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Arkham Horror» Forums » Variants

Subject: Advice needed on shortening the game rss

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sam faraci
Australia
melbourne
victoria
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I've just played my first game of arkham horror and love it but was unable to finish my game due to having to pack it up for dinner time as instructed by the boss (wife). I was thinking next time i might play it by halving the doom track of the goo, halving the terror track and having the shops close at 3,4, and 5 and halving the amount of gates that need to be closed.
I understand that this may unbalance the game and was wanting some advice on what else would be needed to be done to make the play of this half game as balanced as possible for those times when you dont have the time to play a full game.
 
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Francisco Gutierrez
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Burbank
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How long is a "half game?" When I first started playing it took easily 4 hours to get through a game. Back in high school, when I played this constantly with a friend, we finished games in about two hours...

Other than saying "play more so you get faster", I'd think a short GOO (Yig has the shortest doom track) would be your best bet.

Doing things to speed up your play would help, FFG put out an app ages ago that let you quickly draw encounter cards without having to handle the decks.
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Wolfie
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Here you go:
https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/176240/speed-game-without-l...
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Wilbur Whateley
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cutter3377 wrote:
I've just played my first game of arkham horror and love it but was unable to finish my game due to having to pack it up for dinner time as instructed by the boss (wife).


Well here's some advice of a different kind

Stop Calling Your Wife 'The Boss'
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Fabio Binder
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Curitiba
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Have you tried Elder Sign + Gates of Arkham Expansion? If you don't have time, it is a possibility, usually 60-90 minutes is enough. Anyways this is what I do when I don't have enough time to play Arkham, my favorite game.
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sam faraci
Australia
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victoria
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THanks for the advice guys , i tried some of your suggestions whilst playing another game of Arkham in which i won but it still took about 4 hours or so . The only way i could finish it was over 2 days in which that night we had dinner in the lounge room so i could leave the game unpacked for the next day. I really do love this game but it would be a lot better if it could be played in a shorter time.
 
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Dennis
Germany
Berlin
Berlin
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Halving the Doom Track makes the game a lot harder, as usually the first half fills up rather quickly (almost 1 doom counter per round), before it slows down due to monster surges and sealed locations.
I'd be wary of shaving off too much there...
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sam faraci
Australia
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Very true Dennis , the first half fills up a lot quicker and slows down as you seal gates and there are multiple gates on the board. There must be a way to shorten the game though that keeps the balance as is but makes for a shorter game.
 
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Daily Grind
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I've thought about how to shorten the game myself and I've never really come up with a satisfying answer. I think the only real/balanced way to shorten the game would be to remove assets from them game.

Lower the doom track, but to balance that, you chould 'close down' some red diamond locations and remove all mythos cards related to those areas. And then of course you will need to adjust the monster limit, monster surge & gate limit numbers... it's probably a lot of work and play testing and just isn't worth it.

And if you play tested a shorter variant enough to feel good about it, I expect you'll find you're playing it faster anyway. The spouse and I knocked out a game (4 investigators) in 2 hours this weekend, because we don't need to reference the rules anymore.
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Wolfie
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Just a few things that help:

1. Once you really know the rules well it speeds the game considerably. If you can get to the point you don't need to look up rules, you'll shave off an hour or two right there.

2. Don't play Ancient One battle at the end. If the AO comes through, just count as a loss and move on.

3. Be careful about adding expansions. The more expansions, typically the longer the game. Rule of thumb is a max of one large and one small, but base game will always be faster by itself.

4. Prep beforehand if you have space - I always try to have everything set up before players arrive so we can just sit down and start.

5. Great if you have an extra room or table where you can keep a game going in the background. Play a few turns at a time then come back later.

Good luck!

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Benj Davis
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Summer Hill
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You could speed the game up a lot if you make closing a gate also seal it.
Naturally, that makes it much easier, but I think that would be a very simple and effective method.
 
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Joshua K.
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It really helps greatly if someone runs the Mythos phase, in addition to corralling the other players through all the phases as quickly as possible.

I've finished a 3 player game in under an hour once including setup. (via an all gate closed victory, not sealed of course)

It just takes someone that is knowledgeable about the game stepping through the phases at a diligent pace. Most phases are actually really quick if you think about it. Upkeep (decisions) + Movement (more decisions) + Combat (taking time) is usually where you can get bogged down. Encounters and Mythos cards are a pretty quick set routines. I strongly recommend using the smart phone app for encounter cards if you really want the speed! No shuffling required as the app takes care of it for you. Search for Arkham Companion.

Ironically Eldritch Horror games tend to last much longer now because of the action allowance.
 
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