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Prophecy: Dragon Realm» Forums » General

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Tim Mierz
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I've been able to use the Dragon Realm expansion three times, although one of those times excluded the realm itself. Overall, it's a nice but not earth-shattering expansion to a fun adventure game. I'll break down my experiences by the component parts:

Races
There's not huge variation between the characters in the base game, just starting stats within a small range and home guilds. The races available in this expansion help give each player further distinction. Depending on your character choice, you might get something minor (Human, Elf) or with notable consequences (Halfling, Troll). Either way, it's a cool way to shake things up, and a nice alternative to the fan-made starting kits (which are very well-done and cool to use if you're not using Dragon Realm). I'd always use them, even with new players.

Dragon Realm
The biggest part of the new expansion is actually one which everyone might not use. In fact, it's possible for a game to complete with no one going there, but I doubt that'd be common. There are some creative Greater Guardian-strength monsters (with sweet rewards and painful penalties) and neat items and skills to pick up on the way, but it's a slow, low-decision process. You're sacrificing some flexibility on the main map for some potentially sweet rewards. The board feels a little cramped, but there aren't many other ways for them to accomplish the same paths - the board is just small enough to fit in the box, and the game is already table-space intensive in the first place, so making a larger folding board might just be a pain. The 3 gold cost of going to the realm in the first place is sort of a nuisance, especially since it's hard enough being able to beat the challenges that the extra time of acquiring the gold just seems like too much piled on, but I guess it stops some XP grabbing from easy initial obstacles over and over. The extra Dragon Realm-related abilities that can show up at the guilds through the Legends of Dragons cards didn't seem to be too popular with the other players in my two games with them, but I found them to be hugely helpful in getting through there. Given that they're entirely useless anywhere else and take up a sometimes-precious ability slot, I can see why they're not hugely desirable though.

New Cards
This expansion added a couple cards of each type, including extra guardians (so you don't always know what's coming up), some race-specific items and encounters, and random other things, like Asian weapons and dual-type creatures. Neat little additions that give extra variety and less predictability. Plus, who doesn't want to throw a shuriken at a centaur?

Replacement Cards
It's nice to not have to remember the errata for cards like Potion of Healing and Storm Queen, but I really wish that the reprinted Fire-breathing Dragon didn't also have a misprint of the same type as the original (the (X) should be a (!)). Maybe in Water Realm we'll finally get a correct dragon?

Final Thoughts
Like Galaxy Trucker's Big Expansion, this expansion has a lot of modular parts to offer. I haven't yet tried cooperative play and don't expect to play solo, so there's even more that I haven't talked about. But while I'd call Galaxy Trucker's expansion a must for anyone playing that game more than a couple times, Dragon Realm is just a "nice to have." I definitely don't regret buying it, as I already really enjoy Prophecy, but if you're not playing much Prophecy as it is, I don't see this as making you play a ton more.
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Reggie Sanchez
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The expansion slows the game slightly as there are more challenges to deal with before getting to the artifact. Also, the player in the Dragon realm does not take a chance card and is not affected by any time cards drawn. The net effect is opportunities appearing on the base board are slowed depending on how many players are in the dragon realm.
 
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Tim Mierz
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It may slow it slightly in those ways, but if someone makes it successfully through, they've gotten a ton stronger and can sail through other encounters with a much lower chance of failure, so maybe that helps balance it out.
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