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Subject: Looking for a good "RPG-in-a-box" rss

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Mike Manning
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I have just recently gotten into thematic board games (and board gaming in general really). I have never played an full on, paper and pencil RPG, but I like the idea of having a character that grows in power and abilities over the course of a campaign.

I was wondering if there were any good solo RPG style board games that come in a box and include a strong thematic campaign. I am sure there is a thread about this topic somewhere, but I am not great at using this site yet, and I am having trouble locating a thread about this topic.

I recently purchased Mice and Mystics for myself, my wife, and my niece to play. I'd love a more "grown up" version of something like that. I also really enjoy Mage Knight, but it doesn't have the leveling up and campaign aspect of a longer "journey" style game. I'd like the game to last several gaming sessions. Are there games out there like what I am looking for?
 
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pax domina
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I recently saw mention of The 7th Continent that sounded similar to what you're asking about.
 
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Paul Goddard
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Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set may be what you are looking for.
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Mauricio Montoya
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I think you could take a look into Legends of Andor, another DM-less RPG-in-a-box that gives you an experience similar to traditional pen and paper RPGS, in a classic fantasy setting, and without all the complications and the need of a game master because the game itself controls the stroy and the enemies. That one has multiple stories in the base set meant to be played in sequence, although I'm not sure if the chraracters advance and keep their changes campaign style.

There are some games under the D&D label that condense the experience down to the dungeon-crawling components and automate the exploration and enemies, like the Legend of Drizzt and the others from the D&D Adventure System. Those are fun and fast, and work fine if you are more into the combat and dice throwing aspects and less into the acting out the characters and decision-making from traditional RPGs.

There are also a lot of "ameritrash" games that give you a RPG-lite experience in lots different settings with pre-made scenarios than can be replayed a lot of times (story is not fixed, you have some basic stories and what happens in them change a lot thanks to a deck of events or dice throws at certain points). You can find everything from feudal Japan to the old west, victorian gothic horror, lovecraftian investigations, cyberpunk, space cowboys, etc... But unless you get a DM, a bunch of dice and a set of rulebooks for a more traditional pen and paper game, most of the RPG-like boardgames you find out there tend to be just individual scenarios or very short campaigns, and the characters start fresh each time or don't change much over the course of the story. They are just meant to be played by a different audience, one that wants just enough RPG elements over a single session without committing long-term to an ongoing campaign.
 
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Jacob Schoberg
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Elkhorn
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Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition) is my favorite RPG experience in a box. It doesn't natively support solo, as it has an overlord, but there are a few cooperative adventures available.

Alternatively, a user named
Paul Reney
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created some automated overlord/monster variants that are supposed to be really awesome. Haven't used them myself, though.

For a bit smaller scale, Warhammer Quest: The Adventure Card Game might fit the ticket. I enjoyed it a lot more than the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game.
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Sword & Sorcery by Ares has everything you want, but it won't be out until the end of the year. There are plenty of details about it up on its Kickstarter, and you can still pre-order everything including exclusives through the pledge manager, which will only stay open until March 15.

If you are looking for something right now, than Galaxy Defenders (also by Ares, of which they borrowed some mechanisms to use in S&S) also works, but is said to be more tactical, and also has a sci-fi theme if those work for you.
 
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Wesley M
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Magic Realm


If you are interested in Pathfinder and have an IoS device hold off until its out on that.. Youll save yourself a bundle im sure.
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Jacob Schoberg
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mearendil wrote:
I think you could take a look into Legends of Andor, another DM-less RPG-in-a-box that gives you an experience similar to traditional pen and paper RPGS, in a classic fantasy setting, and without all the complications and the need of a game master. That one has multiple stories in the base set meant to be played in sequence, although I'm not sure if the chraracters advance and keep their changes campaign style.


I love Legends of Andor but I don't think it really fits what the OP is looking for. There's no character progression between missions, no "leveling up" or anything of the sort. On top of that, Legends of Andor is more of a puzzle than an RPG game.

Again, I'm not trying to bash Legends of Andor, it's totally awesome, but if you go in to it expecting it to be a dungeon crawl you're gonna have a bad time.
 
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Martin Larouche
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- any of the Pathfinders games:
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Rise of the Runelords – Base Set
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Skull & Shackles – Base Set
Pathfinder Adventure Card Game: Wrath of the Righteous – Base Set
- Star Wars: Imperial Assault
- Arcadia Quest
- Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition)
- Galaxy Defenders
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Nicola Bocchetta
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Mage Knight Board Game has the level-ups, but it's more puzzle-like than a real rpg campaign.

On another theme, you might try the loved-or-hated Android, if you're into sci-fi as well.

Also Arkham Horror has many RPG aspects to it, but it's not fantasy.
 
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Jim Ryan
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For me, the grown up version of Mice and Mystics is Descent but it doesn't really fit the bill of a game that is played solo.
 
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Phillip Harpring
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Shadowrun: Crossfire has systems for persistent character development between games, but it doesn't really have a thematic campaign, at least not in the base set. It only comes with three mission types and a few variants that you can grind for karma (XP). That said, there are additional free missions available online, user made missions and campaigns, and an official expansion available if you want more.
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Matt Weber
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Emu Prime wrote:
Shadowrun: Crossfire has systems for persistent character development between games, but it doesn't really have a thematic campaign, at least not in the base set. It only comes with three mission types and a few variants that you can grind for karma (XP). That said, there are additional free missions available online, user made missions and campaigns, and an official expansion available if you want more.






+1 to this

it may not be the "RPG" that you seek, but it's a solid deck-builder with some strong thematic elements that take the place of a missing long campaign.
The add-on/expansion mission types are interesting, as are the varied "roles" and expanded card selection. It plays quickly-ish and is quite difficult at times.

It's also quite a lot of fun.
 
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Kyle
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Does putting a RPG core set in a box count? There are no games that replicate the RPG experience, they are all watered down, because they have to be.
 
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