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Subject: Notes / thoughts after first play rss

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Adam Skinner
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There are three resources in the game, one of which is renewable:
1) Gold: Used to take actions, pay taxes, pay some monster costs, and occasionally pay trap card costs.
2) Food: Used to take actions, pay monster costs, buy gremlins, and pay for some traps
3) Gremlins (renewable): Used to get gold, dig new tunnels, and produce on rooms

Monsters usually require food to buy, or they move you up the evil track. Some cost gold. It's imperative to have enough monsters to kill your year-end adventurers. While you can sometimes get by with traps and fatigue, monsters are superior because they score VP at the end of the game and are renewable, whereas traps are one-use items. There is a balance though, because you don't have to pay upkeep costs on traps.

Traps are useful, but are vulnerable to the thief's avoid trap ability. They're also one shot. There is a trap room where you can produce a trap for 4 workers, and traps are much cheaper than monsters (free/.5/1 gold each, depending on position). Only one trap per tunnel, AND traps cost gold to play in rooms.

You want to have both monsters and traps to kill your adventurers. Each combat round you have adventurers left, they flip a tunnel on you, which is a net 4VP change. You can avoid this by killing them all quickly with powerful monsters/traps or by using a trap that will prevent the conqueror phase (these traps usually prevent fatigue as well, so they're best suited for use with monsters that can strike round after round, or with large amounts of monsters).

You need food to get gremlins, and gremlins to get gold and dig tunnels. You need gold to pay for tunnels once a year in taxes, and food to (potentially) pay for monsters + monster upkeep. So having enough food is important, though if you go with evil-based monsters (ghosts, vampires and the like) you can get away with much less, or put that food to good use by getting more gremlins to produce on your first-year rooms.

Gold / Evil --> Food --> Gremlins --> Gold / Tunnels --> Taxes / Rooms / First and Third Tier Costs
Monster Cost / Food --> Evil --> Paladin / Tougher Adventurers

Being evil is tough, plain and simple. You get the most powerful adventurers (though potentially not the most synergistically damaging) each season, and if you lead the pack and exceed the threshold you get the paladin. If you can deal with him, this is actually a good thing since you get 5VP for him. He's hard because he has lots of HP, can heal and deals with traps. Plus spells hit you, so it's going to be rough. Just keep all of his abilities in mind, because they're going to impact how you deal with him. Fighting him in the room where you can set multiple traps, or attack him with multiple monsters, is good. Hit him hard and quick; he's not someone you will be able to bleed out, due to his healing, or rely on traps due to his dampening of their effects.

Additional observations:

* Everyone needs gold, and there's only one way to get it
* Not having enough gold is disastrous, because for each gold you can't pay in taxes you lose 3VP; some actions also cost gold depending on where you are in the resolution order.
* Killing things quickly is best, to avoid losing tunnels.
* Try to shoot for a title or two to give yourself some additional direction.
* While the first year rooms produce things you'd otherwise have to use one of your 3 minions for, the second year rooms typically will conditionally give you VP at the end of the game.
* Hide rooms far away from the door, unless used in a second year battle (some of these rooms also prevent spell effects / use additional traps instead of additional monsters)
* Do not sacrifice monsters for tunnel buildout! You gain vp for monsters, and lose vp when you lose tunnels.
* You can potentially manage which adventurers you get by adjusting happiness, either via minion assignment or by using the room
* Regardless of whether you're spending an action to purchase food or paying an evil cost directly, monsters usually cost evil (the Golem is an exception to this).
 
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B C Z
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adam.skinner wrote:
3) Gremlins (renewable): Used to get gold, dig new tunnels, and produce on rooms


My imps are taking great offense to being called gremlins.
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Greg Perschbacher
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Quote:

There are three resources in the game, one of which is renewable:
1) Gold: Used to take actions, pay taxes, pay some monster costs, and occasionally pay trap card costs.
2) Food: Used to take actions, pay monster costs, buy gremlins, and pay for some traps
3) Gremlins (renewable): Used to get gold, dig new tunnels, and produce on rooms


There's definitely a 4th resource, EVIL devil
 
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Scott Russell
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All in all, I like your summary.

Some counterpoints to your observations.

Quote:
Everyone needs gold, and there's only one way to get it


You can get a lot of gold with the souvenir shop or the mint. But you don't want to run out.

Quote:
Killing things quickly is best, to avoid losing tunnels.


I've only played three times, but have done well using the Russia strategy (trade tunnels for time). I agree that you take a hit on VP, but that is partially mitigated by gaining the tunnellord title (and it keeps your rooms safe.)
Quote:

Try to shoot for a title or two to give yourself some additional direction.


Most (literally, I think) of my points have come from titles. You can't overemphasize this part of the game. The trophy room is really nice, too. cool



 
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Eric Rampson
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There are three ways to get Gold:

1) The MINE GOLD action
2) The third space of the GET FOOD action
3) The SOUVENIR SHOP and MINT Production Rooms
 
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Adam Skinner
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Scud-O wrote:
There are three ways to get Gold:

1) The MINE GOLD action
2) The third space of the GET FOOD action
3) The SOUVENIR SHOP and MINT Production Rooms


Quite correct. I guess what I meant was "one reliable way" to get gold. While the production rooms help, I view them as more of an afterthought/supplement (at least in the first year) than a real strategy. Unless you've prepared the way and are swimming in "imps". Everyone needs to mine gold. Is this not so?

eluvitar wrote:
There's definitely a 4th resource, EVIL devil

At first glance, you might consider evil to be a resource, but it's something that you can never run out of. It's more of a consequence, I think. It takes a certain degree of guts/foolhardiness to stick your neck out ahead of the pack and shoot the moon with evil. This happens to have been what I did during my "learning game". I was able to munch up the paladin and all the adventurers I got at the end of the second year, and only lost 1 tunnel doing it.

Of course, my real folly was looking to the player opposite me and seeing that he was swimming in gold, and everyone else needed gold (just like me) and thinking "He's not going to place gold, he doesn't need it!" and getting squeezed out of gold on the last round, leaving me with a 5 gold deficit before paying taxes. So I took a -15VP hit right there, and that swung the game away from me and to him (I think).
 
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Markus
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qzhdad wrote:
I've only played three times, but have done well using the Russia strategy (trade tunnels for time). I agree that you take a hit on VP, but that is partially mitigated by gaining the tunnellord title (and it keeps your rooms safe.)


Nice strategy. You better have enough gold for those taxes though or you'll be in a word of VP hurt!
 
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Steve Duff
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adam.skinner wrote:
At first glance, you might consider evil to be a resource, but it's something that you can never run out of.


Not entirely true, if you're at the top of the evilmeter, you can no longer pay evil as a cost any more, thus essentially you've "run out".
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Garry Rice
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UnknownParkerBrother wrote:
adam.skinner wrote:
At first glance, you might consider evil to be a resource, but it's something that you can never run out of.


Not entirely true, if you're at the top of the evilmeter, you can no longer pay evil as a cost any more, thus essentially you've "run out".


Steven is correct if the original poster was playing the "full" game. However, I believe the top limit on evilness only applies in the "full" game and not in the introductory/base game.
 
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Matt Smith
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UnknownParkerBrother wrote:
adam.skinner wrote:
At first glance, you might consider evil to be a resource, but it's something that you can never run out of.


Not entirely true, if you're at the top of the evilmeter, you can no longer pay evil as a cost any more, thus essentially you've "run out".

That's only true with the full game. There is no evil limit in the basic game. I feel this is an important rule, and should be used except when teaching new players.

I use the 1 gold cost to put the monster card in slot #1 rule even in teaching games..
 
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Tokelau
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UnknownParkerBrother wrote:
adam.skinner wrote:
At first glance, you might consider evil to be a resource, but it's something that you can never run out of.


Not entirely true, if you're at the top of the evilmeter, you can no longer pay evil as a cost any more, thus essentially you've "run out".


Yep, what he said, I almost ran out of evil the other day on monster payday when I had a vamp, witch and a ghost to pay for.
 
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B C Z
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Evil has already been mentioned as a limited resource.

I think you've missed some crucial resources though:
Minion Actions
Monsters
Rooms

Minion Actions are the most precious commodity in the game. You get exactly 24 of them, fewer if you manage to get shut out of an action that all four players all desired.

Production rooms gained in the first year trade imp-labor for minion actions.

Review the production rooms that can be gained year one:
Trap: 4I -> 1trap
Food: 3I -> 1F {x2 tiles}
Gold: 3I -> 1G {x2 tiles}
Dig: 2I -> 1tunnel
Rep: 2I -> 1
Imp: 2I + 1F -> 1I

Everything but Rooms and Monsters, which are another limited in quantity (and as the year progresses, increasingly predictable).

Rooms and Monsters are the other limited resource. You know exactly which monsters will be available in a given year and by process of elimination, you know what monsters will possibly be available the following year.
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