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Mage Knight Board Game» Forums » General

Subject: Which rulebook to read first? rss

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Jaru Rainn
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Hi all,

So I've preordered a copy of MK and I wanted to read the rules through once before I got the game. Now I see that there's two books, a walk-through and an actual rulebook.

My question is this: Whats the best order to read them in? Is one optional, meaning could I read one and live without reading the other?

Thanks in advance!
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Duke Of Lizards
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Game Walkthrough wrote:
The Rule Book assumes you have read the Walkthrough first
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Guido Gloor
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They both contain most information, but the walkthrough is didactically laid out.

I underestimated the completeness of the rulebook at first - this index is really helpful:

Mage Knight Index

The one thing the main rulebook doesn't contain are the site descriptions and some very special edge rules for them that didn't fit the separate site description cards.
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Mr. Monkey
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When I started playing I just used the walkthrough, pretty much as they laid out in that booklet. Read the first few pages then play along with the game pieces and tiles. The main rulebook is more for reference and to flesh out some of the details that the walkthrough does not go into. Also, for learning the game there are a few threats here on BGG that are immensly helpful like the Official FAQ Thread and the Commonly Missed Rules Thread

Hope that Helps!
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Andy W
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The order I'd recommend is:

1) Read the walkthrough while waiting for the game
2) Go through the walkthrough as you're playing the game the first time
3) Consider looking at the rulebook if you really want to after doing the above two.

From what I've seen, people confuse themselves more by trying to read both the walkthrough and the rules before playing. Most of your questions will be answered after playing through the walkthrough. Plus, if you think you remember seeing a rule while going through the first play and you've gone through both, it makes it twice as hard to find that rule. Having only one book to look through to find rules is a huge help during that first play.
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Marco Chiappa
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.. the one they should have made better....
 
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Bill Hartman
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I highly recommemd doing it as the rulebooks themselves state _ walkthrough first. Read the walkthrough, play the walkthrough and make sure you understand it all, then read the full rulebook imo. At that point, browsing the faq and rules-threads are very, very helpful.

I also recommend both video series by Ricky Wilkins (found in the video sections). They are very easy and engaging and help a lot to get a feel for the game
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Morten Notodden
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As everyone is saying here allready. Go through the Walkthrough first. I went along with it playing two characters the first time and one character and a dummy player the 2nd time. When I was done, I felt as if the Rulebook was more of an encyclopedia than a real rulebook.

What's so great about the Walkthrough is that it actually makes it fun to learn the game. I find it a drag to read big rulebooks with lots of text usually, but this was actually fun and very well laid out so it's easy for the reader to learn.

People say this game is complex. I disagree. I think it's simple, but with many rules. When I was done with the Walkthrough my first thought was that the complexity of this game is overrated.

That was my two cents...
 
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Ilias Sellountos
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postm wrote:
People say this game is complex. I disagree. I think it's simple, but with many rules. When I was done with the Walkthrough my first thought was that the complexity of this game is overrated


It depends on what you compare it with. It is simpler than most of my wargames but more complex than most of my board games. It is not just that there are many rules, there are also a lot of bits and pieces and things you have to remember as you play and take into account as you play and a lot more options and potential routes to victory than your average board game.

Yes, after you have read the walkthrough and played the entire walkthrough game, things seem simpler, but how many games actually require (or provide) an entire game walkthrough just to learn how to play the game?
 
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Morten Notodden
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Shemar wrote:
postm wrote:
People say this game is complex. I disagree. I think it's simple, but with many rules. When I was done with the Walkthrough my first thought was that the complexity of this game is overrated


It depends on what you compare it with. It is simpler than most of my wargames but more complex than most of my board games. It is not just that there are many rules, there are also a lot of bits and pieces and things you have to remember as you play and take into account as you play and a lot more options and potential routes to victory than your average board game.

Yes, after you have read the walkthrough and played the entire walkthrough game, things seem simpler, but how many games actually require (or provide) an entire game walkthrough just to learn how to play the game?


I'm comparing it to the word on the street saying that this is one of the most complex games there is. Tom Vasel called it the most complex game he have played in his review.

This is what I think is unfair and will probably turn many people off. Which is a shame since it's not that hard to learn at all. After going through the tutorial scenario twice alone I allready felt more comfortable with the rules than I did with Arkham Horror after 5-6 plays. I still use the Arkham Horror rulebook ALOT, but in Mage Knight I hardly use it at all.

The well laid out walkthrough should have most of the credit for this and I wish it was more common among the heavier games out there.
 
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Ilias Sellountos
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postm wrote:
I'm comparing it to the word on the street saying that this is one of the most complex games there is. Tom Vasel called it the most complex game he have played in his review.

For most gamers this is probably a fair statement. I would say Mage Knight is more complex than 99% of the (non-wargame) board games I have played in the last few years.

Quote:
This is what I think is unfair and will probably turn many people off. Which is a shame since it's not that hard to learn at all. After going through the tutorial scenario twice alone I allready felt more comfortable with the rules than I did with Arkham Horror after 5-6 plays.

I think you need to take a closer look to what you are saying here. Maybe you have a gaming group that you all play the same games over and over and your perspective is different, but I play games with three different groups and it is very rare that the same game will get played more than once a month. The majority of games can be played with a brief explanation and 1-2 turns of actual gameplay, while by your own admission Mage Knight took two full games, of a scenario especially designed to learn the game. If that is not the definition of a complicated game, I don't know what is.
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Morten Notodden
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Shemar wrote:
postm wrote:
I'm comparing it to the word on the street saying that this is one of the most complex games there is. Tom Vasel called it the most complex game he have played in his review.

For most gamers this is probably a fair statement. I would say Mage Knight is more complex than 99% of the (non-wargame) board games I have played in the last few years.

Quote:
This is what I think is unfair and will probably turn many people off. Which is a shame since it's not that hard to learn at all. After going through the tutorial scenario twice alone I allready felt more comfortable with the rules than I did with Arkham Horror after 5-6 plays.

I think you need to take a closer look to what you are saying here. Maybe you have a gaming group that you all play the same games over and over and your perspective is different, but I play games with three different groups and it is very rare that the same game will get played more than once a month. The majority of games can be played with a brief explanation and 1-2 turns of actual gameplay, while by your own admission Mage Knight took two full games, of a scenario especially designed to learn the game. If that is not the definition of a complicated game, I don't know what is.


You raise a fair point. I think we both agree that this is not a lightweight game when it comes to rules and learning them. The learning curve is steep and it will take a few plays to be confident. And it's certainly more complicated than most of the games in my shelf as well. But it's not as hard as many will have you believe. Agree?

Maybe I'm just nitpicking and just hung up with the fact that people use the word "complex" and "complicated" over a statement like "lots of rules". I don't necessarily think they're the same.

Like a spider web. It has many strings, but the construction itself is fairly simple. If the same ammount threads were all over the place without any apparent system I would call it complex or complicated.
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Morten Notodden
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Then again, maybe I underestimate the complexity because I felt it was presented to me so well and efficiently in the walkthrough.
 
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Ilias Sellountos
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postm wrote:
But it's not as hard as many will have you believe. Agree?

It really is relative. I once saw a girl saying that she is slowly getting to grips with Settlers of Catan. For someone like her Mage Knight is way too complicated. On the other potential end, I often play wargames with 80 page rulebooks and I just finished reading the rules for the latest Starfire (400+ pages). So for me, and probably anyone willing to invest several hours to go through the tutorial and learn the game, it is not at the complicated end of the spectrum.
 
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Morten Notodden
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Fair enough
 
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