Arto Hietanen
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I have bought all the DC sets to augment the DDAS games, save the Heart of Cormyr (HoC), as I haven't figured an easy way to get the allies to play. For myself the standard method is lacking, as I keep the encounter cards separate with each game and if I would buy the HoC, I would like to be able to easily use it with all of the games. The obvious answer would be to order more of these Ally Spawning Encounter cards but I would rather not do that.

So do you - the good people of BGG - have any nice ideas for how the allies could come to play. I prefer ideas that do not make me buy any new stuff and are not fiddly (I don't like rolling and consulting a table). I would also like that meeting them is mostly random, which rules out hiring them at the start of the game and getting them to appear by using XP.

As I use monster and treasure tokens in all games, one idea that I have been toying with is to use the 4 monster token (or some villain token) from LoD to signify the appearance of an ally. Still, even that is not perfect as there is a disconnect with the picture in the token and what happens as a result. So perhaps having ally tokens that look like monster tokens would probably be the best option, but as there is no such thing I am open to other suggestions.

Please tell me if you have any Ally variants in play, or if you have any ideas how the heroes could meet them randomly without fuzz (with only one encounter card and three different encounter decks).

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Mark Campo
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also what are you looking for more opportunities to get an ally or just more thematic story wise?

3 ideas A B and C plus some more if i think of them...
…A
Find the missing adventuring party (add on rule)
Using DC sets, and D&DAS sets
When ever you enter a “Named tile”, also draw a DC treasure token (1 2 3) this number represents signs or clues that your quarry is near,
When you have 5 of more clue tokens place the, Ally who joins your side.
( I also used a highlighter to colour some of my tokens red which are negative clues,
I used this system for hunt for Gollum type trek adventure, I should write it up )

...A.1
Use a highlighter pen on a "Ashardalon" treasure token to make it look different so when that token is drawn it triggers an ally appearing,


….B
Or you could just say if X name tile is drawn draw an ally instead of monster
E,g X= chapel or secret cave or vault,



….C
When you draw a 3 or 4 monster token the monsters are escorting a prisoner as well as the monsters play a ally card the ally won’t act until all escort monsters are killed.

..C.1 highlighter pen a Zero monster token, this token represent a injured ally left for dead, if its does not receive any healing it will die at the start of the discovering hero's next turn,

(so 1 full round to try and heal, the ally will be ignore by monsters this round, any source or amount of healing will activate the ally at full health, you may spend a surge token to activate the ally if no other healing is available)



...D
when you roll a 20 in combat instead of leveling up draw an ally card.
(maybe or maybe not spend XP)


...E your villain token idea
the Jarl Axle or Artemis villein tokens at least look vaguely Human mercenary looking,


...F if your using Ravenloft theres a crypt tile that says summon "Strad" when that appears instead of "Strad" summon a ghostly ally!

...G if you pull the pit or cage trap also draw an ally in the same trap as you :-) gain the ally only when the trap is disabled. so and action an 10+ roll
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K.Y. Wong
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Within your "design parameters" laugh, I feel the best would be a variant of the mechanic used by Ashardalon's special encounter attack card. The basic gist is that the single Ally encounter card gets shuffled into the top X number of cards in the Encounter Deck.

So we have 2 "gears" to adjust to suit our taste:
1. What triggers the shuffling of the Ally card into the Encounter Deck.
2. How many cards should the Ally card be shuffled with.

This would provide 2 levels of randomization.
[Edit] A 3rd level of randomization is provided by randomly drawing the actual Ally that appears.

E.g. When you use the 1st Healing Surge, you can choose to shuffle the Ally card into the top 10 encounter cards. When you use the 2nd Healing Surge, you can shuffle it into the top 5 cards, IF you have not already done so.


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Tristan Hall
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Do you use the treasure chest tokens from WoA? (We have them appear on black triangle tiles). If you open one and get an Empty result you could replace it with an Ally instead.
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Mark Campo
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like that healing surge idea! just like in the real RPG D&D when the DM bails the party out of a fight, i know i've used that a fair few times!

"the city watch turn up, Elminisnter turns ups, a passing ranger joins the frey etc.." :-p
 
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Arto Hietanen
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Thank you all for the wonderful ideas! Currently I am mostly inclined to use Milarky's A1 or E (good idea to use a more ally-looking villain). Chromaticdragon's idea still has the "chore" of moving the encounter card between the games, though this would still be more manageable as the card would be easy to find after the game. Still, triggering this to healing surge use seems nice.

For Ninjadorg: I do use the chest's, but actually I quite often forget to use them. My current rule is to place a chest when I spawn 5+ xp of monsters in one round (using the monster tokens and DC monsters, it is quite easy), but I am not very pleased with the rule. They seem to be more trouble than they are worth. Placing them (to tiles) behind doors could probably work for WoA, but as the other games lack them that is not the panacea for all games. Also I have a bigger mental disconnect with finding allies in chests than from treasures (I understand that you are not actually proposing that, it is just that the treasure token is more an immaterial bonus for killing the monsters and chests are physical objects).

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Rhys Corlett
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I normally summon an ally after using a Healing Surge... after all, someone must have come by to help me up.
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Arto Hietanen
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I finally bought the Heart of Cormyr DC set. I have decided to use the Artemis and Jarlaxle villain tokens mixed with the CR's monster tokens to mark the appearance of the ally in all games (CR/WoA/LoD). I also added the ally encounter from the Heart of Cormyr to CR's encounter deck to very slightly lessen its brutality.
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