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Elder Sign» Forums » Rules

Subject: Dying and Starting a New Character rss

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Matthew Robinson
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So I can die and come back as many times as I want?

And the only downside is I lose all my cards/trophies and add 1 doom token to the track, right?

I read the rules, read the boards, played a few games, but I just want to make sure I got this right.

The game comes with 16 characters so in a solo game I can get 16 lives? In an 8 person game everyone (assuming everyone dies once) gets two lives?

I understand the downside to this is that it adds one doom token to the track and if you died 16 times you would obviously lose (probably long before you hit 16), but still you can die many, many times and still win.

I played a 2 player game last night where my friend died 4 times and I died twice AND the Old One awoke and we won, albeit it was close.

And yes I know you can't come back from the dead during an Old One battle, which I think is a really good rule and makes the fight tense (something somewhat lacking in other parts of the game).

Not saying this is a negative but it's the one part of the game that kept me checking the rule book and saying "man, this part feels like we're playing it wrong. Can you REALLY keep coming back from the dead?"

I really don't enjoy playing variants very much, as I like to play the game as it was meant to be designed, but the game feels a bit too easy to me with constant re-incarnations and makes me want to limit deaths to 2 or 3 (like an arcade video game, maybe).

And yes I know I'm not the first one to bring up the easy-ness of Elder Sign, but for me the easy-ness is directly linked to the constant reincarnation rule.
 
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Bill Foley
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Well, the obvious alternative is to say, "you're out of the game", and leave the dead guy there with nothing to do for the rest of the game. I think the 'penalties' for dying can be significant, especially if you've amassed a good stash of trophies/clues.

Another penalty (discussed elsewhere on this board, I'm sure- I don't lay claim to be the first) would be to continue to move the clock for all dead characters. That should definitely add more challenge, though I don't think I'd ever play it this way as it would get too confusing remembering to do it the right number of times. Probably make the final battle very difficult, too.

Having said that, yes, you are playing it correctly, per the rules as written.
 
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Salty Skwib
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trilamb wrote:
And the only downside is I lose all my cards/trophies and add 1 doom token to the track, right?


I think this part is much more significant than one would initially think, depending on what your deceased character had initially amassed.
 
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Kevin Kam
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Skwib wrote:
trilamb wrote:
And the only downside is I lose all my cards/trophies and add 1 doom token to the track, right?


I think this part is much more significant than one would initially think, depending on what your deceased character had initially amassed.


Especially later in the game, when you tend to have eliminated most of the easier adventures and monsters have started to propagate. You'd be amazed how useless a new character can be in the endgame.
 
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Paul Clarke
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You are right, you can keep recycling characters during the main game (although you will be devoured when fighting Big Boss). Easy house rule for solo play which I use is that when your characters stamina or sanity reaches 0, then it's GAME OVER. You need to keep using cards or visits to the Entrance to keep going - and that uses time...
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Dane Barrett
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trilamb wrote:
Not saying this is a negative but it's the one part of the game that kept me checking the rule book and saying "man, this part feels like we're playing it wrong. Can you REALLY keep coming back from the dead?"


They're not coming back from the dead, it's new investigators joining the fight. Although...

zombie

Joe Diamond, "Where did I put my .45 automateeuurrghh?"
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Cutthroat Cardboard (Barry)
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mrmagpieman wrote:
You are right, you can keep recycling characters during the main game (although you will be devoured when fighting Big Boss). Easy house rule for solo play which I use is that when your characters stamina or sanity reaches 0, then it's GAME OVER. You need to keep using cards or visits to the Entrance to keep going - and that uses time...


For this who worry about the solo game being too easy this is the obvious first step in making it more of a challenge. It also adds more tension, forces you to use healing, which effects the clock, and helps drive the internal narrative.

In multi player games however, where you don't want someone sitting out for 2 hours watching others play, it makes sense for you to be able to move to a new character.

I also think that the penalty can be quite severe. In an ideal world you are trying to get your investigator into a position where he/she has lots of resources and effectively replaces the resources spent on a task by ones of similar value gained as the benefit of completing the task. This falls apart if you get devoured and leaves you back at square one, which can be tricky late in the game.
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