Ray Greenley
United States
Harleysville
Pennsylvania
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I was wandering the open gaming room at the World Boardgaming Championships yesterday looking for a game when I saw two guys setting up Descent. I never played any version of it before and asked if they had room for another player. They graciously invited me to join and we started picking characters.

Peter was the Overlord, I picked the healer ('Disciple' variant) and Jerry chose a magic user (I can't remember the exact character/subclass combination unfortunately; his character could use surges to gain +2 Pierce and use a surge and a fatigue point to add two damage to an attack).

The basic rules were really straight forward and easy to pick up, even with my zero prior Descent experience. We did run into some questions on the details down the line, but nothing too crazy. The game definitely felt like it played quickly, especially with the different victory conditions for the various scenarios. In all three scenarios we played I felt a real time pressure as the heroes and really wanted to make the most of my actions.

Anyway, we appropriately started with 'First Blood'. I think the scenario lasted all of around 3 or 4 turns. Jerry ran his hero out and landed a powerful hit on the ettin (using surges to boost his damage output). I followed up by trying to hit one of the goblins on my way to the ettin, but missed. Not a great start! But as we soon learned, my job wasn't going to be focused on bashing for most the time. Peter responded by going after Jerry and getting some reasonable damage on him, and then sprinting his goblins towards the exit (with a few of them taking shots at us as they went by). After that I laid down some healing, and over the next couple of turns Jerry and I focused on the ettin and took him down for the win, with Peter only getting 2 or 3 goblins out. It felt like a very strong win for the heroes.

We leveled up and moved right on to the 'Fat Goblin' quest. 'Traveling' went the heroes way with two 'No Event' draws and one successful test resulting in a nice magic item draw.

On the first half of 'Fat Goblin' we had to try to keep Peter's goblins from making off with grain tokens. Jerry and I bypassed the initial spiders to try and get to the grain tokens more quickly. The spiders came up from behind, but only one was really able to get an attack in. The goblins rushed the grain as well. Jerry tried to use his new ability to give his attack 'Blast' to hit all the bunched up goblins, but a disappointing miss result meant they could get to the grain unscathed. Meanwhile the spiders were slowing us down a bit now and two sacks of grain were in the hands of fleeing goblins. Jerry tried again to blast the goblins, but yet another miss meant that two sacks were lost. I was able to get in and grab one of the sacks, but the third goblin had no trouble lifting and making away with the fourth and final sack.

So we moved on to the second half of 'Fat Goblin' with the goblin boss getting six extra health thanks to Peter's success in the first half. On the upside for Jerry and me, we made it through the first half with virtually no wounds. For his 'flex' group in this scenario, Peter picked a frighteningly large dragon. However, this was the first scenario we played where Peter wouldn't be getting any reinforcements, so anything we killed would stay dead. In this scenario Peter had to move prisoners to his goblin boss (Splug?) to 'interrogate' them and find a specific one, then escape from the dungeon with that prisoner.

Jerry had a strong start, killing two spiders in the first turn before Peter had a chance to use them at all. We decided on a much more deliberate pace, figuring that since the monsters weren't coming back we'd be better off clearing everything before us rather than bypassing monsters like we did in the previous scenarios. Peter started quickly moving prisoners in to Splug and started his interrogations. He succeeded on his first attempt, revealing an 'incorrect' prisoner.

Jerry and I moved up and engaged the dragon. I stayed forward to absorb the attacks while Jerry fired from behind me. After a few very successful attacks we were able to kill the dragon (Peter got one decent hit on me, but could have done more if he had remembered to play the 'Frenzy' card from his hand). Overall the dragon didn't perform up to expectations, and Jerry and I rolled on. Jerry took a few hard hits from some advancing goblins, but I was able to clear his wounds with a healing potion I had found.

Meanwhile, Peter had missed two interrogation checks in a row and was feeling the pressure of the advancing heroes. His goblins tried to slow us down, but with little effect. He finally discovered his target prisoner just as we were coming in to attack range. With so few minions left to distract us, Splug made barely any progress towards the exit with his quarry before we pounded him into submission. It was a decisive victory for the heroes!

I'm not sure if it was just the hero combo we had going that was especially potent, but it really felt like Peter was having a hard time doing much to slow Jerry or me down. A couple of times he started piling the wounds on Jerry, but I was able to heal him very effectively and it never felt like we were in much danger. Of course one thing that worked against Peter was that he was doing a lot of the rules look-ups and so often forgot to draw and/or play his Overlord cards.

In the end the game was very fun, and I greatly appreciate Peter and Jerry allowing me to join them. Unfortunately, since it was my only day at the WBC, so I won't be able to continue the adventure. Maybe again someday!
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William Smith
United States
Unspecified
New York
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That was nice "walkthrough" of your first few quests...I enjoyed reading it.
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Emmanuelle S
France
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Same, was very interesting Best luck to you for a future game
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Thijs Schipper
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It's interesting reading this, because my experience in encounter 2 was so different from yours.
We started the encounter with the same 6 extra health on Splig, I picked Flesh Moulders for my open group and moved the Spiders as far back as they would go while still blocking the door, to prevent them from getting taken out or bypassed before activation without at least some fatigue loss on the heroes' part.

Turns out that the Moulders' healing ability is a godsend in this particular encounter with 2 heroes. By using them to heal my spiders and by saving up some good healing/damage negation OL cards in encounter 1, I was able to keep two of the spiders alive for the entire encounter and more or less build an impenetrable monster wall right at the first door. I downed one of Mage heroes, who recovered 0 fatigue and was therefore mostly useless. He could not move away from my master Spider until he either did a rest order (would die again immediately), or the other hero killed my master Spider (which was pretty difficult with two monster healers nearby).

The two heroes were not able to block the hallway fully, so Splig simply splipped in between the two of them and won the scenario without taking a single point of damage.

Admittedly, I got lucky with the interrogations; I got Frederick on my first attempt, and it only took two attribute checks too. Still, extrapolating how slowly the heroes were managing to progress, if I'd only gotten Frederik as my fourth prisoner, they would probably have been able to kill the Spiders, I'd have retreated the Moulders and they'd now be facing a wall of supported Goblins, closed doors and a 13-health Lieutenant with knockback.

Nice to see there's a great deal of variability in this game!
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Joshua Siegfried
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DarQraven wrote:
Turns out that the Moulders' healing ability is a godsend in this particular encounter with 2 heroes. By using them to heal my spiders and by saving up some good healing/damage negation OL cards in encounter 1, I was able to keep two of the spiders alive for the entire encounter and more or less build an impenetrable monster wall right at the first door. I downed one of Mage heroes, who recovered 0 fatigue and was therefore mostly useless. He could not move away from my master Spider until he either did a rest order (would die again immediately), or the other hero killed my master Spider (which was pretty difficult with two monster healers nearby).


Maybe I'm just misunderstanding what you meant in your post, but I don't understand how you were using the Flesh Moulders' to heal your spiders since only the Master Flesh Moulder has the ability to heal other monsters.
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Thijs Schipper
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Yes, that's what I mean. Should have been more clear. A potential 3 heal on a certain monster, in addition to any OL cards is a very nice way to throw up a blockage.

edit: Although I'm an idiot and only just read the part in the Quest guide stating how you can only pick monsters with certain attributes for your open group. Turns out both the Zombies in encounter 1 and Moulders in encounter 2 were illegal picks. -_-
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Mike Massimilla
United States
Syosset
New York
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That's right, you can't pick Flesh Moulders in Fat Goblin Encounter 2 because they are the wrong monster type. I used the zombies to good effect against a 2-hero party. The master zombie was able to repeatedly immobilize one of the heroes, then move away so as to avoid being killed.

 
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