Fred
France
flag msg tools
mbmb
Hi everyone,

I have just discovered this wonderful game and as a former (a loong long time ago ;-)) RPG player, I was intrigued and I am considering buying the game.


However, given space & above all time constraints, I have to make stark choices with regards to games I buy. I have a LP for Too Many Bones (TMB) Undertow and I was also considering buying the base game. I have also seen The City of Kings which looks interesting.
Hence, I have some questions/concerns about Hexplore It :


1. combat : it seems really simple. I know there is not supposed to be tactical combat such as in TMB (something which I like but don't necessarily need as I have skirmish games as well) but, reading the rules, I was a bit worried. I wonder how "strategic" combat is and whether there are real decisions/choices to be made

2. Leveliing up : One thing that drew me to Hexplore is the race/career combo. However, one thing I am not sure to understand is the potential for customizing one's character in-game. Comparing, again, to TMB, there are much fewer characters but each is very unique, and within a game, there are a lot of choices to be made as to which characteristics you upgrade or new skills you purchase. Also, there is a lot of loot. I haven't seen the same amount of possibilities in Hexplore in terms of character development

3. Variety in encounters : There are 25 bosses and quite a few encounters but I wonder how varied they are over time. I guess if your party of characters is different, combat will anyhow be different

4. Saving feature : I will play quite a bit solo and I'd rather do "campaign-like" games, but I will seldom be able to play 3 hours in a row. Hence, I wonder how easy iit is to "save" a game, i.e., saving the current state of the game, cleaning up (and them setting up again the next day. I think with the character sheets it is easy to store them, a photo of the map can be taken, but what about the circumstance deck, power deck...can we for instance, just store them upside down with their repsective discard piles ?

thanks !
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Nathan Loos

Wisconsin
msg tools
designer
Hey Corbin, thanks for taking interest in our game!


2. Hero Progression: There are a few main ways to upgrade your character. One is buying Gear Upgrades while you are in cities. Each of the 9 stats has an upgrade ring surrounding it with different gold costs. Just choose one of your stats, pay gold, cross off that section of the upgrade ring, and gain a rank up in that stat. Another method is Power Up cards. Each time quests are completed and turned in, after boss fights and some encounters, and many other effects in game will cause each player to draw cards from the Power Up deck. Each card will tell you which of your stats gain rank ups. There are also a few rare cards in the deck that will give you other bonuses, such as reducing your Food Rating or giving you a new Favored Opponent of your choice. This basically means that even if you play the same role and race combo, you will never have the same exact character by the end.
As for loot, there are a handful of treasure cards in the circumstance deck you may find as well as a plethora of items you can find or buy on your journey. This can range from Potions that heal to the Staff of Dragons, an item that lets you summon the Dragon Encounter to assist you in your movement across the board and combat.

1 & 3 Combat and Strategy: We have 30 Encounters in the Circumstance Deck and 10 total bosses on the map. Each boss (except for the Dead King) is optional. Yes, depending on your group composition the fights will play out differently.
Each Encounter has 3 different abilities while each boss has 6. Each hero will choose which of their abilities to use for that particular round. Then you roll the opponent die to see which of his abilities it will use. Finally in the resolution phase, you resolve all the damage, healing, and other effects happening. Then repeat the above steps until either the heroes or opponents stand victorious!
So knowing what your opponent is capable of and the chances of them using the ability can be important to the heroes decisions. Each opponent also has an Energy pool that powers some of their powerful abilities. If the heroes reduce that pool enough, they can prevent them from using that ability. Each hero may have their own strategies which may give them bonuses for that combat or even for the remainder of the game that they will be working for.
Finally it's important to note the difficulty setting. At the beginning of the game, you start on Starter difficulty. At any point outside of combat, you may choose to increase the game difficulty. Doing so increases the amount of damage all opponents will do as well as giving a boost to their Vitals and ranges from Easy to Epic. This also increases the rewards you will gain. If you choose to increase the difficulty you may not decrease it later. Once the difficulty is moved to Moderate, all bosses will gain a passive ability that may change how you fight it.

4. Saving the game: So you can do just as you say, take a picture of the map and store your roles. The game comes with a deck tuck box for each deck, so I would suggest just taking the discard piles and facing it in the opposite direction when storing them in their respective boxes. The same can be said for the quests and circumstances currently revealed in play.

Thanks again for all the great questions! This was just a bit of an overview but I hope I've cleared some things up for you.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fred
France
flag msg tools
mbmb
Shiden wrote:
Hey Corbin, thanks for taking interest in our game!


2. Hero Progression: There are a few main ways to upgrade your character. One is buying Gear Upgrades while you are in cities. Each of the 9 stats has an upgrade ring surrounding it with different gold costs. Just choose one of your stats, pay gold, cross off that section of the upgrade ring, and gain a rank up in that stat. Another method is Power Up cards. Each time quests are completed and turned in, after boss fights and some encounters, and many other effects in game will cause each player to draw cards from the Power Up deck. Each card will tell you which of your stats gain rank ups. There are also a few rare cards in the deck that will give you other bonuses, such as reducing your Food Rating or giving you a new Favored Opponent of your choice. This basically means that even if you play the same role and race combo, you will never have the same exact character by the end.
As for loot, there are a handful of treasure cards in the circumstance deck you may find as well as a plethora of items you can find or buy on your journey. This can range from Potions that heal to the Staff of Dragons, an item that lets you summon the Dragon Encounter to assist you in your movement across the board and combat.

1 & 3 Combat and Strategy: We have 30 Encounters in the Circumstance Deck and 10 total bosses on the map. Each boss (except for the Dead King) is optional. Yes, depending on your group composition the fights will play out differently.
Each Encounter has 3 different abilities while each boss has 6. Each hero will choose which of their abilities to use for that particular round. Then you roll the opponent die to see which of his abilities it will use. Finally in the resolution phase, you resolve all the damage, healing, and other effects happening. Then repeat the above steps until either the heroes or opponents stand victorious!
So knowing what your opponent is capable of and the chances of them using the ability can be important to the heroes decisions. Each opponent also has an Energy pool that powers some of their powerful abilities. If the heroes reduce that pool enough, they can prevent them from using that ability. Each hero may have their own strategies which may give them bonuses for that combat or even for the remainder of the game that they will be working for.
Finally it's important to note the difficulty setting. At the beginning of the game, you start on Starter difficulty. At any point outside of combat, you may choose to increase the game difficulty. Doing so increases the amount of damage all opponents will do as well as giving a boost to their Vitals and ranges from Easy to Epic. This also increases the rewards you will gain. If you choose to increase the difficulty you may not decrease it later. Once the difficulty is moved to Moderate, all bosses will gain a passive ability that may change how you fight it.

4. Saving the game: So you can do just as you say, take a picture of the map and store your roles. The game comes with a deck tuck box for each deck, so I would suggest just taking the discard piles and facing it in the opposite direction when storing them in their respective boxes. The same can be said for the quests and circumstances currently revealed in play.

Thanks again for all the great questions! This was just a bit of an overview but I hope I've cleared some things up for you.



HI Nathan,

thanks for your thorough answers.

Still, I am not sure it allays my "fears". Indeed:


1. it seems that "levelling up" consists primarily in icnreasing your base stats rather than discovering new abilities and loot seems primarily used as a way to increased those stats as well (except for the Staff of Dragon you mention but those seem few and far between). I understand why this is so given the large number of characters, but the way I see it, it makes character progression within a game more limited, less fun. Using TMB as a comparison again (I use it a lot because I know it a little bit and is kind of a competitor to Hex in my view), you can indeed increase your base stats (and it seems wise to do so usually) but you also have about 10-16 new abilities you can discover. This makes for more variety within a game and also increases the decision space because some abilities are better than others vs. certain opponents.

2. As to combat, I am not sure what to think. It feels like its main attractiveness would be the interaction between the different characters' power, right ? Meaning that things would be less interesting in a solo game, unless one plays 2 or 3 characters.


So, as a summary, the way I perceive the game right now is the following : a lot of replayability because of the sheer number of hero/classes combinations as well as bosses and encounters. However, tough decisions in-game are probably less numerous than in a game such as TMB or Gloomhaven, i.e., its more of a "light" RPG-like game (which is not bad, one just has to be aware of it).
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Jonathan Mariucci

Wisconsin
msg tools
designer
mbmbmb
Hi Corbin, have you had a chance to look through any of our YouTube play throughs? They might be helpful to you in seeing how the game plays out.

https://www.youtube.com/hexploreit

Thanks for your questions and let us know if we can help answer any more.

Jonathan
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Matt
Australia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just a quick input from me Corbin,

you seem interested in similar games to me as I have purchased TMB and hexplore it. I also considered city of kings but at the time i had a few kickstarters going and backed off haha. I enjoy both TMB and Hexplore it (although yes I only just started playing my first game of Hexplore It)
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fred
France
flag msg tools
mbmb
thanks Matt !

I would be glad to have your feedback when your game(s) is/are finished, above all with respect to combat.

Also, how does it fare compared to TMB ? Indeed, they are clearly different, with TLB having more of a focus on tactical combat, but they both scrath the cooperative RPG-lite type of game itch.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fred
France
flag msg tools
mbmb
mariuccij wrote:
Hi Corbin, have you had a chance to look through any of our YouTube play throughs? They might be helpful to you in seeing how the game plays out.

https://www.youtube.com/hexploreit

Thanks for your questions and let us know if we can help answer any more.

Jonathan



Hi Jonathan,

I did watch some of them but I haven't seen one from you guys. Isn't there one ?

Because the ones I watched were a bit...long-winded and not overly precise.
When it is not a review per se, I'd rather see an edited and sharp video from the designer than from a bunch of guys I know nothing about (no disrespect for them, but that's just the way it is).

I like seeing presentations of a game by the designer because (i) he knows the game best and as such explains it well and (ii) he is usually passionate about it.

So if there particularly good videos (or discussions) that exemplify in-game decisions and combat decisions I'd glad if someone could point me to them. As I said, I really like the way characters I created and their diversity but I am a bit worried about the depth of combat and character progression.

What I like in those kind of games is (i) a sense of your character becoming stronger and more unique as the game goes by (not just levelling stats...so basically a so-called skill tree) and also (ii) a sense of urgency as the game progresses, which de facto limits the progression and thus makes every decision meaningful ; (iii) tough comabt decisions where teamwork is key.

thanks !
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Miguel Gonzalez
Germany
Berlin
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Hi Corbin,

I've been playing the game regularly since I got my KS delivered.

What I can tell about character progression is - it feels great to get those power up cards and see which stats increase (especially if you draw one of the rare epic cards).

The stat rings around each ability and skill is basically the mechanical effect of your progression. Instead of buying a chain mail of bla or whatever you may be drawing from a loot deck or whatever other option there could be, you simply spent the gold and increase the stat. Mechanically its just the same, you have to add your own story to this step as thinking about it as getting a better weapon (if you increase attack) or a magical armor (if you increase your defense)... this may appear lacking but in the end it's just the same as having an item card that says - +1 attack -

The way the playerboard is designed you keep everything neat and its in constant flow and I must say I was very impressed by how well the dry-eraser work with the mats - changing stats goes quickly and smoothly and battles have been often down to taking the right action in order to avoid getting killed but also making enough damage to emerge victoriously.

The game does have its quirks, but it didn't keep me from coming back to it. (Especially the beginning of your journey can be extremely unforgiving if you have a stroke of bad luck. Happened to me twice and man was that frustrating - but once I got passed that point suddenly my character got more powerful and that made so much more a difference).

I'm glad to have backed it and now I just need to clarify some minor questions regarding the rules, but nothing that seems game braking.

I hope this helps you get a better impression of the game.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fred
France
flag msg tools
mbmb
Justicex75 wrote:
Hi Corbin,

I've been playing the game regularly since I got my KS delivered.

What I can tell about character progression is - it feels great to get those power up cards and see which stats increase (especially if you draw one of the rare epic cards).

The stat rings around each ability and skill is basically the mechanical effect of your progression. Instead of buying a chain mail of bla or whatever you may be drawing from a loot deck or whatever other option there could be, you simply spent the gold and increase the stat. Mechanically its just the same, you have to add your own story to this step as thinking about it as getting a better weapon (if you increase attack) or a magical armor (if you increase your defense)... this may appear lacking but in the end it's just the same as having an item card that says - +1 attack -

The way the playerboard is designed you keep everything neat and its in constant flow and I must say I was very impressed by how well the dry-eraser work with the mats - changing stats goes quickly and smoothly and battles have been often down to taking the right action in order to avoid getting killed but also making enough damage to emerge victoriously.

The game does have its quirks, but it didn't keep me from coming back to it. (Especially the beginning of your journey can be extremely unforgiving if you have a stroke of bad luck. Happened to me twice and man was that frustrating - but once I got passed that point suddenly my character got more powerful and that made so much more a difference).

I'm glad to have backed it and now I just need to clarify some minor questions regarding the rules, but nothing that seems game braking.

I hope this helps you get a better impression of the game.


thanks Miguel ! Yes, the player boards do indeed seem nice !
However, my main issue is that there is no real skill tree (see Too Many Bones or The CIty of Kings) and that character progression is limited ton increasing stats and you cannot acquire new abilities, which is find less fun.

In terms of replaybaility, this is counterbalanced by the fact that there are so many initial combinations. However, it means that within a single game, the opportunities (and as such, the decisions to be made) to develop your character are limited unless I am mistaken.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Miguel Gonzalez
Germany
Berlin
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Each class has 2 unique abilities which have additional effects once you reach a certain rank of that Mastery (First and second Mastery) - that makes for roughly 4 effects in average which you can combine. Some Masteries allow you to use the other Mastery at a certain cost or for a certain number of times.

I suppose the diversity here comes from the setup of your party. But if you want 16 wholly different abilities for your one character and that's the only thing you care about, then this game does not offer this. What it does offer is a huge sandbox style game with many ways to explore and tell a story.

A fixed set of abilities also allows you to focus and make each character really feel unique which I consider a strength. I personally believe having a pool of 16 vastly different powers which I can acquire usually leads to picking the same 3 or 4 because they apparently help you more at winning which gives an illusion of choice or variability. But that's just my 2 cents regarding the comparison. You'll definitely get a lot of game out of this and its actually the first game of my entire collection which I play solo and gladly do so again and again.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Antonio Tang
United States
Madison
Wisconsin
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
lillumultipass wrote:
I did watch some of them but I haven't seen one from you guys. Isn't there one ?

Because the ones I watched were a bit...long-winded and not overly precise. When it is not a review per se, I'd rather see an edited and sharp video from the designer than from a bunch of guys I know nothing about (no disrespect for them, but that's just the way it is).

I like seeing presentations of a game by the designer because (i) he knows the game best and as such explains it well and (ii) he is usually passionate about it.

Did you miss the one starring the designer created himself (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_GEISiQ7TLA)? Unless, of course, the "Jonathan" in the video isn't Jonathan the game designer. I thought the explanation was pretty good (not long-winded at all), and he seemed pretty passionate about the game.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Fred
France
flag msg tools
mbmb
thanks a lot, I did miss it !
I had seen it but the title was not...suggestive enough I would say.

I will definitely have a look then !
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gorka Morka
Germany
Bavaria
flag msg tools
mbmbmb
You keep comparing it to Too Many Bones. It's not a game in the vein of TMB. Apples and oranges... It's more or less like Runebound 3rd with the coop-addon (Unbreakable Bonds). And in my humble opinion: It blows Runebound out of the water.

TMB totally sucks, because in D&D 3.5 there's a gazillion more options for character development. ;-) See what I did there?

Regards, Gorkar
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Drake Tungsten
msg tools
mbmb
Hi, Fred. Based on your concerns you might enjoy Runebound 3e, as its Skill acquisition system really sold me. Hexplore It & RB seem similar with some minor differences. I love RB, but decided to look into Hexplore It once it got my attention with its modular map and variety of hero + race combos.
1 
 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.