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Subject: Help me improve on this game rss

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José S
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Hi, I was wondering if it could be possible to post a Mage Knight game so that you can write what you would do if you were on my shoes.

I've just started a game on Vassal as Goldyx and the setup is as follows:




What would you do next?.
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Alison Mandible
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That is not an awesome start. Probably I would take Planning, then use Stamina (source gold) and a sideways Rage to walk to the right-hand ruin and see what I draw.
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TonyKR
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Mandible's suggestion places you decently and gives you the most options for the future while spending almost nothing. That's probably the best choice.

Or you could take Rethink or Planning Great Start and make an attempt at the keep (depending on what you draw, obviously).

But yeah, not a very pretty start to the game.

Edit: Not sure why I said Planning when I meant Great Start.
 
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Georg D.
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grasa_total wrote:
That is not an awesome start. Probably I would take Planning, then use Stamina (source gold) and a sideways Rage to walk to the right-hand ruin and see what I draw.

Why the righthand ruin? My first goal would be the keep as it is the only location where you can hire an unit. In addition the increased handsize could be helpful with the ruin next to it.
Therefore I would start with planning and use a swiftness to move next to the keep. You can conquer the keep on turn 2. For level up take heroic tale (or if you are really bad wounded perhaps in the need - although I'm not a big fan of this card ). 3rd turn hire the swordsman. Then try the ruin. You won't have many combat cards left but with +1 card from planning and +1 card from the keep you could have a chance.
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LargeGoblin
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This is a very interesting idea for a thread. That's definitely not an easy start because there's so much unknown information. It's much easier if you can kill an orc on the first turn to level up and get an advanced action. At least you drew some combat cards, so you're ready to do some fighting.

I'm not the world's foremost expert, but I'd probably start by taking Great Start. I know it's got lots of haters, but I prefer to save Planning until the second day, since I'll have more cards on that day, and Planning will give a greater benefit. Sometimes the dummy will take it, but that's pretty rare (20% chance). Great Start lets you put almost half your cards in your hand at once. In the first round, you often have to play your entire hand or down to one card, since your cards are pretty weak, so Planning isn't very helpful in my experience.

If I got a movement card and either Will Focus or Mana Draw, I'd attempt to tackle that ruins on the left and snag Whirlwind and a boatload of mana crystals. Will Focus with a green mana die and Swiftness would give you six ranged attack. Mana draw with the gold mana die would let you turn one green die into two white tokens and you could use both Swiftness cards for six ranged attack. With that much ranged attack, you're very likely to be able to pick off one of the two monsters in the ranged phase.

If I got Crystallize, I'd probably use March to move one space to be next to the keep by playing Stamina to see what's in there and crystallize a green mana to reroll one of those to try to get something different. I like to save gold mana in the source as long a possible.

If you got Tranquility, you could really afford to take some wounds, since there is green mana in the source to let you heal two of them. This would be really helpful for taking out the ruins.

If I got a March card, I'd probably use a green mana die to power it and move next to the keep with the intention of conquering it if I flipped something that I could take without too much fuss. If that thing was too tough, I'd move onto the ruins next to the keep. If I gotta take a beating, I'd rather do it for the spell and mana crystals.

If I got influence cards, I'd again head for the keep.

Taking the keep would be nice because you could recruit the Swordsmen if you happen to draw influence on this turn or the next turn, and you'd get an extra card to help when taking out that ruins next to it.

I know that's a lot of probablies, but it depends on exactly what I drew with Great Start. On gaining my first level up, I'd take Blood Ritual, since it's my favorite advanced action. It's one of the few ways to gain non-basic mana. This really helps with casting spells at night. I also really like to get a unit in the first round, so either taking that keep or the ruins on the right would be extremely helpful. It's possible you could take out the mage tower and get a unit there, but those purple guys can be really tough when fortified.

I wonder if any two people would come up with the same plan here. There are so many options in this game.

Edit: I find it interesting the way people will come in here and tell me I'm dumb for how I play, but I'll be looking at their ideas like "are you crazy?" In the end, though, it all seems to work out, which is a great thing about this game.
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Matthew Cousins
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Quick question - are you playing with Lost Legion or the base game? I can't tell if you have the updated version of In Need or not; it also affects whether you'll have access to Crystal Joy as well.

If this was my game, I think I'd grab Great Start and charge head-long into the keep, playing Swiftness for move 2 to see who you're fighting, and then moving in with Stamina + 1 other card that you drew. I don't mind taking an extra wound or two (hopefully not 3!) early on, especially since it almost guarantees a level up + hand size bonus. There are two very good recruiting cards in the AA offer, so if you go for one of the ruins first there's no chance to use them unless you go for the keep first. I'd say heroic tale is better, but I've had surprising success with In Need as well (Lost Legion version).

Goldyx can handle wounds reasonably well with his powered crystal joy, and you still have tranquility too. Having the swordsman as well as an extra card in hand makes taking on the next-door ruin much more tenable after resting if necessary.
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Carsten Jorgensen
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I've found Goldyx is not the best one for solo - at least my lowest scores. Though some nice places even if tough ones.

I would go slow. There'll be plenty of time to spend many cards in a turn and catch up with the dummy (which crystals he has could make a small difference in which AA to take later). There is no reason to rush somewhere.

Take planning. I always take it in turn 1 since you are low on crystals and have a low hand limit. Then use 1 swiftness and move towards the keep. There is very little chance you can get to use 2 swiftness in a single turn anyway. Then you have both rage in case the keep unit should be a tough one (and you have the gold die left to make it 6 attack).

Turn 2: Stamina or swiftness + 1 card you draw end of turn 1 (or both if you draw nice cards) = move to keep. Then take heroic tale or In Need (probably the first is better unless you play LL - then it might be the dummy crystals which decide it and how many wounds you take in the assault). Or it might actually be better to take In Need due to the 2 green dice in the poll. Then 1 can be used next turn.

Turn 3: Hire the swordsmen with HT or IN + what else is needed. Perhaps rest first if using HT.

Turn 4: Move to ruin next to keep.

Turn 5: Rest if not done so already - or heal using a green die if Tranquility has arrived. If so it could be combined with either turn 3 or 4.

Turn 6: Attack the ruin. You might not take out both, but the rewards are worth some effort. Take wounds if it means you can take the ruin in one turn.

Turn 7: If you get a turn 7 attack again.

If it is 2 cards on average for the dummy you should get 8-9 turns. My goal here would be to end up on the ruin next to the tower. That way you get to see the unit there for an attack next round. Great if the ruin can be taken, but unlikely you have enough cards to do that.
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Jochen Wiesner
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Fluxx wrote:
grasa_total wrote:
That is not an awesome start. Probably I would take Planning, then use Stamina (source gold) and a sideways Rage to walk to the right-hand ruin and see what I draw.

Why the righthand ruin? My first goal would be the keep as it is the only location where you can hire an unit. In addition the increased handsize could be helpful with the ruin next to it.
Therefore I would start with planning and use a swiftness to move next to the keep. You can conquer the keep on turn 2. For level up take heroic tale (or if you are really bad wounded perhaps in the need - although I'm not a big fan of this card ). 3rd turn hire the swordsman. Then try the ruin. You won't have many combat cards left but with +1 card from planning and +1 card from the keep you could have a chance.


I second that for the most part. The cards allow for movement as well as attack, so that's the way to go. No Great Start needed, and Planning has a 60% chance of you going second and getting one less turn. So it's Tactics #1 to ensure going first -> Keep -> Heroic Tale -> probably the Monster Den on the left -> explore further. I tend to speed up my exploration and ignore even valuaby sites with the goal of exploringthe first brown tile at day 2, while taking only the sites that are in a direction that offers more options for exploration.
 
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Jorge
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I'll go the other way a bit.

Tactic: I'd take Early bird. There's no reason to discard cards with Rethink -- I like your hand in fact. Planning, eh, I don't like it a lot on Day #1; you need a good handsize to take advantage of it. You'll probably waste Planning anyway on turn #1 if you go for the Keep and you'll take good handsize from your Keep later on. And Great Start is too risky; it puts you almost certainly as second player and you don't know what you'll be drawing. You don't need extra cards, Mana Draw won't help much here and you could just draw Influence. With Early Bird you go first, get an extra turn and eliminate this tactic from the game, which will let you use Rethink later with 100% probability of going first.

Turn #1: play Swiftness to move next to the keep; if you see an enemy that can be taken down with 6 damage (e.g., Crossbowmen, Swordsmen), go for it by playing your other two move cards. If it's Crossbowmen, great, just power up stamina with the Gold die, otherwise keep it for a Rage. Even with Crossbowmen (or Green Heroes) through you might want to keep the second Rage, that's up to you. In the base game you have 50% chance to encounter an enemy of Armor up to 6; in Lost Legion it's 66.67% probable, as far as I can recall. Apart from Guardsmen and Golems, you may easily conquer the Keep on Turn #1.

Rewards: probably heroic tale. It will help you level up/.

Turn #2: If you saw Swordsmen/Golems, just finish your Turn #1. Otherwise just get the Swordsmen, the only recruitable unit.

Later on: as you'll burn your first cards quite quickly, you can take your time on the keep, crystalizing/healing. I would recommend later on the Ruins with the spell and the Crystals. If you eventually keep one Swiftness, with Swiftness + Concentration and the Swordsmen it won't be difficult to take the Ruins. Call to Arms/Call to Glory is a very good Spell, although you probably won't use it on this round. Alternatively, you can go for the Unit Shrine, which is a bit easier. Most likely you'll level up, so (using a rules exception) you'll use your new command token to take a second unit right off the bat -- I like Savage Monks a lot, but Red Cape Monks are also acceptable if you need elemental attack or see some Ice Golems in the Mage Tower.

On the other hand, it's totally viable to ignore spells altogether now, take an extra unit from the ruins and move on, as the spell offer is not very impressive. Call to Arms/Call to Glory is a very good spell, but hey, it ain't Expose/Mass Expose or Tremor/Earthquake or even Offering/Sacrifice (which would probably be great with Goldyx). Just refresh two spells for night #1.
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José S
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Firstable, thank you all for your answers, they really help me. It was getting harder for me to improve at this game and I think that this post is going to be a turning point.

So, the first thing to do is to choose tactic. Since this is the first turn and the layout is not a great one, I think that should be wise to save planning and great start. I'll pick early bird.

The dummy player gets Rethink.

I use swiftness to get next to the keep and the token revealed is a Crossbowmen one. They have the Swift ability, so it's impossible to me to block them. The way I played until now, was to avoid them. Should I attack them and get two wounds?. Since healing is on my deed deck I think it's a good idea.





I think I have two options to attack them:
1.- Power Stamina with the gold die and attack with two Rages.
2.- Use Swiftness and Stamina to get to the keep and power Rage to attack.

Either way I get two wounds but I think that the best way is the second because I could save a Rage for the next turn. ¿What do you think?.

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Ben Kyo
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Both options are OK. Your plan for the rest of the round could be to get in need, to get enough influence to easily recruit next turn, and aim to combine will focus with swiftness and your unit to make a serious dent in the enemies defending the ruin next door. To that end I would prefer to use both rages than use up the last remaining swiftness.
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Jorge
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Cancuino wrote:
I think I have two options to attack them:
1.- Power Stamina with the gold die and attack with two Rages.
2.- Use Swiftness and Stamina to get to the keep and power Rage to attack.
Crossbowmen, you really couldn't have had more luck in that! I'd personally power stamina and use both my rages. Then I'd keep the second Swiftness to use with Concentration later on in the ruins. Swiftness + second concentration + Utem Swordsmen should be enough to take either the Unit Shrine or the Spell & Crystals ruin.

As you have Tranquility in your deck, you can afford taking 2 wounds; it's not a big deal, you can heal them later on. Really, the Crossbowmen were the best enemy unit to encounter, only 2 wounds and 4 attack needed.

As for the next turns, I've already given laid down my plan. Recruit, heal, go for a ruin (spell or unit) and get the hell out of there.
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David desJardins
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You weren't likely to be able to defeat and block the keep defender anyway, so Crossbowmen are a great draw for you, as their swiftness is irrelevant. I'd go ahead and finish your move with Stamina with blue die, then play both Rage cards to kill them.
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José S
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I power Stamina and use two Rages to finish the Crossbowmen.
As advanced action I choose In Need and between Glittering Fortune and Green Crystal Craft, I choose Green Crystal Craft.


The dummy player draws 3 cards.

This round should be pretty straight forward, playing In Need and promise to get the Utem Swordsmen.





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David desJardins
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Cancuino wrote:
This round should be pretty straight forward, playing In Need and promise to get the Utem Swordsmen.


I can't read your cards, so I don't know if you have the Lost Legion version or the original version of In Need. But it gives Influence 8 or 9 by itself, and you only need 6 to hire the Swordsmen. The extra Influence is going to be wasted, anyway.

I guess you could play the basic version of In Need in order to not touch the green die in the Source. But that seems too conservative to me.

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Jorge
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And I would choose Heroic Tale anyway, as it gives extra fame + reputation. "In need" is bad for Round #1, imho.
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David desJardins
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The problem with Heroic Tale is that it only generates Influence 3, with no white mana in the Source. And he didn't even know he would draw Promise. Taking the card that ensures he can recruit the Swordsmen now makes sense to me. I agree that in general Heroic Tale is better.

Another approach would have been to play Stamina and Swiftness for movement, and both Rage to attack, leaving the gold die untouched in the Source. That would guarantee that he could take Heroic Tale and power it to recruit the Swordsmen. But it's too late for that after attacking the tower and seeing the Source roll.
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Jeff Collins
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I have to say that i too have struggled to improve at this game. I have enjoyed reading others' thoughts and will continue to follow along. Good luck as "we" continue this adventure.

Edit: typo
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José S
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DaviddesJ wrote:
Cancuino wrote:
This round should be pretty straight forward, playing In Need and promise to get the Utem Swordsmen.


I can't read your cards, so I don't know if you have the Lost Legion version or the original version of In Need. But it gives Influence 8 or 9 by itself, and you only need 6 to hire the Swordsmen. The extra Influence is going to be wasted, anyway.

I guess you could play the basic version of In Need in order to not touch the green die in the Source. But that seems too conservative to me.



Hi David, I'm not playing Lost Legion, I couldn't find it available on Vassal.

 
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José S
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I played In Need and Promise to get the Utem Swordsmen, draw two more cards and... lucky me, I got Tranquility.

The dummy player draws 3 more cards.





The next question is, should I use my ability token to get a green mana token or not?.
If I was playing by myself I would save it for later but wanted to hear from you.


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Ben Kyo
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The dummy is playing slow, and you have plenty of time.
Tranquility for heal 2, done. Next turn move to the ruin, saving a green mana die. So maybe just march and a card sideways.
The only thing left to do this turn is get the best hand possible for the ruins, so I wouldn't rush it by using improvise to get to the ruins.
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José S
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I used Tranquility powered by the green die to heal two wounds. Draw 3 new cards. And the green die turns into black.

The dummy player draws 5 cards this turn. He has 5 cards left on his deck.







What I would do is to use my ability token and Crystalize to get two crystals, one green and another one blue. Then March and Stamina to get to the ruins and draw 3 new cards for the next turn. Do you think it's a good move?.
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David desJardins
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Cancuino wrote:
What I would do is to use my ability token and Crystalize to get two crystals, one green and another one blue.


There's no point in that because you can take the green token whenever you want, so just leaving the skill unplaced is as good as generating a crystal.

I think you should play March and Stamina to move to the ruins, and Crystallize a die from the Source. I'd probably pick green (expecting to use the red die next turn).
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Jorge
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DaviddesJ wrote:
I think you should play March and Stamina to move to the ruins, and Crystallize a die from the Source. I'd probably pick green (expecting to use the red die next turn).
I'd use Improvisation with Stamina (he can keep the March later, as he can generate a green mana) and Crystalize a red mana die -- to keep the green one. Next turn take the ruin and move away.
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David desJardins
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Picon wrote:
I'd use Improvisation with Stamina (he can keep the March later, as he can generate a green mana) and Crystalize a red mana die -- to keep the green one. Next turn take the ruin and move away.


Well, it's going to be embarrassing if you needed Improvisation to defeat the ruins.
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