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Subject: Looking for similar to Talisman, but shorter play time rss

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Nick Hayes
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My favorite game is Talisman. I know, I know, it's old and dated, but I love this game and it just clicks along on all cylinders for me. However, it is hard to get to the table due to its long play time. Are there any recommendations for a game with a similar feel, but that is significantly shorter? I'm not looking for a Talisman replacement, as I just don't see it getting dethroned from my #1 any time soon, but I would love to have something that can be played more often. I'd love to have something around the same difficulty level, and since I don't have a very regular game group that meets a lot, I'm not really interested in any campaign style games, at this point. Thanks for your thoughts!
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Byron Campbell
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You really need to look into Gloom of Kilforth: A Fantasy Quest Game. When i played it, my first thought was "Hey, this is like what Talisman should have been."
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'Bernard Wingrave'
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What specific things are must-haves for the game? Talisman has a bunch of different things going on:
Building up a character
Character vs. character combat
getting stuff
fighting monsters
different regions of the board with special spots
completing one final challenge to win

If some of the above are required (but not all) then people may be able to direct you to specific games.
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'Bernard Wingrave'
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Relic and Prophecy are both somewhat similar to Talisman. Relic and Prophecy are listed at 180 minutes each on BGG, so that is a bit shorter than what Talisman is listed at. Both Relic and Prophecy have variants in the forums to reduce play time further.
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Swain Voorman
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There are also some good variants posted in the Talisman forums about tweaks to reduce length of play. I've incorporated many of them with good success.
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kittenhoarder wrote:
You really need to look into Gloom of Kilforth: A Fantasy Quest Game. When i played it, my first thought was "Hey, this is like what Talisman should have been."

I have to disagree. I really wanted to like Kilforth, especially after reading all the glowing praise, but it didn't feel like a questing game at all to me, but rather a poor puzzle that's kinda just 50/50 if you find all the puzzle pieces before time runs out.
 
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Halborn wrote:
My favorite game is Talisman. . . . Thanks for your thoughts!

Try Runebound.
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Nick Hayes
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bwingrave wrote:
Relic and Prophecy are both somewhat similar to Talisman. Relic and Prophecy are listed at 180 minutes each on BGG, so that is a bit shorter than what Talisman is listed at. Both Relic and Prophecy have variants in the forums to reduce play time further.


I've seen Relic, but thought it was just Talisman with a WH40K skin on it. Is it different enough that it can have a space on the shelf alongside Talisman and its expansions?
 
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'Bernard Wingrave'
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Halborn wrote:
bwingrave wrote:
Relic and Prophecy are both somewhat similar to Talisman. Relic and Prophecy are listed at 180 minutes each on BGG, so that is a bit shorter than what Talisman is listed at. Both Relic and Prophecy have variants in the forums to reduce play time further.


I've seen Relic, but thought it was just Talisman with a WH40K skin on it. Is it different enough that it can have a space on the shelf alongside Talisman and its expansions?


I posted Relic as an option because I saw it had a shorter play time than the version of Talisman that I have played. In looking at one of the reviews for Relic, it appears to be pretty similar to 4th edition Talisman, so maybe it's not different enough.
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Martin Larouche
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bwingrave wrote:
Relic and Prophecy are both somewhat similar to Talisman. Relic and Prophecy are listed at 180 minutes each on BGG, so that is a bit shorter than what Talisman is listed at. Both Relic and Prophecy have variants in the forums to reduce play time further.


Came here to add those two... bit i don't agree with your playtimes.

Relic uses the Talisman system. It IS Talisman... in space. But some mechanics and it's higher emphasis on monster cards make it go much faster than Talisman. The basic scenario with the first one to reach the center wins takes us only an hour at 2 players. Other end games make the game longer though.

Prophecy, by famed designer Vlaada Chvatil, is an obvious clone of Talisman... without the roll and move.
I will always play Prophecy over Talisman... but the base game alone. The two expansions to Prophecy are not that interesting and just make the game go longer.

Then there's FFG's Runebound. It's a bit too serious feeling for my taste for the kind of game it is though.
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Mark Jackson
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DungeonQuest hits a lot of the same notes for me in a much much shorter time frame.
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Nick Hayes
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bwingrave wrote:
What specific things are must-haves for the game? Talisman has a bunch of different things going on:
Building up a character
Character vs. character combat
getting stuff
fighting monsters
different regions of the board with special spots
completing one final challenge to win

If some of the above are required (but not all) then people may be able to direct you to specific games.


I would say my favorite aspects are:
- It feels like somewhat of an RPG, but without all of the intense stats.
- I like the Character vs character, but especially the Take That, which comes in when you use The Reaper or The Werewolf.
- I like building toward an end goal, so that it's not just a race to victory points to win.

I would say those 3 are my favorite parts, but I love how a story can be woven around each experience. In many ways I feel like Talisman mimics a classic JRPG with random battles and different ways that the game, itself, interacts with the players; if that makes sense.
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Nick - That's quite a list. Your reasons for liking it are a bit different from mine. It just goes to show how good of a game Talisman is.
Halborn wrote:
- It feels like somewhat of an RPG, but without all of the intense stats.
thumbsup check
Halborn wrote:
- I like the Character vs character, but especially the Take That, which comes in when you use The Reaper or The Werewolf.
thumbsdown The PvP to steal an item is fine. I severely dislike the 16.7% chance to get totally hosed by the Reaper, getting Toaded, etc... If the roll a 11 and get hosed chance were on a higher sided die, I wouldn't mind so much.
Halborn wrote:
- I like building toward an end goal, so that it's not just a race to victory points to win.
thumbsup I even know people who just take an evening to play the build up game, to tell a story, rather than playing to win.
Halborn wrote:
I would say those 3 are my favorite parts, but I love how a story can be woven around each experience. In many ways I feel like Talisman mimics a classic JRPG with random battles and different ways that the game, itself, interacts with the players; if that makes sense.
JRPGs came after Talisman.

My reasons for liking Talisman come down to it's just a really fun romp with some ups and downs. Contrary to the elitist detractors, roll and move works for Talisman. In my mind, a good roll and move game is no different than roll for action selection games. Talisman is a great story game.
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'Bernard Wingrave'
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Halborn wrote:

I would say my favorite aspects are:
- It feels like somewhat of an RPG, but without all of the intense stats.
- I like the Character vs character, but especially the Take That, which comes in when you use The Reaper or The Werewolf.
- I like building toward an end goal, so that it's not just a race to victory points to win.

I would say those 3 are my favorite parts, but I love how a story can be woven around each experience. In many ways I feel like Talisman mimics a classic JRPG with random battles and different ways that the game, itself, interacts with the players; if that makes sense.


If you want a game that tells a story, and has the other elements you mention, I wonder if this is perhaps something that doesn't compress. Thinking about another older game (Civilization) there are still people looking for a shorter version that has all the good stuff of the original.
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Phillip Harpring
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Jim Henson's Labyrinth: The Board Game is very much Talisman-lite mechanically (roll a die, have a random encounter, repeat until you're able to take on the final trials), but it's fully cooperative so you may be disappointed by the lack of Take That. Also, if you haven't watched the movie enough to get the references, the storytelling aspect of it will be fairly lost on you.

Edit: I think the game for you actually may be Betrayal at Baldur's Gate. RPG archetypes, check. Backstabbing, check. Random encounters, check. And if you like Talisman, you won't be bothered by the potentially unbalanced scenarios players can end up in after the haunt gets triggered.
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Jack Reilly
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aingerso wrote:
There are also some good variants posted in the Talisman forums about tweaks to reduce length of play. I've incorporated many of them with good success.


This is the best answer. I play with only one house rule, advancement is equal to your Strength / Craft plus 1, but it's significantly shorted Talisman to an hour or so game.
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Speaking of simply shortening Talisman...

One mistake I see many many players make is to continue the buildup too long. I've won more than my fair share of Talisman games by being aggressive with advancing to the middle region, then the inner region. You really can get the game in under the 90 min mark by transitioning regions earlier.
 
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Tim Freerksen
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Jreilly89 wrote:
aingerso wrote:
There are also some good variants posted in the Talisman forums about tweaks to reduce length of play. I've incorporated many of them with good success.


This is the best answer. I play with only one house rule, advancement is equal to your Strength / Craft plus 1, but it's significantly shorted Talisman to an hour or so game.


I just cut out the Crown of Command spell garbage and have it just be a race to the crown. That knocks a good hour and a half at times even.
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Halborn wrote:
I would say my favorite aspects are:
- It feels like somewhat of an RPG, but without all of the intense stats.
- I like the Character vs character, but especially the Take That, which comes in when you use The Reaper or The Werewolf.
- I like building toward an end goal, so that it's not just a race to victory points to win.
That reminds me a bit of Arcadia Quest:
- it has some limited character advancement (mostly via items)
- it's PvP
- each scenario features different quests
- scenarios are linked into a campaign

What it doesn't have is the randomness (each scenario is using fixed monsters) and it's not roll to move, also each player represents a 'guild' of three characters and can choose between them whenever taking actions.
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Nick Hayes
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ampoliros wrote:
Nick - That's quite a list. Your reasons for liking it are a bit different from mine. It just goes to show how good of a game Talisman is.
Halborn wrote:
- I like the Character vs character, but especially the Take That, which comes in when you use The Reaper or The Werewolf.
thumbsdown The PvP to steal an item is fine. I severely dislike the 16.7% chance to get totally hosed by the Reaper, getting Toaded, etc... If the roll a 11 and get hosed chance were on a higher sided die, I wouldn't mind so much.


This doesn't bother me as much as one would think. I certainly see how it could annoy some people, but part of what I love about Talisman is the sheer number of characters, especially when you have a lot of the expansions, so if one of my characters dies, I will just pull another one and get back to it.

ampoliros wrote:

Halborn wrote:
I would say those 3 are my favorite parts, but I love how a story can be woven around each experience. In many ways I feel like Talisman mimics a classic JRPG with random battles and different ways that the game, itself, interacts with the players; if that makes sens
JRPGs came after Talisman.


I know, but it's the closest thing that I can liken it to.

ampoliros wrote:

My reasons for liking Talisman come down to it's just a really fun romp with some ups and downs. Contrary to the elitist detractors, roll and move works for Talisman. In my mind, a good roll and move game is no different than roll for action selection games. Talisman is a great story game.


I couldn't agree with this more!thumbsup

copcopps wrote:

I just cut out the Crown of Command spell garbage and have it just be a race to the crown. That knocks a good hour and a half at times even.


I would consider doing this, but only if there was no one else close enough to the crown to possibly make a difference. I’ve won more than a couple of games by being able to go take the player on the crown out, and I find that race to get there very satisfying.
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Tim Freerksen
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ampoliros wrote:
Halborn wrote:
My favorite game is Talisman. . . . Thanks for your thoughts!

Try Runebound.


He said something shorter... Runebound is far longer or at least feels longer.
 
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