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Subject: Looking to Buy Descent...Need Good Expansion to Go With It rss

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Erik Rodriguez
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Hello all,

I have been contemplating buying Descent: Journeys in the Dark for the past few weeks but wasn't sure if my roommates would enjoy it. Finally, got a chance to demo it with them and they are completely onboard for me buying it. One of my roommates even said he would buy an expansion to go with it if I bought the game. My roommate and I are definitely leaning heavily towards Road to Legend since it introduces campaign rules and overland maps. Do you guys think this is wise?

Also, out of curiosity, if you could only ever own one expansion for Descent, which expansion would it be and why?


Thanks
-Foxtrot
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Dale Quimpo
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Get Well of Darkness.

You won't have enough experience to enjoy RtL. All you'll get is a lot of confusion. RtL plays nothing like vanilla Descent. Sure RtL would be THE expansion to get, if you could only get one, but only if you've played Descent to death. It feels like a completely different game. Priorities are different, strategies are different, play style is different.

I purchase Descent with 3 expansions (no ToI back then) and I had to put RtL aside. It's not for beginners to the game.
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Bill Allen
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I appreciate John's advice, although the continuity of an ongoing quest and the ability to break it into smaller bite-sized (and saveable!)chunks were quite important for myself, where long gaming sessions are less realistic. That said, RtL also adds an extra level of rules to worry about.

I suspect many will jump up with Well of Darkness, particularly for the treachery cards they introduce. These are great for the overlord and can spring some nice surprises on the heroes, but less essential in my opinion given they also ramp up the difficulty for the players ... at a time when they are still learning the game. That said, it also has kobolds and ferrox!

There's part of me that wants to recommend Tomb of Ice, despite having not tried it out yet myself (although I do own it). Particularly, I think the feats will be great for the players as they learn the game, and the new monsters are nice. The RtL bits in it were nice for me, but less important for you, at least at the moment though, if you don't have RtL.
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Matthew M
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I think Well of Darkness gets all the fame because it came first. Altar of Despair also has treachery, but it didn't seem new like it did with Well as it had been done already.

But I nonetheless recommend Altar over Well. Altar's scenarios are more fun and the monsters you get are more interesting.

-MMM
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Well, "Well"!

If I could have only one expansion, it would be Road to Legend.

As an alternative advice, why not get your friend to buy a completely different game? A shorter, less complicated, game to play as a diversion, warm-up, or for those times when you´re just not in the mood for a whole game of Descent. That way you keep the group together, and keep´em playing!
 
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Matthew M
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I really strongly advise against Road to Legend unless you think the 40+ hour campaign mode is something your group will enjoy and follow through with. Otherwise it just makes playing a regular game of Descent a pain.

-MMM
 
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Denmark
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My recommendation is "Well" of darkness, as the best first expansion to buy, but he also asked:

Quote:
Also, out of curiosity, if you could only ever own one expansion for Descent, which expansion would it be and why?


And if that were the case, I´d definitely go for Road to Legend!

 
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Sheldon
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My newer printing of Descent JitD has all fixed cards, I have doubles of some cards from WoD.

For a first expansion I would say either Tomb or Well.

Tomb has feat cards, cool heroes (a sasquatch and a dude riding a wolf!) that mix things up and really cool monsters but doesn't give you near as much of a selection for trechery cards as Well or Alter. It also has non symetrical dungeon pieces so if you want to homebrew some adventures you can make much cooler looking setups. Tomb seems to give you more original content and much of the newer stuff is easy to understand and remember.

Well has a good stack of Treachery cards if you want to tweak your OL deck, heroes are decent, monsters are good general purpose blue collar workers who get the job done but not a lot of flash to them. You do get more new quests here too 9 vs the 6 in ToI or AoD, most with interesting mechanics (Running down a colapsing mine shaft, defending a base from waves of monsters, ect). This also comes with a bunch of stuff that seemed redundant, do you really need more web & daze tokens? Really? There are a few repeat dungeon pieces from the base game so you can make bigger set ups but nothing thrilling there.

Altar is probably my least favorite expansion. The monsters are kind of cool, the heroes are pretty good but many of the new rules just seemed kind of finicky (Not saying there aren't finicky rules in the other expansions, this one just seemed like it had more), corrupted terain, fog, cursed relics, prolonged actions, a bunch of new status effects, spiked walls were kind of cool but not as cool as that big boulder in Well... Seemed like too many new little rules to remember. I was sitting there punching these out and was just annoyed, too much stuff for me or my heroes to try and remember, It also comes with a big stack of treachery cards, many repeats from Well and also gives you corrupted glyphs which are cool but more rules to remember.

Tomb seems to give you more for the heroes and Well gives more for the Overlord, feat cards could be great for learning heroes but then again could be a crutch and slow thier learning curve. Treachery isn't needed against new players but can be good to mix adventures up with later on to keep things from getting stale. Kind of depends on what you think will better fit your group's play styles and tastes.
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Erik Rodriguez
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Wow! I never expected so many replies so quickly!

Thank you everyone for all your advice. After reading through all your replies, I think we've decided that we're just going to start with the base game of Descent so that we can get more familiarized with the game, and hold off on buying expansions until later.

Thanks again for all the help!
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Dale Quimpo
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foxtrot2620 wrote:
Wow! I never expected so many replies so quickly!

Thank you everyone for all your advice. After reading through all your replies, I think we've decided that we're just going to start with the base game of Descent so that we can get more familiarized with the game, and hold off on buying expansions until later.

Thanks again for all the help!


Very smart. Very very smart. And what's even better is that you actually have the good sense to follow advice (and save money at the same time). I went out and bought everything they had for Descent at the time. No regrets here, but still very foolish.

That being said, I'm getting Tomb of Ice when I get the chance.
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John Harley
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Agree with the sentiment to play out more of the base game before opening up expands.

I would go with Well then, but I havent got Ice so I dont know if it is better.
 
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Kyle Meighan
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On a related note, I see there are 4 expansions. (I think) What order were they released?

I just ordered the base game, and have never played.

Assuming I like this game, I have always liked to buy expansions in the order they were released. (Not sure why, but it is who I am.)

-One Wolf
 
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Christine Biancheria
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I'm a huge Descent fan, and I also caution against Well. It's very, very unbalanced against the heroes. Altar has much more interesting scenarios. It's just a better expansion.

Well: Seriously unbalanced against the heroes

Altar: Still unbalanced against the heroes but more fun

Tomb: Starting to shift in favor of the heroes, but works pretty good if you play with 3 heroes instead of 4. New monsters are very fun, and scenarios are not endless long slogs the way some of the others.

RtL: Too much too fast and plagued with balance issues. Save for later.

Base game alone: Mix of scenarios leaning in all different directions. They also put it out a little prematurely, so you have issues like final monsters taking a single shot to kill. With Tomb of Ice, they figured out to scale the boss monsters hit points to the heroes, so the final fights are good. As I write, in fact, I am persuading myself to say: base game plus Tomb. Use the Tomb concepts to scale the boss monsters in the base game, and you'll have a blast.

I realize you said you decided to just do the base game, but I think with Tomb, you'll be might pleased.

 
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Kyle Meighan
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MrSkeletor wrote:

Well of Darkness
Altar of Despair
Return to legend
Tomb of Ice.


Thank You.
 
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Christine Biancheria
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Altar is still unbalanced, but it's pretty fun, I think. For me, the ideal would be: buy Tomb. Cut your teeth on it. Then use the feat cards to play the Well and Altar scenarios.
 
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Shannon McNair
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kookoobah wrote:
foxtrot2620 wrote:
Wow! I never expected so many replies so quickly!

Thank you everyone for all your advice. After reading through all your replies, I think we've decided that we're just going to start with the base game of Descent so that we can get more familiarized with the game, and hold off on buying expansions until later.

Thanks again for all the help!


Very smart. Very very smart. And what's even better is that you actually have the good sense to follow advice (and save money at the same time). I went out and bought everything they had for Descent at the time. No regrets here, but still very foolish.

That being said, I'm getting Tomb of Ice when I get the chance.


Now there's a real gamer for ya! "I went out and bought everything...very foolish. That being said, I'm going to go buy more."

You are my hero
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Bryce K. Nielsen
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I actually think Tomb of Ice is the better of the three expansions (not counting RtL), *especially* for beginners, since the Feat cards make it easier for the Heroes, and the other two expansions make the game more difficult for the Heroes.

But if it were me, I'd get Road to Legend. I just can't play vanilla Descent anymore and must play the Advanced Campaign. The base game is so friggin' long that in just one sitting, it's almost anti-climatic. You spend hours building your character up, and just when he's awesome, the game is over. Advanced Campaign, you spend *weeks* building him the game kind of grows with you, and the longevity is so much more satifying.

The main caveat is of course your group. If you have a group that meets regularly (almost like an RPG group), then grab RtL. Otherwise, pick up ToI.

-shnar
 
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Mark Thomas
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Informative thread. I just purchased the base game... still waiting for UPS to deliver it. gulp

It's helpful to know what people think of the various expansions.
 
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Mark Thomas
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I'm loving the base game. My copy of Tomb of Ice should be here tomorrow.

Based on the advice in this thread, I decided on that one so that the heroes would have an easier time of things.
 
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Mark Thomas
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I'm addicted. Well of Darkness is on its way.

I don't actually intend to use any of its quests, we are still going through the base game quests. I mainly wanted it for the heroes, monsters, and cards.

I'm glad I got Tomb of Ice since the feats really do help the heroes. As the OL, I can crush them no matter how easy I make it.

The ice trap rocks.
 
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