Bryce K. Nielsen
United States
Elk Ridge
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I will say this about theme, Drizzt is the best of the three. I never felt what you did in Ravenloft. All the bits seemed to point to a haunted castle with vampires and undead, but when we actually sat down and played all of that went away. It never really felt like what it was trying to be. I think the mechanics distracted us too much. But with Drizzt, each adventure I've played it feels like crawling around in caverns and for the most part, very little in the way of distractions.

-shnar
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Nate Rethorn
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Perrysburg
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As a fan of the setting, I loved this game. It's light, easy to pick up rules-wise, and addictive. I gave a copy to my brother for Christmas and my family played it three or four times during the holidays. Can't wait to try it again.
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ketchupgun
Canada
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So is it safe to say getting all three games and mashing them altogether works like a charm if you don't mind watering down he theme?
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Frank The Tank
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Twin Cities
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Ya I mashed all three together and tweaked some things here and there and my play group loves it. They could care less about a bear spawning in a tile with a coffin in it or a vampire spawning next to a lava vent. It helps make all the treasures, encounters, monsters, etc., by making them more rare and gives the games we play more of a variety.
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Vayda
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New Jersey
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Nice review!

Agreed that it would be nice to see some more support from Wizards for the series. I love making stuff up for this series, but it's nice to not have to think now and again.

Question-- 2 treasure decks in CR?! I think the fortunes and items are shuffled into one deck.

And yes, there are silly names- but Guenhwyvar is actually an old form of Jennifer.
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Tristan Hall
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Manchester
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LIFEFORM - LATE PLEDGE NOW!!!
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LIFEFORM - LATE PLEDGE NOW!!!
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virferrorum wrote:
Question-- 2 treasure decks in CR?! I think the fortunes and items are shuffled into one deck.


Think he was talking about the 'Treasures' and 'Adventure Treasures'.
 
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James

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Great article... would have to agree... However, recently I was introduced to Gears of War... and tnat game has raised the bar on the AI of the monsters...
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K.Y. Wong
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With typically only 3 types of enemies for each scenario, GoW certainly had to force each enemy to be capable of reacting to more situations, even if it means continually drawing from the AI deck for a valid card.

For me, the 8-10 types of enemies in the D&D games, presents a much more interesting and varied collective AI to deal with, depending on the mix that randomly appears for each game, not to mention providing many possibilies when considering custom adventures.
 
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Anders Pedersen
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chromaticdragon wrote:
With typically only 3 types of enemies for each scenario, GoW certainly had to force each enemy to be capable of reacting to more situations, even if it means continually drawing from the AI deck for a valid card.

For me, the 8-10 types of enemies in the D&D games, presents a much more interesting and varied collective AI to deal with, depending on the mix that randomly appears for each game, not to mention providing many possibilies when considering custom adventures.

I believe the point is how much more interesting the D&D series would be if the monsters had a more varied AI, on top of the amount of different monsters.


 
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K.Y. Wong
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dbc- wrote:
I believe the point is how much more interesting the D&D series would be if the monsters had a more varied AI, on top of the amount of different monsters.

It IS more varied, with a typically diverse number of monsters on the board at any one time, creating a collective threat that can cause unpleasant surprises. It's even more so if you consider all 3 games in the series, with each game having different sets of monsters with their own unique AI, which explains why each game feels different when played, considering there is no change in the rules.
Of course, GoW could just as easily introduce twice the number of monsters and double the AI cards for the sake of variety, but I believe that would push the game into impractical playtimes.
 
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Anders Pedersen
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chromaticdragon wrote:
dbc- wrote:
I believe the point is how much more interesting the D&D series would be if the monsters had a more varied AI, on top of the amount of different monsters.

It IS more varied, with a typically diverse number of monsters on the board at any one time, creating a collective threat that can cause unpleasant surprises. It's even more so if you consider all 3 games in the series, with each game having different sets of monsters with their own unique AI, which explains why each game feels different when played, considering there is no change in the rules.
Of course, GoW could just as easily introduce twice the number of monsters and double the AI cards for the sake of variety, but I believe that would push the game into impractical playtimes.

I can only talk from my experience with CR and WoA. But in those games I have been disappointed by how little out-of-the-box thinking has gone into monster design.
In CR, the Wraith is interesting, as it gives wounds to the heroes on the same tile, when destroyed. So you have to think about position, when engaging or moving it around. The rest of the monsters are just a mix between speed, hitpoints, damage etc.
In WoA they copied Klank's scounting ability and gave it to 2 types of monsters. But the rest of the bunch is, once again, a simple mix of stats. The Demons are annoying, as they all spawn at the same time, but there is nothing interesting in the design.

Now, I may be spoiled by having played Heroscape for many years. But that game has shown how much can be done with a simple system, without bugging down play time or increasing complexity. Every time a new wave was released, I was surprised by how they continued to bend and flex the system, to come up with new interesting units and heroes.
For that reason I am looking forward to the coming D&D skirmish game, as some of the Heroscape designers are credited for the design. I am hoping it will be the same people that will be making the adventure game powers for the monsters. Time will tell...

But back to LoD - how are the monster design, this time around? Any surprises, or am I more likely to feel it is more of the same?

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K.Y. Wong
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WoA was practically defined by the monster design which made the game feel very different from CR and actually overshadowed the villains in the game. If you did not appreciate the differences between CR and WoA monsters, I think you would definitely feel the same for LoD or for that matter, any future game based on these rules.

Heroscape is a competitive game so the units would actually parallel the heroes (player-controlled) in the D&D games which have continued to push what is possible in these games. I use the Heroscape stats as a reference for my custom monsters and I've found that the concepts are quite easily replicated in the D&D games. They only appear more complex (aka interesting) due to the base rules which includes more detailed tactical considerations like engagement, flying, opposing dice rolls and order markers. Converted as a set of behaviours, the villains in CR, with an equally comparable text space on the card, would be more varied in their tactics.

I've tried Dungeon Command, the new skirmish game, and loved it! (A hint that you probably won't like it? ) It is structured very differently from Heroscape. There is an action deck with abilities that can be used by any monster with a matching keyword. The unit cards have, therefore, VERY simple stats which in any case, represent traits rather than behaviour. To me, it feels more like Summoner Wars and quite different from Heroscape.
 
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Bryce K. Nielsen
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Elk Ridge
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I've found the D&D game to be a lot more predictable than the GOW system. While you may not know what monster is coming up, once you see the monster, you can counter its tactics in a very predictable manner. In GOW, you may know what types of AI cards that Locust has, but you never really know what will be turned over. Card Counting is tricky and usually you only remember one specific card (Distraction anyone?). So in play, GOW's AI system leads to a much less predictable, if not highly varied (you are limited to 3 locust types).

-shnar
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Goddammit! Quality and on time delivery are not mutually exclusive!
United States
Shelby Township
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Jupiter's C#ck, that's a great review!
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Marko Paunović
Croatia
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Does anyone know are there any plans on the 4th game in this serial ? I have all three of them combined and it's awesome : ) . But i would really like to add some new monsters/heroes
 
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