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Mansions of Madness» Forums » General

Subject: Can't get anybody to play this game... rss

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177ark
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I got this game over a year ago, but all I've done since then is open the box and read the rulebooks. Every time I try to get friends to play it they get overwhelmed by the rulebooks and quickly opt to do something else. Also, having not played the game myself I can't exactly explain it well or simply.

Does anyone know of a detailed video that explains how to play?
I've had luck in the past getting friends to play complicated games like this with good tutorial videos.

Or is the game truly that complicated for my "casual" board gaming friends and should I cut my losses and put it up for trade?

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Mr. Monkey
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Don't even have them look at the rule book and have them play as investigators. As the keeper, you should know all of the intricacies of the game however the investigators should be able to play the game by knowing a very small subset of rules (how many moves, how to attack, what the general purpose is) and then you can fill them in on things as they go (e.g. "ohh,look! there is a box in this room you can hide in! this will..."). I did this with my group and it worked wonderfully... don't try to beat them up too bad as the keeper this first time.

As for learning it yourself, i found this set of videos very helpful as it walks you through one full game. I wouldn't have investigators watch, but after you watch it, then you should have a very good grasp on game play and you can explain it very briefly. Also, I would suggest setting it all up yourself and just letting them play.

The game is really not that complicated, especially for non-keeper players, and the more casual crowd can get into it as long as the keeper pumps the theme up a bit and adds their own flavor. Hope that helps!
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Mr. D
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The challenge in this game is for the Keeper. That person needs to know the rules very well. Have the game set up before hand.

For the adventurers, it's very easy. 2 moves, 1 action. These are the actions.... Trying to open a locked door counts as 1 of your 2 moves. Find the clues as quickly as possible and you'll find out what you need to do to win.


The keeper can explain darkness/fire, hiding, puzzles, etc. when they come up in the game.

That's it.

Good luck.
-TR
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Arthur Peterson
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It's a really simple game, like the two above have said. My wife doesn't care for complex games but she loves to play this one because all she has to remember is 2 moves, 1 action. That's really all there is to it. I love this design because, as someone who loves complex games, I get to scratch that itch well by being the keeper and managing all the details so that she can sit back and enjoy the simplicity of being an investigator.
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Craig Bocketti
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Clifton Park
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If you drive 3000 miles to NY I will most certainly play with you!!

But for serious, The "Watch it Played" series is a good start. That is what the previous poster linked too. The game is great fun. If your gaming group is a somewhat sensitive bunch, and you eventually do play as keeper, just go easy on them or they may be turned off from it completely.

Happy Gaming!
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Kyle Seely
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Carmel
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Setup is really the most time-consuming part of this game. If you're having people over to play games, make sure this is already set up. If you're having people over for the interminable "I don't know, what should we play?" discussion at 9:30 at night, no one will ever choose to play this - you have to plan ahead.

If it's already set up when people get there, they just choose investigators (you could even have investigators already laid out for each player if you really wanted to manage the situation) and you're off to the races.

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Robert Ell
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Where in California do you live?
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177ark
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Elltrain wrote:
Where in California do you live?


Asking this WITH your profile picture... "I ain't getting into your unmarked van Mister!"

But thanks everyone for all the tips, I'll have to watch the videos and see what I can learn.

Sluggonics wrote:
Setup is really the most time-consuming part of this game.


This worries me as I'm usually the one that takes my boardgames to my friends places. Is it really that "time-consuming"?
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Kyle Seely
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Ajere wrote:


Sluggonics wrote:
Setup is really the most time-consuming part of this game.


This worries me as I'm usually the one that takes my boardgames to my friends places. Is it really that "time-consuming"?


If you pick the scenario ahead of time, and have all your cards sorted into one stack and ready to dole out onto the board, it shouldn't take too long. But if you dump all your cards out when you get there, and flip through the book trying to decide a scenario, it'll take a while to sort all the correct cards out for the particular scenario you're doing, and then place them all correctly on the assembled board.
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Andrey
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Ajere wrote:
Every time I try to get friends to play it they get overwhelmed by the rulebooks


They shouldn't see the rulebook at all.
Just set the first scenario up before they show up, read the intro, get them to take characters and to make first turn.

1. The game isn't that complex
2. It certainly isn't complicated for investigators
3. And the only player who needs to actually know the rules is the keeper.

Good luck.
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Rom Brown
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Gisborne
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Yes, getting everything decided on and prepared beforehand is imperative.
It IS that time consuming.

There are plot variables that you have to decide on before set-up, and they end up determining which cards you'll have located in the particular "rooms".

As mentioned above, it is a great idea to get all the cards ordered for ease of layout before you play (especially if you are travelling with the game elsewhere), and best of all if you can get it set up before your players arrive.

The absolutely most important thing you must be careful of, is that these cards are placed in the correct places in the "Mansion".

One clue out of place and the whole game will fall in a crumbling heap.

Possibly pre-choose the investigators and their skills so you can just hand them out to your players.

Advise them to stick together and focus on finding the clues as quickly as they can; trying not to stray off the path too far.

It'd certainly be best, as also mentioned previously, not to try and kill them off (with too much fervor) ... better to try and make it a creepy and exciting experience for them, keep them feeling they are in dire danger - Tell a good story - keep them enthused. Hopefully ending in nail-biting finale.

If all goes well it shouldn't matter who ends up the victor, as long as the tale was a good one.

devil
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rob
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I actually store all my cards (the relevant ones anyway) in their seperate adventures with a little inventory of what is in each packet in a little 'keeper's box' and I find that pretty helpful. It seems like the logical way to store them for me. But as suggested you can organise all of your choices before hand, get familliar with the whole thing and then it can be quite a quick operation to set up.
I would suggest trying to choose one of the more rated scenarios if you would like your first experience to be a good one. It is a great game but some of the scenarios are better than others.
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Phil Crompton
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you can save a little time by picking your scenario options and then placing your room cards in plastic zip-lock bags with a little marker in them denoting what room they belong to. I've often done the whole game set-up days before and bagged the cards I need. Then when I go to my club or friends' houses it's a quick set-up.
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Bob T
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That's one huge reason I don't have M.O.M yet- you need more than one person. (Arkham Horror's the best $60 I ever spent cause you can play solo)

Been drooling over "Mansions" since it came out- I'd gladly plunk down $70 if I thought I'd ever get to play it...
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Le-Roy Karunaratne
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Similarly to what others have said. You can just explain the Investigators actions to the investigators and let them trust that you are doing things correctly in the first game.
Maybe only invite 1 or 2 people over for the first scenario and then expand from there. As it is a semi co-op game having just one experienced investigator helps new players significantly.

As the game progresses you explain stun/fire/darkness and in later games you can explain more about the keeper turn.
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No No No Sheep
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use the solo rule
 
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