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Subject: RE: The First Custom Scenario rss

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Gregory Smith
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Link to map: http://boardgamegeek.com/image/1827064/the-kings-armory


Lord Sorymon has managed to conquer The King's Armory. Fortunately, the King has escaped with his engineers. Unfortunately, the engineers left behind some blue prints for their creations. Lord Sorymon has copied them and is attempting to send them out to his colleagues in the world. Lacking the force of arms to reconquer his castle, the king has commanded his heroes to defend the roads outside it to prevent those plans from reaching Lord Sorymon's colleagues.


I am uncertain exactly how to proceed with the play for this scenario, which is why I would like the help of anyone with a PnP (and if you are from the future, an owner of this game), to help out. As of now, I am working with the following:

Sorymon was chosen because he appeared to be the most intelligent boss, and I believe and evil mastermind has a better feel to it than an all powerful titan from the sky or some such. Feel free to debate with me on this point. Also, we may have Sorymon send out another Boss while he sits tight in his castle. Game-play wise, I am a fan of this idea. Thematically, I am not.

Remove Siege from all monster levels. Sorymon has already conquered the castle, he no longer needs those machines. Alternate Idea: siege attacks towers. Seems fun and thematic, but I am afraid it will be difficult to balance.

Monster Paths:

Flying monsters will take the top right path, which I will for now on refer to the Flyer's Path. If the monster would follow the yellow trail, it waits until the second square, as per normal.

Use standard Odd/Even splits for all other monsters. They will ignore the first branch in the road and wait until the split.

Alternate idea:
The monsters decide their paths based off of damage type. So melee would follow one path, ranged another, super natural the last. On one hand, you get to tailor your defence to specific threats. On the other, you get to tailor your defence to specific threats.

I believe The Boss's path will be decided by a roll of the D12:
1-4: Bottom Left Path
5-8: Bottom Right Path
9-12: Flyer's Path.


Monster Wave Ideas:

*Use the standard wave chart as you would for a normal game.

*We work on designing a custom one.

*We do not have waves.

Using the standard chart is fairly self explanatory. Simply treat this scenario like a normal game with a twist.

Designing a custom one would require work, but I believe after enough play testing we could do so. Keep in mind we would have to consider different number of players as we do so.

And not doing waves is an idea I am toying around with. A new monster (or several monsters) come in every foe's turn (or other turn), gradually increasing in difficulty (level and number). Gold can be spent at the start of the Player's Turn, and you draw a gold card every X points, where you get one point per level per monster kill. E.G. Kill a level one monster, get 1 point. Get a level four monster, get 4 points. After getting X points, reset your point counter to 0 and draw a coin card. Say X is 9 (will probably be lower). Kill a level 5 monster one round, and two level twos the next, and you get to draw a card. In reality, a single level five monster is usually more difficult than five level one monsters, so this would take some tinkering. And in this case you would have to buy first-aid for your heroes and hirelings since there is no between rounds for you to heal in. We would have to set the price on this as well.

Path Ideas✓
Wave Ideas ✓ (kinda)

All that is really left is Win/Lose conditions ( I believe).

Win: (one of these)
Defeat the Boss as you would in a normal game. At this point, the castle will be weakened enough to allow the heroes to reclaim it.

Build the Armory Weapon. With this powerful weapon built, the heroes will have enough force to raid the castle and slay Lord Sorymon and his defenders. I am in favor of this approach if we do not do waves.

Lose:

Have a monster exit the map. With the plans in the world, the heroes have failed and the monsters shall soon send powerful weapons against them.

Have X monsters exit the map. As the first monster leaves, it is attacked by the wild animals of the land. They slay it, but not without taking serious damage, and they flee the area in panic. I am thinking one free monster per a lane, or three free monsters total. Actual numbers subject to change with testing and your input.


Those are my thoughts on this scenario. It still requires a lot of fleshing out, and unfortunately with the semester ending, I am not certain how much time I will have to do so. So I would greatly appreciate all the input everyone else is willing to give. Let's try to make the first custom scenario a success.


Map Edit:
The more I look at the map, the more I think the flying root needs to be extended. I won't be uploading a new map (unless people want me to), but I would probably add one more straight tile so it ends curving into a corner. This way the fastest of enemies, the Wind Drake, will take a total of 3 turns (2 Ally turns) to exit the map, at least. In the original set up, it would take 2(1) even if a Psion moved it back two spaces or your Mage slowed it once. Though having the Psion tank it is still an option, but that would all but force players to play a certain strategy, and I do not want that.
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Wayne Schulatz
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Using Sorymon seems fine to me.

I think it would be best/easiest to just have the monsters come in the normal roll in. I actually really dislike the idea of having them divided by damage type. Not only does it not make sense thematically, but it would totally change aspects of game play.

For a lose condition, having one monster leave the map seems a bit tough. But having one free-be per path doesn't make sense thematically. (It did make sense and balance well in Plants vs Zombies, however... so I get the idea.) We could say the gnomes have set up smaller scale creations and the end up each path that can handle only one monster. Like an ancient, fantasy-themed lawn mower.

By simply choosing a Boss, taking out Siege, and flipping the game play (monsters trying to get out of three as opposed to into one) I think you have designed a very interesting change of pace that can be simple to execute.

I will test it out this weekend and give you more feedback. Great work.
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Gregory Smith
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The way the split made sense thematically to me was that an archer could more easily move through a forest, a brute would take the open road, and a mystic monster would travel through arcane paths. This would be shown by having each take one of the three splits. And I agree that it would probably change game play too much, but it may be fun to try once.

The make-shift gnomish designs is a much better idea than having the forest animals attack. If they were willing to do that, the monsters probably wouldn't have gotten in in the first place.

I am looking forward to your feedback after testing it.
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Tobias Wilker
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Loosing condition ideas
To the losing condition:

You could say when one monster leaves the map you can sacrifice (meaning "normal" death) a hero (also hireables?) to insta kill the monster. If one monster leaves the map you loose. You can not insta kill the boss.

The flavor of this is, that you can sacrifice someone to easily kill a level 5 monster, but you have a disadvantage of having one defeated ally. The story is, that the hero make some suicide attack (E.G. Midnight would throw all energy she has at the monster).

Winning condition:

I like both ideas. Why not have both?

What do you think of the losing conditions?
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Gregory Smith
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I am not a fan of sacrificing a hero, because that would then mean eliminating a player from the game. I would rather have everyone win together or lose together, as fits a cooperative game. Sacrificing a hireable may work, but I cannot think of why that would make sense thematically. And if you are at the point where monsters are leaking, you are going to need as tough of a defense as you can get, which means keeping your hireables alive.
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Tobias Wilker
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Maybe I confused a little thing here. Want I meant was to knock out the hero - loosing all HP and revive in the next healing phase. With Hireables this would mean, they are dead. But I am not sure if they should be able to do it.
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Gregory Smith
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Oh, that is not where my thoughts were going. That may work, and much better than player elimination, but I still am not a fan of it. I feel like you should have to defend within the rules of the game. If we find it is too hard using the standard wave chart, we will make our own easier one. Ideally, the scenario should be balanced enough that you do not need to resort to that.
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Wayne Schulatz
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OK... I had my first attempt tonight and it failed miserably. Admittedly, I may have tried an odd strategy.

I chose to play a single hero game with the Mage. My idea was to have tons of control. I would get the Psi Hireable and control the entire battlefield with slows, confusions, re-rolls, and mind cages.

It didn't work.

By Wave 2 I had missed my mind cage twice and by the third turn one Flyer had escaped.

On Wave 3 I had a level 2 Psi, a level 1 foot soldier, and a level 1 archer. By the second turn my tanking foot soldier was one away from death and a Goblin mutant made a break through. He gets to attack twice per turn, and through an unfortunate crit he took out my archer. The Mage then became the closest Hero to the Goblin (bad planning on my part) and was eventually killed. Game over.

The paths are short. That's not necessarily bad, but when a monster can escape in three turns... that's fast.

I also realized an interesting point. Unlike the normal game, it does not matter how much damage the monster does if it gets through. So that changed who I decided to tank or attack. If some one had to get through, might as well let it be a tough guy... since damage is irrelevant.

I may try again. Despite my epic failure, I did enjoy the set up.
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Gregory Smith
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I managed my first trial of the map right now. I used the best combo I know of (Ranger/Mage), and barely won, due to a whole lot of luck.

It started off pretty bad, Wave 1 was all level 2 monsters, not the worst, but not the easiest. Unfortunately, I only got 200 gold for that wave, which I used to get a pair of foot soldiers.

Wave 2 was neither hard nor easy, save for one War Mage which nearly killed one of my foot soldiers. I got 400 gold for that wave, which I used to upgrade my half dead foot soldier, and buy the remaining two.

Wave 3 was incredibly difficult. I was up against a War Mage and two Goblin Mutants. After crossing my fingers and hoping the monsters do not get crits (they didn't), I managed to squeak by with all of my foot soldiers being in the double digits for damage, and Amos have 3/4 of his health gone. And then I got madly lucky and received 850! gold after the wave. Mixed with the 50 I had left over from last round, and money I gained from selling my starting towers, I managed to have the 1k necessary to fund the armory weapon* and kick Lord Sorymon out and reclaim the castle. If that went on for another round, I am almost certain I would have started leaking, though maybe I could have put that 900 gold to good enough use to defend the road.

That being said, I am currently proposing the following modifications:
1. You must survive the next wave after you fund the Armory Weapon. That would prevent someone from doing the cheap thing and selling your starting towers to hurry up and win (Like I did).

2. A -1 to the D12 when rolling for monsters. You said it was too hard, and I found it to be too hard using the strategy I know best. I think slightly nerfing the monsters should be checked out. Though of course 2 play throughs does not a play test make. Alternatively, less harsh loss conditions. Maybe each road has a crude wall at the end 10 health strong, with engineers ready to pour boiling oil on those who trespass. Exception to flying since they would of course just fly over it. Maybe a balista for them which only has a single shot (materials are in short supply).





Why did you choose to play a solo mage? Of all the heroes available, I figured he would be he last one to be played by himself, since he his damage out put is low and his enchant weapons works wonders with other heroes. (Think of Valcor doing 5 SN damage to Goblin Mutants, or Cyrus getting that +1 damage to both of his swings).




*I was doing a 5 round game because I was tired and lacking in components (I left my dice and wound markers behind, though fortunately the internet was of help).
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Wayne Schulatz
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I tried a solo Mage knowing it probably wouldn't work, but I thought it would be cool if the original plan of battlefield control did work. Plus I also wanted to try the scenario with only one hero for variety's sake. I may still try again with only Valcor.
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