Freelance Police
United States
Palo Alto
California
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Introduction: I found it interesting that Superfly disliked the game so much, while MerricB says how strategic the game is. As a sucker for pretty alternative painted bits, I stopped by Game Kastle for a promo figure and an opportunity to learn the game without reading the rule book first. Only four people attended, but it seems that the FLGS wasn't hit by the buzz BGG was.

Magic the Gathering on a 2D board: You can grok the rules from Superfly and MerricB's reviews, but, basically, DC felt quite a bit like Magic. Instead of creatures, you have miniatures. Instead of sorceries and interrupts, you had order cards. It's a mixture of public and private information. It's not dice-tense in that you're not praying for a favorable roll. It's Magic-test in that you're hoping your opponent doesn't have a card that neutralizes the one you want to play. My first impressions were that the order cards overshadowed the miniatures -- I played cards which effectively removed miniatures from the board without them even attacking.

Card and Miniatures Synergy: Typically, in order to play an order card, you must have a miniature that had the same level and attribute to play it. For example, if you played a STR Level 2 order card, you needed on the board a miniature that was at least Level 2 and had STR as one of its attributes. Pretty obviously, this means that you'll have an easier time playing a constructed deck of STR cards if your miniatures are all STR. You only start with a few miniatures of your warband on the board, so it's possible to have "creature screw" of order cards you can't play because your creatures don't have the right level or attribute. Much like Magic's colors, I bet that the different attributes (STR, INT and DEX) have their various strengths and weaknesses. And, yes, I said constructed deck. Which leads us to...

LCMG in Disguise: Much like Fantasy Flight Game's Living Card Game model, the decks and miniatures you receive in the game are fixed and quite playable. But, like any constructed deck or miniatures game, you may construct your miniature forces and order card deck from the miniatures and order cards you own. Three or so more sets will be published, so I don't know if you "need" to buy multiples of a set to be "tournament level" when designing your miniatures warband and order deck. But if you're one of those who say you must by multiples of the FFG LCG base sets, don't be surprised if you say the same about Dungeon Command. Speaking of multiples...

Not Enough Painted Miniatures for your D&D Adventure System: If you were expecting to replace your unpainted miniatures with the Dungeon Command ones, it won't be exact. For example, the Sting of Lolth set comes with two Giant Spiders and you "need" three in the Castle Ravenloft set. And I don't know if, after all the Dungeon Command sets have been published, we'll have painted versions of all the D&D Adventure System miniatures. Certainly you won't have the huge miniatures -- but they're easier to paint than the small ones! And if you're a beginning miniatures painter, I think you'll find the painted versions of your unpainted miniatures useful as models. And, of course, the Dungeon Command miniatures come with their own Monster cards for the D&D Adventure System. The Heroes of Cormyr come as Allies with their own monster-like AI. It should be fun challenge to play a four-hero party of a D&D Adventure Game with a few "I think I'll go THAT way" non-player hero allies! But speaking of painted miniatures and the Heroes of Cormyr...

The Heroes of Cormyr Paint Schemes are BLEARGH: Some of you may have always wished for your medieval fantasy fashionplate to be designed by the Artist Formerly Known As Prince. But the Heroe's purple and gold color scheme makes these miniatures the *only* painted miniatures I want to repaint. They're not badly painted, but I prefer my fantasy purple and gold on my Royal Crown dice bag rather than my dwarf, thanks.

Conclusion: I still had a few other comments that the other reviews didn't mention, but I've said what I thought the more important ones were. Basically, if you're the type of person who picks up and plays a Magic the Gathering preconstructed deck *and* like prepainted miniatures, Dungeon Command should be a good fit for you. If you're looking for a HeroScape successor, Dungeon Command isn't it (although HeroScapers.com should have HeroScape stats for the Dungeon Command miniatures soon enough).

EDIT: And, yes, there are promos. Grrr. http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/832485/secret-passage-and-in...

EDIT EDIT: The promos may only be are only alternate art. Stay tuned!
18 
 Thumb up
1.00
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Merric Blackman
Australia
Waubra
Victoria
flag msg tools
designer
Ramping up my reviewing.
badge
Happily playing games for many, many years.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Sam and Max wrote:
The Heroes of Cormyr Paint Schemes are BLEARGH: Some of you may have always wished for your medieval fantasy fashionplate to be designed by the Artist Formerly Known As Prince. But the Heroe's purple and gold color scheme makes these miniatures the *only* painted miniatures I want to repaint. They're not badly painted, but I prefer my fantasy purple and gold on my Royal Crown dice bag rather than my dwarf, thanks.


Blame Ed Greenwood and Jeff Grubb; I'm pretty sure they're the ones who came up with the colour scheme many years ago for the Purple Dragons of Cormyr!

Indeed, getting a tournament-worthy warband will take some purchasing. It is a drawback of the game. You need two sets to do any serious customization. I was quite happy with the warband I made with two Cormyr sets, but the one that Sarah made with two Lolth sets plus cards from Cormyr was even scarier!

To my mind, the cards complement the miniatures, especially as you can never play a card without a miniature in play! Note that each faction has a commander that helps with gathering order cards - the Cormyr faction has one commander that can discard cards to draw new ones, whilst the Lolth faction has one that draws cards instead of getting morale from treasures.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MC Shudde M'ell
United States
Utah
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
There's no obvious reason for the first band of adventurers to be Cormyr, though, so I properly blame the present designers (although I do not mind the colour scheme and am inordinately fond of Copper Dragons, so blame may not be the right word). It may be that Cormyr suffers in comparison to the Drow, who are just too damn pretty for words. Is this a trick to get us all used to the idea of playing as Drow just in time for Menzzobenzzobinzzobop?

I am concerned about the inevitable tournament decks, since at present it looks like the advantage goes to the poor sap willing to buy four copies of each set. Smaller expansion sets would give me an incentive to actually do some deckbuilding while still acquiring interesting new sculpts, or at least new paints of existing sculpts.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Athos
United States
Milwaukee
WI
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Sam and Max wrote:
...it seems that the FLGS wasn't hit by the buzz BGG was.


This is one of the eternal truths of BGG.
6 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
fightcitymayor
United States
Pennsylvania
flag msg tools
badge
"This is a really weird game, and you’ll find that most people will not want to play this."
Avatar
mb
For me, if I want to play Magic then I'll just play Magic.
I understand the developers made a conscious design choice to omit any dice-play, but I may be with Pete on this one: The proceedings seem kinda numb & anti-climactic as a result. Although if there were dice, does that end up cannibalizing sales of Ravenloft/Ashardalon/Drizzt?


 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
RJD
United States
Quad-Cities
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Eh, this game has little draw for me. I still have great fun with the original D&D Miniatures game and don't really see a need for this one, especially considering I already own many of the same sculpts. If they ever release a pack with the new figures for Jarlaxle and Cattie-Brie or even the Dragonlance heroes, I'd be happy to pick them up for the newer figures, but I suppose I shouldn't hold my breath.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
T C
United States
Unspecified
Unspecified
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I've enjoyed the game so far, and so did everyone who tried it at our FLGS. I do think that constructed warbands is going to be key to my long term enjoyment though.

Playing out of the box is roughly equivalent to playing a CCG with a starter deck. It can be balanced, fun, and good for learning to play, but part of what I enjoyed about Magic and other constructed deck card games was building my own deck and testing it against opponents. I expect I would enjoy it in this game as well.

Of course the cost to get a complete set of cards and figures for one player even with online prices is just over ~$200 for 4 of each set. Certainly not necessary, but if you were playing in a competitive tournament environment I am sure there would be advantages to that setup. If I had that many cards I would try something like an Intelligence based deck with War Wizards, copper dragons and drow wizards. Since all of those models only come one to a box, it isn't something you can cheaply put together. Many of the intelligence based orders are also one per set.

I will probably test new warband and deck ideas with some proxies until more people go from saying they like the game (store was out of stock for the event) to actually buying their own copies. Or perhaps be content with 2 sets of each for now, which does give 4 copies of some of the cards and mini's.
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Michael Off The Shelf Board Game Reviews
United States
Anchorage
Alaska
flag msg tools
badge
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
fightcitymayor wrote:
For me, if I want to play Magic then I'll just play Magic.
I understand the developers made a conscious design choice to omit any dice-play, but I may be with Pete on this one: The proceedings seem kinda numb & anti-climactic as a result. Although if there were dice, does that end up cannibalizing sales of Ravenloft/Ashardalon/Drizzt?




While I realize depth of strategy wise the 2 games are not meant to compete with eachother, but Dungeon Twister does very admirably without dice (unelss you use the solo rules).
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Adam Strong-Morse
United States
Michigan
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmb
Re: Building a tournament warband
One question I have is whether real tournament warbands would require buying (or trading, etc., to get access to) 4 sets. My experience in M:tG and similar "no more than 4 of one card" games is that most tournament constructed decks would consist mostly of sets of 4 of the same card, with a handful of cards that are represented with only 2 or 1. It makes your deck more reliable and more likely to be able to do what you want it to do, and it maximizes the advantage you get from including each card (because you're more likely to draw it).

I would assume that the same thing would be true in Dungeon Command. But my impression is that Dungeon Command sets have lots of singles in them--especially among the monsters, but also a bunch of single order cards. That makes me wonder if the way to build a really effective deck is to start with 4 sets. That seems like rather a lot (although it's probably not as bad as getting the resources to build a competitive deck in Magic.)

I'm curious if people who have a meaningful chunk of play experience like Merric agree about what tournament decks will look like, or if there's some countervailing factor I'm missing. I haven't played yet.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
MC Shudde M'ell
United States
Utah
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I don't have meaningful play experience, but I'm pretty sure morpheus133 is right about this - optimal deckbuilding requires purchasing/obtaining four copies of each set, for eight total boxes at the present time. For now, you can probably create something fully optimized with just four boxes of a single starter set, but it looks very much like the only path open to dedicated tournament deckbuilders is going to be getting four copies of each new box as it comes out.

And (again this is purely theoretical, but I'm pretty sure I'm right to the extent that one can be right about a prediction that includes an opinion) those decks/factions are going to be less interesting than the random events of the current starter vs. starter skirmishes, with its occasional wizard or priest hoping for a spell.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Freelance Police
United States
Palo Alto
California
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
UnluckyNumber wrote:
Eh, this game has little draw for me. I still have great fun with the original D&D Miniatures game and don't really see a need for this one, especially considering I already own many of the same sculpts. If they ever release a pack with the new figures for Jarlaxle and Cattie-Brie or even the Dragonlance heroes, I'd be happy to pick them up for the newer figures, but I suppose I shouldn't hold my breath.


I'd have a hard time justifying to my wallet purchasing these sets if I already had the miniatures! (:

Here's the rulebook. I'm confirming that, yes, warband decks can have up to four of a given Order card. ):

http://media.wizards.com/downloads/dnd/DnD_SkirmishRulebook....

As for the original D&D Miniatures game, here's the DDM Guild Site, which includes the rules and stat cards for each miniature. I'll let another BGG'er go through the process of finding which stat cards go with each DC set. You can, of course, proxy and use your D&D Adventure System miniatures with these rules!

http://ddmguild.com/rules-and-cards

If you want the HeroScapers design team to make HeroScape armies for these DC sets, see this thread (and post on it!). Scroll down to Ryougabot's post to see which DDM sets the sculpts were from!

http://www.heroscapers.com/community/showthread.php?t=33405&...

And... to further piss you off enhance collectability, there are two promo cards: http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/832485/secret-passage-and-in...
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
T C
United States
Unspecified
Unspecified
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Alot depends on how competitive a "tournament" scene there is for this game in your area. If your opponents are all playing with a single set then you may actually have less fun buying 4 of each set and making a warband and order deck that they have little chance of competing against. You risk winning without much challenge and they may get frustrated and not want to play any more.

If you are just playing casual games then you could scan and print proxies of the order cards you are missing and coolstuffinc.com is selling singles of the miniatures. Some of the higher morale monsters you may not want 4 copies of, since you could get stuck if you draw all of them early and don't have the leadership to deploy more than 1 for several turns. And while 4 copies of some of the order cards that come one to a set may be useful, even 2-3 copies is going to be pretty reliable because the order card deck can be as small as 30 cards compared to 60 in Magic.

You only "need" 4 sets of each is if you are in an area that has a serious competitive scene with multiple opponents who have 3+ copies of each set, and you get to play regularly. If you play D&D or any of the D&D adventure board games you would also get some added value there. Relative to other miniaure skirmish games the online dealer price is not too bad.

Even in a tournament setting I think two of each set would give alot of deck building options for a single player and could probably be very competive against most opponents who have 3-4 copies of each set. Especially if you buy a few singles of the models that come 1 to a set.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Miller
United States
Rock Hill
South Carolina
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Exactly right - there is nothing wrong with playing with base decks only. There is some deckbuilding possible from a base set, although admittedly not a lot. Each base deck contains 36 cards and the minimum deck size is 30, so you have 20% of the deck size in optional cards to edit with.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
C M
msg tools
mbmb
MillertimeRC wrote:
Exactly right - there is nothing wrong with playing with base decks only. There is some deckbuilding possible from a base set, although admittedly not a lot. Each base deck contains 36 cards and the minimum deck size is 30, so you have 20% of the deck size in optional cards to edit with.


Is it mainly just more cards that are needed for customizing or minis too? It looks like the card decks are running $4 each so if its just extra cards needed it doesn't sound too bad.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Chris Miller
United States
Rock Hill
South Carolina
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Personally I don't know; I haven't bought anything outside of one copy of each starter set. To me there is plenty of variety in there to have a lot of fun.

Given the limits on summoned units coming from their level I can't imagine you would need duplicates of more than a few minis.



Also - where are you seeing the cards on sale?
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
David Thiel
United States
Champaign
Illinois
flag msg tools
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
I'll second the question about the cards. I've seen individual minis for sale, but not the cards.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kevin Tatroe
United States
Windsor
Colorado
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmb
Auggie's Games is one place selling the Order decks, and is also selling the tiles and creatures. You can customize your warbands pretty cheaply going this route.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Thomas Haver
United States
Upper Arlington
Ohio
flag msg tools
www.theCOGS.org
badge
www.theCOGS.org
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
CSI is selling the mini's. They plan to sell the cards as well, and perhaps the promos once they get them in stock.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Damo the fool
Australia
Perth
Western Australia
flag msg tools
mbmb
With two (three?) more sets already in the works - I'll be holding off buying multiple sets for a while.

But then I have a rather large collection of the miniatures already and can see myself converting / proxying creatures into a test deck.

-----------

In terms of tension, I personally found all the games I have played so far (about 10 or 11) have ended very close. Usually with less than 3 morale in it. In fact two or three games came down to early treasure grab with only 1 morale being the decider in the end. Yes, having the right cards at the right time is part of it but making sure you don't use a card too early or too late is huge in this game.

In terms of strategy movement is key; making the pieces that fly / burrow both having advantages on certain maps. Cover is crucial with some very nice ranged attackers in the bands. It doesn't only come down to cards.

Oddly the "no dice" actually adds to the tension and strategy IMHO, since you can plan rather than trying to rely on a lucky hit/miss.

I have enjoyed playing it so far - will it hold up once I have played the same bands more than 10 times? Can only wait and see.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Freelance Police
United States
Palo Alto
California
flag msg tools
designer
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Introduction: I mentioned "creature screw" in my First Impressions. I finally got my own copies of the game, and here's a Quick and Dirty way to tweak the decks. You won't have an "official tournament" deck afterwards, but this should give a better First Impression of the game. More importantly, it will give someone else a better First Impression, so they'll play the game again with you!

1. From the Cormyr deck, remove the War Wizard and the INT Order cards from the warband.

2. From the Lolth deck, remove the three WIS Order cards from the warband.

This will increase the probability of your Order cards being playable with your creatures. However, once you have game strategy down, you may have a good reason to have a deck with a few creatures with an attribute, and several Order cards with this attribute. Likewise, it's easy to proxy miniatures and make copies of creature cards if you need another creature in your warband.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Merric Blackman
Australia
Waubra
Victoria
flag msg tools
designer
Ramping up my reviewing.
badge
Happily playing games for many, many years.
Avatar
mbmbmbmbmb
Another option is to use the commander that allows you to cycle through your order cards.

Cheers,
Merric
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
stephen biggs
England
flag msg tools
Esgaldil wrote:
I don't have meaningful play experience, but I'm pretty sure morpheus133 is right about this - optimal deckbuilding requires purchasing/obtaining four copies of each set, for eight total boxes at the present time.

I agree (almost).
The singles traders are currently selling the order-cards at low cost. making most of their profit from the miniatures. So long as that is true. You can build optimised decks by buying from the singles traders.

If the minatures stop being the "core" of the game. this game will indeed become MtG with a 30 card deck.
I recall that dreamblade became borring in exactly that way, when the "start of turn" abilitities became dominant over the tactical movement. I guess it's just easier to design cards which "nuke" your opponent than to design a good tactical wargame. And each expansion is another chance for the designers to "take the easy option".
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Don
United States
Louisville
Kentucky
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
I think going from 12 creatures to 11 will be pretty noticeable in a drawn out struggle - it's not like the War Wizard is bad, his damage is quite good from 10 range. I agree about moving int/wis cards tho. Also, most people will have a first impression from playing with 1 box, not 2 full sets.
 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Pierre-Luc Marsan
Canada
Rouyn-Noranda
Québec
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Auggie games are out of stock unfortunatly when it come to sting of loth or Heroes of Cormyr order cards. I just bought 3 pack of curse of the undeath and tyrany of the goblin order cards, and i will jump on the opportunity to buy the blood of grummsh... Any idea where i might find the one i am missing?

Thank

(Wizard should so much sell those separatly, the mini as well, maybe if we started a petition?)
 
 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.