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Subject: Dungeon Deck Info rss

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Ian Toltz
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While contemplating getting the dungeon decks, I found the dearth of information fairly maddening. I really had very little idea what to expect... I hope to change that for my fellow geeks.


Each dungeon deck set comes with a 60-card dungeon deck, two slightly over-sized boss cards (depicting the single dungeon boss, in levels 1-4), 6 achievement cards, a pack of 8-10 random loot cards (sorry, I didn't count), 4 character sheets, and a rulebook.

How does the dungeon work?

It's intended to be played against 3 new class starter decks. You get to choose a difficulty level, which have appropriately thematic names which I've conveniently forgotten. The difficulties are:

*Novice: The dungeon lord starts at level 1. Heroes take the first turn. Intended for new raiders.
*Easy: The dungeon lord starts at level 1. Dungeon takes the first turn. Intended for experienced raiders.
*Medium: The dungeon lord starts at level 2. Dungeon takes the first turn. Intended for constructed decks (as opposed to class starters).
*Hard: The dungeon lord starts at level 3. Dungeon takes the first turn. Intended for masochists.

Level 1 dungeon lords become level 2 if any single hero has 10 or more damage at the beginning of a dungeon turn. Level 2 dungeon lords level if any single hero has 20 or more damage, and level 3 lords level if any hero is dead. The dungeon lord gets beefier as he levels, and also gains some abilities.

Every dungeon lord has a "Flip X" ability, where X is a number from 1-4. The number usually goes up as he levels (and never goes down), but different dungeon lords have different flip numbers at different levels. At the beginning of each dungeon turn, you flip that many cards from the dungeon deck. Allies and equipment go into play, abilities are resolved and discarded.

You roll a die to choose a random player to be marked. The dungeon lord and all dungeon allies will attack that player; in addition, many dungeon cards will make reference to the marked player (or, rarely, non-marked players).

The only other thing of any particular interest is how bosses work. Some dungeon allies have the "boss" ability, and denote the earlier bosses in the dungeon. As long as there's any dungeon ally with "Boss", players may not attack the dungeon lord.

How do heroes level up?

You get experience points for accomplishing certain tasks. For example, 5 XP the first time you run a particular dungeon, and 2 XP for each additional run; 5 XP if you defeat the dungeon, but 2 XP if you fail but still deal at least half damage to the boss. There are a couple other ways to get experience points, and also achievements which you can try to complete for bonus points (e.g. "60 damage among all heroes, and no heroes dead", or "flip the gargoyle event and not have any gargoyle tokens activated.")

1 XP is 1 level; so when you get 10 XP, you're level 10. You get to customize your deck at levels 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, and 80. At level 85 (the max), you get to start the game with 8 cards in your hand.

Customizing your deck involves adding or swapping a limited number of certain cards to your deck. Each of the levels tells you the amount of cards, what kinds, and what rarities they can be.

Honestly, I'm rather disappointed with the level up rules.

How does it play?

Uhh... I dunno. That's why this post is in "General" and not "Reviews."

In closing

Well, that answers the questions I had and couldn't find answers to. Let me know if you're curious about anything and I'll be happy to answer. Keep in mind, as I said, I haven't played this.

My feelings on the product are a bit mixed. I like it in concept, but I think they could have done more to make it a better intro product. I was a big fan of the Assault on Icecrown Citadel boxed set, but I can see why providing a big box with 4 decks might be prohibitive. All the same, in order to really enjoy this product you've got to purchase the dungeon deck itself and 3 class starters.

Given that, I think they really should have gone to more lengths to reduce the price. Actually, I think the price should be comparable to a class starter, rather than almost twice as much. Get rid of all the other cruft and cut them down to just the 60-card deck and dungeon lord cards the same size as normal cards.
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