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Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition)» Forums » General

Subject: So.... The dreaded X rss

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Richard Cross
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Hello all

I have just played the first quest of Heirs of Blood. First off what a great introduction to the world of descent.

Whenever the X was rolled I felt like it foiled the plans for a turn. Sometimes it was the difference between a knocked out hero or not.

I also love Imperial assault and I think the X on the defence is a better mechanic.

Anyway cutting to the chase I was thinking if a house rule could be introduced.

The X still applies to any ranged attacks.

However any melee combat simply uses the 2 side of the blue dice but subtracting a surge instead of adding one.

Of course this is only one suggestion but it adds a little further strategy into the game.
 
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Keith Little
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First it's a house rule so you can certainly implement it! I'm a big believer in playing a game the way that makes me happy and if all parties playing agree to it... it's a great rule!

Second, I personally think the X is ok. I might make it something innocuous like a blank. That way there is still a chance for "failure" but not so bad that it knocks out the entire attack.

Anyway, my 2c
 
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Vayda
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My 2 cents:
Keep the X as intended.

It mitigates damage on BOTH sides, not just the heroes.
Math says 1 in 6 attacks fail. Usually the Heroes have 4 a round, but the OL typically had many more attacks to roll.

It also makes powers and items that effect "any" dice or "attack" dice (not "power" dice) really important and fun. Removing the X hurts these cards.



I will admit it can suck, especially on a heroic feat. Which is why I strongly suggest getting at least one lieutenant pack and use the plot deck. The tokens can be used by the heroes for good to help offset the bad X luck.

Aside:
Once our Healer rolled six Xs in a row. 6. She almost cried.
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JH
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Yep, keep the X. The attack/defense balance between the two games isn't the same. Rebels can restore health with rest actions; Descent heroes can't. The black defense die in IA is better than the gray defense die most Descent heroes start with. That 1/6 chance to miss applies to every monster attack, and monsters attack a LOT.

It sucks to blow a roll, but heroes and Overlord both have options for rerolling dice, depending on what heroes/classes you're using. If it's a problem for you to roll Xs, plan accordingly.
 
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Mlai00 Mlai00
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I don't have IA. I'm just reasoning through whether or not X on the defense dice is really the better idea...

X on blue attack die:
1. 1/6 chance every attack would whiff.
2. As the attacker, you can do something about this if you have a re-roll ability, since it is still your turn and your roll.
3. More variation in defense dice faces.

X on defense die:
1. 1/6 chance every defense roll can completely negate an attack.
2. The attacker cannot do anything about this, because it's not his dice roll. Re-rolls suddenly become underpowered for the attacker as a game mechanic.
3. The defender can use a re-roll to turn his chance to completely negate the attacker to 1/3! 33.3% chance the attack is rendered useless, no matter how powerful it was! Re-rolls suddenly become overpowered for the defender as a game mechanic.
4. More variation in attack dice faces.
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Chris
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Mlai00 wrote:
The defender can use a re-roll to turn his chance to completely negate the attacker to 1/3!

I think it is actually 11/36, but I agree with your points - I find it more interesting to have the attacker manage the automatic miss than the defender.
 
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Sean Houston
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cbrua wrote:
Mlai00 wrote:
The defender can use a re-roll to turn his chance to completely negate the attacker to 1/3!

I think it is actually 11/36, but I agree with your points - I find it more interesting to have the attacker manage the automatic miss than the defender.


Not exactly, it's actually just 1/6, followed by another 1/6. It's a reroll, not two dice rolled simultaneously.
 
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Paul
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SeanLuc wrote:
cbrua wrote:
Mlai00 wrote:
The defender can use a re-roll to turn his chance to completely negate the attacker to 1/3!

I think it is actually 11/36, but I agree with your points - I find it more interesting to have the attacker manage the automatic miss than the defender.


Not exactly, it's actually just 1/6, followed by another 1/6. It's a reroll, not two dice rolled simultaneously.


They aren't rolled simultaneously, but they are not independent events (the outcome is dependent of the result of BOTH rolls. In order to not dodge, you have to not dodge on the first roll AND not dodge on the second roll. That's a compound event.)
For two rolls of a dice with one dodge (1) and 5 no-dodge (0) sides,

[0 0 0 0 0 1],

you can build a 6x6 matrix of outcomes by summing the vectors. Each element of the matrix is the sum of the result of the first roll (top bolded row) and the result of the second roll (left bolded column):

+0 0 0 0 0 1
0 0 0 0 0 0 1
0 0 0 0 0 0 1
0 0 0 0 0 0 1
0 0 0 0 0 0 1
0 0 0 0 0 0 1
1 1 1 1 1 1 2

The unbolded number is the total number of dodges rolled. The number of outcomes with at least 1 dodge is 11, 36 outcomes total. 11/36 chance of dodging (with a reroll).

A faster way to calculate this would be to calculate the chance of NOT dodging twice in a row, (5/6)*(5/6) = 25/36. Since probability of dodging + probability of NOT dodging = 1, then 1-(25/36)=probability of dodging, or (11/36).

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Mlai00 Mlai00
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I've forgotten most of my probability, so what is 1/6 + 1/6 then? What does that represent, I mean?
 
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Paul
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Mlai00 wrote:
I've forgotten most of my probability, so what is 1/6 + 1/6 then? What does that represent, I mean?


Say you were attacking an enemy 4 spaces away. There are multiple range results on a single roll that will get you what you need. You might roll the side of the blue with the 4 range (1/6) OR the side with the 5 range (1/6), OR the side with the 6 range (1/6). Your chances of rolling sufficient range are (1/6)+(1/6)+(1/6)= (1/2).

A good way to remember that addition is not used for compounding events is to remember that there are no probabilities greater than 1. If a (1/2) chance of heads on a coin toss meant flipping 2 coins was solved by (1/2)+(1/2)= (2/2) you'd be in trouble, because what would happen if you flipped 3 coins? Do you have a 3/2 chance of at least 1 landing heads? No, you have a (1/2)^3 = 1/8 chance of all tails, so a 7/8 chance of one or more heads.
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Christopher Lomas
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Remember that in Imperial Assault only very specific characters get a white dice. When it comes to enemy figures that pool is absolutely tiny.

That means that it's more likely that the heroes will get missed and very unlikely that the heroes will miss.

Somehow the miss in Descent feels so much more random and so much more annoying than a dodge in IA. I'm not even sure why. But houseruling it out isn't a great plan since it invalidates many cards and abilities.
 
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Dean L
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Coventry
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Two things to note in IA is that:
Not all defences rolls include a white die, whereas practically all attack rolls in Descent include the blue die.
There are an increasing number of effects in IA that can force a defender to re-roll a die. We are also starting to see more effects that negate the dodge. Far sooner than we saw anything the miss in Descent. Despite the theoretical possibility, very few abilities allowed a reroll of the blue die.
 
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