James King
United States
North Central Louisiana / No Longer A Resident of the Shreveport/Bossier City Area
Louisiana
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Challenge: Can *you* fix, salvage and/or enhance this game's broken rules using its existing components and possibly other accessories (like regular D6 or D8 dice and mini poker chips) so that it's more engagingly playable and enjoyable?

 
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Michael Kandrac
United States
Grand Prairie
TX
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I'm on it.

Gg
 
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Sam
United States
Raleigh
North Carolina
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We adopted three house rules that have made "Potions" more enjoyable for our family of four.

1) Rather than placing matching cards face down as you collect them, hold all four in your hand until you have a winning hand. This makes your matching cards vulnerable to a "Take," but also keeps hidden from the other players how close you are to victory. Much like Gin Rummy.

2) The "Take" rule was silent as to what to do with the 5th card in your hand. It seemed clear that you were only supposed to keep 4 cards in your hand, so we interpreted the rule to require the "taker" to discard one card while the "takee" drew one card from the draw pile to return all hands to 4 cards. The rule we added, however, was that if the card discarded was another action card, you performed that action as well. Thus, you could play a "Take" card, take a card from another player, play a second "Take" card in discarding your 5th card, take another card from another player, etc., until you discard a non-action card to end your turn.

3) Lastly, we thought the Apprentice win was too easy, having to beat only one other player. So, we changed the rule to require the challenger to beat ALL other players. This may result in fewer challenges, but will most likely force any such challenges to early in the game since players are now holding all cards in their hands and no one knows how close the other players are to winning.

Hope this invigorates an otherwise fairly passive game for you.
Sam
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B. Perry
United States
Colorado Springs
Colorado
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kinseysdad wrote:
1) Rather than placing matching cards face down as you collect them, hold all four in your hand until you have a winning hand. This makes your matching cards vulnerable to a "Take," but also keeps hidden from the other players how close you are to victory. Much like Gin Rummy.
Reading the rules, you're allowed to do that anyway. And it doesn't make you any more vulnerable, because
rulebook wrote:
If you have a matching Potion Card or Merlin's Ashes, you may place it face down in front of you, however [sic], this card is still considered to be in your hand so you must still discard to complete your turn
Effectively, there's no reason to place cards in front of yourself until you're going out.

The rulebook is pretty awful. What's the included bag used for? Not the tokens; the rules say they go in the cauldron.

Quote:
2) The "Take" rule was silent as to what to do with the 5th card in your hand.
True. So we played that it actually increased your hand size permanently (or until someone spilled your hand and made you draw 4).

I think your 3rd idea is spot on. Too easy otherwise, especially with 4 players. Additionally, the rulebook is silent on whether an apprentice challenge actually ends the round.

One final nitpick: Why do the rules specify that play proceeds counterclockwise? Just to be different? Er... differenter?
 
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