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Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition)» Forums » General

Subject: Initial thoughts after joining a PBF game rss

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Craig Truesdell
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I recently joined a PBF game as the Overlord and we are almost done with the first encounter.

Initial thoughts so far:
Playing against people vs playing against a system is much more intense. Reminds me of the first time I played Doom against a friend over a modem no less. I can't finish even a short Road to Legend game.

With the map tool and the D2 Cardviewer extension, playing a PBF game is really easy. The websites and articles people have written really help to make the game and all of the expansions manageable especially to someone new. It really helps you move up the learning curve quickly which is nice.

Free diagonal movement was a design mistake I think. I really like the tactical experience with the minis but the no cost diagonal movement takes away from that. I would prefer a every 2nd diagonal move you make during that mini's activation costs 1 extra mp. Too late now though as it would almost certainly unbalance the scenarios.

I really like the PBF experience. I have time to plan my moves and react to what the players have done and what I should do about it. Being newish to the system, it is a big help. I feel PBF or PBEM is the better experience for a lot of games though. Did I say how cool the map tool is?

I had to pick up the Heirs of Blood book as my core game had the older adventure. $20 delivered and it appears to be worth it so no complaints. I would be happy if more campaign books were published either by FFG or 3rd parties. I am going to see if anyone made versions of classic D&D dungeons.... I do think some fog of war would be nice when it comes to the maps. The players should have to face some uncertainty when descending into the dark besides open group monsters.

I have been reading various strategy articles related to playing the Overlord. Those have helped me move up the learning curve as well, time well spent and highly recommended. Because it is a competitive game against live opponents, you won't get the perfect strategy but will likely save you from making really bad mistakes due to lack of experience. (that way I can focus on making the usual mistakes I seem to make)

FFG appears to be done expanding Descent with physical packages which kinda stinks but holy cow there is a lot here already, I doubt I could ever play it all anyway and the community is quite active so no worries. It may be a plus as the game system settles down a bit. Depending on the hero mix the players pick and the OL cards picked, I imagine the replay value is very high. In our game, someone has a whip which can move the monsters around which means blocking strategies are now rather suspect. One crack in the seam and foxes are in the hen house! (Stupid free diagonal movement!)

There is the making of a really interesting RPG here especially if Runebound 3 is added in. However, they went with their RPG system from Star Wars instead which doesn't do much for me. I would love to see a Player's Guide and GM Manual for using Descent and Runebound as basic for creating adventures. I feel that way about the Pathfinder Adventure card game too but there doesn't seem to be the demand for boardgame/RPG combined gaming so probably the right call on their part.

VASSAL and other 3rd parties tools are well supported which is really nice. I still need to get my physical game organized though, what a mess. Don't even ask about my Imperial Assault state of affairs. whistle Other game companies take heed, FFG and GMT support VASSAL and the like... you should too!

I did buy a bunch of paints with the plan to paint them all. I started with the rats, it has not gone well.
Might be nice if a 3rd party created some (ok a lot) of tokens/counters/pogs using the game art for the game to go with the miniatures... maybe they do already?

I like the artwork, I think Pathfinder is my favorite but I like this too.

No comment on the custom dice... been said already...

Overall:
So far so good, fun stuff, happy to be getting a return on my investment!
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Julian Leite
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There is an RPG sourcebook! It's an expansion to their Genesys system. Look up Realms of Terrinoth
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Craig Truesdell
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jubez187 wrote:
There is an RPG sourcebook! It's an expansion to their Genesys system. Look up Realms of Terrinoth

That one I have! I was thinking more of a GM manual that would help you create interesting adventures using the Descent system. It's all there and nothing is stopping me from doing my own but some guidance from the publisher would help get the ball rolling. Maybe I will try and create a simple one using the map system and see how it goes.
 
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Julian Leite
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Yeah, I mean, there's a official FFG quest maker but the functionality is lacking. I'm in the middle of making a solo campaign with it, but the bugs and glitches have slowed my progress for sure.

Sadly, there was no quality control with the quest guide and many fan made ones were broken, or just didn't have the polish (ie. Writing "Give that monster extra HP" instead of "The master monster is X, he has Y bonus health." Descent has a pretty consistent way of writing things and people deviated from that. Made their quests feel shoddy.
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Craig Truesdell
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I had forgotten about the quest maker, I will have to check it out. Completely forgot about the consumer created quest database also.

Thanks!
 
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Craig Truesdell
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this is 30 minutes work on trying to make the haunted keep from Moldvay basic...


Interesting product, works well for me so far.





need some green slime... or yellow mold...
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David Binkley
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Shadows of Nerekhall has bright green acidy looking stuff on the tiles.
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Mlai00 Mlai00
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Unless you want to take up mini painting as a full time hobby, I recommend just washing the minis. It makes the minis pop, and you can finish all the Descent minis before your kids graduate from college.
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Craig Truesdell
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Shows you how much I know, I literally thought you meant washing them with soap and water.

That looks pretty cool.

I was thinking about some painted minis from D&D or Pathfinder that I could touch up or add on to that might work.

Or if I could find some really nice pogs, being a wargamer, I am cool with using counters instead of minis.

 
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Lightningclaw Stormcaller
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ctcharger wrote:
Shows you how much I know, I literally thought you meant washing them with soap and water.

You should do that too if you’re putting paint/a wash on your minis
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Craig Truesdell
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adding to the things I would change after more play...

Monsters have the same choices as the players when it comes to attack and moving (I know some monsters can attack 2x but all of them should)

I like using Stamina as extra MP but it should still require a move action. Otherwise, I like the stamina aspect.

 
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ctcharger wrote:
1. Monsters have the same choices as the players when it comes to attack and moving (I know some monsters can attack 2x but all of them should)
2. I like using Stamina as extra MP but it should still require a move action. Otherwise, I like the stamina aspect.
1. That's a huge balance change. Just as much a disruption as if you house-ruled that moving diagonally costs 1.5 MPs, and you cannot squeeze diagonally through 2 monsters, or through 1 monster + 1 corner. (wink wink, nudge nudge)

2. Dunno what you mean.
 
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Craig Truesdell
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would completely imbalance the game for sure..

Stamina allows heroes to move and then attack 2x, so at the start, they can perform 3 actions basically, I like the idea of using stamina to move further but it should still be a move action.
 
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ctcharger wrote:
Stamina allows heroes to move and then attack 2x, so at the start, they can perform 3 actions basically, I like the idea of using stamina to move further but it should still be a move action.
Oh I see, it's a monster buff + hero nerf. I'm sure that'll go down well.
It's not a move action per se... more like a dodge roll if we go by video game conventions. That's why it seems more powerful than regular moving.
 
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Craig Truesdell
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What I am suggesting would be a completely different game all the way, not tweaking the current rules. It would make it more like a war game or even a rpg. I like grid maps but dealing with the diagonal is crucial and going around corners took some getting used to but now I see it.

The big monsters getting small and then big again doesn’t bother me. Saves a lot of rules by doing it that way.
 
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