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Subject: New heroes. Am I missing something ? (Turns out I was) rss

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Eddy Bugnot
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Is it just me, or does the new team feel far weaker than the old ones overall ? Here's some of my thoughts. Please tell me if I'm missing something.

Paladin - Okay, that guy's pretty good, he gets two constantly regenerating health points that are also immune to stunning. That's actually so powerful that the Overseer has every reason to try damaging the other characters instead. But to be fair, the barbarian rage is just as good.

The Sorceress - Now this one... She just stinks compared to the wizard. The wizard had a boatload of extremely versatile powers that he's free to use throughout the entire dungeon while her powers are nowhere as interesting and she only gets 6 mana points. And whenever she wants to replenish her mana pool she has to sacrifice precious healing ! At only 8 life (and since the overseer will probably avoid the paladin) she's going to need it.

The Ice Princess - Okay, she gets to move and then make a ranged attack, but the ice power isn't all that good. A skilled overseer will probably both easily knock off the ice block AND hit a hero in a single shot (unless your placement was really optimal, an opportunity not all that frequent). And she only gets one per room.

The Witch Hunter - His items are incredibly tempting, that's for sure, but the monster requirements are so high... If you use the normal dungeon configuration, you will have a hard time crafting anything before the final room, and in order to save that many monsters, it means the Witch Hunter is going to have to do most of the kills himself. Oh and if the Overseer needs some of your precious saved monsters for a room, well, that can be a huge setback.

I also find the new party lacks the following two things :

Money. The absence of the thief makes the party a lot poorer, which is especially annoying considering you dont get half priced items anymore.

Range. No archer, Ice princess only gets a non damaging ranged attack, and the sorceress has to save her mana.

So, what are your thoughts ?

Otherwise, I still think this is an awesome expansion (dem monsters and items !) and I cant wait for another one. I want moar ! MOAR !
 
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Mark Jackson
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
The Sorceress is looking better to me after a couple of plays... her "teleport" power is extremely useful: shoot the Paladin into the mix to do some serious damage, trade him w/the Witch Hunter & let him clean up.

It doesn't always work - but there's some very nice combos you can pull off with this crew.
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Eric Foldenauer
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
I think the new heroes actually get better as they go deeper in the dungeon which in my mind is genius.

The witch hunter and ice princess in particular improve as they delve. The Witch hunter becomes wickedly powerful by the time you get near the end as you can really craft a hefty number of artifacts if you are strategic (and successful) with your kills.

The ice princess has a high degree of getting very powerful items from the merchant that can make her really tough too. Also, that ice shard shot... if you save it for the last hit of the room, it essentially becomes a critical hit (Think: Orc wolf rider - kill in one shot instead of 4). That seems pretty powerful to me. Then what happens if she gets two shards to fire? Or that ice shield?

The paladin is more static. He is powerful in the beginning, but doesn't have much to improve his abilities throughout the game.

The sorceress is interesting because she has abilities that make her exceedingly useful to help the other three heroes. She seems best served to stay hidden and working her machinations behind a column. Thematically, this is fantastic to me.

Edited for clarity.
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Eddy Bugnot
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
@ Gamemark

Well, it's not like the wizard doesnt have a teleport power of his own... Sure he can only use it once, but he also has health replenishing missiles, fireballs, a skeleton, a big shield, a healing spell...

@ fograsher

- witchunter : Well, I see what you mean, but that's still a heavy burden on the witchunter player, and I'm not sure one or two free items covers the huge money and health boost you'd get from having the other party.

- ice princess : Sure the ice shot sounds powerful as a way to finish a room, but, unless I'm wrong, the orc wolf rider wouldnt count as a kill and you'd be turning down like 300 gold. And I still feel that party needs money. They're the hobos of dungeon crawling, gotta squeeze every penny. Also, that means you're going to have to let a orc wolf rider roam freely for the entire duration of the room just so you get that instakill.

- Paladin : Well at least he's reliable. He's a good tank, and you can afford risking him.

- The sorcererss : Well, staying behind may be thematic, but it aint going to be much fun for the one playing her doesnt it ? And since she has to save her mana, it may mean she wont do anything at all in a couple of room. Also, you've got one less person knocking monsters around and soaking up her share of party damage. That's pretty risky.
 
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Eric Foldenauer
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Andromeda No Shun wrote:
@ Gamemark

Well, it's not like the wizard doesnt have a teleport power of his own... Sure he can only use it once, but he also has health replenishing missiles, fireballs, a skeleton, a big shield, a healing spell....
yeah, but in every room, the paladin could make a crazy shot and do some initial damage, ending in a vulnerable spot. The sorceress can than swap the paladin and the witch hunter, anbd the witch hunter finishes them off. This can even happen multiple times in a turn, as long as the sorceress has the mana or health to do so.
Andromeda No Shun wrote:

@ fograsher

- witchunter : Well, I see what you mean, but that's still a heavy burden on the witchunter player, and I'm not sure one or two free items covers the huge money and health boost you'd get from having the other party..
Agreed. My initial play was one on one, so I didn't really consider who would have to be the work horse of the team. That being said, wouldn't you consider the thief player to be equally critical with the other heroes? Also, I think the witch hunter still gets the money on top of the monster trophy (just no 100 coin bonus like the thief)
Andromeda No Shun wrote:

- ice princess : Sure the ice shot sounds powerful as a way to finish a room, but, unless I'm wrong, the orc wolf rider wouldnt count as a kill and you'd be turning down like 300 gold. And I still feel that party needs money. They're the hobos of dungeon crawling, gotta squeeze every penny. Also, that means you're going to have to let a orc wolf rider roam freely for the entire duration of the room just so you get that instakill..
you get paid for the ice shard "kill" as the defeated creature will go on the ice princess' character card. for the orc wolf rider, you would not get the bonus of killing the orc as well, I imagine (although this would be open to interpretation I think).
Andromeda No Shun wrote:

- Paladin : Well at least he's reliable. He's a good tank, and you can afford risking him..
agreed. He's a relatively static tank.
Andromeda No Shun wrote:

- The sorcererss : Well, staying behind may be thematic, but it aint going to be much fun for the one playing her doesnt it ? And since she has to save her mana, it may mean she wont do anything at all in a couple of room. Also, you've got one less person knocking monsters around and soaking up her share of party damage. That's pretty risky.
I agree her roll for flicking is often times not very useful, but she does get a double missile shot (again good to use from behind a column). I am not sure I see this as being that different from the wizard roll in how she is used. The player with the worst flicking skills would probably want to play the sorceress most(assuming 5 players), as her roll is more about strategy then flicking.

I also agree that playing her conservatively is risky. To me that's the fun of the game. Assessing your risks and having trade offs for attempting a high reward strategy.
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Eddy Bugnot
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Quote:
Agreed. My initial play was one on one, so I didn't really consider who would have to be the work horse of the team. That being said, wouldn't you consider the thief player to be equally critical with the other heroes? Also, I think the witch hunter still gets the money on top of the monster trophy (just no 100 coin bonus like the thief)


You're right, my reaction mostly comes from my personal experience with the game : The thief always got quite a bit of kills naturally while I felt we really had to force the witchhunter in situations where he got many kills.

Quote:
you get paid for the ice shard "kill" as the defeated creature will go on the ice princess' character card. for the orc wolf rider, you would not get the bonus of killing the orc as well, I imagine (although this would be open to interpretation I think).


My bad, I thought leaving the room with the monster encased in ice didnt count as a kill. Forgot that clarification in the rules.

Quote:
...The sorceress...


Your points regarding the usefulness of her powers are perfectly valid, and yet, I still cant get over her mana meter. The wizard can just barge in and start shooting missiles and fireballs even in an early room, unless you really go nuts, you'll still have plenty of powers for the rest of the dungeon. But with the Sorceress, you're really on a tight leash as every power you use, you may sorely regret further down the line. And since a clever overseer will really try to beat down the weaker members of the party (since the Paladin is so resilient, that's a viable strategy) you probably wont be able to afford spending too much of your valuable money into mana points.
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Christian Busch

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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
I think they are pretty balanced and can be even more powerful than the first party. The Witch Hunter occupies the same role as the the thief- you want him to get all the kills he can. Money to him isn't as important which means, when the time comes, he takes all his kills and makes magic items and gives his money to other characters to buy cool stuff. A fully decked out Witch hunter is brutal to deal with. Start him with the item that reduces the cost of future items and he can easily get 4 or 5 great artifacts. That sword that allows 2 fireballs is amazing, the warp staff that sucks in a target lets you instantly end rooms when hitting the last guy just like the Ice Princess can with freezing enemies.

Make no mistake, this party can totally wreck rooms at later levels. I haven't played with the sorcerer yet so I can't comment on that character but the ability to dip into the health to get a needed power is pretty awesome. She's got some great items as well.

The Paladin as a hit soak can save the party 2400 gp by taking two hits in each room leading to the Healer. Combine this with some earlier decisions by the Witch Hunter to take several of the immunity items and you have a party that has two damage soaks that are doing nothing but saving you money for all the cool new items.

Don't get me wrong, the old party is a lot of fun to play with but don't sell the new set short.
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Eddy Bugnot
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Quote:
I think they are pretty balanced and can be even more powerful than the first party. The Witch Hunter occupies the same role as the the thief- you want him to get all the kills he can. Money to him isn't as important which means, when the time comes, he takes all his kills and makes magic items and gives his money to other characters to buy cool stuff. A fully decked out Witch hunter is brutal to deal with. Start him with the item that reduces the cost of future items and he can easily get 4 or 5 great artifacts. That sword that allows 2 fireballs is amazing, the warp staff that sucks in a target lets you instantly end rooms when hitting the last guy just like the Ice Princess can with freezing enemies.


Oh boy, do I feel silly now ! Your post made me realize... The multicolored icons on the witch hunter's cards mean "one of any color". For some reason, I was convinced that they meant "one of each color", meaning that for example, the blood amulet required two complete collections of all 4 colors !

Okay I take back everything I said, while the sorceress is still definitely weaker than the wizard imho, the witch hunter is so insanely powerful that it balances itself out really.

Thanks for the thoughts ! You guys have been really helpful !
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Brian M
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Quote:
This can even happen multiple times in a turn, as long as the sorceress has the mana or health to do so.

The portal counts as the sorceress' action, so it can only happen once per turn. And costs the sorceress her own melee shot.

Quote:
you get paid for the ice shard "kill" as the defeated creature will go on the ice princess' character card. for the orc wolf rider, you would not get the bonus of killing the orc as well, I imagine (although this would be open to interpretation I think).

I'd think you'd either get the rider gold as well, or treat the wolf rider as a special case and not end the battle at that point - basically consider that the rider is still in the battle, he's just sitting over on top of the wolf card and not on the board.

We hadn't seen that clarification about ending the battle, and last game when we had a frozen wolf rider, we just all carefully set up so we could take it and the rider out in one turn of shots.

As others have said, the Ice Princess is best used later in the room when there aren't many monsters left. Makes her a lot better. I think she's at least as good as the elf.

The Witch hunter is certainly a lot more interesting than thief, and his special ability is probably at least as useful, most likely better, and he has more health.

The Paladin has almost effectively +10 or so extra hit points. And can avoid being stunned or criticalled. That's awesome.

Overall, when comparing the characters, what stands out is that the women are all a lot less interesting and somewhat less powerful than the men. Which really makes me dislike Sands of Times games.
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Christian Busch

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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Andromeda No Shun wrote:


Oh boy, do I feel silly now ! Your post made me realize... The multicolored icons on the witch hunter's cards mean "one of any color". For some reason, I was convinced that they meant "one of each color", meaning that for example, the blood amulet required two complete collections of all 4 colors !


Oh wow, that would be quite difficult to pull off and I can see how you were frustrated earlier. Glad we could help and yeah, that witch hunter is pretty great.

StormKnight wrote:
[
Overall, when comparing the characters, what stands out is that the women are all a lot less interesting and somewhat less powerful than the men. Which really makes me dislike Sands of Times games.


Wow. That statement is so ridiculous that it's hard to actually respond. If that really offends you and makes you think that this was a malicious and calculated attempt on the part of the designers to marginalize women then I wonder how you play most games in any kind of fantasy genre. It's not like SoT went out of their way to commission female art that depicts them in basically underwear and accent only the, ah, more marketable side of the female physique.

The fact that SoT made an even split of the heroes to be female, even in the expansion, instead of supplying the typical token female character actually shows that the company is a bit more forward thinking than most companies producing fantasy games. If the highly subjective "less interesting" powers associated with the female characters offends you, then change the gender of the other heroes to fit your need. Make an all female fighting foursome to take on the perils of the evil male-dominated catacomb lords.
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Eric Foldenauer
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
StormKnight wrote:
Quote:
This can even happen multiple times in a turn, as long as the sorceress has the mana or health to do so.

The portal counts as the sorceress' action, so it can only happen once per turn. And costs the sorceress her own melee shot.


Sorry. that was poor word choice on my part. I meant she could use her ability multiple times in a room, and did not mean to say she could perform a portal spell muliple times as her action.
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Brian M
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Quote:
Sorry. that was poor word choice on my part. I meant she could use her ability multiple times in a room, and did not mean to say she could perform a portal spell muliple times as her action.

Ok. Partly checking this because the really odd wording implies that its maybe not supposed to be an action, and wondered if other people were treating it that way.

Last time we played we decided tried allowing her to use the Portal and Alternate Form spell without taking actions. Made her a little more useful.

I'm being hard pressed to see a reason to ever use Alternate Form though.

Quote:
If that really offends you and makes you think that this was a malicious and calculated attempt on the part of the designers to marginalize women...

More likely they're just a bunch of sexist guys who don't think women can be as good as men and so unconsciously or not made them worse. Wouldn't be the first game to do that.
Yes, there are lots of games that are a lot worse. Am I supposed to applaud them for only being jerks and not being complete jerks?
 
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Eddy Bugnot
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Quote:
I'm being hard pressed to see a reason to ever use Alternate Form though.


I've been thinking of having the spell last for the entirety of the game. It might be useful, but it's still kind of a waste of a perfectly good mana point that might be put to better use somewhere else so I still think it'd be somewhat balanced, she's a weak character anyway, a (slightly) broken power can't hurt.

Quote:
More likely they're just a bunch of sexist guys who don't think women can be as good as men and so unconsciously or not made them worse. Wouldn't be the first game to do that.
Yes, there are lots of games that are a lot worse. Am I supposed to applaud them for only being jerks and not being complete jerks?


I think you might be a little paranoid here, and your choice of words is a bit harsh. But it would be good if SoT included at least one very powerful female character in the next expansion (Maybe sum sort of Amazon, kind of cliché I know, but why not ? It's heroic fantasy, not historical drama), just in case.

Also, "expansion", there's that word again. Hear me SoT ? I need another expansion... Possibly with new rooms, new characters, everything !
 
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Clay Cooper
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Re: New heroes. Am I missing something ?
Hmmm...if it makes you feel better, you can always pretend the Hydra is a female version of it's species. There! Problem solved! You can climb down now.
 
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Jeremy Knutson
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I've only played 3 games so far (2 with base game heroes, 1 with Soloth heroes).

I felt like the Sorceress was pretty good. The Open Portal spell is useful, and Mystic Flare is the same spell as the Magic Missile, which is one of the Wizard's best spells, and he can only cast it once, while the Sorceress can (and will) cast the spell many times.

I'm not so sure about how useful Alternate Form is, however. (Like one commenter said, it is cute, though). If anyone knows how to maximize its usefulness (strategically or by a fair house rule), I'd be interested to know.

I'm disappointed in her Iris Staff, though. Spending a precious magic point to make a critical hit doesn't seem that great, especially since she can do 2 damage through the Mystic Flare anyway. Does anyone have a differing opinion on the Iris Staff (I'd like to hear it)? I was thinking, that maybe if the Iris Staff was house ruled so that the sorceress player could spend the magic point retroactively (after a good melee shot), then maybe I'd feel better about that item.

(P.S. I must say that I also disagree about any possible implications of sexism in the game. I think that the Thief, Elf and Ice Princess are all useful (and fun) characters that become great characters when their items are purchased. I don't think that the Paladin's or Barbarian's items are necessarily as fun as theirs (and that's OK). I also like the Sorceress (she has 2 excellent spells that she can cast many times, while the Wizard has many spells, but can only cast the excellent ones a few times.))
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