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Talisman (Revised 4th Edition): The Frostmarch Expansion» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Warlock Quests variant rss

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Peter Enzerink
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The new Warlock Quests endgame variant introduced in Frostmarch has a lot going for it in principle as it can have a big influence on the overall playing style. This is not without some game balance issues and rules conflicts unfortunately.

In my most recent game we played the Swashbuckler and the Knight. One of the possible quests is to take a life from another character however this is impossible for the Knight while the opponents are Good unless they attack first. This turns what should be a relatively simple quest into a show stopper.

Some of the adventure cards relate to quests and it is not all that clear how to treat some of those cards in this variant. This may be due to the instructions being less succinct than they could be and I expect we'll see some clarifications in the official FAQ at some point.

Another issue with this ending is completing a quest by forfeiting a gold. This is obviously trivial compared to attacking another player, and with a bit of luck you can complete all your quests literally in the first few turns with soft options such as discard a: gold, follower, weapon, fate. The game then becomes a short race to get strength or craft up enough to get to the inner region at which point the game is abruptly over.

Despite my criticism, overall this new ending is good fun because it does change the style of game play, which is great because the usual Crown of Command thumping ending can get a bit stale after a while. I don't know why the Talisman series is listed at 90 minutes per game because most games can continue for 2.5-4 hours from our experience.

The Dungeon expansion works well with Frostmarch because it is rich pickings for boosting craft and strength and the conflict with the Lord of Darkness provides a very convenient shortcut to the Crown of Command at which point the game is over.

There are some additional alternative endings that can be downloaded from http://www.fantasyflightgames.com/edge_minisite_sec.asp?eidm... and some fan made ones in the image section of BGG.

This is a pic from the game that prompted this review:
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Rauli Kettunen
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placid wrote:
In my most recent game we played the Swashbuckler and the Knight. One of the possible quests is to take a life from another character however this is impossible for the Knight while the opponents are Good unless they attack first. This turns what should be a relatively simple quest into a show stopper.


There are quite a few show stopper Quests. Take 1 Life if your char happens to be 2/4 (and can't psychic combat) and is up against Troll and Ogre Chiefain. "Kill a Dragon", there are now 6 or 7 Dragons I think in the 288 card Adventure deck. Dungeon has a couple more in its 128 card Dungeon deck.

We've always used the Replacing Quests Variant with this ending. It gives the player the option of getting rid of a Quest that could potentially prevent them from winning, because chances of completing that Quest are so minimal.

Quote:
Some of the adventure cards relate to quests and it is not all that clear how to treat some of those cards in this variant. This may be due to the instructions being less succinct than they could be and I expect we'll see some clarifications in the official FAQ at some point.


Which ones do you mean? Glory Seeker, Lake of Visions and False Grail?

Quote:
I don't know why the Talisman series is listed at 90 minutes per game because most games can continue for 2.5-4 hours from our experience.


Funny, I would list Talisman as 45-75 minute game. Ice Queen ending is the only that even reaches 90 minutes, due to the forced extra stat-boosting needed.

Quote:
The Dungeon expansion works well with Frostmarch because it is rich pickings for boosting craft and strength and the conflict with the Lord of Darkness provides a very convenient shortcut to the Crown of Command at which point the game is over.


Dungeon tends to see most action in an Ice Queen game for us. Again, since that ending forces you to work your main stat to around 14-15 when in combat, need to boost up more than in a normal game (main stat 8 or more and Talisman, hit the Inner Region). And Dungeon is THE place to boosting fast and a lot.
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Darren Dew
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I would guess that your group is mostly experienced players, then, to be done in such a short order. I would guess that most groups won't be done in 45-75 minutes until they have several games under their belt.
 
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Rauli Kettunen
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Zelif wrote:
I would guess that your group is mostly experienced players, then, to be done in such a short order. I would guess that most groups won't be done in 45-75 minutes until they have several games under their belt.


Well, R4th logged plays are at 97 (with 20-30+ of the BI 4th edition) whistle . Still, I can't say the overall plan has changed over time.

Basic plan is: get main stat to 8+ and have a Talisman -> hit the Inner Region.

Different endings alter this of course, as does the state of the game. If you're clearly in the lead and have no Fate (since we use the BI board but only the Village errata, no Fate replenish), you might wait until you have main stat at 10+. Main stat 8+ and 2+ Fate left -> Inner Region. Someone like the Troll needs just +2 Str to reach the Str 8 level, with a bit of luck with the Enemy draws, that's 4 kills. Frostmarch did dilute the Enemies in the Adventure deck, but if you draw Cross for Troll or Ogre Chieftain, Dungeon can be entered early (turn 3 is the earliest I think I've seen). Craft characters have a slightly bigger task on their hands, they need Craft to 8+ and Str at around 6 in battle.
 
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Lorenzo Carnevale
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Dam the Man wrote:

"Kill a Dragon", there are now 6 or 7 Dragons I think in the 288 card Adventure deck. Dungeon has a couple more in its 128 card Dungeon deck.


BTW, do you think that killing a "board space" dragon, or a "fight a dragon" outcome on an adventure card, qualify for this? (IMHO yes)
 
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