Recommend
11 
 Thumb up
 Hide
21 Posts

Talisman (Revised 4th Edition)» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Potentially (almost) infinite loop rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Lance Lindley
Japan
Zushi
Kanagawa
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Played the base game (no expansions) last night with my three sons, ages 5, 8 and 13. We encountered a "perfect storm" of conditions that led to the game being almost stuck in a near-infinite loop had the 13-year-old not decided to gang up on the 8-year-old to take him down.

The situation:

* I was in the Crown Room casting the Command Spell on my turns.

* The 13 year old was roaming the board as normal, trying to get to the Crown Room himself to stop me.

* The 5 year old had been eliminated by a combination of Command Spell hits and encounters.

* The 8 year old happened to be of Good alignment, standing on the fields space next to the Chapel, having just drawn the Poltergeist, which of course means he never rolls for movement, just moves one space in any direction on his turn.

From this point, the turns went like this:

- I cast Command Spell
- 8 year old steps into Chapel and heals to full health for free
- 13 year old does whatever
- I cast Command Spell
- 8 year old steps out of Chapel into fields and draws encounter
- 13 year old does whatever
- I cast Command Spell
- 8 year old steps back into Chapel and heals to full health for free

While I would have eventually been able to eliminate the 13 year old, there was no way from my perch in the Crown Room that I could do anything to stop the 8 year old from healing to full health every second turn. I had no spells, and I didn't dare leave the room (I had one health) and try to fight my way all the way back to him to take his poltergeist (I had the sorceress), then trudge back the the Crown Room one space at a time, etc.

To break this loop without interference from another player, we would have to cycle all the way through the Adventure Deck and a reshuffle until he hit one of the TWO adventure cards that would turn him evil so he couldn't heal at the chapel (ironically, he was the evil Wizard, but had been turned good by an earlier event).

What ended up happening was that out of boredom the two brothers started fighting each other, and the 13-year-old first cast Immobilize on the 8 year old, which let me get one extra hit on him (taking him down to one life while in the fields), and then cast Hex on the Chapel so he would lose that one remaining life if he entered to heal. Even that required me to roll three successful Command Spells in a row to get him down to one life so the Hex would kill -- and not just further wound -- him.

So, I thought that was an interesting loophole that almost forced a lengthy stalemate while we would have trudged through the deck waiting for one of the cards that would break the loop. It's not exactly a design "flaw" as much as a legitimately fortunate set of ideal circumstances for the Poltergeist player that force the Crown Room player to either abandon the crown room and come out and challenge him directly or else wait out a lengthy and repetitive draw session.

While it's unlikely to happen very often (character must be of Good alignment, must have Poltergeist, and must be close enough to the Chapel to reach it before dying) we are considering placing a house rule on the Poltergeist that prevents a character from constantly making the same set of moves over and over.
7 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Aswin Agastya
Indonesia
Bekasi
Jawa Barat
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Yeah, these things happen I'd just laugh it off and called it a day.
4 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bart de Groot
United Kingdom
Oxfordshire
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Sounds to me like a draw.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Elliott Eastoe
United Kingdom
Street
Somerset
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I disagree. A partial victory for the player at the Crown of Command, definitely!

Ell.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gert Meyer
Denmark
Trekantsområdet
flag msg tools
badge
Skål - Cheers - Gom Bui - Prost - Almien - Salut - Kampai - Na Zdrowie - Gan Bae - Qapla
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
An adult should probably have conceded defeat, but good luck explaining that concept to an 8-year old.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Martin Presley
United States
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Just a funny observation, this is truly infinite with the Druid, as he can always just change back to good. Still only using vanilla Talisman too!
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Elliott Eastoe
United Kingdom
Street
Somerset
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
The scenario would less likely happen if you had all of the Adventure Cards from the Talisman Expansions Sets!

Elliott.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert Cannon
United States
Cumming
GA
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I could have sworn that I just read something that said you cannot heal once someone reaches the Crown of Command, but I can't find it now.

EDIT: Found it. The Frostmarch expansion has several different ending cards. One of the is titled "Crown and Sceptre" and it is slightly different from original rules in that there is no dice roll needed to cast the spell. It also has this paragraph at the bottom:

"Once a character reached the Crown of Command, characters cannot heal or gain life for the rest of the game. If all other characters are killed, the character on the Crown wins the game!"

So, not an official rule, but a variant that takes care of this possibility.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Gert Meyer
Denmark
Trekantsområdet
flag msg tools
badge
Skål - Cheers - Gom Bui - Prost - Almien - Salut - Kampai - Na Zdrowie - Gan Bae - Qapla
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
robcannonsoftware wrote:
I could have sworn that I just read something that said you cannot heal once someone reaches the Crown of Command, but I can't find it now.
That has been mentioned before on this site as a house rule. Probably where you remember it from.

I remember reading about someone who played with the rule that once someone has reached the crown you could no longer heal life (but still gain it). Seems like a good way to prevent the infinite loop problem as well as speed up the end game slightly on average.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
jumbit
China
Zhejiang
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
IIRC, when casting the Command spell, the instruction is "lose a life or admit defeat". A gracious player would see that there is no chance of winning, and admit defeat. A munchkin would laugh while breaking the game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert Loblah
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
designer
mb
This doesn't break the game. You can't kill someone with the Command Spell? Too bad! Guess you'll have to come down and do it the old fashioned way...
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Elliott Eastoe
United Kingdom
Street
Somerset
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Bobloblah wrote:
This doesn't break the game. You can't kill someone with the Command Spell? Too bad! Guess you'll have to come down and do it the old fashioned way...
Can't do that in revised 4th though!

Ell.
2 
 Thumb up
0.25
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Bart de Groot
United Kingdom
Oxfordshire
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
What is so wrong with a draw? Lots of games allow for a draw. Why MUST one win every game? It's a rare set of circumstances unlikely to happen again, so someone can win next time.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Martin Presley
United States
California
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
bdegroot wrote:
What is so wrong with a draw? Lots of games allow for a draw. Why MUST one win every game? It's a rare set of circumstances unlikely to happen again, so someone can win next time.
Because this is AMERITRASH, damn it!
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rauli Kettunen
Finland
Oulu
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Exactly. Whole end revolves around ELIMINATING the other players. Hell, you attack attack other characters anytime you land on them if you want. If you can kill someone before the end and have them start from stratch, that's one character less to worry about at the end.

While Sacred Pool expansion didn't thrill me enough to buy it, it and the new Blood Moon add two of the crappiest variant endings IMO.

SP's Judgment Day:



Shared victories? GTFO!

BM's Lightbearers:



Co-op Talisman? Why? There are already plenty of actual co-ops, why waste a card on a co-op ending?

Luckily, BM redeems itself by giving us:



devil

Now, THAT's a proper random ending for Talisman.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Robert Loblah
Canada
Toronto
Ontario
flag msg tools
designer
mb
talismanamsilat wrote:
Bobloblah wrote:
This doesn't break the game. You can't kill someone with the Command Spell? Too bad! Guess you'll have to come down and do it the old fashioned way...
Can't do that in revised 4th though!

Ell.
Holy cow! Really? We totally missed that, and have dealt with the OP's issue in exactly the fashion I mentioned.

EDIT: Just checked the rulebook, and right you are! So much for our old-school proclivities. Thumb and tip for you!
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ray
Thailand
Bangkok
Bangkok
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
In situations like this, we just call the game and the winner is the one standing on the Crown of Command. Or if the players all agree, a draw. Regardless, rather than going through the time consuming process of a possible stalemate situation, we just start a new game.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Rob W
United States
Rochester
Minnesota
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmb
I had a game in this situation end with a loss for the person on the Crown of Command a while back. The outside character was a druid (with a poltergeist) stepping on and off a Woods space with a Healer on it. He just cycled spells until he got enough healing spells to keep him alive as he sprinted through the dungeon (by this point he had more than enough strength to slaughter the LoD and make it to the Crown).

It took about an hour of relatively fast play, but the druid had a plan so we waited it out. Any number of cards could have stopped him, but between his heals and some luck with poor rolls by the character on the Crown, he managed to get there with two life left and win the fight.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Alex F
Israel
Ashdod
Negev
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
That's exactly why we houseruled that any characters plagued by restricitve movement effects(toads, poltergeist and blizzard victims) choose a single direction of movement until the effect wears off.

 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Ross G
United States
Bakersfield
California
flag msg tools
I had this one happen today, only worse.

Me: Elf, good, at Crown of Command
Opponent #3: Druid, evil, Poltergeisted, on the Warlock corner
Other opponents dead

Through an odd coincidence, the Warlock corner had the Grail and the Holy Lance sitting on it, the desert was empty, and the field next to the chasm was empty. The Druid had no Water Bottle and could not pick up the Grail (being evil).

I roll Crown of Command, hit the Druid for one life. He moves to the field next to the chasm and draws... the Healer.

After that, exact same situation: I cast Command, he dies (or not), he moves to the Warlock, I cast Command, he dies (or not), he moves to the Healer.

We called it a draw which annoyed TF out of me because I'd never won as an Elf before. yuk
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
mathias van butsele
France
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
In case of that precise situation we set a homerule that :

The character going on such a loop has to find a way to reach the Crown.

Whenever he starts his turn with full lives (the Crowned character did not roll 4-6), he must attempt to either do the climb of the Inner Region if he feels stronger than its owner, or to find a way on the board to be that stronger. If the Adventure deck would be exhausted, the surviving players either declare it a Draw or determine an agreement on who is winning/deserving this.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls