Josiah Leis
United States
Merino
Colorado
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I spent 100 GG and all I got was this stupid overtext.....
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So my wife was watching me play Descent with a couple of friends, just kind of there socializing and hanging out even though she wasn't playing. My friends were both fairly new to the game, but after playing the same quest two times (failed first time, got it the 2nd), we decided we were still up for more. Then my wife actually asks if she could play surprise! My wife is not exactly a "gamer", and has only been exposed to the hobby through me. I've gotten her to try a few lighter games, some high fantasy like Descent is definitely not her thing. Yet here she was, at 1:30 on a Friday night asking if she could play just when I thought she'd be headed for bed. I naturally responded with a resounding yes and my friends also were eager for another hero, so soon she was choosing her hero\equipment along with the other two while I set up Quest 9 from the base game, Old Friends. I'd never done it before but I'd heard it wasn't very difficult despite being the last quest in the book.

Oddly enough, my wife wound up with Verikas the Dead while my two male friends were playing Runewitch Astara and Andrea Runehand . She drew the Leadership skill card though, and that with Verikas' special ability is a very powerful combo. I knew from the start I wasn't going to be "out to get them" in the sense I wanted to crush the living daylights out of them, but I wanted to provide a fun challenge for them.

Now although I'd never explained the rules to my wife, she has an amazing ability of observation and therefore didn't need a rules explanation. In fact she jumped right into the game with only minimal questions, and was soon declaring her actions and performing them along with the others as if she was an old pro. Soon she wasn't just listening to the discussion about what to do or where to go next, but was actively participating in it. It was really cool to see her grow into this level of co-operative play and grasp the game mechanics as well as she did in such a short time.

After the first room, the group choose to head east into Area 2. Though it took them a little time to clear it, they soon had the runeplate and were heading south. The only notable thing that occurred here was a Poltergeist card that closed the door to Area 1 so 2 Master Blood Apes (also a treachery card) could spawn behind it. This combined with an Ambush (again treachery) card allowed the Apes and the 1 Sorcerer still alive to really tear into the heroes. I'd lined up Runewitch and Runehand so the apes hit them both devil. A triple treachery card play wasn't too pretty for the heroes there, but probably not really worth it for all the threat I dumped into it all. They both died quickly....

But the heroes moved on. Wearing the shiny new Runeplate they tore into Area 4. They cleared most of the room with a Breath weapon Runewitch had found, but another treachery card Spawned a Master Troll just out of LoS. A charge card let him move up and I made his Bash attack aimed. The result was a dead Andrea Runehand, and a Runewitch reduced to 1 wound (she had the Runeplate Relic on or she would've died). This proved little trouble and they soon were headed west toward Area 3, my wife waiting to open the door with Verikas.

My wife asked if they wanted her to open the door since she was standing next to it and could take her turn first. They both told her to wait for them to catch up to her before opening it, so she simply rested. I however drew my Rolling Boulder treachery card into my hand at this time. I hadn't planned on playing this unless it was going to be "fun" for everyone to see. I played it at the end of the hallway as the last hero moved and it rumbled toward them. Needless to say the heroes were VERY eager for Verikas to open the door the next turn as the boulder rolled closer. The heroes were lucky though, very poor rolls on my part meant it only inched forward until they were well out of the way. It did keep them from the chest in Area 3 though, they decided not to waste time and just ran straight up toward the Red Runelocked door leading into Area 5.

A spawn in Area 1 right behind the door from where they were standing combined with Manticores chasing them from Area 3 led to a kill for me, but soon they entered Area 5. A mimic card ran the gold treasure chest away from them here, and 2 Demons, 2 Manticores Chasing them, plus the Ferrox spawn led to some unfriendly results for the heroes. Ultimately, Glim plus the Demons managed to score a few kills and really hinder the heroes progress, getting them down to 3 Conquest at one point. But runewitch's ability saved the day, as she was able to take the Aura damage from a Demon and flip the glyph that was 5 spaces behind it angry. This allowed Runehand to come through, kill the mimic gold chest and open the other one, scoring the heroes some VERY deadly weapons. One of them canceled the Undying ability and prevented Glim from trying to resurrect after the heroes finally killed him, scoring a victory and completing their quest.

And through all of this, my wife's character took.......a grand total of ONE wound the entire game! It came from the Aura of a Demon she stepped next to which she promptly killed . Part of this was due to the fact that she was very well armored and had a shield so I didn't really like attacking her as much as the squishier heroes, partly because of bad luck on my part when I did (had a few misses), and part was due to very good play by her. She made several very wise decisions, that I would not have expected from someone who'd only watched 2 games and never played before. Some examples included playing a feat card that gave her stealth when a Ferrox attacked her instead of one that gave her 4 Armor. She figured she already had enough armor to ignore the Ferrox's damage, and the real danger was its bleed, hence better to give it a chance to miss outright. She was right, and her stealth die saved her! When the battle was Glim began and I explained what the Touch of Death did she was also smart, realizing that since she was worth the most conquest she'd be an attractive target. So she used Invisibility potions and Dodge orders in concert to discourage me from attacking her. These were not things I'd expect from a woman who isn't really into these types of games (at least I thought ), especially on her first one.

I know she had fun playing, but since we didn't finish until 3:45 or so, the game kinda started to drag a bit as people became very tired and a little loopy. Still I think she enjoyed herself. I have no idea if she'll ever play again, though I'm hopeful that she will give it another try sometime. In fact, I've started painting my minis and she's actually helping me! She's a very creative person and does a great job (better than me in fact, not that that is very hard), and we both enjoy spending the time together. Although not a real competitive cutthroat type of session, it was one of my favorite games of Descent ever , and hopefully not the last one I'll enjoy with my wife.

As for the quest, Old Friends is rather easy considering its the last quest in the book. I imagine a group of 4 experienced heroes would probably rip through it pretty easily, especially once they figure out the layout. The layout is the only odd thing to me, the heroes have to choose to go either south or east at the beginning. South leads to a room full of Ogres and Manticores?!? East leads to Skeletons, Sorcerers, and spiders.....and the RELIC from the quest. I suppose south does give them a silver chest in the 2nd room as opposed to the 3rd if they went east, but it's still not worth the extra headache and not having the relic. So it seems kinda like the heroes have two seemingly equal choices, but one is a FAR better option. Oh well, I suppose they'd learn that after a try or two, and the quest would still be winnable even if they went south. Not a bad quest at all, but probably not going to become one of my favorites.
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Henrik Hermansen
Denmark
Ringsted
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Nice session read
 
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Sean D.
Canada
Langley
British Columbia
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Three cheers for all those non-gamer wives that play games with their BGG husbands! Are there some women with non-gamer husbands who play once in a while?
 
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Doug File
United Kingdom
Oxfordshire
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I enjoyed reading that, even if I am insanely jealous - there's no way my wife would join in with a game.

Here's hoping she keeps playing in future - and you never know she might start getting involved in other games too?

 
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Derek Anderson
United States
Ennis
Montana
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There is nothing better than playing board games with my 4 sons!
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There is nothing better than playing board games with my 4 sons!
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It is something about this game.... Similar situation on my end, we played this one weekend at our local groups gaming day (which was at my house that weekend), my wife took no interest at the time, but a few nights later I was playing it with 2 of my sons (I have 4 boys, so I have my own gaming group - lol), and she saw and said it looked like fun the previous weekend when she saw the older guys playing it, so she asked to play.

A friend of mine also had a similar story, and it was Descent that it happened with as well. Hmm...

CC.
 
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Greg F
Ireland
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My wife LOVES this game. She's played two Road to Legend campaigns with my gamer friends, and we're now playing Sea of Blood.

However, she has very little interest in every other game I've gotten for her to try. Carcassone, Small World, A Touch of Evil, Last Night on Earth, Aquaretto, Galaxy Trucker.

She'll try them, and then not want to play them again.

Anybody else got a Descent mad wife (Descent, not gaming in general), and if so, what other games does she like?
 
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