Giacomo Andrenelli
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Hello everybody
I'm working on a co-op variant for Runebound to be used with my regular gaming group, a variant which could speed the game up a bit and, at the same time, make available to the players some of the really nice variants I've found on these pages (along with some other ideas I was working on).
Ok, nothing new under the sun, I suppose, but maybe someone could be interested in taking a look
I'm afraid this post will take some time to write (and to read) but any feedback will be greatly appreciated. I will add the source of any change to the rules whenever needed (with the help of my not-so-reliable memory, so any correction is welcome), and I will roughly follow the rules order on the main rulebook. I beg your pardon in advance for any inappropriate or criminal use of english language, it's been some time since my last written essay, I'm afraid.

The base set, the class decks and some parts from the Midnight expansion (specifically all the components related to the Night Kings: the four NK tiles and the threat tile with the shadow counters). I'm writing this here and not in the Midnight forum because I think that even if having the base set and the class decks only, the components taken from the Midnight set can somehow be produced or replaced to the extent needed to follow these rules.

Everything as per the main rulebook with 4 main changes:

1) Market decks
From the market variant submitted by Martin Knight. The market cards will be split in 4 decks: weapons, armours, allies/familiars, magical items. During the game, every time the rules ask for a random market card, the acting player can choose which deck to draw from. Draw three cards (from three different decks, players' choice) for every town and put them in the corresponding market stack.

2) Halls of Knowledge
From the class deck variant submitted by Mike David ( Prepare three decks to represent the Halls of Knowledge: one containing all the Talent cards (the Training Hall), a second one with all the friendly Spell cards (the Arcane Library) and a last one with all the friendly Feat cards (the Warrior Club). Again from the class decks, take all the Challenge cards a prepare a deck to be used as the Night King's Patrols deck. Finally, take all the enemy Spell and Feat cards and make a single deck of them, the Powers deck. Location cards are not used at all.
NOTE: some of the cards, mainly from the class decks, become nearly useless with the following rules. I will try to write down a list for anyone interested, but I suppose that it's not difficult to sort them out by oneself

3) Challenge, Encounter and Event decks
Take the adventure cards and separate them by colors and in Challenges, Events and Encounters. Prepare the four standard adventure decks (to be put on the board, as usual) with the Challenge cards only. Shuffle the Event cards of every color and then prepare the Events deck with the green cards on top and then all the others, closing with the red ones at the bottom. Put the Events deck on the event area on the board and turn the first green card face up: that Event will be active from the beginning of the game. Finally, shuffle the Encounter cards of every color and put each resulting deck near the adventure deck of the same color.

4) Night Lord bonuses
From the Midnight solo rules by Frank La Terra ( Choose one of the Night Lords as the main villain of the game. Roll a number of movement dice equal to the number of players. Somewhat similarly to the NK influence roll in Midnight rules, put every dice that comes up with the terrain symbol of the type corresponding to the Mind symbol of the NK over the Mind symbol on the NK tile (err... not so clear I suppose gulp ). Roll any remaining dice again and repeat the operation with the Body symbol and then again with all remaining dice and the Spirit symbol.
Example: 4 player want to fight against Ardherin (Hill/Swamp/Road) in their current game. They roll four dice and they get 2 Hill symbols. They put those two dice on the Mind symbol on the NK tile and then roll again the two other dice. Only one Swamp comes up, so only one dice is put on the Body symbol. The remaining dice is rolled again but no Road symbols show up, so the NK don't get any bonus to his Spirit attribute.
The allocated dice are bonuses that will be used during Patrol fight and in the final battle against the Night King.
Choose the difficulty of the game and set the threat level, the threat difficulty and the starting doom counter pool using the corresponding tokens, as per standard Midnight rules.

A sixth step related to the Night King's manouvers is added at the end of the standard turn sequence. During each step, every player performs the actions that take place during that step (starting with the first player and continuing clockwise), then the turn proceeds to the next step.

Step 1: Refresh
No changes.

Step 2: Movement
As per the rules of the Midnight expansion, every Hero can spend his dice in taking different actions during his movement step (journey, rest, heal and barter).
Some changes are made to the standard rules:

1) Journey action
Every terrain type has a different movement cost and Hero skills can help movement.
- Roads/Town : two spaces with one dice spent
- Hill/Plains: one space with one dice spent
- Forest/Swamp/Mountain/River: one space with two dice spent
Three skills can make the passage through difficult terrain easier: a Hero having the Swim skill can move to one River space spending only one dice, the Climb skill gives the same bonus with Mountain spaces and the Sneak skill does the same with Forest spaces. No skill can help with Swamp spaces.

2) Fighting Patrols
If a Hero begins his turn with a NK Patrol on his hex, he must choose between fighting the Patrol or escaping. If he tries to escape, the Hero must make a standard escape test, adding the Mind bonus of the Night King (the number of movement dice or tokens located on the Mind Symbol on the NK tile) to the Mind value of the Patrol. If the Hero succeds, he can take his standard movement step. If the roll fails, a battle with the Patrol starts immediately and the Hero cannot use any Before Combat skills or powers, neither he can try to escape during the first round of combat. If the Hero chooses to fight the Patrol, a standard combat take place. Everytime a Hero fights against a Patrol, you have to add the Night King bonuses to that Patrol's corresponding attributes.
In either case, if the Hero fights against the Patrol, he will not be able to take a journey or barter action at the end of the battle (he'll be able to rest and/or heal only) and the Hero will skip his adventure step. If the Hero Kills the Patrol he will get a number of experience points equal to half that patrol's life points, but no other reward.

Step 3: Adventure
Every time a Hero ends his movement on a space with an adventure counter, he can choose to attempt the adventure or not, as per standard rules.
Here's the changes:

1) Challenges
If the player chooses to attempt the adventure, he will draw the top card from the corresponding adventure deck and have a fight with the Challenge shown on the card. Additionaly, the player will draw the top card from the Powers deck and, if the level of the Hero in equal or greater than the menace number on the card, the Power is active and will be used in the current battle by the Challenge against the Hero. If the Hero looses che battle, all the standard rules apply with one exception: the undefeated challenge track is not used for standard challenges but only for Patrols, so the Challenge card will be discarded under the corresponding adventure deck. If the Hero wins the battle, he will get the reward listed on the Challenge card, doubling any gold reward (whether or not the Challenge had an active Power during the battle). Powers card are discarded at the bottom of the Powers deck.

2) Travel Hazards If the Hero ends his movement on a non-town space without an adventure counter, the player must roll two movement dice to check for possible travel hazards:
- if the dice show two symbols corresponding to the terrain type the Hero is in, nothing happens.
- if the dice don't show any symbol corresponding to the terrain type the Hero is in, the player must draw a Challenge card from the adventure deck of the color of the active Event card and fight it as per standard combat rules (he must also draw a card from the Power deck, as described before).
- if the dice show only one relevant symbol, the player must draw the top card from the Encounter deck of the color of the active Event card and follow the instructions on that card. Discarded Encounters are still removed from play, so if there aren't any Encounter cards remaining of the desired color, a Challenge card of that color will be drawn instead and a fight will take place.

Step 4: Market

1) Market actions
On every market step, after adding a card from a market deck of his choice to the market stack of the town he's in, a Hero on a town space can take any of the following actions, in any order. Every action can be taken once.
- Buy items from the market stack of the town and/or sell items from his own equipment (to be put on that town's stack).
- Draw 3 cards from one of the market decks and buy any of them (still from the market deck variant).
- Visit one of the Halls of Knowledge (still from magius74 variant, with some adjustments)
If the Training Hall is chosen, the player can take the corresponding deck and choose one single Talent whose prerequisites he can satisfy. He must start with a first level Talent and every time he enters the Training Hall he can change his current Talent with another one of one level higher. The cost of every Talent is 1 experience point.
If the Hero visits the Arcane Library or the Warriors Club, the player can draw 5 cards from the chosen deck and keep any cards he wants, with some specifications: he must be of an experience level equal or greater than the menace level written on the card, he must meet the proficiency requirements of the card and he must pay 1 experience point for every card he takes. The player will put the choosen cards on the table, near his Hero's card. In any given moment of the game, a Hero can have 4 active powers counting both Spells and Feats. Spells and Feats are used like activate-to-use items and are subject to the same limitations (max one per step or combat round). If a Hero changes his Talent to another one which doesn't grant him the proficency requirements of one or more of his current powers, the powers still remain in play.
- Buy healing, as per standard rules.

2) Item limits
We usually let every Hero use one armour item of every type (one shield, one suit, and so on).

Step 5: Experience

1) Level cost and experience counters
The experience point cost of every level is 2. Every time a Hero gains a new level he can get an experience counter as per standard rules and with the same limitations (if you have the first edition counters you can also give the option to get a +1 counter in two different attributes instead of a single +2 counter).

2) Levelling up and the Night Lords Bonuses
Every time a Hero raise his level, there's a chance that the Night King influence will improve. For every level gained by the Heroes during the experience step, roll a movement dice and sort out possible iprovements to the NK bonuses, as per the rules described in the setup paragraph about the NK.

Step 6: The Night King's turn
The following ideas got started by the same post about solo rules for Midnight by MrSkeletor, mentioned in the setup paragraphs.

1) Threat Step
A doom counter is added to the threat pool and a threat test is made, rolling 2d10 and adding the number of counters in the threat pool. If the total is less than the game's difficulty, nothing happens and the NK moves to the next step. If the total is equal or greater than the game's difficulty:
- move up the threat level counter one space
- all doom counters in the threat pool are removed
- all depleted adventure jewels are replenished (not only the ones with starburts)
- the current event is discarded and the following one is turned face up

2) Patrols movement
Every Patrol on the board can move three spaces towards the nearest Hero (if there is more than one Hero at the same distance from the Patrol, the one with the highest level will be pursued by the enemy). Revelead Patrols (those located on the undefeated challenge track) will pursue Heroes of a level equal or greater than their menace value only. Unrevealed Patrols (those which enter play during the next step) will pursue any Hero until revelead (unrevealed Patrols get revealed on their first battle).

3) Shadow Power improvement
If, during the Threat Step, the color of the current Event changed, the adventure token used to denote the current level of NK's Shadow power must be changed to one matching the current Event's color. If there are less active Patrols than the number of Heroes in play, the NK will spawn a new Patrol, putting an undefeated challenge counter on a randomly chosen town (1-8 on a d10, on 9-0 the choice is up to the players) to represent an unrevealed Patrol.

If the Heroes kill Margath before the threat level of the NK reaches 10, the end game is triggered and the Heroes must battle, together, against the NK himself and his Honour Guard. If the threat level reaches 10 before Margath is killed, the NK will hunt down the Heroes fighting personally against them, one by one, starting with the one with the lowest level.

1) The Honour Guard
The Heroes get a free Refresh step. A number of cards equal to the number of Heroes plus 2 are drawn from the Patrol deck. The two Patrols with the lowest menace number are discarded, the remaining cards representing the Honour Guard of the Night King. The Heroes will have to fight each Patrol in a different battle, one after the other in the order they prefer, using the standard rules (NK's bonuses, no rewards on killing the Patrol) with the exception that a knocked-out Hero will remain out of the game till its end. The Heroes can fight together: they can still attack only once during a combat round, but in every combat phase (ranged, melee, magic) a different Hero or one of his Allies can attack. A Patrol, whenever possible, will always attack the Hero in worst conditions (considering the number of wounds first and then the number of fatigue counters, ties are resolved by players' choice). If the Heroes manage in killing the last Honour Guard, they can battle against the NK.

2) The Night King
The Heroes get a free Refresh step. The final stats for the NK are calculated as follows:
- the three combat values are given by the difficulty chosen for the game plus the bonuses on the NK tile
- the damage inflicted by the NK on each phase is given by the his shadow power's level
- his life points are equal to the current threat level of the NK
As a further variation, the players can also draw a number of Power cards equal to the number of Heroes still in play and apply them to the battle against the NK, not considering the menace level on the cards.
If the Heroes manage in killing the NK, they win the game.

That's it. I hope I managed in making all this mess sufficiently clear and I hope I've not missed any reference to the house rules I've found on these pages.
Again, any feedback or corrections are welcome
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Graham Smallwood
United States
Santa Ana
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Delve : the Dice Game Buy for iOS!
This is awesome. It's a totally new game. I was never interested in getting the Midnight game until now.
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Troy Mullineaux
United States
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I can see that I'm going to have to not be so cheap and get the class decks now. Interesting ideas here, especially for the Midnight expansion. I love the community putting out more stuff on this game system and applaud you for doing this! Post away more as you get them.
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Mr X
United States
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Wow...lots of neat ideas. I'll definitely be implementing some of these! Thanks!
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