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Subject: Doom Track too slow to rise? rss

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Peter O'Hanraha-Hanrahan
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Newbie question here. I've now played four games of the vanilla AH now (I have a couple of expansions, but haven't added them yet) and on each occasion I noticed that the doom track never really got too close to making the GOO appear. I looked through the Mythos cards and noticed that there are only eleven different locations that a gate can show up, so if the GOO needs let's say thirteen, he's unlikely to make an appearance. I haven't read the cards too closely because I like the idea of them being fresh each time, but are there enough doom track adds in them to make the game close?

Maybe I'm doing it wrong. I add a doom token every time I open a new gate. I don't add one when I have a gate burst, and I take one off the doom track if I use an Elder Card Unique Item. Is that right?

(The terror track doesn't seem to move much either, but I've read here that that's a common problem in the base game.)
 
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Byron Campbell
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Try searching for StormKnight's variant. It addresses just this.

If you close without sealing a gate and another gate opens at that location, that is the main other way the doom track rises, but some encounters and mythos cards can affect it as well.

Edit: the GOO also wakes if you have enough gates open at one time, so if you aren't closing, you will likely lose that way.
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Krawhitham B
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Vanilla Arkham can be easy once you get the hang of it.

Maybe you could start the game with 1 or 2 doom tokens, just to spice things up. Another suggestion would be to remove the Elder Sign items from the game.
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M.C.Crispy
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Simply counting the number of locations where a Gate may appear and assuming that this is the maximum number to which the Doom Track may rise is a common over-simplification of the threat posed by the Doom Track. Unless you Seal every Gate you Close, you may get a Gate opening in the same Location multiple times - this is very likely with some Locations. Truly, if you believe that it's "numerically impossible" to lose base Arkham, you are very, very wrong.
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Peter O'Hanraha-Hanrahan
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Thanks all. I didn't say it was "numerically impossible" at all, I was primarily seeing if a) I was playing correctly and b) if there was anything I can do to increase the chances of the Doom Track rising. I had a look at the StormKnight variant - thanks Byron! - but I notice that he says that adding Dunwich sorts out the majority of my issues anyway, so I'm just going to try that next or, as Krawitham suggests, adding some doom tokens to begin with.

As side note, why would you close a gate without sealing it? Again, maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I never jump into a gate (unless I've been forced by an encounter to do so) without having enough clue tokens.
 
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Teeka
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Fruit Eating Bear wrote:

As side note, why would you close a gate without sealing it? Again, maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I never jump into a gate (unless I've been forced by an encounter to do so) without having enough clue tokens.
I'm not sure if you read Byron's edit to his post, but just to repeat that part: the GOO awakens when there's too many gates open. So in an average game, you need to close some gates without sealing every now and then to prevent that.

How many investigators are you using, by the way? That number usually influences the difficulty (in both directions) of the different threats (gates, rumors, monsters, terror track).

Oh, and going by what you say in your first post, maybe you have happened to get 1 or 2 Elder Sign cards each game so far? If so, then please note that that's very lucky and will make the game a lot easier for sure.

edits: missing words, sorry
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M.C.Crispy
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Fair points!

Why would you Close without Sealing? Because you are close to the Gate Limit and don't have time to collect sufficient Clues; you only took 5 Clues on your Gate run and had a little accident in OW and now only have 4; it was the last open Gate on the board and you were seizing the opportunity of an All Gates Closed victory; you were playing an expansion and were finagling the probabilities of Gate Bursts, or - as you suggest - you were surprised by the Gate. I'm not sure that's all of them, but that's a starter.

If you are still unconvinced that Doom is a "real and present danger" you should look at the stats Tibs collects http://bit.ly/1aIAGT9. Unfortunately, I can't see the stats by expansion, but the proportion of losses due to "Doom Track filled" should hopefully persuade you. There's a little variability here too, depending on the number of Investigators, for instance low counts are buffered against Doom because of the high Gate Limit (but Terror and Monsters become an issue)
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Peter O'Hanraha-Hanrahan
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Maybe I've been lucky, but I've never been close to having too many gates open...yet! The most, I think, I've ever had were five. This is, I guess, why I've never had the need to close a gate without sealing.

I always play with three investigators. Do you think that's a good total?

I've had one Elder card in one of the games, but not the other three.

I've never heard of the All Gates Closed victory! I'm off now to look that up.
 
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M.C.Crispy
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Fruit Eating Bear wrote:
Maybe I've been lucky, but I've never been close to having too many gates open...yet! The most, I think, I've ever had were five. This is, I guess, why I've never had the need to close a gate without sealing.

I always play with three investigators. Do you think that's a good total?
I can't answer as I've never played with that Investigator count IIRC. However the generally agreed sweet spot is 4. Again, go look at the stats. Investigator count affects the type of game you play: higher counts tend to win by Sealing, lower counts have a higher proportion of wins by Final Battle.
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Gert Meyer
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Fruit Eating Bear wrote:
As side note, why would you close a gate without sealing it? Again, maybe I'm doing it wrong, but I never jump into a gate (unless I've been forced by an encounter to do so) without having enough clue tokens.


Well, first of all, as others have pointed out, the Gate limit is forcing you to close Gates now, sealing be damned. The Gate limit is the most common way for me to have the Great Old One appear and subsequently lose the game.

Secondly, Clue tokens are usually in woefully short supply and can most of the time only be gathered at a rate of 1-2 per round for each Investigator (if at all).

Thirdly, as long as a Gate is open, it will spew out Monster Surges every time it comes up in the Mythos phase, intefering with Investigator movement and eventually causing the Horror track to rise due to reaching the Monster limit in the Outskirts. If that begins to become a problem, you may want to put a stop to that by closing a few Gates even if you cannot seal them.

Additionally, you may be in urgent need of Gate trophies for Disturbing the Dead.
 
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Allan Cybulskie
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The fewer investigators you play with, the more gates you can have open before awakening the AO. If you played with 8 players, you could only have 5 open, while with 3 it's 7. This is reasonable because it's easier to close and seal gates with more investigators available, but it is also the case that if you manage to have seals or open gates on the more commonly hit options you're not likely to hit the 7 limit, and so won't be forced to close gates just to keep that number down with the base game.
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