Simon Hammar
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Or do you reshuffle the hazard pile?

I find this a bit strange. There are 10 hazard cards to begin with. In a 2 player game, you're instructed to take 2 out. This leaves you with 8, which means that you will have 4 nights, thus 5 days.

5 days on 2 players means 4 actions per day, totalling 20 actions. Now:

* You need a minimum of 4 wood (3 for the shelter, and at least 1 for the torch). This will take a minimum of 5 actions: 3 for the driftwood, 1 to find the jungle (if you're super lucky) and then 1 to get 1 more wood.
* You need to find at least 10 food (8 needed, but you'll probably need more). That's a minimum of 2 actions from the food card.
* You will need to build the shelter, which takes a minimum of 2 actions (if you're super lucky).
* You will need to light the fire, which takes a minimum of 1 action.
* You will need to light the torch, which takes a minimum of 1 action.
* You will need to find the grotto, which takes a minimum of 1 action.
* You will need to enter the grotto: 1 action

This is 12 actions, at an absolute minimum, if you know exactly what to do, all dice rolls auto-succeed, all cards are lined up perfectly, and nothing happens during nights.

Rather, you'll more likely need 5 wood (you can fail with lighting fire, and that costs a wood), which will need at least 6 actions. Finding the food will probably cost at least 3 actions. Lighting the fire and torch will probably take 3 actions, and especially finding both the jungle and grotto is likely to take at least 4, probably 5 actions. Now we're up to 18 actions, when you STILL know exactly what to do, and you don't suffer from anything hazards during the nights – normally, you'll lose at least 3 actions from them, due to ants eating your food, and you getting tired, missing die rolls.

Technically speaking, it's not really realistically impossible to clear even the first scenario. There is absolutely no time to rest, no time to explore, no time to find items, let along lose time on the Axe. So I'm wondering if there's something I am missing. Should I reshuffle the hazard cards for a second round? Or should you only draw 1 card per night per team, and not per player?
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David desJardins
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It's not impossible?
 
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Simon Hammar
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DaviddesJ wrote:
It's not impossible?
On 3 players, you have 1 more hazard, which means you have 9 hazards=3 nights=4 days. So you'll have 6*4=24 actions (but you'll need 9 food, probably more). On 4 players you have 8 hazards, so just 2 nights = 3 days = 8*3=24 actions (needing 8 food, maybe more). On 5 players you have 10 hazards, so 2 nights = 3 days = 10*3 = 30 actions (needing 10 food, probably more).

It feels like a weirdly harsh time constraint – the game doesn't feel like being a "succeed every single die roll or die" kind of game. Which is why I'm guessing that I'm missing something. Should the hazard deck be reshuffled once? Or is this game designed to be Super Meat Boy?
 
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Marcus E.-L.
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Zimeon wrote:
Or is this game designed to be Super Meat Boy?
This comparison nails it in my experience.
 
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David desJardins
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Zimeon wrote:
It feels like a weirdly harsh time constraint – the game doesn't feel like being a "succeed every single die roll or die" kind of game.
That sounds more like "not possible" than "not impossible".
 
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Dan & Jen
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I can only speak for the German rules and cards. There you have 10 hazard cards for adventure 1 (regardless of player count). In Adventure 2 you'll have 12 hazard cards (10 when playing with 5 players).
So you have 6 days and 5 nights in a 2p game. That's tough but we managed to complete the goal in the second attempt.
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Simon Hammar
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Nepu wrote:
I can only speak for the German rules and cards. There you have 10 hazard cards for adventure 1 (regardless of player count). In Adventure 2 you'll have 12 hazard cards (10 when playing with 5 players).
So you have 6 days and 5 nights in a 2p game. That's tough but we managed to complete the goal in the second attempt.
Then I might have misunderstood the instructions on how many hazards cards there should be. If you have 24 actions to complete it, it does indeed sound doable, but I'm still a bit puzzled: There is virtually no time to do a side venture; no time to do a resting action, and you're still relying on cards lying in a correct order, and not failing die rolls. I test-played the first scenario a couple of times, knowing exactly what I should do, and I still failed, because the Jungle was the last card in the Places deck, and I failed on one of the three necessary discovery rolls; not to mention that needing 3 discoveries required that many food, that also took time. The other time, the Driftwood were among the last cards in the Flotsam deck.

And this was when I knew the contents of every single card in the scenario. The rest of the game, and the manual, says it's all about discovering new places and unknown cards, so it feels very strange that the very first scenario has such a time constraint that you all but must know the contents beforehand in order to stand a chance, and that you should never, never ever try to discover anything else than the most necessary.
 
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Simon Hammar
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I checked, and I did not misunderstand the instructions.

The card for adventure 1 says to use hazard cards 150–157 (3 players: 150–158, 5 players: 150–159). I.e. for 2 and 4 players, only cards 150–157 (8 cards).

So 20 available actions for 2 players, 24 available actions for 3 and 4 players, and 30 available actions when on 5 players. The food required is almost the same: 8, 9, 8, 10.

While I agree that 40 actions might be too much, 20 actions is way too few. The 5 player stance with 30 actions is probably a more well-balanced something.
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Simon Hammar
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Played scenario 2 on 4 players, and all I can say is that the current time constraint is doing nothing but deteriorating the entertainment I get out of this otherwise fantastic game.

Experiences from scenarios 1 and 2 are enough for me – I am simply prolonging the time constraints, because the game is amazingly super fun as long as you don't have to angst in having luck. As I see it, a game like this should be absolutely completable even if you have bad luck, as long as you know what to do. Currently, you have to have quite a substantial amount of luck ON TOP of knowing what you should do, and that simply isn't part of my "fun".

I think this game is absolutely downright awesome if the time constraint is just a bit looser. I LOVE adventure games, but I don't care much for a replay value if all it's about it "you have to be lucky".

I post my suggestion as rules variants.
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Christian K
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I ahve followed is with interest. It does look like they are unecessarily strict with time in the 2 player version (which is a bit weird this 5is is branded as an exploration game and not a "optimize the hell out of everything" euro). I will probably follow your variant when it hits my table
 
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Simon Hammar
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I decided to post it as a review in the end, as I would suggest this even for people who have never played the game, and a "variant" are usually posted for people who have played but want something more out of the game. My idea is to get people who have NEVER PLAYED to get more out of the game, if they are of the same mindset as me. Thus, a review instead.
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Jess Robinson
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Do you have to do all of those things? I've just played the first adventure once, with 3 players, and found the grotto fairly quickly (2nd place card) (admittedly that's luck of the shuffling) - that card ends the scenario, at least I hope we read it correctly. The torch + campfire didn't make an appearance until the 2nd adventure.

You can also deliberately not get all the food "required", and take some fatigue between you, to use the actions for other things.
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Simon Hammar
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It was a while since I played, but I couldn't even enter the grotto without a torch. And I couldn't light a torch without a campfire.
 
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