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Descent: Journeys in the Dark (Second Edition)» Forums » Rules

Subject: Initiative Order rss

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Larry Wooters
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So, I picked up this game this weekend and plan on playing it next weekend with friends so I have been reading comments and what not online. I see that the new second edition seems to weigh the winning column towards the player (where 1st edition weighed it towards the OL). So, my question. In a lot of games, timing is everything. So, what if an initiative order was instituted into the game like RPGs? If there was a chance that the OL could go before some players would the balance maybe go to an equal chance for both sides? Just curious what experienced players thought of this. I was going to try it after playing a few games the right way.
 
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Bryce K. Nielsen
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Interesting. Based on general comments here, I would have thought 1st Ed weighed the game towards the Heroes, and 2nd Ed towards the Overlord or a close even depending on number of players.

If you did want to introduce an initiative system, you could do what Super Dungeon Explore does and just roll dice. Biggest problem is multiple heroes. Is it an all or nothing (i.e. if OL wins, he does his entire turn first) or is it a partial (i.e. if a Hero wins, he goes then OL goes a little then another Hero, etc). That would add quite a bit of complexity to the game with some major reworking of rules.

-shnar
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Christopher Scatliff
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The game isn't weighted in either way. I don't see any reason to add unnecessary complexity.
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Larry Wooters
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Well, I hear opinions from all sides on that debate. And it doesnt have to be complex. Everyone rolls a die and go in order of their die roll. In case of ties, those players/OL take their turns at the same time with players going before OL. I could even see future expansions allowing for bonuses to Initiative as skills for players. It was just an idea and I just wanted experienced players input to how that would change the dynamics of the game.
 
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Chris J Davis
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In 1E RtL I had a house rule that used the heroes' Ranged trait vs. number of monster figures as the basis of determining initiative. However, in that case it was possible to improve a hero's Ranged trait, whereas in 2E (so far) you cannot improve the heroes' attributes. I don't really see much point of introducing a mechanic that will randomise the initiative order if there is nothing the heroes can do about it. As others have said, it is just adding unnecessary complexity without much return.

If you can have the initiative be affected by other factors, then it might be worth including.
 
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David Culp
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Overall I dont think the game is weighted towards player or OL. Some scenarios may be more difficult for one side or the other but I dont think the game itself favors one side or the other.

I think the game works well as written.
 
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Kelly Overholser
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I'd say that the game works fine without changes, personally. Try it a few times, make sure you are planning on the heroes moving first (i.e. don't put monsters right up where they start; giving them a free double attack on the first turn is a good way to lose a monster group fast).

If you really want to use an initiative system however, I suggest borrowing from FFG's Warhammer RP. Basically, everyone does an initiative check (each individual hero, and each monster group, makes their check). Then record the initiative in order, but only as "hero" or "monster", not which hero or monster got what place in the order.

When a hero initiative comes up, any hero that hasn't acted this round can act. When a monster initiative comes up, any monster group or lieutenant that hasn't acted yet this round can act. The order can change between rounds, as well.
 
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Chris Vanderzee
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In some of the later quests, one of the overlords rewards for winning part 1 is that all heroes skip their first turn.
 
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