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Shadows of Brimstone: City of the Ancients» Forums » Rules

Subject: Gambler broken? rss

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Chris Szymanski
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Oklahoma
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Does anyone else out there have much experience with the Gambler? In my group we have someone playing the Gambler and they seem to be incredibly overpowered compared to the rest of the characters and appear break the game a lot too. We just hit level 4 and it has been this way pretty much from the start. I have read the FAQ and not much of it covers the gambler and almost nothing specifically excludes grit from being used on, allowing him to use his tricks on almost any roll. Here's a few examples of how our Gambler plays.

Our gambler never runs out of fortune tokens. He went down the Roll the Bones tree for upgrades, so between gaining D3 fortune tokens for catch your breath, On a Roll(recovers 1 fortune token when you kill an enemy), Blow for Luck (can exchange grit for fortune), and Side Bet starting card(recover 1 fortune on 3 of a kind during a skill test, but lose d3 fortune on 3 1's), he is constantly generating fortune.

He maxed out his Luck at 6 early on and has the Tip the Scales trick(Use 1 Fortune to choose any single die just rolled, and make a Luck 5+ test. For each 5+ rolled you may add or subtract 1 from the chosen die roll. May not target die excluded specifically from grit). With this and the Box Cars(Any time you roll a 6 for Willpower, Defense, or skill test you may change any other single die to a 6) skill tree upgrade he can pretty much modify any single die to any result he wants to.

So with Tip the Scales, any time we had an encounter with a peril die worth of enemies he would do his roll and change the result down to a 3 so that our fights were always the easiest they could be. Same thing with elite abilities rolled for enemies. If we got some bad ones he'd just change them to something easy. And since encounter reveals happen at the end of the turn he could then go and use Tip the Scales again on a failed defense roll or whatever else once the fight started. So most encounters went like this: minimal amount of enemies from the peril die roll modification or easy elite abilities, enemies get one swipe on us if they're lucky and if they happen to hit hard a failed defense roll gets modified to mitigate that, then we proceed to wipe out the enemies before they get to go again. Yes, this can only be done once a turn, but that's about all that is needed to make things really easy.

He also has Fortune's Favor trick(Use 1 fortune token to reroll any single die just rolled, even if it has already been rerolled, may not target die specifically excluded from grit). So between tip the scales and fortunes favor pretty much any die can be modified and usually get the best result, along with being able to use our regular grit.

This has made the game incredibly easy most of the time with very little risk on our adventures and is almost not fun to play with him most of the time. Has anyone else run into this?
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Brian M
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I am not up on all the FAQs, but aren't things like rolling for how many enemies you meet and what elite abilities they have "excluded specifically from grit"?
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Morgan Vening
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I'm not that familiar with the Gambler (not having seen it play yet), but the main problem appears to be the Luck 6. He started at 3, and you need 11's on the Advancement chart to modify that. Unless he got incredibly lucky (either through that or equipment), that's no different to the Bandido I had (with Init 5, 7 Combat, Crits on 5+, Peril for damage), completely dominating games. Sometimes lucky combos are broken.

Also, I think FFP made a huge mistake with the FAQ by not putting a more general restriction on it. I wouldn't allow Grit to be used for Peril Dice for monsters or Elite Upgrades. Yes, this is technically permissable by the FAQ, but it just rings as bad. Personally, I can't think of a roll that a character isn't directly responsible for, and definitely one that isn't rolled on their behalf, to be rerolled.

Heck, even the reading of the FAQ seems to say it isn't.
"What can’t Grit be used to Re-roll?
A Hero may use a Grit to Re-roll any number of dice that the Hero just rolled.". Hero, not player. Honestly, I disagree completely with even having the <Dice not rolled by a Hero> section. Anyone want to point out one that SHOULD be Grittable?

Others might have different opinions, but I simply wouldn't be playing it the way you have.
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Chris Szymanski
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I believe one of the starting cards or upgrades gave him +1 luck, then he bought or acquired an item that had +1 luck and did something else to get another +1 luck. He's been at 6 luck since very early on, so the games have been very broken with him playing. The main problem with the gambler cards is they state that they can't be used on rolls specifically excluded from using grit. Almost nothing in the game is specifically excluded from grit. If you take a look at some of the charts they say "grit may not be used", but very little things have this statement, so it opens up rerolls and dice modification for the gambler to almost anything.
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Chris Szymanski
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StormKnight wrote:
I am not up on all the FAQs, but aren't things like rolling for how many enemies you meet and what elite abilities they have "excluded specifically from grit"?

Here's the section on grit. I guess we never considered those rolls chart rolls, maybe that's the issue. It would help if they were a little more specific on what the gambler can all modify so we don't make this mistake.

A Hero may NOT use Grit to Re-roll any roll made on a
Chart (Travel Hazard, Town Location Event, Injury, Mutation,
Level Up Bonus, Charts on Encounter Cards, etc). This is a
major restriction and can make the game far more challenging
for the Heroes.
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Jee Fu
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StormKnight wrote:
I am not up on all the FAQs, but aren't things like rolling for how many enemies you meet and what elite abilities they have "excluded specifically from grit"?
StormKnight is correct. There is a butt-ton of stuff that the Gambler is technically not allowed to mess with. I will admit that said list is a little muddy, due to the FAQ's incomplete and confusing handling of the Gambler errata. But rolls made by the Game - how many Enemies, who Enemies Attacks, initial rolls on Charts of any kind (save for Gambler's Luck, which can target initial Chart rolls with certain restrictions - see FAQ), rolls made on behalf of the Adventure/Mission, rolls to see whether or not Enemies are in the room due to Encounter - certainly cannot be changed by Gambler Tricks (they can however be changed by non-Tricks that use wording "any die").

The current ambiguity is whether or not Gambler's Tricks (or maybe just Gambler's Luck itself, since it's special) can change dice rolled by Enemies (To-Hit/Damage). The FAQ says that Charts are now specifically called out as ungrittable, and all the Tricks say you can't use them on unGrittable stuff. Enemy rolls have never been Grittable, but it says right in the Gambler Rules that Tricks are intended to be able to affect them.

At the moment I'm operating under this ruling: if the roll could be gritted by the party that made it, then Gambler Tricks can affect it. For instance, if an Enemy had Grit and the ability to use grit it could use it to re-roll its To-Hit/Damage just like a Hero could (but not its random Target - that's made by the Game, not the Enemy), so Tricks can affect those dice.

So this covers all grittable rolls made by all Heroes and Enemies, while leaving out the meta-rolls. This brings the Gambler under control balance-wise, but doesn't break his Posse-utility or theme.

Gambler's Luck has special status, and the FAQ clarifies what this as meaning as "can be used on Chart Rolls (subject to the limitations described in the FAQ about changing rolls on a Chart)".

- Jee
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Njorl
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Specifically for the Gambler there are guidlines for this ability.

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Jee Fu
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njep wrote:
Specifically for the Gambler there are guidlines for this ability.
Right. The problem is that this is implying that "things specifically called out as being excluded from using grit on" and "things that the rules say you can't use grit on" are different things. This is straight-up madness. There should be two categories: 1) things you can grit and 2) things you cant. There shouldn't be a 3) things that you really can't, unless some errata totally says you can in which case it becomes a regular can't, unless it doesn't.

I'm sure Jason will get around to clearing this up at some point. Until then, I'm sticking with the ruling in my previous post.

- Jee
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Craig Steinhoff
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I believe the FAQ has a list of actions that "Grit" cannot be used to force a reroll. Look at page 2....this should limit the actions I would think

http://www.flyingfrog.net/FAQ_Docs/SOBS_FAQ_6-22-2017_Web.pd...
 
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Chad Tracy
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Is there a final list of "this is what the Gambler can affect"?
 
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Maurice Oksman
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Inspector Jee wrote:
njep wrote:
Specifically for the Gambler there are guidlines for this ability.
Right. The problem is that this is implying that "things specifically called out as being excluded from using grit on" and "things that the rules say you can't use grit on" are different things. This is straight-up madness. There should be two categories: 1) things you can grit and 2) things you cant. There shouldn't be a 3) things that you really can't, unless some errata totally says you can in which case it becomes a regular can't, unless it doesn't.

I'm sure Jason will get around to clearing this up at some point. Until then, I'm sticking with the ruling in my previous post.

- Jee



Finally playing a gambler and understanding how bad the ambiguity is...The problem is exactly what Jee says in terms of a weird 3rd category. There is so much seemingly conflicting information.
1. The Basic Grit explanation in the rulebook
2. The FAQ changes to Grit
3. The FAQ changes to the Gambler
4. The subtext on the Gambler’s Fortune’s Favor.
5. The explanation of the Gambler on his pamphlet.
6. The FAQ exceptions to Grit on Charts (ie, Death—or healing Injury, Mutation, Madness, Curse, Parasite).

The FAQ (pg.2) breaks down 2 categories what Grit CANNOT be used:
A. Dice not Rolled by a Hero
B. Grit Restricted Rolls

Based on what I’m assuming is the intention of the Gambler and everything I’ve read, I’m playing Fortune’s Favor/Tip the Scales/etc.. eligible rolls are ok for category A above, but not B or any card that specifically uses the word ‘Restricted’ when referring to Grit.

Finally, it is also eligible to use Fortune Tokens on charts that would cause outright death (and everything else I mentioned in #6 above).

*Edit*=The only other thing I’d like to add as that there seems to be no limit (like sermons) to a single gambling trick to only once per turn. If I had to choose a single change at this moment, I think that’d be the easiest one to implement.
 
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Njorl
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Double check the rule page for the gambler or the faq, I am almost certain that the rule is stated that you can only use a trick once per turn. It might be on the rules card, the gambler page, or the faq.
 
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Maurice Oksman
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njep wrote:
Double check the rule page for the gambler or the faq, I am almost certain that the rule is stated that you can only use a trick once per turn. It might be on the rules card, the gambler page, or the faq.

Oh—you’re totally right, I’m not used to looking at the backside of the smaller of the 2 character inserts because they’re usually blank—but the gambler’s is NOT.

They are limited 1/turn like a Sermon. I expected as much, I was just suprised not to find it. Thank you!
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Njorl
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I'm just glad I haven't been playing it wrong!

The most powerful combination I've found is where I had an Orphan and Gambler in the same group. This enabled the Orphan to finish his personal quest in two missions.
 
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Kyle Doncaster
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njep wrote:
Specifically for the Gambler there are guidlines for this ability.


Where is this text lifted from?

I can't find it anywhere(!).
 
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Njorl
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This is on the hero rules sheet with the Gambler.
 
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Kyle Doncaster
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This is all that mine says?

And on the back is just the skill tree.
 
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Kyle Doncaster
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Just found it on that smaller sheet after having a good rummage around. Big thanks!
 
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