Recommend
15 
 Thumb up
 Hide
19 Posts

Elder Sign» Forums » Reviews

Subject: What you may already know rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Travis R. Chance
United States
Fishers
Indiana
flag msg tools
designer
publisher
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'll keep it short because so many others before me have covered my feelings on the game. First of all, yes, this game is a bit easy. It's easy to learn, easy to master, hard to lose, but it's still a lot of fun! Ideally, this is for the kind of person who's trying ween their friends in on a less complicated Cthulhu-themed game before busting out their dusty Arkham Horror game they never got to play because their friends aren't nerdy or into Lovecraft stuff enough. This game is also for game groups that want to be hardcore and play things like Arkham Horror, but frankly cannot spare the time to play the same game for 3-4 hours. Finally, this game is for hardcore fans of Mansions and Madness and Arkham Horror who just need a simple diversion every now and then.

In completing this job, this game succeeds beautifully.

However, there are issues with the game. The biggest issue is difficulty. It's not difficult. That's fine, but it's quite a switch from FFG's usual Cthulhu games that it can be a bit disappointing. The solution of course will likely (hopefully) come in future expansions, but it's hard to say because it's been out for a little while now and they haven't announced anything. Mansions of Madness hasn't been out long at all and it already has four expansions. That title came out in like March of this year.

Anyway, is the game worth getting without an expansion? Yes, absolutely. It does its job with flying colors and that's really all I can ask for. I'm a hardcore board gamer living abroad surrounded by casual gamers with no knowledge of the mythos. For me, this game is a godsend. It scratches that old Arkham Horror itch brilliantly.

Everyone will have their own reasons for buying this game, but that's just it... everyone has a reason to buy this title because of its many levels of appeal. Buy it, enjoy it, have a good night!
11 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Raciborski
United States
Newport News
Virginia
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Have you read the FAQ posted by FFG? Check their website. One of my complains about all those many reviews of this game in the past was everyone was playing with a different interruption of the rules.Too easy, to hard, who knows.

Frankly,I am sick of the game and have not messed with it since the FAQ was released. Four months was a little to long. Maybe when the bad taste leaves I might give it another try or Ebay it writing it off and thinking of FGG and its business model. Nice the second printing is coming out. Wonder if they will offer a new rulebook,and replacement cards, cheap, to fix the typos in my box. I am sure the 1st edition will not be worth much.

My one sentence review of this game.
This was a very disappointing game out of the box.

6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Leigh
United Kingdom
Richmond
North Yorkshire
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I with the OP.

Okay, it's a bit easy, but it is good fun. The few small errors are not a problem, we had great fun with the game straight away and I'm still looking forward to my next game.

Instant appeal straight out of the box!
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rob White
United States
Richmond
Virginia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I've never played Arkham Horror, read Lovecraft, or been into horror movies, etc. But I've loved my copy of Elder Sign so much that today I ordered the 16 investigator minis from Fantasy Flight.

I got lucky though because the game arrived at my door the same day the FAQ was released. I definitely would have been frustrated to get the game on "opening day" and have things as confusing as they are.

I was also lucky because I got to play the iPad game for a few days before I got "real" game. So the rules mostly made sense to me.

I'll be keeping the game for a while because my son enjoys it and it plays well solo. For me, that's a quality combination.

Rob
5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Anthony Reynolds
United States
Greenwood
South Carolina
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
trouvere wrote:
I with the OP.

Okay, it's a bit easy, but it is good fun. The few small errors are not a problem, we had great fun with the game straight away and I'm still looking forward to my next game.

Instant appeal straight out of the box!


A few small errors doesn't take 6 pages of faqs and erratas to fix...

danamark wrote:
Have you read the FAQ posted by FFG? Check their website. One of my complains about all those many reviews of this game in the past was everyone was playing with a different interruption of the rules.Too easy, to hard, who knows.

Frankly,I am sick of the game and have not messed with it since the FAQ was released. Four months was a little to long. Maybe when the bad taste leaves I might give it another try or Ebay it writing it off and thinking of FGG and its business model. Nice the second printing is coming out. Wonder if they will offer a new rulebook,and replacement cards, cheap, to fix the typos in my box. I am sure the 1st edition will not be worth much.

My one sentence review of this game.
This was a very disappointing game out of the box.


My experience exactly. Agree 100%.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rob White
United States
Richmond
Virginia
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Also, I'm trying to make things a little bit harder by randomizing the placement of monsters (with a die). And making sure that all locations have a monster before giving a location a second monster. The idea of restricting movement so investigators can't just move anywhere they choose seems interesting, but I haven't tried it yet.

Rob
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Leigh
United Kingdom
Richmond
North Yorkshire
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
The six pages of FAQ set out in detail several matters which are fairly obvious in the end.

Our group played everything just right, from the original rulebook with only two exceptions. The exceptions are both errata, where either a rule was not-updated before final release or changed as an after-thought after release. These are the spell casting rule and the slight alteration to three of the characters.

I can understand people not liking the game - each to their own after all! However, blaming the rulebook doesn't wash for me as we managed absolutely fine.

5 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Anthony Reynolds
United States
Greenwood
South Carolina
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
trouvere wrote:
The six pages of FAQ set out in detail several matters which are fairly obvious in the end.

Our group played everything just right, from the original rulebook with only two exceptions. The exceptions are both errata, where either a rule was not-updated before final release or changed as an after-thought after release. These are the spell casting rule and the slight alteration to three of the characters.

I can understand people not liking the game - each to their own after all! However, blaming the rulebook doesn't wash for me as we managed absolutely fine.



Is the game not an extension of its rules... Without the rules there is no game. You can argue your opinion on the extent to which the rules are poor, but you can not honestly claim that the rules were sufficient as written.

Glad to hear you got everything right off the bat. I can't say we had the same experience and you can't tell me otherwise. I can't see FFG just deciding to take the time to come up with 6 pages of meaningless clarification if there wasn't problems to begin with...

I get that you like the game. I liked the game too. I even took the time to modify a plano box to house all the games components, even the clock. However, the more we played the game the more loopholes presented themselves. So much that I haven't played it in some time and will probably not pull it out again even though the FAQ solves all the problems that I can recall having with the game.

I blame the rulebook whether it washes with you or not.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Mark Raciborski
United States
Newport News
Virginia
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
KnagrocK wrote:
trouvere wrote:
The six pages of FAQ set out in detail several matters which are fairly obvious in the end.

Our group played everything just right, from the original rulebook with only two exceptions. The exceptions are both errata, where either a rule was not-updated before final release or changed as an after-thought after release. These are the spell casting rule and the slight alteration to three of the characters.

I can understand people not liking the game - each to their own after all! However, blaming the rulebook doesn't wash for me as we managed absolutely fine.



Is the game not an extension of its rules... Without the rules there is no game. You can argue your opinion on the extent to which the rules are poor, but you can not honestly claim that the rules were sufficient as written.

Glad to hear you got everything right off the bat. I can't say we had the same experience and you can't tell me otherwise. I can't see FFG just deciding to take the time to come up with 6 pages of meaningless clarification if there wasn't problems to begin with...

I get that you like the game. I liked the game too. I even took the time to modify a plano box to house all the games components, even the clock. However, the more we played the game the more loopholes presented themselves. So much that I haven't played it in some time and will probably not pull it out again even though the FAQ solves all the problems that I can recall having with the game.

I blame the rulebook whether it washes with you or not.


Yeah, talk to my wife. You keep flipping the rules of a game and in this case with "combination and permutation" changes and you will get accused of cheating. I am not sure how one could figure out, second guess when to play a "spell" before or after the roll? I do think this matters a lot.

One reason she dislikes this crap is she seems to win a lot and when fuzzy rules come up in other games, I am behind. :) So I must be cheating????

I guess I am just not bright enough to second guess a designer's thoughts, maybe in my next life, this neatly ignoring the fact of FFG shoddy proof reading and I spent $30 plus bucks on this. My thoughts using my second guessing here and reading FFG's thoughts, the Fanboy(s) will keep us in business no matter what we produce so lets just phone another in. Kind of like watching Letterman.

I am very happy to have contributed to the Kickstart of the second printing. Just wished FFG had told me. I didn't even get a micro badge offer from them. :(


3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrew
United States
Washington
flag msg tools
trouvere wrote:
The six pages of FAQ set out in detail several matters which are fairly obvious in the end.



QFT. I recall some very clear examples of a "FAQ" that are clearly in the rulebook.

KnagrocK wrote:
Is the game not an extension of its rules... Without the rules there is no game. You can argue your opinion on the extent to which the rules are poor, but you can not honestly claim that the rules were sufficient as written.



I'm not a big Cthulhu fan by any means (which may be why I don't have a problem with the game) but I just got it the other day. When I initially printed off the FAQ I was a little apprehensive about the size. But after reading through it and the rulebook, it seems only a few key changes are in it.

*Page 1 is a cover sheet, so really it's only a 5 page document.
*Page 2 has several errata changes. Some are key, but none are really bad.
*Page 3 starts the FAQs. 9 of the 11 questions presented are either clearly written in the rules or a very natural extension (such as not being able to use the red die twice in one roll).
*Page 4 is better. I would say about half the information provided is new. Oh, and check it out, a picture. So maybe a third page in text is needed.
*Page 5: Best question ever: Can you Focus and assist on the same roll? I like this one, because the rules clearly state you can do one or the other. Anyways, I don't think anything on this page is too necessary, but I'll say a third is needed in case I missed something.
*Page 6 has another few questions that are good. I'd say a quarter of this page.

So, imho (though it probably isn't reading humble, sorry for that) is that this "6 page FAQ" that must mean the game is horrible only really has approximately 2 pages of updates and then 3 pages of additional info.

Yes, the rulebook directly influences the game. And I will agree that the rulebook was a little tough to get through, but you can't really claim that they had to fix everything in the game or that it was insufficient due to the FAQ size.

I'll also note that it seemed pretty easy for my girlfriend to pass tasks (she could discard a card to get both dice pretty much all the time).

So, while my opinion on whether the purchase was good or not isn't fully formed, I think it's a bit flawed to claim the FAQ shows the rulebook was full of errors.

Complete sidenote, why didn't they make the FAQs' dimensions able to fit in the box?
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Leigh
United Kingdom
Richmond
North Yorkshire
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I hope that you get into the game Andrew. It's a fun filler and certainly has been keeping us entertained over the last month. My partner wants to play this game practically everytime she agrees to game.




2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Leigh
United Kingdom
Richmond
North Yorkshire
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
KnagrocK wrote:


I get that you like the game. I liked the game too. I even took the time to modify a plano box to house all the games components, even the clock. However, the more we played the game the more loopholes presented themselves. So much that I haven't played it in some time and will probably not pull it out again even though the FAQ solves all the problems that I can recall having with the game.

I blame the rulebook whether it washes with you or not.


Except for FFG dropping the ball with the spell rule, I can't see what problems you are referring to.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Anthony Reynolds
United States
Greenwood
South Carolina
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
VTSvsAlucard wrote:
trouvere wrote:
The six pages of FAQ set out in detail several matters which are fairly obvious in the end.



QFT. I recall some very clear examples of a "FAQ" that are clearly in the rulebook.

KnagrocK wrote:
Is the game not an extension of its rules... Without the rules there is no game. You can argue your opinion on the extent to which the rules are poor, but you can not honestly claim that the rules were sufficient as written.



I'm not a big Cthulhu fan by any means (which may be why I don't have a problem with the game) but I just got it the other day. When I initially printed off the FAQ I was a little apprehensive about the size. But after reading through it and the rulebook, it seems only a few key changes are in it.

*Page 1 is a cover sheet, so really it's only a 5 page document.
*Page 2 has several errata changes. Some are key, but none are really bad.
*Page 3 starts the FAQs. 9 of the 11 questions presented are either clearly written in the rules or a very natural extension (such as not being able to use the red die twice in one roll).
*Page 4 is better. I would say about half the information provided is new. Oh, and check it out, a picture. So maybe a third page in text is needed.
*Page 5: Best question ever: Can you Focus and assist on the same roll? I like this one, because the rules clearly state you can do one or the other. Anyways, I don't think anything on this page is too necessary, but I'll say a third is needed in case I missed something.
*Page 6 has another few questions that are good. I'd say a quarter of this page.

So, imho (though it probably isn't reading humble, sorry for that) is that this "6 page FAQ" that must mean the game is horrible only really has approximately 2 pages of updates and then 3 pages of additional info.

Yes, the rulebook directly influences the game. And I will agree that the rulebook was a little tough to get through, but you can't really claim that they had to fix everything in the game or that it was insufficient due to the FAQ size.

I'll also note that it seemed pretty easy for my girlfriend to pass tasks (she could discard a card to get both dice pretty much all the time).

So, while my opinion on whether the purchase was good or not isn't fully formed, I think it's a bit flawed to claim the FAQ shows the rulebook was full of errors.

Complete sidenote, why didn't they make the FAQs' dimensions able to fit in the box?


I never claimed the FAQ showed that the rulebook was full of errors. I claimed that our experience with the game prior to the FAQ release showed, in typical FFG fashion, that the rulebook had more errors than I could appreciate.

I mean really, you quoted me but I don't know who your talking to. I haven't made a single complaint about the FAQ. In fact what I did say was:

KnagrocK wrote:
However, the more we played the game the more loopholes presented themselves. So much that I haven't played it in some time and will probably not pull it out again even though the FAQ solves all the problems that I can recall having with the game.


Perhaps you should have read more than the first two sentences of my post...

As for trouvere... What can I say:

trouvere wrote:
Okay, it's a bit easy, but it is good fun. The few small errors are not a problem, we had great fun with the game straight away and I'm still looking forward to my next game.


trouvere wrote:
Our group played everything just right, from the original rulebook with only two exceptions. The exceptions are both errata, where either a rule was not-updated before final release or changed as an after-thought after release. These are the spell casting rule and the slight alteration to three of the characters.


trouvere wrote:
Except for FFG dropping the ball with the spell rule, I can't see what problems you are referring to.


Funny how it went from a few errors, to two, to one... But, that's how the mind of a Fan Boy operates. You can't change my experience, so go have another beer and just enjoy your copy of Elder Sign.

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Paul Leigh
United Kingdom
Richmond
North Yorkshire
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Behave yourself.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Andrew
United States
Washington
flag msg tools
KnagrocK wrote:


I never claimed the FAQ showed that the rulebook was full of errors. I claimed that our experience with the game prior to the FAQ release showed, in typical FFG fashion, that the rulebook had more errors than I could appreciate.

[q="KnagrocK"]However, the more we played the game the more loopholes presented themselves. So much that I haven't played it in some time and will probably not pull it out again even though the FAQ solves all the problems that I can recall having with the game.



I did read your posts, all of them. The quotes I was specifically referring too was "A few small errors doesn't take 6 pages of faqs and erratas to fix..." It seemed your comment on insufficient rules was based on the FAQ size. If this is not the case, I am sorry for being mistaken. I do know what you mean after looking at the insanely large BSG FAQ.

Regardless, we all have our own opinions, and I do agree with you that when you purchase a board game some money goes to the components and a lot of it is for the ruleset. Spending money on something you find lacking in quality/completion is never a good feeling. I sincerely hope you either find the houserules to improve the game for you or someone offering a good trade!

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Anthony Reynolds
United States
Greenwood
South Carolina
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb

I appreciate your attempt to understand where I am coming from, but I think you are still missing the mark. You got the game and downloaded the FAQ the same day. However the FAQ was not available until late December and we got our copy mid September. So, we didn't have the FAQ for the duration of our play time with Elder Sign, and the game with the included rules alone had many mechanical interactions that were unspecified by them among other errors. If you search through the forums you will see that the result of this was that everyone was playing the game differently. By the time the FAQ came out we were sufficiently dissatisfied with Elder Sign.

I hope that better explains what I was trying to convey. The only comment I really made in this forum was just agreeing with danamarks' feelings about the game, being that he described the same experience we had.

I think you will enjoy the game. The FAQ serves its purpose very well. However by now I have moved on to better things.

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Dave Maynor
United States
Peachtree City
Georgia
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
For anyone reading these threads... just wanted to chime in.

As a fan of all horror, and especially zombies or Lovecraft... I finally picked this up. I like AH (not love, because sometimes it is still just too much work). I wanted this game to hit the theme, and be a bit more approachable.

I grabbed it while on a business trip. Now, if I am going to play ANYTHING solo, it will normally be a PC game, or a computer version of a card/board game against PC opponents. I never board game solo, I just can't normally get 'into it'. This game I played solo, and loved it.

There were some timing issues I saw, and some thing I made up my mind how "I" would play it. It wasn't until after playing that i read the FAQ. And I was pretty damn close on all counts.

yes, the game is a bit easier. But with our 'success rate' with AH (if you can call it that without laughing) it is nice to have a game that gives you a chance. Sure, maybe some lucky rolls makes it too much of a chance, but it is still a nice change of pace.

But I loved it because I really like the theme (the theme is there), and I am not a rules lawyer. I am not inferring being anal retentive about the rules, but I can play very loose with a game and enjoy it for what it is. I am OK with abstract games that have very nebulous rules interactions. I think many people who do not like the rules for this are more rules sticklers than I might be.

I think in general, if you are a roleplayer type, or if you love this theme, but the order of every minute interaction doesn't break a games balance for you, you will love this. Obviously if you don't like games where die rolls can win or lose it, this is not your game. I also think if you are an old school Star Fleet Battles type, or love your WWII tank simulations that factor windage and armor penetration... this won't be detailed enough for you.

And that's fine. I even think if you truly love Arkham Horror, this may not be your game. If you love the complexity, and feel the time spend adds to the depth, this game will feel too light. But if you love AH for the theme, but wish it was over in half the time and felt less like work... this could be your cup of tea.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Linda Baldwin
United States
White Plains
New York
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
I love Arkham Horror, am anxious to break out Mansions of Madness, but this one ... first play was kind of disappointing.

Forget the challenge level. It seemed overwhelming at first (especially since we had some bad luck with locked dice), but in the end, it just seemed incredibly easy. But that wasn't my problem.

Forget the rules issues. OK, the rules made my head hurt, and I can set up and play AH in my sleep. Things seemed to be explained in the most counterintuitive, out of order fashion, and I hadn't found the FAQ yet (if it even existed then.) But nope, that wasn't it either.

It's a Lovecraft game. It needs one thing, in spades -- THEME! And ... I didn't see it. I'm doing what? Collecting terrors? Oh no, I need one more peril to ... what? Oh, great, I have this magical thingamajigit, well if I run into a hideous monster ... No, just throw it away and you have a better chance of finding the peril you need. You know what -- I think I'll just head to the Lost and Found, and see what happens. Or, you know, check out the souvenir shop for weapons, or see if there's a shrink hanging out at the entrance -- at midnight.

Maybe we should have spent more time with the flavor text. Maybe the 12-hour day confused me. But I just didn't get that cozy, terrified Lovecraftian feel while "resolving adventures." I don't have this problem with AH; even when I get wildly illogical results, I can someone weave them into a story. But this? Nothing.

Without having played Mansions yet, it's like they split AH into two games, putting the difficulty and roleplaying aspects into Mansions, and what's leftover -- game mechanics, easy goals -- into Elder Sign. I'm not done with it yet, but I'm concerned. Maybe solo I can make something out of it.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bob T
United States
Mantua (near Woodbury)
New Jersey
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Found a cure for the "ease" of victory...

First off, use the rule that a Clue should only let you re-roll one die-then play against Ithaqua for a tough game or Shub Niggurath for an absolute nightmare. I think Shub would be tough even without the one-die Clue rule. They're the only 2 really difficult AOs I've played against - haven't gotten to them all yet.

Some of the Ancient Ones' abilities don't really amount to much- they really need Heralds (included with the new expansions? Hint hint hope FFG's listening)

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.