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Arkham Horror: The Card Game» Forums » General

Subject: Lead investigator bias rss

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Matt Smith
Australia
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How come Lita is added to the lead's deck? Why don't the players get to decide who's deck?

It reminds me of old video games, where player 1 was the one who got all the control and benefits, while player 2 was a little tacked on. That's not the case here, but there is this 'lead investigator' bias (like the extra XP in R2) in this game and I'm wondering why that is. Can't it just ask players to choose an investigator themselves? Or have a cooler way of selecting who gains the benefit/consequence (the person who originally gained Lita is the one to gains for the next scenario; the person with least damage taken gains the extra XP, etc).

What do you guys think? Do you think the arbitrary lead investigator bias is justified? Why?
 
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Jamie Murphy
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I don't think there is an arbitrary lead investigator bias. First, you choose the lead investigator before starting the game so there is nothing arbitrary about it. Second, yes sometimes the lead investigator may get a certain benefit but they also may suffer from an ailment that the others don't have to deal with.
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Brandon Eckhoff
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It’s true.. it’s not always a benefit they get...
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A. Leafman
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Matt09 wrote:
How come Lita is added to the lead's deck? Why don't the players get to decide who's deck?

It reminds me of old video games, where player 1 was the one who got all the control and benefits, while player 2 was a little tacked on. That's not the case here, but there is this 'lead investigator' bias (like the extra XP in R2) in this game and I'm wondering why that is. Can't it just ask players to choose an investigator themselves?


Well, the players choose who is lead investigator.

Moreover, it makes story sense that the lead investigator would get Lita, since it's the lead investigator's house that burns down to appease her.

Finally, the lead investigator is usually not a very big deal. It doesn't come up very much after this. Especial rewards or penalties for the lead investigator are uncommon. And unless there is a clear story reason why this should not be the case, the game is usually careful to say "the investigators decide" rather than "the lead investigator decides" (e.g. everyone as a group chooses which scenario to do first in the Dunwich Legacy.)

I would agree with you that if the lead investigator frequently got substantially better rewards than the other investigators, it would feel unfair, but that isn't the case.
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Stuart Holttum
United Kingdom
Southend on Sea
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Matt09 wrote:
Can't it just ask players to choose an investigator themselves? Or have a cooler way of selecting who gains the benefit/consequence (the person who originally gained Lita is the one to gains for the next scenario; the person with least damage taken gains the extra XP, etc).


Do you feel that players should also choose who takes the potential trauma at the end of the scenario, instead of that going to the lead investigator?
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Matt Smith
Australia
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Stu Holttum wrote:
Matt09 wrote:
Can't it just ask players to choose an investigator themselves? Or have a cooler way of selecting who gains the benefit/consequence (the person who originally gained Lita is the one to gains for the next scenario; the person with least damage taken gains the extra XP, etc).


Do you feel that players should also choose who takes the potential trauma at the end of the scenario, instead of that going to the lead investigator?


I've been informed that the lead investigator benefits as much as they do receive consequences (such as what you're bringing up). This sounds fair to me.

If that weren't the case though, and I was still arguing my point, I'd say that yes, they should. Have some flair like 'Choose an investigator who suffered the most hardship' or 'Choose an investigator to suffer 1 mental trauma. "The horrors they experienced are scarred within their mind forever"'

That seems fun to me. And of course, if the players can't agree, the lead investigator chooses (the idea of a lead breaking ties and solving disagreements is a good idea to me, regardless of everything else I've brought up).
 
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Dean L
United Kingdom
Coventry
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I think it's a neat little mechanic. Not letting you chose the player is part of the point: you can't just dump negatives on those most able to handle it or vice-versa. Where you've not played the campaign or seen those resolutions before, it's effectively "a random investigator" - but it's not random, you picked them, so it sort of feels like "your fault" which I find far more thematic than just shuffling the investigator cards together and randomly drawing one.
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Julius Besser
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I think it's to help streamline the first campaign, which is designed to help new players. When playing with a new player, it's more fun to make them the lead investigator and force these things on them, claiming the rules require it. That helps ensure the new player will have the richest experience, by having the extras thrown at them, without any potential bitterness that they are being picked on by having everything get them.
Later campaigns give more choices about how to allocate these kinds of things.
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B.D. Flory
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New York
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The reason is both mechanical and thematic. The lead investigator suffers the trauma because it's their home that's burning down. The trauma is also, in part, to balance an extremely powerful story asset, which is why the same player gets both.

As far as Lita goes, it makes a degree of sense that the ghouls are interested in the lead investigator, so she's interested in the lead investigator.

Sometimes, investigators choose who gets story assets and punishments and so on, other times not. It's really case by case, and a design choice for each instance.
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Ivans Ivanovs
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and you should add a tag "spoilers", since one of the resolutions have been spoiled.
 
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Matt Smith
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mundicus wrote:
and you should add a tag "spoilers", since one of the resolutions have been spoiled.


That's a very good point. I'm really sorry if I spoiled anything for you.
 
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