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Subject: Campaign duration. How about a shorter campaign: 5 scenarios. rss

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Claudio M
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Hi,
I'd like to hear the opinion of people who played the game. I've never played, but I've backed the Inferno campaign and will get the base game soon.

I'm planning an Arcadia Quest campaign day at my place. The idea is to go through an entire campaign in one sitting. Most likely we will start early afternoon, have dinner in between scenarios and finish in the evening.

From my estimate, an entire campaign would be a bit too much for one session. I've read different reports on the length of the campaign. Some people say 9 hours, some say less.
A campaign is 6 scenario, each taking 45-60 minutes, plus upgrades and scenario setup. So, according to the book, a campaign should be around 6 hours?

I was thinking that playing less scenarios, like 5 or even 4, should give pretty much the same game experience in less time. Anybody has feedback on this?

The way I would do it (assume 5 scenarios):
1) Play 2 scenarios from outer circle, 2 from inner circle, then the final boss.
2) This way you can still leverage the "titles" mechanic of the campaign. Some early scenarios don't contain a title to win anyway.
3) Initial drafting upgrade cards is done according to the Episodic mode variant in the rulebook.
4) Total time becomes 5/6 of the full campaign.

A few notes:
a) How important is winning titles? Because if it's minor, then 4 scenarios would be equally nice.

b) I don't fully like the drafting of upgrade cards specified in the rulebook for episodic mode. My variant would be:
Give the 5 starter cards to each guild. They have to choose only 3 card from that set and discard the rest. Then give each guild a fixed amount of coins (it could be the expected average from an easy scenario of the outer circle?): with this money guilds will purchase 3 level 1 upgrade cards according to the classical drafting mechanism of the campaign.

What do you think?
Also, is a campaign really 6 hours? More? Less?
Consider that in my gaming group we all participate in setup/tear down of board games, so I believe 4 people can setup a scenario pretty quickly.
 
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Trueflight Silverwing
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Waverly
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45-60 minutes is on the long end of the game estimates and that is including the setup time, not in addition to. That is also figuring only a single person setting up, if you have multiple people doing things, it will go much faster. Setting up the tiles is the most time consuming part, so have one person do that while someone else places monsters and someone else places tokens and so on. I've seen some games go extremely fast. We've sat down to play a few times and burned through several scenarios without even thinking about it. The Campaign is just the right length the way it is I think. You cna easily get through all of the missions within 5 hours. Granted, some of it depends on your play group and how quickly they get a grasp for the simple mechanics of the game and how fast they take their turns. I have played with some people that can take forever to make their decisions and even contemplated adding a turn timer when those people are present.

Cutting down on the scenarios that you play would also mean losing out on loot. Not only do you get items from the scenario itself, but at the end of each is when you do the draft of level items for new gear. Cutting out a mission means that you will not get to use the level 5 gear which could really hurt in the end. The loss of special items from the scenarios as well as the titles that you get in order to make use of special effects in later missions is something to consider too. None of them are game changing, but they do help.

The drafting aspect of the rewards after the game is part of the fun. you can't always just cherry pick the best things so it adds some variety. At the same time, you end up with a handful of stuff, but you can only buy a few of them anyway. You are limited to only three items each time and you are also limited by the amount of gold that you earned on the previous mission. If anything, this is the one thing that I would leave unchanged as it really adds a lot to the game and brings an RPG feeling to the campaign. That whole random draw combined with being able to afford the cool stuff that you want is part of the fun that makes Arcadia Quest what it is.
 
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Claudio M
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Ender02 wrote:
The drafting aspect of the rewards after the game is part of the fun... If anything, this is the one thing that I would leave unchanged as it really adds a lot to the game and brings an RPG feeling to the campaign.

I have no intention of removing the drafting of upgrade cards after a scenario, that's not what I meant. This will definitely stay.
The only thing that must change in a 5 scenarios campaign is the initial setup.

Ender02 wrote:
Cutting out a mission means that you will not get to use the level 5 gear which could really hurt in the end.

This is not the case with what I wrote in my initial post.

Let me explain.
A full campaign is 6 scenarios: from 1 to 6.
My variant is 5 scenarios: from 2 to 6. The first one is removed.
The campaign would start with scenario 2. After its setup, everything else is unchanged.
But because we start from 2, we need to change the initial distribution of gear. And my idea would be to give each guild a choice of 3 out of the 5 starter items. After that the usual drafting and purchasing of level 1 cards (that are obtained after scenario 1 in the full campaign) would take place. But the amount of money needs to be decided somehow. That's why is wrote that a good starting point would be a fixed amount of coins for every guild: the amount could be the expected amount to be obtained in the scenario 1 (say 12).
So the campaign starts at scenario 2 out of 6, with each guild having up to 6 items, 3 from the starter deck and 3 from the level 1 deck.
 
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corum irsei
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supertopper wrote:
Also, is a campaign really 6 hours? More? Less?
Consider that in my gaming group we all participate in setup/tear down of board games, so I believe 4 people can setup a scenario pretty quickly.
For our group it took longer. We managed to play the first two scenarios in one session, but all other scenarios took too long.

I felt setup was really slow (up to 30 minutes for the later scenarios), and in my experience, it's hard to share the work.

Actual gameplay was usually below one hour, but not by much. then again, one of our players is very AP-prone. We also had several rules questions coming up that took some time to look up and resolve. On top of that, drafting the items after a game also took a while.

All in all, I'd estimate it took us about ten hours to complete the whole campaign.
 
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