Cyrus Tucker
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Just to make sure I'm getting everything straight in my head, I wanted to post how I think the new expansions work and make sure I was right. I also wanted to solicit opinions on how many/which of each kind of expansion I should get. Over time, I may eventually acquire everything just for posterity's sake (in case this ever appreciates in value when it goes OOP like the 1st edition did), but I'll try to keep it to what I would need to keep me satisfied for the next year or two.

Let's start with Lieutenant Packs. So Lieutenant Packs just include a Lieutenant figurine and a plot deck. This plot deck is sort of like an Overlord deck, except it functions off of generating Threat. Only one plot deck can be used per campaign. Therefore, it doesn't make sense to me to buy more than 2 of these in the beginning. That way the Overlord has a choice of which plot deck to integrate without going overboard with it. The figures themselves are a nice, but completely unnecessary, addition.

Next we'll move on to small box expansions. These include Lair of the Wyrm and The Trollfens. As far as I can tell, these add more everything: new Heroes, classes, Overlord cards, conditions, quests, etc. These integrate into any campaign through the use of Rumor cards. Basically, it makes sense to get at least 1 of these to start off with as it can be added to the first campaign without issue and increases the base choices available in the game. However, I wasn't sure if it made sense to add more than one. Can they be used interchangeably, i.e. would I just basically shuffle all expansions' components in with the stuff from other expansions? Would this dilute the number of quests that might be seen from any one expansion, or would it add some much needed variety? Basically, is it going to be enough to stick with just one of these, or am I going to want to get 2 or even more as time wears on?

Next is big box expansions. As I understand it, these add everything a small box does, but more of it. The biggest difference is they feature entirely new campaigns. So it doesn't make sense to buy one of these until the base game has been completed at least once, maybe twice, since it's going to be an entirely new experience. However, it does make sense to buy all of these eventually since they're entirely new campaigns, right?

Finally is the Hero and Monster expansions. These appear to be completely weaksauce to me. From what I can tell, all they add are a few new Hero and Monster varieties and two quests for the exact same price as a small box expansion. Unless Hero or Monster variety is desperately needed, I don't see any point in purchasing any of these, as you just get better value from the other expansion types.

Okay, that's my thoughts. Please feel free to question or suggest different numbers/types of expansions to buy or to recommend which I should get first. I plan on playing on Saturday and picking up some stuff on the way to the game, so all responses are appreciated.

EDIT: Almost forgot one more important question! Is an extra set of dice an extreme necessity? Like, will I get along just fine with the dice included in the box, or should I just go ahead and splurge and buy an extra set (or even more than one)? I will have a full 5 player group if that helps.
 
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Rafal Areinu
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You're right about Lieutenants. They are completely unnecessary, though having one or two isn't bad. It's nice to have final boss from the campaign you're doing(though you won't be able to summon it as an Agent).

Small box expansions can be also used as mini-campaigns consisting of 4 quests. If you do that you won't play quests from any other campaign. If you integrate it into full campaign you will be able to play up to 2 quests from single small box expansion. Other things(items, monsters, heroes, rumor cards, hidden rooms, new status effects) can be used though. You shuffle them together. It will dilute things a bit though. For example you will see less of weapons that inflict burn if you have all the expansions, as there will be lower probability to draw those cards.

Also, if you are anything like me it will irritate you to no end that some of your archetypes will have more classes than others if you buy single small box expansion. Buying 2 small box expansions will fix that.

Small box expansions also come with hidden rooms, which are much more fun than 'nothing' search card that it replaces. Those can be used in any expansion too.

Big box expansions: you pretty much got it. Though they add much more stuff than small box expansions and aren't that much more expensive. I would suggest getting big box expansions first. Those new campaigns are really good. Also, your overlord might not want to play rumor cards from small box expansions anyway, as those are generally working against him.

Hero and monster collection: yup, it's pretty much for the collectors.

You might also consider Conversion Kit. It adds a lot of monsters and heroes, but without figures. If you have other minis to proxy those, or Runebound games then go for it. CK has a lot of Runebound heroes, so that's always a plus. Proxying monsters with monsters found in base game is also easy. I used Barghest as Hellhound, Ettin as Giant and Troll. Shadow dragons as Cave dragons etc. It's really cheap and adds a lot of hero and monster variety. It generally has the same monsters and heroes as are now released in hero and monster collection, but the collection is changing stats slightly on some cards to re-balance things.

My group manages without 2nd set, but we once played with 2(my friend brought his) and it was much smoother experience. I don't think more than 2 would make that much of a difference.

Conclusion:
Buying order that I suggest:
1. Conversion Kit
2. Big box expansion that sounds like more fun to you. City or spiders?
3(optional). Small box expansion if you want hidden rooms.
4. Another big box expansion.

By then you will know what you want. Big box expansion have much more value for the money than small box expansions.
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Jonathan Cowlishaw
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That's a good summary of what each type of expansion adds.

You did ask if the (small) expansions can be interchanged. The way the rumor cards work is that they are part of a rumor deck. The overlord will draw three of them at the beginning of the campaign, and can choose when/if to play them. So it is possible to play the three minor campaigns (two small expansions and the heroes and monsters) during the same major campaign, but it wouldn't be very likely.

The other components (such as new items) can be mixed into their respective decks.

The extra dice pack isn't necessary, but with 4 players plus an overlord it is nice to have.
 
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Drew Thomson
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SparkingConduit wrote:
Let's start with Lieutenant Packs... it doesn't make sense to me to buy more than 2 of these in the beginning... The figures themselves are a nice, but completely unnecessary, addition.


You hit the nail on the head.

Quote:
Next we'll move on to small box expansions... These integrate into any campaign through the use of Rumor cards.


Except for self-contained "mini-campaigns" like that found in the Trollfens rulebook.

Quote:
Can they be used interchangeably, i.e. would I just basically shuffle all expansions' components in with the stuff from other expansions?


Yes.

Quote:
Would this dilute the number of quests that might be seen from any one expansion, or would it add some much needed variety?


Both.

Quote:
Basically, is it going to be enough to stick with just one of these, or am I going to want to get 2 or even more as time wears on?


If you like the game, more is always better.

Quote:
Next is big box expansions... it doesn't make sense to buy one of these until the base game has been completed at least once, maybe twice, since it's going to be an entirely new experience. However, it does make sense to buy all of these eventually since they're entirely new campaigns, right?


Right on both counts.

Quote:
Finally is the Hero and Monster expansions... Unless Hero or Monster variety is desperately needed, I don't see any point in purchasing any of these, as you just get better value from the other expansion types.


True. You could get these later if you really want to increase the variety. But in the beginning, your money is best spent on the "normal" expansions.

Quote:
Is an extra set of dice an extreme necessity?


Not necessary, just nice to have.
 
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Johannes Benedikt
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Much has been said already so here are a few things I would add.

Small box expansions: These boxes will add the least new monsters and heroes (I think it's 2 heroes and 2 monstergroups) to the game. Aside from a few more quests they also add a new gameplay-mechanic called the secret rooms which you get via search cards.

Big box expansions: You are not entirely right about them. They add a lot of new monsters and heroes, hero classes, overlord cards/classes, items and so on you can use throughout the entire first campaign you are playing. If you feel that the base game is lacking most in monster variety and are sure you are going to play more than 1-2 campaigns I think these expansions make the most sense to buy

Monster and hero collections: These boxes will get you the numbers of monsters and heroes from big box expansions for the price of less than a small box expansion. It basically is the right expansion if you just want more monsters and heroes and really want good looking miniatures for those.

Conversion Kit: Gives you the same monsters and heroes the "monster and hero collections" will get you excpet you will get all at once (25 monsters and 45 heroes). However you only get the cards and no miniatures what so ever. There are good looking 3d tokens for these monsters and heroes in the file section of BGG, but they still remain cardboard-standups you might not want to mix with the highly detailed miniatures.

Extra dice: The base game comes with only one blue die you need for every attack. I found it to be a little bit annoying to constantly pass this die around, however I never really considered this to be really some major annoyance. Then again I never played with 5 people.
The problem for me is that I really only consider the blue die problematic and a set of dies still comes with only one blue die (not enough for everyone to have his own).
 
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Areinu wrote:
Conclusion:
Buying order that I suggest:
1. Conversion Kit
2. Big box expansion that sounds like more fun to you. City or spiders?
3(optional). Small box expansion if you want hidden rooms.
4. Another big box expansion.

I'd agree with this, inserting 1 or 2 lieutenants after the Conversion Kit. One thing to be aware of is that although you only need (and can use 1) plot deck throughout 1 whole campaign, you may want to have some flexibility on which one you choose after you see what heroes and classes are selected.

The Conversion Kit is far, far and away the best value of anything. I find the 3d tokens available as a download here on BGG to be even more thematic than the miniatures included in the game, unless you take the time, effort, and expense to paint them. And even then once you weigh the, "this looks different" factor against, "this plays different" instead of using the same monsters over and over, it's simply no contest. And as someone else said, you can generally use the miniatures included to proxy for most of the monster groups. If you use flesh molders for sorcerers or ettins for giants or elementals for golems or barghests for wendigos, frankly nobody will take 2 seconds to think that it doesn't work.
 
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Scott Yost
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for my money, a second set of dice has one of the best value/$ ratios for any of the upgrades. Not having to pass the dice between the overlord and the players anymore is great.
 
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Cyrus Tucker
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Mat628 wrote:
Areinu wrote:
Conclusion:
Buying order that I suggest:
1. Conversion Kit
2. Big box expansion that sounds like more fun to you. City or spiders?
3(optional). Small box expansion if you want hidden rooms.
4. Another big box expansion.

I'd agree with this, inserting 1 or 2 lieutenants after the Conversion Kit. One thing to be aware of is that although you only need (and can use 1) plot deck throughout 1 whole campaign, you may want to have some flexibility on which one you choose after you see what heroes and classes are selected.

The Conversion Kit is far, far and away the best value of anything. I find the 3d tokens available as a download here on BGG to be even more thematic than the miniatures included in the game, unless you take the time, effort, and expense to paint them. And even then once you weigh the, "this looks different" factor against, "this plays different" instead of using the same monsters over and over, it's simply no contest. And as someone else said, you can generally use the miniatures included to proxy for most of the monster groups. If you use flesh molders for sorcerers or ettins for giants or elementals for golems or barghests for wendigos, frankly nobody will take 2 seconds to think that it doesn't work.


It's a nice suggestion, but I have neither the time nor the patience to PnP anything. I've always sucked hard at arts and crafts since I was a kid, so I would probably find it too frustrating, and monster/hero variety is not an issue. Not yet, at least. I just wouldn't feel right buying the kit either. Eventually, stock will run out and I would hate to be the guy that deprived someone who actually has a 1st edition copy the chance to upgrade for a reasonable price, you know?
 
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SparkingConduit wrote:
I just wouldn't feel right buying the kit either. Eventually, stock will run out and I would hate to be the guy that deprived someone who actually has a 1st edition copy the chance to upgrade for a reasonable price, you know?

I wouldn't worry about that — the CK is inexpensive and in ready supply, and there are over 300 users on BGG who have it up for trade. I doubt it's ever going to be an expensive item, even if stock runs out, especially with the hero and monster packs coming out steadily.
 
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Rafal Areinu
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This game has 2 years, and CK came early. If someone had 1st edition and haven't upgraded for 2 years then they probably won't.

Also, many 1st edition owners don't like 2nd edition anyway.
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Cyrus Tucker
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Areinu wrote:
This game has 2 years, and CK came early. If someone had 1st edition and haven't upgraded for 2 years then they probably won't.

Also, many 1st edition owners don't like 2nd edition anyway.


Okay, that's a fair point. I guess I just really can't get past the fact that I hate buying something where I'd have to proxy everything. It also feels like way too much at once. I don't need 25 heroes and 45 monsters when there's a decent amount of variety in the game already. Would it be nice? Sure. But it's something where if I can add it over time with the Hero and Monster packs, I'll do it, even if it means wasting more money.
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Johannes Benedikt
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SparkingConduit wrote:
Mat628 wrote:
Areinu wrote:
Conclusion:
Buying order that I suggest:
1. Conversion Kit
2. Big box expansion that sounds like more fun to you. City or spiders?
3(optional). Small box expansion if you want hidden rooms.
4. Another big box expansion.

I'd agree with this, inserting 1 or 2 lieutenants after the Conversion Kit. One thing to be aware of is that although you only need (and can use 1) plot deck throughout 1 whole campaign, you may want to have some flexibility on which one you choose after you see what heroes and classes are selected.

The Conversion Kit is far, far and away the best value of anything. I find the 3d tokens available as a download here on BGG to be even more thematic than the miniatures included in the game, unless you take the time, effort, and expense to paint them. And even then once you weigh the, "this looks different" factor against, "this plays different" instead of using the same monsters over and over, it's simply no contest. And as someone else said, you can generally use the miniatures included to proxy for most of the monster groups. If you use flesh molders for sorcerers or ettins for giants or elementals for golems or barghests for wendigos, frankly nobody will take 2 seconds to think that it doesn't work.


It's a nice suggestion, but I have neither the time nor the patience to PnP anything. I've always sucked hard at arts and crafts since I was a kid, so I would probably find it too frustrating, and monster/hero variety is not an issue. Not yet, at least. I just wouldn't feel right buying the kit either. Eventually, stock will run out and I would hate to be the guy that deprived someone who actually has a 1st edition copy the chance to upgrade for a reasonable price, you know?


If monster and hero variety isn't an issue yet, I would suggest to play the game for some sessions to be absolutly sure you want to spend more money on it. If money is no concern to you, you could of course buy a small expansion right away and maybe one lieutenant-pack, the problem with those small expansions imo is that they add so much less than the big expansions while costing not that much less. If you want a new campaign you will need a big expansion, if you want more monsters/heroes/classes/overlord cards you will need a big expansion or buy both small expansions.

Passing on the Conversion Kit seems really unlogical to me, especially if you don't plan on getting your miniatures painted. It adds the most to the game from start to finish and the 3d tokens do not require any kind of carfting skill. You just need to cut along lines and then fold the paperstrip at 4 edges.
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SparkingConduit wrote:
Areinu wrote:
This game has 2 years, and CK came early. If someone had 1st edition and haven't upgraded for 2 years then they probably won't.

Also, many 1st edition owners don't like 2nd edition anyway.

Okay, that's a fair point. I guess I just really can't get past the fact that I hate buying something where I'd have to proxy everything. It also feels like way too much at once. I don't need 25 heroes and 45 monsters when there's a decent amount of variety in the game already. Would it be nice? Sure. But it's something where if I can add it over time with the Hero and Monster packs, I'll do it, even if it means wasting more money.

You just download this and print it. It's the easiest thing in the world.

It's also not too much at once. You see how when people suggest something they say, "And it includes X heroes and Y monsters"? That's because playing with only the base set or even the base set plus one expansion gets really limiting and repetitive.

If you don't want to use it then don't, I guess. You seem to want to find reasons not to. But it really is the best value of anything out there for enriching the game and experience. It also is almost necessary to even the tables for the Overlord. The Conversion Kit helps the heroes as well since they have a larger variety of heroes and abilities to choose from. But the Overlord can choose monsters situationally so gets a larger leg up, relatively. And I'd argue a needed one.
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Dean L
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Mat628 wrote:

It's also not too much at once. You see how when people suggest something they say, "And it includes X heroes and Y monsters"? That's because playing with only the base set or even the base set plus one expansion gets really limiting and repetitive.


Depends how much you're going to be playing it really. Base set is absolutely fine for the first campaign (adding in a Lieutenant pack if you really want that mechanic).

Then grabbing a small box and Labyrinth and playing the Labyrinth campaign adds enough new monsters and classes to add new interesting decisions to that campaign.

Pick up another small box and Nerekhall and it's another 6 monster groups and 6 heroes.

Basically, I'd buying stuff in release order adds just enough new stuff to keep things fresh without getting overwhelmed when going through each campaign once.

Now if you're playing far more than that, the conversion kit (and hero and monster packs, and buying all the lieutenants) is worthwhile. But I wouldn't pick up the CK until either: a) after buying the other expansions and playing all three campaigns once or b) if you're short on cash and will be playing the base campaign multiple times, but can't afford a big box expansion.
 
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Funagain has Descent CK for $10:
http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1179554/funagain-new-site-sa...

If you're interested in coop, see the Retailer Kits entries. FFG will be releasing coop campaigns, though haven't made a formal announcement yet.
 
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