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Subject: What's the point of lairs? rss

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Chris J Davis
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It didn't immediately jump out at me from the rulebook. The only thing I could think of is that they are basically big mega-traps to ambush the hunters with.

Can they potentially benefit the hunters in any way?
 
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bleached_lizard wrote:
It didn't immediately jump out at me from the rulebook. The only thing I could think of is that they are basically big mega-traps to ambush the hunters with.

Can they potentially benefit the hunters in any way?


Essentially they are mega traps, just as were the catacombs of the second edition.

I don't see any particular benefit to the hunters except that they can gain information if Dracula needs to move back to a lair before it can be cleared. This would be particularly true if the lair was revealed.

This is just from perusing the rules and reference this morning, there may be other things.
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brian
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Just mega-traps that I can see. You can't get more than one encounter at a location except by the use of other cards. But moving it to a lair and then back on the location track easily puts 3 encounters on it.
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Zsolt Nagy
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In the 2nd edition the Catacombs were also good to cycle Dracula's encounters faster. Dracula always drew back to five encounters at the end of his round and if he moved to a city and put an other in the Catacombs in the same round than he placed an encounter on both, so he drew two. I am not sure how it works exactly in the 3rd edition though.
 
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brian
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Nagypapi wrote:
In the 2nd edition the Catacombs were also good to cycle Dracula's encounters faster. Dracula always drew back to five encounters at the end of his round and if he moved to a city and put an other in the Catacombs in the same round than he placed an encounter on both, so he drew two. I am not sure how it works exactly in the 3rd edition though.

You can place one encounter when you put a location on the trail. Another one when the location goes to the Lair slot. And a third when it goes back on the trail.

At least one of the matured encounter effects allows you to place an encounter on a location already in the trail.

In third edition, you also draw back to 5 encounters in hand when you are below that amount.
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Billy Babel
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bleached_lizard wrote:
It didn't immediately jump out at me from the rulebook. The only thing I could think of is that they are basically big mega-traps to ambush the hunters with.

Can they potentially benefit the hunters in any way?


They seem like they would be more of a vampire fortress than mega trap. IE after something has gone off the board, you can give an aristocratic vampire a better chance of surviving by putting him in a lair.
 
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Chris J Davis
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BillyBabel wrote:
bleached_lizard wrote:
It didn't immediately jump out at me from the rulebook. The only thing I could think of is that they are basically big mega-traps to ambush the hunters with.

Can they potentially benefit the hunters in any way?


They seem like they would be more of a vampire fortress than mega trap. IE after something has gone off the board, you can give an aristocratic vampire a better chance of surviving by putting him in a lair.


Doesn't the Aristocratic Vampire just mature and get discarded if it reaches the end of the trail?
 
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Billy Babel
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If I'm reading it right it would work like this. I don't know what all the cards are, but say rats reaches the end and goes off, you think "the matured effect on that isn't very good" so you make it a lair, you get to put an encounter card on top, so when you create the lair you put aristocratic vampire, you move to that location and throw down the wolves card on top of aristocratic vampire and rats. Since dracula chooses what encounters happen first, if a hunter stumbles into the lair, before he can fight your vampire, he will have to fight rats and wolves first, then your vampire.
 
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brian
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BillyBabel wrote:
If I'm reading it right it would work like this. I don't know what all the cards are, but say rats reaches the end and goes off, you think "the matured effect on that isn't very good" so you make it a lair, you get to put an encounter card on top, so when you create the lair you put aristocratic vampire, you move to that location and throw down the wolves card on top of aristocratic vampire and rats. Since dracula chooses what encounters happen first, if a hunter stumbles into the lair, before he can fight your vampire, he will have to fight rats and wolves first, then your vampire.

Yeah, you could make this work. Another benefit with this is by also putting a Rumor token on it for the +3 influence.

It should be noted though that Dracula only chooses the order when he ambushes. If the location is searched, it is the hunter's choice.
 
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Billy Babel
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Yeah but you get the option to ambush when they move into the space so you're more than likely gonna get to pick the order

if I'm reading the rules right, one of the things that surprised me is that if someone moves into a place that is part of your trail, you automatically tell them, and only when they take an investigate action do they find out what's there.
 
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Chris J Davis
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I'm also a bit confused about rumour tokens. Again, they seem to explicitly benefit Dracula. Why wouldn't you always put one down on a vampire encounter, if you have one?

I think part of the thing that is confusing me is that the "Advanced Rules" seem to only benefit Dracula, which means that the "Basic Rules" must be very unbalanced in favour of the hunters!
 
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H-B-G
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bleached_lizard wrote:
I'm also a bit confused about rumour tokens. Again, they seem to explicitly benefit Dracula. Why wouldn't you always put one down on a vampire encounter, if you have one?


You could do that, but if you do you're calling attention to that lair making it a specific hunter target. Of course you might use it as a bluff luring them to some other unpleasant surprise.

Quote:
I think part of the thing that is confusing me is that the "Advanced Rules" seem to only benefit Dracula, which means that the "Basic Rules" must be very unbalanced in favour of the hunters!


That might be true. I don't know as, in my first game last night, I just ignored the basic and went straight to the Advanced rules. In the rules it does say that they are meant to add depth to Dracula's play options.

Also 2 of the 3 things (Power Cards and Lairs) were actually part of the basic game in the previous edition (although Lairs were called Catacombs). Rumors are new to 3rd edition.
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Chris J Davis
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I'm still having difficulty seeing how Rumours "draw attention" to a card. The hunters want to find the vampire encounters regardless, and adding a Rumour token to a card does not give the hunters any additional information about where it might be - it simply increases its value by 3.

Of all the additional "Advanced Rules", the Rumour one is the one I'm most dubious of. It also doesn't encourage me that it didn't exist in 2nd Edition.
 
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bleached_lizard wrote:
I'm still having difficulty seeing how Rumours "draw attention" to a card. The hunters want to find the vampire encounters regardless, and adding a Rumour token to a card does not give the hunters any additional information about where it might be - it simply increases its value by 3.

Of all the additional "Advanced Rules", the Rumour one is the one I'm most dubious of. It also doesn't encourage me that it didn't exist in 2nd Edition.


You're right that the token doesn't give info about where it is, but the location will not always be unknown. Say a hunter moves to a location and it is in the trail. The location card is revealed at that point, but not any encounters (unless Dracula chooses to Ambush). For their next action the hunter needs to decide whether to spend an action to search or to do something else. The presence of a rumour token is going to encourage the hunter towards searching.

In the ideal world hunters would always look to find out what all the encounters are but in practice actions are limited and if you search, you might find something you'd rather you hadn't. Again things are somewhat different to previous editions where you if you moved into a location on the trail everything was automatically revealed and encounters resolved.

All of this is of course me rambling on the basis of very limited experience (reading the rules and 1 play), but the game does seemed to have been rebalanced compared to the second edition which was hunter biased.
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Chris J Davis
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Played our first game today, with the advanced rules *except* for the Rumour tokens.

It seemed very difficult for the hunters. I certainly wouldn't include Rumour tokens in first games, and even in advanced games I might house rule it that placing the Rumour token reveals the location of the hideout. I think this is reasonable, considering you're essentially doubling the VP value of the vampire.
 
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Randal Divinski
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bleached_lizard wrote:
Played our first game today, with the advanced rules *except* for the Rumour tokens.

It seemed very difficult for the hunters. I certainly wouldn't include Rumour tokens in first games, and even in advanced games I might house rule it that placing the Rumour token reveals the location of the hideout. I think this is reasonable, considering you're essentially doubling the VP value of the vampire.


Interesting. Remember that 3rd Edition introduces the concept of regions, so perhaps your house rule could be that the rumor reveals the REGION but not the location.

Another option might be that -- because of the additional information hunters can gleam from the rumors generated -- they don't need an additional search action to find the hideout once they are in the right location.

Or maybe the imbalance was just the vagaries of a particular play group.
 
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Chris J Davis
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randiv wrote:
bleached_lizard wrote:
Played our first game today, with the advanced rules *except* for the Rumour tokens.

It seemed very difficult for the hunters. I certainly wouldn't include Rumour tokens in first games, and even in advanced games I might house rule it that placing the Rumour token reveals the location of the hideout. I think this is reasonable, considering you're essentially doubling the VP value of the vampire.


Interesting. Remember that 3rd Edition introduces the concept of regions, so perhaps your house rule could be that the rumor reveals the REGION but not the location.

Another option might be that -- because of the additional information hunters can gleam from the rumors generated -- they don't need an additional search action to find the hideout once they are in the right location.

Or maybe the imbalance was just the vagaries of a particular play group.


Or it may just be first play skewing against the hunters.
 
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Billy Babel
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it seems like it would make more sense to have a token to place on the gameboard to lure hunter to that location, although how you'd also keep track of where the rumor token is on the track idk. 2 tokens for each rumor one for the board and one for the track.
 
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Jacob Mercer
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bleached_lizard wrote:
I'm still having difficulty seeing how Rumours "draw attention" to a card. The hunters want to find the vampire encounters regardless, and adding a Rumour token to a card does not give the hunters any additional information about where it might be - it simply increases its value by 3.

Of all the additional "Advanced Rules", the Rumour one is the one I'm most dubious of. It also doesn't encourage me that it didn't exist in 2nd Edition.

I feel like if I'm playing Dracula I'd like to start spreading rumors of vampires if I see the hunters trying to play the "let's stick around here and bulk up on items/events" game. It really has to put a spring in their step and encourage them to get a move on it in order to hunt down that vampire. If Dracula wants to fight someone, I think it'd be best to grab a distracted hunter who isn't well equipped.

Remember, the benefit of searching during daytime is that the investigators run no risk in getting events for Dracula. Because of that one little perk, defensive hunters are more encouraged to stay put for a bit. But if the hunters move by day, then gather items by night, Dracula is more likely to bulk up on his events. Rumors just seem to balance out the "should I stay or should I go?" mentality.
 
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Randal Clark
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You only get a max of 4 rumors in the game and only if 3 weeks would have passed. The reason you don't need them on the board is because they move with the facedown location card. Suppose you stumble upon a car in draculas track say 3rd card which is now turned up and the rumor is on 4th card. Then you know that the rumor is within one space of you but which way, which is how a rumor works. That is why it doesn't go on the board. Then you have a choice if you find the rumor you know you went wrong direction away from dracula. Do you stay and investigate the rumor or head the other way towards dracula, very subtle change that make the game interesting. I am strongly considering getting third edition to replace my second edition. It seems to fix my issues with 2nd ed game of luck in dice rolls being removed for trains and combat.
 
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Cameron McKenzie
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Haven't played the game yet, but it seems to be that the rumor tokens are a pretty decent way to re-balance the scoring to be closer to second edition.

In 2nd edition, Dracula would usually win by lasting at least 2 dawns (12 turns) and getting a total of 2 matured vampires and/or hunter defeats.

In 3rd edition, that isn't nearly enough to win unless you are playing with rumor tokens.


I figured a rumor'ed vampire encounter is about equal in value to a matured vampire from second edition. It may be easier to think of it as fair if you imagine that the vampires without rumors aren't really worth their full value.

The rumor has some nice advantages over providing full value to every matured vampire:
-They were able to get rid of the mechanic of clearing the trail after a vampire matures (I assume... it could be printed on the encounter card itself)
-Hunters are not taken by surprise when Dracula score surges ahead with no warning at all
-Hunters have some way at least to deduce the possible vampire location if they stumble upon Dracula's trail and there is a rumor elsewhere on the trail (especially if they can guess which general direction Dracula was going)


As for playing as Dracula, it seems like you might avoid placing the rumor token on the first vampire you drop if you feel like the hunters are likely to find your trail soon or if they hunters have already begun pinpointing your location. You might also be more willing to hold back the rumor token if you have multiple vampires in you hand since you will have many opportunities to use the rumor token.

Again, I haven't played it, but the rumor token does seem like a nice way to even out the scoring mechanic and enhance the deductions slightly. In 2nd edition, it was usually just blind luck as to whether the hunters could find your vampires before they matured. Now, you can "hide" your vampires by not putting a rumor on them, but they won't be worth as much.
 
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Chris J Davis
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MasterDinadan wrote:
Haven't played the game yet, but it seems to be that the rumor tokens are a pretty decent way to re-balance the scoring to be closer to second edition.

In 2nd edition, Dracula would usually win by lasting at least 2 dawns (12 turns) and getting a total of 2 matured vampires and/or hunter defeats.

In 3rd edition, that isn't nearly enough to win unless you are playing with rumor tokens.


I figured a rumor'ed vampire encounter is about equal in value to a matured vampire from second edition. It may be easier to think of it as fair if you imagine that the vampires without rumors aren't really worth their full value.

The rumor has some nice advantages over providing full value to every matured vampire:
-They were able to get rid of the mechanic of clearing the trail after a vampire matures (I assume... it could be printed on the encounter card itself)


This is printed on the card now (it clears the last three cards).

And I see! Thank you for filling me in on the 2nd Ed info.
 
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Cameron McKenzie
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Ok, that's an improvement then. In 2nd edition, it cleared 5 cards. This was a mixed thing - it essentially made a minimum of 6 turns between maturing each vampire, but it made the trail so short that after maturing a vampire the Hunters may have no idea where you are if they weren't lucky enough to find your trail (or only found the oldest parts of it).

Reducing to 3 alleviates the problem of hunters getting lost and makes it slightly less frustrating if you have multiple vampires in your hand, so I guess it is pretty fair to reduce the value of "extra" vampires beyond the rumor'ed one.



On the subject of scoring, it's also interesting to discuss the points for defeating hunters. In 2nd edition, you alternate between 3 turns of day and 3 turns of night. During day, Dracula was really not much threat at all, while at night he was pretty much invulnerable and could completely wreck hunters that weren't prepared.

This led to an annoying strategy where Dracula would just creep around near a hunter (typically Mina) and then jump on them turn 4 (start of the first night) and try to get a bite off for a quick 2 points.

3rd edition seems to get rid of the day/night mechanics of combat, so I imagine it is even easier for Dracula to jump on a hunter early for a quick defeat. However, they've rebalanced the scoring of defeated hunters so that this is no longer very rewarding. Basically, Dracula should go after a hunter that happens to wander close and doesn't seem prepared, but he shouldn't go around pursuing the hunters like he did sometimes in 2nd.

Also the timing is a bit more plausible. When 6 turns was equal to one day, it was weird to think of Dracula trekking halfway across Europe in a single day. And thank god they got rid of that stupid rule where time doesn't advance while Dracula is at sea (in 2nd edition, it was necessary to prevent Dracula from fleeing to see to wait out the daytime)
 
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Chris J Davis
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MasterDinadan wrote:
Ok, that's an improvement then. In 2nd edition, it cleared 5 cards. This was a mixed thing - it essentially made a minimum of 6 turns between maturing each vampire, but it made the trail so short that after maturing a vampire the Hunters may have no idea where you are if they weren't lucky enough to find your trail (or only found the oldest parts of it).

Reducing to 3 alleviates the problem of hunters getting lost and makes it slightly less frustrating if you have multiple vampires in your hand, so I guess it is pretty fair to reduce the value of "extra" vampires beyond the rumor'ed one.



On the subject of scoring, it's also interesting to discuss the points for defeating hunters. In 2nd edition, you alternate between 3 turns of day and 3 turns of night. During day, Dracula was really not much threat at all, while at night he was pretty much invulnerable and could completely wreck hunters that weren't prepared.

This led to an annoying strategy where Dracula would just creep around near a hunter (typically Mina) and then jump on them turn 4 (start of the first night) and try to get a bite off for a quick 2 points.

3rd edition seems to get rid of the day/night mechanics of combat, so I imagine it is even easier for Dracula to jump on a hunter early for a quick defeat. However, they've rebalanced the scoring of defeated hunters so that this is no longer very rewarding. Basically, Dracula should go after a hunter that happens to wander close and doesn't seem prepared, but he shouldn't go around pursuing the hunters like he did sometimes in 2nd.

Also the timing is a bit more plausible. When 6 turns was equal to one day, it was weird to think of Dracula trekking halfway across Europe in a single day. And thank god they got rid of that stupid rule where time doesn't advance while Dracula is at sea (in 2nd edition, it was necessary to prevent Dracula from fleeing to see to wait out the daytime)


I'm really keen to play again (maybe this time as a hunter), as it really did seem very hard for the hunters in our game; if I had used rumour tokens then I probably would have won by the end of the first week! And you say the original game was balanced in favour of the hunters, despite the vampires being worth more by default? This has made me curious...
 
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Jeffery Hudson
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Quote:
3rd edition seems to get rid of the day/night mechanics of combat, so I imagine it is even easier for Dracula to jump on a hunter early for a quick defeat. However, they've rebalanced the scoring of defeated hunters so that this is no longer very rewarding.


The day/night mechanics are changed. If the hunters move to drac in the day, then they will fight dracula at dusk using night combat rules. if Drac moves into a hunter then dracula will fight the hunter at dawn using day rules. There are ofcourse cards that can change this, but it does not mean it's easier for Dracula to snipe mina. It must be planned.

Also, as the weeks pass, Dracula receives Despair tokens. When Drac eats a hunter he gets 2 VP + 1 VP per Despair Token. So...the longer the game goes the more points Hunter defeats are worth.
 
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