe I didn't think of that. Whenever I was playtesting I don't think I ever had multiple traps on the board so I never thought of it. Consider that noted and will be added.

And about the trap trigger die roll... um. yea. You make a valid point. Would be better to simplify it so that once you play enough, you don't need to reference the rules every time.

Again thanks! I'll get to work on that.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Yost
United States
Bothell
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I reset the game and tried it on Silver. A few new notes:

1a) I'd clarify that in this case the monster gets a full activation, but only can use it to counterattack the player that attacked it. (even if that means disengaging from another player). This covers the case where a ranged attacker fails to kill a melee enemy, since we haven't been told yet by the rules that the monsters get to move in their counterattack. Maybe better off to define counterattack first, and then 1a and 1b can be simpler.

1b) wasn't totally sure how to activate ranged attackers. do they try to move out to maximum range before firing? or do they try to close on their attacker as long as they can get to min range? Or do I get to use overlord's judgement?
3b) silver overlord rules - I think by convention this roll would be triggered on an enhancement rather than on surge or blank.

How does guard work in this variant? I ended up with Leadership in this game and I was placing a lot of guard orders and then using them to interrupt counterattackers and kill them before they could land their strike. You can only trigger guard on an overlord's turn but there sort of is no overlord's turn in this variant, so it seemed to make sense that you can only trigger them during counterattacks. The only thing I don't like about how guard was working was that it turned out Attack+Guard was strictly better than Battle since you can use the 2nd attack from guard to interrupt the first attack of the turn. (and you know you're going to get a chance to interrupt because you can predict the counterattack) I don't have a great idea for fixing this, other than disabling the guard order in the variant.

How does the evil genius power card work? It seemed like it should maybe be simulated by pouring more danger threat per turn into the overlord. (maybe 2? 4 seems too much)

On Silver, I found the primary difference to be a hugely different flow of danger threat into the deck. 4 threat coming a turn (3 human characters) and double cost for opening doors makes a pretty huge difference. I had to open the first door of the game with a character who only had 1 xp, so that's 19 threat towards a power card right there. You definitely start to pile up the power cards, but I'm not sure that I was feeling pressured by the power cards. I guess I would have been threatened by the monster level ramping up to 5 from 4, but trapmaster ended up not doing much since you only draw 1/2 a card from the threat deck every turn on silver, so the chances of me finding a trap were significantly less. Something still doesn't seem quite right about the way the threat deck works - the game is substantially heavier on monsters but somehow it's not quite capturing the effects of the overlord deck. I think I want to see more cards drawn from the overlord deck and some sort of more consistent way that they get triggered. Maybe you always spawn one every turn, and the danger threat just piles up on them, triggering them whenever it can afford to pay them, or something like that. Again, I understand that you're not looking to add new complexity right now.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
While I don't want it to be too complex, I want it to be playable more. Your input that you have given me is exactly what I need to discover any problems that may arise that may not pop up with my playtesting. I haven't been able to playtest for a while, since I'll be moving in a few months so I'm in the process of packing up, therefore having Descent out on the table won't happen for the next few months. Once I move however, I'll be setting it back up on a table off to the side to keep up and keep going with this as much I can.

I'll be printing your responses out so I can highlight various points and go through my rules and make notes for changes. This is a lot easier than scrolling around. lol

I appreciate your responses, very imformative. I have a feeling an update will be happening in the near future, off of your comments and plays.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Now to answer some things.

Yostage wrote:
It felt weird to have the heroes splitting XP. Id' consider pooling all of the XP since this is a coop mode. It felt weird that nobody could afford to open a door in the first room, although we had about 10 xp between us.


The main reason for not pooling xp is for skills and training. Therefore if you want a certain character to get more skills, you'll have to defeat monsters with them.
But I do agree with you about the door thing. Perhaps I could change it where to discover a new area, you can spend xp from multiple characters to do so? What are your thoughts to that? Or should I just have all xp pooled together no matter what like you mentioned? I'm open for discussion on this.

Yostage wrote:
2.b.1) I found this rule a little confusing. The first sentence mentions killing all monster first. Do I have to kill all of the monsters in order to be able to open a door? This led to some weird mechanics about chasing kobolds around the map in order to open the door. It also would seem to conflict with 2.d, since that mentions opening an area while old monsters are still alive.


I think I can word this better, or maybe even give an example. There's a note after 2.b.1 that says that this only happens if you've killed everything in the room and the next card is not a spawn card.

Basically this makes it so you don't get stuck in a room. If you kill everything and don't have enough xp to open the door, your next turn you can open it providing no monsters were spawned. Every door opened must put 10xp into the Danger Threat at least. Since you spend 10xp to get it, this condition was added to overrule the "xp spent goes to danger threat" rule to still get 10 danger threat. However keys do still lower this.

I'll try to reword this as best as possible to make it easier to understand.

-------------------------

When it comes to the monster rules, yes, overlord should try to make the best move possible. For now. I'm toying with the idea of giving a priority list of some sort and/or giving a limit to the amount a monster can counter-attack per turn.

-------------------------

I need to reword 3.f as well. It's basically like the normal rules. If nothing can be spawned in the discovered areas. Since of course, you can't spawn in an undiscovered area.

Yostage wrote:
I had a case where an ogre was blocked from counterattacking a ranged character because a melee character was in the way. Should the ogre attack the melee blocker? I wasn't sure whether you wanted this to be a useful tactic or not.


Yes, he should attack the melee blocker. I will add this to the rules that if the hero that did the attack cannot be reached due to being blocked by either terrain or another hero, then he attacks the nearest hero he can.

Yostage wrote:
I see that you must spend XP on traits and skills and they can no longer be purchased with money. Does that still have to happen in town?


Yes

Yostage wrote:
Skills seem to be weirdly prioritized - I can't spend gold on them, but I can spend XP, which I can't help but get. Additionally, I can draw three/keep 1, which is very powerful for skills and substantially better than a trait dice.


That's an oops on my part and this is a priority fix. I had at one point changed it where you don't start with skills and had the pick 3 option to balance out how you receive your first skills. I had undone some things and I think I went back too far so the 2.b rule didn't get changed. I'll fix this in the next update. Thanks for pointing that out.
I have a new respect for people that write rules for boardgames.laugh

Yostage wrote:
Spiders seem to break the XP model since you get paid per space. A bane spider swarm is worth 14 XP. Compare to a beastman war party that's only worth 4 XP and is possibly more dangerous. I'm always thrilled to see the spiders pop out of the deck.


Yea, I agree. I didn't like how that played out. I'm working on possibly just making a chart of how much each monster is worth in xp instead. I was just trying to find a simple way to do this so as not to have to list every single monster. An idea I had tonight was maybe to base XP off of the main dice (not power dice) that the monster rolls.

Yostage wrote:
It's weird that I don't actually have to pay the experience for exploring an area - no matter what, the overlord is going to get 10 threat.


Keep this in mind. (and perhaps I should add this to the rules)
Opening a door to a new area w/ monsters left - lose 10xp, danger threat +10, +1 per monster left behind
Opening a door to a new area, no monsters left - lose 10xp, Danger Threat +10
Not enough xp to open the door - Lose all xp remaining and add to Danger Threat, then add the remaining needed to Danger Threat. This can only be done if there are no monsters left.

So, it's not always the case. You can only open a door whenever you want if you have the xp to do so. So it can vary. So yea, if there's no monsters left, no matter what the Danger Threat gets 10 and you lose 10 or less. And don't forget about keys! Since they lower the cost to open a door, they also lower the amount the danger threat gets. I should probably add that you can only use 1 key per door.

On a side note, this forum will eventually turn into a discussion forum for my rules as I'll be uploading future updates on PDF. Changing rules in the forum formatting is proving to be a pain in the butt. Unless of course they are short.

Edit: Had something weird happen with the quotes, and didn't explain something that well so redid it. (about 2.b.1)
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Something I forgot from your first post...
Yostage wrote:
2/3 of the overlord turns nothing happens

I think I got really unlucky with mine cause I rolled surges quite a bit. But I see that was not the case for you. Die rolls will be changed to trigger cards.

Answers for your second post

Yostage wrote:
1a) I'd clarify that in this case the monster gets a full activation, but only can use it to counterattack the player that attacked it. (even if that means disengaging from another player). This covers the case where a ranged attacker fails to kill a melee enemy, since we haven't been told yet by the rules that the monsters get to move in their counterattack. Maybe better off to define counterattack first, and then 1a and 1b can be simpler.

I agree. I know when I play as an overlord I avoid going after melee attackers most of the time cause the ranged and magic are more squishy. With these rules, it's too easy to manipulate that. Changes will be made.

Yostage wrote:
1b) wasn't totally sure how to activate ranged attackers. do they try to move out to maximum range before firing? or do they try to close on their attacker as long as they can get to min range? Or do I get to use overlord's judgement?

Another thing I need to reword. Ranged monsters try to stay away from heroes cause the melee ones can tear through them, so they try to stay away to prevent melee heroes from using Battle against them. So they will try to move 6 spaces away from their attacker (providing they have the movement) or closer to get into LOS.
Although, I am thinking about lowering this to give them a better chance to hit. So some changes may be happening for the ranged.

Yostage wrote:
3b) silver overlord rules - I think by convention this roll would be triggered on an enhancement rather than on surge or blank.

Makes sense. Same chance. However next update this will be changed anyway to provide a greater chance for cards to get played.

Yostage wrote:
How does guard work in this variant? I ended up with Leadership in this game and I was placing a lot of guard orders and then using them to interrupt counterattackers and kill them before they could land their strike. You can only trigger guard on an overlord's turn but there sort of is no overlord's turn in this variant, so it seemed to make sense that you can only trigger them during counterattacks. The only thing I don't like about how guard was working was that it turned out Attack+Guard was strictly better than Battle since you can use the 2nd attack from guard to interrupt the first attack of the turn. (and you know you're going to get a chance to interrupt because you can predict the counterattack) I don't have a great idea for fixing this, other than disabling the guard order in the variant.

Yea, I guess Guard is really overpowered. Here's the options I can think of offhand.
-Guard Order cannot be used.
-Guard Order adds to the Danger Threat
-Guard Order costs xp to use
-or make 1.f and 3.a normal rules instead of Gold and Guard cannot be used against counter-attacks.

To be honest, I've even thought about getting rid of the difficulties all together. Like you mentioned earlier, Silver seems more balanced and I've been liking straight bronze less and less. Or maybe just making 1 difficulty and labeling it as "optional for greater challenge" or something like that.


Yostage wrote:
How does the evil genius power card work? It seemed like it should maybe be simulated by pouring more danger threat per turn into the overlord. (maybe 2? 4 seems too much)

I don't have access to the game at the moment but I'll look into this.

Yostage wrote:
On Silver, I found the primary difference to be a hugely different flow of danger threat into the deck. 4 threat coming a turn (3 human characters) and double cost for opening doors makes a pretty huge difference. I had to open the first door of the game with a character who only had 1 xp, so that's 19 threat towards a power card right there. You definitely start to pile up the power cards, but I'm not sure that I was feeling pressured by the power cards. I guess I would have been threatened by the monster level ramping up to 5 from 4, but trapmaster ended up not doing much since you only draw 1/2 a card from the threat deck every turn on silver, so the chances of me finding a trap were significantly less. Something still doesn't seem quite right about the way the threat deck works - the game is substantially heavier on monsters but somehow it's not quite capturing the effects of the overlord deck. I think I want to see more cards drawn from the overlord deck and some sort of more consistent way that they get triggered. Maybe you always spawn one every turn, and the danger threat just piles up on them, triggering them whenever it can afford to pay them, or something like that. Again, I understand that you're not looking to add new complexity right now.

Being that I'm "changing" how the overlord works, this still needs some tweaking. There is no hand and no threat to spend, and I didn't want a way for you to know what was coming just as a regular game. I'll be working on these changes from your playtest and post them as soon as I can.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Yost
United States
Bothell
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I think letting the heroes pool XP for door purposes feels right. It felt like I was being punished for not stacking the XP on a single player otherwise.

http://www.descentinthedark.com/_e_/evil_genius.php

If the only way to open a door without killing all spawned enemies is to pay the XP, I think I'd modify the spawn rules to add the constraint that the enemies should be as close as possible to the heroes. Otherwise I got into a situation where I'd spawn kobolds at the entrance glyph and the heroes were forced to run several turns back towards them.

I don't know. You could maybe just say that one power card gets played every time you open a door and do away with the danger threat->power card tracking entirely and door opening cost. And then the threat/turn could be used solely in some way to play traps and spawns. Maybe we should talk about the high level design goals - which things are supposed to rebalance which things?

In solo, we've immediately lost these things and we have to make up for them
1) 1 monster activation / turn
2) 1 threat per player, 2 overlord cards per player
3) -3 conquest every 18 turns

I think we could argue that the whole counterattack rules are supposed to rebalance 1. In general I'd try to play around with the counterattack rules until they totally rebalance 1 and then we can use other systems to cover 2/3. I'm not sure whether I'd say the counterattack rules totally balance 1, but it's fun now so I'd leave it
In silver solo you play an overlord card once every two turns. In general the D12 typically covers the cost. I think this is probably tracking behind #2. I would expect an overlord could play more cards in a typical game.
Then we have the danger threat system which is basically spawning in all of the power cards against you, at a minimum speed of 0.5 power cards per room but typically more like 0.8 (in my estimation). These do seem to come in a little faster than in a typical game, so we've gained a little ground against the heroes.
I think the overlord card play probably just needs to be modified. It sounds like you're already working on that.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Christopher Ebert
United States
Cape Coral
Florida
flag msg tools
Solo Gamers are NOT lonely!
badge
Together We Game Alone (1 Player Guild)
mbmbmbmbmb
Hmm. Evil Genius. I have an idea. Cards, like Evil Genius, that lets the Overlord draw extra cards, get's to draw the extra amount without a roll needed and must be drawn and resolved first before the regular roll for a card. Perhaps that will balance things a little more and make that card have a good purpose and make it where at least 1 card will come out each turn. You would still have to roll the d12 though for threat. Thoughts?

Edit: Actually, come to think of it. I do have rule 2.e.2 for the gold difficulty. Which allows cards to be automatically paid with no roll needed. Perhaps I should do the same for Evil Genius. Keep things a bit simpler.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Scott Yost
United States
Bothell
Washington
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Played again tonight with a friend. Quest 1 w/ 4 chars. I think we ended with 17 conquest.
This is the first time we've finished so I got to experience the last room, which was something I wanted to see. The boss fights are lot bloodier in this mod since the enemies are actually going to get to activate, possibly multiple times. This is a good change and does make it harder. We were able to block Narthak from doing too much damage due to good placement and Ox Tattoo, but it was difficult and we were definitely in danger, so I think that was good.
We got every power card on the table but they're really not that effective. DOOM is okay. Trapmaster is quite weak since so few traps actually get a chance to come out. Hordes of the Things was primarily annoying - it filled up the final room with so many beastmasters that I couldn't get Narthak in range to hit the heroes. I'm musing over some ideas on how to revamp that mechanism. Will type something up tomorrow.

Some more specific notes:

We played without guard tonight. No guard is probably the right move for this variant.

In the first quest, you have a door before the first zone. I'm assuming that doesn't cost you 10 XP, since you can't possibly have any.

Ran into a case where at the time of counterattack, there was no legal counterattacker, but at the end of the player's turn, there was a legal move for the overlord. The overlord should probably take this move. It wasn't clear from the rules.

Modification to trap rules - first priority is legal targets. (sometimes the first target by the targetting rules is standing in a space that can't be targeted by a trap, for example).

One player tonight had Aura, so at first we had enemies w/ 1 HP suiciding on their counterattack. Later we decided that the overlord has the freedom to make better moves than dying and stopped doing that.

We did play with paying for door costs across the shared XP, and it felt right. We also played with spiders worth base 2 XP instead of 4.

I think I'd make a rule covering the tactics for the counterattack. This would be an ordered set of rules kinda like Castle Ravenloft, but it'll have more flexibility in it for the overlord. All of the ocunterattack\activate monster rules can just refer to this rule on how to do an overlord monster activation.

1) on counterattack, activate the monster who was attacked. If the monster that was attacked died, overlord gets to choose which monster activates and then continues following these tactics.
2) if possible, do the most damage possible that includes the player that attacked. Ranged attackers try to move out to 4+ range when attacking. Melee attackers try to strike and then step away from the players, preferably in a direction away from the nearest unexplored area.
3) if you cannot damage the player that attacked, try to do the most damage possible to the players in general, following the above attack tactics.
4) if none of those are possible, move a monster closer to the players.
5) In general, always try to make the best overlord move possible while generally following the above rules. Trying to counterattack the player who attacked if possible is required, but all other tactical advice is just a guideline.

This would have covered the aura case - melee monsters would have failed step 2 since they would die instantly, so they'd get to 3 and go hit another character. It would also cover the case we discussed yesterday where a melee char blocks for a ranged character.
3 
 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.