Recommend
6 
 Thumb up
 Hide
13 Posts

Dungeon Dice» Forums » Variants

Subject: A Variant for Two Players rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Tylor Lilley
United States
Columbus
Ohio
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Dungeon Dice is a fun and balanced game with three or more players. When one player starts to pull ahead, the remaining players can work together to catch up or slow down the person in first. I can't remember a game of Dungeon Dice that didn't end with several people all closing in on their final fame at once.

Unfortunately, we don't always have three or more players. A lot of the time, we only have us two. And in two players, the game is far less balanced, as when one player starts to pull ahead, there's no incentive for them to help the remaining player, and no one else the remaining player can turn to for help. This usually means there is a pretty bad runaway leader problem with two player dungeon dice, where once one player is ahead, they only become more ahead, and the game can be decided well before it is over, which isn't much fun for anyone.

I came up with this variant to an idea to try to alleviate this problem, so we can still play this fun game with two players, but without the runaway leader problems we often experience. I took a queue from Alhambra and decided to implement a mechanic that works as a fake third player who either player can turn to for help, in addition to still being able to fight things on their own, or fight together.

The way it works is as follows:

When a player is choosing assistants before combat, they may choose the third "shadow" player as their assistant. Once they choose this, it is too late to go back. They will have to accept the shadow player as their assistant, and they will have to agree to whatever terms the shadow player demands in response for its help.

When a player chooses the shadow player as their assistant, they will roll one monster level die to randomly select which of the six possible assistants they will receive. Each assistant rolls a number of hero level dice, along with some mix of equipment, artifact, potion, and spell dice. The dice it rolls are taken from the main supply and from the reward bags at random. The active player gets to choose whether and how all abilities are used by the shadow player. All dice rolled by the shadow player are returned to their respective reward bags after the combat is finished. Each assistant also demands certain things in response for their help. The list of random results are written below, with a set of helpful reference cards I've made that displays the same information in picture form as well.

Edit: You can download either sets of these cards and print them out in the files section here, if your interested: https://boardgamegeek.com/filepage/146924/two-player-variant...



1 - Pitiful Perry
Rolls: 1 Hero Level Die, 1 Equipment Die
Demands: Nothing!

2 - Helpful Harry
Rolls: 1 Hero Level Die, 2 Equipment Die
Demands: Any extra potions received from rolling a 6 on monster level dice.

3 - Gamblin' Gary
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 2 Equipment Dice
Demands: A Roll-Off. On a 1-3, Gamblin' Gary gets nothing. On a 4-6, they get everything!

4 - Lovely Larry
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 1 Equipment Die, 3 One-use Dice
Demands: Any extra potions received from rolling a 6 on monster level dice. Also, you must give him one one-use dice from your personal
stash after combat is over if you have at least one!

5 - Boastful Barry
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 1 Artifact Die, 2 Spell Dice
Demands: The Trophy, if there is one that will be worth fame to him. Otherwise, he demands all the rewards! (You always still get experience if successful)

6 - Maniacal Mary
Rolls: 3 Hero Level Dice, 2 Equipment Dice, 1 Artifact Die
Demands: All the rewards! (You always still get experience if successful)

And, based on feedback, I have created a version that allows you to roll 2 dice and receive a random player from a pool of 11, for a bit more variety in helpers! They are as follows:




2 - Entitled Ed
Rolls: 1 Hero Level Die, 1 One-use Die
Demands: All the rewards! You always still get experience if successful.)

3 - Pitiful Pam
Rolls: 1 Hero Level Die, 1 Equipment Die
Demands: Nothing!

4 - Helpful Howie
Rolls: 1 Hero Level Dice, 2 Equipment Dice
Demands: Any extra potions received from rolling a 6 on monster level dice.

5 - Gamblin' Gary
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 2 Equipment Dice
Demands: A Roll-Off. On a 1-3, Gamblin' Gary gets nothing. On a 4-6, they get everything!

6 - Lovely Lucy
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 1 Equipment Die, 3 One-use Dice
Demands: Any extra potions received from rolling a 6 on monster level dice. Also, you must give her a one-use die from your personal
stash after combat is over if you have at least one!

7 - Standard Stan
Rolls:2 Hero Level Dice, 2 Equipment Dice, 1 One-use Die
Demands: You must either give him the trophy, or one equipment dice of your choosing.

8 - Boastful Bob
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 1 Equipment Die, 1 Artifact Die
Demands: The Trophy, if there is one that will be worth fame to him. Otherwise, he demands all the rewards! (You always still get experience if successful.)

9 - Packrat Paul
Rolls: 3 Hero Level Dice, 3 Equipment Dice
Demands: All the rewards! Also, you must give him an equipment die from your personal stash after combat is over if you have at least one! (You always still get experience if successful.)

10 - Magical Mike
Rolls: 3 Hero Level Dice, 1 Artifact Die, 2 Spell Dice
Demands: You must give him two dice that re any combination of the following: a one-use die, an equipment die, a familiar die, a class die.

11 - Saintly Sam
Rolls: 3 Hero Level Die, 2 Equipment Dice, 1 Artifact Die
Demands: Nothing!

12 - Maniacal Mary
Rolls: 4 Hero Level Dice, 2 Artifact Dice
Demands: All the rewards! (You always still get experience if successful.)

Any rewards they receive are simply not taken by the active player.

I feel this will help fix the runaway leader problem, because it will both give the player in the lead some incentive to give reasonable deals to the other player, and if they do not, the other player can always try their luck with one of the random assistants.

This is the first draft for this idea so a few things may need to be tweaked, but if anyone else tries it out or has any comments on the idea, I'd love to here about them!

Thanks for reading!
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A Frag
United States
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Very intriguing Tyler - I would maybe extend it to 2 dice, so you have some results (I.e. The 7) which will occur more frequently than others. That way you can put the crazy ones at 2 and 12 so they occur less often and have more of a grade of helpers... just one thought, but I like it!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jeremy Olivier
United States
Oregon
flag msg tools
Thank you for putting this together, it looks awesome so far! Can't wait to test it out tonight!

Just for clarification, on #3 Gamblin' Gary, the card itself shows that he rolls 2 Hero Level dice and 2 Equipment dice, but your post says only 1 Equipment die. I'm just curious, which one is it supposed to be?

tylorlilley wrote:

3 - Gamblin' Gary
Rolls: 2 Hero Level Dice, 1 Equipment Die
Demands: A Roll-Off. On a 1-3, Gamblin' Gary gets nothing. On a 4-6, they get everything!



I'm also still enjoying the Spell and Class reference cards you made, thank you for all the hard work you've been putting in!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tylor Lilley
United States
Columbus
Ohio
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just a quick update, I tried it out for one game tonight and my partner loved it! There might still be some balancing tweaks or changes that need made, but I think the idea itself is a solid one and I will be pursuing it further!

afrag wrote:
Very intriguing Tyler - I would maybe extend it to 2 dice, so you have some results (I.e. The 7) which will occur more frequently than others. That way you can put the crazy ones at 2 and 12 so they occur less often and have more of a grade of helpers... just one thought, but I like it!


Oh, I kind of like that idea! I may very well just try that out. Thanks for the suggestion!

ThatOneDude wrote:
Thank you for putting this together, it looks awesome so far! Can't wait to test it out tonight!

Just for clarification, on #3 Gamblin' Gary, the card itself shows that he rolls 2 Hero Level dice and 2 Equipment dice, but your post says only 1 Equipment die. I'm just curious, which one is it supposed to be?



I'm also still enjoying the Spell and Class reference cards you made, thank you for all the hard work you've been putting in! [/q]

I'm glad you're enjoying everything! I just love this game a lot and the final kickstarter has got me buzzing about it lately.

Also, thanks for pointing out the typo; the graphic is correct! I will fix that now.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Donn Hardy
United States
South Euclid
Ohio
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
My only observation is that it seems that the majority of your shadow players are very greedy. It might be nice if there were more that were similar to "roll off for each reward" or the like. Real players that demand all the good stuff every time they assist aren't much fun, so I would assume that the same is true of phantom players.

EDIT: I lied. Another observation. Your players seem to ask for more the stronger they are, but I've played with weak players that are greedy, and strong players that are willing to help the little guy out. Maybe randomize that aspect a bit more, since the one you get is random anyway?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A Frag
United States
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
donnbobhardy wrote:
My only observation is that it seems that the majority of your shadow players are very greedy. It might be nice if there were more that were similar to "roll off for each reward" or the like. Real players that demand all the good stuff every time they assist aren't much fun, so I would assume that the same is true of phantom players.

EDIT: I lied. Another observation. Your players seem to ask for more the stronger they are, but I've played with weak players that are greedy, and strong players that are willing to help the little guy out. Maybe randomize that aspect a bit more, since the one you get is random anyway?


I think another 5 options you would get by rolling two dice could help in this regard. The 6,7 & 8 could be avg. players one generous, one greedy and one fair... use the extremes for extremely generous and extremely greedy... again just spit balling here.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Peter Funk
United States
Utah
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
This changes everything. Thanks! This may be something to think about for the solo players too.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gilles Monchoux
msg tools
I play 2 players all the time, and it works well the majority of times.
Generally speaking, I don't like 2 players variant that involves a simulated third player. This said, sometimes it works wonderful (i.e. Tokaido)
This variant looks quite complicated. When it's not official, I'm all for simplicity. I may appreciate a rule involving a weak and greedy assistant (i.e. Same hero level, no equipment, take monster reward). But having to roll what the assistant is and what it want feel messy.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tylor Lilley
United States
Columbus
Ohio
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Maskounet wrote:
I play 2 players all the time, and it works well the majority of times.
Generally speaking, I don't like 2 players variant that involves a simulated third player. This said, sometimes it works wonderful (i.e. Tokaido)
This variant looks quite complicated. When it's not official, I'm all for simplicity. I may appreciate a rule involving a weak and greedy assistant (i.e. Same hero level, no equipment, take monster reward). But having to roll what the assistant is and what it want feel messy.


In play it's not complicated at all. You simply choose whether you want to use the third player as your assistant, and if you do, you roll the dice to see what dice they will use and what rewards they will get instead of you. It COULD be simpler if you wanted it to be, but I don't think it's complicated by any means!

Tokaido and Alhambra were the inspirations for this idea.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Tylor Lilley
United States
Columbus
Ohio
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
afrag wrote:
donnbobhardy wrote:
My only observation is that it seems that the majority of your shadow players are very greedy. It might be nice if there were more that were similar to "roll off for each reward" or the like. Real players that demand all the good stuff every time they assist aren't much fun, so I would assume that the same is true of phantom players.

EDIT: I lied. Another observation. Your players seem to ask for more the stronger they are, but I've played with weak players that are greedy, and strong players that are willing to help the little guy out. Maybe randomize that aspect a bit more, since the one you get is random anyway?


I think another 5 options you would get by rolling two dice could help in this regard. The 6,7 & 8 could be avg. players one generous, one greedy and one fair... use the extremes for extremely generous and extremely greedy... again just spit balling here.


Yes, I had a similar idea combining yours and Donn's feedback, I will post a revised version 2 shortly that uses 11 different players by having you roll two dice.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gilles Monchoux
msg tools
tylorlilley wrote:
In play it's not complicated at all.

I'm not saying it's complicated to play. I'm saying it's complicated to design and balance.
If the designed assistant are too interesting, it favors whoever use it. If it's not interesting enough, nobody will use it. Finding the right balance sounds challenging.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Terry Fro
msg tools
Tylor - Thank you for putting this together. It is a great addition to the game when playing 2 players.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
A Frag
United States
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Tyler, I like it. I am curious what Potluck is going to come up,with, with their official solo mode...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.