Jayson Myers
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Please check out my other reviews at:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/145695/item/2728438#it...



Conclusion:

This is a game that made me doubt myself. Everyone said it was so fantastic and the best thing ever. It is like a RPG in card format. I have never played a RPG, so I thought this might be a hybrid way of finding out what it is.

Hmmmmm.....are RPG's like this? Are they really about doing random things and having random things happening and hoping I have the "items" to defeat it. How can I prepare when I don't know what I'm about to face? Maybe if I played it a few times and knew all the cards. Sounds boring when all I do is flip over a card and hope I can beat it.

Then I was told the game is actually in between games. I have to build the decks. So I did. I can only keep X of these cards and Y of these cards. Yet, so many of the cards are the same and very specific to certain circumstances that may or may not happen. And then I am informed that the items will get better I just have to play the game more.

(record scratch) What? The game is about turning over a random card and I was bored and you sort of admit it wasn't that great, but the deck construction is where the fun is, but I have to play the boring part a lot more to get better items to construct my deck with? Why not play a game that is not boring and not construct my deck.

Listen, I don't say the above to be a prick or to be a jerk. Yes, I am not a RPG gamer, but this is the sort of game I would really enjoy. I would love a game that you build a character up and I get to come back and keep the story going. I was told this is the same game as Descent but with cards. Yet, with the minis (painted) moving around the board and moving left/right some how makes a world of difference to me.

I realize when people read this they will tell me how I played it wrong or how I wasn't the right guy or any other reason why it is my fault. I admit it is likely my fault. The game was just so dry and boring. I will admit I am at fault for this.

On that note, I have to admit I really wanted to like this game. I played this game more than any other game I've ever played that bored me so bad. The art is great, the components are great (this box is amazing!), the theme is there, but the game is so lacking. Sigh.

Purge.



Components:

The components are pretty fantastic. The box is amazing for the storage of this game. Possibly the best box/insert I've ever seen. The cards are very nice and durable. The art is going to appeal to people who like the theme. Everything works from a component perspective. There are plenty of characters to give you some variety. I wish the items had more uses; they all sort of seemed to be doing the same thing (I'm looking at you blessing of the gods).



Rule Book:

The rule book is very long. It is colorful and has a lot of pictures, examples, and explanations. You will need some time to get through the rule book. I would even recommend playing a game solo although the game is really easy to learn and to play. The book is just really long. There are some small rules that you need a grasp on (ex: closing a location). There isn't anything complicated here.



Flow of the Game:

I am not going to explain the rules of the game, but rather just the flow of the game.

There will be a number of locations set up (with a deck of cards under them). The location card will inform you the number of monster, treasures, items, etc that are in that deck. This will dictate who goes where.

Each session you play will likely be a scenario. The will be a few "levels" that you play through and possibly a main boss (I'm not explaining this well).

You are going to have a character that limits how man of certain cards you can have. Some characters will be better at spells, some fighting, etc.

Let me preface the game by saying the more you build up your character and the more you know about your deck and the available combos you have, the better you will do.

On a gaming turn you do the following:

1. Advance the blessing deck. This is a timer for the game. The negative is because there is a timer you won't have the time do what you want. This will also limit your choices as you have to "game" the system a little bit at times. You won't move from location to location because you do not have "time".

2. Give a card to another player in the same location (optional)

3. Move to a location (optional)

4. Explore. Turn over the top card and hope you beat it (optional). You sort of have to do this to keep progressing.

5. Attempt to close a location. This usually means running the deck out of cards or beating the "boss" at that location. How to do this will and can change depending on the location/"boss".

6. Reset your hand. Discard if you choose. This is likely not good because your hand is your health also.

7. End turn.

The main mechanic is skill checks. When you flip a card, you will attempt to beat it (yes even if it is an item). You determine how hard it is (a number on the card) and you get to use your characters powers and/or cards to try and beat that number. This will give you a number of dice that you will roll. There usually isn't a way to mitigate your dice rolls.

Despite what anyone tells you, the game is really about turning over a card and rolling the dice. There are not a lot of decisions to be made. If you play this a lot and study the game, you will increase your character and you will get better. This is part of the game. But when you are trying to win a skill check (which you will do over and over and over), you really do not have many choices. You can only use the cards in front of you. If you can get some cool combos you will be happy, but hope you draw those cards at the same time.



Should I buy this game?:

Yes, if this game sounds good to you. If you don't mind playing through a game quite a few times to build up your character. I am sure once you get there, the game will be better. Yet, I keep telling myself I am still playing a boring game. I am still just drawing a card and hoping for the best.

Many love this game. I am likely the idiot who just doesn't get it. That's okay. I am going to have to be alright with that. I think I can live with that.

Purge.
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Richard Dewsbery
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Quote:
Sounds boring when all I do is flip over a card and hope I can beat it.


Which card did you choose to flip? There are between three and eight piles to choose from. Why choose the one that you did (or was that done - bizarrely - at random)?

When you rolled to acquire or defeat that random card, did you play extra cards to help? Did you ask other characters to help? Were there reasons why you each would - or wouldn't - boost a particular roll?

After dealing with that card, did you draw another one or finish your go there? Why make that particular choice? You know what sort of cards are left in that deck - are you expecting "more of the same" or "something different"? Can you handle it when you flip it? Can anyone else help the second time around?

What about the villain and his henchmen? A few rounds in, do you have a better idea where they are? What's your plan if the very next card flipped is the villain?

Lots of decisions in this game. Yes, throw mostly 1's and you lost, throw mostly 10's and you won't, and most of the time you don't know what the next card is. But you can - must - play the odds, and make sound decisions. Ultimately they're the most important part of any game - the decisions.
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Sean
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Good write-up Jason. This echoes pretty much what I think of the game too.
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Byron Campbell
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william4192 wrote:
Many love this game. I am likely the idiot who just doesn't get it.


It sounds like you and Richard above both get it. There are definitely decisions to make here, but it won't be enough for everybody, and this game definitely isn't going to satisfying people looking for hard euro level of strategic depth (seeing that you rated Agricola a 10).
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Jose Negron
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This game does scratch an RPG itch, but on a very basic level. That being said, this is my favorite game in my collection. It is basically flipping a random card and hoping for the best, but because there are so many other essential choices in regards to where to flip, how many cards to play from your hand and lean the odds in your favor which in turn makes you lose health (your deck is your health), which character to make the flip, whether you want help from a friend who in essence will lose health to do it, and the different types of cards in the game, makes it a very tactical game.
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Bill Hartman
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Felt the same as the OP. Tried a few times, but everyone found it kind of boring. Same thing as well with the "It gets better later on, when you get these cool items". Heard that a few times, didn't feel enough was there to warrant so many plays of doing exactly the same thing. Sold it in my auction.
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David Ainsworth
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I like this game a lot. Not quite finished the adventure path yet (halfway through Sins of the Saviors) but found it really picked up around AP4 with much more interesting cards and mechanics. I'll be buying Skull and Shackles for sure, and am excited for where they go with it.

Was RotR a slow start? Maybe, but if you're not into the basic premise (random encounters, dice, super-slow deck building and long term character development) I don't think you'll magically start enjoying it later on.
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John Davis
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The game is more fun if you are prepared to put a bit of role-playing and story-telling into it.

Quote:
There are not a lot of decisions to be made.


Wow. I completely disagree. OK, perhaps it's a bit like this in the beginning with some characters, but I make dozens of tough decisions in a typical game, especially when playing with several characters. That's what makes me keep playing the game.
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Chris
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william4192 wrote:
It is like a RPG in card format. I have never played a RPG, so I thought this might be a hybrid way of finding out what it is. Hmmmmm.....are RPG's like this?

No, they aren't. PACG is not an RPG - not even close. RPG's are about creating a shared story with some game mechanics thrown in to determine success/failure of conflicts. PACG has minimal story. There is one, but it is almost incoherent unless you have played the RPG adventure the game is based on.

PACG is a board game with character progression. If you like games where decisions you make in one play session will impact future play sessions, this is one of the few games that has it. That said, it is still a fantasy-themed, roll a bunch of dice and hope to roll high, kind of game. Character progression is only a minor part of the game.

Quote:
Are they really about doing random things and having random things happening and hoping I have the "items" to defeat it. How can I prepare when I don't know what I'm about to face? Maybe if I played it a few times and knew all the cards. Sounds boring when all I do is flip over a card and hope I can beat it.

You aren't alone. That is the point of the game. You are part of group trying to win together. The fun of the game is in working together as a team to achieve victory. Richard has already given examples of how that plays out in the game.

This is a not a euro. You are not building up your economic engine to snowball your way to victory. You are part of team and your job is figuring out how to optimize your moves so that the team wins. Uncovering cards ahead of time so that they aren't random is a part of that - as is designing your deck so that it is flexible enough to handle as many situations as possible so that when you do turn over a card blind you have a shot at dealing with it. You can't cover all situations, there will always be cards that you cannot beat without help. Deciding as a group whether or not it is worth the resources to help you out is part of the appeal of the game.

PACG is a "shared experience" co-op game like Arkham Horror, Eldritch Horror, and the Dungeons and Dragons Adventure System Board Games. The mechanisms of PACG are indeed repetitive, random, and fairly simple. The appeal of playing it is in coming together as a team to overcome obstacles, and later, to optimize each team member's role to become even better at overcoming more, and more difficult, obstacles. If you do not like co-op games, or only like "puzzle based" co-op games (Ghost Stories, Pandemic), you won't like PACG. It definitely is not a game for "everybody".
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Michael F
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cbrua wrote:

PACG is a "shared experience" co-op game like Arkham Horror, Eldritch Horror, and the Dungeons and Dragons Adventure System Board Games. The mechanisms of PACG are indeed repetitive, random, and fairly simple. The appeal of playing it is in coming together as a team to overcome obstacles, and later, to optimize each team member's role to become even better at overcoming more, and more difficult, obstacles. If you do not like co-op games, or only like "puzzle based" co-op games (Ghost Stories, Pandemic), you won't like PACG. It definitely is not a game for "everybody".


So what you're saying is, you're playing a role in a shared experience? Sounds like a RPG to me...

By the way, Jayson, great review as always. I, too, have had games that I didn't care for at all while others have lauded over them (Pandemic, Troyes, and Agricola, to name a few).
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Chris
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newkillerstar27 wrote:
So what you're saying is, you're playing a role in a shared experience? Sounds like a RPG to me...

Yes, if you have a broad definition of RPG. Playing a pawn in a live-action chess match would also be a RPG by that definition.
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Howard Burdett
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This review is accurate... but only in certain, specific circumstances.

If you are playing a small party (1-2 characters), and/or playing weapon-oriented characters, and in the early scenarios, then I would say this review is true and fair.

However, if you are playing more characters, and particularly in later scenarios, this review is way off.

This is fundamentally a game of risk management - how much of your resources are you willing to throw at a problem? How much are you willing to accept the loss if the roll fails?

In a 1-2 character game, the clock is very forgiving, and there isn't much in the way of shared resources (primarily blessings), so tough decisions rarely have to be considered - you are probably either going to make the roll, or not.

In larger parties, the game is wall-to-wall tough decisions. When you're facing twice as many cards as there are rounds of play, you have to make all sorts of difficult tradeoffs - you need to beat almost every enemy first time, but the resources you need to do that are also needed for extra explorations or the clock will run out. Temporary closing when you meet the villain helps mitigate the tight schedule - but, in later scenarios, closing locations often involves further risks or sacrifices. There are many other circumstances which push tough decisions, e.g. discarding cards to use character powers, scrying the deck, etc. Unlike many, this game actually becomes harder with more characters - but also more interesting and strategic.

I agree that it's nonethless a game with a fairly high luck factor, and not for everyone. If you don't like resource- and risk-management games, where you can spend and still face failure, you won't like this. That's fine. But to suggest there are no meaningful decisions is nowhere close to the mark. I would suggest, even as a solo player, to run at least three characters and get past the early scenarios before forming a judgement.
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cbrua wrote:
newkillerstar27 wrote:
So what you're saying is, you're playing a role in a shared experience? Sounds like a RPG to me...

Yes, if you have a broad definition of RPG. Playing a pawn in a live-action chess match would also be a RPG by that definition.


Ah, good point. But I think the one thing I failed to mention is that you do have choices in this game, as you do in RPGs as well. So to say that this isn't trying to model itself as a board game/RPG hybrid seems to be inaccurate. That's all I'm saying.
 
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RDewsbery wrote:

Which card did you choose to flip? There are between three and eight piles to choose from. Why choose the one that you did (or was that done - bizarrely - at random)?


I respectfully disagree with the implication that there are many meaningful decisions to make in this game.

Which location(s) you choose to explore largely has to do with the expected ease of acquiring nice items early. It doesn't really give you any decisions to agonize over, since all locations are constructed from the same sets of cards. All of the questions you've listed are ones someone can answer in a fraction of a second once they've looked at the location descriptions.

RDewsbery wrote:

When you rolled to acquire or defeat that random card, did you play extra cards to help? Did you ask other characters to help? Were there reasons why you each would - or wouldn't - boost a particular roll?

After dealing with that card, did you draw another one or finish your go there? Why make that particular choice? You know what sort of cards are left in that deck - are you expecting "more of the same" or "something different"? Can you handle it when you flip it? Can anyone else help the second time around?


These are again decisions you can make very quickly and have to do with whether you are on track? You know you have 30 turns to find and defeat the villain and, let's say, 50 cards in your location decks. This means that you only rarely, when it's safe, want to explore multiple times since you don't need to explore all cards to find and defeat the villain. Maybe if the game gave you less time, these decisions would be more important, but then, since the outcome of any situation is largely determined by chance, this wouldn't make the game more rewarding, it would just decrease the win ratios for players.

RDewsbery wrote:

What about the villain and his henchmen? A few rounds in, do you have a better idea where they are? What's your plan if the very next card flipped is the villain?


This is something you have little control over. Sure, you can have an idea where the villain is (where the henchmen are is a bit of a moot point; they're everywhere where the villain isn't). Or not. There's not that much you can do about that.

RDewsbery wrote:

Lots of decisions in this game. Yes, throw mostly 1's and you lost, throw mostly 10's and you won't, and most of the time you don't know what the next card is. But you can - must - play the odds, and make sound decisions. Ultimately they're the most important part of any game - the decisions.


Not saying there aren't decision to be made in this game. Just that once you've had some experience with the game, they're pretty quick and reactive ones. Which is fine if that's what you're looking for, but the review discussed this aspect of the game fairly, IMO.
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Dylan Nichols
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I feel, this is a game that requires multiple sessions in the same evening. Not one you setup, play one scenario and than box it up and play something else. It's a continuation of the game previous and a lead up to the game after. If you treat it as a one shot for the night game, it might as well be Munchkin.

I had hoped my gaming group would get more into this. But the time and consistency to play each week is hard. So far, I'm enjoying running 3 characters through the system on solo. I've felt like I made some very tough decisions and almost lost the party a few times. I will say the first set is a one trick pony, where the skill checks just get bigger. The designer has admitted that they tried to experiment with different scenario objectives, but some fell flat. And the upcoming Skulls and Shackles looks like they've put some neat spins on things.

The mechanics of the game can be boiled down to encounter/skill check. But I don't see this an any different than 1/4 of the FFG games on the market. And after I box this up, there is some, small, campaign elements that are waiting for me next time. Unlike in Arkham/Eldritch Horror and Runebound where I have to write a new story from the start everytime.
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Definitely not an unfair assessment. We all value our experiences differently and PACG and, I believe RPG gaming as well, is about how well you can immerse yourself in the theme of the game.

The cards, they are random, and sometimes, by the nature of the game, you will see something that doesn't make thematic sense (a falling bell in the woods, for example). But by and large you can make sense of most of the things that occur, and can write off the more random, non-sensical events. If you get into that mindset, where you are exploring this world looking for a villain that is doing xyz, it makes more sense and starts to look a little less random.

There have been some variants posted that remove some of the events that don't make sense and other attempts to further enhance the theme and give you an idea of who the villains and henchmen are, as well as some of the named allies, and that gives you more information as to what each particular scenario represents. I do wish that the game itself came with more of that background as it would only enhance the experience.

However, like any game, when it strip it down to its base, it doesn't seem as grandiose as it may be. And all games aren't for all people. I just wanted to offer what I see in PACG.
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newkillerstar27 wrote:
cbrua wrote:
newkillerstar27 wrote:
So what you're saying is, you're playing a role in a shared experience? Sounds like a RPG to me...

Yes, if you have a broad definition of RPG. Playing a pawn in a live-action chess match would also be a RPG by that definition.


Ah, good point. But I think the one thing I failed to mention is that you do have choices in this game, as you do in RPGs as well. So to say that this isn't trying to model itself as a board game/RPG hybrid seems to be inaccurate. That's all I'm saying.


I'll disagree. The keyword here is ROLE playing. Creating a character and ROLE PLAYING (acting) as that character. There is no ROLE playing in PACG. It is a card game adventure. You *could* role play your character, but it does nothing to the gameplay/story. Whereas in a pen-n-paper RPG, your character could get experience points to help them advance mearly for good ROLE playing skills.

Jorune
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Richard
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RDewsbery wrote:
Quote:
Sounds boring when all I do is flip over a card and hope I can beat it.


Which card did you choose to flip? There are between three and eight piles to choose from. Why choose the one that you did (or was that done - bizarrely - at random)?

I can answer for me:

I would pick one of the three or four piles of face-down cards. I'd try to decide based on if it had more monsters or something I wanted. Usually this was a 1/10 or 2/10 differential so didn't matter much in the end.


Quote:
After dealing with that card, did you draw another one or finish your go there? Why make that particular choice? You know what sort of cards are left in that deck - are you expecting "more of the same" or "something different"? Can you handle it when you flip it? Can anyone else help the second time around?


I never saw any difference in going there versus going somewhere else. If I was lucky, I made my hand a bit stronger. If I was unlucky, I just lost a hand of cards and was already a couple moves away from dying, especially if that heal spell was in the bottom of my deck.

Quote:
What about the villain and his henchmen? A few rounds in, do you have a better idea where they are? What's your plan if the very next card flipped is the villain?


Nope. A few rounds in, I am three cards down through one stack. That didn't help me at all.

Quote:
Lots of decisions in this game. Yes, throw mostly 1's and you lost, throw mostly 10's and you won't, and most of the time you don't know what the next card is. But you can - must - play the odds, and make sound decisions. Ultimately they're the most important part of any game - the decisions.


I never saw enough information to make meaningful decisions. There are some, to be sure. I played the game for a while but my biggest issue is all the scenarios are too similar and the locations, for the most part, don't make my decisions more interesting. Finally, all it takes is a few bad rolls and I have lost with no way of recovering my health and during combat, using cards to block is the same as taking damage so I felt it created an all-or-nothing play style that wasn't as interesting as it could be.

I still have some fun with this game and refer to it as "Diablo, in card game format."
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william4192 wrote:
Everyone said it was so fantastic and the best thing ever. It is like a RPG in card format.

Clearly you were misinformed. Before I bought the game, I had read or been told repeatedly that the gameplay is merely "good", and that the real charm of the game is in improving your character over multiple sessions. And that it is NOT like an RPG in card format. Going in with those expectations would certainly make the game a disappointment.

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I respectfully disagree with the implication that there are many meaningful decisions to make in this game.

Perhaps you are a genius. Ten plays in, I was still learning new tricks and ways to make better decisions. I have heard other people say that there are no interesting/meaningful decisions in Pandemic, which leads me to believe that people use that term very differently than I do.

Either I'm not that bright and think the decisions are harder than they really are, or other folks are only looking at the surface of the decision and aren't actually understanding the full depth of the decisions, or their threshold for "interesting" and/or "meaningful" is far, far higher than mine. Or some combination of those.

I think RDewsbery's list of decision points was excellent. You dismissed each:

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Which location(s) you choose to explore largely has to do with the expected ease of acquiring nice items early.

Not really. That is one factor, but the ease of that character closing that location is also significant. If you have some theives tools, you might be less afraid of barriers. Maybe the special rule for that location makes it much more or less appealing for one (or all) characters. And later in the game, do you want to keep exploring a location to permanently close it, or is it good enough to just be there to temporarily close it?

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This means that you only rarely, when it's safe, want to explore multiple times since you don't need to explore all cards to find and defeat the villain.

True in a 2p game, where you have plenty of time. In a 6-player game, you have 30 turns and a total of 80 cards. Even if you find the villain/henchmen halfway through each location, you will lose if you only explore once per turn. With a lot of heroes, time is precious, but damage is less important.

With 2 heroes, time is plentiful, but damage becomes a real threat. Unless you have healing abilities, and then if you make the decision to keep Cure spells. But to heal you have to be in the same location, which can slow you down, and can mess with some abilities (like Merisiel's backstab).

Quote:
Sure, you can have an idea where the villain is (where the henchmen are is a bit of a moot point; they're everywhere where the villain isn't). Or not. There's not that much you can do about that.

There are items, spells, and allies that let you look ahead in the deck, providing valuable information. Some characters can evade, so you might discover the villain (or henchman), but shuffle it back in and let someone else deal with it. You might temporarily close locations to force the villain to run to one known location.

Quote:
Not saying there aren't decision to be made in this game. Just that once you've had some experience with the game, they're pretty quick and reactive ones.

I think that is closer to the truth, but that's not what the review itself said. I think there are probably a handful of meaningful decisions almost every single turn. Many of them only require a moment of thought, but probably on average there is a non-obvious decision every turn or two. Most won't be brain-burners, but some will require a couple minutes of thought and discussion.

I would say there are more total decisions to make in PACG than in Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game, for example (a game you rate a 10). And in both games, of all those decisions, there are probably a comparable number of interesting and meaningful decisions, and a comparable number of "difficult" decisions. If anything, I would give the nod to PACG. I'm not bashing Legendary. I really enjoy both PACG and Legendary, but I see the flaws in both.

And I find the "flip and roll" more frustrating in Arkham Horror (which you rate a 9) than in PACG. I feel like I have way more control over my destiny in PACG. I think AH gets away with the flip and roll for a lot of people because the flavor text is rich, but it didn't hold my attention for hours.

If PACG didn't have a campaign mode, or if I weren't able to sustain a campaign with the same players, week in and week out, then it wouldn't hold my interest. The affinity with my character is important, and discovering new items is a big part of the fun. The gameplay is light, but interesting.


Executive summary: The gameplay of PACG is good, not great. The campaign aspects are great. PACG is not an RPG, and doesn't really feel like an RPG. Notably, there is minimal story. However, PACG is far more interesting than just "flip a card and roll some dice". It has a lot of little decisions, and a few big ones, each game. As you play more, you will make better and better decisions, although you'll have to re-learn some as your character changes, and as the challenges increase.
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Ten plays in, I was still learning new tricks and ways to make better decisions.


I would hope so! 10 plays doesn't seem like a lot for a relatively short and light game like PACG.

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Not really. That is one factor, but the ease of that character closing that location is also significant. If you have some theives tools, you might be less afraid of barriers. Maybe the special rule for that location makes it much more or less appealing for one (or all) characters. And later in the game, do you want to keep exploring a location to permanently close it, or is it good enough to just be there to temporarily close it?


You are right, the closing condition is also important. But like with the location deck composition, once you've made the decisions 1) which character(s) is best suited for the location, and 2) whether it's better to tackle the location early or late, you've outlined your strategy in your head, and subsequent decisions are quick.

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True in a 2p game, where you have plenty of time. In a 6-player game, you have 30 turns and a total of 80 cards. Even if you find the villain/henchmen halfway through each location, you will lose if you only explore once per turn. With a lot of heroes, time is precious, but damage is less important.


I usually play with 3 or 4 characters solo, but that was an estimate anyway. The point is, you can calculate how many cards you have to explore on average to get through all cards (1.6 per turn for 50 cards, 2.6 per 80). In reality, the chances that you'll have to explore all cards are small, so this is a liberal estimate for your pace. But you have an idea of what pace you need to keep, and the decisions of whether to risk or not become, again, quick.


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Sure, you can have an idea where the villain is (where the henchmen are is a bit of a moot point; they're everywhere where the villain isn't). Or not. There's not that much you can do about that.


I remember using Harsk's ability to do that. It was one of the few things that made the game a little more decision-heavy and fun for me. However, I thought the possibilities for look-ahead (or other interesting card effects that give you more information or possibilities) were limited.

In any case, I think your overall assessment of the game matches mine, including that the decisions are mostly quick and not brain-burny, which I found unsatisfying.

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I would say there are more total decisions to make in PACG than in Legendary: A Marvel Deck Building Game, for example (a game you rate a 10)


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And I find the "flip and roll" more frustrating in Arkham Horror (which you rate a 9) ...


I haven't played either, so assuming this was in response to the OP. Related to it, and without having played EH, I find that often a map can add a lot to improved decision making. It makes the moving between locations a resource, and sometimes it forces you to plan ahead your route for big chunks of the game. I don't know if that's the case in EH, but PACG might have benefited from a map... As it is, going between locations costs you nothing, which doesn't help the feeling that the locations are samey.
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Personally, some of the fun of P:ACG is from making the story.

Why is the Cultist in the General Store? Buying supplies of course! Because I bump into the SAME cultist every adventure and he's trying to kill me. Once I stopped bumping into him, I kept bumping into Explosive Runes... clearly the Cultist learned this spell just to thwart me from afar!

Explaining the weird "Random" occurrences and trying to connect a series of random card flips into a coherent narrative is fun.

I know some people without an RPG-background have problems looking at the game this way, and I know some people with a hardcore RPG-background are upset with the loss of diplomatic and outside-the-box options, but I have a ton of fun with it.
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The good detective above describes a large part of my enjoyment in this game. I might also add that some knowledge of the Adventure Path it's based on helps to drive the narrative as well. Having run the first few adventures in the path more than once, I have plenty of fond memories that get jogged when things like Aldern Foxglove or the Shopkeeper's Daughter cards come up
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Praxus wrote:
The good detective above describes a large part of my enjoyment in this game. I might also add that some knowledge of the Adventure Path it's based on helps to drive the narrative as well. Having run the first few adventures in the path more than once, I have plenty of fond memories that get jogged when things like Aldern Foxglove or the Shopkeeper's Daughter cards come up


Hmm, I wondered what the back story for the Shopkeeper's Daughter might be...
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With the OP 100% on the experience. Very few meaningful decisions. The leveling-up aspect is by far the most interesting part, but I don't actually want to play the game to test out my decks. Quickly bought and sold.

As to the fun in connecting the random elements into a coherent story, you might as well buy a deck of cards with random pictures and/or words on them, flip one, and tell the story. That creates the same experience.
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Idaho11 wrote:
With the OP 100% on the experience. Very few meaningful decisions. The leveling-up aspect is by far the most interesting part, but I don't actually want to play the game to test out my decks. Quickly bought and sold.

As to the fun in connecting the random elements into a coherent story, you might as well buy a deck of cards with random pictures and/or words on them, flip one, and tell the story. That creates the same experience.


Well, we kind of did "buy a deck of cards with random pictures and/or words on them", except it's not really random. The cards reference characters and events found in the Pathfinder RPG, specifically the Rise of the Runelords AP. More than a few of us purchased and enjoy the game based on the desire to have a card game that told a story and allowed us some semblance of character building as the story progressed.

I'm not dismissing your opinion, I'm just wondering what you and the OP expected the game to deliver?
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