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Subject: "Surge" ability ?? rss

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John Van Wagoner
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getting ready for our first game some night later this week, but must admit I really don't grasp the whole "surge concept" (and I will have to be the one explaining the rules)...

my wife and I are both veteran 2nd Ed players, so most of what's here will fall into place quite easily...but even after many reads of the "learn to play" I honestly don't get the surge ability at all!

can someone, step by step, explain it? thanks!
 
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L VonMeister
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A Surge is a special ability of your character (or a monster) that they have access to when surge symbol is rolled (or cast, in the case of RB3E).
They aren't like typical "always on" abilities.

Surge symbols rolled (or cast) can be spent to activate an ability for that attack.
 
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Julia
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Some effects have a cost, represented by a surge symbol. These effects can be on heroes' sheets, on items, wherever. Whenever you cast your tokens, you may have a surge result (or several). As a combat action, you may spend a surge symbol to trigger a single surge costing ability, and resolving its effects. Or you may spend more than one surge symbol to trigger an ability costing more than one surge (these are represented by a number before the surge symbol, or by an X, where X means any number from 1 to infinity)
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Manu
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... and don't forget that in a given combat round, each surge ability can only be used once (if memory serves me right). So every time you start a new round (you and monster re-casting all your tokens), all surge abilities are fair game again.
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Enon Sci
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John_VW wrote:
getting ready for our first game some night later this week, but must admit I really don't grasp the whole "surge concept" (and I will have to be the one explaining the rules)...

my wife and I are both veteran 2nd Ed players, so most of what's here will fall into place quite easily...but even after many reads of the "learn to play" I honestly don't get the surge ability at all!

can someone, step by step, explain it? thanks!


I expect your curiosities have been disabused by now, but this single mechanic is one of the coolest and smartest design changes in the whole pantheon, imho. It is basically what we programmers call encapsulation -- it allows the designers to dream up whatever they want as an effect, and nestle it into the core design without issue.

Really cool and forward thinking addition (brought over from Descent).

On the off chance another take would be helpful:

Surge results are just a currency that can be spent on abilities. A surge has no inherent meaning on its own, it is just used to trigger/fuel character (and item) specific powers.

For one monster, a surge might be a healing ability. In another, a surge could be a fire attack that does 3 damage. In yet another, it could be a lightening attack that has you roll the terrain dice, doing damage for every symbol that matches your current terrain, etc.

By the way, that last one is essentially the default surge power of one of the heroes (it isn't thematically lightening, though).
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John Van Wagoner
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Scarlet Witch wrote:
Some effects have a cost, represented by a surge symbol. These effects can be on heroes' sheets, on items, wherever. Whenever you cast your tokens, you may have a surge result (or several). As a combat action, you may spend a surge symbol to trigger a single surge costing ability, and resolving its effects. Or you may spend more than one surge symbol to trigger an ability costing more than one surge (these are represented by a number before the surge symbol, or by an X, where X means any number from 1 to infinity)
so, the surge icon alone means nothing; I may have an ability requiring surge(s) on a card/item/etc. and would then need to use my "cast surges" to use/activate that ability?
 
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Julia
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John_VW wrote:
Scarlet Witch wrote:
Some effects have a cost, represented by a surge symbol. These effects can be on heroes' sheets, on items, wherever. Whenever you cast your tokens, you may have a surge result (or several). As a combat action, you may spend a surge symbol to trigger a single surge costing ability, and resolving its effects. Or you may spend more than one surge symbol to trigger an ability costing more than one surge (these are represented by a number before the surge symbol, or by an X, where X means any number from 1 to infinity)
so, the surge icon alone means nothing; I may have an ability requiring surge(s) on a card/item/etc. and would then need to use my "cast surges" to use/activate that ability?


Yes. If you don't have a surge effect triggerable (on your character sheet, on any of your assets, on any of your skills) the surge symbol is basically a blank.

But if you have any "surge" effect on your assets /sheet / skills, and you cast a surge result with your tokens, you can spend the result to trigger and resolve that ability
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David Williams
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Some enemies also allow you to spend Surges to cancel some surge or other ability of their own. I don't recall an example offhand, but it is worth checking for this when a combat starts, even if you don't have any combat abilities of your own.
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John B
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I ran into a monster that had two 1 surge abilities. Do I just pick one of them, or are both activated on a single surge token? Did I miss this in the rule book? An example is the Young Dragons event in the main event deck.
 
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Julia
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johnb4bgg wrote:
I ran into a monster that had two 1 surge abilities. Do I just pick one of them, or are both activated on a single surge token? Did I miss this in the rule book? An example is the Young Dragons event in the main event deck.


They are different surge actions. During a combat round, only one surge ability can be activated per combat action, so, the monster spends 1 surge and resolves one of the two. The just activated surge ability cannot be used again during this combat round.
 
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John B
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Thanks for the quick reply. As a solo player, I guess I gotta figure out which of the two I'm gonna inflict upon myself...
 
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Julia
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johnb4bgg wrote:
Thanks for the quick reply. As a solo player, I guess I gotta figure out which of the two I'm gonna inflict upon myself...


There's a rule in the Unbreakable Bonds expansion saying you solve them from top to bottom when soloing / playing coop. Then clearly, you can go with self-infliction of the greatest pain regardless of this rule
 
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Henke N
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1) Another question regarding surge abilities, let's say a monster has 2(2 tokens) stacked surges and also 2 abilities, first ability costs 1 surge and second ability costs 2. Normally the monster would use the more expensive surge ability however in my last game the 2 cost surge ability would do nothing against me while the 1 surge ability would. Should I use the 1 cost surge ability by spending the 2 surges or should I simply do nothing in this case?

2) Can I spend/resolve several agility symbols on the same combat action or do they count as different actions each time I use one?

3) would someone mind going over to the unbreakable bonds forum and see my question about a specific scenario. Link: https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1852707/locus-swarm-defeati...
See 2 last posts in that thread!

Many thanks for your help
 
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Carlos Pérez Cantalapiedra
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liath wrote:
1) Another question regarding surge abilities, let's say a monster has 2 stacked surges and also 2 abilities, first ability costs 1 surge and second ability costs 2. Normally the monster would use the more expensive surge ability however in my last game the 2 cost surge ability would do nothing against while the 1 surge ability would. Should I use the 1 cost surge ability by spending the 2 surges or should I simply do nothing in this case?

2) Can I spend/resolve several agility symbols on the same combat action or do they count as different actions each time I use one?

3) would someone mind going over to the unbreakable bonds forum and see my question about a specific scenario. Link: https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1852707/locus-swarm-defeati...
See 2 last posts N that thread!

Many thanks for your help


1) You should spend 1 surge to pay for the 1 surge ability, then wait to see what happens later with the remaining 1 surge (except if it is a 2 surges token I guess, in which case you spend both).

2) I play that in general they count as different actions.

3) I have not played that scenario yet.
 
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Henke N
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urkary wrote:
liath wrote:
1) Another question regarding surge abilities, let's say a monster has 2 stacked surges and also 2 abilities, first ability costs 1 surge and second ability costs 2. Normally the monster would use the more expensive surge ability however in my last game the 2 cost surge ability would do nothing against while the 1 surge ability would. Should I use the 1 cost surge ability by spending the 2 surges or should I simply do nothing in this case?

2) Can I spend/resolve several agility symbols on the same combat action or do they count as different actions each time I use one?

3) would someone mind going over to the unbreakable bonds forum and see my question about a specific scenario. Link: https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/1852707/locus-swarm-defeati...
See 2 last posts N that thread!

Many thanks for your help


1) You should spend 1 surge to pay for the 1 surge ability, then wait to see what happens later with the remaining 1 surge (except if it is a 2 surges token I guess, in which case you spend both).

2) I play that in general they count as different actions.

3) I have not played that scenario yet.


Thanks for your reply
Anyone else that could chime in and help me with Locust Swarm scenario? See my earlier post in this thread! Cheers
 
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